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For the third consecutive year, Qtrade Investor has been awarded top honours for Canadian self-directed brokerage customer service among 15 firms, as measured by Toronto-based Surviscor Inc.

RBC Direct Investing finished second int the 2017 Surviscor Service Level Assessment review, improving two spots from 2016, while Desjardins Online Brokerage and Credential Direct tied for third.

The review, now in its 13th year, analyzed 170 service enquiries per brokerage firm sent between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31, 2017, with the key variable being the average response time.

“The whole self-directed brokerage industry has come under fire since late December due to platform downtimes and long wait times — levels not seen since early 2000. Our review covers all of 2017 and may not completely reflect the immediate issues; however, the industry has been trending in the wrong direction for months, and some firms for years,” says Glenn LaCoste, president of Surviscor Inc., in a statement.

“The difference with Qtrade Investor is that they consistently outperform their industry peers regardless of the current service challenges facing the self-directed brokerage industry,” he says.

In addition to the online brokerage rankings, Surviscor analyzed 29 banks and creditunions using the same methodology and criteria. The banking results indicate a major shift in Canada as, for the first time in 13 years, there was no major bank in the top five.

The complete rankings along with individual firm review pages, for both the brokerage and banking industries, can be found at