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Is Tradestation Offered In Canada? (2021)

 

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Is TradeStation Offered In Canada?

No, TradeStation is unfortunately not available in Canada.

A strong alternative for Canadians would be Interactive Brokers.

 

 

Is TradeStation coming to Canada?

At this time there is no official announcement that TradeStation will return to Canada.

Tradestation was actually available and liked by many Canadians, however they exited the Canadian market around 2010.

 

What’s so good about TradeStation?

TradeStation initially made its name with advanced traders by offering a programming language within the platform allowing you to create programs to back-test data and automate trades.

These days, those capabilities all still exist and they offer commission free trading like most other platforms.


 

Alternatives to TradeStation for Canadians

Since TradeStation was focused on advanced traders, it’s important to look for platforms with similar features.

For those who are looking for similar low-cost trading platforms, Interactive Brokers and Questrade are two good options to consider.

 

1. Interactive Brokers

An American firm with operations around the world, Interactive Brokers was one of the earliest adopters of computer-assisted trading in the world.

The company serves over 600,000 clients around the world with account totals of $128.4 billion.

 

Highlights

  • Large number of tradable security types (stocks, bonds, options, futures, warrants, currency etc.)
  • Low commissions and account fees, especially for high volume and high account balance individuals, fixed and tiered pricing options
  • International presence gives clients access to worldwide markets

 

Drawbacks

  • Both mobile and web platforms (while feature-packed) were hard to navigate at first
  • While the commissions are low, it may take a while to understand how much you will be paying on certain types of trades / the optimal structure for your trading volume

 

2. Questrade

Founded in 1999, Questrade has been serving Canadian customers for over two decades.

The company has $20 billion of assets under their management and continue to grow rapidly, with over 200,000 new accounts opened yearly.

The Canadian based company is the country’s fastest growing online brokerage and offers both robo-investing and self-investing options.

 

Highlights

  • Low commissions
  • Good customer service (Live Chat options available)
  • Well designed user interface

 

Drawbacks

  • Limited amount of research tools available
  • $1,000 account minimum to begin investing

 

3. thinkorswim

The thinkorswim platform which is powered by TD Ameritrade has been a top choice for professional traders. Canadians can still get it, with a minimum deposit of $25,000 USD.

Spring 2021: thinkorswim has been discontinued for new users.

We’ve compiled a comprehensive list of brokerages available to Canadians along with their fees in our how to buy stocks article.

 

TradeStation Canadian History

Around 2010, changes were made in legislation in Canada as to what constitutes a brokerage and TradeStation was not willing to change its operation structure to meet the legislation and pulled out of Canada.

Unless TradeStation makes changes to the way that its brokerage is run, to be more in line with Canadian law, the company’s brokerage accounts will be beyond reach for Canadian residences.

The depth of analysis that TradeStation offered to the Canadian market ten years ago has been sorely missed.

And there has been a lot of grumbling on Twitter over the past few weeks about the GameStop buyout of short sold stocks and the difficulties faced by some brokerages.

U.S. traders are enjoying the great analysis though.

 

TradeStation Overview

Tradestation is a great choice of brokerage platform that offers a large range of tradable assets including stocks, bonds, mutual funds, ETFs, options, futures, and even cryptocurrencies.

Launched in 1991, the platform has become known over the years for its professional trading platform and extensive offerings of technical analysis tools.

At one point, the platform was catered specifically towards professional money managers and others who had serious experience.

The platform offers two account tiers, TS GO and TS Select.

Both options provide traders with commission free trading on select securities, with the higher tier TS Select version requiring a $2,000 minimum deposit.

TS Select account holders have access to a suite of research and analytical tools as well as a powerful desktop platform for executing high frequency trades.

In an attempt to broaden appeal to less experienced traders, the platform has been focusing on making their services more accessible.

Aside from the introduction of the more simplified TS GO accounts, the platform offers features such as paper trading, which allow novice traders to practice before putting real money into their accounts.

In addition, the inclusion of more popular and well-known assets such as cryptocurrency has allowed the platform to appeal to a broader audience.

Starting at just 0.5% per trade, the TradeStation Crypto platform includes popular coins such as BCH, BTC, ETH, LTC, and USDC.

 

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Shawn Gant

Shawn is a passionate techie particularly interested in the fintech space. He loves to dig into the ever evolving number of apps and SaaS platforms available to Canadians. In his free time, catch him on the mountains shredding some powder.