How to Open a Shares Trading Account in Malaysia

2018-01-13T14:50:04+08:00By |Investing, Shares|

Investment basics on how to choose and open a stocks trading brokerage account for shares investing in Bursa Malaysia.

Updated: Jan 13, 2018

For investing in Bursa Malaysia, you will need a CDS Account and Trading Account which can be opened together when you select a broker.


What is a CDS Account?

The Central Depository System (CDS) represents ownership and movement of securities. CDS accounts allow you to trade securities including shares, REITs, bonds, warrants, and IPOs electronically. For each trading account you have, you will need  a separate CDS account. You must be at least 18 years old to open a CDS account. If there are no activities with your CDS account for 36 months (3 years), your account will be inactivated.

Depending on your broker choice, there are 2 types of accounts:-

Direct Account

  • The shares are held directly by you.
  • You directly receive information on shares related matters (dividends, splits, annual reports, Annual General Meetings, etc).
  • You need to handle the paperwork yourself.
  • You can apply for shares Initial Public Offerings (IPOs).
  • You can directly transfer shares from your CDS to your other CDS or family member’s CDS account.

Nominee or Pledge Account

  • The shares are held on your behalf.
  • Your brokerage/investment firm receives shares related matters on your behalf (i.e. if you want to attend company’s AGM, you must be appointed as a proxy).
  • A small service fee is charged for handling your paperwork.
  • You cannot apply for IPOs.
  • Approval from brokerage/investment firm required to transfer shares from your CDS to your other CDS or family member’s CDS account.


What is a Trading Account?

A trading or brokerage account allows you to participate in buying and selling shares through a broker, who acts as your agent, as you cannot buy and sell shares directly yourself.


Bursa Trading Hours

Bursa Malaysia trading is from Monday-Friday (except Public Holidays/Market Holidays)

1st Session Pre-Opening 8:30 am
Opening and Continuous Trading 9:00 am
Closing 12:30 pm
2nd Session Pre-Opening 2:00 pm
Opening and Continuous Trading 2:30 pm
Pre-Closing 4:45 pm
Closing 4:50 pm
Trading at Last 4:50 pm – 5:00 pm


Brokerage Account Opening

Minimum age: 18 years old

Documents Required for most brokerages

  • 3 copies of NRIC (front and back) for Malaysian, OR international passport if you are a Malaysian Permanent or a non-Malaysian citizen.
    Note: Please use A4 size paper
  • 3 months of bank statements OR saving passbook – certified true copy by bank officer .
  • Latest EPF statement (supporting document).
  • Latest Payslip (supporting document).
  • Account Opening Forms

Account Opening Fees: RM10.60 (including GST)


Brokerage Transaction Fees

Below details are standard fees for both buy and sell transactions. Please check with your brokerage for detailed and confirmed information.

Brokerage Trading via Broker

  • 100k below: 0.60%
  • Above 100k: 0.30%

Brokerage Trading via Online

  • 100k below: 0.42%
  • Above 100k: 0.21%

Brokerage Intraday Trading: 0.10%-0.15%

Intraday Trading: Trades made within a single day. Important for short term traders who opens and closes a position in a day.

Other Fees

  • Clearing Fee: at 0.003% per transaction limited to maximum RM200 per transaction
  • Stamp Duty: RM1 per RM1,000 amount of transaction or fractional part
  • GST: 6% on Fees


Brokerage Account Comparison

There is not a major significant difference in transaction fees for normal trading if you are not trading frequently (e.g. short term trading). If you are trading frequently, you will want to look for the lowest brokerage charges depending on your average trading amount, and if you will be performing intraday (trading within a day) trading at all.

Different brokerages will use different trading platforms/features (PC/mobile app) and each may differ in terms of charting software, research, screeners (stock screening tools), etc

Lowest Online Trading Brokerage Charges

  • Malacca Securities (M+): from 0.05%
  • Rakuten Trade: from RM7 or 0.10%
  • Jupiter Securities: from 0.10%
  • Hong Leong Investment Bank: from 0.10%
  • Alliance Investment Bank: from 0.15%

Lowest Minimum Brokerage Charges per Trade

  • AmInvestment Bank: RM6
  • Rakuten Trade: RM7
  • CIMB Bank (Clicks Trader): RM8
  • Hong Leong Investment Bank: RM8
  • Maybank Investment Bank: RM8
  • Malacca Securities (M+): RM8

Trading Bracket Order Features (i.e. Stop Limit, Take Profit)

  • Jupiter Securities
  • RHB Investment Bank
  • Malacca Securities (M+)

Stop Loss Order vs Stop Limit Order
Stop Loss Order and Stop Limit Order are features that help automate an order once it reaches a certain price. There is a key difference between Stop Loss and Stop Limit. If a Stop Loss is triggered, a market order is placed (where the stock will be sold at market price – which may be higher/lower than the Stop Loss). If a Stop Limit is triggered, a limit order is placed (stock sold when the price level is reached). Do note that if the market gaps down below your Stop Limit, your Stop Limit will not trigger.

Trading Good Til Date (GTD) Feature

  • Affin Hwang Capital Trade
  • AmInvestment Bank
  • CIMB Bank
  • Hwang DBS Securities
  • JF Apex Securities
  • Jupiter Securities
  • Malacca Securities (M+)
  • Rakuten Trade
  • RHB Investment Bank
  • SJ Securities

Note: Most brokerages charge a minimum of RM8 to RM28 per trade. Brokerage charges are typically higher for margin trading.

Margin Trading: Buying shares using borrowed money from the broker. The loan collateral is the cash and shares in the investor’s account.

Other Brokerage Considerations

  • Minimum balance required to open/hold in your account
  • Cash and/or collaterised account
  • Cash balance interest earnings
  • Online funds transfer (deposits/withdrawals)
  • Trading tools and materials (charting software, screeners, research reports, etc)
  • Overseas brokerage trading

Do not just choose a broker based on the lowest fees but also consider your needs, the broker’s reputation and ability to serve you, and your relationship with the broker.


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  1. che ahmad farisi September 7, 2017 at 10:39 am - Reply

    can we trade online ourselves without using a broker.

    Hi Farisi, you will need a brokerage account but you can execute all the trades online yourself.

    Example of a low cost brokerage account

  2. Albert October 24, 2017 at 2:43 pm - Reply

    Hi, can you tell which brokers that you can register fully online? You don’t have to be physically there

    Hi Albert, online-based brokers include Rakuten, Jupiter & M+

  3. Chen November 7, 2017 at 8:19 pm - Reply

    Hello, may I know what is the minimum balance required to open/hold in my account?

    Hello Chen, It depends on your brokerage. Most Malaysian brokerages do not require any initial funds during account opening. But your account will be deactivated after some time if there is no activity and balances. Some brokers may also charge fees if your account value is below a certain amount (i.e. RM1,000). Additionally, if there’s no activity in your account for 36 consecutive months even if there’s value, your CDS account will be deemed inactive thus unable to trade or perform outward transfers.

  4. Nabil January 13, 2018 at 1:56 pm - Reply

    Hi, may I know where did you find information regarding brokers that support Trading Bracket Order Features? I’ve been looking for brokers that support “Stop loss” feature, however best I can find so far is RHB. Even so, their “stop order” feature doesn’t seem to be flexible enough, where it only supports Stop Limit, but no Stop Loss (based on my research). Appreciate your respond.

    Hi Nabil, the information on brokers is from the brokerage providers and traders themselves. You are right that the Stop Loss feature that RHB provides is a Stop Limit Order. Likewise for M+ and Jupiter.


    • Nabil January 13, 2018 at 2:01 pm - Reply

      To make it clear, they only have options “LIMIT” & “STOP LIMIT” for order type, but no “STOP”, which is what I really need. (Btw, I just found Malacca Securities does support “STOP LIMIT” as well, but still no “STOP”)

      Unfortunately Malaysian brokers features are still lagging behind. We have yet to know of one that has a Stop Loss Order and only a few brokers have Stop Limit Order feature.

  5. KW January 28, 2018 at 11:10 pm - Reply

    How to trade foreign market?

    Hi KW, if I understand your question correctly, you can either get a local broker that supports overseas trading in a market that you’re interested in OR open a global brokerage account which has the added benefit of lower transaction fees.

  6. Sky March 13, 2018 at 10:50 pm - Reply

    Hi, do you know which broker in Malaysia are using financial technology (Fintech) ? so far i only know 1 which is Rakuteh. Thanks

    Hi Sky, as far as we can tell only Rakuten has been positioning themselves as a fintech broker & rallied their user base to vote them as fintech company of the year.

  7. Carol May 5, 2018 at 8:24 pm - Reply

    Hi there,

    May I know how long it takes normally to open a share trading account? How long is the processing time?

    Hi there Carol, Once all documents submission is complete it will be approved the next day. Among the fastest processing we have seen so far is with Rakuten Trade which is usually all done online by the next day.

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