The Singaporean office of US broker TD Ameritrade is to stop servicing retail clients from December 2023. TD Ameritrade Singapore will cease to offer services to retail traders from December this year with the business choosing to focus on wealthy and more experienced investors instead.
TD Ameritrade withdraws from Singapore
Known as accredited investors they can be high-net-worth individuals or businesses which are allowed to trade in a wider range of asset classes than their retail counterparts.
A spoke person for TD Ameritrade Singapore said in a statement:
“TD Ameritrade Singapore has made a strategic decision to focus on meeting the needs of accredited investors. We are committed to serving this unique market and providing these sophisticated local investors with access to the US markets”
Focussing on high-net-worth clients
The city-state of Singapore is one of the richest in the world and has the second-highest GDP per capita on the planet at just over $67,300 per annum.
This puts Singapore behind Switzerland in first place, but ahead of the United States, which comes third on the global rich list.
According to data from Forbes magazine, published earlier this month, Singapore is home to some 44 billionaires, and it is projected to have more than 590,000 millionaires by 2026, up from 526,000 in 2021.
Accredited investor opt-in
After December 1st this year retail, or non-accredited trading clients of TD Ameritrade Singapore, will find their accounts are restricted to closing trades only and no new positions or deposits will be accepted.
Retail client accounts will be closed by the broker on December 31st, and from October 27th the firm will charge non-accredited account holders a US $50.00 per month maintenance fee.
If these accounts hold less than $50.00 at this point, the balance will be zeroed.
Existing retail clients of TD Ameritrade Singapore can apply to become accredited investors, however, they will need to demonstrate assets of US$1.0 million or greater and an income of US$200,00 for the last two calendar years.
Financial professionals with relevant qualifications can also opt up to accredited investors status.
Anyone not meeting those criteria will need to start looking for a new home for their trading account, however.
TD Ameritrade makes way for Charles Schwab
TD Ameritrade was acquired by Charles Schwab in 2020 under a deal that was worth US $26.0 billion and Schwab is intent on rolling out its wealth management capabilities to the Singaporean market, in 2024.
What next for TD Ameritrade retail investors in Singapore?
It’s sad to learn that TDAmeritrade will stop servicing retail investors from December 2023. We have often looked up to TD as a leader in our space. I signed up for an account many years ago and it inspired me to join CMC Invest to build a retail-focused platform. The Think or Swim offering was great for trading Options and so too were their educational materials. It shows how tough retail is, especially if like CMC you operate a completely transparent model on fees and brokerage – it really requires scale and operational excellence to serve clients. To that end, I would like to offer TD Ameritrade customers support during this time – we are here to serve you during this period. Here is our transfer offer to you, in addition to our commitment to service level, integrity, and trust