Interactive Brokers - all eggs in one basket?

I honestly hope IB and other non CH brokers (like Schwab) will continue to offer us those products…

The topic has been broadly discussed here. If you have further infos your contributions will be surely appreciated as this “risk” concerns many forum members.

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What you say is true… for US law. For everyone else, you’re wrong and you need to spend some time learning about how international law works. If what you claim were true, all brokers would have to charge Swiss stamp duty

I don’t have the link anymore, but someone I know showed me a page where FINMA explained that FinSA only applies to persons and brokerages located in Switzerland.

There was some guy on the MMM forum, look for recent EU related threads.

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CT didn’t but in a private email an employee wrote me they are going to apply it this year. When I asked how much would it be, no more answer, very unprofessional, so CT is not an option for me anymore.

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This link may be useful: Swiss Custody Fees Compared (they also don’t know CT is going to apply a fee this year)

It’s possible to compare the fees with different scenarios under this link
Obviously, it would depend how much money you have under custody.

But in top, you have most of the time:

  • Cornertrade - no custody fees
  • Postfinance - flat 90 CHF/year
  • Tradedirect - Custody fees: 0.025%, min. CHF 10, max. CHF 25 per quarter.
  • Strateo - 0.02% + VAT (min. CHF 15, max. CHF 35) quarterly.
  • Swissquote - 0.025% (min. CHF 15, max. CHF 50) quarterly (+ VAT).

Some banks are refunding the stock transfer fees from one broker to another one.
For exemple: tradedirect up to 500.-

After, it’s a question of features and personnal feeling:

  • Cornertrade seems to have issue with 2FA (based on the feedbacks from this forum)
  • Tradedirect doesn’t inspire trust with their website homepage (even if BCV is behind)
  • Postfinance has changed multiple time their fees in the last 4 years

I am using 2fa with corner trader. Recently I changed my phone, so I had to change the credential. I could not do it myself, the option to change it yourself is gone. So I had to call them, then they resetted the 2fa and I could provide the new credential. So this loophole is kind of mended. But of course anyone could call and pretend to be me, so its still not perfect.

My biggest problem with CT is their lack of professionalism. You can see that they are very small. You have issue with 2fa? Bad luck, the guy responsible for this is not in the office today, try tomorrow (seriously, true story bro). It seems to me like the majority of their RMs are Russian, which is strange for a Swiss company.


Personally, I’m quite happy with Swissquote, except the 2.- for outgoing transfer even in CHF.

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They’d have to call from your number. They verify this.

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You can easily do number spoofing. That’s why tax administration, normal bank and insurance ask you security question and/or personnal details.

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Anyone got more details as to how much custody or account fee CornerTrader are going to introduce this year? Would be good to know what amount they will have and whether it’s

  • a minimum/prepaid fee like PostFinance or Interactive Brokers
  • or a percentage model like Swissquote, Strateo, Tradedirect
    • (actually Stateo have also an ‘account maintenance fee’ of 50 CHF/year if not enough trades executed)

I reread my email exchanges with Mr. Patrick Fuchs (Cornertrader Relationship manager in Lugano) and:

  • bonds custody fees: 0.25%
  • stocks custody fees: none
  • inactive account fees: not specified what ‘inactive’ means and how much they will be

And to be fair I found out he did answer my mail (but it was by mistake redirected into ‘Spam’). So I’m back considering CT a possible ‘basket’.

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PS: regarding IB alternative: etrade seem to offer the relevant vanguard etfs even commission free (see here) - ok they gotta have shitty money transfer fees (sth like 25$?), but no account/custody fee. what’s the catch? (the estate tax!)
Edit: maybe the catch is that they only accept US residents…:thinking:

one more thought re IB alternative: degiro. I assume some of you are already using it. I at first considered it a total no-go, so sad, as for the custody model (which is the only one that makes sense for me) they were charging 1 EUR + 3% for dividends. That essentially means round about 0.1% additional cost. That’s outragous! :sweat_smile:
Now, what if you just stick to accumulating ETFs on degiro (custody model). Wouldnt that actually be a mustachian solution?
Another one re degiro: does anyone know if you pay Swiss Stamp Duty with them? They’re dutch but for swiss you open an account with and have to transfer CHF if I got that right…

Yes that will bypass the dividend fee. I believe you will not be paying stamp tax as the broker is Dutch, not Swiss.

Yes, only US citizen, but you can ask

I cant seem to quote posts, but with regards to Degiro:
My only issue with this is that in the UK, dividends from accumulation ETFs are still taxed, but the broker often doesn’t supply the amount of dividend as it is reinvested. Therefore in a trading account, I only use distribution ETFs

However, with S&P500 ETF or tech shares, there are very little dividends, so the costs here would be minimal, at least probably worth the trading cost saving

Can anyone tell me the IB trading costs for USA shares - there seems to be costs listed under North America but also under UK a charge for USD-denominated stocks? The fees listed here seem to be using the North America costs which are less

Also, is there anyway around the inactivity fee? I dont myself and my spouse would both be over the 100,000 USD limits individually, but maybe as a joint account or collectively under their Family Office Account Structure

I think depending how you are married it doesn’t matter whose account it is as all the fortune belongs to both of you equally

I’ve paid 0.3 USD for practically each of my buy/sell orders on NYSE.

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Hello, I’m trying to decide whether to use Post Finance or Interactive Brokers for my partner. She will invest around CHF 20k initially and then likely 1k per month in VT and / or a Swiss ETF.

She has a PF bank account already so would be easy to use that, and from what I can tell for a ‘buy and hold’ strategy PF is ok for costs.

One question i have is what would happen to the PF account if we leave Switzerland? Would she need to transfer the ETFs to another broker?

I assume that on IB there would be no issues when leaving Switzerland.


It’s clear that if you want to save costs down to a penny, IB is the cheapest option, long term. Yes, you start with 20k, but I’m sure that’s not the goal, the goal is to grow.

However, if you are ready to give up on something like 100 CHF per year (I don’t have the numbers in my head, and of course it depends on the total), it would buy you a lot of simplicity to have a bank account & broker directly by PostFinance.

If you do opt for it, however, I would recommend that you buy products in CHF. If you buy VT (which is in USD), PF will apply an exchange rate that is far from ideal. If you want the minimalist solution with the fewest steps possible, go for PF and buy VWRL.CH. You will not be able to reclaim the dividend withholding tax, but it gives you an easy start and is probably a bit more reassuring.

Down the road, once you’ve got the grasp of it and once your portfolio has grown, you can run the numbers and consider switching to IB.

You can transfer a position to another broker.

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