Investing

National Bank Direct Brokerage Thoughts and Experiences?

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  • Mar 2nd, 2021 11:14 pm
[OP]
Member
Dec 20, 2010
385 posts
306 upvotes
Toronto

National Bank Direct Brokerage Thoughts and Experiences?

Anybody use them?

I'm getting frustrated with the constant service outages at Scotiabank. They had three in the last three weeks. I know there were widespread brokerage outages two weeks ago with the GME fiasco but based on comparing the outage reports online, they took the longest to restore service. And they had another random outage yesterday afternoon. So I'm considering opening an account with another broker.

$0.95 per stock trade for active traders seems attractive. I already have banking products with them.

A few questions for those that have an account:

Have you experienced any outages with NBDB?

Are transfers between bank accounts to the brokerage account instantaneous?

Do they perform a credit check when opening a margin account? How long does the account opening process take if you are already a banking client?

How is their user interface and customer service?

How are their Level 2 quotes? Scotia iTrade provides free data for active traders but their Level 2 is kinda useless for US tickers because they only display the best bid and ask for each market maker and the Nasdaq instead of a more complete order book. So I'm currently using a third party service.

Are there ECN fees for pre-market and after-hours trading?

Do they allow you to trade OTC stocks? If so, do they allow stop loss, stop limit, and trailing stop orders on these stocks?

Any other thoughts?
16 replies
Newbie
Aug 15, 2016
89 posts
115 upvotes
I don't have answers to all your questions but here are a few thoughts after using NBDB for the last year.
-Good user interface, no outages or issues buying/selling
-Fees are low with $7 trades and fee ETFs if you buy 100+
-Customer service has been hit and miss. Opening registered accounts has been a pain and I have had to call in many times. It usually takes 30 mins to 1.5 hours to get ahold of someone. If you use Norbert's Gambit to exchange currency, you have to wait this length of time to talk to a trader/broker.
-I believe they only show the bid/ask and not full level 2
Jr. Member
Jan 24, 2013
196 posts
168 upvotes
Rainy River
Seems as though we're hearing a theme of poor customer service for several of the discount brokerages. My experience is that NBDB's service is somewhat better than RBC DI and Questrade which are the other ones I use. Hold times are long if you call first thing in the morning, sometimes you can key in your phone number for a callback rather than waiting on hold. When I've called in later in the day sometimes no option to key in your phone number for call back. I like the free ETF's if you buy or sell 100 shares or more of an ETF. I also like Norbert's Gambit using DLR/DLR.U for no commission.

I don't like the fact that you can't bill pay from online banking into NBDB. You have to link up your account, go to NBDB website and pull in the money and wait a few days for it to clear.

On the plus side the customer service people I've dealt with once you do get through have been very competent and skilled.
[OP]
Member
Dec 20, 2010
385 posts
306 upvotes
Toronto
retireyoung55 wrote: Seems as though we're hearing a theme of poor customer service for several of the discount brokerages. My experience is that NBDB's service is somewhat better than RBC DI and Questrade which are the other ones I use. Hold times are long if you call first thing in the morning, sometimes you can key in your phone number for a callback rather than waiting on hold. When I've called in later in the day sometimes no option to key in your phone number for call back. I like the free ETF's if you buy or sell 100 shares or more of an ETF. I also like Norbert's Gambit using DLR/DLR.U for no commission.

I don't like the fact that you can't bill pay from online banking into NBDB. You have to link up your account, go to NBDB website and pull in the money and wait a few days for it to clear.

On the plus side the customer service people I've dealt with once you do get through have been very competent and skilled.
Do you have a bank account with NB or are you pulling in from another bank?
Deal Addict
User avatar
Oct 14, 2015
1311 posts
1123 upvotes
Charlee Wayne has reviewed all Canadian online brokers.

Here is his review on National Bank.

Member
Dec 12, 2016
345 posts
309 upvotes
EddySaver wrote: Do you have a bank account with NB or are you pulling in from another bank?
You can bill pay into NBDB. Just search for NBIN and enter your NBDB account number, it’ll post to your account within 1-2 business days.
Member
Dec 12, 2016
345 posts
309 upvotes
retireyoung55 wrote: Seems as though we're hearing a theme of poor customer service for several of the discount brokerages. My experience is that NBDB's service is somewhat better than RBC DI and Questrade which are the other ones I use. Hold times are long if you call first thing in the morning, sometimes you can key in your phone number for a callback rather than waiting on hold. When I've called in later in the day sometimes no option to key in your phone number for call back. I like the free ETF's if you buy or sell 100 shares or more of an ETF. I also like Norbert's Gambit using DLR/DLR.U for no commission.

I don't like the fact that you can't bill pay from online banking into NBDB. You have to link up your account, go to NBDB website and pull in the money and wait a few days for it to clear.

On the plus side the customer service people I've dealt with once you do get through have been very competent and skilled.
You can bill pay into NBDB. Just search for NBIN and enter your NBDB account number, it’ll post to your account within 1-2 business days.
[OP]
Member
Dec 20, 2010
385 posts
306 upvotes
Toronto
Here2day2 wrote: You can bill pay into NBDB. Just search for NBIN and enter your NBDB account number, it’ll post to your account within 1-2 business days.
Thanks, I would prefer instantaneous transfers between NB bank account and brokerage account. Guess NB is behind other banks that way but compensates with lower commissions.
Jr. Member
Jan 27, 2017
143 posts
61 upvotes
EddySaver wrote: Anybody use them?

I'm getting frustrated with the constant service outages at Scotiabank. They had three in the last three weeks. I know there were widespread brokerage outages two weeks ago with the GME fiasco but based on comparing the outage reports online, they took the longest to restore service. And they had another random outage yesterday afternoon. So I'm considering opening an account with another broker.

$0.95 per stock trade for active traders seems attractive. I already have banking products with them.

A few questions for those that have an account:

Have you experienced any outages with NBDB?

Are transfers between bank accounts to the brokerage account instantaneous?

Do they perform a credit check when opening a margin account? How long does the account opening process take if you are already a banking client?

How is their user interface and customer service?

How are their Level 2 quotes? Scotia iTrade provides free data for active traders but their Level 2 is kinda useless for US tickers because they only display the best bid and ask for each market maker and the Nasdaq instead of a more complete order book. So I'm currently using a third party service.

Are there ECN fees for pre-market and after-hours trading?

Do they allow you to trade OTC stocks? If so, do they allow stop loss, stop limit, and trailing stop orders on these stocks?

Any other thoughts?
Before you make any changes, read this thread discount-brokerages-receive-up-8-650-du ... n-2445343/
There are currently BIG BIG promotions to transfer your brokerage account to other brokerages! You can make up to $8,650 doing that!
Jr. Member
Jan 27, 2017
143 posts
61 upvotes
EddySaver wrote: Lol, check the thread again, we already talked.

Thanks for bumping up this thread though.
Thanks EddySaver! You can change your down vote to up vote. I'm getting blasted on that one haha.

NBDB has one good thing going for it though - no charge commission on many (not all) ETFs if I recall.
Jr. Member
Jan 24, 2013
196 posts
168 upvotes
Rainy River
Here2day2 wrote: You can bill pay into NBDB. Just search for NBIN and enter your NBDB account number, it’ll post to your account within 1-2 business days.
Thanks for the tip on bill pay. It does work sorry for the misinformation of my previous thread. Was given a bum steer years ago by NBDB customer service personnel.
Deal Addict
Feb 10, 2018
1146 posts
788 upvotes
How do you link your bank account to the brokerage to withdraw funds?

I dont see that option on NBDB. It is very easy on Questrade.
Member
Nov 25, 2009
256 posts
205 upvotes
Edmonton
EddySaver wrote: Thanks, I would prefer instantaneous transfers between NB bank account and brokerage account. Guess NB is behind other banks that way but compensates with lower commissions.
in my experience the transfer was pretty quick. I initiate a pull from NBDB from my NB chequing and it shows up within minutes and the NB chequing showed it was debited too at the same time. Though I might be remembering wrong. I only use it for the free ETFs
[OP]
Member
Dec 20, 2010
385 posts
306 upvotes
Toronto
Thanks everyone for the answers. I signed up for an account last night. Will see how it goes.
Jr. Member
Jan 24, 2013
196 posts
168 upvotes
Rainy River
Was able to get reduced commissions $6.95 for being a National Bank client. I didn't want to pay any fees or be subject to MBM requirements so I just opened their High Interest Savings Account (which has no monthly fees) but only 1 free withdrawal per month and linked that with my National Bank Direct Brokerage account. Won't use the account for much of anything but I am getting the reduced commissions.

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