...Winter 2010 - Online Discount Brokerage Review
TD Waterhouse retained its title as the number one online discount brokerage firm in Canada; however, the next four firms are all bunched together and within a few small pushes to compete for top Investor bragging rights. Surviscor focused on the Investor and looked at three types of Investor; the passive investor, the serious investor and the active investor. TD Waterhouse widened its lead on Credential Direct who remains in second while Qtrade moved back to third, up two spots, in a tightly contested battle for third with BMO InvestorLine and RBC Direct Investing.
The results produced, in most cases, higher scores for the firms as the industry continues to expand its functionality. The Market Intelligence category continues to be the main area of focus which includes Research and analytical tools. In many cases, the ability, or inability, of the firms to respond to Surviscor's 'anonymous' emails via the Customer Email Responsiveness (CER) program proves to be the deciding factor for the firm's ranking. The online brokerage industry remains well ahead of the online banking industry at an average response rate of 39 hours; however, the number is well below the Surviscor Platinum standard of 6 hours. The 2009 CER Year-In-Review is now available at Surviscor and provides valuable insight into the ability of financial services firms in Canada to respond to a prospective customer.
The scorCard is now the most comprehensive online brokerage analysis in North America with the number of sub-categories exceeding 30. The scorCard identifies the Investor needs with easy to understand categories. In the near future, Investors will have the ability to use the Surviscor data along with their own criteria to determine which firm best serves their needs.
Each company's results and general information is available to users by linking on the company names. Participating firms allow visitors to view more information, including screen shots and a "what's new"section. The overview page also provides visitors the ability to link to various key area of the company's site. Surviscor continues to develop an industry firm suggestion tool designed to return a small list of suggested firms that Surviscor would recommend based on the latest scorCard results as well as the user's preferences.
Surviscor reviews all Canadian discount brokerage firms including bank-owned and independent firms.Traditional day trading firms are included providing they meet the minimum requirements for inclusion. The Firms are evaluated for the online features and functionality they posses.
The minimum requirements are:
- Transactional capabilities in Canadian and US markets
- Physical location in Canada with minimum registration requirement of 5 provinces
- Ability to establish a registered account
- Minimum account opening balance requirement no greater than $10,000 CDN
The Main Categories:
|1. ||Getting Started |
The Getting Started category explores the features and functionality available on the public site. The primary areas of analysis are the application process and the email responsiveness available to both customers and non-customers. The Customer Email Responsiveness data is available on this site under the Services tab or http://surviscor.com/Services/CER/Default.aspx.
|2. ||Website Design |
The Website Design category explores the general online experience of the user and the ability of the firm to provide an easy to use site. The primary areas of analysis are policies, customization and integration.
|3. ||Account Services |
The Account Services category explores the various customer touch points and online servcies. The primary areas of analysis are the available e-services and the access of account informastion details.
|4. ||Market Intelligence |
The Market Intelligence category focuses on the informational aspect of all market intelligence available to users.
|5. ||Website Transactions |
The Website Transactions category focuses on the online order screens and the feature and experience available to the customer. The primary area of analysis is the equity order process.
|6. ||Online Resources |
The Online Resources category focuses on the level of investment and planning tools available to the online user and analyzes the level of supporting education content and features.
|7. ||Cost of Services |
The Cost of Services category focuses on the cost of doing business with the firm by establishing a basket of transactions. The basket is established using three Investor profiles; passive, serious and active. All firms are analyzed using identical transactions.
Next Analysis: Investor:Winter 2011 and Trader TBD
...Thanks for checking out my page. Red Mars
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