Brokers Invest

moomoo vs Saxo – Which Broker Is Better?

moomoo vs Saxo

Last updated on June 13th, 2021

This article contains affiliate links. You can read more about these links in my Editorial Guidelines.

moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) is one of the newest trading platforms to have entered Singapore.

Meanwhile, Saxo has been in the market for quite a while.

When choosing between both brokers, which one should you go with?

Here’s what you need to know.

The difference between moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) and Saxo

moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) charges lower fees compared to Saxo if you intend to trade in the SG, US and HK markets. However, Saxo offers a wider variety of products on their platform, such as mutual funds, regular savings plans and managed portfolios.

Here is an in-depth comparison between these 2 platforms:

Type of Products Available

Both brokerages offer different kinds of products.

Here is what moomoo offers you:

  1. Stocks
  2. ETFs
  3. REITs
  4. ADRs
  5. Options
  6. Futures
  7. Warrants and CBBC

Meanwhile, Saxo provides a wider variety of products on their platform. This includes:

  1. Stocks
  2. Bonds
  3. ETFs
  4. Mutual funds
  5. Forex
  6. Futures
  7. Commodities
  8. Options (Forex and Listed)
  9. Managed portfolios
  10. Regular Savings Plan

Saxo’s managed portfolio is something similar to a robo-advisor. It chooses to invest your money into different funds from:

  1. LionGlobal
  2. BlackRock
  3. Morningstar
  4. Brown Advisory
  5. Nasdaq

You can also choose to invest in some of these portfolios via a regular savings plan too.

If you are looking for a platform that provides more investing options, Saxo will be better for you.

However if you are just looking at buying stocks and ETFs, then it will not really which platform you choose!

Types of Exchanges Available

moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) allows you to trade in 3 exchanges.

Meanwhile, Saxo offers you 23 different exchanges to trade in!

Here are some of the exchanges that you are able to trade on using both platforms:

moomooSaxo
SGX
HKEX
US
ASX (Australia)
SZSE and SSE (China)
LSE (UK)
Bursa Malaysia
SWX (Switzerland)
TSE (Japan)

In terms of the availability of exchanges, Saxo provides a far wider variety!

The one that most Singaporeans may be interested in is the London Stock Exchange (LSE). You are able to buy Irish-domiciled ETFs that help to reduce your taxes in 2 ways:

  1. Reduce your dividend withholding tax (30% to 15%)
  2. Reduce the estate taxes that you incur

However, moomoo still has many of the popular exchanges, such as US exchanges and the HKEX.

Fees

The fees that you incur are one of the most important factors that affect your returns.

You’ll need to consider 2 types of fees that you’ll pay each broker:

  1. Trading commission
  2. Platform fee

Here are the fees that you’ll incur with both brokers:

MarketmoomooSaxo
SGX0.03% * trade value
Min $0.99/trade
(commission)

+ 0.03% * trade value
Min SGD $1.50
(platform fee)
0.08% * trade value
Min 5 SGD
HKEX0.03* trade value
Min 3 HKD/trade
(commission)

+ 15 HKD/order
(platform fee)
0.15% * trade value
Min 90 HKD
US0.0049/share
Min USD 0.99/order
(commission)

+ USD 0.005/share
Min USD 1/order
(platform fee)
0.06% * trade value
Min $4 USD

Across all 3 exchanges, moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) offers the cheaper commissions.

Furthermore, you are able to make commission-free trades for 180 days if you sign up using my referral link.

Fees incurred for trading in respective exchanges

On top of the fees that you pay for each platform, you will be charged exchange-specific fees as well. These fees are the same across both brokerages.

For example, you will be charged an additional 0.04% by SGX for each trade that you make.

This includes:

  1. Trading fee (0.0075% * transaction amount)
  2. Clearing fee (0.0325% * transaction amount)

There may be some fees that you’ll need to pay, depending on the exchange you’re trading in.

Custodian fees

Saxo charges a 0.12% custodian fee for any stocks that you own that are not from the SGX.

Saxo Custody Fee

This fee is calculated daily, based on the total amount of assets that you hold with Saxo. The fee will then be charged to you on a monthly basis.

This custody fee can really eat into your returns!

Meanwhile, moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) does not charge a custodian fee.

Currency conversion fee

Saxo also charges a currency conversion fee, if you exchange your SGD to a foreign currency.

The fees that you pay depend on how you exchange your currency:

Type of ExchangeFees
Cash Products0.75%
Account Transfer0.30%

If you make a trade in a foreign currency with your SGD, you will be charged 0.75%.

However if you make the same trade from your sub-account, you are only charged 0.3%.

These additional fees will eat into your returns as well!

moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) does not charge any currency conversion fees when you are exchanging your SGD to another currency.

Neither broker charges an inactivity fee

Both moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) and Saxo do not have any inactivity fees. As such, you do not need to pressure yourself in making a trade to avoid these fees!

moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) has a more attractive price structure

If you are looking to buy stocks in the SG / US / HK markets, moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) offers a more affordable pricing structure.

You pay cheaper commissions on this platform. Furthermore, you do not incur any custodian or foreign conversion fees.

Exchange Rates

If you wish to trade in overseas stocks, you will have to exchange your SGD for a foreign currency.

For moomoo (powered by FUTU SG), this can be done in their app.

Moomoo Currency Exchange

For Saxo, it is a bit more complicated.

Similar to moomoo (powered by FUTU SG), you can make a deposit into your account in SGD.

Remember if you make a trade in a foreign currency directly from your SGD, you will incur a 0.70% fee!

To reduce the currency conversion fees, you will first need to create a sub-account. This sub-account is denominated in the foreign currency that you wish to trade in.

Saxo Create Sub Account

This is similar to creating different Securities Settlement Accounts with Standard Chartered.

After that, you are able to transfer your SGD into the foreign currency!

Saxo has slightly more favourable exchange rates

Here is the exchange rate between SGD and USD at around the same time for Moomoo,

Moomoo USD to SGD Rate vs Saxo

and that for Saxo.

Saxo USD to SGD Rate vs Moomoo

Saxo seems to be providing a slightly better rate compared to moomoo (powered by FUTU SG). This means that you are able to get more USD for the same SGD that you transfer.

However, the difference in the exchange rate will only be significant if you are trading a large sum of money.

Pre and aftermarket trading

Both moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) and Saxo allows you to conduct pre and aftermarket trading on its platform for US markets. Here are the timings for the 3 periods in Singapore time (GMT +8).

Trading PeriodTiming (GMT +8)
Premarket1600-2130
Regular Trading2130-0400
Aftermarket0400-0800

To enable pre and aftermarket trading, you will need to enable the ‘Fill Outside RTH‘ option on the trading page for moomoo (powered by FUTU SG).

Moomoo Fill Outside RTH

For Saxo, you can only perform premarket trades using the SaxoGO/PRO platforms. You can’t use SaxoInvestor to make the trade.

App and Platform Experience

The user experience on the brokerage platform may help you to decide on a broker.

moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) has a good user experience overall. It is rather similar to Tiger Brokers, so you will be quite familiar with it if you have a Tiger Brokers account too.

Moomoo App Interface

moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) has a desktop platform too.

Moomoo Trading Desktop App

While these features are really useful for frequent traders, I do find that the features can be rather overwhelming if you are a beginner investor.

Saxo has multiple platforms

There are 3 different platforms that you can use on Saxo:

  1. SaxoInvestor
  2. SaxoTraderGO
  3. SaxoTraderPRO

Both SaxoInvestor and TraderGO are available on the web browser. However, for TraderPRO, you will need to install a desktop app.

The type of platform that you use depends on the type of investor you are:

PlatformSuitable For
SaxoInvestorEveryday investors
TraderGOTraders
TraderPROSerious traders

Here’s how SaxoInvestor looks like,

SaxoInvestor Web Platform

and TraderGO,

Saxo TraderGO Platform

as well as TraderPRO.

Saxo TraderPRO Platform

Both SaxoInvestor and TraderGO have their mobile apps as well.

SaxoInvestor vs TraderGO Mobile App

Both brokers’ platforms seem pretty sleek and easy to use.

Ease of Opening Account

Both FUTU SG and Saxo use MyInfo during the signup process.

MyInfo SignUp1

If you wish to trade in the US markets, you are required to sign a W-8 BEN form to declare that you are a non-US citizen.

For Saxo, you are required to sign an online W-8BEN form during the sign-up process.

Saxo W 8BEN Form

Once your account has been approved, you can start trading in US stocks right away.

For moomoo (powered by FUTU SG), you do not have to sign the W-8 BEN form. However, you are required to fill up a questionnaire and sign at the bottom of the page.

Moomoo Sign At End Of Sign Up

The account opening process for both platforms is rather smooth. Your account should be opened within the day!

Deposits and Withdrawal

Both online brokerages are pre-funded accounts. This means that you will have to fund your account on either platform first before you can start trading.

No minimum sum to maintain

Both online brokerages do not have a minimum sum to maintain in your account. This is great if you only have a small sum to invest!

You can only use both FAST and DDA for moomoo (powered by FUTU SG)

For moomoo (powered by FUTU SG), you can make deposits by either FAST or direct debit (either DBS or POSB).

Moomoo Deposit Options DDA and FAST

When I deposited my funds with them, it took a few hours before I received an email that moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) received my funds.

Moomoo FUTU Deposit Notice

However if you have a POSB or DBS bank account, you should choose to use the direct debit (DDA) option.

You will be able to deposit your funds into your trading account in around 15 minutes!

You’ll need to transfer your funds to Saxo’s bank account first

For Saxo, you can transfer your funds in a variety of ways. This includes:

  1. FAST
  2. PayNow
  3. MEPS
  4. Wire transfer

The easiest way to deposit your funds will be either via FAST or PayNow.

Don’t forget to insert the unique deposit code in the ‘reference’ box when you’re making the transfer!

The deposit will also take a few hours to be processed.

Withdrawals may take a few business days

When you want to withdraw your funds from either platform, it may take a few business days before the funds reach your bank account.

The waiting time is around the same for either platform.

Type of Custodian Account

When you trade your assets on both brokerage firms, your assets will be under a custodian account.

moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) has a CMS License

The moomoo app is a trading platform offered by moomoo Inc., which is a subsidiary of Futu Holdings Limited.

moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) is licensed with the MAS under the Capital Markets License.

However, they do not disclose who their custodians are.

Nevertheless, they still should follow similar practices of keeping your assets separate from theirs.

In the unfortunate event that FUTU SG closes down, they will be unable to touch your assets.

Saxo also has the Capital Markets License

Saxo is also regulated by the MAS under the Capital Markets License.

In the event that Saxo goes bankrupt, your assets will be kept separately from Saxo’s.

Saxo has also been operating in Singapore since 2006. This should give you the reassurance that Saxo is here to stay for the long term.

Both accounts do not allow CDP linkage

Since both moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) and Saxo are custodian accounts, they are unable to be linked to your CDP account.

If you wish to transfer your shares from a CDP-linked broker to either broker, you would have to do a manual share transfer by contacting support.

Verdict

Here is a comparison between moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) and Saxo:

moomooSaxo
Type of
Products Available
Stocks
REITs
ETFs
Options
Margin
OTCs
Warrants
and CBBC
Futures
Stocks
ETFs
Mutual Funds
Options
Managed Portfolio
Regular Savings Plan
Number of
Exchanges Available
3 countries23 countries
Trading
Commissions
Lower for US /
HK / SG markets
Higher for US /
HK / SG markets
Custody FeeNone0.12% p.a.
Currency
Conversion Fee
None0.3-0.7%
Exchange RateComparableComparable
Pre and
Aftermarket Funding
PresentPresent
PlatformsMobile
and Desktop
Mobile
and Desktop
Ease of
Opening Account
SimilarSimilar
Funding
Account Speed
A few hours
~ 15 minutes
if using DDA
A few hours
Custodian
Account
Did not mentionUnder Saxo

So which broker should you choose?

Choose moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) for cheaper fees in the SG / US / HK markets

While moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) only allows you to buy stocks in 3 countries, they offer cheaper fees compared to Saxo.

Furthermore, you are not charged any custodian or currency conversion fees, which helps to reduce your costs.

If you are intending to buy stocks in these 3 countries, moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) will be the better option for you.

moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) is offering an attractive promotion too, where you are able to receive perks such as:

  • 1 free Apple (AAPL) share
  • 180 days commission-free trading for US, HK & SG Markets

Choose Saxo for access to more markets and products

While Saxo charges higher fees, you have access to many more markets, such as:

  1. London Stock Exchange
  2. Tokyo Stock Exchange
  3. Bursa Malaysia

Furthermore, you are able to buy mutual funds and regular savings plans on Saxo.

If you want to have a platform with a wider variety of investment products, Saxo will be more suitable for you.

Conclusion

Both brokerages do have their advantages. Ultimately, it depends on what you are looking for in a broker, such as:

  1. The fees that you’ll have to pay
  2. The exchanges you can trade in
  3. The types of products you can purchase

If you decide to use both brokers, you can track your portfolios from these 2 brokerages using StocksCafe.

👉🏻 Referral Deals

If you are interested in signing up for any of the products mentioned above, you can check them out below!

moomoo Referral (Free Pfizer, Haidilao Shares and Commission Free Trades for 180 Days)

If you are interested in signing up for a moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) account, you can use my referral link.

Here are some of the rewards you can receive (From 2 Aug 2021):

  1. Free Pfizer (PFE) Share
  2. Commission-free trading for 180 days (SGX, HKEX and US markets)
  3. Level 2 market data for US stocks and Level 1 market data for SGX

To receive these bonuses, here are the steps you’ll need to do:

#1 Sign up for a Moomoo account

You’ll need to use my referral link to sign up for a moomoo (powered by FUTU SG) account.

Moomoo Sign Up For An Account

After opening your account, you will be able to unlock 2 treasure boxes.

Here are the rewards you can earn with each box:

Treasure Box 1Treasure Box 2
180 days unlimited commission-
free trades (US / HK / SG)
1 free Pfizer (PFE) share
1 free Pfizer (PFE) share5 free Haidilao (6862) shares

A 30 day countdown timer will start once your FUTU SG securities account is opened.

#2 Open Treasure Box 1

To open the first treasure box, you’ll need to complete the following tasks:

  1. Follow 1 friend
  2. Post 1 comment
  3. Open a FUTU SG securities account
  4. Deposit SGD 2700 / USD 2000 / HKD 16,000 into your account

Here are the rewards that you’ll receive:

  1. 180 days unlimited commission-free trades for the US stock market, HK stock market and SG stock market
  2. 1 free Pfizer (PFE) share

#3 Open Treasure Box 2

Here’s what you need to do to open the second treasure box:

  1. Watch a ‘Learn To Trade’ video
  2. Complete 3 trades in the US market
  3. Complete 3 trades in the HK market

Here are the rewards that you’ll receive:

  1. 1 free Pfizer (PFE) share
  2. 5 free Haidilao (6862) shares

You can only unlock this second treasure box after you have successfully unlocked the first treasure box.

To learn more, you can view more about this promotion on the FUTU SG website.

Saxo Referral (Earn $100-$250 in cash)

If you are interested in creating a Saxo trading account, you can take part in the referral program.

Here’s are the rewards that you can receive from this program:

ActionReward
Fund ≥ SGD $3,000 and
make ≥ 3 qualifying trades
SGD $100
Fund ≥ SGD $100,000 and
make ≥ 3 qualifying trades
SGD $250

The 3 qualifying trades that you need to make have to be on margin products, such as:

  1. CFDs
  2. FX
  3. Futures / Forwards
  4. Options

The process is quite different from other referral programmes, so you can contact me for the next steps for the referral!

You can find out more about the referral program on Saxo’s website.


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