Review: Is Syfe Trade The Best Broker For US Stocks? 

There’s a new broker in town for those interested in the US stock market. Calling themselves a neobroker, Syfe Trade is a brand-new service offered by robo-advisor Syfe. 

How does Syfe Trade stack up against other players like moomoo, Tiger, or Interactive Brokers? Read our review to find out. (P.S. this review is based on our early access experience with Syfe Trade.)

What is Syfe Trade?

By now, many people would have heard of Syfe or seen their ads somewhere. Syfe was launched in 2019 as a robo-advisor that offers ready-made portfolios. Now, they’re branching out into stock trading through their new brokerage platform Syfe Trade.

Syfe Trade lets you buy and sell US stocks and ETFs. For now, only the US market is available, though they say they plan to introduce trading for Singapore stocks soon.

So what makes Syfe Trade so special in a space that’s crowded with so many other brokerage platforms? For me, they stand out mainly due to these features:

  • Free monthly trades
  • One of the lowest commissions for US stocks
  • Fractional shares
  • No withdrawal and inactivity fees
  • Easy to use platform 

Free trades every month?!

Yes, that’s right! During their launch promotion from now to 31 March 2022, you get 5 free trades each month, which you can use to either buy or sell a stock. There’s no limit either e.g. you can use your free trade allowance to buy as many units of a stock of you want.

This is a gamechanger. Technically, if you aren’t one to trade very frequently, you can use Syfe Trade to invest commission-free in US stocks. After 31 March 2022, you’ll still get 2 free trades each month.

Very low fees

During this promotional period, the fee for your 6th trade onwards is just US$0.99 per trade. That’s one of the cheapest for US stocks. Granted, you might get commission-free trades with TD Ameritrade but the withdrawal fees are quite hefty and not quite worth the zero commissions.

After the promotional period ends, your fee outside your free trade allowance is a flat US$1.49 per trade – cheaper than moomoo and Tiger. 

Source: Seedly

Fractional shares

Another plus point is the fractional shares feature that Syfe Trade offers. In essence, you can buy less than one whole unit of a share, starting from US$1. 

Here’s why it’s so powerful, regardless of how much you have to invest.

Let’s say you only have S$1,000 to invest. You want to buy Amazon stock, but it currently costs around US$3,220 (S$4,333) per share. To afford the stock, you probably need to save up over a few months before making your investment. As they say, time in the market is key, and you could be missing out by having to wait. With fractional shares, you can invest a full S$1,000 into Amazon right now and own about 0.3 units of the stock. 

What if you have S$10,000 to invest? Well, fractional trading is still a useful feature to have. Imagine you have the following stocks on your watchlist:

You want each stock to be equally weighted (20%) in your portfolio. If you can only buy whole shares (what most brokers allow), that’s impossible considering their current share prices.

But with fractional shares, you can split your money evenly between these 5 stocks by buying exactly $2,000 worth of each share. In essence, you’re maximizing every dollar you have.

At the moment, only Interactive Brokers and Syfe Trade offer fractional trading.

Easy to use

I was pleasantly surprised to find out that Syfe Trade is so easy to use. While I think it’s commendable that moomoo and Tiger try to offer you lots of charts and news, there’s such a thing as information overload.

Syfe Trade is uncluttered and you can quickly see where to buy or sell a stock, or create your watchlist. 

Only level 1 market data is offered, unlike moomoo and Tiger which offers free level 2 market data. Personally, I think level 2 market data is good to have, but not necessary unless you’re an active day trader.

As someone who just wants to buy and sell US stocks whenever there’s a good opportunity, I prefer Syfe Trade’s simple and straightforward interface.

How to open a Syfe Trade account

#1: If you’re new to Syfe, you need to first download the Syfe app via Google Play, App Store or Huawei App Gallery. (At the moment, Syfe Trade is not available on desktop.)

#2: Create an account using Singpass for quicker signup. You can also manually enter your details.

#3: Complete your investment knowledge assessment

#4: Accept contract details

#5: Transfer funds into your Syfe Trade account.

#6: If you transferred SGD funds, convert your SGD to USD to start trading. For the FX conversion to work, you need to convert a minimum of SGD 1.

#7: You can start to trade with USD funds in your buying power. To buy a stock, the minimum trade value is USD 1.

You can use PayNow, FAST, or wire transfer to transfer funds. According to Syfe, the funds will be credited to your Syfe Trade account within one business day. For me, the money was in my account in about 10 minutes. 

If you’re already a Syfe client, take note that the bank account and UEN for Syfe Trade is different from their Syfe Wealth transfer! As a quick check, the recipient bank for Syfe Trade is HSBC Bank (Corporate) Account. For Syfe Wealth, it’s DBS Bank

Pro tip for existing Syfe clients: Toggle to Syfe Trade via your Syfe Wealth homepage settings (the human icon at the top left). Click on the Syfe Trade banner to access the service. You can toggle back to Syfe Wealth through the settings icon too.

Syfe Trade Launch Promotion

New Syfe Trade customers can get $60 in cash credits when they fund at least S$1,000 to their Syfe Trade account AND make their first trade. The cash credits can be used to buy any US stock or ETF of your choice.

If you refer friends to Syfe Trade, you get another $30 in cash credits.

BONUS: If you are brand new to Syfe, get an extra $10 in cash credits when you use the code FRUGALFOX

More details here.

Cash credits will be given in 7 days but I received mine in 1 day.

Pro tip: You can check if your cash credit has been given from your transfer history. Go to Account (the icon with three dashes at the top) > My funds > Transfer history.

Final thoughts

So is Syfe Trade the best broker for US stocks? If you’re looking for an easy, affordable, and super accessible way to buy and sell US stocks, Syfe Trade fits the bill. Plus, the free monthly trades and fractional shares are very attractive.

But if you want to do options / margin trading, then Syfe Trade probably isn’t enough for you. You might want to consider Interactive Brokers instead.

Given that I’m already invested in the Syfe REIT+ and Core Equity100 portfolios, I like how I can view my US stock holdings and roboadvisory portfolios all in one place.

Lastly, having used Syfe for close to two years, I feel assured investing with them. Syfe is regulated by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and individual accounts are insured by the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) up to US$500,000 against brokerage failure.

If you’re interested to trade for free and earn Syfe’s welcome cash credits, open your Syfe Trade account here. Use the code FRUGALFOX to get an additional $10 cash credit upon funding your account and making your first trade!

Disclaimer: This article is not meant to be financial advice. Always do your own research before investing!

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