Market strength encourages investors to get online

New investors trading shares online for the first time is at a five-year high, research reveals.

Data from Investment Trends' 2015 First Half Online Broking Report, found that 65,000 new investors placed trades in the first six months of the year, with Investment Trends analyst, Irene Guimatsia, reported the inflow of first timers was "the highest since 2010".

"The strong performance of the Australian share market to April encourage 65,000 Australians to place their first ever online share trade in the six months to June 2015, breathing new life into a market that had been flat over the previous year," she said.

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The report found that a further 65,000 previously dormant traders had place trades in the first half of the year, while 105,000 accounts fell dormant during the same period.

Investment Trends found that CommSec and nabtrade were the top performers when it came to winning over first time traders, with new account holders helping CommSec increase its share of primary relationships with online traders by three percentage points.

While nabtrade increased its share of primary relationships by two percentage points, pushing it ahead of Westpac Online Investing, as the third most third most used broker among all online investors.

Guiamtsia said that nabtrade's integrated international share trading platform, launched in April, put it in a strong position to capitalise on a strong latent demand for overseas equities.

"When we combine the immense untapped opportunity and the increasing importance of accessing international shares among switchers, nabtrade's strong early take-up could be just the start for them, in this emerging segment of the market," she said.

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