CommSec review: CommSec Share Trading Account

CommSec Share Trading Account
CommSec Share Trading Account

Start buying and selling Australian and international shares with CommSec’s popular share trading account.

CommSec is the fully owned, online trading arm of Commonwealth Bank. With over 20 years of share trading experience, it's one of the most widely used platforms in Australia.

With a CommSec Share Trading Account, customers can buy shares online quickly and affordably via its easy to use desktop or mobile app. Our CommSec review shows clients have access to real-time quotes, news and state-of-the-art charting to help them get the competitive advantage to succeed in the share market.

Product name CommSec Share Trading Account
Type of broker Online only
ASX products Shares
Company issued options
Instalment warrants
Endowment warrants
Available markets ASX
Standard brokerage fee for ASX shares From $10
Support Phone

Quick verdict

Good for
  • Trusted brand
  • No inactivity fee
  • News and research
  • Data and monitoring tools
Not so great for
  • WebIRESS charting isn't free
  • No live chat support

Company background

CommSec is one of the most trusted names in the Australian share trading industry. After launching in 1995 with its simple Australian share trading platform, CommSec has now expanded into the fully featured trading institution that we see today. On top of Australian shares, clients can also invest in international shares, exchange traded funds (ETFs) and contracts for difference (CFDs), as well as fully administer their own self managed super fund (SMSF).

While you don't need to be a current banking customer of Commonwealth Bank to open a CommSec Share Trading Account, it does integrate single logins if you are. This allows current clients to easily view all of their accounts together and gives them the ability to flick between their NetBank and CommSec accounts without logging out. If you've experienced the confusing mess that flicking between multiple accounts and logins can serve up, you'll know how handy this type of full online banking integration can be.

What are the key features of a CommSec Share Trading Account?

A CommSec Share Trading Account offers features that are appealing to both novice and advanced investors. One of the biggest draw cards are its free high-quality data feeds and research sections on all listed securities.

While brokerage fees aren't the lowest if you're looking to trade amounts of more than $1,000, there is no minimum trade requirement on your standard Australian shares account, meaning you won't be charged an inactivity fee or any other monthly fee.

The added security that a trusted name like CommSec provides, when combined with the ability to pay for trades through a Commonwealth Direct Investment Account (CDIA), further adds to its value.

Single Commonwealth Bank login

Current clients of Commonwealth Bank can use a single login to seamlessly switch between both CommSec and NetBank, keeping all of your finances easily accessible in the one place. If you choose to go down this path, a CDIA can be set up. A CDIA can act as a low brokerage fee settlement account while also being used as an everyday transaction account, viewable right next to your current bank balances within NetBank. It also gives you the option of a debit Mastercard attached to the account.

Real-time prices, news and research

All CommSec Share Trading Accounts provide clients with up-to-date market prices and data. With a CommSec Share Trading Account, you're able to stay up to date with the latest news and releases as they happen. Whether it's news from a specific company or a market-wide, macro release, you can access reports, videos and analysis from CommSec analysts directly within the platform.

Trade international shares and ETFs

CommSec allows you to invest in overseas markets by opening an international share trading account. Within the one CommSec International Securities Trading Account, clients have the ability to buy shares in US companies such as Apple or Google.

Customers can also invest in global ETFs that are listed on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) through the regular Australian share trading account.

Browser and app account access

CommSec Share Trading Account holders can log in and place trades through a number of portals. Trades can be placed online via a web browser, through the CommSec mobile app for iPhone and Android or simply by calling up and placing an order over the phone. Even without Internet access, you have the peace of mind that comes with having phone access to the CommSec office.

What markets can I trade in with a CommSec Share Trading Account?

Depending on which CommSec trading account you choose, you will be able to trade in a number of different markets. CommSec clients are able to find trading opportunities in:

  • Australian shares. Buy shares in Australian companies that are listed on the ASX.
  • International shares. Buy shares in international companies that are listed on more than 25 of the biggest global stock exchanges by opening an international account. Exchanges include the NYSE, NASDAQ, LSE and the TYO.
  • Contracts for difference (CFDs). Gain access to CFDs through a CommSec CFDs Account, allowing you to either trade short-term market swings or to hedge your overall share holdings.
  • Options trading. Trade options that allow you to buy more shares in a company at a specific price level. CommSec also gives trading access to some exchange traded options.
  • ETFs. Buy and sell listed funds such as ETFs and other exchange traded products that are traded on the ASX.

What account types are available with a CommSec Share Trading Account?

Through CommSec you can open an Australian share trading account, an international share trading account and a CFDs account.

In terms of trade settlement, you can use either a CommSec CDIA account, your own account or you can trade through margin loans. This is what you can expect:

Trade with the CommSec CDIA account

If you choose to conduct trades using the CDIA account, you'll benefit from lower brokerage fees and no account keeping fees. Plus, you can earn tiered interest on funds in your account and you have access to all free live trading tools and market research.

  • Trade shares from $10
  • No account keeping fees
  • Earn interest on funds over $10,000

Trade using your own cash account

If you choose to trade with CommSec using your own cash account you’ll still have access to all the same tools, however you’ll be charged a higher brokerage fee (starting at $29.95).

  • Trade shares from $29.95
  • Access free live trading tools

Margin trading

If you choose to trade using a margin loan, you get access to the same benefits such as free trading tools and live market data however you'll also get access to risk management tools and portfolio monitoring.

  • Trade shares from $10
  • Trade shares and invest in managed funds using borrowed funds.
  • Access risk management and portfolio monitoring tools

What types of customer support is available from CommSec?

A broker the size of CommSec is naturally expected to have a high level of customer support access. Whether you have queries, problems or want to execute an order, you have a number of choices when it comes to getting in contact with CommSec.

  • Frequently asked questions (FAQ). The CommSec FAQ page is fairly in-depth and you can also download product disclosure statements and information guides throughout the site.
  • Phone support. CommSec has two English speaking numbers for clients located both within Australia and overseas. It also has a Cantonese/Mandarin number for use within Australia.
  • Email support. The support email address allows clients to articulate their problems via text and questions are usually answered within one business day.
  • Questionnaire form. Unfortunately this form doesn't lead to a live chat session. The questionnaire form on its support page feels a little redundant, especially because attaching any supporting screenshots or documentation will open up an email window anyway.
  • Twitter support. CommSec has now opened a dedicated @CommSecSupport Twitter handle and it goes some way to supplementing the broker's lack of live chat feature.

Overall, CommSec customers can expect a reasonably high level of customer support for an online broker. The only disappointing feature when it comes to CommSec's customer service is the fact that it doesn't have a live chat option. The live form on its website isn't actually live and it can take one to two days for a response to come through via email. That's frustrating for clients who have short questions that could easily be answered on the spot by a live chat representative.

What are the fees I can expect from a CommSec Share Trading Account?

A CommSec Share Trading Account has a few basic fees and brokerage charges you need to be aware of:

  • Brokerage fees. These vary depending on the amount you're trading and the cash settlement method you choose:
    • Trades placed through a CDIA cash settlement account. If you're a CHESS sponsored customer and settle through either your CDIA account or a CommSec margin loan account, you'll pay $10 brokerage for trades of Australian shares up to $1,000. For trades between $1,000 and $10,000, you'll incur a $19.95 brokerage fee. This fee rises to $29.95 for trades between $10,000 and $25,000 and to 0.12% for trades over $25,000.
    • Trades placed through a non-CDIA cash settlement account. If you choose to settle your trades through a different cash settlement account then trades up to $10,000 will incur a $29.95 brokerage fee. This fee rises to 0.31% (for trades over $10,000 and $59.95 for trades over $10,000 that are placed over the phone).
    • International fees. Brokerage fees vary depending on which country the shares you want to buy are listed. Fees for US shares are US$19.95 for trades up to US$5,000, US$29.95 for trades up to US$10,000 and 0.31% for trades above US$10,0001 while shares listed on the London Stock Exchange are US$39.95 or 0.40%, whichever is greater.
    • Phone fees. Trades settled over the phone charge much higher brokerage fees. Transactions up to and including $10,000 charge $59.95.
  • Ongoing account fees. You pay nothing when you first open a CommSec Share Trading Account and there are no monthly account-keeping or inactivity fees.

In terms of brokerage fees, it's beneficial for clients to settle through a Commonwealth Bank account and use the CommSec online platform rather than placing trades over the phone.

How do I pay for shares on a CommSec Share Trading Account?

You have a few options when it comes to paying for your share trades through CommSec. When you buy shares, settlement must occur within two business days – this is called "T+2". This means your funds will need to be available by this date or you'll incur a fee. Options are:

  • Automatic direct debit. CommSec can automatically direct debit funds from your nominated bank account. This is the most simple and common way to pay for your share trades.
  • BPAY. The alternative to automatic direct debit for Australians is through BPAY. Your BPAY details can be found within your CommSec Share Trading Account profile page and can be used as an alternative.

What are the pros and cons of using a CommSec Share Trading Account?


    • Trusted share trading name. Not only is CommSec a trusted institution in the Australian share trading space, its intuitive user interface makes buying and selling shares a seamless process.
    • No inactivity fee. CommSec does not charge an inactivity fee or monthly fee on its standard Australian shares account.
    • News and research. Having access to CommSec's team of trusted analysts is a huge positive for traders looking to gain an edge in their share trading decision making.
    • Data and monitoring tools. CommSec's data and monitoring tools including company profiles and releases, while market alerts are second to none.


  • Access to WebIRESS isn't free. Unfortunately the popular live data charting software isn't included in a basic CommSec account. However, it can be added for a monthly fee or by completing a minimum number of trades per month.
  • Lack of live chat support. Sometimes you just want a quick answer to a short question. The fact you can only call or email your questions is inconvenient.
  • Inactivity fee on international account: While CommSec has no inactivity fee on its Australian shares account, inactive international accounts charge $25 per year.

How do I open a CommSec Share Trading Account?

When you're ready to open a CommSec Share Trading Account, simply click the open account button on the CommSec website, then begin the following four-step process:

  1. Residency and ID check
  2. Provide personal details
  3. Register interest
  4. Download trading platform and mobile app

In order to complete the account opening process, have the following documentation handy:

  • You must first be 18 years or older
  • Name
  • Address and contact details
  • Valid email address
  • Mobile phone number
  • Tax file number

CommSec Share Trading Account frequently asked questions

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21 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    loraineJuly 15, 2019

    Please advise me of my Commsec no. I have changed address several times but my address still says the same.

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      NikkiJuly 17, 2019Staff

      Hi Loraine,

      Thanks for getting in touch!

      It would be best to reach out to Commsec directly to obtain your Commsec number. Kindly note that we do not work with Commsec and the information such as account numbers are not visible to us.

      Hope this clarifies!


  2. Default Gravatar
    ShaneFebruary 19, 2019

    I am thinking of opening a commsec account and wondering if I can transfer my shares I have already from a previous company share program?

    Cheers shane

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      NikkiFebruary 20, 2019Staff

      Hi Shane,

      Thanks for getting in touch! You can find information on how to open a Commsec account on the page above that says “How do I open a CommSec share trading account?” and you should be able to transfer shares from a previous company share program to this account unless the other company prohibits it. Hope this helps!


  3. Default Gravatar
    jeremyMarch 15, 2018

    Is it possible to set up and purchase shares in an ITF (in trust for) my young 15 year old daughter with commsec?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JoshuaMarch 22, 2018Staff

      Hi Jeremy,

      Thanks for getting in touch with finder.

      One of the requirements to use the CommSec platform is for the user to be 18 years old and above. CommSec’s website mentioned this:

      “CommSec cannot trade on behalf of a minor. You can however open an account in the name of an adult who will act as trustee until the minor turns 18. Once the minor has turned 18, the shares can be transferred into an account in their name.”

      Just in case you want to explore other share trading platforms, you may want to check out this page.

      I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach us out again.

      Have a wonderful day!


  4. Default Gravatar
    ArielFebruary 14, 2018

    Is there a minimum amount I need in my cash account for trading or investing ?

    • Default Gravatar
      JoelMarch 1, 2018

      Hi Ariel,

      Thanks for leaving a question on finder.

      No, you’re not required to have a minimum savings/money in your cash account so you can trade/invest. But of course, if you are linking your bank account to the CommSec Share Trading Account, during the payment process, you should make sure to have enough funds in your bank account to pay for the shares.

      Aside from paying through a linked bank account, you can also pay for your shares via BPAY or visiting a CBA branch.


    • Default Gravatar
      JoelMarch 1, 2018

      Hi Ariel,

      Thanks for leaving a question on finder.

      No, you’re not required to have a minimum savings/money in your cash account so you can trade/invest. But of course, if you are linking your bank account to the CommSec Share Trading Account, during the payment process, you should make sure to have enough funds in your bank account to pay for the shares.

      Aside from paying through a linked bank account, you can also pay for your shares via BPAY or visiting a CBA branch.

      If you need anything else, please send us a message anytime.


  5. Default Gravatar
    BobJuly 6, 2017

    If I buy US shares from Company X thru Commsec will Commsec own the shares on my behalf or will I be the actual owner? i.e. on the company share register for this share purchase who will be listed as the owner? many thanx.

    • Default Gravatar
      DanielleJuly 10, 2017

      Hi Bob,

      Thank you for contacting finder. We are a comparison website and general information service, we’re more than happy to offer general advice.

      When you buy a share through CommSec, you become a part owner of that company. You will receive similar benefits to owning any business, such as a share of profits distributed through dividends, and usually the right to vote at company meetings. For more details you may contact CommSec directly or refer to their website.

      I hope this helps.


  6. Default Gravatar
    kellyMay 1, 2017

    Hi, I’m going to New Zealand for a month and would like to trade ASX through Commsec while I’m over there. Is this allowed or do I need to open an international Account to be able to trade ASX through Commsec?

    • Default Gravatar
      ArnoldMay 3, 2017

      Hi Kelly,

      Thanks for your inquiry.
      Yes, it is allowed. You can trade through the CommsecMobile app. It manages and monitors your investments, trade and stay on top of the market on the go with the free CommSec Mobile App, available through the iPhone App Store or Google Play.

      You can use your existing account in trading, no need to create a new one. Please visit this page – – for more information about this feature.

      Hope this information helped.


  7. Default Gravatar
    ParashosOctober 5, 2016

    I like to have excess on my account commsec

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ClarizzaOctober 6, 2016Staff

      Hi Parashos,

      Thanks for your comment. I have emailed you direct.


  8. Default Gravatar
    KEVINJuly 19, 2016


    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ClarizzaJuly 20, 2016Staff

      Hi Kevin,

      Thanks for your question.

      Just to confirm we are a comparison site – we provide general advice only. If you would like to know the current interest rate paid on funds held in a CDIA please contact CommSec Share trading.


  9. Default Gravatar
    KolJune 6, 2016

    Can I go to commonwealth bank branch and deposit cash into CDIA? I don’t have a key card for this account.
    My CDIA needs more funds for the transaction I made today and I’m not sure online transfer will make it to the settlement date.

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ShirleyJune 7, 2016Staff

      Hi Kol,

      Thanks for your question.

      Yes you should be able to deposit cash into your CDIA directly at a branch.

  10. Default Gravatar
    ChiApril 6, 2016

    Hi there,

    Currently, I live in Australia and I’m trading shares, so when I leave Australia, can I retain my account and then continue trading?

    Best regards.


    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ShirleyApril 7, 2016Staff

      Hi Chi,

      Thanks for your question.

      Yes as long as you have sufficient funds in your Commsec account you can continue trading.

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