Accounts and products

Detailed information on discount brokerage accounts and investment products available for investing success

Non-registered accounts

National Bank Direct Brokerage offers non-registered accounts in which you can include any investment, whether traded on an exchange or not.

Investment products held in such accounts are subject to tax regulations each year

  
Cash account

With a cash account, you can quickly start managing your investments. When you purchase securities, you are required to pay them later (at the settlement date of the transaction), except for the first transaction where funds in your account must be sufficient to cover the entire cost of the trade.

If you wish to trade in this account, you must carry a positive balance. You must therefore ensure that this brokerage account contains sufficient funds on the settlement date, as shown in the table below:


Products Settlement
Money market instruments (Treasury bills) Same day
Canadian and US options 1 business day
Bonds issued and guaranteed by the Government of Canada and maturing within 3 years 2 business days
Bonds issued and guaranteed by the Government of Canada and maturing in 3 years or more  3 business days
Strip coupons maturing within 18 months 2 business days
Strip coupons maturing in 18 months or more 3 business days
Other securities Contact us for all the details

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Margin account

A margin account allows you to borrow some of the market value of the securities held in your account to purchase other investments. The maximum loan varies with the investment type and market value of the securities.

You first have to pay a certain amount of money, called the margin deposit, in partial settlement of the transaction. The sum of the margin deposit and the broker's advance equals the total cost of the trade.

Note that the use of borrowed money to finance the purchases of securities involves greater risk than purchases using your own funds. When borrowing money to purchase securities, you are required to repay the loan, including its cumulating interests, in accordance with its terms, even if the value of the securities purchased declines.

Security class Maximum NBDB loan* (financing
(as % of the market value)
Stock - $5 value of more ** 70%
Stock - $2 value or more 50%
Stock – Less than $2 value 0%
Canadian mutual funds, in CAD or USD (including money market) 50%
Canadian or US government bonds 96%
Provincial bonds 95%
Canadian municipal bonds 95%
Canadian corporate bonds 50%
Strip coupons 98%
Canadian premium bonds and Canadian savings bonds 0%
Canadian commercial paper 90% 
Canadian or US Treasury bills 96%

* National Bank Direct Brokerage may require, in certain circumstances, higher margins than those indicated in the table. If the price of the purchased securities drops, the broker’s advance is reduced and you will be required to pay additional margin.
**Securities that may be eligible for reduced margin only. High liquidity and low volatility are some of the criteria used to determine eligibility for reduced margins

Read more about buying on marginOpen a margin account now

Margin account with short selling

The margin account with short selling allows you to sell, through us, securities you do not yet hold in order to buy them back at a lower price and thus realize a capital gain.

Note that the use of borrowed money to finance short selling of securities involves greater risk. When borrowing money to short sell securities, you are required to repay the loan, including its cumulating interests, in accordance with its terms, even if the value of the securities purchased changes. Furthermore, fees may apply to security loans when short selling. These fees vary based on the markets and without prior notice. Contact one of our representatives for more information.

This type of account is intended for experienced investors who have the financial means to maintain the margin required for such trades.

Interest rate on account balances: Visit the Interest Rates section to view the applicable fees on CAD or USD accounts.

Margin deposit

Minimum credit balances required by exchanges and IIROC  
Security class Minimum margin required (as a % of the market value)*

Securities of $5 or more that can be eligible for a reduced margin
130% 
Securities trading at $2 or more 150% 
Securities trading between $0.25 and $1.99 200%
Securities trading under $0.25  100% plus $0.25 per share 
Bonds  100% + (1 - NBDB maximum advance)
   

* In certain circumstances, we may deem it is necessary to require a higher margin. National Bank Direct Brokerage reserves the right to close short positions if borrowing such securities is no longer possible. Exchanges determine the minimum margins required. Fees may apply to security loans when short selling. These fees vary based on the markets and without prior notice. Contact one of our representatives for more information on these fees

Learn more about short sellingOpen a margin account with short selling now

Quebec Stock Savings Plan II (QSSP II)

The Quebec Stock Savings Plan II (QSSP II) entitles Quebec investors to deduct their investments in common shares and investment fund securities issued on the primary market from their taxable income.

Any individual residing in Quebec on December 31 of the tax year can claim a deduction with respect to a stock savings plan. This tax benefit applies only at the provincial level, and deductions are limited to 10% of total income. Furthermore, securities must be held in the plan for two complete calendar years following the purchase year (i.e., through December 31 over three consecutive years). If you sell the shares before the end of those three years, you must substitute them with other qualifying securities in order to maintain the tax deduction.

A list of qualifying securities is published in a weekly bulletin available on L’Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF)  website, under Section 6.11, Annexe 4 (available in French only).

Open a QSSP II account now

Income account

Thanks to the income account, you have the opportunity to transfer the investment interest and dividends generated from your non-registered account to a bank account that you hold with the National Bank of Canada or any other Canadian financial institution.

The income payment is made on the day that matches the account opening day. For instance, if the account was opened on a Thursday, the transfer will be carried out on the Thursday following the deposit of the dividend or interest in your investment account. However note that US currency transfers only occur once per week.

The payment must be a minimum of C$10 (or US in the case of a USD account) for the transfer to take place.

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COD account

With a COD account, payment transactions are settled by another financial institution or broker holding the securities in custody.

When a purchase is made, the other institution or broker sends the payment and receives the certificate(s) for the securities. When a sale is made, the other institution or broker sends us the certificate(s), and we forward the payment on delivery.

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