EasyEquities Thrive R25 Fee Introduction

Investing platform EasyEquities has introduced a new fee structure that is stirring discussion among its user base. I was just about to try out EasyEquities, but it seems to add a layer of complication to the process (I don’t think anyone is complaining about the cost, same price as a coffee!), and I might start with Investec’s Clarity platform.

Here’s some more details on it. The Thrive Loyalty Program, previously optional, has become mandatory for all users, with a R25 monthly fee being levied on accounts that do not reach Level 3 within the program. This policy, taking effect from November 30, 2023, means that active traders with higher investment activities can avoid the fee by achieving higher Thrive levels, which offers them additional benefits, including brokerage fee discounts.

Criticism has arisen due to the mandatory nature of the fee, particularly as it applies to lower-level investors who may find it harder to reach the exemption criteria. According to user feedback and financial commentators, the new fee model seemingly favours more affluent investors who can more easily ascend to Thrive’s higher levels, thereby avoiding the monthly charge, while less active users, who might not invest as frequently, are subject to the fee. Concerns have been expressed that such a fee structure could disproportionately impact smaller investors, who are often the ones to benefit most from minimal fee trading platforms.

EasyEquities asserts that the intention behind the Thrive program and the associated fee is to encourage positive investment behaviours. Nonetheless, the decision to impose a compulsory R25 charge has not only sparked debate but also caused dissatisfaction among many clients, raising questions about the implications for the broader investment community, particularly the accessibility of investment opportunities for individuals with limited capital.

Understanding the Thrive Loyalty Programme

The Thrive Loyalty Programme by EasyEquities is a structure designed to encourage and reward positive investment behaviour among its users. It offers various tiers with associated benefits, including brokerage discounts.

Key Features

The Thrive Loyalty Programme is built with several core characteristics aimed to benefit investors. Firstly, active participants can earn substantial brokerage discounts, sometimes up to 100%, on eligible Thrive stocks. This incentive is aimed at fostering consistent and thoughtful investment practices. The programme also introduces a monthly fee of R25, which applies to clients below Thrive Level 3, effective from November 30, 2023. This fee is positioned as a motivator for users to ascend to higher levels within the programme, thus engaging more deeply with the platform’s services.

Thrive Tiers and Benefits

Thriving levels form the heart of the programme’s structure, wherein each Thrive Level represents a step with increasing benefits. Here’s a simplified outline illustrating the progression through the levels:

  • Level 1 and 2: Users at these initial stages are subject to the monthly R25 fee.
  • Level 3: Upon reaching Level 3, users are exempt from the monthly fee and begin to unlock more significant rewards.

The benefits escalate as users climb the ladder within the Thrive Loyalty Programme, incentivising consistent engagement and better investment habits. While specific benefits for levels above 3 are not detailed here, reaching Level 3 appears to be a crucial milestone for users to avoid additional fees and enjoy enhanced perks of the programme.

The R25 Fee Structure

The introduction of the R25 monthly fee by EasyEquities marks a significant change in their pricing model, directly affecting the cost of investment for clients not meeting certain criteria.

Monthly Fee

The R25 monthly fee is a new charge implemented by EasyEquities, set to affect clients differently based on their tier within the Thrive Loyalty Programme. From November 2023, this fee is applicable every month.

Fee Application

EasyEquities deducts the R25 monthly fee from the client’s free cash within their account. If a client’s free cash is insufficient, then shares might be sold to cover the fee, occurring in August and February.

Waiving the Fee

Clients at Thrive Level 3 and above are not subject to the R25 fee, as they are recognised as ‘Thrivalists’. These clients also enjoy additional benefits, such as brokerage discounts that increase incrementally with each Thrive level.

Account Funding and Withdrawals

In managing one’s EasyEquities account, understanding the processes involved in funding and withdrawals is crucial. It directly affects an investor’s ability to manage cash flow, engage with investment opportunities, and maintain a positive cash balance to comply with the new Thrive R25 fee structure.


Investors can deposit funds into their EasyEquities account through various methods, which include electronic funds transfer (EFT), debit card payments, and sometimes credit card transactions. In anticipation of fees or investment purchases, maintaining a funded account is advisable. Funds need to be cleared, which can vary in timescale depending on the deposit method used:

  • EFT: Tends to require 2-3 business days to clear.
  • Debit/Credit Card: Often instant or may take up to 24 hours to reflect in the cash balance.

It’s essential for investors to monitor their accessible cash balance, especially considering mandatory fees such as the R25 Thrive fee can be deducted monthly from this balance.

Withdrawal Processes

When it comes to withdrawals, they typically follow a standard procedure designed to provide security while returning funds to investors. Users must implement withdrawal requests through their online account interface. The steps are as follows:

  1. Log in and navigate to the withdrawal section.
  2. Enter the amount to be withdrawn.
  3. Confirm withdrawal details.

Withdrawal times can vary:

  • Standard withdrawals may take up to 2 business days.
  • Immediate withdrawals are often processed within a few hours but may incur an additional fee.

Withdrawal limits and timescales should be checked within the terms of service or FAQs to ensure expectations are managed correctly. Investors should also be aware that if their cash balance is insufficient to cover the R25 Thrive fee, EasyEquities may sell shares to cover the cost.

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