Find the answers to questions regarding our: Account Opening, Banking, Trading, Fees, General Questions !

Virtual Brokers is ranked the best online broker in Canada by The Globe & Mail. For more details on our rankings, come check out our comparison table here.

Account Opening/Account Transfer

The minimum deposit required for opening an account at Virtual Brokers is $1000 CAD for clients in Canada and $25,000 CAD for clients outside Canada (we do not open accounts for U.S. residents). Client wishing to open a Commission-Free Trading account must fund it with a minimum of $5,000 CAD.

After we receive your account applications with supporting documentation, we will typically open your account in 5-7 business days at which time a welcome e-mail will be sent pertaining to your account information and login details.

You can choose from Individual, Joint, Corporate and Institutional – all in both CAD and USD for:

  • Non registered accounts: All-in-One (Equity/Option/Margin/Short) and Commission-Free All-in-One (Equity/Option/Margin/Short) Trading account.
  • Registered accounts (RRSP, TFSA, RRIF, LIRA, LIF, RESP (CAD only, except for RRSP)

Yes, we provide transfer-in services for both registered and non-registered accounts. Simply complete and send us the original transfer forms and we will proceed with your transfer request. Note that we do not charge a fee for transfer-in but it is likely that your transferring institution will.

Once you have funded your account, we can add the quote feeds requested via e-mail. Once the quote feeds are set, you are ready to trade.

Internal transfers (for example; when contributing to your RRSPS's) can be done through the Dashboard via the Support Centre.
Just submit a new ticket with the details of your transfer and your request will be begin processing.

(screenshots are for example purposes only)

Banking

To make a deposit in Canadian dollars, simply log on to your financial institution’s website and perform a transfer by using the “bill payment” option. Set up a new biller/payee under BBS Securities Inc.-Virtual Brokers with your 10-digit Virtual Brokers account number. Alternatively, funds can be deposited into your account by wire*.

Deposits in US dollars can only be made using the wire* method.

*(For details on wiring funds from Canadian, U.S., and international institutions, log in to your Virtual Brokers account, click the Banking Tab and all information can be found in the WIRE IN section.)

Please note we do not accept cash, cheques, money orders or bank drafts for account funding purposes.

Electronic Funds Transfers (EFT) is are free and are only processed in Canadian dollars. You can transfer up to $25,000 per day from your settled funds in Virtual Brokers to your bank account on file.


Trading

We provide trading of stocks, options, mutual funds, ETFs and bonds on all major North American markets.

Maximum Loan Value based on Market Value
Long Position Equities / 1x ETF 2x ETF 3x ETF
If price < $1.50 0% 0% 0%
If $1.50 ≤ price < $1.75 20% 7.14% 0%
If $1.75 ≤ price < $2.00 40% 14.29% 0%
If price ≥ $2.00 (Reduced Margin) 70% 35% 10%
If price ≥ $2.00 (Not Reduced Margin) 50% 25% 0%
Minimum Credit Requirements based on Market Value
Short Position Equities / 1x ETF 2x ETF 3x ETF
If price < $1.50 2x Market Value but to a minimum of $1.50 per share $6 per share $9 per share
If $1.50 ≤ price < $2.00 $3 per share $12 per share $18 per share
If price ≥ $2.00 (Reduced Margin) 130% 165% 190%
If price ≥ $2.00 (Not Reduced Margin) 150% 175% 200%

Note: Reduced Margin eligibility for Canadian securities is determined by Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) on a quarterly basis. Most major US stocks with listed options are eligible for reduced margin. BBS Securities Inc. reserves the right to impose more stringent margin requirements at any time without prior notice. These changes often take effect immediately and may result in the issuance of a margin call.

Virtual Brokers (“VB”) is a division of BBS Securities Inc. make reasonable efforts to ensure that clients achieve the best execution of their orders to buy or sell Canadian listed securities that are quoted or traded on Canadian marketplaces. “Best execution” is our obligation to seek the most advantageous execution terms reasonably available under the circumstances when executing a transaction on behalf of a client, including consideration of factors such as price, speed of execution, certainty of execution and overall cost of the transaction.

The Canadian equity market is composed of multiple marketplaces, including traditional exchanges and Alternative Trading Systems (ATSs). The same security may be traded on multiple marketplaces.

As a result of Canada’s evolving multiple marketplaces, Virtual Brokers (“VB”) is a division of BBS Securities Inc. wishes to advise their clients on how orders will be handled. Our trading system is connected to a Smart Order Router, which will ensure that our clients receive the best price for their equity transactions.

BBS is a participant of the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX), the TSX Venture Exchange (TSX-V), TSX-Alpha Exchange, Aequitas Neo Exchange, Nasdaq CXC & CX2, The Canadian Securities Exchange (CSE), and Omega.

The parent company of BBS Securities Inc. is a shareholder of Aequitas Innovations Inc., the parent company of Aequitas Neo Exchange, has representation on the Aequitas Board of Directors. As a Canadian registered investment dealer bound by both internal and external requirements respecting the handling of client orders in a manner that provides each client with the most advantageous execution terms available, BBS Securities Inc. will consider as part of its order routing protocol, execution opportunities on the Aequitas Neo Exchange.

Hours of operation for trading in publicly listed securities are between 9:30 am and 4:00 pm (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday, excluding statutory holidays. Our trading staff is available for order execution between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Eastern Standard Time ("EST"), Monday through Friday, not including statutory holidays. Pre-market and after-hours trading facilities are available in limited situations. Please contact our trade desk to place your order.

Day Orders
A "day order" is an order to trade that expires if it is not executed the day that it is booked to the marketplace. Any unfilled portion of a day order will expire at the close of business of the marketplace where the order was last booked.


Good Through Orders
A "good through order" can be defined as Good Till Cancel or Good Till Date. The former ensures that the order remains open for a maximum of 90 calendar days. The latter requires that the client specify a date for their order to expire. All good through orders will remain booked until executed, cancelled, or upon expiry, whichever comes first.

Market Orders
A "market order" is an order to buy or sell a security at whatever price is available in the marketplace. Market orders provide no control over the execution price. In cases of extreme market volatility or liquidity imbalance, a market order may execute at a price which is significantly different than the expected execution price. Investors can use marketable limit orders (as described below) in place of market orders to eliminate the risk of the order executing at a price outside of an investor's acceptable range.

Limit Orders
A "limit order" is an order for a security at a specific minimum sale price or maximum purchase price that is not to be exceeded. A limit order provides control over the execution price but reduces the certainty of execution. In a fast moving market, a limit order may miss the opportunity to buy or to sell a stock. Marketable limit orders (i.e., buy limit orders priced higher than the prevailing offer price or sell limit orders priced lower than the prevailing bid price) will trade much like market orders, increasing the certainty of execution without the risk of the order trading at a price outside of an investor's acceptable range. 

Stop Loss Orders
A "stop loss order" is an order that becomes a market order or a limit order when a board lot trades at or through the stop price on the marketplace in which the stop loss order has been booked. Stop loss market orders are filled at the best available market price once the "on stop" is activated. If the order is filled when the relevant stock or overall market is experiencing rapid price declines, an investor may receive a price that is much lower than expected. Investors can place stop loss limit orders as an alternative. Stop loss limit orders allow investors to define the lowest price an investor is prepared to sell at once the "on stop" is activated, in effect creating a price range for the investor's sell order.
  
Fill or Kill Orders
A "fill or kill order" is an order that will fill immediately and completely, or not fill at all. If the order is not filled in its entirety, the order is cancelled (killed).

Immediate or Cancel Orders
An "immediate or cancel order" is an order where all or part of the order will fill immediately. Any portion of the order that is not filled immediately is cancelled.

Special Terms Orders
A "special terms order" is an order with specific terms that are not executable in the regular marketplace.

Special terms orders are booked to the Special Terms Market of the primary listing marketplace, unless they are immediately executable on an alternative marketplace at the time of entry.

Marketplace Fees and Rebates
We may pay marketplace fees or receive marketplace rebates when routing certain orders to certain marketplaces. Marketplace fee schedules are disclosed on the websites of each marketplace. Client trades with the Commission-Free Trading account may be subject to ECN/Exchange, Clearing and Special Handling Fees.


Fees

If you decide to open a margin account, you can choose between the “Commission-Free” and “ Classic Pricing”. Click on the links to each of these commission structures for more details. For all types of registered accounts, such as RRSP, TFSA, RESP, RRIF, LIRA and LIF the “Classic Pricing” commission structure would apply.  Please note, opening a Commission-Free Trading Account requires having a trading platform application and market data subscription.

ECN stands for Electronic Communications Networks and is a fee associated with the exchange in which the order was routed to. This fee is charged when you remove liquidity from the market, which happens when you enter a market or marketable limit order. For U.S. stocks, ECN fees can be avoided during the core trading session (9:30 AM ET to 4:00 PM ET) when you use “MNGD” as the order route.

Most of our clients start with our free real-time snap quotes. Should you require streaming real-time quotes or market depth (Level II), a data subscription for each exchange is required.

In order to short a stock, that stock has to be borrowed. The associated fee is called a borrow fee.

Interest is calculated daily and credited/debited to your account on a monthly basis. No interest charges will be applied if you borrow intra-day (positions flatten by end of the day).

For foreign exchange transactions, Virtual Brokers acts as principal with you, and may earn revenue on the spread (75 - 199 basis points). These rates would also apply to forced currency conversions (happens when you trade a U.S. stock in a CDN registered account). Please note that to avoid a forced currency conversion, Virtual Brokers offers USD denominated registered accounts at $15 per quarter.


General Questions

Yes. Virtual Brokers, a division of BBS Securities Inc. is a member of the Canadian Investor Protection Fund (CIPF). More details can be found here www.cipf.ca.

Office Hours:
Monday – Friday 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM ET

Customer Service Hours:
Monday – Friday 8:00am - 5 :00pm ET

View our Holiday Schedule here

Yes, you can request a demo account by clicking here. You will have 14 days to test drive our trading platform risk-free with $100,000 of practice money.

Instead of DRIPs, Virtual Brokers offers the Dividend Purchase Plan (DPP), where shares are bought automatically on the market using the dividend proceeds (as opposed to obtaining shares through the transfer agent). The cost is $1.00 per month for each account with stocks enrolled for DPP.