Investing in stocks used to be rather inaccessible if you only had a small sum.
The fees were just too expensive and it’ll just eat into your returns.
However, the FinTech revolution has changed that. New services like robo-advisors and low cost brokerage firms have since emerged.
Here’s how Tiger Brokers, one of the newest brokerage firms, can help to start your investing journey.
Table of Contents
- What is Tiger Brokers?
- What are Tiger Brokers’ main features?
- How do I deposit and withdraw my funds from Tiger Brokers?
- How do I make a trade with Tiger Brokers?
- What are the fees to trade with Tiger Brokers?
- Is Tiger Brokers a custodian or CDP account?
- Is Tiger Brokers reliable and safe?
- What other features does Tiger Brokers have?
- How does Tiger Brokers compare with other brokerages?
- How do I create an account with Tiger Brokers? (Referral)
- What are the referral bonuses that I can receive? (Commission-free trades and stock vouchers)
What is Tiger Brokers?
Being one of the newest brokerage firms, Tiger Brokers is able to take advantage of the latest technologies. As such, they are able to provide a seamless experience when conducting trades, and at a lower cost as well.
Focusing on a mobile-first experience, Tiger Brokers was launched in Singapore in early 2020 to appeal to mobile-savvy millennials. The Singapore arm of Tiger Brokers is headed by Eng Thiam Choon.
What are Tiger Brokers’ main features?
Here are the main features of Tiger Brokers:
6 different markets available
Tiger Brokers offer you 6 different markets that you can trade in.
- Singapore (SGX)
- US (4 different exchanges)
- Hong Kong (HKEX)
- China (SZSE and SSE)
- Australia (ASX)
You are able to perform options trading as well.
You can view all of the markets in the ‘Quotes‘ tab.
It may not be the most extensive list of markets. However, Tiger Brokers does provide you with the more popular options.
5 types of US exchanges to trade in
Here are the 5 US exchanges that you can trade:
- New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)
- Nasdaq Stock Market (NASDAQ)
- American Stock Exchange (AMEX)
- Pink Sheet Exchange (PK)
- Over-The-Counter (OTC)
You are unable to trade in the London Stock Exchange (LSE)
You are able to view market data on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) using the app. However, Tiger Brokers does not allow you to make any trades in the LSE.
As such, you are unable to buy the IWDA ETF, which is one of the more popular ETFs on the LSE.
3 different accounts
When you open an account with Tiger Brokers, there are 3 accounts that you’ll have:
#1 Live Account
The Prime Account is where you will do all of your actual trading.
Here are some things that you can see in the ‘Trade‘ tab:
- The total value of your assets
- Your Profit or Loss amount
- The value of your stocks and cash available
- Your holdings and daily orders
This is the ‘central hub’ where you can perform any functions related to trading.
Do remember to deposit funds into your account first before starting to trade!
If you wish to perform margin trading, there is an option for you to upgrade your account to a Margin Account.
A margin account allows you to perform:
- Margin trading
- Short selling
There is no limit on the number or frequency of your T+0 trades.
Margin trading has lots of risks. If you are a beginner investor, I would not recommend you to create this account.
#2 Paper Account
If you are unsure about trading with real money, you can use the Paper Account instead.
This is a demo account that allows you to familiarise yourself with how Tiger Brokers work.
You will be given $10,000 USD and one Apple stock to start your virtual trading.
However, you are only able to trade US and HK stocks using your Paper Account!
You can easily switch between your Paper Account and your Prime Account.
The 2 accounts do look rather similar. As such I would suggest to double check which account you’re using before making any trades!
#3 Fund Mall Account
Besides being able to trade on the markets, you can purchase mutual funds as well on Tiger Brokers.
After choosing the fund that you wish to purchase, you are given 2 options to do so.
1. Subscribe to the fund
You can choose the amount of units you wish to purchase.
Do take note of the subscription fee!
2. Purchase a regular savings plan (RSP)
Tiger Brokers only offers a regular savings plan for funds as of now.
You can choose the amount you wish to purchase and the frequency.
No fractional shares
Unlike some brokerages, Tiger Brokers does not allow you to purchase fractional shares.
A fractional share is a portion of one full share.
For example, if a share costs $100 and you can only invest $10, you will only receive 0.1 units of that share.
Tiger Brokers only allows you to purchase the minimum unit size. This depends on the market that you wish to invest in.
For example, the Singapore Exchange (SGX) has a minimum unit size of 100.
This means that you can only buy 100 units of that stock, and subsequent multiples of 100 units. Here are the lot sizes for each market:
|Market||Minimum Unit Size|
|HK||Min 100 shares |
(depends on stock price)
(depending on product)
You are unable to make full use of the entire amount that you have in your Prime Account.
This is something you’ll need to take note of as some of your spare cash may just be lying around.
Reasonable exchange rate
Tiger Brokers allows you to exchange currencies in the app itself.
The good thing is that Tiger Brokers does not charge you any fees for making a currency exchange!
Here are the 5 different currencies that you can trade:
- CNH (Chinese Yuan)
Tiger Brokers has a currency spread of 0.3-0.5%. This gives a pretty competitive exchange rate compared to other brokers.
Some of the stocks that you own may issue dividends. These dividends will be credited straight to your Prime Account.
Depending on the market that you’re trading in, you may incur a dividend withholding tax.
|HK, SG, China||0%|
This tax will be deducted before the dividends are credited to your account. After receiving your dividends, you can choose to either:
- Reinvest your dividends
- Withdraw them to your bank account
If you do not have enough funds to invest, you may borrow from Tiger Brokers as leverage.
However, the leverage charges are quite high.
You may accidentally go into leverage if you do not have enough funds in that certain currency.
As such, I would advise you to exchange your SGD to the currency of the market first before you start trading.
Tiger Brokers only supports cash currently
One disadvantage is that Tiger Brokers only allows you to invest your cash. You are unable to invest either your CPF or SRS funds with this broker.
This is such a waste as the trading commissions are really low! Hopefully they will be able to add this feature in the future.
How do I deposit and withdraw my funds from Tiger Brokers?
Tiger Brokers has a rather easy process to deposit and withdraw funds from your Prime Account.
#1 Depositing funds
To start trading with Tiger Brokers, you’ll ned to deposit funds into your Prime Account. There is no minimum amount that you are required to deposit into your Prime Account.
Tiger Brokers may charge you a fee for depositing funds into your Prime Account. Here are the fees that they will charge:
The safest will be to deposit SGD from a Singapore bank account. That way, you will not incur any fees when you deposit your funds.
After choosing your bank account, here’s a step-by-step guide to depositing funds:
#1 Go to ‘Trade → Deposit‘
#2 Choose the currency you wish to deposit
#3 Transfer the money to Tiger Brokers’ account
You will need to transfer your funds to Tiger Brokers’ DBS account.
You are only able to deposit funds from bank accounts that are under your own name.
It is possible for you to transfer your funds via PayNow by using Tiger Brokers’ UEN.
#4 Inform Tiger Brokers about your funds transfer
To speed up the deposit process, you will need to fill up this form below.
Tiger Brokers will then acknowledge that they have received your deposit request.
#6 Receive a notification on your successful deposit
When your funds have been deposited into your Prime Account, you will receive a notification via the app and email.
I deposited my funds on a Tuesday afternoon. Within 2 hours, my funds were deposited into my Prime Account.
#2 Withdrawing funds
You can choose to withdraw funds from your Prime Account too.
Based on the bank account and currency you are withdrawing to, you may incur some withdrawal fees. Here are the fees that Tiger Brokers charges:
The safest would be to withdraw your funds to a DBS / POSB account!
Here’s a guide to withdrawing your funds:
#1 Go to ‘Trade → More’
#2 Add a receiving bank account
If you are withdrawing funds for the first time, you will need to add the details of the bank account that you’d like to withdraw to.
#3 Select your withdrawal amount and reason
#4 Email your bank statement to Tiger Brokers
If this is the first time you are withdrawing funds, you will need to provide proof that this account belongs to you.
After sending my first withdrawal request, the funds were transferred to my account the next day.
How do I make a trade with Tiger Brokers?
Before making any trades, you will need to first install the Tiger Authenticator app.
This adds an extra layer of security before you make any buy / sell orders.
After you install this app, here’s a step-by-step guide on making trades using Tiger Brokers:
#1 Go to ‘Trade → Trade‘
#2 Enter your OTP from the Tiger Authenticator app
#3 Select the stock you wish to trade
#4 Select the number of units you wish to trade
For this example, I purchased 100 units of Sheng Siong.
Disclaimer: This does not constitute as investment advice
Tiger Brokers does not show you the fees you incur before you place the order. However, you are able to view the estimated fees by tapping on the icon beside the ‘Place Buy Order‘ as circled above.
For SGX-listed stocks, the commissions will be 0.12% of your trade value. The minimum of SGD$2.88 has been waived until 31 December 2020.
#5 Review order
You can review the order that you’ve made.
The holdings will be credited once the order goes through. If you do not have enough money to make the trade, you will get this error message:
There are 3 things you will need to do to prevent incurring leverage:
- Exchange your other funds to the stock’s currency
- Deposit more funds
- Upgrade to a Margin Account
Tiger Brokers allows you to perform pre-market and aftermarket trading in the US markets. Here are the US market trading times in SGT (GMT +8):
You are able to buy and sell your stocks before the actual US markets open at 2130 (GMT +8).
To take part in pre- and aftermarket trading, you can tap ‘Allow’ on the ‘Fill outside RTH’ field.
RTH stands for regular trading hours.
However, there are some things to note if you wish to do pre-market trading:
- There may be reduced liquidity
- There may be increased volatility
Pre-market trading is very risky, so I would not recommend it if you are a beginner investor!
What are the fees to trade with Tiger Brokers?
Here are the fees that Tiger Brokers charges:
You will incur a trading fee for every buy or sell order that you make. Here are the commissions that Tiger Brokers charges, based on the market that you’re buying in:
|US||0.01 USD/share||1.99 USD/trade|
|HK||0.06% * trade value||15 HKD/trade|
|SG||0.08% * trade value||No minimum (until 31 Dec 2020)|
2.88 SGD/trade (after 31 Dec 2020)
|China||0.06% * trade value||15 CNH/trade|
|AUS||0.1% * trade value||8 AUD/trade|
You may want to take note of the minimum fee! The fee can be pretty hefty, especially if you trade a small amount of units.
For example, you may buy one US stock for 50USD. Even though the fee is 0.01 USD/share, you will need to pay the minimum of 1.99USD.
You will be paying a commission of almost 4% of your trade amount!
Nevertheless, Tiger Brokers has one of the most affordable fees compared to other brokerages.
Additional fees charged by exchange
Other than the fees that Tiger Brokers charges, you will incur additional fees. This depends on which exchange you are making the trade.
For example, SGX will charge an additional 0.04% on your trade value.
You can find the full breakdown of the fees that you’ll incur on Tiger Brokers’ website.
Deposit and withdrawal fees
Tiger Brokers may charge you deposit and withdrawal fees.
This depends on:
- The currency you’re depositing or withdrawing
- The amount you’re depositing or withdrawing
- The account that you’re depositing into or withdrawing from
The safest would be to deposit or withdraw in SGD and use a Singapore bank account!
No custody, inactivity and account maintenance fees
Unlike other brokerages, Tiger Brokers does not have any other platform fees.
This is great especially if you are a buy and hold investor. You are not pressured to make any trades just so that you do not ned to incur any fees. As such, you will not really incur other fees besides the trading commissions.
Is Tiger Brokers a custodian or CDP account?
When you trade with Tiger Brokers, your shares will be under their custodian account. Tiger Brokers is not linked to your central depository (CDP) account. As such, you are unable to transfer your shares from CDP to Tiger Brokers and vice versa.
This makes Tiger Brokers very attractive as:
- The commission fees are much lower than buying stocks with your CDP account
- No custodian fees are charged by Tiger Brokers
The only drawback is that you are unable to attend the AGMs for any Singapore stocks that you own!
Is Tiger Brokers reliable and safe?
Being a new Chinese company, it is understandable that you might be wary of this company. However, here are some reasons why you can trust Tiger Brokers:
#1 Tiger Brokers is licensed by the MAS
Tiger Brokers has a Capital Markets Services (CMS) license issued by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).
This CMS license requires Tiger Brokers to set up a custodian account for their clients’ funds. This ensures that Tiger Brokers’ funds are separate from your funds.
For Singapore stocks that you buy, they will be under a custodian account in DBS.
Even if Tiger Brokers closes down, they cannot touch your funds.
#2 Tiger Brokers has a strong backing
Tiger Brokers is backed by 3 reputable names:
- Interactive Brokers
- Wall Street investment guru Jim Rogers
Having this support should give you some reassurance that Tiger Brokers is a reputable company.
#3 Tiger Brokers has substantial funding
Tiger Brokers has received considerable funding.
In their Series C financing, they managed to raise $80 million!
Eventually, Tiger Brokers’ parent company, UP Fintech Holding Limited was listed on the NASDAQ (TIGR) in 2019.
With this substantial funding, it does show how investors are confident in this company!
What other features does Tiger Brokers have?
Tiger Brokers has a whole bunch of other features as well:
Tiger Brokers has an extensive profile page for each stock.
Here are 4 features you can view in each profile:
#2 Company News
#3 Stock Analysis
#4 Company Information
This information is pretty overwhelming for me. However, I believe it will be really useful if you’re a frequent trader and can view the various metrics.
You will receive news alerts from time to time. Due to migration issues, some of the notifications may appear in Chinese.
Tiger Brokers allows you to participate in initial public offering (IPO) subscriptions. You are only able to participate in US and HK stock IPOs.
The Ant IPO has been one of the most anticipated IPOs in history. Being listed in Hong Kong, you are able to participate in the IPO via Tiger Brokers. However, if you are a retail investor, you will need to invest a minimum of SGD$200,000!
Tiger Brokers has a stock screener with some parameters that you can choose from. However, it is rather hard for you to find the screener. Here’s how you can find and use it.
#1 Go to ‘Discover → Customise Filters’
#2 Select your parameters
Unfortunately, you are only able to screen either US or China stocks.
#3 View the results of your screen
The screener has rather limited parameters to choose from. If you’d like a more comprehensive screener, you can consider using the one from StocksCafe.
Extensive Stock Analysis
You can choose to view technical analysis of stocks too. Tiger Brokers provides extensive analysis in their ‘Discover‘ tab.
There are lots of features that will help you out if you’re a frequent trader!
If you’d like to backtest your strategy, you can consider trying out the PyInvesting platform as well.
Ace Trader promotion
If you are a frequent trader, you may want to consider this Ace Trader promotion. From now till 22nd July 2021, you are able to receive certain benefits if you frequently trade on Tiger Brokers.
Depending on the number of trades you make within the past 3 months, here are some privileges you will receive:
This are pretty attractive benefits if you do frequent trading!
Tiger Brokers has a desktop app that you can download from their website.
It provides you with all the same features as the mobile app.
I feel that it might be a better platform to use if you’re a frequent trader. There are tons of information that you can obtain just by glancing at one screen.
Overall, the app is really neat and polished, and I had a good experience using it.
Website only allows you to edit your profile
Tiger Brokers allows you to login to their website too. However, you are only able to change your account details on their website.
How does Tiger Brokers compare with other brokerages?
Here is how Tiger Brokers compares against other brokerages you can sign up for.
FSMOne offers a wide variety of products such as regular savings plans, cash management and managed portfolios. However, you can only invest in SGX, HKEX and the US markets. Furthermore, FSMOne charges a higher minimum trade commission compared to Tiger Brokers.
You can read my analysis of how FSMOne compares to Tiger Brokers to help you decide on the better brokerage for you.
Tiger Brokers is the first trading account that I have opened, and here are the pros and cons:
|Fast sign up process||Information can be overwhelming |
for beginner investors
|Deposits and withdrawals |
are processed quickly
|Trading may be |
|Access to many |
|Issues with migration |
of platform to English
|Affordable and very competitive |
|Only able to invest cash, |
and not CPF or SRS
|Extensive stock information||Unable to trade in the |
London Stock Exchange
|Easy trading process|
|Attractive rewards |
for frequent traders
|Under strict regulation by MAS, making it |
a rather safe firm to invest with
Tiger Brokers is a great brokerage service that gives you access to most of the popular markets. It may have some issues with the user interface, however the app is sleek and easy to use.
My main concern is that the trading process can be too easy. Moreover, there is so much information on the app that you may be tempted to check your stocks everyday. As such, it is very important to understand what you’re investing in, before you make the trade!
How do I create an account with Tiger Brokers? (Referral)
The signup process is really fast, and you can create an account within 20 minutes. Here’s all key things that you’ll need to do:
#1 Set your login details
#2 Use MyInfo to sign up
#3 Customer Account Review (CAR)
To pass the review, you will need to fulfil either of the 4 categories:
- Investment Experience
- Customer Qualification
- Work Experience
- SGX Online Education Programme
If you do not fulfil any of the first 3 criteria, you will need to pass the SGX programme.
#4 Fill up your W-8BEN Form
To trade in the US markets, you are required to fill up the W-8BEN form. This is a requirement by the IRS. Other brokerages may take a few business days to process your W-8BEN form.
However, the process is automated for Tiger Brokers. Most of the details have already been filled in for you. All you will need to do is to fill up some fields.
This allows you to start trading immediately once your account is approved!
#5 Submit your application
Your application will be reviewed.
Once you’ve been approved, you will receive an SMS.
You are now able to deposit your money and start trading!
What are the referral bonuses that I can receive? (Commission-free trades and stock vouchers)
If you signed up using my referral link, you are eligible for some rewards. These rewards will only be valid until 31 December 2020. You can view and claim your rewards by going to ‘Me → Promotions & Rewards‘.
Here are 4 bonuses that you can receive:
#1 Registration Reward
When you register for a Tiger Brokers Account, you will receive Level 2 Data for US stocks for 30 days.
I feel this information may be more useful if you’re a frequent trader.
#2 Account Opening Reward
When you successfully open your Prime Account, you will receive 5 commission-free trades!
Here are the 4 things that you can purchase:
- Any HK Stock
- Any US Stock
- Singapore Stocks
You will still need to pay the commission first. The commission should be refunded to you on the next working day.
#3 Funding Reward
Depending on the size of your first initial deposit, you are eligible for these stock vouchers:
|Initial Deposit||Receive A Stock Voucher Worth|
|≥ SGD$2,000||SGD 30|
|≥ SGD$5,000||SGD 50|
|≥ SGD$10,000||SGD 70|
|≥ SGD$30,000||SGD 100|
A stock voucher allows you to offset your trade with the voucher’s value. You will first have to make the order, before receiving the rebate credited to you. If your transaction amount is less than the stock voucher’s value, you will only receive the transaction amount as a rebate.
This promotion only applies to your initial deposit. If you deposit less than $2k at first, you will not receive any stock voucher!
#4 Step-Up Rewards
You will receive these rewards based on the number of friends that you’ve successfully referred. Here are the stock vouchers that you can receive:
|Number of People Invited||Extra Stock Voucher Receivable|