Wealthsimple debuted with a robo-advisor back in 2014 with a relatively simple mission: bridge the gap between Millennials and investing.
They’ve been successful, to say the least. As of this year, Wealthsimple currently manages $5B of Canadians’ money. They’ve also launched their very own online brokerage and purchased a popular no-cost income tax service in the meantime.
Now, Wealthsimple announced that it would further its accessibility with Wealthsimple Cash, a unique hybrid bank account. The spending-savings account combination is making quite the splash, with the potential to redefine the Canadian personal finance landscape.
What is a Hybrid Bank Account?
Hybrid bank accounts, like Wealthsimple Cash, incorporate features from high-interest savings accounts and chequing accounts to create a flexible, all-in-one personal banking product.
You can think of a hybrid bank account as a chequing account with high-interest, or, a savings account with chequing account features.
What is Wealthsimple Cash and how does it work?
Formerly known as Wealthsimple Save, Wealthsimple Cash is a hybrid bank account.
A Wealthsimple Cash account provides a spending account (with unlimited transactions, e-transfers, and deposits), a high-interest savings account (with 0.90% interest on deposits), and a Visa-Debit (that works like a pre-paid, reloadable credit card) in one neat little package. It’s most appropriately described as a pre-paid account.
Wealthsimple Cash is a one-size-fits-all kind of bank account. Customers can receive their employment earnings through direct deposit, so there’s no rush or pressure to move your savings into an account immediately.
There’s also a joint account feature upon sign-up, meaning you or someone close to you can both reap the benefits of this virtually limitless account.
Wealthsimple Cash offers unlimited e-transfers and transactions. That means everything from Interac e-transfers and bill payments to account transfers to point-of-sale transactions. All activities in the account occur at no cost to the user.
The perks of no account fees go above and beyond the average person’s expectations as well. ATM access comes at no additional cost, regardless of what bank’s ATMs you’ll be using. Wealthsimple will reimburse you for the fee charged by the ATM. Of course, the limit caps monthly, but it is indeed a unique and rare customer-friendly feature.
When it comes to convenience, Wealthsimple Cash offers everything a regular bank account does. Customers can do their daily banking using Wealthsimple’s incredibly user-friendly mobile app. There’s also an online platform for finance management.
You can send free, unlimited Interac e-transfers from anywhere, manage your finances, or make contributions to the account of your choosing—no matter where you are.
But wait, it gets better! Wealthsimple Cash is compatible with Apple Pay and Google Pay.
Though, we doubt you won’t jump at every opportunity to use Wealthsimple Cash’s sleek, tungsten debit card—after all, it’s made of solid metal.
Wealthsimple Cash vs. other hybrid accounts
Wealthsimple Cash might not be the first hybrid bank account in Canada, but it’s undoubtedly the first to offer this much flexibility. Below, we’ll review what Wealthsimple Cash has to offer in comparison to other hybrid accounts currently available, with options from EQ Bank, Manulife, and KOHO.
|Features||Wealthsimple Cash||EQ Bank Savings Plus Account||Manulife Advantage Account||KOHO||
IC Savings Perfetto Account
|Interest rate||0.90%||2.00%||1.50%||0.5% to 2%||1.75%|
|Interac e-transfers||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited with a minimum balance of $1,000||Free over $20.00||Unlimited with a monthly fee|
|Transactions||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited with a minimum balance of $1,000||Unlimited||Unlimited with a monthly fee|
|Account Fees||None||None||Unlimited with a minimum balance of $1,000||$0 – $84||$9.95 per month, $6.95 per month for seniors|
|Joint account option||Yes||No||Yes, if Manulife customer||Yes||Yes|
|Apple Pay/Google Pay||Yes||N/A||Yes||Yes||No|
|Online platform/Mobile app||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Credit card option||Yes||N/A||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|ATM reimbursement fees||Yes, with monthly limit||N/A||No||No||No|
|Additional Perks||Robo-Advisor with TFSA and RRSP options||International money transfers powered by Transferwise||Access to the EXCHANGE Network||Cashback on all purchases||Personal Loan options|
Is Wealthsimple Cash safe?
When you open a Wealthsimple Cash account, your funds are held by Canadian ShareOwner Investments INC. a Wealthsimple custodian institution and an insured member of Canada Investor Protection Fund (CIPF) and Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC). So, funds held in Wealthsimple Cash are covered by CIPF insurance up to $1,000,000.