Online Brokerage New Account Promotions in Canada (2023)

There are a lot of online brokerage new account promotions available right now in Canada. We are looking for a new joint brokerage account and since I am a fan of new bank account promotions (such as a free iPad from RBC or $300 cash) to entice you to sign up, I thought we might as well do so with an online investment brokerage right?

Last updated July 2023

For our joint online brokerage account, we wanted a different online brokerage from what we use for our individual accounts (we have separate and joint finances). My husband uses TD Direct Investing and I use Questrade. We use TD Direct Investing for our RESP. Why not, I thought. I always like trying different online brokerage platforms.

New online brokerage promotions in Canada

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Online Brokerage New Account Promotions in Canada

Here are some new client online brokerage new account promotions in Canada for 2023 that might either lure you to switch to a new brokerage or encourage you to start up a new online brokerage account with their platform.

While I wouldn’t advocate for signing up for a discount or online brokerage account just for the cash back offer, I have to admit a big cash back offer is very attractive.

Especially if you don’t intend to trade very often and plan to just play it safely and index and chill.

Choosing an Online Brokerage in Canada

As a Canadian investor, there are other things to look at when you are selecting an online brokerage, including things like issues with downtime, how the dashboard or interface looks like and the ease of use, the regular trading fee, whether there is a fee for ETFs, are just a few things to consider.

Another factor to think about is whether you will be trading a lot.

Some of these offers cater more to active traders whereas other offers cater to the cash hungry (dangle that carrot, I’ll take it).

More importantly, is the customer service decent?

Easy passive income is pretty tempting just for signing up since you won’t have to get direct deposits or pre authorized transactions like for a banking promotion.

Finally, if you are transferring from another brokerage, you have to look for whether this new brokerage will cover or rebate your transfer out fee. Usually this can cost upwards to $150. Not all online brokerages will cover the fee. Some do, some don’t.

This post will review some promotions available for online brokerages in Canada and their deadlines. Also the qualifying criteria will be reviewed including the minimum amount for the desired cash bonus.

Related: Tangerine Investment Funds Review

Some online brokerages participating in these promotions and offers are: Scotia iTrade, TD Direct Investing (their WebBroker platform is amazing), BMO Investorline, CIBC Investor’s Edge, RBC Direct Investing, National Bank Direct Brokerage, and ongoing promotions from Questrade a discount brokerage, and Wealthsimple Trade, a zero commission based brokerage.

Here are some online brokerage new account promotions available in Canada.

Qtrade Direct InvestingTM New Account Promotion

Qtrade has been the #1 online brokerage in Canada for three years in a row, in the Globe and Mail 2022 Digital Broker Ranking.  Qtrade has received an “A” grade compared to the other online brokers for their seamless customer experience.

In fact, Qtrade has been number one 25 times over the last 17 years, in rankings done by the Globe & Mail, Surviscor, The Motley Fool and MoneySense.

Qtrade started in 2000 and now has over 100,000 users across Canada.  Their commissions are $8.75 but this is lower for investors under age 30 and investors with larger portfolios.  Also, it is commission free to buy and sell over 100+ ETFs.

Qtrade is available to Canadian residents in all provinces and territories.  Right now they have an up to $150 cash bonus promotion that ends October 31, 2023.

  • The bonus: Get up to a $150 cash back for a new Qtrade account you open and fund- if you fund $1000 you get $50 back, if you fund $10,000 you will get $100 back and so forth.
  • Deadline for account sign up: October 31, 2023
  • Qualifying criteria:
    • Open up a Qtrade account before October 31, 2023 and fund it with a minimum of $1000 in net assets
    • In addition, have at least 1 eligible trade fulfilled within 60 days of account opening
    • Eligible Qtrade accounts are:
      • Cash (individual or joint), margin (individual or joint), RESP, RRSP, RRIF, Spousal RRSP, Spousal RRIF, U.S. RRSP, U.S. RRIF, U.S. Spousal RRSP, U.S. Spousal RRIF or TFSA account
    • Enter the Qtrade promo code: OFFER150
  • Transfer in rebate: If you transfer funds from another brokerage, you can also receive up to $150 when you transfer in $15,000 or more to your Qtrade account
  • When will payout happen? The Cashback bonus will be paid within 60 days of meeting all Offer criteria (e.g. within 60 days of account opening as per the above qualifying conditions)

For more information click here for the $150 sign up bonus from Qtrade.

Here’s my Qtrade vs Questrade review and here’s a Qtrade review and a Questrade review.

Questrade Promotion

  • The bonus: $50 in free trades using Questrade offer code YOUNGANDTHRIFTY
  • Deadline for account sign up: No deadline, it’s an ongoing promotion
  • Qualifying criteria: Sign up for a new Self Directed Questrade account here
    • Or use the Questrade offer code YOUNGANDTHRIFTY
    • Trade up to 10 times ($4.95 per trade) without having to pay commission
    • For ETFs you don’t have to pay commission anyways
    • You’ll have to complete these trades within 30 days to get the $50 in free trades and fund your account with at least $1000
  • Coverage of transfer out fees: Yes. Transfer any amount and you can get a maximum rebate of $150/account
  • Typical trading commission: $4.95 per trade and $0 for ETF purchases (there are ECN fees but they are pennies)
Questrade offer code

I use Questrade (and have been a user since 2009) and like it. It is very no frills, sometimes there is downtime, but you get what you pay for. The charts are pretty basic but I use Wealthica to supplement. Here’s what Wealthica (known as Personal Capital of Canada) looks like.

Using Passiv in conjunction with Questrade for ETFs is a great way to rebalance your portfolio. Here’s a review of Passiv.

I love the free ETF commissions and it makes it very easy for me to dollar cost average on a monthly basis and not let my lizard brain take over my investing decisions.

You can also set up a Questrade Drip (it’s synthetic) when your dividends and distributions get paid out and save money on commissions.

Scotia itrade Promotion

  • The bonus: Up to $2000 in cash and $6.99/ trade until March 1, 2023 (use promo code C23)
  • Deadline for account sign up: March 1, 2023 (for cash and $6.99/trade)
  • Qualifying criteria:
    • For cash + $6.99 pricing:
    • Fund at least $5000 and you will get $100 cash
    • Fund at least $25,000 for $150 cash
    • Fund at least $100,000 for $500
    • Fund at least $500,000 for $1000
    • Fund at least $1,000,000 for $2000

If you fund at least $250,000 you will get Gold Membership.

If you fund at least $1,000,000 you will get Platinum Membership.

More details on Gold and Platinum membership can be found here.

You have to keep the funds in your Scotia iTrade account until at least June 30, 2023 to receive the cash or commission rebate.

You must maintain all of your accounts at Scotia iTRADE in good standing, and not be in a disallowed debit position. Also, you cannot have any outstanding margin calls due

  • When you will receive the bonus: July 31, 2023 is when you will receive your cash bonus or commission rebate for your equity fee trades
  • Coverage of transfer out fees: It is covered up to $150. The amount of the transfer-in fee charged by another Canadian broker will be credited to your New Scotia iTrade Account.
  • Normal trading commission: $9.99/ trade
  • Joint account: Available, but only one account holder will receive the cash bonus
  • Low Activity Fee: Waived if you have at least $10,000 invested.

For more information, you can click here for the Scotia iTrade promotion.

If you have a Scotiabank Ultimate Banking Package which normally costs $30.95 per month but it is waived if you keep $5000 minimum balance or $30,000 balance between the Ultimate Package and your MomentumPLUS Savings Account, you can get 5 free equity trades per year from ScotiaiTrade.

For the first year you can get 10 free equity trades at Scotia iTRADE in your first year (about a $100 value). These online brokerage new account promotions are based on calendar year, so if you sign up early in 2023, you will get the 10 free equity trades to use for all of 2023.

Here’s my review of the Scotiabank Ultimate Package, we ‘upgraded’ recently from the Preferred Package.

Here’s a chart of the Scotiabank iTrade Winter Offer 2023 reward:

This post may contain affiliate links. Please see’s disclaimer for more information.

We received our bonus as scheduled (within a few months of signing up and funding the account) from Scotia iTrade. Nice to have a little extra cash to invest!

If you already have a Scotia iTrade account, you are also eligible to participate in this promotion by funding an existing account (awesome!) but you need to fill out this form here and indicate which promotion you want to participate in (the cash and $6.99 pricing or the free stock and ETF trades).

TD Direct Investing Promotion

  • The bonus: Up to $5000 in cash for signing up as a new client in one of these accounts
    • Cash, TFSA, Margin, or RRSP account (RESP and RDSP are not eligible)
    • Transfer $3000 to $49,999 you get $300
    • Transfer $50,000 to $99,999 for $400
    • Put in $100,000 to $249,999 and you get $500
    • Transfer $250,000 to $499,999 and you get $700
    • If you transfer more than $500,000 you get $1000
    • If you transfer $1,000,000 to $1,999,999 you get $2000
    • If you transfer more than $2,000,000 you get $5000
    • Extra $100 if you set up one Monthly Contribution Plan (“MCP”) or Pre-Authorized Debit (“PAD”) of a minimum of $100 before April 30, 2022
    • Your bonus will be paid out to your account on August 31, 2022
  • Deadline for account sign up: March 1, 2023 <— There’s nothing active right now
  • Qualifying criteria:
    • Open up a new account and use promo code  INVESTNOW
    • Then transfer at least $3000 in eligible assets by April 30, 2023
    • Maintain it until June 30, 2023
    • Set a goal or place a trade before June 30, 2023
    • The transfer cannot be from TD Direct Investing, TD Wealth Financial Planning and TD Wealth Private Investment Advice. It has to be from another Canadian financial institution or from a TD Canada Trust account.
    • Coverage of transfer out fees: Up to $150 when more than $25,000 in assets are transferred from another financial institution
  • Typical trading commission: $9.99 flat rate (unless you’re an active trader, it’s $7/trade)

For more on the TD Direct Investing Offer, click here.

Here’s my TD Direct Investing WebBroker review.

TD Easy Trade Promotion

TD Easy Trade is new. Is is an app only trading platform (I think they are trying to compete with Wealthsimple Trade) and it features 50 Commission Free Trades per year and unlimited ETF trades but only of their TD ETFs.

This resets January 1.

There are no monthly or quarterly account maintenance fees with TD Easy Trade. You can hold both US and Canadian currency in your TD Easy Trade account but you can’t fund it with USD you have to initially convert your Canadian dollars to US dollars.

  • The bonus: 50 Commission free trades
  • Deadline for account sign up: No deadlin

Here’s more information on the TD Easy Trade commission free trades.

BMO Investorline Promotion

The BMO Investorline New Account Promotion is back!

  • The bonus: Up to $3100 cash back
  • Deadline for account sign up: May 31, 2023
  • Qualifying criteria: Enter the promo code: SDCASHEDB when signing up for one of these accounts. You also have to be a BMO customer.
    • BMO InvestorLine Cash or Margin (individual or joint), Corporate, Sole Proprietorship, TFSA, RRSP, RRIF, Spousal RRSP/RRIF
    • Transfer a minimum of $5,000 (cash or assets) before June 30, 2023 and hold it until November 30, 2023
      • $5,000 – $24,999 $300
      • $25,000 – $99,999 $400
      • $100,000 – $249,999 $550
      • $250,000 – $499,999 $800
      • $500,000 – $999,999 $1,500
      • $1,000,000+ $3100

This BMO Investorline Promotion is better than previous promotions because you need less invested for more cash back!

  • Then you will be paid your cash bonus on the week of be paid the week of December 11, 2023
    • One cash reward for a joint account, and can’t have applied within the last 12 months
  • Coverage of transfer out fees: Does not look like they cover the typical $150 fee
  • Typical trading commission: $9.95/trade

For more information on the BMO Investorline campaign offer, click here.

Sometimes they refer you via an email invitation for this cash offer privately if you are a selected BMO Investorline client.

If you plan to use BMO for banking too, they have a BMO new account offer of $450 cash.

CIBC Investor's Edge Review and Promotion

CIBC Investors Edge Promotion

  • The bonus: Up to $3000 cash back. Also if you use Promo code EDGE695 you can get 100 free equity or ETF trades for the next 2 years
  • Deadline for account sign up: March 1, 2023 <— There is nothing active right now
  • Pay $6.95 per trade with CIBC Investor’s Edge
  • Qualifying criteria:
    • Eligible accounts include:
      • Investment Account
      • Self-Directed Retirement Savings Plan or Retirement Income Fund Account
      • Self-Directed Tax-Free SavingsAccount
      • Locked-in Retirement Savings Plan
      • Locked-in Income Fund or Higher Learning Education Savings Plan
    • Transfer at least $5,000 to get $50
      • Transfer at least $25,000 to get $200
      • Put in a least $100,000 to get $500 in cash
      • Deposit market value of at least $500,000 for $1500 in cash
      • Transfer at least $1,000,000 for $3000 in cash
  • If funds are received before December 31, 2022, you will receive the cash back the week of June 19 2023
    • If the money is deposited before March 1 2023, you will receive the cash back the week of August 28, 2023
    • Transferred Assets must be transferred to CIBC Investor’s Edge from an account that is not held at any of the CIBC group of companies (has to be new money and not from CIBC Wood Gundy, for example)
  • Coverage of transfer out fees: Doesn’t look like they cover the $150 fee to transfer out from another financial institution
  • Typical trading commission: $6.95/trade for US/Canadian equities
  • Student discount: There is a student discount for trades for students

For more information on the CIBC Investor’s Edge cash back promotion, click here.

Here are other CIBC promotions going on right now.

The general online reviews of CIBC’s Investor’s Edge are not glowing (poor customer service and old looking interface).

HSBC InvestDirect Promotion

  • The bonus: Up to $2088 Cash
  • Deadline for account sign up: February 28, 2023 <— Nothing active right now
  • Qualifying criteria: You have to transfer in the designated amount (see chart below) must be deposited into any single new or existing account within the offer period, and only one account per customer (sole or joint) is eligible for the bonus.. For clarity, only one HIDC account per customer, either a sole or joint account, is eligible for the Bonus.
  • Also, if you are under 30 years old, a minimum of $1500 needs to be transferred to get the bonus and if you are OVER 30 years old, you need a minimum of $25,000 to be transferred.
  • Coverage of transfer out fees: A maximum of $200 in transfer out fees will be reimbursed by HSBC
  • Typical trading commission: $6.88 per trade with a reduced commission for active traders

Here is more information on HSBC’s Winter Investment Bonus Offer.

HSBC InvestDirect does have another promotion going on right now until September 28, 2023, but it encourages trading. You can get $2 back for each commissionable trade that you make, up to a cash back of $500. That would mean.. 250 trades?

RBC DIrect Investing Promotion

  • The bonus: 100 Commission Free Trades for 2 years
  • Deadline for account sign up: November 30, 2023
  • Qualifying criteria:
    • Open up an RBC Direct Investing AccountUser promo code WNI14
    • Rebates happen 3 to 5 business days after your trade and you are covered for 365 days after you receive your RBC Direct Investing Account confirmation email
    • There is no minimum deposit
  • Coverage of transfer out fees: Doesn’t look like it. “You will be solely responsible for the payment of any applicable fees, penalties, charges or other amounts associated with or connected to the Offer or with the transfer of any assets to Eligible Account”
  • Typical trading commission: $9.95/trade and $6.95 for active traders (150+/quarter)

Here’s more information on the RBC Direct Investing promotion.

If you are already an RBC customer, there is a better offer for you.

  • The bonus: Up to $2000 cash back
  • Deadline for account sign up: August 23, 2023
  • Qualifying criteria
    • Open up an RBC Direct Investing Account (have to be existing RBC client) and use promo code WNH14
    • Deposit at least $5000 before October 27, 2023 and hold it there until at least December 1, 2023
    • The cash back will be deposited into your account around October 27, 2023
  • Coverage of transfer out fees:  RBC Direct will cover $200 of transfer fees when you transfer $15,000 or more
  • Typical trading commission: $9.95/trade and $6.95 for active traders (150+/quarter)

For more information click here.

National Bank Direct Brokerage Promotion

National Bank Direct Brokerage Free Commissions
  • The bonus: 100 free trades for one year There is no cash back, but as of August 23, 2021, National Bank has slashed all commissions on trades and ETFs
  • Deadline for account sign up: December 31, 2020 This is an ongoing thing and not part of a promotion
  • Qualifying criteria:
    • Open up a National Bank Direct Brokerage Account and use promo code FREE2020
    • Subscribe to e-delivery
    • Get 100 free trades of stocks, options and ETFs for one year
  • Coverage of transfer out fees: NBDB will give you a rebate of up to $135 plus taxes if you transfer at least $10,000 or $20,000 into the account (6 months of your transfer and they will refund up to $135+taxes of the transfer fees)
  • Typical trading commission: $9.95/trade or $6.95/trade if you are a National Bank client, and $0 ETFs if you purchase in units of 100 (that’s quite a high number of ETFs you have to purchase though, it discourages dollar cost averaging, in my opinion)
  • Newcomers, Professionals, and Students: $0 trades for everyone in this category
    • Engineers and engineering students, legal accounting, and business professionals and students, healthcare professionals and students, and Newcomers in Canada are eligible
    • More information can be found here

Wealthsimple Trade Promotion

Wealthsimple Trade Promotion
  • The bonus: $25 cash bonus if you sign up here for Wealthsimple Trade
  • Deadline for account sign up: Ongoing promotion
  • Qualifying criteria: Sign up for a Wealthsimple Trade Account and transfer $150 cash and trade $150 within 45 days
  • Coverage of transfer out fees: Yes, for transfers that are greater than $5000 in value and covers rebates up to $50 to $150. Once you transferred your account into Wealthsimple Trade, you fill out this form to get a refund within 1-2 business days into your cash balance
  • Typical trading commission: Commission free. It is $0 and free to buy and sell ETFs and individual stocks. However, Wealthsimple charges a 1.5% foreign currency conversion fee, so it is best to hold US stocks elsewhere.

Wealthsimple Trade is probably known as the Robinhood of Canada because of the zero dollar commissions of individual stocks (and the get rich quick in Canada kind of mentality).

It would probably make it much more tempting to invest reguarly for me, but I do prefer a small amount of commission so that I at least think about how much I am investing before I press the “BUY” button too easily.

However, for people who plan to invest in ETFs and plan to dollar cost average, the savings of $0 commission will likely outweigh $100 cash back over time!

Think about that, saving commission on 10 ETF trades is $100 already for a typical online brokerage in Canada.

Justwealth Cash Bonus

Although Justwealth is not a investing platform but instead it is a Canadian robo advisor, they are also offering a cash bonus.

Justwealth has one of the highest returns of the robo advisors, here’s a look at their performance as a robo advisor compared to some of the big bank mutual funds.

  • The bonus:
    • $50 for assets between $5000 to $24,999
    • $100 for assets between $25,000 and $49,999
    • $225 for assets between $50,000 and 99,999
    • $500 for assets over $100,000
  • Deadline for account sign up: There is no deadline
  • Qualifying criteria: You have to hold this amount at minimum for at least 3 months

Justwealth is unique in that they have a Target Date RESP (called the Target Date Education Fund).

Tangerine Investing Cash Bonus

  • The bonus: Up to $750 Cash
  • Deadline for account sign up: March 1, 2022 <—There doesn’t seem to be anything active right now
  • Open up a RSP, TFSA, RIF, or non-registered Investment Fund Account with Tangerine
  • For every $5000 you invest, you can get a $25 bonus. That means to get $750, you will have to invest $150,000. This is 0.5% return which is not very good but if you’re planning to invest with Tangerine ETFs anyways this is a good promotion.
  • Keep your account open until at least May 2, 2022

Here’s my Tangerine Investment Funds Review.

Check this link out for other Tangerine promotions available.

Online Brokerage New Account Promotions Summary

All of these online brokerage new account promotions are quite enticing (minus the RBC Direct Investing one, hopefully they come up with something better soon) but the one we are probably most interested in right now is the Scotia iTrade promotion (tempting since we have a Scotiabank Preferred account already, here’s my review) or the CIBC Investor’s Edge promotion as they give the most cash back for amount invested- however, online reviews of CIBC Investor’s Edge mention that it has an archaic interface.

Since we are not planning to trade very much in our joint investing account (especially not 25 trades a year) having a trade rebate won’t be very meaningful in our situation.

Hopefully this review of online brokerage new account promotions in Canada will be useful for you in your next search of the best brokerage for you (and a little icing on top in the form of cash back won’t hurt either).

If you’re not interested in just a promotion, National Bank with their $0 commissions for trades and ETFs rivals Questrade (for free ETF purchases and low commissions) and Wealthsimple Trade (for their $0 trades). National Bank is now major competition for Wealthsimple Trade.

If you’re looking to further your dividend investing education, here are some books to check out.

Don’t forget to link your online investment brokerage with Wealthica, one of the best net worth and investment trackers in Canada (and best of all, it’s free). I personally think it’s one of the best personal finance apps in Canada available.

You may also be interested in:

Which online brokerage do you use, and would you jump ship for online brokerage new account promotions?

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17 thoughts on “Online Brokerage New Account Promotions in Canada (2023)”

  1. Great post, GenYMoney. Anyone looking for a broker should look here first. I’m amazed at how competitive this space has gotten. I’m with Questrade, but some of these offers from competing brokerages are pretty tempting!

    • @AnotherLoonie- Yes, they are indeed! I think you live in BC, and if you are planning to have a kid soon, Questrade doesn’t give the BCTESG (that’s about 7+ years away though) just fyi!

  2. Great round up of investment offer deals. I was just commenting on Mark’s weekly roundup at MyOwnAdvisor about the CIBC deal and then saw this linked article of yours featuring it. Great article, I’ll be sure to share on the ChooseFI Canada facebook group.

  3. I am not sure how all these banks can compete with free platforms like Wealthsimple. They can become competitive when they offer the simplicity of WealthSimple. Let’s don’t forget on top of all the fees, they charge the 2.5% foreign exchange fees when transferring between USD-CAD.
    Yes, WealthSimple products are simple but I am sure majority of people only need Personal (Taxable), TFSA, and RRSP accounts.
    You can’t have a RESP Trading account with WealthSimple and they don’t offer Quebec Grants (QESI). So I am moving everything to WealthSimple and trade freely without headache (Buying 1 stock at a time is so much fun, Haha). I hope they stay this way.

    I am also using Questrade which is fantastic for researching and all other account types not offered by Wealthsimple. Funny enough, I do my research using Questrade but initiate the trade on WealthSimple. Haha

    The others, moving $50000 for 6 months to get $200 is a big loss to me unless I want to trade with their platform and pay fees and go through headache.

    What do you personally think?

    • @Mr. Dreamer- I don’t have Wealthsimple Trade (too scared to get into the Robinhood of Canada, my self control is already not the best) but I use Questrade. I think some people are too worried about using a brokerage not associated with a big bank. We opened up a big bank brokerage (Scotia) since we wanted to try a different brokerage with our shared $.

      • I totally understand. Wealthsimple is a 2 sided blade. It can hurt or benefit depending in how it is used. With 0 commission and lower FX fee than others (1.5% in WealthSimple), I think I am happy with my move to WealthSimple.

        Also, I am not sure why people are worried about WealthSimple and prefer big banks. I am FAR from having $500K in each type of account.

        “SIPC insurance covers up to $500,000 in securities for each type of account you hold with Wealthsimple and up to $250,000 in cash. Above and beyond this, Apex has secured excess SIPC insurance that provides an additional $150 million of coverage across all its clients.”

        • @Mr. Dreamer- Heck, a lot of people are scared to use an online high interest savings account bank where they can’t talk to people in person! 🙂 My mom still does not do online banking.

  4. Thanks for updating your website on a regular basis.
    Do you know if HSBC InvestDirect ever has a cashback promo like the other major banks?

  5. I was thinking about the offer from Scotia iTade. They have the offer for existing accounts too. But, I am not sure, if the offer is valid for registered accounts.


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