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(STEVE COLE/WWW.STEVECOLE.COM)

Paying more than $10 a trade? You’re doing it wrong

If you’re a newcomer to online investing and you pay more than a flat $10 for a stock trade, it’s time to think about changing brokers.

Ten dollars is the new price ceiling for online stock trades in small accounts – independent brokers Questrade and Virtual Brokers are well below it and bank – or credit union-owned BMO InvestorLine, Disnat, National Bank Direct Brokerage, RBC Direct Investing and TD Direct Investing are just below it. Just to be clear, clients of these firms never pay more than $10, no matter how many shares they buy, how much money is in their accounts or how often they trade.