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Which Discount Brokerage to use?

7580 Views 16 Replies 13 Participants Last post by  Izzy
I am new to stock trading and looking to open an account online with one of the many discount brokerage firms. I will only be trading canadian equities to start and probably not executing many trades to qualify as an active trader. I will start with a few thousand dollars. I really dont want to go with the big banks as fees and commisions are really high. My 2 questions are 1)Which discount broker would best suit my direction and 2)-Should i open a TFSA if i deposit under $5000 in my account?:
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re the Globe and Mail's recent ranking of online brokers:

a disgrace. Journalist Carrick has held a grudge against the big Green for many years, never granting TDW the leadership position they routinely enjoy in other polls and, this year, bizarrely dumping the Green into # 6 slot.

if this were panama or peru one would assume that the journalist had been bribed. But it's canada, so we have to presume that Carrick thought he knew what he was doing.

even more bizarre is the # 3 rating given to bmo investorline. What is Carrick thinking of. BMO doesn't even offer real-time quotes, except by single quote on the order entry platform or except to elite clients. BMO's watch list is primitive, while their efforts to sell the super-expensive streamer - and they intend a hard-core sell, for payment, although the streamer is presently being offered to BMO's elite clients for free - these efforts are surely going to crash. Trade faster, easier, cheaper at TDW or TDWATP, IB, ITrade, Questrade.
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re journalists' broker ratings "hopefully not based on any external rewards ..."

zero chance of any extenal rewards. The globe and mail's rob carrick is a top-ranked canadian journalist with the highest possible standards. No one will ever know what possessed him to construct the bizarre online broker rankings that he did a few weeks ago. He was using a sub-contracted outside survey source, so perhaps that is what led him astray. I don't always agree with carrick's views, but this rating - along with his previous annual discounters' ratings for the past few years - is the only time i've ever seen his judgment go berserk.

problem is that globe & mail is widely read & widely respected, so these ratings are misleading a lot of people.

this globe online broker survey does present a full list, with the omission of Interactive, and many will find the individual commentaries useful even if the individual ratings are bizarre. Rationale for omitting IB, apparently, is that it doesn't offer a rrsp.
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