By Yeap Ming Feng

Assuming you are all ready to kickass in your investing journey, there are a few things you need to consider to get started.

Brokerage Account – Factors To Consider

With your CDP account settled, one can go “shopping” for the best brokerage account. Very much like opening a savings account, there are a few factors one should look out for.

1. Brokerage Fees

The brokerage fee is charged by the platform provider to conduct transactions between buyers and sellers.

Most brokerage firms charge based on a percentage of the size of transactions and involve a minimum fee, whichever is higher. We will compare them to provide you with the cheapest brokerage account later in this article.

2. CDP or Custodian. Who Holds The Stocks?

The CDP securities account is where all the stocks you bought are deposited. One can be using multiple brokerage firms to trade, but all the stocks bought will be stored in one CDP securities account.

Stocks deposited in a CDP account belong to your name. In contrast, stocks in a custodian account belong under the name of the brokerage firm.

Key Takeaways:

  • Brokerage accounts that hold your shares as a custodian are the cheapest.
  • Investors should, however, determine if he is willing to bear the risk.
  • DBS Vickers Cash Upfront account is definitely worth looking at, should you have the sum of money you wish to invest.
  • Whereas, if you are a more seasoned investor, the functions of the platforms which each firm provides may be something you wish to look at.

Comparison of Brokerage Fees

We compiled a table of the popular brokerage firms in Singapore and their fees. All the trading fees comparison are based on online or mobile trades carried out in Singapore market using the below 3 types of trading methods:

  1. Stock brokerage fees for online trading
  2. Stock brokerage fees for broker-assisted trading
  3. Stock brokerage fees for cash up front

Type 1: Stock Brokerage (Online)

For trading fees based on online trades done in Singapore market.

Stock Brokerage (online) Fees Comparison

table 1

Base on the above comparison, we can see that the rates are rather close to each other for CDP accounts. Holding your stocks in a custodian account is cheaper as compared to holding them in the CDP, but one will risk losing all his stocks should he trade with a custodian account that ends up going bankrupt.

Type 2: Stock Brokerage (Broker Assisted)

For investors who use a broker for their trading, the comparison is as per below. In this case, DBS Vickers is the cheapest.

Stock Brokerage (Broker Assisted) Fees Comparison

table 2

Type 3: Stock Brokerage (Cash Upfront)

Lastly, for those looking for cash upfront service. Cash up front requires an investor to deposit cash upfront into an account with the brokerage firms before he is able to buy stocks. The reason that it is generally cheaper is due to the risk of a customer not paying for the shares he bought being zero.

Stock Brokerage (Cash Upfront) Comparison

table 3

For cash up front, DBS and UOB KayHian is the cheapest. The main difference, however, is that for DBS cash upfront investments you own the shares while for other banks, the bank is the custodian for your shares.

This article originally appeared on Seedly’s blog.