Best Online Brokerages in Singapore 2020

With so many brokerage firms to choose from, finding the best online broker can be a daunting process. To help you narrow your search, our investing team has prepared a comparison of the top trading platforms in Singapore based on a range of factors, like commission fees, international market access and exchange rates.

Best Online Broker in Singapore: Saxo Markets

Consider this if you want a trading platform with great market access and minimal fees


Market
ClassicPlatinumVIPIndustry Average
Singapore0.08%0.08%0.08%0.22%
US0.06%0.05%0.04%0.27%
Japan0.15%0.12%0.10%0.32%
HK0.15%0.12%0.10%0.21%
EU0.10%0.07-0.09%0.05-0.08%0.31%
* Saxo min. SG: S$10; US:$3-$4; JPY1,000-1,500; HKD60-90; EUR6-12

Instrument
Saxo ClassicSaxo VIPIndustry Average
US 301.41.42.1
Japan 225778.3
HK 50556.5

Currency
ClassicVIPIndustry Average
EUR USD0.60.40.7
USD JPY0.60.40.7
GBP USD0.70.40.9
AUD USD0.50.30.7
EUR JPY0.70.41.2
* figures based on min. advertised spreads

Saxo Markets is the best online brokerage in Singapore because it combines low cost, great market access and easy user interface into one platform. First, Saxo charges just 0.08% commission on trades, with a minimum cost of S$10 for Singapore stocks ($4 for US stocks), roughly half the cost of what most of its competitors charge. Not only that, Saxo doesn't charge a monthly minimum commission like Interactive Brokers. Because of these two features, Saxo can be effective not just for long term investors, but also for frequent traders who invest S$100,000 or less.

On top of it's low fees, Saxo offers online trading in 36 global markets, and market leading commission rates for the major international markets such as the U.S., Hong Kong and Japan. Through its Saxo Rewards programme the broker also charges even lower commissions for investors with funding of at least S$300,000 (S$300,000 platinum, S$1,500,000 VIP ). Additionally, Saxo is one of the best platforms for trading foreign currencies, since its FX spreads are consistently among the lowest available, beating competitors by a significant margin. Finally, our analysts found Saxo Markets's trading platform to have the most intuitive user interface.

Read our full review

Best Platforms for CFD Trading

Contracts for difference (CFDs) allow individuals to speculate on the future price of an underlying asset, without actually owning the asset. CFDs are also traded on leverage, giving traders additional buying power. For these reasons, they are popular among experienced traders in Singapore. Below we highlight two platforms that stand out for CFD trading.

Best Online Brokerage for Trading CFDs: City Index

Consider this if you are an experienced trader of CFDs

City IndexSaxo Markets (Classic Pricing)IG
CFD Commission for Stocks & ETFs:
Singapore0.08%0.08%0.10%
U.S.$0.015/share0.06%$0.020/share
UK0.10%0.10%0.10%
Euro0.10%0.10%0.10%
Japan0.05%0.15%0.20%
Index CFD Spread:
US SP 5000.40.40.4
US Tech 100111
Singapore0.40.30.2
Hong Kong 501055
Japan 225878
China A50101210
Australia 200111
Germany 30111

City Index is a great option for expert traders who seek a trading platform for buying and selling CFDs exclusively. CFDs are basically instruments for margin trading, meaning you are borrowing to invest more money than you have on hand. As such, it can dramatically increase both your gains and losses. Because of this nature, CFD trading is generally most advisable for seasoned experts.

When it comes to trading CFDs, City Index stands out as one of the lowest cost options. While Saxo Markets' platform is still the cheapest for some options, City Index's CFD offering provides a more diverse CFD market access and its commission fees and CFD spreads are both competitive with Saxo's. City Index also offers a robust and competitive trading platform for forex trading. However, Saxo is still a better fit for investors who seek access to a diverse set of asset classes (e.g. equities, ETFs, bonds, etc.) with market leading commission.

Read our full review

Honorable Mention for Trading CFDs: IG

Consider this if you are interested in trading CFDs on a platform with excellent educational materials

IG is another leading brokerage with CFD offerings. While it's commission fees are generally higher than those of City Index, it offers a few features that make it worth considering. First, IG allows investors to adjust their exposure by trading fractions of a contract (e.g. 0.5 contracts of spot FX EUR/USD). Furthermore, IG offers Knockout CFDs, which are a unique product that allows traders to determine their maximum losses before entering a position. This product automatically adjusts margin requirements based on the user's specific "knockout level", or maximum loss.

IG also offers a comprehensive CFD education platform through IG Academy, which helps new traders get up to speed and even practice risk-free with an account with simulated funds. Finally, IG's collaboration with Singapore Airlines allows users to earn KrisFlyer Miles on every trade. For more information, please refer to the toggles below.

Read Our Full Review

IGCity IndexSaxo Markets (Classic Pricing)
CFD Commission for Stocks & ETFs:
Singapore0.10%0.08%0.08%
U.S.$0.020/share$0.015/share0.06%
UK0.10%0.10%0.10%
Euro0.10%0.10%0.10%
Japan0.20%0.05%0.15%
Index CFD Spread:
US SP 5000.40.40.4
US Tech 100111
Singapore0.20.40.3
Hong Kong 505105
Japan 225887
China A50101012
Australia 200111
Germany 30111
Monthly Aggregated Contract Value (USD)Monthly Bonus KrisFlyer Miles PayableTotal KrisFlyer miles after 1 year for each tier
$5,000,000+5006,000
$10,000,000+1,10013,200
$15,000,000+1,80021,600
$20,000,000+2,50030,000
$25,000,000+3,75045,000

Best Online Trading Platform for International Markets: Interactive Brokers

Consider this if you plan to invest in international

In terms of trading securities in non-Singapore markets, Interactive Brokers's commission levels are hard to beat. This is attractive to investors that may feel limited by the number of stocks on the Straits Times Index and feel inclined to consider other options. As you can see in the table below, Interactive Brokers has the lowest commission costs for any region outside of Singapore. Still, Saxo is the best option for those who want access to every market including Singapore.

Read our full review

Lastly, Interactive Brokers charges a monthly minimum fee of S$10 for accounts between S$2,000 and S$100,000. Though this cost can be offset with trading commissions, it can still be a meaningful cost if you are trading only a few thousand dollars in total.

Interactive BrokersSaxo Markets
U.S. Stocks Commission Fee (Min. Fee)$0.0035 ($0.35)0.04% - 0.06% ($4)
Hong Kong Stocks Commission Fee (Min. Fee)0.08% (HKD 12)0.15% (HKD 90)
Japan Stocks Commission Fee (Min. Fee)0.050% (JPY 80)0.15% (JPY 1500)

Trading Platform with Flat Commission for US Stocks & ETFs: TD Ameritrade (thinkorswim)

TD Ameritrade
TD Ameritrade

Consider this if you only want to trade US stocks and ETFs

For wealthy investors who only plan to trade US stocks & ETFs, TD Ameritrade might be a good alternative to Saxo. Although it charges a higher minimum commission, (USD $10.65) commission on your trades compared to Saxo's 0.06% on US stocks (USD $4 minimum). TD Ameritrade's is actually a flat fee regardless of the market or size of your trade. Therefore, if you are in large amounts (greater than about S$25,000) at a time, your fee can easily be lower with TD Ameritrade. However, if you are looking to invest in a variety of securities like futures, options, bonds and FX, we think Saxo is still a better option for you especially if you plan to trade frequently.

TD AmeritradeSaxo
Stock Trading CommissionUSD 10.65 per trade0.06% for US (USD 4 min.)
For Trade of S$5,000S$14.46S$5.43
For Trade of S$30,000S$14.46S$18

How to Choose an Online Brokerage Platform

When it comes to choosing an online brokerage to invest with, there are a few key important considerations to make. First, it is crucial to make sure that the brokerage allows you to access the types of investments that interest you. For example, some investors may seek to pursue CFD investing. Other investors may be interested in access to investments in a wide variety of international markets. Perhaps most importantly, it is important to compare the cost of using each investing platform. We strongly recommend that you compare the commission fees and spreads of the top brokers in order to find an affordable platform that doesn't significantly cut into your total earnings.

Summary Table of Online Brokerage Commissions

Below is a summary table of all the trading platforms in Singapore. Please read our review of the best online brokers above for a more detailed analysis and to see which one best suits your needs.

NameMin Fee<S$50kS$50k-S$100k>$100kUSJapanHK# Intl. Markets
Saxo MarketsS$100.08%0.08%0.08%0.06%, min S$40.15%, min JPY1,5000.15%, min HKD9036
City Index (CFD only)S$100.08%$0.15/share0.05%0.15%26+
IG (CFD only)S$150.10%$0.2/share0.20%0.25%30+
Interactive BrokersS$2.50.08%0.08%0.08%$0.0035/share min $0.350.05%, min JPY800.08%, min HKD1224
TD Ameritrade (thinkorswim)S$14-S$15(USD10.65) for US stocks, USD10.65 + $0.81 per contract for options
Standard CharteredN/A0.20%0.20%0.20%0.25%, min $100.25%, min JPY1,0000.25%, min HKD10010
U TradeS$250.275%0.25%0.20%0.3%, min $20N/A0.25%, min HKD1004
POEMSS$250.28%0.22%0.18%$20 (flat)0.18%, min JPY1,5000.18%, min HKD10021
iOCBCS$250.275%0.22%0.18%0.3%, min $200.75%, min JPY3,0000.25%, min HKD15026
KGIFraserS$250.275%0.220%0.180%0.3%, min $200.5%, min JPY1,5000.25%, min HKD10015
i*TradeS$250.275%0.22%0.18%0.3%, min $20N/A0.25%, min HKD506
Citibank BrokerageS$280.25%0.20%0.18%0.3%, min $200.05% JPY 800.3%, min HKD1203
DBS VickersS$250.28%0.22%0.18%0.3%, min $250.35%, min JPY3,0000.18%, min HKD1007
RHB SecuritiesS$250.275%0.22%0.18%0.3%, min $20N/A0.25%, min HKD1004
Maybank Kim EngS$250.275%0.22%0.18%0.3%, min $200.5%, min JPY3,0000.25%, min HKD1009
Lim & Tan SecuritiesS$250.28%0.22%0.18%N/A0.8% min S$700.18% HKD10012
AverageS$200.22%0.20%0.17%
NameMin Fee<S$50kS$50k-S$100k>$100kUSJapanHK# Intl. Markets
Saxo MarketsS$100.08%0.08%0.08%0.06%, min S$40.15%, min JPY1,5000.15%, min HKD9036
City Index (CFD only)S$100.08%$0.15/share0.05%0.15%26+
IG (CFD only)S$150.10%$0.2/share0.20%0.25%30+
Interactive BrokersS$2.50.08%0.08%0.08%$0.0035/share min $0.350.05%, min JPY800.08%, min HKD1224
TD Ameritrade (thinkorswim)S$14-S$15(USD10.65) for US stocks, USD10.65 + $0.81 per contract for options
Standard CharteredN/A0.20%0.20%0.20%0.25%, min $100.25%, min JPY1,0000.25%, min HKD10010
U TradeS$250.275%0.25%0.20%0.3%, min $20N/A0.25%, min HKD1004
POEMSS$250.28%0.22%0.18%$20 (flat)0.18%, min JPY1,5000.18%, min HKD10021
iOCBCS$250.275%0.22%0.18%0.3%, min $200.75%, min JPY3,0000.25%, min HKD15026
KGIFraserS$250.275%0.220%0.180%0.3%, min $200.5%, min JPY1,5000.25%, min HKD10015
i*TradeS$250.275%0.22%0.18%0.3%, min $20N/A0.25%, min HKD506
Citibank BrokerageS$280.25%0.20%0.18%0.3%, min $200.05% JPY 800.3%, min HKD1203
DBS VickersS$250.28%0.22%0.18%0.3%, min $250.35%, min JPY3,0000.18%, min HKD1007
RHB SecuritiesS$250.275%0.22%0.18%0.3%, min $20N/A0.25%, min HKD1004
Maybank Kim EngS$250.275%0.22%0.18%0.3%, min $200.5%, min JPY3,0000.25%, min HKD1009
Lim & Tan SecuritiesS$250.28%0.22%0.18%N/A0.8% min S$700.18% HKD10012
AverageS$200.22%0.20%0.17%

Other Things to Consider When Choosing an Online Investing Platform

There are many other factors to consider. For one, it might be useful to actually check out the user interface of each broker’s offering to see if you can understand and operate them easily. Some of the brokers like Saxo and POEMS have quite user-friendly platforms, while others have websites that look quite outdated. Furthermore, for sophisticated traders who care about live-data API connection and margin financing, it might be crucial to understand the different product offerings in the market to make sure that they get the best deal on everything they care about. Not every broker will provide this information upfront; but usually, companies that have the best rates tend to make the most disclosure.

Additionally, some brokerages have teams of analysts that provide research reports for companies and markets, which could be valuable to some investors depending on their investment style and aptitude. Finally, if are interested in investing directly in local startups or SMEs or would prefer to allow the experts to build your portfolio, it is worth considering crowdfunding platforms or robo advisors.

William Hofmann

William is a Product Manager at ValueChampion Singapore, focusing on banking and SMEs. He previously was an Economic Consultant at Industrial Economics Inc.

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