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Anyone else having trouble executing trades at Canadian bank-owned brokers. I can't trade online, phone lines - 90 min wait, online chat service offline. Brutal. Typically Canadian.

 

Maybe it's a sign of times. Trading volumes waaaay up.

dunno.

 

Ready to move to another "better" broker...

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They are all still charging trading fees too (among other fees), unreal... recently I wanted to add one of my holdings to a drip, I spent over 8 hours on hold across multiple calls over few weeks and finally just gave up without ever getting through to a person...

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They are all still charging trading fees too (among other fees), unreal... recently I wanted to add one of my holdings to a drip, I spent over 8 hours on hold across multiple calls over few weeks and finally just gave up without ever getting through to a person...

 

I'm with BMO, mostly due to inertia as opposed to loving their pricing or services.  Until recently I've been pretty content with customer service .  I could get through almost immediately at any time of the day.  But the past few months have been unreal.  Call wait times of over an hour, and numerous glitches on the platform that require a phone call to be addressed.

 

I had one issue that required numerous conversations because they kept telling me their "fix" would be reflected the next trading day... only to find it wasn't.  Minimum 4 hours on hold (in total) just to have them reinstate a symbol that disappeared from their system for no good reason.

 

Sounds like this nonsense isn't limited to BMO.

 

 

 

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I am selling a stock in my iTrade account today, the bid is lower than what's available in my IB account.

I placed my sell based on my IB bid.. it won't get executed... I can sell the stock in IB with higher BID...

 

I guess the 6.99 is not really 6.99.

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IBKR is the best I’ve used. But can only compare to BMO, TD, and itrade.

 

Yeah. I've used RBC, iTrade, and BMO. IBKR is way better than any of them. I compare executions between IB and RBC, and I save more on spreads than I pay in commissions. Plus the commissions are less.

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Head of BMO Investorline sent out this note the other day:

 

Hello,

First off, I want to thank you for continuing to invest with BMO InvestorLine. Over the last year, we’ve seen record levels of activity and demand with more than 2.5x trades year over year and a 65% increase in contact centre volume. As a result, call wait times are at an unacceptable level. We understand the frustration this causes and we are fully committed to improving service levels.

Last summer we started the transformation of our hiring process and have since quadrupled call centre hiring and reallocated resources from other areas of the bank. In our last training class, the number of new agents was seven times higher than pre-Covid levels and the majority of this group will be licenced to answer calls over the next three weeks. Our top priority in 2021 continues to be enhancing your investing experience. Here is a preview of the exciting new updates you’ll have this year:

Call Centre enhancements

To complement our Call Centre expansion, we’re building a new tool so you don’t have to wait on the phone for an agent - we’ll call you. Coming this spring.

New InvestorLine 2.0 platform

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Head of BMO Investorline sent out this note the other day:

 

Hello,

First off, I want to thank you for continuing to invest with BMO InvestorLine. Over the last year, we’ve seen record levels of activity and demand with more than 2.5x trades year over year and a 65% increase in contact centre volume. As a result, call wait times are at an unacceptable level. We understand the frustration this causes and we are fully committed to improving service levels.

Last summer we started the transformation of our hiring process and have since quadrupled call centre hiring and reallocated resources from other areas of the bank. In our last training class, the number of new agents was seven times higher than pre-Covid levels and the majority of this group will be licenced to answer calls over the next three weeks. Our top priority in 2021 continues to be enhancing your investing experience. Here is a preview of the exciting new updates you’ll have this year:

Call Centre enhancements

To complement our Call Centre expansion, we’re building a new tool so you don’t have to wait on the phone for an agent - we’ll call you. Coming this spring.

New InvestorLine 2.0 platform

 

They haven't been willing to take written message for months. Which makes sense, because I'm sure its faster for an agent to verify you then listen to your issue, then deal with it. Getting a question in writing from a pre verified source is probably slower...

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  • 1 month later...

seriously thinking of moving everything to IKBR (Canada). Those of you using IKBR in Canada, can you easily connect your IKBR accounts with your regular bank account? Any issues moving $$$ back an forth? Can you participate in the securities lending, for extra yield, with IKBR in Canada? Can you hold an RESP at IKBR ( haven't seen reference to that type of account at IKBR )...

 

I see the margin rates ( not like I use a ton of leverage...however ) are like half of what I'm currently paying...

 

Overall, are you happy with them?

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seriously thinking of moving everything to IKBR (Canada). Those of you using IKBR in Canada, can you easily connect your IKBR accounts with your regular bank account? Any issues moving $$$ back an forth? Can you participate in the securities lending, for extra yield, with IKBR in Canada? Can you hold an RESP at IKBR ( haven't seen reference to that type of account at IKBR )...

 

I see the margin rates ( not like I use a ton of leverage...however ) are like half of what I'm currently paying...

 

Overall, are you happy with them?

 

Disclosure: long IBKR

 

As a Canadian, there are a few main advantages

1. Generally easier to connect with other banks (my wife has TD and they only let you transfer to a TD account). I even have IBKR connected with a USD margin account at a Big Bank CAVEAT: they are extra cautious with both deposits and withdrawals. So it is easier to get money in and out. But it is slower. And they have weird limits on $$$ value.

2. Significantly better foreign exchange rates

3. Buying international stocks

4. Margin rates

5. Online elections for spinoffs and other corporate transactions

6. Better executions

 

I don't lend out shares, but I believe it is available for Canadians. RESPs -- all my registered accounts are still with a Big Bank so I am not sure. I only use IBKR for my US/international shares.

 

I much prefer IBKR, but I don't trade my Canadian stocks enough to bother with a transfer. For my US stocks, the ForEx rates alone made the transfer worthwhile.

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IBKR won't do some of the less prominent Canadian  registered accounts. For instance, RESP and LIRA are both a no-go.

 

I'm about to move my RRSP there out of general dissatisfaction with my existing Canadian big bank broker.

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I basically don't trade much...do you mean level II quotes and such? I don't need any of that.

 

Haha. No, you have to pay for any real-time data. They give you delayed quotes for free. You can get basic real-time quotes for free from Yahoo and then just use one of their algos. But I suspect most people just pay up for data. IIRC, you can get the data for free if you trade enough but I just get my data elsewhere.

 

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IBKR is very bad for service. Often their staff won't even respond or are just incompetent. If you look at reviews , they tend to get under 3 stars. Clients aren't very happy. Sure costs are cheap, but it takes a certain type of person to be bought off with money at the expense of other important considerations in life.

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IBKR is very bad for service. Often their staff won't even respond or are just incompetent. If you look at reviews , they tend to get under 3 stars. Clients aren't very happy. Sure costs are cheap, but it takes a certain type of person to be bought off with money at the expense of other important considerations in life.

 

IBKR's service is getting worse over the years. The trading restriction for OTC stocks because they think you are an affiliated shareholder is getting ridiculous: first they flag you as an affiliated and restricted the trading; then only the compliance personnel can remove the restriction (not the service guy you get on the phone); and when you submit a ticket you are ignored; at last when the restriction is removed, it's only for two weeks and you need to repeat the steps again!

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IBKR is very bad for service. Often their staff won't even respond or are just incompetent. If you look at reviews , they tend to get under 3 stars. Clients aren't very happy. Sure costs are cheap, but it takes a certain type of person to be bought off with money at the expense of other important considerations in life.

 

I wouldn't say bad, I would say very inconsistent. For example:

 

2020 I moved a lot of accounts over to IBKR and as such triggered some knowyourcustomer baloney.

 

So someone at IBKR reviewed my accounts, the timing/amount/source of money transfers, etc. and I received some standard email asking questions and requesting account statements about the such. Now, I am a reasonable person. I'll sit down for 5 minutes and reply to your questions, but I'm not about to spend an hour digging up old account statements to verify money flows. So I simply ignored that aspect of their request.

 

To my relief I received a response next day, saying "all good! thank you for the explanation!", and that was that. Anecdotal but make of it what you will.

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^The above is completely standard operating procedure at almost every firm these days. Especially KYC and AML stuff. Everyone is in full blown over your ass mode. That said, they are "required" to ask those questions. You are not generally required to answer. Or give satisfactory answers. But they need to show they "tried". Its all very predictable and par for the course. Same goes for the new "trusted contact" rule.

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Message on TD Online Broker Today

 

"We are currently experiencing issues with order entry. You will not be able to edit or cancel orders submitted. You may also experience delays receiving fill reports in your Order Status. Please use caution when placing your orders; they may have been filled.

 

We are investigating the issue and working to restore service as soon as possible."

 

!

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IBKR is very bad for service. Often their staff won't even respond or are just incompetent. If you look at reviews , they tend to get under 3 stars. Clients aren't very happy. Sure costs are cheap, but it takes a certain type of person to be bought off with money at the expense of other important considerations in life.

 

IBKR's service is getting worse over the years. The trading restriction for OTC stocks because they think you are an affiliated shareholder is getting ridiculous: first they flag you as an affiliated and restricted the trading; then only the compliance personnel can remove the restriction (not the service guy you get on the phone); and when you submit a ticket you are ignored; at last when the restriction is removed, it's only for two weeks and you need to repeat the steps again!

 

LOL, this just happened to me on a position at the exact time I realized I had mistakenly overvalued it. So I was desperate to sell while the market was hot and there were lots of buy orders so I did not get stuck with the position but it took so long to get trading approval that I'm not liquidating at a loss.

 

But I've found that if you have a master account and call their special line you get far better service.

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