Choosing a broker is a crucial step on your investment journey. The broker is the intermediary between you and the stock market. We’re lucky to have a good selection of brokers in Belgium. The goal of this article is to help you find out which broker is best for you for investing in ETFs. We’ll compare the brokers based on:

  • Fees
  • The handling of taxes for you
  • Convenience
  • The ease of opening an account
  • The safety of your assets

The overview

Let's start with an overview table that compares the brokers for different criteria. You can use this table as a reference when reading the full details below. Note that the transaction fee is for buying €1,000 of the IWDA ETF.

The information is also shown in the infographic below. Read on to get the full details!

Comparing brokers in Belgium to buy €1,000 of the IWDA ETF

DEGIRO

✅ Pros of DEGIRO ❌ Cons of DEGIRO
Cheap No fractional shares
Large selection of ETFs Issues with the regulator
Popular in Belgium Confusing app
Transferring shares is expensive
Doesn't help with all taxes
Connectivity costs

Story of DEGIRO 🇳🇱🇩🇪

Website of DEGIRO
DEGIRO emphasises the fact they are on the largest brokers in Europe.

The founders of DEGIRO were former employees of BinckBank. They founded the company originally in 2008 and originally focused on professional investors. However, they started to reach success once they launched their online trading platform in 2013. They quickly grew across the European Union and now serve more than 2.5 million customers which makes it one of the largest brokers.

DEGIRO is now part of the German Flatex bank. It has thousands of ETFs and stocks to choose from and it’s one of the brokers on the market that offers the best value. Like many brokers, they started with stocks, but you can now also trade commodities and make margin calls.

Fees for ETFs

Essentially, DEGIRO charges two types of fees:

  • transaction fees
  • connectivity fees

The transaction fee depends on the inclusion of the ETF in their core selection. For those ETFs, the transaction fee consists only of a €1.00 handling fee, instead of €3.00 for ETFs not in the core selection. There's a caveat though: you need to buy the ETF on the right exchange. ETFs are traded on stock exchanges. Famous ones are the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) or Nasdaq, or Xetra and Euronext Amsterdam in Europe.

Type Transaction fee
ETFs (core selection) €1
ETFs (non core selection) €3

As an example, buying €1,000 of the popular iShares MSCI World Accumulating ETF (known as its ticker IWDA) when using the Dutch DEGIRO will cost just a €1 transaction fee when buying it Euronext Amsterdam.

A peculiarity of DEGIRO in comparison to other brokers is that they charge a connectivity fee of €2.50 per stock exchange per year. This means that you need to pay €2.50 in a given year for each stock exchange where you've purchased or sold anything.

As a Belgian investor, you have to choose between signing up to the Dutch or French version of DEGIRO. DEGIRO waives the connectivity cost for the home exchanges:

  • 🇳🇱 DEGIRO.nl: no fee for Euronext Amsterdam and Euronext Brussels
  • 🇫🇷 DEGIRO.fr: no fee for Euronext Paris and Euronext Brussels

DEGIRO's fee structure varies per country which can make it confusing.

Convenience

Savings plan ❌ No
Fractional shares ❌ No
Customer support ✅ FAQ, chat, email, phone
🇧🇪 TOB ✅ DEGIRO handles it
🇧🇪 Dividend tax ❌ DEGIRO doesn't handle it
🇧🇪 Reynders tax ❌ DEGIRO doesn't handle it
🇧🇪 Declare your account to the NBB ❌ You have to do it yourself

The handling of the stock exchange transaction tax (TOB) is what DEGIRO sets apart from the other foreign brokers. However, you're still responsible for declaring any dividends yourself, as well as the Reynders tax. On top, you have to declare your DEGIRO account to the Belgian National Bank.

Setting up an account

🕰️ Time to open an account ✅ Within a day
🙋 itsme ❌ No
📱 Mobile app ✅ Yes
💻 Web app ✅ Yes
🙂 Ease of use ⭐ 3/5
🧒 Children accounts ❌ No
💑 Joint accounts ❌ No
💼 Business accounts ❌ No

Account openings for DEGIRO are quick and usually only take a day. A drawback is that DEGIRO does not use itsme, meaning that you'll have to get out your ID card or passport for identification. They also don't support business, children nor joint accounts.

Safety

Regulator BaFin (Germany) + AFM (Netherlands)
Past issues with the regulator ❌ Yes
Protection of financial assets €20,000
Cash safeguarded by deposit guarantee €100,000
Securities lending ❌ Yes
Payment for order flow ❌ Yes

DEGIRO is one of the few brokers that have had past issues with regulators, namely the Dutch regulator (AFM). They also lend out your securities, as well as receive payment for order flow, a controversial revenue model for brokers.

The full review

Discover all the pros and cons in our review of DEGIRO.

MEXEM

✅ Pros of MEXEM ❌ Cons of MEXEM
Cheap Not beginner-friendly
Large selection of ETFs Confusing interface of the app
Minimum deposit of €100 Doesn't help with all Belgian taxes
Fractional shares Based in Cyprus

Story of MEXEM 🇨🇾

Website of MEXEM
MEXEM has a strong focus on traders.

MEXEM was launched in 2018 and grew across Europe quite rapidly as a fast growing broker. They formed an initial and crucial partnership with Interactive Brokers which allows them to offer a variety of investment choices. The broker LYNX also benefits from a partnership like this.

Fees for ETFs

MEXEM is one of the cheapest options for European investors. For instance, buying €1,000 of the popular ETF IWDA by iShares, that tracks the MSCI World index, would cost only €2.40. This makes it an attractive proposition for putting your savings to work.

Convenience

Savings plan ✅ Yes
Fractional shares ✅ Yes
Customer support ✅ FAQ, chat, email, Whatsapp
🇧🇪 TOB ✅ MEXEM handles it
🇧🇪 Dividend tax ❌ MEXEM doesn't handle it
🇧🇪 Reynders tax ❌ MEXEM doesn't handle it
🇧🇪 Declare your account to the NBB ❌ You have to do it yourself

MEXEM targets experienced traders, offers a range of complex order types but allows for fractional shares for euro-cost averaging strategies. While it excels in customer support, including WhatsApp, it requires investors to manually handle tax reports and declarations. MEXEM manages the stock transaction tax (TOB) but does not assist with dividend or Reynders taxes on ETF profits, and requires investors to declare their accounts to the National Bank of Belgium annually.

Setting up an account

🕰️ Time to open an account ✅ Within a day
🙋 itsme ❌ No
📱 Mobile app ✅ Yes
💻 Web app ✅ Yes
🙂 Ease of use ⭐ 3/5
🧒 Children accounts ❌ No
💑 Joint accounts ✅ Yes
💼 Business accounts ✅ Yes

MEXEM offer fast account openings and you should have your account set up within a day. A major drawback is that MEXEM doesn't use itsme. This means you'll have to get your ID card or passport out for identification. They don't support children accounts but you can create a joint account with your partner and even a business account.

Safety

Regulator CySEC (Cyprus)
Past issues with the regulator ✅ No
Protection of financial assets €20,000
Cash safeguarded by deposit guarantee €100,000
Securities lending ❌ Yes (opt-in)
Payment for order flow ✅ No

Although MEXEM does participate in securities lending, it's entirely up to you whether you opt-in for the service. We found that MEXEM is quite transparent as a broker when it comes to this. Note that MEXEM is under the supervision of the CySEC which is the Cypriot regulator.

The full review

Discover all the pros and cons in our review of MEXEM.

BUX

✅ Pros of BUX ❌ Cons of BUX
Fractional shares €2.99 monthly service fee
Free transactions through "Zero Orders" No itsme
Savings plan They incite you to trade
Securities lending

Story of BUX 🇳🇱

Website of BUX
BUX offers a variety of options for you to start putting your savings to work.

BUX is a fast growing Dutch neo-broker and has been around since 2014. BUX, their trading app, makes commission-free investing easy and lets users invest in the companies they believe in. However, it's not an entirely free app as we'll discover below. BUX has grown rapidly and claims to have 700,000 customers across the EU and 100k in Belgium alone. Note that BUX were acquired by the large Dutch bank ABN Amro in December 2023. The transaction is subject to regulatory approval and is expected to close in 2024.

Fees for ETFs

Buying €1,000 of the popular IWDA ETF will be free of transaction fees if you do a "Zero Order". However, BUX is quite a rare broker in that it was one of the first to charge a service fee of €2.99 per month. The fee is automatically deducted from your account balance. If you don't have sufficient balance, they will continue charging you for a maximum of one year for €36. After this, they can delete your account.

Convenience

Savings plan ✅ Yes
Fractional shares ✅ Yes
Interest on uninvested cash ✅ Yes at 2.75%
Customer support ✅ FAQ, phone, email
❌ No chat
TOB ✅ BUX handles it
Dividend tax ❌ BUX doesn't handle it
Reynders tax ❌ BUX doesn't handle it
Declare your account to the NBB ❌ You have to do it yourself

BUX allows you to create an "investment plan" with self-chosen asset allocation and offers fractional shares for euro-cost averaging strategies. BUX promotes trading including risky investments like cryptocurrencies. Fortunately, BUX handles the Belgian stock transaction tax (TOB) but not the dividend or Reynders taxes on ETF profits, requiring users to manage these tax obligations. Additionally, Belgian users must declare their BUX accounts annually to the National Bank of Belgium.

Setting up an account

🕰️ Time to open an account ✅ Usually a day
🙋 itsme ❌ No
📱 Mobile app ✅ Yes
💻 Web app ✅ Yes
🙂 Ease of use ⭐ 3/5
🧒 Children accounts ❌ No
💑 Joint accounts ❌ No
💼 Business accounts ❌ No

Setting up a BUX account involves a simple process of registering with an email, answering questions, and providing ID and address proof for verification. Unfortunately they don't have itsme. Users can create an account through both the BUX web and mobile platforms, but the app's interface, crowded with details irrelevant to many investors, leads to a somewhat clunky experience, particularly on mobile. BUX does not offer the option to set up business, children or joint accounts; accounts can only be individually owned.

Safety

Regulator AFM
Past issues with the regulator ✅ None
Protection of financial assets €20,000
Cash safeguarded by deposit guarantee €100,000
Securities lending ❌ Yes
Payment for order flow ✅ No

BUX, a regulated entity in the Netherlands overseen by the AFM, has not faced issues with regulators and offers standard protections for investor. However, BUX engages in securities lending, a practice of lending stocks and ETFs to third parties, which they transparently report quarterly, but this carries the risk of insolvency where BUX might not return the lent financial instruments. To address this, they have a security structure with Stichting BUX Collateral holding collateral. Contrary to many other brokers, BUX does not engage in payment for order flow (PFOF), a practice that could compromise trade execution quality.

The full review

Discover all the pros and cons in our review of BUX.

ING Self Invest

✅ Pros of ING Self Invest ❌ Cons of ING Self Invest
Handles all taxes for you High fees
Easy to set up if you're an ING customer No fractional shares
You need to be an ING customer
Monthly custody fee
Not suited for monthly investing
No savings plans

Story of ING Self Invest 🇳🇱🇧🇪

Website of ING Self Invest

ING launched their own trading platform aimed for do it yourself investors in September 2021 called ING Self Invest. Trying to catch up to their bank rival KBC's Bolero or Belfius's Re=Bel, ING Self Invest focuses on offering an easy way to put your money to work and start trading in only a few minutes (provided you're already an ING customer). ING Self Invest makes it easy to buy ETFs. You can access their service directly in your Home'Bank app or on the web.

Fees for ETFs

Buying €1,000 worth of IWDA costs €3.50, which isn't that expensive compared to other brokers. Note that you also have to pay a custody fee of 0.0242% per month on your investments with ING Self Invest.

Convenience

Savings plan ❌ No
Fractional shares ❌ No
Customer support ✅ Chat, contact form, phone
❌ No direct email
TOB ✅ ING Self Invest handles it
Dividend tax ✅ ING Self Invest handles it
Reynders tax ✅ ING Self Invest handles it
Declare account to the NBB ✅ No need

Fortunately ING Self Invest handles all the taxes related to ETF investing. Unlike some brokers, ING Self Invest doesn't offer fractional shares, making it impractical for monthly investing due to high fees, and lacks automated savings plans, requiring manual account top-ups. Customer support at ING is noted to be slow.

Setting up an account

🕰️ Time to open an account ✅ Fast (if you're already an ING customer)
🙋 itsme ✅ Yes
📱 Mobile app ✅ Yes
💻 Web app ✅ Yes
🙂 Ease of use ⭐ 2/5
🧒 Children accounts ❌ No
💑 Joint accounts ✅ Yes
💼 Business accounts ❌ No

To use ING Self Invest, it's mandatory to have an ING bank account. Once you're an ING customer, setting up an ING Self Invest account is instantaneous, and the platform is accessible through both a web interface and a mobile app for iOS and Android. ING Self Invest does not offer business or children accounts but it does provide the option for joint accounts if you already have a joint ING bank account.

Safety

Regulator FSMA
Past issues with the regulator ✅ None
Protection of financial assets €20,000
Cash safeguarded by deposit guarantee €100,000
Securities lending ✅ No
Payment for order flow ✅ No

ING Self Invest, part of Belgium's ING Bank and regulated by the FSMA, offers a secure platform for asset investment with no known regulatory issues. ING Self Invest does not engage in securities lending or payment for order flow (PFOF), thereby avoiding certain types of counterparty risks and potential conflicts of interest in trade execution.

The full review

Read our review of ING Self Invest for a full breakdown of the broker.

LYNX

✅ Pros of LYNX ❌ Cons of LYNX
Transparent fees Not the cheapest
Large selection of ETFs Targeted for traders
Fractional shares Not easy for beginners
No savings plans

Story of LYNX 🇳🇱

Website of LYNX
LYNX is focused on catering to traders.

LYNX was launched in 2006 in Amsterdam. It's grown to over 300 employees and has offices spread out across ten countries. They formed an initial and crucial partnership with Interactive Brokers which allows them to offer a variety of investment choices. The broker MEXEM also benefits from a partnership like this. They have over 60,000 customers and provide a variety of access to different exchanges and all types of securities.

Fees for ETFs

LYNX isn't the cheapest broker on the market. For instance, it costs €6.00 when buying €1,000 of the popular ETF IWDA by iShares.

Convenience

Savings plan ❌ No
Fractional shares ✅ Yes
Customer support ✅ FAQ, email, phone, chat
TOB ✅ LYNX handles it
Dividend tax ❌ LYNX doesn't handle all of it
Reynders tax ❌ LYNX doesn't handle it
Declare your account to the NBB ❌ You have to do it yourself

LYNX does not provide automated savings plans, requiring manual account funding and trade execution, but it does offer fractional shares for strategies like euro-cost averaging. Their customer service is responsive and helpful, with quick email responses and local phone support. LYNX assists with the transaction tax and some dividend taxes but does not withhold the Reynders tax on bond ETF profits, and users must declare their accounts to the National Bank of Belgium.

Setting up an account

🕰️ Time to open an account ❌ 2 to 4 days
🙋 itsme ❌ No
📱 Mobile app ✅ Yes
💻 Web app ✅ Yes
🙂 Ease of use ⭐ 3/5
🧒 Children accounts ❌ No
💑 Joint accounts ✅ Yes
💼 Business accounts ✅ Yes

Opening an account with LYNX, though possible through their app, is more user-friendly via computer. The account verification takes between 2 to 4 business days, and a minimum deposit of €3,000 is required. LYNX supports joint accounts but not children accounts; business accounts are available with a minimum €20,000 deposit.

Safety

Regulator AFM (Netherlands)
Past issues with the regulator ✅ No
Protection of financial assets €20,000
Cash safeguarded by deposit guarantee €100,000
Securities lending ❌ Yes (opt-in)
Payment for order flow ✅ No

LYNX is regulated by the AFM in the Netherlands, has not had any known issues with regulators. While LYNX participates in securities lending through its opt-in "Stock Yield Enhancement Programme," they do not engage in payment for order flow (PFOF), a practice common among many brokers like Trade Republic.

The full review

Read our review to get a full breakdown of LYNX's pros and cons.

Saxo Bank

✅ Pros of Saxo Bank ❌ Cons of Saxo Bank
Low fees Not suited for monthly investing
Easy to sign-up No fractional shares
Handles all taxes for you Built for traders
No savings plans

Story of Saxo Bank 🇩🇰

Website of Saxo
Saxo Bank has a focus on traders.

The story of Saxo begins with its founding in Copenhagen in 1992. The company was established with a vision to make global financial markets more accessible to a wide audience. By 1998, Saxo Group had launched one of the first online trading platforms in Europe, offering professional-grade tools and easy access to global financial markets for anyone interested in investing. They serve over 1m customers and have over €100bn under management. In 2018, they purchased the popular online broker BinckBank for €428m. All BinckBank customers were automatically switched over to the Saxo Bank platform for trading.

Fees for ETFs

Saxo Bank is one of the cheapest brokers in Europe. To buy €1,000 worth of IWDA, the cost is €2 for the transaction fee.

Convenience

Savings plan ❌ No
Fractional shares ❌ No
Customer support ✅ FAQ, email, phone
TOB ✅ Saxo handles it
Dividend tax ✅ Saxo handles it
Reynders tax ✅ Saxo handles it
Declare your account to the NBB ✅ No need

Saxo Bank, catering to experienced traders, supports a wide array of complex order types but does not offer automated savings plans or fractional shares making regular investing less practical due to high fees. Saxo Bank assists Belgian investors with transaction taxes, dividend taxes, and the Reynders tax on ETF profits, and due to its direct presence in Belgium, customers don't need to declare their accounts to the Belgian National Bank.

Setting up an account

🕰️ Time to open an account ✅ Within a few days
🙋 itsme ✅ Yes
📱 Mobile app ✅ Yes
💻 Web app ✅ Yes
🙂 Ease of use ⭐ 2/5
🧒 Children accounts ❌ No
💑 Joint accounts ✅ Yes
💼 Business accounts ✅ Yes

Setting up an account with Saxo Bank is streamlined, especially if you use itsme, though approval may take a few days. While Saxo Bank does not provide children accounts, it does offer the option to set up joint and business accounts.

Safety

Regulator DFSA (Denmark)
Past issues with the regulator ❌ Yes
Protection of financial assets €20,000
Cash safeguarded by deposit guarantee €100,000
Securities lending ❌ Yes (opt-in)
Payment for order flow ✅ No

Saxo Bank, with its primary regulator being the Danish Financial Supervisory Authority (DFSA), continues to operate under a Dutch banking license after acquiring BinckBank. Saxo Bank participates in securities lending with an opt-in policy for transparency, and does not engage in payment for order flow (PFOF).

The full review

Learn more about the pros and cons of investing through Saxo Bank in our review.

Bolero

✅ Pros of Bolero ❌ Cons of Bolero
Handles all taxes for you High fees
Integration with itsme No fractional shares
Cheaper fees for the ETF playlist Confusing interface
Not suited for monthly investing
No savings plans

Story of Bolero 🇧🇪

Bolero's website is fairly traditional for a large bank offering a brokerage service

Bolero is one of the first online brokers in Belgium and launched in 1999. The name Bolero stands for Belgian OnLine Exchange Realtime Operated. It's owned and run by KBC Bank and allows Belgians to invest in many different types of assets. Note that you don't have to be a KBC customer to use Bolero. Bolero has a wide range of ETFs to choose from and continues to be one of the most popular brokers in Belgium although it also charges some of the highest fees.

Fees for ETFs

Although Bolero recently reduced their pricing, unfortunately it's still one of the most expensive brokers in Belgium. As part of their new pricing, they launched the Bolero ETF playlist. Essentially, it reduces the price for a specific list of ETFs. They inspired themselves from DEGIRO's core selection in order to be competitive for more Belgians. For example, buying €1,000 of the IWDA ETF will cost you €5.00 in transaction fees.

Convenience

Savings plan ❌ No
Fractional shares ❌ No
Customer support ✅ FAQ, phone, email
❌ No chat
TOB ✅ Bolero handles it
Dividend tax ✅ Bolero handles it
Reynders tax ✅ Bolero handles it
Declare account to the NBB ✅ No need

Bolero handles the transaction tax (TOB). They also automatically withhold and declare the 30% dividend tax on shares and distributing funds, as well as the Reynders tax on ETF profits. However, Bolero does not offer automated savings plans or fractional shares, which, combined with high fees, makes regular investing less practical, potentially necessitating larger, less frequent investments.

Setting up an account

🕰️ Time to open an account ❌ Process can take a few days
🙋 itsme ✅ Yes
📱 Mobile app ✅ Yes
💻 Web app ✅ Yes
🙂 Ease of use ⭐ 3/5
🧒 Children accounts ❌ No
💑 Joint accounts ✅ Yes
💼 Business accounts ✅ Yes

Creating a new account with Bolero is easy with itsme, but requires a Belgian phone number, and offers both individual and joint account options, with joint accounts only creatable via computer. Account approval can take a few days, but for KBC customers, this process is faster and allows easy linking of KBC current accounts for transactions. Bolero does not provide accounts for children but you can create an account for your business.

Safety

Regulator FSMA
Past issues with the regulator ✅ None
Protection of financial assets €20,000
Cash safeguarded by deposit guarantee €100,000
Securities lending ✅ No
Payment for order flow ✅ No

Bolero, owned by Belgium's largest bank KBC, is regulated by the FSMA and has not had any known regulatory issues, providing a sense of safety for investors' assets. Bolero does not engage in securities lending or payment for order flow (PFOF).

The full review

Learn more about the pros and cons of Bolero in our review.

MeDirect

✅ Pros of MeDirect ❌ Cons of MeDirect
Handles all taxes for you High fees
itsme integration No fractional shares
High-interest savings accounts Ill-suited for monthly investing
Expensive to move your investments elsewhere

Story of MeDirect 🇧🇪

Website of MeDirect
MeDirect's website is easy and clear to understand.

MeDirect was originally started back in 2004 and operated under the name "Mediterrean Bank". The current form of MeDirect was created in 2013 and initially offered a new type of savings account specifically for Belgians. They have around 80,000 clients in Belgium and more than 3 billion euros under management. You can do basic investing through ETFs, funds and bonds using their brokerage service.

Fees for ETFs

Buying €1,000 of the popular IWDA ETF will cost €10 when purchasing on the Euronext Amsterdam exchange. As you pay this fee for every purchase, it will compound to a lot of money and missed returns on the long term. MeDirect is one of the most expensive brokers in Belgium.

Convenience

Savings plan ❌ (only through MeManaged)
Fractional shares ❌ No
Customer support ✅ FAQ, phone, contact form, email
❌ No chat
TOB ✅ MeDirect handles it
Dividend tax ✅ MeDirect handles it
Reynders tax ✅ MeDirect handles it
Declare account to the NBB ✅ No need

MeDirect, a Belgian-based broker, handles the transaction tax (TOB) and automatically withholds and declares the 30% dividend tax on shares and distributing funds as well as the Reynders tax on ETF profits. They don't offer automated savings plans. MeDirect does not support fractional shares, leading to higher investment costs and potentially necessitating less frequent, larger investment contributions.

Setting up an account

🕰️ Time to open an account ✅ Fast if you use itsme
🙋 itsme ✅ Yes
📱 Mobile app ✅ Yes
💻 Web app ✅ Yes
🙂 Ease of use ⭐ 3/5
🧒 Children accounts ❌ No
💑 Joint accounts ✅ Yes
💼 Business accounts ❌ No

Setting up a new MeDirect account is smooth thanks to itsme, reducing the need for manual form filling and ID verification. MeDirect's recent redesign has improved clarity and user experience, yet the platform still presents complexities and excessive details for average investors, especially those focused on buy-and-hold strategies and ETF investing. While MeDirect allows the creation of joint accounts, it does not offer the option to set up accounts for children, with a possible workaround being the creation of multiple portfolios in the primary account holder's name.

Safety

Regulator FSMA
Past issues with the regulator ✅ None
Protection of financial assets €20,000
Cash safeguarded by deposit guarantee €100,000
Securities lending ✅ No
Payment for order flow ✅ No

MeDirect, regulated by the FSMA in Belgium, has no known issues with any regulator. MeDirect does not engage in securities lending or payment for order flow (PFOF), practices which can introduce counterparty risks and conflicts of interest.

The full review

Read our review to get all the details about investing through MeDirect.

Keytrade

✅ Pros of Keytrade ❌ Cons of Keytrade
Handles all taxes for you Long account opening times
Integration with itsme High fees
They reimburse incoming transfers No fractional shares
Confusing interface
Not suited for monthly investing
Fee for dormant accounts

Story of Keytrade 🇧🇪🇫🇷

Website of Keytrade Bank for investing

Keytrade was started in 1998 and was one of the first online brokers in Belgium. Their offer has grown a lot since then, as they propose full banking services today. In 2005, Keytrade Bank was acquired by Groupe Crelan (formerly Crédit Agricole) and is now part of the Crédit Mutuel Arkéa group.

Fees for ETFs

Buying €1,000 of the popular IWDA ETF will cost €14.95. As you pay this fee for every purchase, it will compound to a lot of money and missed returns on the long term. Keytrade is among the most expensive brokers available to us in Belgium.

Convenience

Savings plan ❌ (only through Keyplan)
Fractional shares
Customer support ✅ FAQ, phone, contact form, email
❌ No chat
TOB ✅ Keytrade handles it
Dividend tax ✅ Keytrade handles it
Reynders tax ✅ Keytrade handles it
Declare account to the NBB ✅ No need

Keytrade handles the stock transaction tax (TOB), automatically withholds and declars the 30% dividend tax, and handles the Reynders tax on ETF profits. However, Keytrade does not offer automated savings plans or fractional shares, making regular, smaller investments impractical due to high fees. Despite offering traditional support mechanisms like email and phone, Keytrade's customer service is not notably customer-centric, with potential delays in email responses.

Setting up an account

🕰️ Time to open an account ❌ Process can take weeks
🙋 itsme ✅ Yes
📱 Mobile app ✅ Yes
💻 Web app ✅ Yes
🙂 Ease of use ⭐ 2/5
🧒 Children accounts ✅ Yes
💑 Joint accounts ✅ Yes
💼 Business accounts ✅ Yes

Creating a new Keytrade account is efficient thanks to itsme, as the traditional six-step process can be slow, with some users experiencing long waiting times for account approval. Account setup is only available on the web platform, not on mobile. Where Keytrade stands out is the ability to set up accounts for business, children and joint accounts.

Safety

Regulator FSMA
Past issues with the regulator ✅ None
Protection of financial assets €70,000
Cash safeguarded by deposit guarantee €100,000
Securities lending ✅ No
Payment for order flow ✅ No

Keytrade, regulated by the Belgian FSMA, has no known regulatory issues. As it's asubsidiary of the French Arkéa, Keytrade's clients benefit from the French Fonds de Garantie des Dépôts et de Résolution (FGDR), which protects assets up to €70,000. Keytrade does not engage in securities lending or payment for order flow (PFOF).

The full review

Learn more about the pros and cons of Keytrade in our review.

Re=Bel

✅ Pros of Re=Bel ❌ Cons of Re=Bel
Handles all taxes for you High fees
Easy to use if you're a Belfius customer No fractional shares
itsme integration You need to be a Belfius customer
Not suited for monthly investing
No savings plans

Story of Re=Bel 🇧🇪

Website of Re=Bel
The investment app with a cause is their tagline.

Belfius launched their own trading platform aimed for do it yourself investors in 2021 called Re=Bel. Trying to catch up to their bank rival KBC's Bolero, Re=Bel differentiation is to focus on promoting sustainable investing. Re=Bel stands for Resolute Belfius. Re=Bel makes it easy to buy ETFs. They also heavily focus on themes such as AI investing and have "experts" provide stock tips. The sustainability principles of Re=Bel are brought to light when you're making a purchase on their app, you may encounter a "sustainability" warning. Note that Belfius Re=Bel is only available to you if you're a Belfius customer. If you wish to use Re=Bel, you have to sign up for a bank account with Belfius first and then you'll be able to access the app.

Fees for ETFs

Buying €1,000 worth of IWDA costs €6.00 in fees, and increases as you invest higher amounts. This is a difference with other brokers where there's little to no transaction fee. This makes Re=Bel stand out as quite an expensive proposition for Belgian investors.

Convenience

Savings plan ❌ No
Fractional shares ❌ No
Customer support ✅ FAQ, chat
❌ No direct email, phone
TOB ✅ Re=Bel handles it
Dividend tax ✅ Re=Bel handles it
Reynders tax ✅ Re=Bel handles it
Declare account to the NBB ✅ No need

Re=Bel, part of the Belgian Belfius bank, manages the transaction tax (TOB), automatically withholds and declares the 30% dividend tax and the Reynders tax on ETF profits. However, Re=Bel does not offer automated savings plans, requiring manual transfers for account top-ups. The broker's customer support is not highly rated, lacking direct email or phone contact options, and Re=Bel does not offer fractional shares, making regular, smaller investments impractical due to high fees.

Setting up an account

🕰️ Time to open an account ✅ Fast (if already Belfius customer)
🙋 itsme ✅ Yes
📱 Mobile app ✅ Yes
💻 Web app ✅ Yes
🙂 Ease of use ⭐ 2/5
🧒 Children accounts ❌ No
💑 Joint accounts ✅ Yes
💑 Business accounts ❌ No

Using Re=Bel requires a Belfius bank account. Re=Bel's integration with the Belfius app smooths the account creation process but limits its use to Belfius customers. While Re=Bel allows the creation of joint accounts for Belfius customers, it does not offer the option to set up children's accounts or have an account for your business.

Safety

Regulator FSMA and BNB
Past issues with the regulator ✅ None
Protection of financial assets €20,000
Cash safeguarded by deposit guarantee €100,000
Securities lending ✅ No
Payment for order flow ✅ No

Re=Bel, owned by Belfius, one of Belgium's largest banks, is regulated by the FSMA and the Belgian National Bank. Despite a lack of regulatory issues for Re=Bel, its parent company Belfius emerged from the bailout and subsequent acquisition of Dexia in 2011, and is fully owned by the Belgian government. Re=Bel does not engage in securities lending or payment for order flow (PFOF).

The full review

Read our review of Re=Bel to get a full breakdown of the pros and cons.

eToro

✅ Pros of eToro ❌ Cons of eToro
Fractional shares Only trade in USD
Social trading CFDs are very risky
No transaction fee Hidden fees
Inactivity fee
Banned in some countries
No help with Belgian taxes

Story of eToro 🇮🇱

Website of eToro
Alec Baldwin was the face of eToro at one point in time!

eToro was founded in 2007 in Tel Aviv. They've grown to 30 million users around the world by giving their customers easy access the stock market. Do note that there's "only" 2.6 million users with money in their account so the number is quite inflated. eToro has been at the forefront of the movement to make investing more "mainstream", as shown through their adverts featuring Alec Baldwin. One of the unique features of eToro is its CopyTrader function, which allows users to automatically replicate the trades of successful traders on the platform. This feature is particularly useful for novice investors who may not have the experience or knowledge to make their own investment decisions. Additionally, eToro offers a social feed where you can interact with your friends, share ideas, and discuss investment strategies. They were one of the first brokers to pioneer "social investing".

Fees for ETFs

eToro has a limited selection in comparison with other brokers. They only offer 263 ETFs to purchase. Buying €1,000 of the popular IWDA ETF will cost €0 in transaction fees. However, keep note of the currency exchange fee you'll be paying. Note that you can't actually purchase IWDA but you get the same fund with an alternative ticker SWDA. Even though you're most likely going to use eToro from the Belgium (or in the EU) if you're reading this, their entire app is in USD. This is where eToro makes the bulk of their revenue from! The conversions between € and USD are core to their business model. For example, if you deposit via a bank transfer, you'll pay 0.5% exchange rate costs. If you deposit via Paypal or Sofort, you'll end up paying a 1.5% exchange rate cost.

Convenience

Savings plan ❌ No
Fractional shares ✅ Yes
Customer support ✅ FAQ, chat, email
❌ No phone
TOB ❌ eToro doesn't handle it
Dividend tax ❌ eToro doesn't handle it
Reynders tax ❌ eToro doesn't handle it
Declare your account to the NBB ❌ You have to do it yourself

eToro allows setting up recurring deposits, but investments must be made manually. They offer the ability to purchase fractional shares, facilitating euro-cost averaging strategies, particularly beneficial for investing smaller amounts periodically. However, eToro requires users to handle their own tax obligations, including the Belgian transaction tax, dividend tax, and Reynders tax on ETF profits, as well as declaring the account to the National Bank of Belgium annually, as eToro does not provide assistance in these areas.

Setting up an account

🕰️ Time to open an account ✅ Within hours
🙋 itsme ❌ No
📱 Mobile app ✅ Yes
💻 Web app ✅ Yes
🙂 Ease of use ⭐ 3/5
🧒 Children accounts ❌ No
💑 Joint accounts ❌ No
💼 Business accounts ✅ Yes

Setting up an eToro account is fast and user-friendly, requiring only an email for initial access, with full account creation necessitating ID and proof of address, typically approved within a few hours. eToro offers the convenience of signing up through both web and mobile platforms including the option to use Facebook or Google for registration. However, the app's design feels somewhat outdated, and its interface can be overwhelming with information, especially for buy-and-hold ETF investors. eToro does not offer children or joint accounts, though joint configurations for deposits are possible. You can create a business account on eToro but note that the minimum deposit is significant at $50,000.

Safety

Regulator CySEC (Cyprus)
Past issues with the regulator ❌ Yes
Protection of financial assets €20,000
Cash safeguarded by deposit guarantee ❌ No
Securities lending ❌ Yes
Payment for order flow 🤷 Not clear

eToro is regulated by multiple entities including the Cyprus Securities Exchange Commission (CySEC), the FCA in the UK, and the SEC in the United States, with its headquarters in Israel. They have faced regulatory issues, including being banned in India, fined €1.3 million in Italy for misleading advertising, and fined in Canada for operating without registration. While eToro's EU operations based in Cyprus offer €20,000 protection under the European investor protection scheme, cash is not protected by the €100,000 deposit guarantee scheme. Additionally, eToro participates in securities lending and engages in payment for order flow (PFOF) in the United States, with unclear practices for European clients.

The full review

Read our review to get the full low-down on eToro as a broker for Belgian investors.

Interactive Brokers

✅ Pros of Interactive Brokers ❌ Cons of Interactive Brokers
Low prices Confusing pricing
Move country easily Targeted for traders
Fractional shares Not easy for beginners
Good for US stocks Figure out taxes yourself

Story of Interactive Brokers 🇺🇸

Website of Interactive Brokers
Interactive Brokers is targeted for traders.

Interactive Brokers is an American brokerage firm established in 1978 by Thomas Peterffy, who still serves as its chairman. It's grown to be one of the largest in the world with over 2 million customers. It employs just under 3,000 staff across 15 countries, and is publicly traded on the stock exchange under the ticker symbol IBKR. The brokerage offers a comprehensive trading platform, providing investors access to a diverse range of financial instruments across 150 exchanges in 33 countries.

Interactive Brokers is renowned for its low transaction costs, making it one of the cheapest options out there but let's take a look at their offer in more detail.

Fees for ETFs

Interactive Brokers is one of the cheapest brokers on the market. For instance, it costs €3.00 when buying €1,000 of the popular ETF IWDA by iShares.

Convenience

Savings plan ❌ No
Fractional shares ✅ Yes
Customer support ✅ FAQ, email, phone
❌ No Dutch
TOB ❌ Interactive Brokers doesn't handle it
Dividend tax ❌ Interactive Brokers doesn't handle it
Reynders tax ❌ Interactive Brokers doesn't handle it
Declare your account to the NBB ❌ You have to do it yourself

Interactive Brokers does not provide automated savings plans, requiring manual account funding and trade execution, but it does offer fractional shares for strategies like euro-cost averaging. Their customer service is via email but note that they do not speak Dutch so you'll have to communicate in English or French. Unfortunately Interactive Brokers does not help with declaring any of the taxes. This makes it a cumbersome broker to use as you'll have to handle everything yourself.

Setting up an account

🕰️ Time to open an account ❌ 3 days
🙋 itsme ❌ No
📱 Mobile app ✅ Yes
💻 Web app ✅ Yes
🙂 Ease of use ⭐ 2/5
🧒 Children accounts ✅ Yes
💑 Joint accounts ✅ Yes
💼 Business accounts ✅ Yes

Opening an account with Interactive Brokers is better done via computer. They don't have an itsme integration. The account verification takes usually 3 business days. Interactive Brokers supports business, children and joint accounts.

Safety

Regulator SEC (United States)
CBI (Ireland)
MNB (Hungary)
Past issues with the regulator ❌ Yes
Protection of financial assets €20,000/td>
Cash safeguarded by deposit guarantee ❌ No
Securities lending ❌ Yes (opt-in)
Payment for order flow ✅ No

Interactive Brokers is regulated entity in the US. However, in Europe, it has two main regulators: by the Central Bank of Ireland and the Central Bank of Hungary. Unfortunately, they have had issues with regulators and had to pay a $38m fine for it's lack of anti-money laundering processes. While Interactive Brokers participates in securities lending through its opt-in "Stock Yield Enhancement Programme," they do not engage in payment for order flow (PFOF), a practice common among many brokers like Trade Republic.

The full review

Read our review to get a full breakdown of Interactive Broker's pros and cons.

Easybroker

✅ Pros of Easybroker ❌ Cons of Easybroker
Transparent fees Trading platform is only in English
Large selection of ETFs You have to handle taxes yourself
Backed by Interactive Brokers Not easy for beginners
Fractional shares Targeted for traders

Story of Easybroker 🇳🇱

Website of Easybroker
Easybroker's website is entirely in Dutch but their trading platform is in English.

Easybroker began it's journey in 2014 with a focus on the Belgian and Dutch markets. They formed an initial and crucial partnership with Interactive Brokers which allows them to offer a variety of investment choices. Both LYNX and MEXEM are brokers available to Belgians that also benefit from this partnership. They claim to serve more than 15,000 customers in Belgium and the Netherlands and provide a variety of access to different exchanges and all types of securities.

Let's take a look at their offer.

Fees for ETFs

Easybroker is one of the cheapest broker on the market. For instance, it costs €3.00 to buy €1,000 of the iShares Core S&P 500 ETF (IE00B5BMR087).

Convenience

Savings plan ❌ No
Fractional shares ✅ Yes
Customer support ✅ FAQ, email, phone
❌ No chat
🇧🇪 TOB ✅ Easybroker handles it
🇧🇪 Dividend tax ❌ Easybroker doesn't handle it
🇧🇪 Reynders tax ❌ Easybroker doesn't handle it
🇧🇪 Declare your account to the NBB ❌ You have to do it yourself

Easybroker doesn't provide any automated saving plans. Although their website and support is all in Dutch, the trading platform is only in English. This is a bit of an obstacle to using their platform. They also don't have any support in French. Easybroker handles the TOB but that's the only tax they help you with. You'll have to handle the rest yourself as an investor.

Setting up an account

🕰️ Time to open an account ❌ At least 3 days
🙋 itsme ❌ No
📱 Mobile app ✅ Yes
💻 Web app ✅ Yes
🙂 Ease of use ⭐ 2/5
🧒 Children accounts ❌ No
💑 Joint accounts 🤷 Unclear
💼 Business accounts ✅ Yes

Unfortunately Easybroker doesn't use itsme so you'll spend quite a bit of time creating your account. It's best you use a computer to set your account up for the first time. It usually takes 3 business days to get your account open and they don't offer children accounts. It's also unclear if you can create a joint account - they suggest you contact them to do so. You have the possibility to create a business account.

Safety

Regulator AFM (Netherlands)
Past issues with the regulator ✅ No
Protection of financial assets €20,000
Cash safeguarded by deposit guarantee ❌ No
Securities lending ❌ Yes (opt-in)
Payment for order flow ✅ No

Easybroker is regulated by the AFM in the Netherlands. As they have a partnership with Interactive Brokers, you have the same protection for your investments that they offer. Easybroker participates in securities lending through its opt-in "Stock Yield Enhancement Programme," they do not engage in payment for order flow (PFOF), a practice common among other neo-brokers.

The full review

Read our full review to discover the pros and cons of using Easybroker.

Trade Republic

✅ Pros of Trade Republic ❌ Cons of Trade Republic
Cheap Payment for order flow
Fractional shares Poor customer support
Low minimum deposit Doesn't help with all taxes
Saving plans

Story of Trade Republic 🇩🇪

Website of Trade Republic
The tagline is to make investing simple. There's a big disclaimer on their homepage with regards to cryptocurrency investments through their app.

Trade Republic was founded in 2015 in Munich under its original name Neon Trading. It was incubated by Comdirect Bank and is now headquartered in Berlin, Germany. Trade Republic is a "neo-broker" meaning it's modern and fresh in comparison to older brokers. They are very much like the Robinhood app but built for Europeans. They are backed by some of largest venture capital firms in the world including Sequoia. In total they have raised over €1.1bn in order to become the leading trading app in Europe and have launched in 17 countries. Trade Republic claim to have over two million customers, spread across the countries they've launched in. They launched their app in Belgium in October 2022.

Fees for ETFs

Trade Republic really is one of the cheapest options for European investors. For instance, buying €1,000 of the popular ETF IWDA by iShares, that tracks the MSCI World index, would cost only €1. This makes it an attractive proposition for putting your savings to work but there are some downsides too.

Convenience

Savings plan ✅ Yes
Interest on uninvested cash ✅ Yes
Fractional shares ✅ Yes
Customer support ✅ FAQ, email
❌ No phone, no live chat
TOB ❌ Trade Republic doesn't handle it
Dividend tax ❌ Trade Republic doesn't handle it
Reynders tax ❌ Trade Republic doesn't handle it
Declare your account to the NBB ❌ You have to do it yourself

Trade Republic offers fee-free transactions for ETF purchases through its automated savings plans, enabling fixed monthly investments with selectable investment dates. However, Trade Republic's customer support is limited, lacking phone service and relying on automated responses, and users must handle their own tax obligations in Belgium, including the transaction tax (TOB), dividend tax, and Reynders tax, as well as declaring their account to the National Bank of Belgium.

Setting up an account

🕰️ Time to open an account ✅ Same day
🙋 itsme ❌ No
📱 Mobile app ✅ Yes
💻 Web app ✅ Yes
🙂 Ease of use ⭐ 3/5
🧒 Children accounts ❌ No
💑 Joint accounts ❌ No
💼 Business accounts ❌ No

Setting up a Trade Republic account easy requiring only a valid ID and tax residency in Belgium, with account approval typically completed within a few hours. The platform allows account creation on both web and mobile though owning a smartphone is necessary. Design and information density can be challenging on Trade Republic's app particularly for buy-and-hold ETF investors. Trade Republic does not offer the option to create business, children or joint accounts, restricting account ownership to individuals.

Safety

Regulator BaFin (Germany)
Past issues with the regulator ✅ No
Protection of financial assets €20,000
Cash safeguarded by deposit guarantee €100,000
Securities lending ✅ No
Payment for order flow ❌ Yes

Trade Republic, headquartered in Berlin, operates under the supervision of BaFin, the German regulator. They faced scrutiny during the GameStop saga in January 2021, leading to numerous complaints but ultimately no finding of market manipulation by BaFin. While Trade Republic does not engage in securities lending, they do participate in payment for order flow (PFOF), a revenue model that has been controversial due to potential disadvantages to investors through less favourable execution prices. This practice, although scrutinised, remains operational in Germany, despite proposed EU regulations to ban PFOF by June 2026.

The full review

Read our review to see the full pros and cons of Trade Republic.

Trading 212

You can't create a Trading 212 account if you're resident in Belgium

Message by Trading 212 that Belgians can't open an account
Belgium is the only country in the EU where you're blocked from creating an account on Trading 212

The reasons aren't particularly clear but at the time of writing you're not able to sign up to a Trading 212 account if you're a resident in Belgium. This seems to be the only country which is blocked in the EU to register an account. We didn't add all the Trading 212 details and review due to this. We understand that many Belgians are using Trading 212 and may have signed up before the block. They may open up registrations again in the future so you can also sign up to their waitlist.

The full review

However, if you're still interested in learning more about their app, you can read our review to get the full pros and cons of using Trading 212 as a broker.

Tool to compare broker fees for any ETF

This article compares brokers for the IWDA ETF. But we also built a free tool to compare broker fees for other ETFs, such as EMIM or VUSA. It will help you determine the cheapest broker in Belgium to buy your ETF.

Access the tool

Curvo: easier than a broker

When you manage your own investments through a broker, you have to work out what ETFs to buy. Building a portfolio of ETFs that will bring you success on the long term is not an easy task. You need to understand your goals, your appetite for risk, and you capacity for taking risk in your current financial situation. On top of that, you need to figure out when to buy the ETFs, understand the tax implications of your decisions, rebalance your investments and make sure they stay in line with your goals and risk tolerance.

We built Curvo to simplify good ETF investing. Rather than having to pick the right ETFs among the thousands available through some of the brokers listed above, you invest in a portfolio that is tailored to you and your goals. These portfolios are composed of globally diversified index funds, meaning you earn a piece of the growth of the global economy, and they're best suited to make the most of your savings long term. And they're secure, as they're managed by NNEK, a Dutch investment firm under supervision of the regulator in the Netherlands (AFM).

How Curvo works
Investing through Curvo is an easy way to invest well in Belgium. All portfolios are managed by NNEK, a Dutch investment firm licensed with the AFM.

We believe that investing is an important tool to improve our financial well-being and to prepare for our future. We are building Curvo to fulfil that vision, by making good investing easy and accessible to all.

Invest in a diversified portfolio set up for you

Simply answer a short questionnaire and you can start investing in a portfolio that matches you and your goals. All portfolios are managed by NNEK, an investment firm licensed by the AFM, the Dutch financial regulator.

Automated savings plans

You can set up a monthly contribution from €50. That means that money is automatically invested for you in your portfolio. Adopt the best saving habits, without effort!

Fractional shares

All the money you send towards your portfolio is fully invested. No cash is left on the side.

No TOB 🇧🇪

The funds in the portfolios aren’t liable for the Belgian transaction tax (or "TOB"). This saves you between 0.12% and 1.32% compared to a broker for every time you invest or sell!

Invest sustainably

Your investments focus on one guiding principle: don’t invest in companies that are considered destructive to the planet. Companies from sectors like non-renewable energy, vice products, weapons and controversial companies are excluded from your portfolio.

Project yourself into the future

You can see how much your portfolio is expected to be worth in the future. You can answer questions like “how will increasing my monthly contribution by €50, €100 or €200 affect my long-term savings?” to give a concrete idea for the “future you”.

Learn more on how it compares to investing through a broker.

Summary

There are a lot of different options on the Belgian market to help you passively invest in ETFs. We started with an overview of the different brokers available in Belgium, and discussed each in detail. Unfortunately, there is no best broker for everyone so you will have to decide what criteria are important to you.

A broker offers access to the financial markets, and allows you to buy and sell any ETF you want. But you are responsible for correctly managing your investment portfolio. If you’re feeling a little overwhelmed, don’t hesitate to explore Curvo. After all, our goal is to have all the complexities of good investing taken care of for you.

Questions you may have

What's the best broker for fractional shares?

You can buy fractions of shares from the foreign brokers MEXEM, BUX, Revolut, Trade Republic, and LYNX. Unfortunately, no Belgian broker offers fractional shares.

What's the best broker for beginner investors?

We think DEGIRO and Bolero are two of the best brokers for beginning Belgian investors. They both handle the Belgian transaction tax (TOB) and have web and mobile apps to make your trades and follow your investments. DEGIRO is cheaper, but requires declaring your account to the Belgian National Bank.

Using a broker makes sense if you have the motivation, interest and time to go through the learning curve of managing your own investments. If not, we built Curvo as the most beginner-friendly way for good investing in Belgium. Discover if Curvo suits your needs.

What's the cheapest broker?

The cheapest brokers for Belgians are DEGIRO, Trade Republic, eToro, and MEXEM. Of those, only DEGIRO and MEXEM help you with the declaration of the transaction tax (TOB). And all are foreign, meaning you have to declare your account to the Belgian National Bank.

Finally, these cheapest brokers make money through other means like securities lending or payment for order flow, which could negatively impact your investments. Be wary of using only price to guide your choice of broker.

What's the best online broker?

All the brokers are now online which allow you to create an account either through a computer or even on your phone using an app. The most popular online brokers based from our research in Belgium are DEGIRO and MEXEM.

What's the best Belgian broker?

The best Belgian brokers are Bolero, Re=Bel, MeDirect, and Keytrade. But they all vary in terms of convenience, safety and price. So the best Belgian broker for your depends on what's important to you.