Investing, Investing Basics

Zero-Commission Trading Announced by National Bank

by Modern Money
August 25, 2021
August 25, 2021


National Bank Direct Brokerage has announced zero-commission and fees on online trading of Canadian and U.S. stocks and ETFs. With this announcement in Canada, many are speculating that this may place pressure on the big 5 banks to reduce their commissions on trading.

National Bank Cutting Trading Fees

A bank-owned Canadian online broker has finally matched the zero-commission deals long available to U.S. investors (like Robinhood, for example), which now puts serious pressure on their competitors to follow suit.

In any type of National Bank Direct Brokerage account, registered or non-registered, you can now buy and sell stocks and ETFs listed on North American stock exchanges at zero cost and with no minimums. At this time, fractional shares are not an option, but that may change soon as Wealthsimple Trade announced that option for U.S. and Canadian companies.

Trading Fees in Canada

National Bank Direct Brokerage joins Wealthsimple Trade in offering zero-commission trading (to learn more about Wealthsimple and Wealthsimple Trade, click here).

Before this major shake-up, National Bank Direct Brokerage had a $6.95 commission, which was still at the lower end of a pricing spectrum that goes up to about $10 per trade at big bank-owned outfits such as Scotia iTrade, TD Direct Investing and RBC Direct Investing (see below for full list of trading fees). Other players such as Questrade and Virtual Brokers charge less, but traders can still expect to pay at least $2 to $5 per trade at this time.

Royal Bank, The Bank of Nova Scotia, The Bank of Montreal, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce and Toronto-Dominion Bank (more commonly known as “The Big 5”) have yet to adopt a zero commission model for online trading, but the announcement from National Bank is sure to put pressure on them.

As of today, the trading fees at the big 5 banks are as follows (these numbers represent the range of the pricing available depending on a number of different factors such as trade frequency, account size, etc.):

  • RBC Direct Investing: $6.95 to $9.95
  • Scotia iTrade: $4.99 to $9.99
  • BMO InvestorLine: $9.95
  • CIBC Investor’s Edge: $4.95 to $9.95
  • TD Direct Investing: $7 to $9.99


With this big shake up in Canada, stay tuned for future announcements as the big 5 face pressure from their clients to keep up with the changes happening across the industry.

About Modern Money

This article is brought to you by the Modern Money research team. The insights, information and guidance that you need to take control from those who understand you best.

You may also like

Share Buybacks 101: Everything You Need to Know

Buybacks are a tool for returning value to shareholders. When companies post a profit at the end of the year, they have some options for what to do with the cash...

Why You Should Care Less About the Dow Jones Industrial Average

The Dow is a relic of another age and it is truly remarkable how heavily its movement influences the market news cycle. It has been around since the late 1800s, when Charles Dow and Edward Jones decided that they needed a more efficient proxy for the broader stock market so that investors could have a rough idea of how the markets were performing (it wasn’t quite as easy to get real-time market data back in those days).

Subscribe to Modern Money

Enter your e-mail to receive updates on new articles from Modern Money, the ultimate guide for young professionals.

Don't worry, we won't send you any spam.
Share via
Copy link
Powered by Social Snap