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HSBC InvestDirect investment platform review

We analyse the charges levied by HSBC InvestDirect and ask whether the investment platform provides good value for investors

In this article
What is HSBC InvestDirect? Is HSBC InvestDirect good or bad? What do customers say about HSBC InvestDirect? What are HSBC InvestDirect's charges? Who is HSBC InvestDirect good for?
Who is HSBC InvestDirect expensive for? What accounts and services does HSBC InvestDirect offer? Is your money safe with HSBC InvestDirect? Get top money-saving tips from Which?

What is HSBC InvestDirect?

HSBC presents DIY investors with a slightly disjointed investment platform offering, with fund investing available through its 'Global Investment Centre' brand and a wider range of stocks, trusts, gilts and funds under its InvestDirect banner.

This article will focus mainly on the InvestDirect service. You'll need to be an HSBC current account customer and registered for online banking to get started.

Is HSBC InvestDirect good or bad?

To get an idea of how good or bad HSBC InvestDirect is, we asked its customers.  

Which?'s rating for customer satisfaction is based on feedback from real customers. We ask investors to rate their current platform for the quality of its online tools, customer service, and investment opportunities. We also ask if it meets their needs, is value for money and whether they'd recommend it to someone else.

However, to be named a Which? Recommended Provider (WRP), customer satisfaction alone won't suffice; we also consider platform fees. 

Members can log in to see our review of HSBC. If you're not already a member, join Which? and get full access to these results and all our reviews.

Aspect of service Star rating
Online tools

3 out of 5

Customer service

3 out of 5

Investment information

2 out of 5

Available investments meet my needs 

3 out of 5

Value for money

3 out of 5


What do customers say about HSBC InvestDirect?

  • 'I have banked with Midland Bank/HSBC for 65 years. Online banking since pilot study in 1999, so I am familiar with and confident with them.'
  • 'They need to improve their share dealing service - though it is cheap.'
  • 'Cannot access my investments online as I do not bank with HSBC. Valuation paperwork is very confusing. Telephone contact is tortuous. Charges seem high, but difficult to see what they are.'

Check out our guide on the best and worst investment platforms to see how HSBC compared with AJ Bell, Hargreaves Lansdown and other investment platforms.

What are HSBC InvestDirect's charges?

Annual charges

  • £42 (£10.50 quarterly account fee)

Trading charges

  • £10.50 to trade UK shares and investment trusts online, falling to £7.95 for frequent traders
  • £39.95 for gilts
  • €29.95 for shares denominated in euros
  • $29.95 for US Shares
  • £15 per line of stock to transfer out

We’ve estimated the cost of investing various sums with HSBC over the course of a year in the table below. The costs assume you only buy funds (shares work out slightly cheaper with some companies), and make four purchases and four sales each year.

Amount invested Annual cost
£5,000 Logged out detail
£10,000 Logged out detail
£25,000 Logged out detail
£50,000 Logged out detail
£100,000 Logged out detail
£250,000 Logged out detail
£500,000 Logged out detail
£1m Logged out detail

Source: Analysis by Which? Money correct as of April 2020

Read our comparison of investment platform charges to see how much investing with HSBC costs for a range of portfolios.

If you're thinking of using HSBC to take an income from your pension in a drawdown plan, read our comparison of pension drawdown charges

Who is HSBC InvestDirect good for?

With its fixed fee, HSBC will be more suitable for investors with medium to large portfolios (over £50,000), who trade infrequently.

However, given HSBC's poor customer scores and limited choice of investments, such investors may be better off looking at fixed fee brokers Halifax Share Dealing and Interactive Investor.

Who is HSBC InvestDirect expensive for?

Investors with small to medium portfolios who trade frequently will lose out as a result of HSBC's fixed-fee structure with its fixed trading costs.

Such investors should consider Which? Recommended Providers AJ Bell and Vanguard.

    What accounts and services does HSBC InvestDirect offer?

    The information below gives an at-glance view of the key things that the accounts and services HSBC InvestDirect offers. 

    Elements marked with a are offered by HSBC InvestDirect and those marked with a are not.


    General investment account


    A general investment account that can hold different types of investments but doesn’t give tax-free benefits like pensions and Isas.


    ✓ Stocks and shares Isa


    A stocks and shares Isa is a tax-free account that allows you to put your money in a range of investments.


    ✓ Advisory services


    Via Wealth Advice Centre or Premier Financial Advice. Advisory services allow you to access professional investment advice. 


    ✓ Banking services


    Through your HSBC current account. Banking services allow you to operate bank accounts, make transfers and make payments.


    ✓ Savings account


    A savings account is somewhere you can put your money so it can grow in value. 


    ✘ Junior Isa


    A junior Isa is a tax-free savings account for under 18s.




    A Sipp is a pension where you have complete control over the investments you put your savings into.


    ✘ Lifetime Isa


    A lifetime Isa is a tax-free savings or investment account designed to help people aged 18-39 buy their first home or save for retirement. 


    ✘ Annuity


    An annuity is an insurance product which allows you to swap your pension savings for a guaranteed regular income that will last for the rest of your life. 


    Income drawdown


    Income drawdown allows you to take money out of your pension to live on in retirement.

    Is your money safe with HSBC InvestDirect?

    If HSBC went out of business, you would be compensated by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS).

    The FSCS will cover up to £85,000 of investments per person, per platform. You can claim for free online: there’s no reason to use a claims management company.

    You won’t be compensated for investments falling in value, or a company in which you hold shares goes bust, unless this poor performance resulted from bad advice given by a regulated Independent Financial Advisor that has since gone bust. 

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