Rakuten Securities reduces fees for US equities trading as competition among Japanese brokers heats up

Maria Nikolova

Rakuten and Monex are lowering trading fees amid increased efforts to attract retail traders.

Rakuten Securities, a subsidiary of Rakuten Inc (TYO:4755), today confirmed the lowering of the minimum trading fees for US equities trading to zero. This happens after an earlier announcement in July about plans by the company to enhance its trading conditions.

Let’s note that the latest versions of MARKETSPEED and MARKETSPEED II come with no usage fees for all users of the platforms. Previously, the platforms offered free of charge use to traders who complied with a range of requirements – for instance, certain account balance and trading turnover. Now, all these conditions are off. But traders who want to make use of the new conditions need to upgrade the platform to the newest version and to apply for a MARKETSPEED account.

A similar move in terms of offering better trading conditions to retail traders has been undertaken by Monex Inc, a part of Monex Group, Inc. (TYO:8698). This broker has earlier this month unveiled its plans to reduce the trading fees for US equities trading. The brokerage said it will lower the minimum fee for U.S. equities trading to US$0 (free of charge) for trades that are executed from Monday, July 22, 2019.

The company explained that the change will enable its customers to benefit from its unique U.S. equities trading services with lower cost. Let’s also note that Monex has seen sliding trading volumes in Japan and the move may be an attempt to stimulate the trading activity.

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