ULTIMATE Questrade Review 2015: An In-Depth Look

Questrade Review Rating - 4 out 54 Stars out of 5Logo

When it comes to investing the trading landscape is bathed and bursting at the seams with countless discount brokerage houses. Big names like BMO Investment Line, E*Trade, RBC Direct Investing, TD Waterhouse, Interactive Brokers, and at least a dozen more are available to chose from. Sadly, through deeper analysis one can’t easily distinguish distinctive differences amongst them, especially within the circle of the big banks. Most brokerage firms primarily make their revenue through new and inventive concoctions of countless and ongoing fees pushed onto their account holders. Such fees include, but are not limited to, administrative fees, set-up fees, activity fees, inactivity fees, hidden fees, and after-hour fees. These added costs might be fine and dandy for the fractional percentage of high-volume traders simply because their sheer trade volumes and realized gains can potentially offset those expenses over time. However, for the rest of us those added and consistent fees are a reminder that over time “the house always wins”.

Questrade Offer Code (Referral)

Use Offer Code: Canada to receive $50 in Free Trades from Questrade.
Click here for more details.

Beginning investors will usually look to their local bank to open their trading account primarily out of convenience since they already possess one or more personal chequing/savings accounts with that bank and so opening a trading account is a mere phone call away. The unfortunate disaster with that approach is that big banks, and for that matter, virtually every other brokerage firm in Canada will charge you an arm and a leg for any kind of activity you do (and don’t do) in your trading account. Yes, even in this expansive internet age where everything is self-serve 24/7 convenience, commission schedules across the board are long, robust, and very much corporate bottom-line friendly. With standard rates at $29-$49 per trade being commonplace one can’t help but question if the entire industry is part of some price-fixing scheme. Where are the choices?

The Rise of Questrade® (please note that all mentions of the name “Questrade” refer to Questrade®). Founded in 1999 this company wanted to do and be something different. Seeing the growing discontent of active and inactive traders alike who were tired of watching their market gains washed away in a deluge of new brokerage fees by other companies Questrade began a process of streamlining the entire investment approach. And in so doing I think they’ve done a pretty impression job. In the rest of this review I will explore Questrade and their collective offerings in terms of the good and the bad.

First a little about me. I am not an aggressive highly active trader. Most times I will take the buy-and-hold approach as my tried-and-true investment style. And so when I buy into a company I do so for the long-term. However, at times I do get that itch and begin trading like a crazy person but this does not happen often.

Questrade offers a well-crafted industry unique ‘democratic pricing’ stock trading commission: 1¢ per share with a minimum charge of $4.95/trade and a ceiling maximum commission charge of $9.95 — ideal for long-term investors. Active traders (or anyone at any time) have the alternative option of 1¢ per share (1¢ minimum / $6.95 maximum), or a $4.95 flat stock commission charge — ideal for high volume share trades. Options investing for these active users come with an attractively low $6.95 + 75¢ per contract. And the process of enrolling into this alternative program simply involves subscribing to one of Questrade’s several advanced market data plans. This should be glanced at again! It is not a typo! Questrade offers the cheapest trades in all of Canada. Their price point is so impressive that it actually encourages new and/or small investors to jump in and take part in the investment game while also enticing disgruntled active traders of other brokerage firms to transfer in (at no charge). They make it abundantly clear that they don’t charge setup fees, annual fees, nor inactivity fees* on any of their services which is a welcome change to the industry norm. However, for those looking for more of an actively managed portfolio touch there is a new specialty service they now offer at a nominal annual fee. More on this later.

One of the other exciting great perks of being with Questrade, announced back in February 2013, is the ability to buy ETF (Exchange Traded Funds) stock at no commission charge — they are free to buy! With so many investors turning to ETFs these days due to their low MERs and diversified reach it is a wonderful breath of fresh air to be able to do so at no cost. Questrade may be one of the first discount brokers in Canada to do such a thing, and I applaud them.

They offer several types of accounts:

  • Margin Accounts (e.g. Individual, Informal Trust, Business)
  • Registered (e.g. TFSA, RRSP, RESP)
  • Forex (FX) and Contract For Difference (CFD) Trading
  • Managed Investing

And provides access to the following services:

  • Stocks
  • ETF (Exchange Traded Funds)
  • Options
  • Forex Trading
  • Debenture Trading
  • Mutual Funds
  • Gold
  • International Stocks
  • Bonds/CNSX Securities/GICs
  • Canadian IPOs
  • Portfolio IQ (Managed Investing)
  • 1¢ per share – $4.95/trade minimum / $9.95 maximum charge
  • Free (No commission charge)
  • $9.95/trade + $1/contract, or Active @ $6.95/trade + 75¢/contract
  • Cost is integrated in the pip spread @ approx. 1-2 pips
  • $30/trade
  • $9.95/online. Offline add an additional $45 for trader fee
  • $19.95/trade
  • Cost is 1% of trade value (minimum charge of $195)
  • Free (No commission charge)
  • $9.95/order with a minimum order size of $5,000
  • Cost varies – $99/yr minimum @ $2,000 in assets or more

New Account Sign-up

The process of opening an account online is remarkably intuitive, painless, and very quick (2 minutes for your general account, access to practice platforms, and community discussion / 15 minutes total for opening trading accounts). You will need your social insurance number (SIN), bank account information, and employer details (or source of income if unemployed). And although they have an offline printout alternative I highly recommend their secure online process instead because it reduces the amount of write-in errors and legibility issues, and supports e-Signature for online personal verification (via your SIN#).

Questrade Offer Code (Referral)

Use Offer Code: Canada to receive $50 in Free Trades from Questrade.
Click here for more details.

Sign-up Start Page

Account Selection

Agreements

One of the first things you must do while signing up is to create a user ID (8-20 characters) and password (min. of 8 characters incl. 1 uppercase, 1 lowercase, and 1 numerical or symbol) for your new account. In earlier days Questrade had an automated process that generated and emailed this password, and along with your email address served as your primary login credentials. This old way became a security risk and so they thankfully changed it back in 2011 to what you see now. The benefit of creating your own user ID and password also makes it much more convenient to return to an incomplete application at a later date. Sessions time out after 20-mins of inactivity giving you ample time to collect and go over your details.

Questrade offers two collections of accounts: Self-directed and Managed Investing. If you want to have full control over your account(s) then self-directed is for you. For those who want a professionally managed approach handled by a real staff (Questrade Wealth Management division) behind the scenes that carefully considers your personal goals and risk tolerance to match, manage, monitor, and adjust the best investments for you without your daily involvement then managed investing (known as Portfolio IQ under Questrade’s lexicon) is the best option. However, unlike self-directed, Portfolio IQ does come at a price — a $99/year minimum management fee. In my opinion self-directed is all one will ever need considering how making informed investment decisions is quite simple for even newcomers these days; and to compound on this, self-directed accounts have no fees (outside the usual trade commission) associated with them unlike their managed investing cousins.

After signing up online you are able to immediately sign into your new account and have a look around. However, to officially activate your account (so as to begin trading) an initial deposit is required — self-directed: $1,000 for margin accounts, $1,000 USD for forex accounts (CAD deposits are auto-converted to USD), $5,000 to trade option spreads, and $25,000 to write/sell uncovered options. For managed investing (Portfolio IQ) there is a $1 initial deposit required (this will be discussed further in the next section). Once the initial minimum deposit has cleared Questrade emails you a confirmation message. For offline applications you will be contacted by a representative confirming trading can begin. To maintain your active account in good standing a minimum equity balance of $250 is essential. It takes 1-3 business days from signing up for your account to begin trading. The longest part of the process is waiting for the funds to be received and processed by Questrade.

Questrade supports several methods to fund your account including EFT (from CAD accounts), wire transfers, cheques, pre-authorized deposits, and broker-to-broker transfers. It should be noted though that you cannot use the EFT method to send USD to your Questrade account. The reverse is possible where you can withdraw USD funds to a USD bank account (they require a void check or a pre-authorized deposit agreement form signed and stamped by the bank). To deposit USD you can set up a pre-authorized deposit agreement with Questrade which takes about 1-5 business days, or send a certified cheque/bank draft to their office, or wire transfer the funds directly to your account. Your alternative final options are to either just convert your existing CAD balance (within your Questrade account) to USD using the Exchange Funds tool (found under the My Requests tab) which can take up to 24 hours to process, or take advantage of Norbert’s Gambit (successful conversions have been confirmed). Funding your margin (or other non-registered) account by either currency type will automatically be placed into a sub-account (more about sub-accounts later) of the same type (they do not perform automatic conversions — you must execute the request on your own). Electronic withdrawals take roughly 3 business days to process and arrive into an external bank account.

An interesting related note is that Questrade continues to be the only brokerage in Canada to allow dual-currency (CAD and USD) to be held simultaneously inside registered accounts (i.e., RRSP, RESP, TFSA, LIRA, RIF, LIF) which in and of itself will save a tremendous amount of money from unnecessary conversion fees.

Back in October of last year Questrade rolled out a subtle but important revision to its inactivity fee policy. It’s actually not that bad when you peruse the details. If anything it’s quite reasonable. As has been long known Questrade does not charge an inactivity fee, but this policy adjustment can potentially charge $19.95 per calendar quarter. If, however, you make at least one commissionable trade per quarter (once every 3-months) you will not get charged any inactivity fee at all. If you are inactive for a quarter and do get charged that fee, but then go about making at least one trade in the following quarter you will receive up to $19.95 in commission-free trades. It should also be noted that all new accounts younger than 6-months are exempt from this fee (you will not get charged for being inactive). The same applies to those who are 25 years of age or younger (no inactivity fee). Also, all clients of Questrade, and households having the same physical address, with combined equity assets of at least $5,000 are exempt from this fee. For most investors this change is trivial since their assets are almost always over $5,000, and so will never get charged this inactivity fee. As I pointed out earlier, I think this change is perfectly reasonable and still miles better than all other discount brokerage houses who not only charge an inactivity fee, with no exceptions, they do so more frequently (each month) and tack on countless hidden fees which Questrade does not.

Member Login

Your account’s primary control panel is known as myQuestrade and, quite simply put, it is a beautiful experience with well thought out organization and visual appeal. Someone put a lot of love into this area. Within the panel you can view your account activity, balances and positions, manage your personal details, view statements, make fund transfers in/out of your accounts, upload/download your documents, exchange CAD/USD currency, take corporate action on shareholder communications, transfer positions, open additional accounts, retrieve tax slips, exercise options, and interact with mutual funds.

myQuestrade Home

Balances & Positions

Mutual Fund Centre

Within the My Accounts tab is the handy Upload Documents tool serving as the fastest direct delivery method for any of your documents to any of your accounts held at Questrade. No more snail mailing, faxing, or even coordinating deliveries with a representative.

Accounts #’s consist of 10 numerical digits (e.g. 12345678-90). This is a big jump from their pre-2011 6-character alphanumeric size and as such some external banks have been reported to still impose an 8-character limit for payee accounts when you attempt to send money to Questrade. To get around this you only need to provide the 1st 8-digits of your Questrade account # and the funds will still arrive successfully.

If at any time you need help on practically anything you can always use the online Questrade Live Help session (usually accessible from the top or right-hand side of Questrade’s site) — operational on weekdays (excluding holidays) from 8:00am – 8:00pm EST. I have found that using Live Help is much quicker than calling into their offices. And after speaking to several of their online representatives (those who deal with potential new accounts and others who deal with existing accounts) I found them to be very well-informed, professional, and quick in their responses. They all also took the extra time to provide web links for further reading which was a nice bonus.

As a handy note, sharholder communication is often times sent through normal mail, however, there is now a new way to change this allowing you to receive all investor correspondence electronically. Visit Investor Delivery for more details.

Account Activity / History

Located under the My Portfolio and My Accounts tabs are a slew of subcategories for providing details about trading and general account activity. These subcategories include: Balances and Positions (pictured above), Investment Return, Account Activity, Statements, Equity Trade Confirmations, and Tax Slips. When Questrade made significant changes to its UI back in 2011 they in effect moved all trading activity history into myQuestrade. This is a very welcome change because prior to this all trading activity history was provided by a third-party clearinghouse company called Penson Financial Services and you had to use a completely different site and another set of login credentials to get access to this information. Now you can get a list of all your investments (stocks, funds, bonds, etc), current cash balances and positions (in CAD and USD), total equity, buying power, and more all within one location. Trading history is maintained for 36 months while eStatements, generated monthly, are stored for 7 years. Tax slips (e.g. T5) are also available electronically for each year.

Trade Confirmations

Account Statements

Account Activity

For existing long-time Questrade members carrying trading activity prior to February 4th, 2011 you will need to visit the old Penson site located here. You will also need to know your old 6-character Questrade account #(s) because the Penson site does not know anything about the existing 10-character account # representations. Here is a quick peek at what the Penson trade activity site looks like.

Trade Activity (up to Feb 2011)

As stated above, this Penson site is only relevant to existing Questrade members who wish to access archived trading activity prior to February 2011. All new members can just ignore what I just said about Penson and skip to the next paragraph. But for those interested in Questrade’s chronological history — as noted and visually seen above — trade activity was outsourced and as such the first noticeable difference was that the web UI was completely different and very behind in the times. At the time it was still very surprising that with the skill set and desire by Questrade to offer a clean and friendly UI experience on their main web domain that they didn’t feel it necessary to pony up the cash to in-house these account activities, nor had the motivation to request web-service APIs from Penson giving them free rein to skin over the original Penson experience. Although the details held within Penson were extensive it was cluttered and confusing. The trade and settle date balances took 24 hours to be reflected in history; the same was true with buying power which updated once, at the start of each day. Most of what was found in this old Penson site is now integrated into Questrade Trading Platforms, discussed later.

Questrade margin accounts (for stocks & options trading) are comprised of two sub-accounts — one for Canadian funds, the other for US funds. This is very convenient since it reduces unnecessary conversion charges when trading US instruments. So, transactions on US equity stays as USD unlike most other brokerage firms which will perform conversions back to CAD right away. For example, with Questrade things like US dividend income from US traded stocks will remain as USD and automatically be deposited into your US sub-account. Funds can be moved between sub-accounts using myQuestrade’s Exchange Funds feature which will involve a conversion based on the spot rate at the close of market in Toronto plus a spread (+1.99% for both margin and registered accounts).

Questrade highly encourages the viewing/downloading/printing of eStatements made available in myQuestrade for all account activity at no charge. They even go as far as offering Microsoft Excel friendly output as another free alternative. However, for those who still insist on mailed paper statements, they can do so at a hefty $10/statement which can only be requested by contacting them directly by phone or through Live Help.

Trading Platform

And so begins a new era in trading platforms for Questrade. For as long as we can remember Questrade had been chugging along with their capable, but aging, platforms: QuestraderWEB, QuestraderELITE, and QuestraderPRO. Although QuestraderWEB had been renovated considerably all three had been in the wild for well over 10 years. They all performed quite well in their own right but had not kept up with the times as was evident with the offerings at other discount brokerage houses. Questrade marked a new chapter with the introduction of the Questrade IQ suite.

Questrade has been doing a lot of work behind the scenes to revamp their investor’s trading experience. When they released a whole new layout for myQuestrade one couldn’t help but head scratch and wonder why their trading platforms never received the same treatment. Well, the answer can’t be clearer: they were being updated as well — it just took them a while. The epiphany was realizing that having three separate desktop trading platforms was confusing and so they opted to retire all three in favor of a single, more modern trading platform known as Questrade IQ.

Questrade IQ is a suite composed of four flavors: Questrade IQ Web, a fully functional web-based trading platform (for Internet Explorer 8+, Google Chrome 9+, Firefox 5.5+, Safari 5.1+ for Mac Users); Questrade IQ Edge, a streamlined desktop-based trading platform (for Windows XP/Vista/7+); Questrade IQ Mobile, their first mobile entrant in the field of trading (for iPhone/iPod Touch iOS 5+, Blackberry OS 7+, and Android OS 2.3.3+); and Questrade IQ Essential, their non-install web platform designed for tablets (e.g., iPad 1/2/3+, BlackBerry Playbook, Android 3+), netbooks, and other systems/devices (e.g., Linux – Ubuntu 12+, Fedora 17+) that may not have the capability (or access) to the specific minimum requirements outlined by the others in this suite. In other words, IQ Essential is the fallback trading platform for everyone else that doesn’t quite fit into the other categories. This entire suite is free for all members and includes snap quote live Canadian/U.S. streaming Level 1 data, research tools for fundamental and technical analysis, a charting package, and more. At times market data can be delayed (up to 15 minutes) and when this happen a cute clock icon appears on-screen to let you know of the streaming hangup. And although it is made available for free, Questrade IQ can be upgraded to include one of three data packages or add à la carte feeds.

Questrade IQ Web

Questrade IQ Edge

Questrade IQ Mobile

Questrade IQ Web makes use of Microsoft’s Silverlight multimedia add-on. Silverlight is Microsoft’s answer to Adobe Flash. Flash is by far the most popular of the two browser add-ons but Questrade steered clear of using it when developing IQ Web. Why you ask? Because Flash has been widely criticized for its neverending security and performance problems; and so, due to safety concerns using Flash by its traders, and to better provide a more fluid experience Silverlight was selected instead. And it was certainly an excellent choice because its responsiveness within the top four most popular browsers is significantly faster than if it were to have been done using Flash (CPU usage was also kept to a minimum). If you don’t have Silverlight installed already you can do so when you attempt to use this online trading platform for the first time.

In terms of features and functionality, Questrade IQ Web is an excellent amalgamation of power and usability. It introduces the concept of Gadgets into its platform lexicon. A gadget is an arrangeable (drag-drop, snap-to, resizable), user-customized window of a view into your trading/market details. IQ gadgets include: Activity (a logs viewer), Balances, Message Inbox, Time and Sales (current global activity of a stock), Level 1 Quotes, Level 2 Quotes (if you paid for this addition), Quick Charts, Today’s Orders, Position Summary, and Watch List. Unlike its IQ Edge cousin, Questrade IQ Web can change its theme to be either Dark (default) or Light. There are two layouts available for IQ Web: Standard and Advanced. The default layout is Advanced. The difference between the two is that Standard does not permit any gadgets besides Balances and Level 1 Quotes (located on the right sidebar); windows are not arrangeable nor customizable; and you cannot adjust the route nor sub-route for your orders. Because of these limitations we recommend you remain in the default Advanced layout to have full access to all of IQ Web’s features. The Standard layout would be for those who just want to make quick and simple trades without any care for other details that might be cluttering their screen. Sessions timeout after 15 minutes of inactivity. Any custom changes you make in IQ Web only get saved when you manually log out; so don’t mistakenly think you can just close the browser and assume your changes will be recorded. We also noticed that any and all of your changes are lost permanently if you attempt to switch between the Standard layout and the Advanced layout. So be careful to pick and stick with one, or risk having to customize your gadgets again.

Layout – IQ Web

Gadgets – IQ Web

Order Entry – IQ Web

Questrade IQ Edge, although very similar to IQ Web, does carry a few tricks up its sleeve. IQ Edge allows for an unlimited amount of workspaces. A workspace is a screen area allowing one to open and customize a new set of gadgets or windows for a particular purpose that suits a trading environment style. Multiple easily navigatable workspaces is a valuable asset to active traders. The other big difference between IQ Edge and IQ Web is that IQ Edge offers a more advanced plate of options for order entries: AON (All or None), “iceberg” order types (large orders are broken up into smaller executable ones), and the ability to order anonymously. There are a few subtle differences too. IQ Edge allows for extensive gadget customizing which takes them well beyond what is possible in IQ Web. However, most of these customizing features are visual (e.g. float, pin, drag-drop, resize, colorize, blink text); it depends on the gadget. Curiously, gadgets don’t have a snap-to feature in IQ Edge and so they do not auto-arrange when the main application window resizes. It was a bit inconvenient but not a big deal because most people just position their gadgets at a particular spot and maintain the application window at a set size. Interestingly, any gadget customizations you make in IQ Edge does not transfer over to IQ Web, and vice versa. However, ticker symbols and related data inside gadgets are properly maintained and do transfer over between web/desktop environments. IQ Edge also only carries the “Dark” theme (recall that IQ Web carries both a “Dark” and “Light” theme).

One additional allure of IQ Edge is that it gives a trader the sense of comfort knowing their platform’s trading activity will not be delayed or experience hiccups as might be the case if using a web browser. IQ Edge was written from the ground up using optimized C++ code and deployed for Intel/AMD processors ensuring the speediest of responses for the most diehard of active traders. Unfortunately, at the time of this writing there is no 64-bit version of IQ Edge. It will still run normally on 64-bit systems; it just won’t be running as efficiently as it could be. Here’s hoping that in the near future an optimized 64-bit version of IQ Edge will be available.

Layout – IQ Edge

Charts – IQ Edge

Order Entry – IQ Edge

And then we have Questrade IQ Essential which serves as Questrade’s answer for those who, for one reason or another, may not have access to (or be compatible with) one of their other trading platform offerings. This would be the perfect choice for Linux desktop users or the ever growing presence of tablet carriers. Because IQ Essential is a fully compliant HTML5 browser-based experience, unlike its IQ Web and IQ Mobile siblings, it does not require a download or any third-party add-on (i.e., Microsoft Silverlight plugin) to be fully functional. As such this platform can also serve as an alternative option for Windows and Mac OS X users who for security reasons may prefer not to use Silverlight at all. Technically, IQ Mobile is a free download from Google Play and Apple’s App Store and so smartphones using other operating systems (e.g., BlackBerry, Linux, Windows Phone mobile operating system — Nokia) can still get access to it as an HTML5 web app.

Taking a spin with this platform was an incredibly liberating experience. IQ Essential was surprisingly lightning fast and responsive in every web browser we tested. Memory and CPU footprint usage was astonishingly small despite the depth of options, activity, and functionality it had to offer. It’s very clear IQ Essential preludes Questrade’s bolder steps of one day unifying IQ Mobile, IQ Web, and IQ Essential under one brand offering — a full-featured web-based experience for every device and every system any time, anywhere; a glimpse into the nascent future of stock trading platforms.

Layout – IQ Essential

Positions – IQ Essential

Charts – IQ Essential

Unquestionably, this new trading platform suite is a giant leap in the right direction for Questrade. The collection encompasses everything QuestraderWEB, QuestraderPRO, and QuestraderELITE had and some. And this suite does so in the most intuitive, feature-rich way. By taking the bold step to retire their older platforms by supplanting them with a new next-generation trading environment it is a sign that Questrade cares deeply about providing the best experience for the casual trader and demanding active user.

Interestingly, upon further investigation that spanned several months we found that new releases for this suite is always consistent and swift — a major new release occurs every month — bringing with it a slew of enhancements and bug fixes, based on direct user feedback of their online community discussion forum: The Exchange.

A few other unique features which i am surprised other brokerages have not yet duplicated is firstly the clever partnerships Questrade has with third party websites (e.g., iShares ETFs) — providing one-click Buy Now buttons across the web — permitting on the fly quick trades that whisk the buyer back into the IQ platform to complete the pre-filled order ticket. And secondly, a featured called Margin Power (for self-directed accounts) which, by its name, gives you a clue on at what it does. By linking your existing TFSA account to your margin account it increases your buying power within your margin account by leveraging the assets you already hold in your TFSA making it enormously convenient to enter new positions without requiring a transfer in of new cash or selling existing securities. Both features are wonderfully handy!

The long requested single sign-on feature is now available for Questrade members. You now use one user ID and password to access the trading platform, myQuestrade, and the Exchange. This saves a tremendous amount of time because in the past Questrade had originally required at least three different sign-on credentials to access each of their trading landscapes, and so to no surprise this was a heavily requested feature. We welcome its addition.

To get a better feel of what Questrade IQ has to offer here is a collection of video tutorials overviewing this trading platform’s most common features.

Videos - IQ Web

Videos - IQ Edge

Videos - IQ Essential

Now, to give you a better sense of who Questrade is and how much they’ve improved here’s a flash from the past with a historical look at their prior trading platforms. If you are not interested in knowing more about their past feel free to skip over this paragraph. Some time back, prior to Questrade IQ, Questrade offered a few other trading platforms for stocks and options: QuestraderWEB, their free trading platform, and QuestraderPRO and QuestraderELITE, desktop applications requiring a monthly subscription fee. For the remainder of this discussion I will only focus on QuestraderWEB. QuestraderWEB was a web-based application (fully compatible with Firefox 3.6+, Internet Explorer 7+, Safari 4+, Chrome 7+, and Opera 8+) with a very pretty and intuitive user interface not dissimilar to the myQuestrade control panel. It was Questrade’s only free platform at the time and although it included unlimited instant quotes these quotes were not updated in real-time unless you refreshed the web page. It took about 10 mins of non-refreshing before quotes were updated. For real-time live streaming quotes you were required to upgrade QuestraderWEB to include QuoteStream, a $19.95/month additional charge. This older platform required the Java plugin within your browser to function correctly.

QuestraderWEB

QuestraderPRO / ELITE

For a closer look at what QuestraderWEB was like check out the following video tutorial collection. It walks you through and performs common transactions within that older platform. You will get a pretty good idea of how Questrade’s older platform was like prior to their shifting gears and moving in the direction of the more intuitively streamlined Questrade IQ suite.

Videos – QuestraderWEB

One of the things I wish was included in the platform was some kind of transaction cost calculator that took into consideration exchange rates (estimated). Other brokerages already do this so I was a bit surprised not to find something similar. The platform’s quotes (level-1) and charts are basic but it is not surprising since it is free.

A little note on exchange and ECN fees: These are the fees Questrade is forced to charge you when you make a transaction that removes liquidity from the market (i.e. buying at the ask or selling at the bid). Although these fees translate to mere pennies for most traders one can avoid paying them altogether by executing transactions as a limit (or stop) order instead of as a market order request. For US stocks you can also send orders to non-direct access ECN networks (LAMP, MNGD, or POST) to avoid these fees.

Most people will sign-up for the standard marginal account which gives you access to borrow funds at an amount more than your current cash balance. This extended buying power ability is very useful and can come in handy when you need to jump on market opportunities. Assuming you’ve bought on margin and haven’t settled your stocks after 3 days of the purchase the margin interest rate is prime + 3% which is inline with most brokerages. For more information about stock margins refer to this page.

One of the selling points Questrade likes to bring up is that for mutual funds they will rebate the trailer fees. They call this their Mutual Fund Maximizer. Trailer fees are commissions by fund management companies paid to your brokerage house for being the retailer that sold you your fund(s). This commission is an ongoing source of revenue for your brokerage as long as you keep holding onto those fund(s). You don’t see this fee because it is part of the MER of the fund. So Questrade is willing to rebate this fee back to you each quarter. But there’s a catch. You need a minimum of $36,000 in mutual fund holdings to be eligible for this rebate. The reasoning is simple. There is a processing fee of $29.95/month so the rebates will start paying back if your mutual fund holdings is worth more than $36,000 (based on a 1% trailer fee).

Security

When making trades one of the primary concerns held by most people is security. Like banks, most discount brokerage companies deploy different protection strategies to secure your account such as randomizing and asking multiple security questions, displaying pre-selected image captchas that only the account holder would know, or even providing digital key devices which in conjunction with your secret password must be pressed to generate the final half of the login passcode each time.

Questrade’s security measures have improved dramatically over the years. For example, upon sign-up for a new account you are required to create a user ID, password, and define a security question. User ID’s are required to be 8-20 characters long while passwords must be at least 8 characters in length and include an uppercase, lowercase, and numerical (or symbolic) character. Although this seems like a standard approach across the web this is actually new and a big improvement for Questrade. They also now include extra verification steps such as when you attempt to log in to your account from an unrecognized system you are prompted with a user-set security question. Security advice is made available outlining how to protect yourself by taking precautionary steps like using anti-virus software to keep your computer clean. Interestingly, they have made the extra effort by partnered with Symantec, using Norton Anti-virus to continuously scan/monitor their own internal files, ensuring your investments and privacy on their end are secure. Questrade was also one of the few discount brokerage firms that were not affected by the Heart Bleed Bug — they were protected all this time. Although they don’t have security guarantees against intruders breaching accounts on your end, if there is fraudulent activity and it’s proven to be due to the negligence of Questrade they are in a position to cover your loss. Also note that Questrade is a CIPF member and so Canadian investors are covered up to $1,000,000.

Final Thoughts

Reviews online are overwhelming negative towards Questrade. Prior to writing this review I decided to read many of these complaints so that I could be aware of and keep an eye out for any of these problems. I even took note on exact steps for some of these problems with hopes of recreating them. I had originally planned to share a collection of these complaints but seeing as how many of them might have already been resolved by Questrade I felt the company deserved another look before passing judgment. So after spending a number of days using their entire suite of online tools, making trades, and attempting to recreate customer complaints I can report back and say that I did not experience a single issue. My conclusion is that either Questrade had fixed several of these earlier problems or these complaints were from beginning traders who were not familiar with the platform or with company policies.

Overall my experience with Questrade was a very pleasant one. Their “killer app”, so to speak, is free, no commission charge, ETFs (Exchange Traded Funds) and that one can execute trades as low as 1¢ per share ($4.95 minimum) with no catch. It doesn’t get any simpler than that! In rare instances I sometimes come across other brokerages offering promotionals at $4.95/trade but when you dig deeper into their fine print it almost unequivocally is for “big fish” traders who must spend upwards of $100,000/month in trading activity to be eligible for the $4.95 offer. Clearly not for the average consumer. This is not the case with Questrade. With Questrade it is as low as $4.95/trade and a max of $9.95/trade — ETFs always being free. Period.

Questrade’s low commission rate is so good it serves as an enticer to make more trades more often and not have to hesitate waiting for that right moment in the market which will cover your commission costs. I am happy to see Questrade has made many quality enhancements, including a unified single sign-on approach, giving a more consistent milieu. There are a few areas that can be improved such as remembering user settings across different trading platforms, but with such dramatic savings found among all their services it seems understandable that one can’t always have everything. So I will give them a pass on that.

Should you join? Yes. Especially for those who are thinking of starting to invest. For someone like me who is a casual trader Questrade fits my needs perfectly. And after getting a better feel of most of what they have to offer I am more than confident they can accommodate me or any other person’s growing needs as an investor.  

 

Questrade Offer Code (Referral)

Use Offer Code: Canada to receive $50 in Free Trades from Questrade when signing up for a new account.
Click here for more details. Happy trading!

Questrade Review Rating - 4 out 5

4 Stars out of 5
User Ratings: 95% out of 100 (2179 votes)
by Emma LiThursday, December 18 2014

Questrade® is a registered trademark and/or service mark of Questrade, Inc. Questrade Inc. is a member of the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) and a member of the Canadian Investor Protection Fund (CIPF).

4,820 Comments

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Questrade Offer Code (Promo Code)Use Questrade Offer Code: Canada to get $50 when joining.
  1. Dakota Adkinson

    Amazing questrade review. Crazy, super details!

  2. Nathanial Von Eye

    if you plan to learn @skyler then i suggest you try their virtual account since it doesnt involve real money. For real money i recommend a non-registered account because you can at least deduct capital losses against your gains; registered accounts dont have that privilege. But as the other fellow said you do get taxed whereas registereds either don't or is deferred.

  3. Mario

    LOL i just noticed the conversion rate in Questrades registered accounts are much more favorable to me than using other places like XE or even my local banks. That alone just got me to tell my friend to hook up with them. Thanks for the questrade offer code btw!

  4. Skyler

    Great discussion here. I notice some talk on registered accounts and so i am on the verge of pulling the trigger and opening a registered account and was wondering if some had advice to newbies starting online trading with Questrade which type of account is more suitable for a starving undergrad wanting to acquire experience. Should i just go with a regular or a tfsa or other registered type of account?

  5. Marquez Courthope

    As far as i know @steve you can indeed add other users to your account. I believe some of the screenshots above show this but i am not entirely sure you can pre-select how a specific person has certain types of account access. If anything i believe it only gives full access or a pre-set limited access to all.

    I strongly recommend you speak to one of their online agents which are pretty knowledgable and quick. The link to them is above in the review under the "Links Contained in this Questrade Review" section.

  6. Steve the Shop Owner

    I am a sole properitor and i thank you for a wonderfully detailed questrade review and your snapshots really make things crystal clear. I was wondering how many authorized personel i can add to my account once opened?

    I have several family members that work for me and i would like to give them certain access to the trading account (each having different types of privileges). Does Questade offer such granularity for accounts?

  7. Jaquan Gajowski

    AFAIK @carey the vast majority of OTC and pink sheet stocks aren't eligible to help in a registered account as per the rules governed on ALL Canadian brokers. However i recommend you talk to them via their livehelp window to see if a specific OTC/Pink stock is there to be help in a registered account such as a TFSA. Hey, you never know.

  8. Carey

    Anyone know if opening a TFSA account one can then buy OTC or PINK stocks?

  9. Macey Ames

    Hi @Sandwich Monster. Like the questrade review's discussion says that Questrade appears to be to allow a more wider base of users since IQ Mobile is primarily for iOS users (iphone) and Android users. Which leaves out linux and Windows phones to name a few.

    IQ Essential is platform independent and so it allows for Linux users (like me) who use a custom rom on my phone to have access to trading. So for me Essential is defintiely "essential" otherwise i cant get online to trade.

    My guess is IQ Essential will be a replacement for IQ Web as HTML 5 becomes more ubiquitous. At least that is what i can see after reading this indepth review.

  10. Sandwich Monster

    I just tried and successfully was able to use IQ Essential and IQ Mobile on my tablet and so I am a bit confused as to why the need for both platforms? Why not just one or the other? Anyone know?

  11. Stacey Spriggs

    There is so much advice out there but to narrow things down opening a TFSA in Questrade basically means you wish to use it to trade stocks, ETFS but any gains you make are not taxed by CRA. A regular account isn't so lucky (in terms of realized capital gains). It really depends on what you want to do. TFSA has its own restrictions like any withdraws can't be contributed back into the accoutn again until the next year (Canada nationwide rule for this type of account).

    Questrade appears to be the best for low cost, no silliness trading and this $50 questrade offer code helps tremendously for new comers since you can do a lot of trades on the house

  12. John

    Been with Questrade for four months now and wanted to return to this questrade reivew to give my mini review.

    I am not a person with a lot of words but i actually like them. They offer everything i am looking for and their trade tool (IQ as they call it) is very good, especially the one i keep using called IQ Essential.

    My only complaint is that i wish their Live Help representatives were a bit more responsive but maybe it's because of the Holiday season and they are getting more order requests. So its not a big deal but wanted to point it out.

    So, thanks so much Canadian Profiteer. You guys really helped put my mind at ease in this financial world.

  13. Terell Lansing

    To go one step further to your post Cookie Muncher just remember that there are free routes also available that one can use to avoid all ECN fees entirely; so you can just place it as a market order and not bother with making it a limit order. Questrade has all the free routers: MNGD, POST, and LAMP. Check out their ecn fees.

  14. Bruce

    I'm here because i am sick of Trade Freedom. Their customer service is bad and i am always on hold so i am giving Questrade a try because i need a new outlet. I've tried calling them and they were very quick so that is good. Based on the popularity of this questrade review i will join and use the $50 promo code and see how things go.

  15. Cookie Muncher

    @David you didn't mention there are those tiny ECN fees but then it occurred to me that if one were to perform limit orders there won't be ECN or other fees to contend with.

  16. Lars C

    Actually, as long as you have all ur debt paid off then a quality ETF is ready and waiting with your name on it. Most people think ETFs track equities but that isn't always true. For those conservative types i think its best with a diversified collection of bond ETFs.

    Granted you may need to buy a multitude of different holdings but with the questrade offer code i see mentioned above on this site you can alievate any hesitation in purchases since its free.

  17. Devyn

    I can't believe i am going to join merely because this $50 offer code is staring me in the face. Can't resist

  18. Edwin Lipscomb

    You should read the above questrade review again because it specifically says that transfering USD funds from a USD account via ETF is not possible due to Canadian restrictions. However, you should be able to do it through say P-re-authorized Deposit initiated at Questrade within your member's account, among other ways. Just read the review again for the details.

  19. Federico B

    @David, it still amazes me that no other discount broker seems to want to compete against questrade in this area on pricing. Thanks for the informative post.

  20. David Del Grande

    Hi everyone. I work for Questrade and want to clarify any confusion.

    Questrade's stock commission pricing is $0.01/share as indicated above in this review. It's a minimum charge of $4.95 and a max of $9.95.

    So some examples:

    #of shares – commission
    100 shares – $4.95
    470 shares – $4.95
    510 shares – $5.10
    650 shares – $6.50
    883 shares – $8.83
    975 shares – $9.75
    1,100 shares – $9.95
    15,782 shares – $9.95

    We have the lowest commission pricing in all of Canada. Hope that helps!

  21. Malakai R

    I thank you for this questrade review seeing as how i was coming here trying to find answers on how to switch my paper notifications of my holdings to be electronic instead. I didn't realise Investor Delivery was related to how i did that. I wish i knew earlier.

    So much thanks for a time saver.

  22. Luciano B

    Thanks for the questrade offer code. Wasn't sure to join but the $50 was the decider for us. Have a great day!

  23. Wally Woodall

    Great review you got here! Plan on switching to questrade next week.

  24. Mximo Ross

    @josh: i heard about this too. One of their customer representatives. They made it live already.

    It should make settlement and record keeping much faster. Recall that Penson Financial Services also served as their bank transfering unit. So by self-clearing we should be able to add more of the other banks that currently arent showing up for pre-authorized deposits.

    This is one of those big deals no one is talking about sadly.

  25. No

    It's a really quite simple process @Joe and something that is talked about thoroughly in the questrade review above. You merely need to set your account to settle in trade currency.

    Most Questrade accounts (including registered) are actually sub-accounts that can hold both CAD and USD currency.

  26. Josh

    Just got word that Questrade is finally dropping their ties with Penson and becoming their own self-clearing service. All i can say is: Finally!

  27. Tavish Milner

    Confirmation post — $50 questrade offer code given above is real and worked for me. My deposits came in the next day! Woohooo!!!

  28. Jaymes

    Anyone know if they plan on integrating Mutual Fund Centre within IQ because right now i notice and it feels distinctly separate and inside myQuestrade. I tend to trade funds and so having it inside IQ would help tremendously instead of having to switch over to another window.

  29. Manav Fancher

    All this time i tought Questrade was QTrade. Seems they are two different brokerage firms. Huh? I am glad i found this. I guess my mind is made up after reading this questrade review. Huge insight i never knew about them.

  30. Anwar

    I wish IQ Essential could change the color scheme like it does for IQ Edge and Web. The gray look is nice but some times it gets boring and i want a Black theme to it.

  31. Steven Jensen

    I didn't realize i could sign up for a new account and while waiting create a practice IQ account. That's pretty good. Very useful!

  32. Bruno

    Very extensive questrade review people! Wow! I was expecting only a few lines and BOOM i get the whole spread! Presents have arrived! ROFL!!

    Much appreciated.

  33. Eugenio

    Ahh shucks! You shouldn't have. This questrade review is mindboggling in its clarity and depth. Probably not necessary for the vast vistors who read it. At least you aren't one of those reviews like for movies that make you read the whole thing before you can decipher if it was good or not. roflmao!

    Yea so you guys did a kick-ass job here. I will become a member this week especially with that questrade offer code in hand

  34. Mackenzi

    Goofing around with IQ Mobile on iPhone and Android and it feels like more effort was placed in the iPhone experience.

  35. Dino Gajowski

    For the person asking regarding specific currency thing and dont quote me but if you hold CAD currency and want to buy US securities it is automatically converted to US$ and the security is bought. Because of buying power if the purchases take a day to convert you just assume it is bought on your margin buying power.

    Now if the equity gets sold in the currency of that equity (e.g. selling US equity in US$) an another process is made where it then converts it to CA$ and you are back to where you started. Don't quote me on this. I found it on their site somewhere.

  36. Shante

    I still cant get out of my head the idea of stock trading and how it differs from say something like online poker. Strange field. I am 18 and keep getting advice from family that i should learn to invest but just too paranoid about investing my money in stocks out of fear i will lose it.

    I should (and do plan) to read many investing books but its funny that even experts with 50+ years experience still seem like throwing darts at a board.

    At least with these Questrade fellas i can ensure i am not going to be taken on some fees ride that i would see with other companies. So i guess when i am ready i will return this questrade review and open an account then.

  37. Debenture Trading God

    Just signed up and having a peak in my new account to familarize myself. Looks cool! I was a bit unsure but i think i am going to enjoy this place. I haven't tried out their trading platforms yet so i am relying on the details here. Can't wait to start trading!

  38. King T.

    Thanks for the $50 questrade offer code! Was in desparate need for one tonight.

  39. Deven M.

    I'm an Options trader and you've got my attention. I'll be back to read more later. Good work.

  40. Julie in LOVE

    Okay i joined Quest trade and wanted to give a heads up to newbies. It took me two days in total to go from not knowing who they were to being able to trade. The longest part was actually getting my bank to transfer in the minimum $1,000 to fund the account.

    It was amazingly quick and super easy.
    Lots of love for this questrade review! I've sent it off to my contacts on Facebook and Twitter!

  41. Feisty404

    All these years with Questrade and i never realized i could look to Limit my orders to avoid ECN fees. Sure that fee is tiny to non-existent (1/16th of a penny for my case on average) but still. I think your site is the only place i have ever read that mentions this unique but useful money saver. Surprised thank you!

  42. Capn' Crunch

    Okay i am signing up right now and its funny i can't think of a user ID that hasnt been taken. It's crazy! They must have a lot of members if the last 10 ids i've picked have been taken

    Had to resort to using my full name with random #s at the end. LOL!

  43. Stocks & Bonds Holder

    Wow, all these years being with them i never realised they had TFSA accounts until i read this questrade review. How dumb of me.

    Right now my TFSA is with a credit union but i think it makes more logical sense to have it as a trading account since i can earn (potentially) more through cap gains.

  44. Cayden Landreth

    Hi my fellow Canadian questraders! Still in the process of signing up and making the necessary transfers from my other discount broker. I couldnt resist using the questrade promo code and no fees. I have been getting abused by my old broker and so i said ok lets do this.

    Hmm, i just realized i would like to have my mother on my account and ability to sign on through this one account you know like having authorized users for credit cards. I will have to talk to questrade some time next week to see if i can make this happen.

  45. Elisha Soverns

    I just turned 19 and this review was pretty good after reading it all. I plan on joining but i dont know my Social Insurance Number. Is it mandatory to have it or can i provide another form of id? I guess i can call the government to find it out or something. I will look up and see what to do. I'll be back.

  46. Duncan

    I'm purely interesting in joining because there aren't too many places that offer IPO's especially at a low cost rate. I will have to give them a call to see what they have to offer. My hope is they offer US IPOs too, not just Canadian. Anyway i really, really am indepted for the hard work put into this writing.

  47. Eat Your Oats!

    Funny that i discovered this questrade review by desparately looking for an answer as to why i wasnt able to add questrade in EasyWeb bank account. I think you guys are doing an amazing job keeping this thread so current because i never knew i could ignore the extra digits. That goes a long way because i can now add them into my accounts, not just at TD.

    Thumbs up to everyone!

  48. Asa Force

    I did a thorough look around and yea this $4.95 per trade is the cheapest i could find. Good enough for me. Questrades got a new customer.

  49. Ishaan

    Questrade IQ Mobile app is an awesome start and hopefully it will continue to improve over the coming months. Some nice new additions would be include charts and support 2-step credentials. Yes i know questrade and for that matter most sites dont support 2-step but it would be nice since questrade is moving towards mobile too. Anyway, again its a great start and just hooking up with questrade to get at mobile is more than worth it. I still have $20 of my questrade promo code so i am living it up! :P

  50. Mickey V.

    Thanks for the social icons. I tweeted this beast out to my followers.

  51. Zebediah S.

    ROFL. You know your questrade review is too detailed when you start getting into a discussion ont he underlying coding methodology (c++) being used by its trading platforms. I love it! Thumbs up bro!

  52. Eshan Rubner

    I came here after not knowing what democratic pricing meant. lol! Dummy me i know. Well after reading this thick review i now understand. I will probably hook up with them in a few days

  53. Umberto Van Emburgh

    I am also a buy and hold investor and was looking for a place like Questrade to park. I will admit that in time i will likely become more active and so i like to be the one who decides when that happens.

    First-rate work!

  54. Alani Marshall

    It's funny that i learned more about IQ Essential through this amazing questrade review than i did from their actual site. Bookmarking this page for future reference.

  55. Leland

    Actually @crumpstump if you read this questrade review you will notice it says that all accounts will remain active and open if you keep at least $250 in equity so even though you hadnt used your account for nearly a decade it is reasonable to think it would be fine.

    However, i dont think you can grandfather your account into using the questrade offer code for the $50 in free trades. I think you will need to open a new account or potentially have to start a new application independent of your current account. Best way is to speak to their representative to see what your options are. Better to be safe and find out info.

  56. crumpstump

    Honestly, i didn't realize Questrade was still around. I was with them some 8 years ago and never really used my account. I only found out they existed by stumbling onto this Questrade review from a social bookmark site

    Ok i just checked and noticed my questrade account is still working. Huh? Well that is nice to see i didnt get charged anything to have it sitting around. I totally forgot about it. Hey, can i make use of this questrade promo code/offer code thingy or is it for only new members? Seeing as how i havent used my account for years i guess i could just create a new account and use the promo code?!?

  57. Darragh Rockefeller

    I've used Internet Explorer and i can say although IQ works perfectly with it i notice that this trading platform runs much faster in Firefox, and Chrome. So i recommend everyone skip Safari and IE and use FF and Chrome instead. Just my objective analysis if that helps

  58. Aaron T

    Thanks for the IQ Essential videos. I wish their were more videos though.

  59. Luis Whitaker

    I applaud the comprehensiveness to this questrade review. I was looking for some information on IQ Essential since their reps weren't being too helpful and this place really quenched my curiosity.

    Merci!

  60. Darby Beecher

    Thank god for their essential package. I dont have a computer but use a Sun OS system here at school and so i can only use that trading platform. Great work here guys!

  61. Jamarion R.

    Thanks for putting the links of this questrade review at the bottom for accessibility. I keep returning here and so it was getting tiring hunting down parts i had read before…that is until i realized you grouped all the linsk together. lol

    My husband and I are strongly leaning on joining questrade. We're hoping this questrade offer code will be good for two of us if we open a joint account ($100?). If not i guess we will open separate ones. Best wishes.

  62. Deshaun

    I wish IQ would allow me to change the coloring in their mobile app. Other than that its descent. I've been banging my head for a mobile version to make trades for years now so i shouldn't whine too much

  63. Afton Pinerton

    Was put on hold for a bit with them so i decided to do a search online and it pointed me to this questrade review which answered my question as i was on the phone. lol. So thanks very much. I've shared this with a few buddies of mine on Facebook.

  64. Mitchell S

    I wholehartedly agree with this review entirely! Brilliant analysis! I've been trying to decide on a place to start investing through and i hope my concerns have been answered.

    A big hi-O from PEI!

  65. Ramn

    It's funny because as an American i found this review as a hopeful alternative to my options here in Colorado. I will give these guys a call tomorrow and see what i need to join. Fantastic write up from a fellow down south.

  66. Armand Heider

    @Varment: Fret not young son. As it appears you still have the option of using the full range of iq online through your webbrowser if you have access to the Silverlight mono plugin for linux (or whatever its name is for your system).

    You can even read above in this questrade review that a thing called IQ Essential is looming on the horizon and should quell the pain by removing all need for the plugin and goes all html5. So it will be as universal as it gets. Hope that helps ya.

  67. That Dang Varment!

    Been a long time Linux user so i am a bit disappointed that after reading here that IQ collection isn't made for Linux boxes too even though its clear they were aiming at a wider audience by targetting OSX and Windows systems. Ah well.

  68. Jair

    Be careful #maximus, if you are only planning on being with them so you can take advantage of some promotional offer without understanding how the stock market works you just might lose more than the free money they are handing out.

    However, if you are deligent in your research before you invest (e.g. reading prospectuses, analysing charts) then have at it.

    Just my meaningless advice.

  69. Maximus

    Can i just open a questrade account and just use this 50 bux questrade promo code to get the cash and close it down? That would be sweet! LOL

  70. Tygarian Dragon

    Ok yea so i admit i am enjoying the transition into Questrade IQ more than i was seeing as how i was very vocal about leaving behing the older trading platform. I still wish they would allow me to select to go back to it but whatever.

    I am pleased they are regularly adding new features so that is good. I had feared that they would just update it once and forget about it for years. So far i average about a new update every week. Awesome!

  71. Foxtrot Penny Pincher

    @nana, you aren't alone in your thinking. You didn't mention if you are a member or not but I joined questrade about a year ago after reading this review and its been a good trek over from my bank (which i won't name out of fear i might get punished).

  72. Yamin

    Ahhh just discovered after reading this questrade review that my browser wasn't up to date to support questrade iq. Woops! I always assumed Safari would update by itself. Had been using Safari v2 for years and never realized it. Thanks for the quick mention of the browsers required. I'm gone.

  73. Nana V.

    One of the biggest surprises I have is that Questrade is still the only real alternative for us as Canadians who want to keep costs down and have an enjoyable experience. Why must i pay $19.99 to make a simple trade with TD Waterhouse and then get charged ongoing fees each month when i can just join Q and sit and watch my investments grow at no cost?

  74. Adrien A.

    Questrade promo code FTW! That is all.

  75. Infant Weekley

    For everyone thinking of joining or are members of Questrade then one helpful advice for new investors:

    Consider Dollar Cost Averaging (DCA)! It's really simple. It involves averaging your investments over a long stretch of time which better helps to lower the risk due to market uncertainties.

    When i was young i wish someone had made me aware of DCA. So i wanted to share it in this popular place.

    ciao

  76. Charlie Siefert

    Had issues with my bank in financing my new questrade account after coming across questrade in this questrade review and they had problems allowing me to enter my questrade account numbers. Pretty frustrating.

    Was coming here to put up some advice on how to work around for RBC but dummy me maybe i missed it i didnt realize this review covered the possiblity of account # sizes. Sheesh. So anyway props for this review.

  77. Stevie Haygood

    finally a promo code that works!

  78. William Mesler

    Hmm..i was coming in with a different opinion but reading this review i am warming to questrade. So i apprechiate the information.

  79. Ewan

    Call me crazy but i feel my Blackberry is now looked on as a pariah in this business world. Case in point — Questrade and their new Questrade IQ Mobile and how we blackberries will supposedly betting our app in late fall, if at all Well i guess that is the business. I love my blackberry so i am a bit hestiant to hook up with questrade.

    I need mobile access since i am on the go a tun. Yea so i will put questrade on hold here but will bookmark this questrade review and check back to see if they have blackberry later in the year. Cheers.

  80. Norman Labush

    Okay so this questrade offer code will give me $50 in free trades but can i like wait later in the year after signing up or must i use it now. But knowing all businesses one would need to use it right away. I guess i will hold off joining questrade until i am ready. Hope this questrade promo code doesnt expire. Thanks for a mighty good job in this review people.

  81. Options Level Mike

    Been playing with IQ Edge and their web version for a week now to get a feel before considering the idea of becoming a member. In summation its descent. At least for me who is an average investor (i have a day job and only look to invest my excess in a Dollar Cost Averaging strategy).

    I use to be with TD Waterhouse and left and have been a bit of a nomad ever since. This looks like a pretty good place to park so i will break down this review some more and have a little chat with them on the phone before i make up my mind.

    My thanks for the hard work.
    Michael

  82. Sam I Am

    I understand the security issues by not allowing one to have open and log into more than one IQ platform at once but it still would be nice since i like to have my account open on my laptop and my smartphone at the same time as i walk around the house and jump back on my computer when my alerts kick in. Anyone know if they will allow for that in future releases?

  83. Darrion Sallee

    Not a big fan of this whole gambling thing that they call stock trading. Been more person who would rather do prudent investing in more safer endevaors like government bonds and high-interest savings. Based on what i am reading in this questrade review there isn't much in terms of fees so maybe i should just open an account and let it sit around in case i change my mind. I figure if i ever change my mind i dont have to go through the hassle of opening and waiting for verification or whatever is done. l8r

  84. Linux Mighty Mouse

    Questrade IQ Essential appears to be what i am looking for since i have a Ubuntu linux box and so being told i will need Microsoft Silverlight or a PC just to be able to trade stocks is not an option. So i laud them for the rest of us who are interested in joining but couldn't until now.

    I am using it right now in their practice account after becoming a member (still being processed but i signed up today) and it's quite lovely.

  85. Stetson

    NASDAQ has been doing very well this year (topping 2000's size)

    Might be time for me to jump in and seeing i can make some cash. Shout out to the pros who put this questrade review together. Never would have considered them if it wasnt for my buddy emailing me this link. And now i've got that questrade promo code for $50..hehehe.

  86. Jos T

    I have an account with Scotia iTrade and although i am happy being with them i am not thrilled by the constant charges i am seeing on my monthly statements. So this is why i am roaming around for a new discount brokerage.

    I'm bookmarking this review because something tells me my patience will have enough and i will be hooking up with this place instead. Super job in writing this. It'll be very helpful in the future for me.

  87. StocksKing

    Just got my first smartphone and using questrade's iq mobile for the first time as pointed out by this questrade review — which until then i hadnt heard about it (no email from questrade..go figure).

    I've used eTrade and they've had mobile functionality for a while so i will be back here in a while to give my review on it. I dont want to say much so i can be fair.

  88. Tristen M

    Thanks for the promo code! This was the thing that put me over the top to join.

  89. Damian Clampitt

    Thanks for the iq edge information steve. Because IQ Edge needs access to the Internet one shouldn't forget that it's possible a network port that Edge needs that is being blocked by the router. So i recommend people open the needed ports for IQ Edge. I don't know if this is true nor what the port(s) may be since i only use IQ Web online. But if anyone is having problems let me know.

  90. Drayden S.

    Thanks for the advice in this questrade review about using a limit order in cases. I dont think most people know about this trick that can be work at all discount brokers. Anyway, i am so impressed by the detail you've given to questrade i might just join to look around. Regards and a big hay from Vancouver!

  91. s@m

    I personally think not having a native 64-bit applicationfor IQ Edge is not a big deal at all. 64-bit is overrated. Granted, i am no geek who looks to overclock every last unnoticeable performance out of everything i really dont think anyone will ever notice any kind of difference in speed terms between questrade's current 32-bit release and any future 64-bit version. I am using a 64-bit firefox called waterfox and it has no speed performance gain over 32-bit firefox.

    And doing intense math calculations isnt going to be happening in questrade iq that requires 64-bit. At most having descent memory size like 2GB-4GB is all you need. Btw thanks for the questrade offer code. It was sweet..ended up joining.

  92. Steve Oh

    Just a friendly and helpful tip for anyone using IQ Edge. I was having issues getting it to run on my computer at home since it would only work on my office system.

    I found out that because i dont have administrator priviledes on my computer at home it wouldnt install properly. So the best way to get around this is to download Questrade's ZIP IQ Edge version and run it as a stand alone. You can even put it on an flash memory or other external drive device. That way it doesnt try to install files that may need extra priviledges.

    One mistake i made was try to get the zip file in office and when i got home it didnt work still. I found out the zip file was set against our company profile. So to resolve this i had to email the zip file to myself from my office email to make it an acceptable attachment and the program then worked great.

  93. Man of the House

    I'm not a wealthy man but i know what i want and that is to see as much as of my money that i put into my investment account being used towards what is important to me which is my original investments.

    I was tired of being with RBC Bank because they kept charging me outlandish adminstration fees for everything. Even a fee for transfering funds between accounts held at the same bank. That is rediculous.

    So i applaud you here for writing a well meaning review on questrade. It's something that i've taken to heart and have made my last trade at RBC.

  94. Denis Henry

    A friend of mine sent me this Questrade Review from Twitter and thought i'd check it out. Holy cow! It has more information than i ever imagined. Had to give my thanks for the rad job!

  95. Shannon G

    You know i assumed that Questrade IQ Mobile was for iPhone users only and was thinking not to bother considering these guys since i do a lot of my activity on my phone these days but by accident i came here and read it supports Android too. Huh? After some extra research just now i can see i was mistaken and yes indeed it is for my phone os. I guess they must have released it after i was originally looking around. I should have checked the Play store. Whoops!

  96. Travis Mead

    Just shared this questrade review on Google+. Was planning on just joining questrade based on my friend's advice but figured i should read a review before i did. Glad i did. Now i have $50 questrade offer code :). Woohoo!

  97. Jorge

    Thanks for the awesome review here. That IQ Essential platform got me intrigued i played with the practice account on my Mac. It's pretty responsive and fast! I really like it!

    I wanted to have a spin with the broker before considering the option of being a member and everything i've read here and on their site looks very promising.

  98. Drummer Boy

    @devon121 if you are referring to questrade iq and its "Dark Theme" look as seen in the images in this questrade review then if you read closely the review points out that you can switch over to a "Light Theme" which i would imagine is closer to white, and possibly what you are looking for.

    From my experience most people prefer a darker theme because it puts more contrast emphasis on the numbers on screen. I certainly prefer the default dark appearance. Much better than questraderweb taht is for sure.

  99. Reese R

    Horray! Am using the new IQ Mobile release and was having problems with it on iPhone 4S. Seems to be fixed now since i am writing this comment here. The world is at peace again.

  100. BuddaRyme

    Hi everyone! Been a long time trader and recently joined this discount broker. Overall i am pleased with them. I was a bit disappointed briefly when i found out that IQ Edge donesnt currently support options strategies like trading spreads but after speaking to them online (thanks for the link here) they eased my concerns by saying that this more advanced type of trading was in the works and coming soon. So i wanted to share that with you all. Have a good day.

  101. KittKatz

    LOL, i can't believe someone remembers Penson Financial. I use to be with questrade a long time back and so kudos to whoever wrote this questrade review in bringing back the memories. Good riddence to Penson. Questrade is much better without them. Wonderful review btw. I am already a questrade member but if i do find someone looking to start trading i will point them to this review in the future.

  102. Dean Blanton

    Will this questrade offer code for $50 in free trades work for someone who is 17 years old or must i be at least 18+? I am very interested in practicing with stocks and this seems good.

  103. Nol B.

    Hey josh. Although Questrade allows US citizens to open accounts with them there might be some issues if you are a US resident. I get the impression you live in Canada so that wont be a problem.

    As for your question about registered accounts i believe they are solely for CRA-backed registered accounts. So in short: No, i don't think 401Ks will work with this broker's registered accounts. You can try their help desk to get more info though since i might be wrong.

  104. Josh

    As the end of the year approache im planning on joining Questrade solely to open up a registered account for my RESP contributions since i have never contributed ever.

    I'm a dual citizenship holder (US Citizen too) and was thinking i should contribute to my 401K through this too. is that possible or are there registered accounts only for Canadian registered accounts?

  105. Nigel Ring

    The most intriguing I learned reading this questrade review about questrade is the ability to simultaneously hold a Canadian and U.S. account.

    I've been trading for several years now with other providers and i have never seen this anywhere else and its quite shocking. I think others dont do it because lets face it they want to get a cut on the conversions each time.

    This alone can save a trader huge amounts of fees over the long term. Good job questrade.

  106. Stocks Bonds and the Love of Money

    @brian i think your logic is a bit dated and backwards. Why would you want to stay in the past and not shift gears into a more modern age. I personally appreciate that Questrade trashed their old platforms and decided to have a single one to remove the confusion. I've used every IQ tool and its very good. I find that the people who are complaining about it are only those prior members who've used the trading tools before IQ showed up.

    If you use IQ long enough you will find you don't want to go back to their older ones. I should know i've been with these guys since they opened shop here in Canada.

  107. Yakir

    I'm still paying about $35 per trade with TD. They have a plan for $7.95 but the catch is i have to make an ungodly amount of trades per month before i can even come close to getting a rebate back for 7.95 per trade so its pretty lousy.

    I will have to put more thought but questrade may be for me. I will hold onto this questrade coupon code or offer code or whatever its called for later. thnx

  108. Brians High-5

    Why bother to move away from QuestraderWEB and QuestraderELITE and QuestraderPRO? Looking at the pictures in this review they looked pretty capable and their new IQ stuff looks like it is starting all over again. Yea it does look more thought out (the IQ stuff) but for those who've gotten use to the other platforms we should still be given the option to opt out of IQ and reuse our favorite old ones.

  109. DuoMuo

    I'm a returning visitor here to let you know my experience with Questrade now that i've been with them for a few months now.

    Awesome stuff! So this questrade review is spot on. So thanks from the both of us for finding us a great broker for our business.

    Cheers.

  110. Stone

    Thank god they didn't use Flash and instead went with Silverlight. I despise flash. I still use an old computer and every time i visit things like YouTube or whatever that uses it my fans start going nuts and my cpu is burning at 100%. Fuuu! So thank you!

  111. Sarah

    I still don't know why there are some people who take a lead pipe to Questrade. From what i gather because their transaction costs are the lowest in Canada and from my experience they have pretty good customer support on the phone, online, in forums, and pretty good trade platforms for my computer and online i get the impression that these complainers are more whiners because they want more.

    I've been with Questrade for a few years and they've been perfect for me.

  112. Lionel

    I am not sure its been said or maybe i missed it in this questrade review but it would be nice if there was an offline version to myQuestrade and/or Questrade IQ.

    Some of us have limited internet access and so it would be nice to do our work offline and when access is back online it sends the requests to perform (queued if you will).

  113. Justin G.

    Ok it's a very rainy day in my area of Canada and so i decided i should just come here, make some green tea, and start working my way through this thick questrade review. I'm enjoying it so far. I've never owned a stock trading account before so this might convince me to join questrade. Bonus points for the questrade offer code.

    Honestly, i just assumed to go with my local bank since it was an all-in-one thing. Never realized how bad an idea that potentially can be. Especially for new comers.

  114. Lyle

    Hey @Nana thanx for the details on iq essential. I was scratching my head on all the different options. I will admit my eyes are still a bit glazed over on the reasonings for keeping iq mobile and the rest if iq essential is around but at least you helped demystify the beast.

  115. Nana44

    Just a heads up for everyone…

    The reviewer of this questrade article is spot on about iq essential. Was speaking to their CSR today to help decipher the difference between all their platforms and they indeed said it is a non-install web platform.

    From what i gather IQ Essential is made specifically for tablets, PCs, Macs, and Linux users in mind. So there is no need for special plugins like Flash or Silverlight. It is a works-out-of-box thing.

    It's also accessibly through your mobile devices and adapts its size to the native display of that device.

    They admit that they are moving away from Silverlight (and the use of Flash) entirely and geering up for HTML5 100%. So in many respects IQ Essential is what everything will be shifting to in the future wihle IQ Mobile and IQ Web are placeholders for the time being to allow the rest of the market to catch up (adopt browsers with full HTML5 support).

    IQ Essential is also available to be tested by anyone right now while in beta they told me.

  116. Nigel Q

    I commend you guys in this questrade review in making note of several questrade historical descisions like their use of Pension or the use of 6-digit accounts. Although its the past it gives me a better idea of who they are as a company.

    It looks like they are getting more and more serious about quality output so i strongly am considering joining them now.

  117. Emmett Platt

    I was using IQ Edge on my desktop via dual monitors and became a bit frustrated when my monitor when caput and couldnt get back the display on my original monitor and was directed here because it seems others was talking about IQ Edge too. And so thanks for thelp. I didn't realize Windows had a settings feature to change the desktop layout that allowed me to fix my iq problem. Just had to write something to say thanks. That's it.

  118. Shaun Loyd

    I'm here only for the questrade offer code. I need my $50. But i'll read this questrade review when i have a chance some time next week so thanks.

  119. CC-Factory

    I am not going to lie i miss questraderWEB. I've been trying to get use to the new iq model but maybe i am old and so stubborn to change or i just am a dummy. Yes i know its more advanced and offers more functionality than their older trading platform and for new people it will be a dream come true but i prefer to stick to the things i know.

    I think i will call customer service and see if they can hook me up with my past preference.

  120. Sterling B.

    Will you guys be adding more details to the IQ Mobile section of this questrade review? I hear IQ Mobile is released and it will be nice to get even more in depth information about it and a mini review about it.

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