Getting Started

Fees

How much does it cost to open an account?

There are no fees and no cash minimum to open an account. However, there is a minimum $2,000 deposit required for margin and options accounts.

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How much will I pay in commissions?

Equity (stock) trades placed over the phone are generally $8.88 flat. However, there are many other trades and scenarios where the commission is different. Please consult the Commissions & Fees page.

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Are there any fees I should be aware of?

There are a couple of fees that are important to note:

1.  The administration fee of $25 per quarter. This fee is easily waived for clients who meet at least one of the following criteria:

  • hold $15,000+ in cumulative assets OR
  • have an active recurring deposit/contribution of at least $100 monthly OR
  • make at least two trades per quarter OR
  • have been a client for less than 6 months

2.  A paper statement fee of $5 per quarter, which is charged to clients that receive paper statements and trade confirmations.

Visit the Commissions & Fees section of the website for more information on the fees applicable to your account.

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Will I be contacted before I am charged the administration fee?

To help ensure you don’t incur any unnecessary charges, we will endeavor to contact you by email and outline steps you can take to avoid the administration fee.

Please visit Account Settings to update your email address, if necessary.

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I’m a new client waiting for my funds to transfer into my account – will I be charged the administration fee for the first quarter that I’m a client?

We understand transfers take time. It also takes time to research your investments. That’s why the administration fee does not apply to clients that have been with Credential Direct for less than six months.

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When will I be charged a quarterly fee, if applicable to me?

Those subject to a quarterly fee will be charged on the 1st (or next business day if the 1st is not a business day) following the calendar quarter.

Quarter Quarter Ending Date Charged
1 Mar 31 Apr 1
2 Jun 30 Jul 2
3 Sep 31 Oct 1
4 Dec 31 Jan 2

The Administration fee does not apply to clients that have been with Credential Direct for less than six months.

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How do I pay for quarterly fees that are applicable to me?

For any quarterly fees, you may elect to take the fee from your bank account on record via electronic funds transfer (EFT) or from your non-registered brokerage account (Cash or Margin).

If you have not made an election (clients holding accounts prior to June 2014), fees are charged to the account with the largest cash balance at the time the fee is assessed. If there is no account with sufficient funds, the fee will be charged to the first available account in the following order: non-registered; TFSA; other registered account.

Please call 1.877.742.2900 to update your election.

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What account will quarterly fees be charged to?

For any quarterly fees, you may elect to take the fee from your bank account on record via electronic funds transfer (EFT) or from your non-registered brokerage account (Cash or Margin).

If you have not made an election (clients holding accounts prior to June 2014), fees are charged to the account with the largest cash balance at the time the fee is assessed. If there is no account with sufficient funds, the fee will be charged to the first available account in the following order: non-registered; TFSA; other registered account.

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What if I don’t have sufficient cash to cover the fee?

We strongly recommend you make arrangements to ensure the fee is paid from cash in the account or by electronic funds transfer (EFT).

If the fee brings your non-registered account (Cash or Margin) or TFSA into a debit (overdraft) balance, interest will be charged.

If the fee brings your registered account (RSP, RIF, RESP, etc.) into a debit (overdraft) balance, we will notify you by email that you need to cover the debit balance. If the debit balance is not covered within a week, we will sell a position in the account to sufficiently cover the overdraft balance (online commission will apply).

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How do I calculate the margin required for a trade?

The margin requirement depends on the price and number of shares that you plan to buy on margin. Visit the Types of Accounts section to learn more about trading on margin.

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Are there any extra commission costs I should know about?

No. Unlike many other online brokers, Credential Direct’s commissions are truly flat; there are no hidden ECN fees. Visit the Commissions & Fees section of the website for more on our commissions.

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How can I reduce the foreign exchange costs in registered accounts?

U.S. dollar trades executed in your registered account (RSP, RIF, TFSA, LIF, etc.) at Credential Direct are subject to foreign exchange conversion. For example, if you buy a U.S. dollar security, the purchase will settle in Canadian dollars with the foreign exchange rate for buy orders applied. If you then place a sell order, the foreign exchange sell rate will be applied to that sell. We are currently in development to permit U.S. dollar cash in a registered account so that foreign exchange conversion will not occur. Until that time we are pleased to provide the following: “foreign exchange flat trades” also known as “washing FX rates”.

To wash the FX rates: Washing the FX rates must be handled manually through a phone order by a representative:

  1. Orders must be $10,000 USD and executed on the same day
  2. Execute the first USD order on-line
  3. Once filled, then phone Credential Direct to place any subsequent orders. Commission will be min $43 USD
  4. The representative will manually apply the same FX rate as the first order

Credential Direct will not be responsible for washing the rates on executed orders from prior days; or, on subsequent orders that have been executed using the on-line trading system.

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