Thinkorswim, the trading platform offered by TD Ameritrade, will no longer be available to retail Singapore investors starting December 1, 2023. As a result, current thinkorswim retail clients need to find a good alternative for their investment portfolios.
While transferring to a new broker can be a daunting experience, this article will help make the transition as smooth as possible. This post will also be useful to new Singapore retail clients looking to open a brokerage account, regardless of whether they have used Thinkorswim in the past.
In this article, we’ll help you understand if ThinkorSwim still works in Singapore, and provide a couple of alternatives worth looking into!
Is there any way to use ThinkorSwim with another brokerage other than TD Ameritrade?
No, thinkorswim is only available at TD Ameritrade (which will close soon in Singapore).
Action list for ThinkorSwim clients
TD Ameritrade has a dedicated website to help retail Singapore investors close their accounts. Unless you plan on becoming an accredited investor, here is what you can expect:
- 27 October 2023 – a monthly maintenance fee of $50 starts being charged (each month you delay opening a new brokerage account, you lose $50!).
- 1 December 2023 – your account becomes restricted, meaning you cannot open positions or deposit money. You can still close your positions, though.
- 4 December 2023 – TD Ameritrade may liquidate margin positions to bring accounts to a zero or positive cash balance.
As you can see from the list above, the sooner you open a new brokerage account to transfer your investment funds, the better! Let’s delve deeper into the alternatives you can consider.
Thinkorswim alternatives in Singapore
While thinkorswim is a unique trading platform, many of its functionalities are widely available on other trading platforms. Below, we will present two solid alternatives accessible to Singapore residents:
Thinkorswim Singapore Alternatives
#1 Trader Workstation (IBKR GlobalTrader)
Trader Workstation at a glance
Trader Workstation (TWS), the proprietary trading platform of Interactive Brokers, is one of the most innovative trading platforms developed by a brokerage firm. It includes two sub-sets: the “TWS Mosaic”, which displays a fully customisable workspace, and the “Classic TWS”, where you can find more complex/advanced tools for more experienced traders.
You get comprehensive order management, technical charts, watchlists, and other portfolio tools in a single view. You can organise your trading activity by asset classes and, at the same time, keep up to date with relevant market news impacting the markets. Not to mention the critical financial information on thousands of companies from Reuters Worldwide Fundamentals.
Interactive Brokers also offers a web-based alternative called “Client Portal”, a “light” version of TWS, which lets you keep track of your portfolio performance and other essential features with few constraints. The same goes for its mobile app (“IBKR GlobalTrader”), which lets you check every piece of information on the go.
SaxoTraderGO at a glance
Features three platforms for trading: SaxoInvestor, SaxoTraderGO, and SaxoTraderPRO. Assuming that most people visiting this page have average knowledge of financial markets, we will focus on the middle one: SaxoTraderGO, which, by the way, is the most popular consumer-facing trading platform of the broker.
SaxoTraderGO is an award-winning web-based platform equipped with crucial features: fundamental and technical analysis tools, an extensive charting package, performance analysis, a comprehensive account overview, and a user-friendly interface. It allows you to synchronise every piece of information with the mobile app.
You will have access to a comprehensive all-in-one screen where you can manage your investments from a wide range of asset classes, currencies, and countries. The financial products offered in SaxoTraderGO are the same as in SaxoTraderPRO: FX, FX Options, CFDs, stocks, ETFs, futures, listed options and bonds, bond mutual funds and commodities.
Interactive Brokers vs Saxo Bank
Now that we have outlined the capabilities offered by each of the trading platforms, let’s compare how the two brokers stack up:
|Broker||Minimum Deposit||Products||Stock commission, US||Regulators|
|Interactive Brokers||$0||Stocks, Options, Futures, ETFs, Currencies, Structured Products, Metals, Indices, Bonds, and Mutual Funds.||USD 0.0035 per share with a minimum USD 0.35||FINRA, SIPC, SEC, CFTC, IIROC, FCA, CBI, AFSL, SFC, SEBI, MAS, MNB|
|Saxo Bank||$2,000 (varies between countries)||Crypto, Forex, CFDs, Stocks, Commodities, Futures, Options, ETFs, Bonds, and Mutual Funds.||USD 0.02 per share with a minimum of USD 10.00||ASIC, FSA, FCA, SFC, MAS, FINMA, DFSA|
Interactive Brokers (IBKR) is a great option for retail investors interested in trading international stocks, ETFs, bonds, futures, options, and even penny stocks. It is ideal for beginners or professionals looking for a large number of instruments and a secure broker.
On the downside, if you are new to investing, the platform might be a bit complicated with too many buttons and features. Furthermore, Interactive Brokers does not allow you to invest in Crypto. You can read our IBKR review and check IBKR’s website for more information.
Saxo Bank has a product offering very similar to IBKR, with Crypto standing out as a differentiating factor. SaxoTraderGO’s functionalities arguably make it more suited to sophisticated investors who do not mind the slightly higher trading fees. Saxo Bank also has a dedicated website for funding details for Singapore residents.
You can read our dedicated Saxo Bank vs Interactive Brokers comparison here.
The bottom line
To sum it up, here’s where you stand:
- Thinkorswim will soon be unavailable in Singapore. Unless you plan on becoming an accredited investor, you should consult TD Ameritrade’s dedicated website on how to close your account.
- Good Alternatives are available!: Trader Workstation from Interactive Brokers or SaxoTraderGO from Saxo Bank offer everything you need to continue investing!
- Just open an account and deposit money: After deciding which trading platform to use, you must go through the account opening process and deposit money.
- Continue investing: After having your brokerage account funded, you can continue to invest in world markets, even after Thinkorswim is no longer available in Singapore!
We hope that this post addressed some of your concerns. Do your research to find the best investing strategy for you!
Please let us know in the comments if you have any doubts or suggestions.