Questrade is an online broker that is not for everyone and what I mean by this is that it won’t be very useful for individuals outside of Canada. For Canadian residents, however, it makes an excellent platform to make trades and investments in the US market. The platform is offered exclusively to residents in Canada and has a ton of options and features that make it stand out from the competition. They have various plans and commission structures to suit all traders and styles.

Questrade

Even though the broker is based in Canada, you still get access to all the major US exchanges, Forex and precious metals. You can also set up retirement plans and savings account and a whole range of other specialist savings account suited to all occasions. As a company, they currently manage over 5 billion in customer assets and has been in operation since 1999.

This is an excellent platform if you are Canadian and are looking for a way to access the US stock market. If you want to learn more about this platform, continue to read the article.

Commissions and Fees

The commission structure for Questrade is a little complicated as they have a few different options depending on the type of trader you are. Each plan covers all the different areas, including stocks, options and ETFs. In total, there are two different models to choose from: the democratic pricing model or the Questrade Advantage pricing model.

The democratic pricing is their standard pricing model that sets stock trades at $.01 per share with a minimum charge of $4.95 and a max charge of $9.95. Options are $9.95 including a $1 contract fee.

The Questrade Advantage model includes a further two different plans to choose from. To access the Questrade Advantage model, you first need to subscribe to one of their advances market data plans. You then have to choose between the variable plan and the fixed plan. The main difference is that you are charged per share with the variable plan.

No matter which choice you make, EFTs will be commission-free.

Research and Tools

I was very impressed by the research that was presented on the Questrade platform. They allow you to perform some in-depth analysis into stocks and is located in their Market Research center on their website. The platform uses MorningStar which is the go-to provider when it comes to stock research and because of this, the analysis was easy and quick. You can easily compare equities and EFTs in the Canadian and US markets and the screener make the job so much easier. If you’re looking into mutual funds, they have a high-quality system that is also powered by MorningStar.

Market Intelligence

Other Features

Questrade offers clients the ability to use two different trading platforms: IQ Web and IQ Edge. Over the two, Edge was the better pick and provided more detail and analysis when it comes to looking at stocks and options. The platform worked perfectly and didn’t bug-out when I had it running on my Chrome Browser. It will display everything you need, including live streaming quotes, charts and watch lists.

Conclusion

Questrade is an excellent platform to use if you are a Canadian resident. It will allow you to trade in both the Canadian stock market as well as the US one and it provides you with a number of high-quality features. The platform is suited to a range of trades thanks to their varying price plans and they use MorningStar as their main research platform, making everything so much easier. If you’re looking to get started in the stock market, this will be a great broker to go with.

Ally Invest is one of the newer broker platform on the market and kind of appeared overnight. However, this should not put you off the platform as it has some incredible features, including its trading price. This platform is going to be excellent for beginners who want to get their feet wet without spending too much money before they’ve even started. This is because Ally Invest is well-known for being one of the most competitively priced brokers on the market.

Ally Invest Review

The platform was actually born through TradeKing after it was acquired in 2016. Since then, Ally Invest has been a main competitor against its higher priced competition. Ally also has a lot of features that make it a go-to source for many investors. These features include their educational materials to help beginners and their live responsive interface. Despite the lower price, they also have a lot of research options, allowing traders to know the market before getting involved.

This Ally Invest review will go through the platform and will look at all of its features. If you’re interested in Ally Invest and want to know more, continue to read this article.

Commissions and Fees

As I have previously stated above, Ally Invest is one of the cheapest platforms on the market. It can safely hold the title of a “discount broker” as it allows beginner investors to come in and get started on a budget. One of the featured that I loved it that, despite having a low fee, an account doesn’t require any deposit and can be opened for free.

Ally Invest Commissions

Coming back to the fees, for a standard stock trade, you will be charged a mere $4.95. If you plan on trading options, you will be charged with an additional contract fee of $0.65, which is still very cheap when compared to the competition. Ally Invest used to be pitched against Options House but this has been acquired by ETrade (a more expensive broker). However, if you plan on trading stocks lower than $2, you will be charged an extra $0.01 per share. Unfortunately, Ally doesn’t offer any commission-free EFTs.

Research and Tools

Despite the lower price, Ally Invest offers an adequate array of research tools that make investing a breeze. They have a simple interface that allows you to see everything you need when evaluating a stock. You can check up the earning reports and there is even a column that will show you the trends associated with your stock of choice. They even offer a peers comparison chart for equities that is not seen often enough amongst other platforms. The one area that they do full short on is third-party data. Most platforms will offer at least 4-6 different third-party sources but Ally Invest only offers 1 – Standard and Poor’s. However, with the price of the platform, I can see why they only have one source.

Ally Invest Tools

Customer Service

Ally Invest is pretty good when it comes to customer support, especially over email and live chat. They were quick to response and seemed very knowledge with my questions and queries. In fact, out of all the platforms I have tried, they were one of the best. However, where they lack is in their phone support. Although I was connected very quickly, they didn’t seem very attentive to my needs and didn’t give an overall great impression. They were very knowledge but didn’t give me that “wow” factor I like to look for.

Conclusion

Ally Invest may have appeared overnight but has made a great impression in the discount broker scene. They can safely hold the discount title with their crazily low prices and beginner friendly software. I would say they are better for frequently traders because they’re cheap but don’t provide a lot of research. If you are thinking about buying and holding, we recommend you go with a platform with better research tools. However, overall, Ally Invest is a great platform that you should definitely consider.

Just2Trade is one of the few brokers that are trying to achieve the impossible. The perfect discount broker. What I mean by this is that they are a discounted broker that charges the cheapest rates in the industry and this is something that is very hard to do. If you aren’t charging very highly for your trading platform, you will struggle to make money to fund the research tools and additional features. The extra features are always more important and they are the reason people will go for the premium platforms. As a result, Just2Trade is not a good platform and doesn’t provide traders with an adequate array of useful tools.

Just2Trade Broker

However, they are excellent for budget traders who just want to get their feet wet. They have one of the cheapest commission fees on the market. Despite this, it may be worth putting your money in a different broker, especially one that will give you a decent customer experience.

Commissions and Fees

Right off the bat we will be looking into the fees and commissions of the discount broker. This is especially important as this is the main feature of their platform that brings in the investors. They are incredibly cheap when it comes to stock commissions, only charging you a flat-rate of £2.50 – one of the cheapest in the industry. There are few gimmicks and tricks with this and you get what they promise. If you want to trade options, you will have to pay a cheap $0.50 contract fee.

Just2Trade Commissions

Although I mentioned that you will receive these prices without any hidden costs, there is one you should definitely know about. That is that real time streaming quotes are only given in the first 15 minutes of every day. If you want to keep viewing the real time quotes, you will have to pay a monthly fee of $7.99.

Research and Tools

This is where Just2Trade really falls flat on its face. Just2Trade relies on the most basic package of MorningStar which isn’t very useful whatsoever. You have to navigate around the interface to find the research module, which is annoying named “trade assistance” in the Cabinet section. When you first enter the research screen, you will be greeted with a lot of information, including breakdowns, news coverage and a lot of data. However, don’t let this fool you as there is a massive lack of information when you dig a little deeper.

Just2Trade PLatforms

One of the biggest issues is that only stocks that are present on major exchanges are pulled up for analysis. This means that if you want to research EFTs and pink sheets, you will have to go elsewhere. In addition, there is no way to perform basic stock screening which is just awful.

Additional Features

When you are using Just2Trade, you will probably use their free platform called Just2Trade+. This is very basic and what you’d expect if you were to use a platform with $2.50 trading fees. You get all the basics that you need, including watch lists, charts, and 92 different indicators. The platform also runs very smoothly on the Chrome Browser which was a surprise but doesn’t even come close to what is offered by better online brokers.

Conclusion

Just2Trade is a bit of a gimmick in its own right. They are trying to be the best discount broker on the web with their crazy cheap fees. However, although they have achieved a cheap fee, they have sacrificed the user experience. They lack basic research features and only use the basic package offered by MorningStar. Their tools don’t come close to the competition and if you want continuous real-time streaming quote, you will have to upgrade to a monthly package. Personally, I would suggest you put your money into another platform.

Everyone has heard of ETrade. Their commercials and adverts are seen everywhere, so it would be no surprise to hear that they are one of the better online brokers to go with when it comes to trading. ETrade handles millions of trades on a daily basis and has thousands of customer accounts. They are one of the oldest on the market and make an excellent choice when it comes to their features and educational resources. This ETrade review goes deep into the details of the broker (as provided by Day Trade Review).

This platform is probably suited towards day and swing traders as it has a tiered commission structure. This means that you receive discounts as you trade more and more. With this in mind, this platform should be avoided by buy and hold type investors, as you will be paying more than most traders.

This is a great platform for beginners and frequent traders. So, with that in mind, let’s learn about some of their features.

Commissions and Fees

When it comes to being a discount brokerage, ETrade doesn’t quite make the cut when it comes to other online broker platforms. ETrade is one of the more expensive platforms to use and you can easily rack up a hefty bill if you aren’t a frequent trader. The reason you’d save more money if you were to trade frequently is because of ETrade’s tiered commission structure. This was briefly mentioned in the intro and the more you trade, the better fees you receive.

Etrade Commissions

If you plan on trading standard stocks, you will be charged $6.95 a trade. However, if you are making more than 30 trades a quarter, you will receive a fee of $4.95, which is substantially cheaper than most other platforms. If you want to trade options, you will be charged $6.95 + $0.75 contract fee. If you make over 30 option trades in a quarter the contract fee will be reduced to $0.50. On the bright side, they do have over 100 commission-free EFTs but there is an account deposit of $500 before you can get started with ETrade.

Research and Tools

ETrade has a ton of tools and features that make it a good platform to do research with. Research and news coverage are incredibly important when it comes to stock trading as news tends to drastically affect the price and volume. When you use ETrade, you have a range of news platforms to choose from, including Reuters, Standard and Poor’s, MarketEdge and SmartConsensus. The 4 platforms provide an adequate platform to research but it does fall short when you consider the competition. For example, TD Ameritrade provides users with 6 sources.

Customer Support

ETrade is excellent when it comes to customer service and they have 30 branches around the country. They provide both phone support and email support but have been known to be a little slow on the phone compared to their competition. They do, however, provide a ton of information for beginners that should get them started when it comes to stock trading and investing.

Etrade Customer Support

Conclusion

ETrade is one of the more well-known broker platform that is very user-friendly and more suited towards the beginners in the trading environment. They have a range of helpful tools and have recently acquired Options House to help when it comes to analyzing Options. They have 4 different news sources and are great for frequent traders who make 30 or more trades within a quarter. It is an expensive platform if you buy-and-hold and for this reason, long-term investors should avoid it.