KEEPING THE COSTS DOWN: Mexem’s incredible trading fees

Keeping the Costs Down: Mexem’s Incredible Trading Fees

Mexem, the introducing broker for Interactive Brokers, has been bringing world-class trading to South African investors for over a year now. Enabling trading in 120 markets and 28 currencies, all at very low fees, Mexem has dramatically transformed the face of investing for South Africans.

By bringing Interactive Brokers – the largest US electronic brokerage firm – to South Africa, Mexem says it is able to offer extremely low fees that simply cannot be matched by South African firms who are limited by their size and location. Impressively, Mexem does not charge clients a cent more than the fees charged by Interactive Brokers.

To test Mexem’s low-fee proposition, we decided to compare the trading costs between Mexem and its South African competitors. And we were amazed with the results.

The chart below compares the trading fees charged for purchasing 100 shares of Apple Inc.

Trading fees to purchase 100 shares of Apple Inc (USD)*

What the above chart shows is how the fees vary wildly from platform to platform. First National Bank, for example, would charge trading fees of $67 to purchase those 100 Apple shares, as would Old Mutual. For the same purchase Sanlam iTrade would charge $20 and Dutch-based Saxo would charge $15.

Mexem, however, shattered the costs of even their cheapest competitor, charging only $1 for the entire trade. To put it in perspective, Mexem’s fees were less than 2% of the fees you would pay to its most expensive competitor (FNB) and less than 10% of the fees charged by its nearest competitor, (Saxo). This is a substantial and immediate saving for any investor, but especially for serious investors who do multiple trades. Using Mexem as your broker can save a small fortune.

Furthermore, while most other firms charge monthly and/ or annual management fees – 1.5% per month in the case of one of these firms – Mexem does not charge clients any monthly or annual fees. You only pay the trading costs as and when you trade. When it comes to its institutional clients, Mexem takes things a step further by offering institutional almost unmatched rates in this market.

It’s the combination of extremely low trading costs and the broad offering of its platform that allows Mexem to disrupt the South African trading market. This is making Mexem into a platform that cannot be ignored by the serious investor.

*Based on a price per share of $191.05

Trading fees across various platforms for retail clients trading in the US market

Commission per trade Minimum commission (USD)


0.35% of value


Old Mutual

0.35% of value



0.25% of value


Standard Bank

$6c per share


Sanlam iTrade

$3c per share



$2c per share


Mexem (clients with <USD 5000)

$3c per share


Mexem (clients with >USD 5000)

$1c per share


To find out more about Mexem, check out their website at for a full-run down of their products and the services on offer.

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