TD Direct Investing Review 2022

TD Direct Investing Review Summary:
  • Trading Fees and Pricing
  • Account Options
  • ETF Trading Fees
  • Customer Service
  • Platform Options
  • Overall Banking Convenience
3.8

TD Direct Investing Review Summary:

For those already customers of Toronto-Dominion bank, TD Direct will be a convenient place to do all of your financial transactions, from banking to trading. In our TD Direct Investing review, we’ll see how it stacks up against other platforms to show you which one might be the best fit for your particular needs.

As with all big banks, the fees at TD Direct Investing are higher than other non-bank online brokers, with ETF and stock trades, for example, costing a whopping $9.99 per transaction. Other fees, like the $25 per quarter maintenance fee for accounts holding less than $15,000, make this a less attractive option for those who want a basic DIY service without the high fees.

For Canadian investors who don’t already bank with TD Bank, better, more user-friendly platforms with the same full range of account options can be enjoyed at a much lower price. Check out more about our most recommended Canadian online broker Qtrade.

Pros

  • One of Canada’s most trusted financial companies
  • Easy and convenient if you already bank with TD
  • Modern, easy to use platform
  • Good amount of account options to choose from

Cons

  • Higher trading fees, ETFs in particular
  • Very high account fees unless you maintain a $15K balance

TD Direct Investing is not rated as one of the best Canadian brokerages: Fees are high and there’s no active promotion.

View Alternative, Better Rated Canadian Brokers

The TD Direct Investing online discount brokerage is amongst the most popular of Canada’s online discount brokerages. TD has consistently been on the forefront over the last decade as investors have moved away from expensive “full service brokers”, to the much cheaper discount broker model that we see today. 

As one of Canada’s largest companies and a strong global competitor, it is no surprise that TD’s online trading platforms are amongst the most popular in Canada. Find out why in our in-depth TD Direct Investing review and learn more about their trading fees, accounts, and the different broker platforms that exist under the broader TD umbrella.

TD Direct Investing’s Trading Fees and Prices

When discussing TD Direct Investing’s Trading and account fees, it’s important to consider that TD (and their major competitors at BMO, Scotia, CIBC, and RBC) are not known for trying to be the lowest-cost providers of banking and investing services in Canada. Instead, they seek to provide ultra-safe products, and user-friendly customer experiences, at a competitive price model. 

TD Direct Investing certainly accomplishes that goal. They provide elite-level usability and user options, for a similar price point as their competitors.

That being said, there are a number of different fees you’ll encounter if investing with TD Direct Investing, and they vary depending on the particular platform you are using. 

Now we’ll have a look at the options under the TD umbrella and the fees that come with each, as well as look at how those fees compare to other trading platforms.

TD WebBroker and TD Mobile Investing AppAdvanced Dashboard for Active Traders QuestradeQtradeCI Direct Investing (Virtual Brokers)
Maintenance Fee$25 per quarter/$100 per year if your portfolio is less than $15,000 orcertain conditions are met under the TD Household Program (ie. your household’s combined  assets are above $15,000, or at least one member of your household sets up a $100+ monthly automatic contribution  through the Systematic Investment Plan (SIP)).Same as TD WebBroker and TD Mobile Investing. However, active traders are more likely to meet the set criteria and avoid paying a maintenance fee.$0 $25 per quarter if your unless certain conditions are met (ie. balance is at least $25,000, or make a certain number or commissionable trades)$24.95 per quarter charged as an administrative fee unless certain conditions are met (ie. balance is at least $25,000, one trade is completed per quarter having at least a $1.99 commission)
Stock Trading Fees and Commissions$9.99 per trade$7.00 per tradeAs low as $0.01 to trade stocks$8.75 for regular accounts, $6.95 for active investorsAs low as $0.01 per share, $1.99 minimum, and $7.99 maximum per trade. $3.99 flat fee for active traders
ETF Trading Fees and Commissions $9.99 per trade$7.00 per tradeAs low as $0 to purchase, $0.01 to sell$0 for select ETF trades, $8.75 for all others for regular accounts, $6.95 for active investors$0 to buy, $0.01 to sell, $1.99 minimum, and $7.99 maximum per trade. 
ECN Fees$0$0Usually $0, or a low fee with certain assets$0$0
Options Trading $9.99 per trade + $1.25 per contract$7.00 per trade + $1.25 contract fee$9.95 per trade + $1 per contract$8.75 per trade + $1.25 per contract for regular accounts, $6.75 per trade + $1.25 for active investors$7.99 per trade + $1.25 per contract, $3.99 per trade + $1.25 for active investors 

By looking at the chart, it’s easy to see that by no means is by no means the least expensive option. Low fees and commissions are key to maximizing your investment, but TD Direct Investing’s high costs simply do not make it competitive in our comparison.

TD Direct Investing Platform Comparison

TD Canada Investing has three separate platforms, which can be a bit confusing, especially since one of their platforms, thinkorswim, is not available in Canada. 

Below is a chart summarizing the highlights of each platform.

Platform

WebBroker

Advanced Dashboard

Thinkorswim

Best for

Investors and traders

Active trading

Active U.S options trading

Minimum deposit and account balance

0

0

$25,000 U.S.

North American stocks and options trading

Yes

Yes

U.S Only

Advanced order types: stop, stop limit, trailing stops (by price and %), trailing stop limit

Yes

Yes

Yes

Streaming market data

No

Yes

Yes

Market Research

Daily, weekly, and special reports

Financial statements, earnings estimates, ratio analysis and analyst ratings

400+ technical studies and 20 drawings, including eight Fibonacci tools

TD Direct Investing Account Types: TFSA, RRSP, Non-Registered

As a top-end online broker, TD Direct Investing offers all of the usual accounts including:

  • Non-registered accounts (both CAD and USD)
  • Margin Accounts
  • RRSP (both CAD and USD)
  • TFSA
  • RESP
  • RRIF
  • LIF
  • LIRA

The bottom line is that while you might pay more in commissions to use TD Direct Investing, you’re going to absolutely have access to all of the accounts that you could ask for as a Canadian Investor.

TD Direct Investing Platform and Tools

TD Direct Investing offers three different platforms, all offering a variety of investment tools. In this section of our TD Direct Investing Review we will dive into each one to check out what makes it unique.

TD WebBroker

WebBroker is the web-based platform used by most TD Direct Investing customers, as it’s easy to use. It allows for customers to personalize their homepage with useful at-a-glance information and training videos, and even interactive master classes.

WebBroker also provides access to analytical tools, market data, and reports to help users make the most of their investment opportunities.

td direct web app

TD App

Designed for on-the-go investors, the TD app allows users to easily execute orders, access up-to-date news and reports and monitor portfolio performance all from their mobile device. The app is 100% integrated with the WebBroker, offering users flexibility.

td direct investing mobile app

Advanced Dashboard

Active traders will have access to the Advanced Dashboard, which allows users to view real-time streaming data, and use features such as customizable research tools and charts, as well as access to both Canadian and US markets.

td direct advanced dashboard

TD Goal Assist

As so many investors continue to pour into DIY online investing, in 2021 TD introduced a really cool new platform that the MDJ Editorial Team got pretty excited about. (Now if only those fees would come down!)

The TD app is known as TD GoalAssist and the idea is to help DIY index investors through the use of TD’s in-house ETF portfolios.  The TD “one-click” portfolios (you can see how they compare to the rest of Canada’s all-in-one ETFs) are available through the app commission-free.

Paul Clark, the President of TD Direct Investing introduced the product by stating:

We know investing can be intimidating and many Canadians may simply put off getting started as a result. We believe you shouldn’t need a lot of money or expertise to start building your investing journey, which is why we created TD GoalAssist. This new mobile-only investing service is straightforward, uses plain language and is grounded in what our clients have told us they’re looking for – goal planning, education and low cost.”

Clark then went on to add:

“We know a lot has changed in our lives this year as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. From an investing perspective, we’ve seen a significant increase in demand for online investing and more people trying investing on their own. TD GoalAssist could not come at a better time as Canadians are looking for an easy and affordable way to invest.”

Anything that helps investor education and lets people know about cheap and easy ways to invest is a major upgrade in our opinion.  We’ll be sure to update this TD Direct Investing Review soon in order to illustrate just how the new TD GoalAssist platform is being received.

October 2021 Update – TD Direct Investing Improves Customer Service and Platform

After experiencing massive growth in 2020 and 2021, many of Canada’s discount brokerages sought to find solutions to their customer service delays. 

TD has been at the front of the pack (as one would expect from a well-funded full service big bank brokerage). In a recent article, TD Direct Investing Raymond Chun revealed that TD’s discount brokerage business had added 35% more licensed investors since March of 2020.

Additionally, they have majorly upgraded their overall platform so that it can perform across various devices.  Chun highlighted this work saying, “We’re at a place now where the majority of our customer transactions are being done through a mobile device… right from account opening to actual trades.”

TD’s focus on arming online DIY investors with a full toolbox of options resulted in the brokerage also offering online GIC purchases for the first time.

TD Direct Investing FAQ

Who Is TD Direct Investing Discount Broker Best for?

If you are already a TD Bank customer, there is absolutely no shame in choosing TD Direct Investing as your Canadian bank online discount broker. Convenience, great customer service, safety, variety and offering of educational tools are things that TD Direct offers that not all discount brokers can. 

As always, we want to look at the potential cons as well, and in our TD Direct Investing Review, we find that overall, the fees might not be justifiable. The $9.99 trading fee and $25 quarterly fee will in fact cut into your bottom line, so its unique offerings might not be enough for some investors to justify the cost. Brokers like Qtrade and Questrade come out ahead when it comes to DIY investing and saving you money.

Read our Qtrade review or our Questrade review for more information about why we think they are still cut above TD Direct Investing. 

FT

FT is the founder and editor of Million Dollar Journey (est. 2006). Through various financial strategies outlined on this site, he grew his net worth from $200,000 in 2006 to $1,000,000 by 2014. You can read more about him here.
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Bob
3 months ago

TD Goal Assist no longer exists. It has recently been replaced by TD Easy Trade. TD Easy Trade offers the same free purchases of TD ETFs that Goal Assist did. However, TD Easy Trade also offers TD clients the ability to make 50 free trades a year – a $499.50 value year after year after year. Long standing TD Direct Investing clients still pay full freight – no free TD ETF purchases and no commission free trades. I have spoken to several long term TD Direct Investing clients who are rather upset by TD’s actions this month.

I agree with the evaluations of the BMO Investorline and TD Direct Investing platforms provided on this site. Investorline is now the better platform – especially for those who employ ETFs.

Para
13 days ago
Reply to  Bob

Yes but are you a BIPOC? Look at the photos in TD promotions. Only BIPOCs need apply.