nabtrade vs CommSec: Which should you apply for?

While CommSec offers a lower brokerage fee option for Australian shares, natrade is more competitive on global stock trading.

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CommSec and nabtrade may be two of Australia's most popular share trading platforms, but each one has its own pros and cons depending on how you prefer to invest.

If you're tossing up between opening an account with one of the two, this guide is designed to help choose the best account for your needs. No two investors are alike, so it's important to compare the account features of CommSec and nabtrade that are most relevant to you.

nabtrade vs CommSec features

To help you make a better informed decision, we've listed the main fees and features of CommSec and nabtrade.

nabtrade
  • $14.95 per trade up to $5,000
  • $19.95 per trade over $5,000
  • 0.11% of trade value for trades over $20,000.00
  • Inactivity fee: No
CommSec
  • $10.00 per trade up to $1000 (with CommSec CDIA cash account)
  • $19.95 per trade between $1000 and $10,000 (with a CommSec CDIA cash account)
  • $29.95 per trade between $10,000 and $25,000 (with your own cash account)
  • 0.12% of trade value for trades over $25,000
  • Inactivity fee: No
nabtrade
  • All international markets: AU$14.95 for trades up to Up to $5,000
  • AU$19.95 for trades $5,000.01 - $20,000.00
  • 0.11% of trade value for trades over $20,000.01
  • FX fee: 0.50% to 0.80% of the trade transaction value
  • Inactivity fee: 0.50% of average daily international holding balance (payable monthly)
CommSec
  • North America: US$19.95 for trades up to US$5,000, US$29.95 for trades up to USD $10,000, 0.31% for trades above USD $10,000
  • Europe, Canada, Middle East, Asia Pacific: USD $39.95 or 0.40%, whichever is greater
  • FX fee: 0.60% of the trade transaction value
  • Inactivity fee: $25 per year
nabtrade
  • Free dynamic data: Latest market insights will help develop your investment strategy.
  • Advanced charting: Leverage nabtrade's charting tools to locate your next trading opportunity.
CommSec
  • Market insights: CommSec provide live share market data and reports, video tutorials, movements in stock prices and the latest market trends.
  • Executive interviews: Video interviews with leading industry figures discussing investment strategies and opportunities.
nabtrade
  • Order types: At market, limit order (with expiry date)
  • Global Scanner: Source strategies for both local and global stocks.
  • Real-time notifications: Keep up to date with any movements in share trading prices or volumes of shares traded.
CommSec
  • Order types: Market order, limit order (with expiry date)
  • Charting tools: These can help you compare stocks and assess their value.
  • Conditional orders: Using conditional orders can help you ensure your trades are placed even when you’re not actively assessing the market.
nabtrade
  • Trading Central: This provides strategic insights to help with the timing of your investments.
  • Wise-Owl.com: This identifies opportunities amongst ASX emerging companies.
  • Investing Insights: Investment newsletter, webinars, podcasts and events for nabtrade members.
CommSec
  • Research platform: With a diverse range of research tools and reports, you can make better informed investment decisions.
nabtrade
  • FAQ: nabtrade feature a comprehensive FAQ section.
  • Customer Care: You can contact a nabtrade customer service representative Monday-Friday 8am-8pm AEST.
CommSec
  • CommSec Advisory: This advisory platform helps you to increase your wealth by accessing resources and professional guidance.
  • Customer Care: You can contact a CommSec customer service representative Monday-Friday 8am-7pm AEST.
nabtrade
  • Access: Trade online with nabtrade using the IRESS Trader app- available on iOS.
  • Global Markets: Trade international shares across five markets, eight exchanges and over 10,000 global equities and exchange traded funds.
CommSec
  • Access: Manage your portfolio when you’re on the go with the free CommSec app, available on both iOS and Android.
  • Global Markets: Access over 25 global markets with professional stock recommendations to help you manage and diversify your portfolio.

Should you trade ASX shares with CommSec or nabtrade?

CommSec and nabtrade have features that will appeal to new and experienced share traders, but there are a few differences in their fees structures.

Neither platform has inactivity or account fees for the basic Australian trading accounts, however the tiered brokerage fees will suit different investment styles. For example, if you intend to trade just a few hundred dollars each time, CommSec has a cheaper option at $10 brokerage, compared to nabtrade's fee of $14. Alternatively, if you trade anything above $1000, nabtrade has a better brokerage deal in many cases.

How do they compare for global share trading?

The costs for overseas share trading is quite different. For example, CommSec's broker fee for US listed stocks us is upwards of $19.95, depending on the trade amount, while all other overseas markets are $39.95 and above.

On the other hand, nabtrade charges $14.95, regardless of the country the stock is listed in. Read our comprehensive CommSec vs nabtrade international trading comparison page for more details.

Placing a trade is a fairly similar set up on both CommSec and nabtrade, each platform offering market order or limit order trading types with optional expiry dates. The below images show what you'll see when you place a trade:

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CommSec trade order screen

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nabtrade order screen

Take a deeper look into the details of the CommSec and nabtrade share trading accounts. Click through the links below and take a look at our featured reviews of the two brokers.

  • CommSec share trading review - "With a CommSec share trading account, clients can buy shares online quickly, easily and most importantly, affordably. Whether via their browser or mobile app, CommSec clients have access to real time quotes, news and state of the art charting to help give them the competitive advantage required to succeed in the share market."
  • nabtrade online share trading review - "Whether you're a seasoned trader or someone who's new to the investment game, nabtrade simplifies the share trading process. The online trading platform has a user-friendly interface, comprehensive research and reporting available and a tiered service level tailored to your trading activity. Whatever type of trading you're looking to do, nabtrade can help you research, invest and optimise your trades and investments."

Compare share trading accounts

If neither CommSec or nabtrade look right for you, take a look at our guide on choosing the best online trading share trading platform or take a look at some of the brokers in the table below.

Name Product Standard brokerage fee Inactivity fee Markets International
eToro (global stocks)
US$0
US$10 per month if there’s been no login for 12 months
Global shares, US shares, ETFs
Yes
Zero brokerage share trading on US, Hong Kong and European stocks with trades as low as $50.
Note: This broker offers CFDs which are volatile investment products and most clients lose money trading CFDs with this provider.
Join the world’s biggest social trading network when you trade stocks, commodities and currencies from the one account.
IG Share Trading
$8
$50 per quarter if you make fewer than three trades in that period
ASX shares, Global shares
Yes
$0 brokerage for US and global shares plus get an active trader discount of $5 commission on Australian shares.
Enjoy some of the lowest brokerage fees on the market when trading Australian shares, international shares, plus get access to 24-hour customer support.
Superhero share trading
$5
No
ASX shares, US shares, ETFs
Yes
Earn up to 15,000 Qantas frequent flyer points when you transfer an exisiting balance or trade. Offer valid for all new and existing Superhero members until 28 February.
Pay zero brokerage on US stocks and all ETFs and just $5 (flat fee) to trade Australian shares from your mobile or desktop.
GO Markets Share Trading
$7.70
No
ASX shares, Forex, CFDs, ETFs
No
Pay zero brokerage on your first 20 trades and $7.70 after that on over 2,500 ASX listed shares from either your desktop or mobile.
ThinkMarkets Share Trading
$8
No
ASX shares
No
$8 flat fee brokerage for CHESS Sponsored ASX stocks (HIN ownership), plus free live stock price data on an easy to use mobile app.
Saxo Capital Markets (Classic account)
$5
No
ASX shares, Global shares, ETFs
Yes
Access 19,000+ stocks on 40+ exchanges worldwide
Low fees for Australian and global share trading, no inactivity fees, low currency conversion fee and optimised for mobile.
HSBC Online Share Trading
$19.95
No
ASX shares, mFunds, ETFs, Bonds
No
Limited-time offer: Join HSBC’s online trading account before 28 February 2022 and HSBC will reimburse you up to $100 on your first 5 trades. Also traders who transfer $50k+ will get a $200 bonus(T&Cs apply).
Make trades online with brokerage fees starting from just $19.95 with an HSBC Online Share Trading account. Plus gain access to complimentary expert research, trading ideas and tools.
SelfWealth (Basic account)
$9.5
No
ASX shares, US shares
Yes
Trade ASX and US shares for a flat fee of $9.50, regardless of the trade size.
New customers receive free access to Community Insights with SelfWealth Premium for the first 90 days. Follow other investors and benchmark your portfolio performance.
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Compare up to 4 providers

Important: Share trading can be financially risky and the value of your investment can go down as well as up. Standard brokerage is the cost to purchase $1,000 or less of equities without any qualifications or special eligibility. Where both CHESS sponsored and custodian shares are offered, we display the cheapest option.

Disclaimer: This information should not be interpreted as an endorsement of futures, stocks, ETFs, CFDs, options or any specific provider, service or offering. It should not be relied upon as investment advice or construed as providing recommendations of any kind. Futures, stocks, ETFs and options trading involves substantial risk of loss and therefore are not appropriate for all investors. Trading CFDs and forex on leverage comes with a higher risk of losing money rapidly. Past performance is not an indication of future results. Consider your own circumstances, and obtain your own advice, before making any trades.

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4 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    AndrewMay 29, 2019

    I need to sell my mothers shares. I have power of attorney. I’d like to see someone and not post the information back and forth. Who can I go to.

      Default Gravatar
      NikkiMay 30, 2019

      Hi Andrew,

      Good day and thanks for your inquiry.

      You may refer to our list of ASX brokers. Please take note that this service comes with a broker’s fee whenever you place a trade to buy or sell shares, so it’s worth your while to shop around for the online share trading platform that offers the lowest brokerage fees.

      Hope this helps!

      Best,
      Nikki

    Default Gravatar
    MaxJuly 16, 2016

    Hi : )

    Which one (Nabtrade vs Commsec) is better for international share trading (Mainly US)?

    Is my understanding correct that while Nabtrade offers a lower brokerage rate at $AUD 14.95/transaction, it charges a foreign currency exchange margin with every transaction.

    On the other hand, it appears that CommSec opens an US account (through Pershing LLC) and conduct transaction using this US account, hence avoiding the foreign exchange margin (unless of course you transfer money from the US account to the CommSec cash account).

    So while the Brokerage fee of CommSec appears higher ($US 19.95), the total cost per transaction between the two might end up being similar?

    Can you please provide further insight comparing the two platforms in regards to international share trading?

    Many thanks.

    Max

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ClarizzaJuly 25, 2016Staff

      Hi Max,

      Thanks for your feedback and comment.

      We’ll be writing up a case study on this however, the answer will depend on the amount the person wants to trade.

      Regards,
      Clarizza

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