- Low minimum deposits
- Near perfect IQ Edge platform
- Greatly improved customer service
- Free research tools
- Top of the line security
- An excess of extra features
- Mobile platform is sluggish and needs improvement
Selecting a broker is one of the most daunting tasks for a new investor. Why?
Nobody wants to be stuck in an agonizing relationship.
- Bad customer service
- high commissions
- unresponsive platforms
These are just a few of the problems bad brokers present for traders and investors alike.
This is especially true when you are just beginning to learn how to buy stocks. When you’re a beginner, you need a platform that works seamlessly to avoid any unnecessary road blocks that can be detrimental to your progression.
This is why we have decided to publish this Questrade review, and offer a great Questrade promo code to get you started.
There is always a market leader that does all the right things to cleanly and clearly separate itself from the crowd. Who would that be in the world of discount brokers?
Questrade. without question.
Questrade is the leader in the discount brokers market. We receive tons of questions on this broker, which is why we decided to do a Questrade review. Alas, such an analysis is needed as it could be the case that Questrade is at the top not due its capabilities, but due to the shortcomings of its competitors.
Before we begin: Questrade Promo Offer Code
The barrier to entry has reduced even more with our $50 Questrade promo code. If you were worried that you didn’t have enough investment capital to get started in the markets, combine our promo code with some commission free ETFs from Questrade and get started with as much as you want! When commissions aren’t eating away at your returns, it’s easy to invest with any dollar amount you wish.
How did Questrade come to fruition?
At this point in time, you may be curious about Questrade’s path to the top. Let us explain!
Questrade was established in 1999, a time when almost every broker worldwide would charge a pretty penny for the services that they provide.
In such a market, Questrade came in with a double pointed approach of lower commissions and better service.
This is something that was unheard of before. In the following years, Questrade won top honors from the likes of The Globe and Mail, MoneySense Magazine, and Deloitte annual rankings. Questrade also took home Canada’s best-managed company award for several years.
Not being part of the big banks was propitious to Questrade. It allowed Questrade to be nimble and agile. This allowed them to access a market which was previously a playground for the rich and famous only. It’s agility also allowed quick reaction to the ever changing market and provide certain investment opportunities (such as ETFs) before the big banks.
**NOTE** Before we jump into this Questrade review, keep in mind that some programs are specifically geared towards trading, while others are designed for investing. To avoid any confusion we’ll just define the two:
Investing: Buying and selling securities with the intent of holding for extended periods of time. An example of this type of investor may be someone who invests long term in blue-chip dividend stocks.
Trading: Buying and selling securities with the intent of holding for only short periods of time, possibly weeks, but more so for only days or even hours. An example of this type of investor may be someone who trades penny stocks.
With that clarified we’ll continue. Here is everything you need to know about Questrade, one of the most attractive online discount stock brokerages available…
Our Questrade Review For 2018
Most investors start with good intentions and big dreams until the blood curdling sets in when it comes to creating their investment account.
Often due to cumbersome procedures, this can lead the strongest of the strong-willed investors off their path and cause them to dump their dreams into the demoralized investors landfill.
Even worse, some may just scurry to their bank and murmuringly accept the high fees charged in exchange for the convenience that comes with opening an account where you already have a checking account.
– Account Types & Deposit Options
– American clients or Canadians looking for USD
– Questrades amazing dual currency system
– Questrade account minimums for 2018
QUESTRADE PORTFOLIO IQ
– Questrades Portfolio IQ’s portfolios
– Questrades Portfolio IQ allocation
– Questrades Portfolio IQ minimums
– Questrades Portfolio IQ account types
QUESTRADE COMMISSIONS FOR 2018
– Questrades active trader program
– Questrades commissions compared to other brokerages
– Questrades browser platform
– Questrades IQ Edge
– Questrades Mobile Platform
– Questrade FX Global
QUESTRADE CUSTOMER SERVICE
QUESTRADES EXTRA FEATURES
– Questrades forum
– Questrades webinars
– Research features
– Questrades blog
QUESTRADES ACCOUNT HISTORY AND RECORDS
– Questrade statements
– QUESTRADES IPO CENTRE
QUESTRADES APP HUB
Setting up an account with Questrade
When it comes to setting up an account Questrade is, however, a black swan in the world of discount brokers. The process is well thought out and keeps the end-user in mind.
The end result?
An uplifting experience for investors right at the onset. In fact, you can get acquainted with Questrades interface in just 2 minutes by signing up for a practice account. Or, if you’re interested in jumping right into the real deal, make sure to use our $50 Questrade promo code.
For the proper account, the setup process takes no more than 20 minutes. We highly recommend that you use the intuitive, streamlined and uncomplicated online setup process that Questrade provides.
The best part about it? DocuSign technology. All your documents can be electronically signed. Why is this so important?
Docusign leads to a reduction in unnecessary delays due to legality and incomplete information issues. Not to mention the fact that in today’s society of growing impatience, fast is king. Nobody wants to have to print out documents and mail them.
You’ll need four things over the course of your Questrade application:
- Social insurance number (SIN)
- Bank account information
- Employment details (or source of income if unemployed)
- Your beneficiaries information(if you want to appoint one)
- Our Questrade promo code rx4rbzmb for $50 in free trades
The first step is to create a user ID and password. Fortunately, this is a step above the old system where Questrade used your e-mail as the ID and sent you an autogenerated password. The new system is safer and allows the user to save an application and come back to it at a later stage if they are pressed for time.
Questrade account types and deposit options
In terms of the types of accounts, users can choose between Managed Investing or Self-Directed.
Self-Directed Accounts: This is when an investor wants full control over their portfolio and the assets it contains. Keep in mind that you are literally placing your financial future, or at least part of it if you have multiple investment accounts, in your own hands. Make sure you know what you’re doing! This method is by far the cheapest way of growing your wealth, as you are depending on nobody but yourself.
Managed Accounts: Just like your bank , Questrade has a team that can take control of your finances and make all investment decisions for you. Obviously, you know nothing in life is free, and this management comes with a cost. Albeit cheaper than a mutual fund, Questrade still charges anywhere from 0.7% to 0.97% of your investment portfolio to manage it. Ever hired a cleaner or someone to mow your lawn? Think of it that way. The convenience of having it done for you, but with a cost. And not to mention, you have zero control over the results.
What types of self-managed accounts can I open with Questrade?
Canadians have the option to option a large variety of accounts at Questrade, including the following:
- Organization Margin Accounts
- Tax-Free Savings Accounts (TFSA)
- Registered Retirement Savings Plans (RRSP)
- Registered Education Savings Plans (RESP)
- Locked-in Retirement Accounts (LIRA)
- Registered Retirement Income Funds (RIF)
- Life Income Funds (LIF)
- Fully Managed Accounts.
Lets look at Questrades deposit options
The pleasure ride with Questrade does not end there. They make life easy during the most important step of the process, the transfer of money. To begin there is a deluge of options to choose from which are mentioned below.
- Direct online deposit (EFT) – FREE
- Questrade’s auto-deposit – FREE
- Money order
- Non-certified cheque
- Stock certificates
- Certified cheque or bank draft
- Wire transfer
- Transfer from another brokerage (has to be under the same name)
In terms of time, the entire process of transfer is usually between 3 to 4 business days – this is only the first-time transfer.
After the initial deposit, further deposits using the same method typically take no longer than 2 business days.
Withdrawal times are different from deposit times and can take up to 3 days. Questrade often requires confirmation of identity and that you are the account holder where the withdrawal is going. To us this isn’t a hindrance rather a benefit. Your money is valuable to you, and the fact Questrade doesn’t let it go without strict protocol is relieving.
How does Questrade fare for US clients or Canadian clients looking to deposit USD?
Life will not be that much harder with Questrade for US based clients, or those who prefer to deal in USD.
Unfortunately, one cannot use the EFT method with Questrade to make deposits, but the reverse is possible. For cash deposits, you can setup a pre-authorized deposit agreement that takes 1-5 days to setup.
You can also send a cheque/bank draft, or use wire transfer. If the case arises that you want to convert to USD as fast as possible for instance to invest in a rare opportunity in the US, then you can use the built-in exchange funds tool that Questrade offers. This tool will take 24 hours to process but is faster than the other methods.
Questrades accounts run on dual currency
One of the best features about Questrade is their accounts, both registered and margin, have essentially a “purse” allocated for both USD and CAD. How exactly does this benefit you?
Well, if you are picking US stocks to invest in, you may be receiving US dividends. Most brokerages would simply take this US dividend, charge you a conversion fee and exchange rate, and deposit it into your account in CAD. This poses a problem, because an investor may be receiving multiple dividends at different dates from different companies. Why not simply wait until they are all issued, or a certain amount of money is hit in the USD account to convert?
This is what Questrade does. If you are issued a dividend in USD, Questrade will not convert it to CAD. Instead, they will place it into the USD sub account that every single account at Questrade has. You are now free to move money between these two accounts on your own will, but be aware that you will be charged a spread fee plus the current conversion rate.
What if I don’t want to do an online application?
There are some who aren’t technophiles and prefer to use the conventional method of signing up for an account i.e. using pen and paper. Questrade understands that and caters to that segment of the market. But beware, the process can take between 1 to 3 days if you take this route.
Questrade account minimums
With the sign-up complete the next logical question is, how much do I need to start investing or trading with Questrade?
Again, Questrade does not fail to impress. To go along with our $50 in free Questrade commissions, It’s account minimums are among the lowest in the industry. Below are the numbers for each of the account types.
Questrade minimum balance for 2018:
- $1000 CAD to purchase stocks and options
- $5000 CAD to trade options spreads
- $25000 CAD to get involved with uncovered options
Questrade Portfolio IQ
If you’re interested in managing your own finances, you will probably choose the self directed route. You are in control of your own fate, your doom or gloom is all dependent on you.
Some people may not be able to handle this. Whether it be a lack of skill, a lack of motivation or a lack of confidence, you may turn to someone else to make your investment decisions.
Typically, this has been big banks for a long time. However, more and more companies are emerging on the internet today that simply do it substantially cheaper than your banks, and for logical reasons. It’s cheaper to run a company over the internet than it is brick and mortar.
Questrade allows you to select from a list of portfolio options
As you can probably tell from the image above, getting started with Portfolio IQ is fairly simple. They leave you with one question to ask yourself and one question only:
“What is my risk tolerance?”
And the best part? You don’t even need to answer this yourself. Simply follow their questionnaire to determine your risk tolerance, and even if you deem it to be wrong, you can manually choose what portfolio you want.
After that, it is all on them. If you’re a young investor looking to make a little more cash now because you can withstand market swings, the aggressive growth portfolio may be for you. On the other hand, if you’re an older conservative investor who is approaching retirement, maybe the conservative portfolio may be your best bet.
Portfolio IQs portfolio makeup
If you’ve ever heard of a Robo-advisor, you probably know they typically deal in ETFs. Questrade is no different. They offer 5 different portfolios, like the ones listed above, and all offer a specific allocation of funds.
- Aggressive Portfolio: High risk. 98% Equity, 2% Cash
- Growth Portfolio: Medium-High risk. 80% Equity, 18% Fixed, 2% Cash
- Balanced Portfolio: Medium risk. 60% Equity, 38% Fixed, 2% Cash
- Income Portfolio: Low-Medium risk. 40% Equity, 58% Fixed, 2% Cash
- Conservative Portfolio: Low risk. 20% Equity, 78% Fixed, 2% Cash
For a more detailed explanation of these portfolios, head to their information page here. There is a little more to them than just what is invested in equity and what is invested in fixed income. You can even narrow it down to a specific allocation of assets they have in a current country.
Questrade Portfolio IQ account minimums
There is one exception, the Questrade Portfolio IQ Account, where you simply need $1 to open the account. Questrades Portfolio accounts are managed by Questrade themselves. But there is a catch here, you need to have at least $2000 to start investing. If the account balance ever goes below $1500, investments in the portfolio will be liquidated. Keep in mind that our Questrade referral code still works when opening a Portfolio IQ account! Click here to activate the offer.
With a Questrade Portfolio IQ, your fees will be dependant on how much you initially invest and hold in the account. With Portfolio IQ, you can open the following accounts:
There are a lot of benefits to Questrades Portfolio IQ account if you are not comfortable managing your own investment portfolio. These accounts have lower fees than traditional mutual funds, which can add up to substantial differences in investment returns over the long haul. Check out Questrades investment calculator to see how much you could save and more information on the Portfolio IQ accounts here.
Review Of Questrades Commissions in 2018
Commissions are indeed an important component when it comes to choosing a broker. And rightly so, as high commissions can take away from your pie and leave you feeling demoralized due to lower profits.
But demoralized and demotivation are words that are not associated with Questrade when it comes to their attractive commissions.
Their fees are among the lowest in the industry, and the reason Questrade captured the market share in the first place.
Below is a table that gives an idea of the current commissions at Questrade as of 2018.
|Type Of Security||Questrade Commission|
|Stocks||Penny a share. $4.95/$9.95 minimum and maximum|
|Options||$9.95 per trade + $1 a contract|
|Exchange Traded Funds||Free to purchase, selling $4.95/$9.95 minimum and maximums|
|Forex Trades||Calculated based off pips. View more here|
|Mutual Funds||$9.95 or $45 dollars via phone|
|Internation Stocks||Minimum $195, or 1% of trade|
|Bonds||Free if order is over $5000|
|IPOs||$9.95 on orders over $5000|
Such is our programming that whenever we are confronted with a purchase decision, our first thought is “what’s the price?”
Nothing wrong with that approach. In fact, the importance of a reasonable fee is accentuated to the nature of the stock market. You want to make sure that you retain the absolute most your capital so it can continue to compound for years to come instead of being eaten up by brokerage commissions.
As mentioned at the start of this article, Questrade was a disruption of the brokers market when it first started.
But what’s more impressive is that Questrade has not increased its commissions ever since. This serves as a true testament of their astute pricing strategy. Based on that fact, it is safe to say that Questrade is not planning any impending or forthcoming changes to their commission structure.
What exactly does this do for Questrade?
Well, first off, it encourages new investors to enter a market that was once dominated by people who had a surplus of cash. Previous commission costs of $20-30 a trade would eat up almost half of an investors expected yearly returns if they started out with $1000. Now, with Questrades commissions being dirt cheap, it barely makes a dent.
Questrades commission free ETFs are a huge winner
If you’re with a big bank like RBC, they are still unfortunately charging for the purchase of ETFs. With Questrades commissions, the purchase of ETFs are absolutely free. So hypothetically, a beginning investor could place their initial deposit in Questrade commission free ETFs, along with future deposits, and never have to pay a cent in fees for their portfolio.
Imagine that? Now, not all ETFs are commission free, so you’ll have to check. But the idea of paying nothing to start getting your money working for you is fairly enticing. Questrade was the first brokerage to offer something like this. Now, explain to me why a brokerage would take one of the most popular methods of investing and offer it for free? I’m not sure myself either, but it only spells good things for the company.
But these are only the basic commission charges at Questrade. If you are an active trader, Questrade has constructed custom plans for you to suit your needs and reduce your commissions.
Questrade Review 2018: Questrades Active Trader program
|Fixed Plan||Variable Plan|
|Stocks||$4.95 flat per trade||Minimum $0.01 to max of $6.95|
|Options||$4.95 + $0.75 per contract||$6.95 + $0.75 per contract|
|ETFs||Free to purchase. |
Sell for $4.95
|Free to purchase.|
Sell for $0.01 a share max $6.95
If you are a trader, you have the option to buy one of Questrades advanced commission packages. The package has two different pricing options, fixed or variable. Of course, you can purchase these plans as an investor, but you will come to realize that the fees just won’t be worth it if you don’t hit the minimum amount of trades.
A flat fee of $4.95 for every trade, regardless of the shares bought, or a flat fee of 1 cent per share. On top of that, traders must pay a monthly fee of $90 to acquire these options. That being said, these fees unlock the Questrade advanced marketing packages which allow traders to view quotes with no time-delays.
The best part about it, these fees can be fully rebated, meaning you unlock their advanced data packages AND cheaper commissions for essentially no extra cost. You just have to hit the required minimums that Questrade enforces listed in the table below.
|Monthly trading commissions paid||More than $48.95||More than $399.95|
|Final price after rebate||$70||FREE|
So how much cheaper are Questrade fees for traders compared to other brokers?
At first, these fees may seem a bit on the higher side, but rest assured they are a far cry from the exorbitant commissions that bank customers pay. As an example, RBC charges $9.95 per trade with the minimum going down to only $6.95 per trade. This difference of 2-3 dollars per trade adds up tremendously over time, ultimately leaving substantially less profits for you.
Questrades inactivity and transfer fees from other brokerages
Unfortunately, if you don’t make at least one commissionable trade each quarter or have less than $5000 in your account, Questrade will charge an inactivity fee equivalent to $24.95 per quarter.
And finally, an incentive for investors that already have an account with other brokerages, Questrade is willing to cover your transfer out fee that your current financial institution will charge.
Reviewing Questrades Platforms in 2018
The battlefield is littered with solutions some complicated and some with mangled interfaces that ultimately cause the user a lot of agony and frustration.
No matter how low the fees, if the user does not receive a good experience, they will throw in their gauntlet and switch to a more user-friendly option. Thus, it is imperative in this Questrade review that we look over the interfaces offered at a granular level.
Let’s start at the beginning before Questrade was what it is today.
Questrade was what would be termed as a laggard in the tech industry, it was slow to adapt and it’s platforms felt archaic, mundane, and cumbersome. Keep this in mind as one must be cognizant when reading online reviews, some may be talking about Questrade Pro, QuestradeWEB, or Questrade ELITE, these being the names of all the old platforms.
**There are a lot of outdated reviews of Questrade out there, and it is often one of the first thing users see when they are looking to open a brokerage. Do some research, and find when exactly these reviews were published.**
Anyways, back to the review.
Like any other intelligent company, Questrade took advantage of this situation. The moves on the chess board had already been used.
In other words, the knowledge base of what does or does not work was already out there, and Questrade used that knowledge to then build a platform that was better than anything available in the market.
Similarly, the same way Facebook improved upon what MySpace had to offer and took over the entire market. Questrade evolved and created an outstanding investment platform and topped it off with low fees.
Did someone say “Icing on the cake?”
So what kind of platforms does Questrade offer?
Nowadays, Questrade offers three different trading platforms, that together form the Questrade Suite.
- Questrade Trading
- Questrade IQ Edge
- Questrade IQ Mobile
All three of these platforms are enormously didactic, built for only one objective, and that is to provide a great user experience.
One of the best features of this suite is the seamless and frictionless ability. One can start a transaction with Questrade on their laptop and then transfer it to their mobile phone, an extremely useful feature for those who use complex trading strategies or are always on the go.
Individually, each platform serves a different purpose. To qualify the features of each, we will use 4-5 different parameters, which are:
Installation: How fast and easy is the installation of the platform?
Core tasks: What functionalities are available when it comes to performing the core tasks associated with trading, mainly placing orders and information access.
Versatility: What operating systems and devices does the interface support?
Malleability: Can the interface be customized to the needs of each individual trader?
Well, lets dig in to what Questrades investment platforms have to offer us in 2018
Review Of Questrades Browser Platform (Questrade Trading)
In our opinion, Questrade’s browser platform is by far the best option for the average investor. It is the default platform that all US and Canadian customers receive. and is by far the most popular.
Questrade makes the user face clean and extremely easy to use. Sometimes a trader may struggle with the desktop platform as it doesn’t exactly allow for a lot of action to be going on at the same time. On a whole, however, Questrade has built the platform with a lot of care and thought, and is ages ahead of anything else out there.
Keep in mind that if you are running a Linux system, this will be your choice of platform. Unfortunately Questrades IQ Edge isn’t compatible.
Installation and use
No software installation is required because the interface is web based, in other words, it will run through your browser. For us, the platform works without any hiccups in Google Chrome and Firefox.
In terms of speed, we tested Questrades browser platform on Chrome,Edge, Firefox and Safari. It ran amazingly fast on every single one of them with zero issues. You don’t need a bulky computer with a ton of RAM to run the platform.
You’ll find as a basic investor Questrades browser platform is simply all you need. Ironically the platform is called Questrade Trading, which couldn’t be more inaccurate. If you’re looking to trade, Questrade IQ Edge is the platform you will want to use. Their desktop platform is perfect for people simply buying and holding stocks, maybe looking to do a bit of analysis.
For the average investor, Questrades web browser is more than what is necessary. For instance, one can use advanced charting that includes 31 optional indicators and 5 drawing tools.
If you are someone who knows the difference between OHLC and HLC charting, you will be more than satisfied with these set of features. Also, it is easy to check multiple things at the same time, be it your balance or trading history, all in a couple of clicks and a few seconds.
There are a number of tools that Questrade offers for fundamental and technical analysis, but in some cases, the data-feed can be delayed by 15 minutes. To make the user aware of such a delay, a small clock icon will appear at the corner of the screen.
Most investors want to check their balance and make a couple of trades here and there. If you do not fall in this category, and aim to follow 5-6 stocks at the same time and make numerous trades, the platform would be useless. In such a case, we would recommend that you use the Questrade IQ Edge Platform, which will be discussed next.
Orders to buy and sell can be done simply by clicking the double arrow tab located at the top right of your screen, or finding a green “Buy/Sell” button, that is located in numerous positions around the platform. If you have previously searched for a stock, Questrade will remember your search history and have the stock available for purchase with one click.
A web based platform will work on all and any device, given the device has a web browser. This is particularly convenient for those who use unorthodox operating systems, such as Linux, because they do not have to worry about compatibility with their operating system. As long as you have an internet connection and a web browser, you are good to go with Questrade.
Traders can set a home screen, which will appear whenever you log in. It can be the trading screen, or the account balance screen, whatever you want to see first.Like we mentioned above, Questrade also has a gadgets feature. These are screens that display particular information such as activity, balances, or level 1 & 2 quotes. You can play around with these in terms of position on the screen, size, etc.
Review of Questrade’s IQ Edge Platform
Not to be confused with Questrade Portfolio IQ, which is a professionally managed low-cost ($14/year minimum management fee) service that considers the investor’s personal goals and risk tolerance, the Questrade IQ Edge Platform is designed for advanced traders and investors.
As you can see from the picture above, there is a TON of functionality with this program. For us to explain it all would be impossible. But we will do our best to highlight the main features, and let you do the experimenting after.
The key advantage of the IQ Edge platform vs the browser based Questrade Trading platform is the fact you can have multiple displays, or “workspaces” as they call them, available at your disposal.
How does this benefit an active trader? Well, instead of having to switch back and forth from individual stocks in all of these applications, you can simply duplicate the workspace, change the stock, and then seamlessly click back and forth from each.
Installation on most platforms, including Windows 10 and Mac, is a breeze. Built using the programming language C++, Questrade made this a standalone and powerful desktop trading platform. It is safe to assume that the best builders were employed to create Questrades IQ Edge platform because it functions smoothly, without any crashes or problems.
To install IQ Edge, simply log in to your Questrade account, and under the “Accounts” drop down menu, select “Other Platforms”. From there, simply click IQ Edge like displayed in the image above.
Recent comments were made about Questrade’s move to incorporate Morningstar research reports into the IQ Edge interface. Such a move will give users access to research on thousands of companies in the US and Canada across multiple categories.
Also, as opposed to the web platform, there is no delay when it comes to level 2 data. Traders can place orders from the level 2 window, which acts as an advantage in terms of speed and convenience, allowing traders to take advantage of market opportunities.
A level 2 order is when you have purchased one of Questrades advanced streaming packages like we explained in the commission’s section of this review. Questrade level 1 data is 15 minutes delayed, so traders can gain a huge edge by purchasing access(and maybe being refunded!) for level 2 quotes. On top of that, there is no need to change screens for order confirmation, leading to further time savings.
As we mentioned that it is useful for more advanced traders, Questrade offers advanced entry options such as conditional orders, bracket orders, or multi-leg option strategies. In fact, if options are what you want to trade, Questrade has pre-installed option trading layouts available to you. There are hotkeys for faster navigation, and one can set default order values for stocks and options together with order parameters such as order type, duration, and route.
As mentioned before, Questrade offers this as a desktop based platform and will run only on Windows and Mac devices. You will get the same experience no matter what OS you use. But this cannot be used on your mobile.
As soon as you log in, you would notice that the platform is feature rich. Much more so than the Questrade IQ Web. As we have shown in the introduction picture, the features are endless. You can add quick trade buttons, alerts, screening, P&L calculators, and a market mover’s list.
Questrade makes these options available for both US and Canadian stocks. Unlimited workspace allows for unlimited windows, or gadgets, which is highly suitable for trading. For a little personality, users can even change the color to blue or light blue themes as well as changing the background and text colour within their stock quotes.
Review Of Questrades Mobile Platform
Most of us live our lives as hustlers, always on the go and looking to get as much done as possible. This is even truer for those who trade for a living. Questrade identifies this need and caters to it with its mobile app.
Installation is straightforward, same as any other app on your phone. In terms of functionality, the Questrade mobile app can feel a bit sluggish at times. But overall, it’s an excellent piece of programming and deserves top marks.
Still, Questrade is trying to appeal to traders by including some technical indicators in their stock quote search. The mobile application as you can see above has the same look and feel of Questrades browser enabled platform. This was a huge plus for us as we feel the color scheme and layout allows for ease of use and is easy on the eyes, unlike the dark yet customizable Questrade IQ Edge.
The Questrade mobile app is not an ideal tool for a day trader who wants to cover all bases when making an important investment decision. But given the small screen size, the Questrade mobile app delivers as much as possible, such as technical indicators when looking up quotes. Navigation is easy when it comes to buying and selling for both stocks and options, with just a couple of taps. Such features are often more than enough for the average investor.
Furthermore, users can also transfer money between Questrade accounts, as well as exchange funds. Finally, functionalities such as multiple order types, studies and drawings, and super-fast trade executions are also available.
This evaluation criterion isn’t really applicable to the Questrade mobile app. The mobile platform is built for the phone and other handheld mobile devices, and that is where its use ends.
There is obviously limited real-estate on a mobile screen. Not many options when it comes to customizing the app.
Questrade FX Global
Questrade Review 2017: Questrade’s Customer Service
There are quite a few Questrade reviews out there that bash the brokerages customer service. However, most of these complaints are old. There was indeed a time when Questrade struggled mightily on the customer service side. But they did what they do best and listened to their customers. In the time since most of the negative reviews, Questrade has evolved and improved its customer service by leaps and bounds. Questrade has done whatever possible to provide users with a great experience.
Also, with a great FAQ section and an intuitive interface, Questrade customers hardly need to call their service reps, unless of course you are dealing with a locked account because of mistyping the login credentials more than once. Another great source to look for more information is the Questrade forums, this is where other confused users post their questions and share knowledge.
Are Questrade representatives easy to get a hold of?
Still, we would want to take an objective approach and evaluate their services. Almost everyone on this planet will agree that when it comes to customer service, speed, adeptness of staff, and politeness are of critical importance.
You can choose two options to communicate with Questrade customer service, either live chat or phone. With live chat, the wait times are almost non-existent. And the best part about it? It’s right in front of you, all the time. No looking for the customer service section or scrambling to find an e-mail. It just sits in the bottom corner of your browser. Moreover, the option provides the benefit of not having to dial numbers. Just click to open the chat window and type your question. Phone call waiting times with Questrade will definitely be longer, but not by a large margin.
Questrade customer service reps are also very well-trained, which translates to a polite and friendly user experience, along with ability to answer compilated questions. In fact, the customer service is so good that most users will believe that they are getting privileged treatment.
Questrade Review 2018: Questrade’s Extra Features
The brokerage industry is competitive, highly competitive! Like any other sector with fierce rivalry, it is not enough to just get the job done. A company that goes above and beyond the call of duty is appreciated and respected. Ultimately, it leads to the increased value for the customer.
Questrade is one such company that strives to exceed expectations, and the additional features just accentuate all the benefits that are already offered. The best part is that Questrade offers these features at no additional cost.
Questrade’s Forum or “The Exchange”
One of the most daunting tasks for a new trader is to decode all the nuances associated with trading and investing, especially if you are pursuing on your own. Even the most accomplished investors in the world such as Warren Buffett and David Abrams work with trusted teams and advisors.
You can create such a personal team, or tap into the collective wisdom and experience of numerous investors by using Questrade’s Forum, also called “The Exchange.” You don’t need to be a member to view the Questrade forum, so check it out!
Unlike many other forums on the internet, The Exchange seems to be active. In fact, we were surprised by the activity on it as we had expected it to be a tundra, devoid of any signs of life. If we were to put a number on it, we would say that 80% of the forum had fresh content.
We highly encourage users to participate in Questrades forum as it is a fun way to learn, participate in polls and contests and most importantly, meet like-minded people who can help build knowledge and share experiences.
Questrade’s Online Webinars
If you are someone who wants a more “formal” medium of education, there is an incredible option for that as well. We highly encourage users both new and seasoned alike, to continuously educate themselves as good education is paramount in the makings of a good investor. Again, the example of Warren Buffett is apt here, as he spends 80% of his day reading and thinking.
At first sight, one might think that the number of courses (10 to be precise) offered by Questrade isn’t something to write home about. However, what the learning platform lacks in quantity it very much makes up for in quality.
Additionally, the Questrade webinars cover a broad range of topics, listed below:
- Fundamentals of options
- High growth strategies behind CFDs
- All about dividend investing
- Mining and metal investing roundtable
- ETF investing: why all ETFs are not created equal
- Searching for undervalued opportunities in equities
- Investing in fixed income securities with ETFs
- Introduction to technical analysis
Viewing these webinars would allow you to build a customized trading strategy, give you knowledge on how to maximize profits and equip you with the tools needed to save on fees etc. And the best part is that all this is free. That’s right! Questrade has made all of these free to access. As a matter of fact, you don’t even have to be a Questrade member to view these webinars.
Questrade’s Blog and Learning Centre
Almost everyone on this planet is guilty of shying away from the task of learning to use a new interface on an app or software. Such fears are exacerbated on stock trading platforms with number and graphs flashing everywhere.
To ease the pain, Questrade offers many options. The easiest is the personal live demo, wherein traders will be taken through all the features of the platform by a specialist and registered for the 90-day free trial.
Another option for all those who live in Toronto is to visit the Questrade Live Learning Center, where you will find platform specialists serving up free trial accounts and live platform seminars.
The blog for Questrade, in our opinion, needs more work. However, it is a good resource if you enjoy light and fun reading such as “Is your cat a better investor that you?” or “6 Ways to Become a Financial Minimalist.”
Reaching the heights of financial wizardry requires one to be exhaustive and meticulous with their research. It is the only way you will be successful when it comes to self directed investment. Sure, you can simply Google a top stock list and purchase some stocks you like off their, but you are always putting yourself at risk not doing your own due diligence.
Thankfully, Questrade has the best tools in the business, and I’ve used them for the better part of 7 years.
You can probably tell from the name, but this research tool is more directed at traders. Intraday Trader is a technical analyzer that watches all of your favorite indexes and provides updates and alerts on certain triggers.
You can use Questrades preset lists, or you can insert your own stocks or indexes to follow. What it will do is alert you when a potential profitable trading opportunity has arisen. It is obviously up to you to decide if you want to take advantage of it or not.
Make your triggers as simple or as complicated as you wish, and the program is extremely fun to tinker with. With me being a strict buy and hold investor, I don’t have much use for it, but I can see where it has massive advantages to an active trader.
Market Intelligence is essentially a central hub that contains access to a TON of information all around the world. Morningstar provides the data as we mentioned earlier in this review. Looking up earnings reports on specific companies or even complete sectors is now a breeze.
Even though with the evolution of Google it is quite easy to access this information outside of Questrade, using their Market Intelligence area is definitely easier.
Set up alerts with ease and get instant notifications when a stock you’re interested in has released earnings, or maybe hit that purchase price point.
Refers to the technical analysis newsletter, containing research and trade ideas, delivered to the user’s inbox on every trading day.
Mutual fund centre
A tool made specifically for Questrade mutual fund aficionados, allows them to compare funds against a benchmark and is loaded with reports, earnings, news, customizable and pre-set watch lists, filters and screeners. Following that, when an investor has to make a trade, he can do so directly from the Questrade mutual fund center. As of now, the data pertains to Canadian mutual funds only.
Questrades Account History
Some of us live a fast-paced life and do not have the time to keep track of all our activities. The same applies to trading. However, when the time comes when you do have to track your history, the nervousness can have a pernicious effect on a person’s mental health. This is where MyQuestrade comes in.
MyQuestrade is essentially your “hub”, one where you can access all the dirty details of your account from your current holdings to tax slips to referring a friend. It truly has everything. For privacy reasons I have blurred out the dollar figures, but as you can see above, Questrade keeps track of all my holdings and returns.
The record keeping mechanism of a Questrade trading account obviates the need to track your activities. It’s your very own comprehensive and meticulous record keeper of all trading activity, including but not limited to investment return, account activity, investment summary, current cash balances and positions, as well as total equity and buying power.
I feel that Questrade really excels in this department. In fact, I’ve been with a few other brokers, and one of the main reasons I decided to dig my roots in with Questrade was it’s ease of use and it’s ability to access data like this within seconds on their dashboard.
Questrades statements, record and tax slips
They maintain and keep records of your account for up to 7 years.
Tax slips are simply uploaded to your account history and are available for download. No mail, no waiting forever. I’m sure we’ve all been with that employee that takes forever and a day to issue you your T4, so this is a blessing in disguise.
Some people like to store individual records of their investment portfolios on their computers. Questrade makes this process easy. Personally for me, I just leave them on the site. I trust Questrade enough that the records will stay there. But for those who want to keep a record yourself, Questrade makes the statements available for download on the 15th of each month.
Questrades statements are a 5 page(or more) document that details your account activity throughout the month. The statements are very easy to understand, and within a couple minutes I know the bulk of what I have done, earned, or lost in my portfolio that month.
Now, if you’re really hardcore on record keeping and want physical copies of these documents, you can get a hold of Questrade. There is a charge, and I highly suggest just simply either storing them on your computer or printing the PDFs out.
Questrade and Initial Public Offerings (IPO Centre)
Most individuals treat IPOs as a marginalization until they miss out an important one, such as that of Facebook, and then kick themselves. Therefore, we feel that a dedicated IPO center is a noteworthy feature and deserves its own section.
The first important feature is that access to this center is free and includes information on companies raising capital from initial or secondary offerings. These offerings are listed in the form of a list, the items on which when clicked on lead to further information on that particular company offering. Second, there is more than just companies coming to market. Despite the name, IPOs of company stocks aren’t the only types of offers featured. Third, the IPO center also includes fixed income deals, new structured products and secondaries (this spelling is correct, please do not autocorrect) for equities.
Questrades App Hub
Over the years Questrade has managed to partner up with some financial companies to make your investment experience more enjoyable. This is where the app hub comes into play.
Personally I don’t use this feature much if at all, but I can see where people may find value in it. Anyone who uses services like Profit.ly may find it beneficial to instead add them to their Questrade apps to have easier access.
There is a ton of third party apps in Questrades App Hub and they are all verified by Questrade. There isn’t much more to say on it, so when you make your account, be sure to check it out!
Issues related to security can encumber an individual from stepping outside of the safe zone provided by products associated with various Canadian Banks. But don’t be afraid, because Questrades security is top notch.
If you’d like, two-step authentication can be enabled for your account.
Also, Questrades password limit is two entries. That’s it. At first I found this annoying, as sometimes I accidentally click the wrong key not once but twice. From there, I am usually brutally particular about the keys I enter as I know the third time is usually the charm for websites to cut you out and force you to call customer service.
I found out the hard way that Questrade only allows you two entries before it locks you out. This is a level of security that a lot of other websites simply don’t match. You may find it annoying as well, but I am glad they do it. This is our money we are dealing with here, and Questrade doesn’t take it lightly.
They take it another level further by keeping track of what devices you typically log into your account from. If you decide to use a friends phone or a desktop that is not yours, you will be prompted to answer a security question to verify that it is truly you who is trying to access the acount.
Questrade covers your losses up to 100% in the case that they are at fault. No, they won’t cover you if you log into Questrade at your local library and leave your account open when you leave. And no, they won’t cover you if you are downloading some shady documents or files that happen to infect your computer with malware and it gains access to your account.
But rest assured, if it is a situation that Questrade is to blame, your money will be covered.
Questrade is part of the Canadian Investor Protection Fund. What this means is that your money, up to $1,000,000, is covered.
The belief that only a well-established bank can provide adequate levels of online-security is more of a myth than reality. Most established brokerages use the same level of security as any other bank, and we need to start erasing that stigma, especially when it comes to Questrade.
Furthermore, Quetsrade has a dedicated frauds and scams section for information on both ongoing and new types of fraudulent activity.
Our Questrade review for 2018 conclusion
I’ve been a Questrade client for 7 going on 8 years now. They aren’t perfect, as no one is in today’s world. But they are by far the best brokerage I have ever worked with, and unless something else absolutely tremendous comes along, I won’t be changing.
Their commissions are the lowest I’ve seen compared to their account minimums. They have a bountiful list of commission free ETFs to pick from. Their platforms are second to none in terms of depth and quality, and they run seamlessly.
I will be the first one to admit, my experience with Questrade wasn’t always the best. But they have listened to their customers and improved tenfold. Questrade, since its humble beginnings in the year 1999 has made significant bounds into the hearts and minds of consumers and is likely to continue to do so in the future. If one were to dig deep, they would come across some reviews that are generally negative, most probably arising from bad customer experience, as we definitely all have them.
A company these days, especially with the evolution of social media, is exploited a lot more than they used to be. No one can be perfect, and Questrade does everything in its power to be close to it.
But Questrade has made significant improvements in all areas including customer service since those days. Moreover, the old adage “you can’t please everyone” holds true for Questrade as well, and it would be harsh to expect otherwise.
Customer service, even though it can never really be deemed a pleasure to have to call in, is pretty close to one. I’ve never had an issue with wait times in the past couple of years. And in fact, I barely even have to call in now. Their live chat online simply answers every one of my needs.
Overall, Questrade provides everything that one could ask for such as low account minimums, an easy to use platform, low commissions, in-depth research, secure accounts, and many other ancillary features. If you are grappling with the issue of which brokerage to choose then you can’t possibly go wrong with Questrade. For Questrade, customers reign and that is what really matters.
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