Buying Canadian Stocks with Wealthsimple – Is it Free?


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If you’ve ever traded stocks or any other securities in Canada, you’ll likely be familiar with the high fees that big banks typically charge. While there has been some progress, commission free trading hasn’t quite made it to the mainstream markets yet in Canada.

However, just because it isn’t mainstream doesn’t mean it’s not available.

It is completely free to purchase Canadian stocks with Wealthsimple Trade. While Wealthsimple does charge a 1.5% currency conversion fee when buying American stocks, buying Canadian stocks on the Wealthsimple Trade platform will come at no additional cost to you outside of the purchase price.

As you can see from the image below, the current price of a Telus stock is $31.71 which is the exact same cost of my total order ($.01 difference). You won’t see any sort of transaction fee, commission fee or exchange fee. It is completely free.

I’ve personally used Wealthsimple Trade since 2020 and I love it. As someone who invest’s in Canadian stocks all the time (Telus, Dollarama, Scotiabank) – Wealthsimple Trade has been a great platform for me.  If you did want to try them out, the sign-up process only takes a few minutes. (And you’ll get a $50 cash bonus with your sign up).

Start Trading Stocks with Wealthsimple Trade Today ($25)

Earn a $25 Bonus with Sign – Up

  • No Commission Fees
  •  Investors Can Buy Fractional Shares
  •  No Minimum Balance Requirements
  • Beginner Friendly App and Desktop Platform
  • Access to the Crypto Markets

Is it a Good Idea to Buy Canadian Stocks on Wealthsimple Trade?

Well, that depends: do you like not having to pay commission fees when buying Canadian stocks?

If you’re a Canadian stock investor, Wealthsimple provides a solution that not many other brokerages will offer here in Canada.

So in my opinion, it is a great idea to buy Canadian stocks on Wealthsimple Trade if you are looking to get started with investing.

Related Financial Geek Article: 9 Reasons Why Wealthsimple Trade is Good for Beginners

But it’s not just the no commission fees that make Wealthsimple an appealing platform as transaction fees are not the only fees waived by Wealthsimple.

The platform also doesn’t charge anything for opening up a new account, nor for depositing or withdrawing funds. In fact, Wealthsimple offers nearly all of its client services for free including electronic trade confirmations, outgoing transfers to another institution, or even for having an inactive account. 

Now you might be wondering, well how the heck does Wealthsimple make money?

Wealthsimple has a full suite of products that do in fact generate revenue for the company, as I talk about in my article 4 Ways Wealthsimple Makes Money (From Each Product)

Does Wealthsimple Charge Commission on US Stocks?

It’s a great question and one that comes with a bit of a caveat. The answer is no, Wealthsimple does not charge a commission fee for trading US-listed stocks. Wealthsimple does, however, charge a 1.5% currency conversion fee for when you buy and sell American stocks on the platform.

To learn more about what these fees are, my article here breaks down exactly how these fees are calculated. But if you don’t really care about the how, and only want to know the what, then just know that Wealthsimple does charge a small fee for when you trade US stocks on the platform.

But in saying that, Wealthsimple Trade actually just recently came out with a Wealthsimple Plus plan which eliminates that 1.5% conversion fee for when you trade a US stock and instead charges a flat monthly fee of $10.

So if you’re someone like me who buys American stocks on the regular, this premium plan will definitely save you money. I actually subscribed right away when they introduced the new plan, I already really enjoy it.

As you’ll see, I now have CDN and USD funds to use when making my trades. So of course, if I’m buying an American stock like AT&T I’ll use USD and if I’m buying a Canadian stock like Telus, I’ll use CDN.

With all that said, if you only plan to use Wealthsimple Trade to buy Canadian stocks, there is no need to upgrade as buying Canadian stocks is already completely free.

What Does Wealthsimple Not Offer?

Everything we’ve mentioned so far already sounds like we’re trying to make a compelling case for Wealthsimple. And while we do love Wealthsimple here at The Financial Geek, what we really want is for you to make a decision best for you and your needs.

So in saying that, there are some things you should probably know before you sign up for a new account. 

For one, Wealthsimple does not offer the ability to trade options contracts or short sell a stock. These are advanced trading strategies, and Wealthsimple is more focussed on helping young, inexperienced investors who are trying to get their feet wet with investing.

So if you’re looking for a platform that allows you to trade options contracts or short sell stocks, Wealthsimple Trade isn’t for you.

The Bottom Line

Canadian investors rejoice! Buying Canadian stocks on Wealthsimple Trade is completely free.

Not only that, but it also costs no money to sign up for an account, deposit funds or even withdraw funds. So if you are looking to get started with investing in Canadian equities, but would like to avoid those annoying commission fees, I’d recommend Wealthsimple.

Start Trading Stocks with Wealthsimple Trade Today ($25)

Earn a $25 Bonus with Sign – Up

  • No Commission Fees
  •  Investors Can Buy Fractional Shares
  •  No Minimum Balance Requirements
  • Beginner Friendly App and Desktop Platform
  • Access to the Crypto Markets

But whatever you choose, at the end of the day I really hope this article provided you with some value. And as always, if you had any more questions – feel free to contact me.

Geek, out.

Noel Moffatt

Noel Moffatt is the founder and main contributor for his blog - The Financial Geek. Based in Canada, Noel's passion for personal finance has helped him amass over 300k readers to his Financial Geek blog.

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