This ICICI Direct review will cover all major important aspects you as a trader and investor should be aware prior to open a trading or demat account with them. Although, personally speaking i am not a big fan of many banks private or government who are in broking business due to various reasons, but ICICI direct which is a full-time broker is an exception.
The number speak for itself, ICICI Direct is the third top broker in India after Zerodha and Upstox in terms of total active number of clients as per NSE. As of data for month ending 28, Feb 2021, ICICI direct have about 15,56,314 total active clients.
The point I am trying to make is despite being from a banking background in the era of latest technology we see in trading platforms and the low cost broking structure and a tougher competition from other discount brokers, ICICI direct has made his place.
How they have done it in spite of the steaming competition from other broking companies is due to the structural reforms they have made from time to time and one of the example I recently saw when I received an email from them. Check out the snapshot below:
Needles to say I have an account with them since 2014, the point I am trying to make is, they make changes with respect to the demand.
If you are an active trader or a beginner who knows what exactly going on with recent changes brought by SEBI, Higher Margin won’t be a factor anymore, now the competition among the broking industry is in terms of better trading platforms and lower brokerages plans.
I hope my rationale behind why ICICI direct is the only broking from a banking background is giving the tough competitions, now coming back to the point, let us see what are the services offered by them and whether you should open an account or not.
About ICICI Direct:
ICICIdirect.com is a part of ICICI Securities and offers retail trading and investment services in India. ICICI Direct was founded in the year 2000 and as of now, ICICI Direct have more than 1.1 million active and around 4.8 million in total clients.
ICICI direct has a wide range of financial products and services related to investment banking, institutional broking, retail broking, private wealth management etc.
ICICI Direct has facility to invest in Equity, Derivatives, Commodity, Currency Futures, Mutual Funds, IPOs along other services like Fixed Deposits, Loans, Tax Services, New Pension Systems, and Insurance etc.
ICICI Securities has more than 280 offices across 80 cities in India and they provide trading in both exchanges NSE BSE as well as MCX.
Recently in September 2020 , ICICI direct has partnered with MCX (Multi commodity exchange) to offer commodity derivative trading, however as of now there is only facility to trade in commodity futures and not options but may be in coming days you would see the options trading in commodity segment to start.
Update: (options commodity trading started as well with ICICIDirect)
They are depository participant (DP) for both NSDL and CDSL. Apart from this they have also won Outlook Money Awards for Best Retail Broker of the year 2018,’16,’15 ,Best e-Brokerage house of the year 2014,’13,’12,’11,’09,’07 and many more.
ICICI Direct Review On Margin:
I was afraid to tell the margin offered by ICICI direct due to the recent changes in the margin rules for intraday products in Cash & FNO.
The upfront margin collection in cash segment has been kept at flat 20%, which means now the leverage for all stocks would be 5x also the penalty provision for short-collection/ non-collection of upfront margin in cash segment has been postponed till 1,dec, 2020.
This means regardless of any broker you won’t get more than 5X times margin in equity cash segment and in FNO you need to have the full margin span+exposure to take any position.
However, this will get implemented in a phased manner from Dec,1,2020 till Aug. 2021, so no need to worry as of now. You can read more about it here.
However, if this rules get postponed or any changes get made I am still showing you the current margin offered at ICICI direct.
ICICI Direct offers 2 products named as Margin and Margin Plus to its clients. These are intraday products which means you buy and sell the stock on the same day and cannot be held to the next day. Let us know more about them.
ICICI Direct Margin Product?
Margin is a product offered for intraday trading by ICICI direct. The margin required is as low as 2% of the total trade value. In this product type you can converts the intraday trades to delivery trades. Which means if you trade is profitable and you want to convert it in delivery and take the shares in demat you can do so by giving the full margin.
ICICI Direct Margin Plus Product?
Margin Plus is another product offered by ICICIdirect. You can trade with margins as low as 0.25%. It gives you leverage up to 300 times. Having said that unlike margin product where you do not required to put a definite stop-loss and target for our trade, under Margin Plus it requires you to put a Stop Loss Trigger Price (SLTP) and a target price.
In general regardless of this 2 products you can get some margin benefit in ICICI direct for normal orders.
|Equity Delivery||5x with Interest|
|Equity Intraday||Up to 25x|
|Equity Option||2x for shorting|
As I said the margin won’t be a factor anymore with recent changes, so in my opinion it does not even make sense to look , as it will be going to be equal for all brokers from December ,1,2020.
ICICI Direct Review On Brokerages:
To be very frank I really do not like the brokerage structure for the ICICI direct, first things it is so much confusing that for a normal person it becomes very complex to understand. Secondly I do not understand why they have so many different brokerage plans for each and every segments.
They should work to make this as much simpler as this new discount brokers have made it. So, if we see they have 3 different brokerage plans under which they again have different charges for every segments.
ICICI Direct NEO Brokerage Plan Review:
Update: I think ICICIdirect have listened to the people demands and have slashed the brokerage in every segment. They have come up with new brokerage plan termed as NEO, Here is the new brokerage structure as per ICICIdirect from December 07,2020:
Apart from above segments i.e. equity intraday, Future and options they have also reduced the brokerage in Commodity and Currency segments:
The New ICICIdirect NEO Brokerage In Currency Segment (FNO):
New brokerage would be @ ₹20 per order only. There would not be any brokerage on lots. New brokerage is effective from December 7, 2020.
The New ICICIdirect NEO Brokerage In Commodity Segments (FNO):
New brokerage would be @ ₹20 per order only. There would not be any brokerage on lots. New brokerage is effective from December 7, 2020.
As a reference below old plans are given:
These plans are:
- ICICIDIRECT I-SECURE PLAN
- ICICIDIRECT PRE-PAID Brokerage Plan
- ICICIDIRECT PRIME
Let us see how much they charges for every segments under each different plans:
ICICIDIRECT I-SECURE PLAN
Equity Delivery and Intraday
The minimum brokerage for transactions up to ₹6364 on stocks quoting more than ₹ 10 is ₹ 35 per trade or 2.5% of the trade value whichever is lower. Brokerage on stocks quoting up to ₹10 would be levied at ₹0.05 per share.
|Equity Delivery Brokerage||trade value exceeding ₹6364- .55% or 55 paisa|
|Equity Intraday Brokerage||trade value exceeding ₹6364 – .27% or 27 paisa|
Brokerage in Margin and Margin Plus:
The minimum brokerage for transactions up to ₹ 50000 is ₹ 25 or 2.5% whichever is lower.
|For trade value exceeding ₹50000||.05% or 5 paisa|
Brokerage in Future, Future Plus and Future Plus Stop Loss:
|Brokerage||.05% or 5 paisa|
|Flat Brokerage on other leg of Intraday square off||₹ 50|
Brokerage in Options & Option Plus:
|Brokerage||Rs 95 per lot|
|Flat Brokerage on other leg of Intraday square off||₹ 50 per lot|
Brokerage in Options & Option Plus under Options 195 Plan:
Options 195 plan is for active intra-day Options traders who trade actively & frequently and require pricing that would help to break-even early.
|Brokerage Under 195 Plan for Intra-day trades||Effective Brokerages per lot in||Brokerage applicable as per I-Saver / I-Secure plan per Lot** in ₹|
|** Under normal brokerage, brokerage on 2nd leg in case of Intra-day square off is 50|
Brokerage in Currency Futures:
|Brokerage||.05% or 5 paisa|
|Flat Brokerage on other leg of Intraday square off||₹ 10 per lot|
Brokerage in Currency Options:
|Brokerage||₹ 25 per lot|
|Brokerage on Second leg of Intraday square off||₹ 10 pet lot|
ICICIdirect Prepaid Brokerage Plan:
ICICI Direct Lifetime Prepaid Brokerage Plan:
With Lifetime Prepaid Brokerage Plan you get discounted brokerage rates and you save on your transaction cost. Prepaid brokerage plan comes with a Life time validity of 15 years.
You can utilize the brokerage amount till it is exhausted within the span of 15 years.
You can choose from 6 different plans as per your need. With ICICI Direct Prepaid plans and now you can reap the same benefits with half the price. They have reduced their Plan amount by half ranging from ₹5,000 to ₹1,50,000.
With the revised Prepaid plans now you get a brokerage of 0.25% in cash instead of 0.55% and 0.025% brokerage in intra-day margin, which is, only ₹25 for a ₹1 Lakh trade and get 65% lower brokerage rates in Options at ₹35 per lot. All this comes with a nominal prepaid of only ₹5,000.
You also get the additional benefits such as instant payout when you sell your shares and exclusive research with Prepaid brokerage plans.
With Prepaid plans, brokerage on your future trades will be adjusted against the plan amount and you also get an option to take refund of the un-utilized amount after a year.
ICICIdirect Prime Membership Plan us the new addition this plan gives you.
ICICI Direct offers 3-in-1 accounts which includes ICICI bank account, ICICI trading account, and ICICI demat account. The 3-in-1 trading account gives you the convenience of opening a demat, trading & bank account.
You can seamlessly trade in Shares, Futures & Options, Currencies, commodities, invest in Mutual Funds, IPOs and Life Insurance.
»» Trading Account Opening Charges: Free
»» Trading Account AMC: Free
»» Demat Account Opening Charges: Free
»» Demat Account AMC: Rs 700 PA (Waived for 1st year) Excluding taxes
However, if the Demat account is under Basic Service DEMAT Account (BSDA), no AMC is levied for holding value up to 50000.
What documents are required to open 3-in-1 account with ICICI Direct?
- Address proof
- Permanent Account Number (PAN) card
- Passport-sized colour photographs
ICICI Direct Review On Global Investment Platform:
If you are someone who are interested to invest in US stock market and in companies such as Apple, Amazon, Tesla, Microsoft, Facebook, Google etc. than the wait is over.
ICICI direct recently announce launch of their Global Investment Platform. Now you can invest in your favorite brands listed in US markets and create an intelligent portfolio. Access to global markets helps diversify your portfolio and reduce overall risk. Below are some of the features:
ICICI Direct Other Charges:
|Transaction Charges||0.00280% of Total Turnover|
|STT||0.0126% of Total Turnover|
|SEBI Turnover Charges||0.0002% of Total Turnover|
|Stamp Duty||Depends on State/UT|
|GST||18% of (Brokerage + Transaction Charges)|
What are the charges for Call N Trade facility at ICICI Direct?
The charges are as follows:
ICICI Direct Square-off Timing:
You can trade in Margin ‘Broker Square off’ and ‘Client Square off’ mode transactions any time during the market hours. You can trade in Margin Client square off mode till 3.30 pm (or till the market is open) but you can trade in Margin Broker square off mode till the time the End of Settlement (EOS) process for the day is run.
However, after the End of Settlement (EOS) process for the day is run, you will be permitted to take or square off only Buy positions in Client square off mode and positions can be taken only in scrips for which the facility to choose the Client square off mode is available provided Margin product trading is enabled for the same scrip.
ICICI Direct Review On Trading Platforms:
Icici direct have three trading platforms
- Web based trading platform : Trade Racer web
- Desktop based trading platform : Trade Racer
- Mobile trading platform: ICICI Direct mobile
Trade racer web as well as the downloadable software have similar functionalities. Let us know more about them:
Seamless convenience with Market Scanners, spot real time trading opportunity conveniently by customizing your preferred technical parameters.
Trend Scanner – Easily view all trending scrips in a single window
Trend Scanner is tool based on pre-defined Technical parameters, which tracks Intra-day Price Movement for finding Trending Scrips.
- Pivot : Based on Pivot levels
Live Scanner is tool which tracks New Highs and New Lows for Stocks with Price Movement.
Live Scanner helps you to identify Scrips making :
- New Day High/Low
- New Weekly High/Low
- New 1 Month High/Low
- New 3 Month High/Low
- New 1 Year High/Low
Take Complete control with Market Tracker
Now spot real time trading opportunity conveniently by customizing your preferred technical parameters.
Snap View gives a complete picture for any scrip with following information.
- Quote/Market Depth
- Pivot Levels (Resistances & support level)
- Peer Group
- Bulk and Block Deals
- Gross Delivery data
- Corporate Announcements
Market at fingertips
Equity @ finger tips is a flexible tool which would fetch the scrips on the basis of following predefined search :
|Sr. No.||Predefined Search|
|1.||Stocks with high price momentum|
|3.||Highest – yielding Stocks in Sensex|
|4.||Poor Man’s Stocks|
|6.||Estimated Earnings Upgrade/Downgrade|
|8.||Year’s Top Performers|
|9.||Top Tech Companies|
|10.||Top Revenue Companies|
|11.||Top Profitable Companies|
|12.||Medium and Large Cap Stocks with high dividend yield but low P/E ratios.|
Bulk deals refers to transactions where the total quantity traded in a stock ( whether bought or sold) is more than 0.5% of the number of equity shares of the company listed on the stock exchange. The quantity bought or sold could be through single trade or multiple trades.
Block deals is a trade with a minimum quantity of 500,000 shares or minimum value of Rs. 5 crores, executed through a single transaction on a special “Block Deal Window” The window is opened for 35 minutes in the morning trading hours. SEBI rule states that block deal orders should be placed for a price not exceeding +1 percent to -1 percent of the previous day’s closing or the current market price.
Advance Decline ratio
Advance Decline ratio is market-breadth indicator used in technical analysis to compare the number of stocks that are trading positive with the number of stocks that are trading negative with respect to their previous day’s closing prices.
This widget shows the Advance-Decline Ratio for all NSE & BSE Indices. It shows a color coded bar in which Blue depicts Advances, Red depicts Declines and Grey Depicts No change.
Heat Map is a Tabular representation of stocks for a Group/Index in ascending order of their price movement with respect to yesterday’s closing price. The table is color coded where the negative stocks are displayed in Red background and positive stocks are displayed in Blue Background.
Moving Averages means the average price of a security over a specified time period. The most commonly used are 3, 5, 13, 20, 50, 100, 200 days.
Moving Averages are used in order to spot pricing trends by flattering on large fluctuations. This is perhaps the most commonly used variable in technical analysis. Its data is also used to create charts that show whether a stock’s price is trending up or down.
It keeps your informed about Major American, European and Asian Market Indices.
Gross delivery of shares is the ratio of deliverable quantity of shares to the total quantity of shares traded in the exchange on that trading day.
Deliverable Quantity (gross across client level) : 2,556
% of Deliverable Quantity to Traded Quantity : 58.48 %
You get the similar functionalities on all three trading platforms, however the downloadable platform is much better than other two in terms of seamless operation.
ICICI Direct Additional Charges:
* For each request form – Rs.50
* Extra for each certificate- Rs.3
A fee of Rs 25 for every hundred securities
or part thereof, subject to maximum fee of Rs 3,00,000
or a flat fee of Rs 25 per certificate, whichever is higher.
Reconversion of MF units: Rs 25 per instruction
Closure of Account: Nil
Pledge Creation/Closure/Confirmation/ Invocation:
* If, ICICI Bank is counterparty – 0.02% (Minimum Rs 25 and Maximum Rs 25,000)
* If, ICICI Bank is not counterparty – 0.04% (Minimum Rs 35 and Maximum Rs 25,000)
Additional Account Statements : Rs.20
Is Icici direct good for trading?
Yes, Icici direct is just next to the zerodha and have all the requirements to be called as good for trading, investing as well as banking.
Is Icici demat account good?
Yes, Icici direct has backing of ICICI bank and their demat services are quite seamless and easy to use.
Is ICICIdirect NSDL or CDSL?
ICICI direct have DP service with both NSDL as well as CDSL
What is ICICI Demat account minimum balance?
There is no minimum balance required for ICICIdirect Demat account for the first year, from second year there is a charges of 700 (p.a.) however you can use BSDA (BASIC SERVICE DEMAT ACCOUNT) under which the charges are as low as 100.
Is Zerodha better than ICICI direct?
To be very honest in my opinion Zerodha is better than ICICI, in terms of new innovation they have done in brokerage and trading platform. Having said that, ICICI Direct is much better for people who not only do intraday trade but make other investments, such as investment in US markets or ELSS, PPF, SIP’s, FD, RD, ETF’s etc., or looking for Loans or credit cards, Insurance etc.
Moreover, you can get research reports related to stock market, stock recommendation, IPO/NFO reports and much more, There are so many things you can do with ICICIDirect at one place which is not at all possible with ZERODHA.
So, all in all It really depends on what exactly are you looking to do, ICICIDirect is like a supermarket where you will find everything related to financials services, where as Zerodha as of now is only dedicated towards intraday trading and investing in stock market.
My Opinion On ICICI Direct:
I have tried to cover all ICICI Direct important aspects one need to know, before opening an account. What makes ICICI direct different from other is the strong hold and backup from ICICI Bank, India’s top private bank. Other than this there are no charges to open an account so nothing to lose.
|Moreover, ICICIdirect has also tied up with Sensibull, India’s first and largest Options Trading platform. Sensibull offers easy to trade, smart and profitable pre-built Options Strategies for your prediction.|
|All these strategies come with small losses and loss protection, so no matter where the market goes, your losses won’t go above a small fixed number.|
|More Features from Sensibull|
Secondly, the kind of technological advancement in there trading platforms, apart from this they also offer PMS (portfolio management services), insurance, loans, gold investment, research advisory, mutual funds, ETF and lot more.
If I have to rate the ICICI direct in comparison with other brokers, I will give 8.9 out of 10. So, go ahead and open an free account now. There is no better deal you can get apart from ICICIDirect as an full-time broker.
Do read this amazing stock market guide designed specifically for beginners to clear the concepts in easy language.
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