Germany is developing into a fund savings country. ETF savings plans in particular are in demand because they are simple and inexpensive. But where should investors open their portfolio? The investor portal extraETF has now chosen the best ETF savings plans.

Just two years ago, the number of ETF savings plans in Germany exceeded the two million mark. Today there are almost four million. A new record. The numbers are even higher, as popular neo-brokers Trade Republic and Scalable Capital don’t currently provide ETF market statistics. The investor portal extraETF estimates their ETF savings plan volume at the turn of the year 2022/23 at around two million. This means that around six million ETF savings plans are saved every month in Germany.

“ETF savings plans have established themselves as the best way to build up assets cost-effectively and with a high return,” comments Markus Jordan, CEO and founder of extraETF examined more closely.

In the ETF savings plan test 2023, the offers of 18 online brokers, direct and branch banks were examined. They were evaluated according to the criteria of cost, offer, service and user-friendliness. Result: Four providers are characterized by particularly attractive ETF savings plan offers:

These four providers are also clearly at the top in the FOCUS Online ETF savings plan comparison. First place is currently taken by Trade Republic, whose range is characterized, among other things, by a large number of ETF and share savings plans and a consistent price philosophy. The execution of savings plans is basically free of charge here. Even the usual third-party fee of one euro for the execution of transactions in shares, ETFs or derivatives, which is otherwise usual at Trade Republic, is completely eliminated. In connection with the free deposit, the price-performance ratio for ETF savers is hard to beat.

Additional bonus: Since the beginning of the year, Trade Republic has also been paying two percent interest on credit balances of up to EUR 50,000 in the clearing account.

flatex is also currently offering all savings rates at a fixed price of EUR 0.00 per savings plan. Additional costs, the Additional Trading Costs (ATC), which are also incurred with every order, are not calculated separately. They are included in the price for an order via flatex. In addition, only 0.1 percent is charged annually on the securities held in custody.

In addition, flatex offers its customers a really impressive number of ETFs that are eligible for savings plans. Equity ETFs and bond ETFs from all well-known providers make up the majority of the more than one thousand products. One of the most extensive offers on the market. ETFs from the asset managers Amundi, db x-trackers and Lyxor/ComStage are currently available without additional trading costs (ATC).

Saving an ETF is possible from as little as 25 euros and in four usual intervals. Deposits by direct debit from the reference account are possible up to 1000 euros – but not from third-party accounts. Unfortunately, it is not possible to make the savings rate dynamic, automatic reinvestment of distributions is optional.

According to extraETF, Scalable offers “an absolute maximum of ETFs eligible for savings plans from an equally maximum number of providers” and is therefore at the top of the current broker offers. Equity ETFs account for a good two-thirds of the ETF offering. But investors can also choose numerous ETFs from the bond, commodities, real estate, money market and portfolio segments. All common indices are available, the execution takes place exclusively via the stock exchange operator Gettex.

The different fee models at Scalable take some getting used to. With the “FREE Broker” price model tested by the extraETF, the first savings plan is free of charge, each additional plan is charged at EUR 0.99 per savings plan execution. This model is cheaper for up to three savings plans than the “PRIME Broker” fee model, which costs a flat rate of EUR 2.99 per month with annual advance payment and EUR 4.99 with monthly payment.

With Scalable, ETF savings plans can be executed at different intervals and on different days, and the savings rate can be dynamic with 2, 3 or 5 percent. Automatic reinvestment of distributions is not currently supported. The savings amount – the minimum rate is 25 euros – can also be debited from a third-party account and the amount can be adjusted independently.

Scalable Capital has also recently started offering interest on the deposit balance. There are even 2.3 percent here – but only for customers who also book the “PRIME” account model for EUR 4.99 a month.

According to extraETF, the variety of ETF savings plans offered by ING is also remarkable, and this applies equally to the discounted savings plans from various providers. Here you will find ETFs from Amundi, Franklin Templeton, Invesco, iShares, Lyxor/ComStage, which also contain the most popular indices. In general, stock ETFs and bond ETFs dominate the offering.

No fees are currently charged for the execution of savings plans and, in connection with the free deposit, ING can offer an absolute top value according to the testers. Nevertheless, as with any transaction in the securities sector, there are product costs that depend on the ETF selected and the investment amount. These are management fees that the ING input mask displays in the cost information for the transaction when the order is placed.

Another special feature at ING is the maximum low minimum savings rate of just one euro. Small investors can also become active here. The desired amount can be paid in monthly, bi-monthly or quarterly, a dynamisation is also offered. The possibility of automatically reinvesting distributions and debiting third-party accounts offer interesting options when setting up the desired ETF savings plan. ING offers further amenities with its savings plan search, a savings plan calculator and other tips and information.

Up to 2.3 percent interest – Scalable and Trade Republic: That’s behind the overnight money offers of discount brokers