CIBC Investor’s Edge Review

CIBC Investor’s Edge is the discount brokerage of CIBC, one of the largest banks in Canada. It offers a low, flat commission of $6.95 per online trade for stocks and ETFs. Clients have access to a full range of account types and investment options, online and mobile trading, and free research and analysis. The platform is best suited for investors looking for low trading fees in a big bank brokerage environment. It’s also a great option for existing CIBC banking clients who want to self-manage their investments.

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Pricing

8/10

User Experience

9/10

Online Security

9.5/10

Customer Service

6.5/10



Best for:

 

  • Low trading fees
  • Wide range of account types and investment options
  • Quotes and Research

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What is CIBC Investor’s Edge?

Backed by the security and dependability of CIBC, the fifth-largest bank in Canada, CIBC Investor’s Edge offers a comprehensive platform for do-it-yourself investors to build and manage their own portfolios.

A newly redesigned website combined with low cost stock and ETF trading has launched CIBC Investor's Edge into the upper tier for the best trading platforms in Canada.

At $6.95 per online equity trade, Investor’s Edge offers competitive trading fees when compared to other Canadian big bank brokerage platforms and is only slightly more expensive than Questrade in terms of stock trading fees.

Clients can trade stocks, ETFs, options, mutual funds and more online or through a mobile app, keep on top of markets with a vast library of research, and set up alerts to monitor stocks and get real-time quotes.

CIBC Investor’s Edge Fees

CIBC Investor’s Edge does not charge annual account fees for TFSAs or RESPs. It charges $100 per year for RRSPs when the account balance is $25,000 or less, but this fee is waived for balances greater than $25,000. Non-registered accounts with less than $10,000 cost $100 per year, but this fee is waived for balances greater than $10,000.

Investor’s Edge charges flat-fee pricing of $6.95 per online trade for Canadian and U.S. listed stocks and ETFs. Active traders who make more than 150 trades per quarter qualify for “Active Trader” pricing and pay $4.95 per online equity trade. Also, $5.95 per online trade for students with a CIBC Smart™ Account for students.

ProductFees
Stocks$6.95 per online trade
ETFs$6.95 per online trade
Options$6.95 per online trade + $1.25 per contract
Mutual FundsNo charge

CIBC Investor’s Edge Features

CIBC Investor’s Edge stands out from other big bank online brokers thanks to its newly redesigned website with advanced charting and analysis, convenient notifications and alerts, custom watch lists, and low trading fees on stocks and ETFs.

  
Annual fees$0 for TFSA, RESP, RRSP with more than $25,000, non-registered with more than $10,000

 

$100 for RRSP w/ less than $25,000 and non-registered w/ less than $10,000
Minimum investment$0
Types of accountsRRSP, TFSA, RESP, non-registered, LIRA, RRIF, LIF, Corporate, and more
Automatic Portfolio RebalancingNo
Automatic DepositsYes (from a linked CIBC bank account)
Transfer fees $135
Inactivity fees$0
AccessWebsite, app, online chat, phone
Customer servicePoor
Trading FeesBasic: Flat fee of $6.95 per online trade for stocks and ETFs

“Active Trader” pricing: $4.95 per online trade for stocks and ETFs when trading more than 150 times per quarter.

Student Pricing: $5.95 per online trade for students with a CIBC Smart™ Account.

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Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Low fee stock and ETF trades
  • No account fees for TFSAs and RESPs
  • Market research and custom alerts
  • Backed by one of Canada’s largest banks
  • Newly designed website

Cons

  • $100 fee for RRSP and non-registered accounts with small balances
  • No commission-free ETFs
  • Reputation for poor customer service (at the bottom of Surviscor’s annual brokerage comparison)

How does CIBC Investor’s Edge compare?

While CIBC Investor’s Edge fares favourably against other big bank online brokers, how does it compare against even lower-cost options like Questrade and Wealthsimple Trade? Let’s take a look:

BrokerCost per online tradeCost per online ETF purchaseOptions contractRegistered account feesMore Info
CIBC Investor’s Edge$6.95$6.95$6.95 + $1.25/contract$0 for TFSA, RESP, and RRSPs with balances greater than $25,000

 

$100 for RRSPs with balances less than $25,000
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Questrade$4.95-$9.95$0$9.95 + $1/contract$0Visit Site
Wealthsimple Trade$0$0N/A$0Visit Site

CIBC Investor’s Edge vs. Questrade

CIBC Investor’s Edge stacks up well against Questrade, which is our top choice for the best online brokerage in Canada. Investor’s Edge clients can access all of the same account types and most of the investment options that are offered through Questrade (with the exception of foreign exchange trading).

Questrade has lower trading fees, as their stock trades are as low as $4.95 compared to $6.95 flat fee at CIBC, and Questrade clients can purchase ETFs for free (with a fee ranging from $4.95-$9.95 for selling), whereas CIBC Investor’s Edge clients pay $6.95 for both buying and selling ETFs.

CIBC Investor’s Edge gets the nod in terms of being backed by one of Canada’s big five banks – especially for existing CIBC banking clients who can easily toggle between their brokerage account and online banking, plus fund their accounts in the same day.

CIBC Investor’s Edge vs. Wealthsimple Trade

Wealthsimple Trade presents a formidable challenge to CIBC Investor’s Edge, since Wealthsimple Trade clients can buy and sell Canadian and U.S. listed stocks and ETFs for free instead of paying $6.95 per online trade.

But CIBC Investor’s Edge has the edge over Wealthsimple Trade for investors who need to open more than just an RRSP, TFSA, or non-registered account (i.e. LIRA, RESP, RRIF). CIBC Investor’s Edge offers every account type.

Finally, Wealthsimple Trade does not allow its clients to hold USD which means investors get dinged foreign exchange fees every time they purchase or sell a U.S. listed stock or ETF. CIBC Investor’s Edge clients can hold USD in all registered accounts except for RESPs.

Best Online Brokerage Accounts in Canada for 2021

Inside CIBC Investor’s Edge

The CIBC Investor’s Edge platform got a refresh with more improvements promised for this year. Here’s a look at the updated platform:

The biggest change is the better organization of your information on the main dashboard, plus the addition of more user-friendly menus on both the desktop and mobile platforms.

The quotes and research area gives clients a quick overview of the Canadian and U.S. markets, activity and news at a glance:

Investor’s Edge makes it easy to trade stocks and ETFs with a three-step order entry process for both Canadian and US listed securities:

Overall, the newly refreshed Investor’s Edge platform was well executed and offers a great user experience. Trading is simple and easy to navigate, and clients will enjoy the smartly organized dashboard.

FAQs

CIBC Investor’s Edge is a solid online brokerage platform that offers low-cost stock and ETF trading at $6.95 per online trade (the lowest among all big bank brokerages). It's newly designed website gives the platform a modern look and feel. CIBC Investor’s Edge is a great choice for DIY investors who want to reduce trading fees and stay within a big bank environment. It’s also great for existing CIBC banking customers who want to self-direct their own investments.
CIBC Investor’s Edge does not charge an annual fee for TFSAs or RESPs. RRSPs are free for balances greater than $25,000 but cost $100 per year for balances under $25,000. Non-registered accounts are free for balances greater than $10,000 but cost $100 per year for balances under $10,000.

Final Call: Is CIBC Investor’s Edge Worth It?

CIBC Investor’s Edge gets top marks for its newly refreshed website and updated platform. They also offer the lowest trading fees of any big bank online brokerage platform and compare favourably to Questrade in terms of fees and the wide availability of account types and investment options. Bonus points for an extremely intuitive three-step entry process for trading stocks and ETFs.

All of this to say, CIBC Investor’s Edge is the top choice for self-directed investors who want to stay within the friendly confines of a bank-owned online brokerage with strong security measures.

More specifically, if you’re an existing CIBC banking customer who wants to start self-managing your investments then CIBC Investor’s Edge is certainly worth it. You’ll be able to fund your Investor’s Edge account within the same day (versus two business days coming from an external bank) and toggle seamlessly between CIBC online banking and CIBC Investor’s Edge so you can keep all of your banking and investments in one place.