Sometimes stock trading apps are so popular that they make waves in Canada before they’re even available to Canadians! That’s the case with American low-cost trading platform Webull.
Webull is a DIY online brokerage that’s available in the US, plus a handful of other countries including Japan, China, and Korea. It’s not available in Canada, and they haven’t announced any plans to expand into Canada in the near future.
If you’re looking for a similar trading experience here, our nearest equivalents (and our most recommended online trading platforms) are Qtrade and Questrade. These excellent platforms aren’t completely free to use, but they are featured at the top of our list of the Best Canadian Online Brokers.
So why should you care about Webull? Because they have some features that you can use without an account. And also, because knowledge is power.
What is Webull?
Webull is an online trading platform that allows users to trade stocks, ETFs, and a few other assets (more on this later) with 0 commissions and no minimum deposit.
It’s similar to other American brokers such as Robinhood (another US-only trading app you may have heard of), but it has the added bonus of extended trading hours which allow account holders to make trades as early as 4 am and as late as 8 pm Eastern time.
Is Webull Available in Canada?
Sadly, Webull is not currently available in Canada. If you want to open a Webull account, you need a US address plus an American ID and a social security number. So, it’s not even a question of jumping through a couple of extra hoops as a Canadian user – you really, really need to be American. Period.
However (and here’s why you might still want to know about Webull), you can download the app and use their research tools without an account.
Webull Review – Comparing To Canadian Favourites
Webull is a popular app, and it’s easy to see why—it has a lot going for it. Here’s a quick rundown of the features so you can see what you’re missing (sorry, but we swear, Qtrade and Questrade are fantastic alternatives!).
- Webull allows users to open IRA retirement accounts (traditional, Roth, or rollover) and individual brokerage accounts
- Investments available to trade include stocks, options, ETFs, ADRs, and crypto
- Trading is open for full extended hours (4 am to 8 pm ET)
- New users receive 3 free months’ access to Level 2 Nasdaq tools for in-depth analysis (after that, it’s a monthly fee of $1-14 depending on the range of data needed).
- Webull is safe to use and regulated by the SEC and FINRA
Webull offers commission-free trading with no annual fees or inactivity fees. They do charge a withdrawal fee of $75 for a full or partial withdrawal from your account, but that’s basically it.
If you’re wondering how a no-fee business model is possible, here’s what Webull says on their website:
“We make money the same way every other broker makes money, but with one less revenue line item: commissions. In order to keep the lights on, we optimize the back-end revenue streams that every other broker (traditional or non) utilize to generate revenue. Simply put, these are stock loans, interest on free credit balances, margin interest and payment for order flow.”
Webull Alternatives in Canada
We’ve established that you can’t have a Webull account in Canada (sorry!), so now what?
As we’ve been saying, your best bets for a similar experience are Qtrade or Questrade.
Every online broker is slightly different, and these two aren’t identical to each other or to Webull- but they do have some great features. Let’s take a look:
Easy to access and use. Don’t need an account to use research tools
Excellent user experience. One of the best apps on the market
Has made good progress in the last few years
24/7 access to online customer service reps but some customers complain that it’s slow.
Ranked #1, friendly and accessible customer service that’s second to none
Had some trouble with 4-hour wait times in 2020
$8.75 ($6.95 elite accounts)
$4.95 for up to 500 shares. Maximum fees of $9.95
Yes, but don’t apply to every trade
No annual/inactivity fees. $75 for full/partial withdrawals
Quarterly fee of $25. Account closure and transfer fees
Quarterly fee of $25 on some accounts. Inactivity fees
Free real-time quotes, free research tools
Top-ranked resources for over a decade
Has made major gains in the past few years
SIPC insured, FINRA member
CIPF Member, IIROC regulated
CIPF Member, IIROC regulated
Mutual Fund Purchases
Yes, free of charge
None in Canada
Up To $2,000 Cashback
$50 in Free Trades
Neither QTrade nor Questrade is commission-free like Webull, but they do offer reasonable-to-rock-bottom trading fees. They also feature commission-free buying of ETFs (QTrade allows you to sell ETFs commission-free as well).
Qtrade shines in customer service – it’s ranked #1 for its friendliness and accessibility. It also has first-class resources for customer research and education. We feel strongly that these features make the fees entirely worth it compared to the less comprehensive resources you get from a no-fee platform like Wealthsimple Trade.
Questrade had a shaky start to 2020 but has made major progress in terms of customer service and resources since then.
While Webull offers IRA and non-registered accounts only, both Qtrade and Questrade offer TFSAs, RESPs, and RRSPs. Both companies allow US dollar trading as well as Canadian currency accounts.
Qtrade and Questrade also offer more investment options than Webull does. Their available assets include:
- Mutual funds
You can learn more about how these two excellent online trading platforms stack up to each other by checking out our Questrade vs Qtrade comparison.
Webull For Canadians – FAQ
Webull Review Summary
Apart from the fact that it’s not currently available in Canada, Webull is a solid addition to the ranks of no-fee online brokers. It doesn’t have a wide range of available accounts, and it doesn’t let you trade bonds, mutual funds, or precious metals, but if you’re looking for a basic no-fee trading account to build a portfolio of stocks and ETFs, it’s a good option.
Or it would be if it was available in Canada. Which it isn’t. So, for now, the most you can do is use it for researching stock prices and tracking performance.
If you’re looking for a quality equivalent that you can use in Canada, QTrade and Questrade are your best bets.
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