Our bottom line
Saxo’s Stocks & Shares ISA has many of the elements an experienced and confident investor might want and need. It has a substantial range of eligible stocks, ETFs and trusts across leading global exchanges.
For investors who know what type of investments they want, they are likely to find it here with Saxo. Added to that, its pricing looks competitive and its risk management features help provide a safety net for even the most capable of investors.
Remember though, if you’re ever unsure about the suitability of an investment for your own circumstances, please seek independent financial advice first.
Top features of Saxo’s account
Saxo’s strengths lie with its global access and trading platforms. Through its Stocks & Shares ISA, you have access to more than 11,000 eligible stocks, bonds, commodities and futures across 25 leading exchanges. For an experienced and confident investor, this opens up a world of opportunities.
You also have the choice of two comprehensive trading platforms: SaxoTraderGo or the professional grade SaxoTraderPRO. Available online and through a mobile app, here you will find a range of trading tools such as enhanced ticket trade (which reduces the number of clicks needed to place an order) and risk management features.
These risk management tools are what really stand out, as you can put in place account shields to protect yourself from a loss on your entire account value or custom margin alerts to monitor your position. So while Saxo is suited to a more independent trader, it has tools which you can utilise to help you to manage your risk.
Saxo’s commission prices
Saxo has three pricing tiers: Classic, Platinum and VIP. Pricing is also dependent on what exchange you are trading with.
So for UK exchanges, expect to pay £8 under the Classic pricing tier. This drops down to £7 under Platinum and £5 with VIP. As you trade more, you can expect to pay less.
With US exchanges the rates are $10, $7 and $3 respectively, and prices will vary for other global exchanges included in the ISA.
Fees you should know about
While there are no fees charged for holding an account with Saxo, you can expect some charges.
For example, if you only hold cash funds on your account, then you will be charged a £25 platform fee per quarter. This is applied on the first week of the following quarter month. However, you will not incur the platform fee if you are being charged a custody fee.
Saxo’s custody fee is 0.12% p.a. for Classic and Platinum accounts, and 0.08% for VIP accounts, with a minimum monthly fee of €10.
If you plan to place an order over the phone or via chat or email, then there is a €50 per order charge.
Finally, there is an exit fee of €50 per ISIN if you transfer stocks to an account outside Saxo.
Buying shares, ETFs and funds with a Saxo account
Saxo offers you a substantial range of shares and funds. You can find stocks, ETFs and bonds across 25 exchanges.
It doesn’t offer much support when it comes to choosing your investments. There are obviously the platform’s tools to utilise if you want, and digital support in the form of tutorial videos if you need some help.
But Saxo doesn’t appear to offer any sort of model portfolios or suggested investments based on your preferences. Therefore, this account is probably more suited to someone who knows what type of investments they want to buy.
Both of Saxo’s trading platforms are extensive, with a wealth of information and tools available to help you on your investment journey.
SaxoTraderGO has a range of trading features, such as enhanced trade ticket (which reduces the number of clicks needed to place an order) or its equity research tool (which analyses company fundamentals and analyst sentiment indicators).
Its dashboard includes watchlists, product overviews and positions. You can also build your own watchlist and subscribe to live prices in order to get real-time prices.
But it is its risk-management features that really stand out. No investment is without risk, but what Saxo tries to do with its platform is to give you tools you can use to alert you to risk and protect your investments. Its account shield feature acts as a stop loss on your entire account value. It also has stop orders to protect your positions from adverse market moves, and a margin breakdown that allows you to easily monitor the margin utilisation for each instrument.
Meanwhile, SaxoTraderPRO offers advanced trading features for the more experienced investor. These include algorithmic orders, a charting package and an option chain.
Saxo’s research offerings
Saxo’s research offering is comprehensive. You can expect curated content, SaxoStrats analysis, and live market updates and commentary from the sales team. Within its platform you can read Saxo Wire, which highlights the top news and movements across the markets. In addition to this, there are educational ‘how to guides’ and breakdowns of risk management, fundamental analysis and technical analysis.
Keep in mind that any investment information and expert opinion provided on Saxo’s website is not personal advice and is designed for investors who are happy making their own investment decisions. If you’re unsure about the suitability of an investment for your circumstances, you’ll want to seek out your own independent financial advice.
Things to watch out for
While Saxo’s Stocks and Shares ISA account offering is comprehensive, there may even be a bit too much information-overload for novice investors.
The main things to watch out for with this account is that there are no model portfolios or preference tools to help you pick your investments. So while there is an abundance of choice, you need to know what you want going into it.
Separately, while you have the ability to trade across several global markets, an ISA is an HMRC tax-wrapper. Therefore the account needs to be opened and funded in pound sterling. As a result, you may incur currency trading costs. As the ISA is cash products only, currency conversions will be charged on the purchase and sale at the mid FX spot, plus or minus 1%. You will also need to be aware that prices vary depending what exchange you are trading with.
Service and support
Under the standard pricing, there is an extensive digital library offering support of all areas of the platform and the account. There is also a support chat feature if you can’t find what you are looking for there.
But if you decide to opt for one of the premium trading tiers, then you can expect a more personalised service in the form of relationship managers and trading experts.
Is a Saxo account a good choice for you?
If you are a more experienced investor, who has the time to curate your portfolio and enjoys poring over stats, then Saxo could be a good choice.
Its substantial offering of eligible investments, coupled with the global reach of its platform, means that there are plenty of opportunities if you know what you are doing.
While its platform has lots of information, it’s not the easiest to use at first glance. And with the lack of model portfolios or investment tools to guide you, there is the potential to feel lost if you are a newbie investor.
However, its fees are competitive, and there are risk management tools in place to help those who know their way around a market. Therefore, it is probably more suited to someone who is confident and experienced at trading across a variety of exchanges.