Investing

*** The unofficial RBC Direct Investing thread ***

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Jan 9, 2010
648 posts
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*** The unofficial RBC Direct Investing thread ***

I recently got hooked up with RBC Direct Investing. Considering it's the self-directed brokerage of the largest Canadian bank, it doesn't seem to have a whole lot of discussion here on RFD. So, I figured I'd create a thread to discuss RBC DI, ask questions, and exchange information. If that bothers anyone....well, take it up with a moderator, and if they want to delete it, so be it :)

Main website:
http://www.rbcdirectinvesting.com

Royal Circle benefits information (for clients over $250,000 in assets):
http://www.rbcdirectinvesting.com/royalcircle

Active Trader benefits information (for clients who make 30 or more trades per quarter):
http://www.rbcdirectinvesting.com/active-trader

Phone numbers:
General inquiries and trading desk:
1-800-769-2560 (option 4)

Royal Circle clients only:
1-877-722-2372

Here's the basic info about their service (if this changes or someone notices it's inaccurate in some way, PM me and I'll update it):


LAST UPDATED: March 4, 2011

    Commissions (online only; see [url]http://www.rbcdirectinvesting.com/commissions-fees-schedule.html[/url] for details): [U]Less than $50,000 in assets OR under 30 trades per quarter[/U] Up to 1,000 shares: $28.95 Over 1,000 shares: If stock price is up to $2.00, commission is 1.5% of trade amount; if stock price is over $2.00, commission is 3 cents per share ($28.95 minimum) [U]More than $50,000 in assets OR 30-149 trades per quarter[/U] Any number of shares: $9.95 [U]More than 150 trades per quarter[/U] Any number of shares: $6.95
  • Instant fund transfers between RBC DI and RBC banking accounts (during business hours). However, no direct electronic fund transfers are possible from RBC DI to a non-RBC bank account. You can wire funds to a non-RBC bank account for a $20 fee. Note: you can deposit money in RBC DI from a non-RBC bank account using a regular online bill payment (search your payee list for "RBC Direct Investing"), but of course the transfer will not be instant.
  • Real-time non-streaming level 1 quotes, streaming 20-minute-delayed level 1 quotes. Active Traders (over 30 trades per quarter) get streaming real-time level 1 quotes and streaming real-time level 2 quotes in a Trading Dashboard tool. Royal Circle clients (over $250,000 in assets) get access to various advanced research reports and streaming real-time level 1 quotes, but no Trading Dashboard (see links above for more info on Royal Circle and Active Trader benefits).

    NOTE: Level 2 quotes for NYSE or AMEX stocks are NOT available to any RBC Direct Investing clients. Level 2 quotes are only available for NASDAQ, TSX, and TSX Venture companies.
  • Create multiple watchlists, each of which can contain up to 15 equities.
  • Exclusive access to low-MER "Series D" RBC mutual funds (most are around 1% MER).
  • Access to S&P research reports, Thomson/Reuters buy/sell consensus recommendations scales, and other research functions.
  • Various "screeners" that let you select stocks, mutual funds, and ETF's by narrowing down based on various criteria.
  • ALL registered accounts (RSP, TFSA, etc) allow you to hold both USD or CAD.
  • Access to "Practice Accounts" where you can play with fake $100,000 and get used to the RBC DI interface.
  • "Analyze and Rebalance" and "Manage My Goals" online software tools.
  • Lots and lots of "learning" stuff...tutorials, information about investing, etc.[/COLOR]
My first comment (well, question really I suppose): Does anyone else find that the data presented in RBC DI seems.....well......slightly buggy?

For instance, today (Saturday) I'm looking at my margin account holdings, which have been updated overnight to reflect Friday's action. I have a stock that closed at $4.30. In fact, that's what it says when I click on its name in my Holdings screen.

But, if I back out to the Holdings screen and look at it in the list of all my holdings, in the "Price" column, it says "$4.29".

Another surprise was that in the Activity screen, it says that the stock, which I purchased for $4.10, was purchased at "4.1". I know they just truncated the last zero, but it just seems like a careless oversight to have it shown like that. And would it kill them to include the dollar sign? ;)

Another interface quirk: When selling mutual funds, your holdings will show weird amounts and prices until the trade is finally settled. For instance, for a sale I initiated a couple of days ago, this is what it says for my sold mutual fund....the "remnants" of what was $30,000 worth of that fund:

Symbol Quantity Price MarketValue BookValue Change
MFC842 0.198 11.22 2.22 N/A N/A

I also sold all my shares in a stock a few days ago, and it still shows up in my Holdings screen....but with Quantity of "0", the current market price, a Market Value of "$0.00", and "N/A" next to everything else.

I know all this will eventually clear itself up, but in the meantime, it's a little weird to look at.

In short, I'm not all that impressed with the interface. I can move around it easily enough, but these little data quirks are.....unsettling, to say the least.

Other than that, I like the research reports and so on that RBC DI provides. I find I spend a lot of time in that "tab" of the interface. And since I have RBC banking accounts, and also have over $250,000 in assets and hopefully will get their Royal Circle status shortly, it's a good brokerage for me. But for folks with smaller portfolios who don't trade as often, and unless you have RBC banking accounts, I wouldn't necessarily recommend it.

Last question: Does anyone know if the IPO Centre gives us RBC DI folks some kind of "special access" to certain IPO's? Or is it the same info/access that's publicly available to any individual investor?
286 replies
Deal Addict
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Sep 26, 2007
3960 posts
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SC
Ya i always use the intraday one, the other ones are lagged.

Its the same think with selling all your stocks, it goes to 0 and shows all this information and then clears itself up. i figure it's because it takes time to settle everything.

my biggest quirk with them is that they always over charge on commissions and then fix it the next day. like i bought 2000 units of this stock, but the order went something like.. buy 500, buy 400 but 600 and buy 500, same or different prices. and they commissioned each one of those separately as if i bought them like that at separate times.
Member
Feb 9, 2008
395 posts
5 upvotes
China
I'm an RBC DI client.

I never really used other brokerages extensively, so I can't really compare, but RBC DI seems to always have "Technical Issues". Maybe once a month when you try to log in it'll have a warning sign saying "Technical Issue" and that something is wrong and they are looking into it. I also have Waterhouse but I only sign into that account maybe once every 2 months or so.
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Sep 26, 2007
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chinamansteve wrote:
Mar 6th, 2010 3:28 pm
I'm an RBC DI client.

I never really used other brokerages extensively, so I can't really compare, but RBC DI seems to always have "Technical Issues". Maybe once a month when you try to log in it'll have a warning sign saying "Technical Issue" and that something is wrong and they are looking into it. I also have Waterhouse but I only sign into that account maybe once every 2 months or so.
oh true i forgot about that. i think there were two just last month. one was like, oh you can't make transfers from your linked bank account cuz it's not working for some reason. And then the other one was like.. we don't know how much cash you have in your account. Thinking about it now.. we should really have expect more for what they charge.
[OP]
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Jan 9, 2010
648 posts
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Yeah, and aside from the technical issues, it's interesting to me that Questrade's interface is actually MUCH prettier cosmetically....not that their data is any less prone than RBC DI's to getting scrambled on occasion, but it at least looks like a modern-designed interface. RBC DI's (in fact, all of RBC's online banking, since it's all linked anyway) looks like a remnant from 1998 or something.

It just all contributes to the overall feeling that they're not putting much effort into it, which is a shame, given that you'd think RBC DI could just hire a top-notch web team for 500K or so and develop something that would really be tops in the industry, and maybe pay for itself in new customers.
Banned
Jun 20, 2009
59 posts
Ottawa
I am currently using RBC for personal banking. However, because I can link my account with my parents etc. in BMO investorline to get $9.95, I use BMO for investments.

I really like RBC's interface for banking.

Why did you choose RBC DI over TD, BMO, Questrade etc?
[OP]
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Jan 9, 2010
648 posts
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babixg: I actually started out with Questrade, because I was new to self-directed investing and wanted to get low fees, but wound up with RBC DI because of its integration with my existing RBC banking accounts (instant fund transfers during business hours). If I had TD banking accounts, I would've gone with TD's investing platform, or BMO's if I had BMO accounts, etc.

Plus, I just like the idea of having one central location for all my financial assets, rather than having to constantly go to two different locales, transfer funds back and forth, wait two or three business days for things to get transferred, etc etc. Call it "streamlining" :)

I also figured that since many of my Questrade trades were over 1,000 shares, and thus incurring $9.95 commissions, and since I have over $100K in assets and thus qualify for RBC DI's $9.95 trades, it didn't make any sense to keep Questrade over RBC DI.

The only thing I still have with Questrade is RSP accounts, since those can have USD. But if RBC DI ever gets that together, adios Questrade :)
Member
Jan 14, 2010
428 posts
67 upvotes
Re: the interface: Everytime I've logged onto Banking or DI for the past ~6 monthg (at least) I keep reading about all the great changes that will "soon be happening to our online banking." ??? when ???
Member
Mar 6, 2010
245 posts
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cocodc wrote:
Mar 7th, 2010 5:12 pm
Re: the interface: Everytime I've logged onto Banking or DI for the past ~6 monthg (at least) I keep reading about all the great changes that will "soon be happening to our online banking." ??? when ???
I'd like to know when too...
[OP]
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Jan 9, 2010
648 posts
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Same here.

And the thing of it is, the changes--at least, from what I can tell from the pictures they've shown--aren't even all that dramatic. You'd think after all that time, they'd come out with something bloody spectacular :)
[OP]
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Jan 9, 2010
648 posts
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By the way, I made a stock trade on March 2 selling all 400 shares of a stock I had, settled on March 5. Today, March 9, it's still showing up in my holdings with Quantity: 0. :rolleyes:
Deal Addict
Mar 14, 2005
1772 posts
23 upvotes
Quick question. Are you able to link the RBC Direct Investing account to a CIBC bank account for money transfers?
Thanks
[OP]
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Jan 9, 2010
648 posts
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xstatik wrote:
Mar 9th, 2010 9:10 am
Quick question. Are you able to link the RBC Direct Investing account to a CIBC bank account for money transfers?
Thanks
I don't believe so, no. In fact, now that you've focused my attention on this, this is probably one of the biggest drawbacks to RBC DI (I never thought about it, because I have RBC bank accounts). I've updated my initial post to reflect that.
Newbie
May 15, 2009
19 posts
xstatik wrote:
Mar 9th, 2010 9:10 am
Quick question. Are you able to link the RBC Direct Investing account to a CIBC bank account for money transfers?
Thanks
No, and that's the major flaw with RBC DI as far as I'm concerned. In order for flexibility, they demand a Royal Bank account with all the horrendous bank charges.

I did the paperwork and set up an EFT from my PC account but this is so painful in this day & age.

Also, until recently they allowed you to fund a trade from their MM/TBill account but now you actually have to sell a bunch of shares, buy the stock & then use any cash left over to repurchase MM/TBill shares. The MM/TBill activities take forever to come clean on their system.

I think their whole system needs to be overhauled not just their website.
[OP]
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Jan 9, 2010
648 posts
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Belizean Beach Bum wrote:
Mar 9th, 2010 9:52 am

I think their whole system needs to be overhauled not just their website.
I'm beginning to agree. Everything seems to take forever.

Do folks with mutual funds at other self-directed brokerages find it quick to sell/switch mutual funds? I initiate a switch/sale, and it seems to take at least five days for things to get transferred.
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