Comdirect Review 2019

4.2 4 stars · Dec 2018
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Comdirect logo

Comdirect is a German online broker established in 1994. It is regulated by BaFin, the German financial authority. It is listed on the Xetra and London Stock Exchange. Its bank parent is Commerzbank.

Condirect is considered safe beacuse it is listed, regulated by a top-tier regulator and has a bank parent.

Recommended for German-speaking beginners and investors, focusing mainly on European markets.

Pros
  • Great research tools
  • Trading platform is customizable
  • Listed on a stock exchange, strong parent company
Cons
  • High fees
  • Complicated account opening for non-Germans/non-Austrians
  • Service only in German

As a plus

Comdirect has great research tools and provides innovative services like social trading. Its trading platform customizability is one of the best, so is great for frequent traders as well. It holds a banking license, is listed on stocks exchanges and has a strong parent company. All of these mean higher transparency and financial stability.

On the flip side

Comdirect's fees are high. The account opening for non-Germans/non-Austrians is very complicated. The full service is only in German.

Compare to other brokers

Comdirect review
Fees 2 stars

Comdirect trading fees are high, while non-trading fees are average.

Pros
  • No withdrawal fee
  • Transparent fee structure
Cons
  • High trading fees
  • Inactivity fee
  • High financing rate

Comdirect Fees - a snapshot
Assets Fee level Fee terms
US stock fee High 0.25% of trade value + €7.9
EURUSD fee High 2 pips spread cost
US tech fund fee Low 1% of trade value
Inactivity fee Average €5.85 per quarter if less than 2 trades per quarter

To get things rolling, let's go over some broker fee lingo. You need to keep an eye on trading fees, financing rates, and non-trading fees.

We compare Comdirect fees with its peers, DEGIRO and Saxo Bank.

Let's start with the trading fees.

Trading fees

Comdirect's trading fees are high, although the fee structure is transparent.

Stock and ETF fees

Comdirect's stock trading fees are also high if you compare with a discount brokers like DEGIRO.

Stock fees of a $2,000 trade
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
USA $14.7 $0.7 $15.0
Germany $11.3 $5.7 $13.7
UK $14.7 $5.7 $11.6

The stock trading fee calculation is volume based and has a minimum and a maximum amount per one trade.

Comdirect stock fees
Market Commission Min Max
Germany €4.9 + 0.25% €9.9 €59.9
Other markets €7.9 + 0.25% €12.9 €62.9

Forex fees

Comdirect's forex fees comes high as well if you compare with the best forex brokes.

Forex fees of a $20,000 30:1 position open, 1-week-hold, and close
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
EURUSD benchmark fee $28.6 - $63.7
EURGBP benchmark fee $22.1 - $32.3

Comdirect does not charge any commission for forex trading. The fees are incorporated into the spread and the financing rate.

Fund fees

Comdirect's fund fees can be low as you can always choose discount funds which you can buy free of charge.

A $2,000 fund buy fees
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
USA tech fund buy $20.0 $9.5 -
Europe stock fund buy $20.0 $10.6 -

Comdirect fund buy fees vary between 0% and 5%. We calculated with a 1% average.

Bond fees

The bond fees are average .

Bond fees of a $10,000 trade
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
USA $39.7 - $91.2
Europe $36.3 $11.5 $91.2

The same calculation formula applies to bonds as to the stocks.

Comdirect bond fees
Market Commission Min Max
Germany €4.9 + 0.25% €9.9 €59.9
Other markets €7.9 + 0.25% €12.9 €62.9

Options fees

Comdirect's options fees are high.

Stock index options fees of 10 contracts
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
USA - $6.5 $60.0
UK - - $72.5
Germany $51.3 $10.3 $68.4

Comdirect's stock index option fees are calculated based on the following formula: €4.5 / contract, min. €19 / one trade.

Futures fees

The stock index futures fees are high as well.

Stock index futures fees of 10 contracts
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
USA - $6.5 $60.0
UK - $30.3 $72.5
Germany $51.3 $10.3 $68.4

Comdirect's stock index futures are based on the same formula as the stock index options: €4.5 / contract, min. €19 / one trade.

CFD fees

CFD fees are average.

Stock CFD fees, commission of a $2,000 trade
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
USA $7.3 $0.7 $20.0
UK $7.6 $5.7 $11.6
Germany $7.6 $5.7 $13.7

Comdirect offers lower commissions for stock CFDs compared to the real stocks.

Comdirect CFD commissions
Stocks 0.1%, min. €4.9, max. €59.9
DAX futures 0.01%, min. €4.9, max. €59.9
Other index futures 0.02%, min. €4.9, max. €59.9
Indices No
Currencies No
Commodities No
Bonds no

Crypto fees

At Comdirect you can buy cryptos through ETNs (exchange-traded notes) and certificates. At the time of the review, you can trade with Bitcoin and Ether ETNs on the Stockholm Stock Exchange. If you want to understand what is a crypto ETN check out our crypto blogpost.

Financing rates

Comdirect has high financing rates.

When you trade with leveraged products, like forex or CFDs, you are borrowing money from your broker. This has a borrowing cost, called the financing rate you pay for the broker every day based on the volume of your position.

Comdirect yearly financing rates
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
Apple financing rate 7.7% 4.3% 7.1%
Vodafone financing rate 5.9% 2.5% 5.3%
EURUSD financing rate 6.8% - 15.5%

We picked popular trading instruments, like Apple stock or EURUSD and compared them for you.

Comdirect charges 4% premium over the benchmark rate of the product. For example, for Apple CFD is 4% + USD Libor rate.

Non-trading fees

Comdirect has average non-trading fees. Withdrawal is free of charge, however, you have to pay a €5,85 quarterly inactivity fee if you do not trade 2 times in a quarter.

  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
Account fee No No No
Inactivity fee Yes No Yes
Withdrawal fee $0 $0 $0

Comdirect review
Account opening 2 stars

Account opening is easy and fully digital for German and Austrian clients, but complicated and analog for other citizens.

Pros
  • Fully digital account opening process for German and Austrian clients
Cons
  • Complicated account opening for non-German citizens

Can you open an account?

It is not transparent from which countries you can open an account. We believe from most European countries it is possible to open an account. However, opening an account for a non-German/non-Austrian citizen is more complicated.

We do not recommend to open an account if you do not speak German since the full service, including the customer service is in German. 

Minimum deposit

At Comdirect there is no minimum deposit except for the Auslandsorder account. This requires a €500 minimum deposit.

Account types

You can open four account types:

  • Inslandsorder account: this account gives you access to German stock exchanges.
  • Auslandsorder account: this account gives you access to international stock exchanges.
  • Live trading account: this account gives you access to Comdirect's own OTC market. You can trade here stocks, funds, bonds, warrants and certificates.
  • CFD account: you can trade CFDs via these accounts.

How to open your account

You can open your account conveniently via a live video identification or via an online form if you are from Germany or Austria. So account opening is fully digital for you.

Account opening for other citizens are very complicated. You will have to go through a notarial identification process at your home country and send your application via the post.

 

 

Comdirect review
Deposit and withdrawal 4 stars

The deposit and withdrawal is free of charge, but you can it do it only via a bank transfer.

Pros
  • Free withdrawal
  • Free deposit
Cons
  • Credit/Debit card deposit and withdrawal not available

Account base currencies

You can have 13 base currencies for your Auslandsorder account: EUR, USD, GBP, AUD, JPY, CAD, MXN, NOK, PLN, SEK, ZAR, TRY, HUF. The rest of the accounts are euro based.

Comdirect review - Account opening

Deposit fees and options

Comdirect deposit fees are free of charge.

You can deposit only via a bank transfer.

Deposit options
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
Bank transfer Yes Yes Yes
Credit/Debit card No No Yes
Electronic wallets No Yes No

You can only deposit money from sources which are on your name.

Comdirect review - Deposit and withdrawal - Deposit

Withdrawal fees and options

Comdirect withdrawal fees are free of charge. This is a very similar fee compared to its peers.

Withdrawal fees and options
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
Bank Transfer Yes Yes Yes
Credit/Debit card No No No
Electronic wallets No No No
Withdrawal fee $0 $0 $0
Withdrawal Time 3 days 1 day 3 days

You can only withdraw money to accounts on your name.

Compare to other brokers

Comdirect review
Web trading platform 4 stars

Comdirect's web trading platform is easy-to-use and it well customizable. You can also use several order types. The platform can be slow and the price alert function is missing.

Pros
  • Good search function
  • Good customizability (for chart, for workspace)
  • User-friendly
Cons
  • No price alerts available
  • Slow
  • Separate platform for CFD trading

Comdirect Platforms to Choose From
Trading platform Score Available
Web 4 / 5 stars Yes
Mobile 3 / 5 stars Yes
Desktop - No

In this Comdirect review, we evaluated the ProTrader platform. You can use the platform only in German. For CFD trading you have to use another trading platform.

Look and feel

Comdirect's web trading platform, ProTrader is a good and intuitive trading platform. Its customizability is really great, you can set up as many layouts as you wish. However, its speed could be better, sometimes it is rather slow.

Comdirect review - Web trading platform

Login and security

You can use a two-step authentication, but in a convenient way. After you open your account, you get a printed code card from Comdirect. You have to store this card and use these codes for the login.

Search function

Comdirect's search function is good, but you have to know what you are looking for. For example, for the "Apple" search word you get quite a long list of products, so you should know that you look for the Apple stock at the NASDAQ stock exchange. We liked that you can filter the results along asset categories and markets. For example you can search only for stocks on the London Stock Exchange.

Comdirect review - Web trading platform - Search

Placing orders

The order panel is quite advanced, the available order types are the following:

  • Market
  • Limit
  • Stop-loss
  • Trailing stop-loss
  • All or none
  • Fill or kill
  • OCO
  • Immediate or cancel

We really like that you can choose the exchange where you would like to execute your order. The only other broker which provides this is Interactive Broker that has the most advanced trading platform. However, we missed the stop limit order.

If you are not familiar with the order types, read this overview.

The available order terms are today and the last trading day of the month.

Comdirect review - Web trading platform - Order panel

Alerts and notifications

You can receive email notification about your executed trades, but price alerts are missing.

Portfolio and fee reports

The portfolio and fee reports are transparent.

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Comdirect review
Mobile trading platform 3 stars

Comdirect's mobile trading platform is good for execution, but is not user-friendly.

Pros
  • Good variety of order types
  • Good search function
  • Order confirmation available
Cons
  • No price alerts available
  • Not user-friendly

Comdirect has two mobile trading apps. The Comdirect mobile app and the Comdirect trading app. We evaluated the first since it is more advanced.

Both apps are available only in German.

Look and feel

Comdirect's mobile trading platform is far from being the best. It is ok for trading execution, but nothing more. It looks like a web platform packaged into an app.

 

Comdirect review - Mobile trading platform

Login and security

You can use both one and two step login.

Search function

The search function is easy to use and usually finds the product you are looking for. The only trick is that it always returns the products listed in the German exchanges and the primary exchange of the product. For example, you search for Vodafone and app returns the Vodafone stock listed on the German stock exchange instead of the London Stock Exchange. Therefore, you should change the exchange after the search if you wish to trade on the primary exchange.

Placing orders

The order placement is very similar to the web trading platform.

Alerts and notifications

Same as the web trading platform.

Portfolio and fee reports

Same as the web trading platform.

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Comdirect review
Markets and products 3 stars

At Comdirect you can trade with all asset classes. The market and product coverage is mid-range, but there are a lot of investment funds, one of the bests.

  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
Stock   Yes Yes
ETF Yes Yes Yes
Forex Yes No Yes
Fund Yes Yes No
Bond Yes Yes Yes
Options Yes Yes Yes
Futures Yes Yes Yes
CFD Yes Yes Yes
Crypto Yes Yes Yes

Comdirect has a good market and product coverage. You can trade with all asset classes. 

In most of the asset classes, its closest competitors, DEGIRO and Saxo Bank has wider market coverage. The one exception is the investment fund, where Comsdirect is one of the bests in the marker.

Comdirect also offers a social trading service though Wikifolio and a robo-advisory service as well.

Stock and ETF

Stocks and ETFs
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
Number of stock markets 18 32 36
Number of ETFs 1,500 5,400 3,100

If you open an Auslander account, you will have access to the following markets:

  • Australia
  • Canada
  • France
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Netherlands
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Spain
  • UK
  • USA

At Comdirect, you cannot reach penny stock trading.

Forex

Currency pairs
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
Forex - number of currency pairs 71 - 182

Fund

Fund providers
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
Number of fund providers 150 68 -

Bond

Bonds
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
Number of bonds 30,000 1,000 38,000

Options

Options markets
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
Number of option markets 4 13 5

Futures

Futures markets
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
Number of future markets 4 12 23

CFD

CFDs
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
Number of stock CFD 1,200 900 8,900
Number of ETF CFDs - - 700
Stock index CFDs 30 - 29

The leverage level of the CFDs cannot be changed, so you can trade only with the default leverage levels.

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 81% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Crypto

Cryptos
  Comdirect DEGIRO Saxo Bank
Cryptocurrencies 2 2 2

Comdirect review
Research 5 stars

Comdirect research is great with many technical and fundamental analysis tools. The asset class screening functions are awesome.

Pros
  • Analyst recommendations for stocks, bonds, etc.
  • Fundamental data
  • Good interactive chart
Cons
None

Most of the research functions are available from Comdirect's website and not from the trading platform.

Recommendations

You have recommendations for stocks from the biggest research houses and inveatment banks like Morgan Stanley. These recommendations are based on fundamental data.

Comdirect review - Research - Recommendations

Trading signals based on technical analysis are also provided.

Fundamental data

You will find quite substantial amount of fundamental data on Comdirect's website. The most is provided for stocks. Here you will find historical income statement and balance sheet data for five years, but also estimations for the next three years.

Basic fundamental data is also reachable for indices, funds and bonds. For example, in case of indices you can easily find out which stocks are part of the index.

Comdirect review - Research - Fundamental data

Charting

You will enjoy Comdirect's high quality charting tool. The functionality of the chart is great and you can use more than 30 technical indicators. The design is not the most up-to-date, is rather basic and clean, but we liked it.

And the best thing: you can create and save as many charts as you wish. This is a function only a few trading platform can provide. This will definitely ease your work if you would like to do some technical analysis.

Comdirect review - Research - Charting

News feed

A good quality news feed exists on the website, but the trading platform's news feed is not the best and the search function was not working for us.

It is not possible to sign up for any newsletters, but an economic and stock exchange calendar is at place.

Other research tools you will enjoy

If you are fond of research tools, Comdirect will not disappoint you.

You can use Wikifolio as a social trading tool integrated into Comdirect.

Comdirect is very strong in screening tools as well. A screening tool is basically a very advanced searching tool, where you save tons of filters to find the best products for yourself. Comdirect has screening tools for almost all the asset classes. This is a unique function, no other broker provides it.

Beyond these, several other tools, like the risk-return or the scenario analysis tool will help you in your trading journey.

Comdirect review - Research

Compare research pros and cons

Comdirect review
Customer service 4 stars

Comdirect provides a very helpful and reliable customer service. You can reach out to them in several channels. On the flip side, communication is only in German.

Pros
  • Phone support available
  • Live chat available
  • Relevant answers
Cons
  • Communication only in German
  • Slow phone support

You can reach Comdirect's customer support via many channels:

  • Phone
  • Live chat
  • Video chat
  • Email

The language of the customer support is only German.

The quality of the live chat and email was good. The answers were fast and relevant. However, the phone support was not the best. The customer support did not answer our call for several minutes.

Comdirect review - Customer service

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Comdirect review
Education 4 stars

If you want to improve your personal investment knowledge, Comdirect has a lot to offer, but only in German.

Pros
  • Trading platform tutorial videos
  • Educational videos
  • Demo account
Cons
None

At Comdirect you will find trading platform tutorial videos, general educational videos and education texts.

You can also set up a demo account.

Comdirect review - Education

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Comdirect review
Safety

Comdirect has a banking background and it is regulated by BaFin, the German financial regulator. It is listed on the Xetra and London Stock Exchange. Furthermore, you have €20,000 account protection for securities and €20,000 for cash.

Pros
  • Regulated by top tier financial authority
  • High amount of account protection
  • Banking background
  • Listed on stock exchange
  • Negative balance protection available
  • Well disclosed financial information
Cons
None

Comdirect is a German broker established in 1994 serving mainly German, Austrian and Swiss clients. Is Comdirect safe? To be certain, it is best to check two things: how you are protected if something goes south and what the background of the broker is.

How you are protected

Comdirect legal entity

Client country

Investor protection amount Regulator Legal entity
All countries

€20,000 for securities

€100,000 for cash

Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht (BAFIN) comdirect bank AG

Negative blance protection is provided for CFDs.

Background

Comdirect is a German online broker established in 1994. It has 24 years track record. The longer the track record, the better. Longer track record means the company was able to manage financially tough time periods, like the financial crisis.

Its parent company is Commerzbank, which holds a 82% stake in it. This is a good sign since a strong parent company provides further financial stability for an online broker.

Comdirect also has banking license and is listed on a stock exchange. Both guarantees higher transparency and more regulatory scrutiny.

Most of the products you can trade with Comdirect are exchange-traded, like stocks and ETFs . This is good news. If Comdirect defaults your assets still will be safe. However, there are a couple of exceptions, like CFDs or certificates. You will face a counterparty risk while trading these products. The counterparty of these products is usually Comdirect. If Comdirect defaults and cannot pay you, you still will be covered by the investor protection up to €100,000 for cash and €20,000 for securities.

Having a banking background and a bank parent company, being listed on the stock exchange and regulated by BAFIN are all great signs for Comdirect's safety.

Filter the brokers by investor protection

Comdirect review
Bottom line

Comdirect is a German online broker established in 1994. Its parent company is Commerzbank, one of the biggest banks in Germany.

It is a good broker if you speak German.

It has great research functions, a good trading platform. Its financial stability and transparency is high thanks to its parent company and its stock exchange listing.

On the other hand, the full service is German and fees are high. Account opening is possible for non-Germans/non-Austrians, but it is very complicated.

There is a Demo account, so feel free to try it out.

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Comdirect logo

Comdirect is a German online broker established in 1994. It is regulated by BaFin, the German financial authority. It is listed on the Xetra and London Stock Exchange. Its bank parent is Commerzbank.

Condirect is considered safe beacuse it is listed, regulated by a top-tier regulator and has a bank parent.

Recommended for German-speaking beginners and investors, focusing mainly on European markets.

Compare to other brokers

Overall 4 stars

Pros
  • Great research tools
  • Trading platform is customizable
  • Listed on a stock exchange, strong parent company
Cons
  • High fees
  • Complicated account opening for non-Germans/non-Austrians
  • Service only in German

Fees 2 stars

Pros
  • No withdrawal fee
  • Transparent fee structure
Cons
  • High trading fees
  • Inactivity fee
  • High financing rate

Account opening 2 stars

Pros
  • Fully digital account opening process for German and Austrian clients
Cons
  • Complicated account opening for non-German citizens

Deposit and withdrawal 4 stars

Pros
  • Free withdrawal
  • Free deposit
Cons
  • Credit/Debit card deposit and withdrawal not available

Web trading platform 4 stars

Pros
  • Good search function
  • Good customizability (for chart, for workspace)
  • User-friendly
Cons
  • No price alerts available
  • Slow
  • Separate platform for CFD trading

Mobile trading platform 3 stars

Pros
  • Good variety of order types
  • Good search function
  • Order confirmation available
Cons
  • No price alerts available
  • Not user-friendly

Markets and products 3 stars

The available asset classes to trade:

  • Stock
  • ETF
  • Forex
  • Fund
  • Bond
  • Options
  • Futures
  • CFD
  • Crypto

Research 5 stars

Pros
  • Analyst recommendations for stocks, bonds, etc.
  • Fundamental data
  • Good interactive chart
Cons
None

Customer service 4 stars

Pros
  • Phone support available
  • Live chat available
  • Relevant answers
Cons
  • Communication only in German
  • Slow phone support

Education 4 stars

Pros
  • Trading platform tutorial videos
  • Educational videos
  • Demo account
Cons
None

Safety

Pros
  • Regulated by top tier financial authority
  • High amount of account protection
  • Banking background
  • Listed on stock exchange
  • Negative balance protection available
  • Well disclosed financial information
Cons
None

AUTHOR OF THIS REVIEW

Gergely Korpos
Gergely Korpos
Co-founder, CPO
Gergely's aim is to bring more clarity into personal investing. He has 10 years of experience in financial markets with GE Money, KPMG and MOL. He concluded thousands of trades as a commodity trader and financial portfolio manager

METHODOLOGY

Everything you find on Brokerchooser is based on reliable data and unbiased information. We combine our 10+ years finance experience with readers feedback. Read more about our methodology

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