Welcome to our comprehensive comparison of two leading Canadian investment platforms: Questrade and Wealthsimple. If you’re eager to embark on your investment journey and wondering which platform is perfect for you, you’ve come to the right place.
Questrade and Wealthsimple have carved out significant names in the financial landscape, offering distinct features, services, and investment opportunities. As someone who has personally used both platforms, I want to share my experiences with you today, combining the best of both worlds.
Wealthsimple stands out as a top choice for automated robo-advisor investing, providing access to one of the few commission-free online discount brokerage services in Canada through Wealthsimple Trade. On the other hand, Questrade is the undisputed choice of online brokerage for beginner and active traders, offering robust market data, research capabilities, and its own highly competitive robo-advisor service, Questwealth Portfolios.
This blog post will provide an unbiased Questrade vs Wealthsimple comparison, examining their fees, investment strategies, available products, account options, perks, and pros and cons. Whether you want to try online investing, switch online brokers, or explore robo-advisors, this comparison will offer valuable insights to help you find the perfect investment platform between Questrade and Wealthsimple.
By the end of this blog post, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge you need to make an informed choice, ensuring that your investments align perfectly with your financial objectives. Plus, don’t miss our exclusive promo codes and links to save on either service when you open an account.
Let’s dive in and explore the best features of both Questrade and Wealthsimple so that you can decide on the best investing platform for you.
What is Questrade?
Questrade is an online discount brokerage established in 1999 with a $25 billion asset under management. Its popularity in Canada lies in its low commission, low trading fees, and multiple ranges of accounts. As a result, both beginners, intermediate and seasoned investors in Canada find Questrade attractive for DIY and active management investing.
- Free tax-loss harvesting
- Low management fees
- Several investment options
- Automatic portfolio rebalancing
- Active management
- Ease of use
Established in 1999, Questrade has become a leading online discount brokerage with over $25 billion in assets under management. Its popularity in Canada stems from its attractive features, including low commissions, trading fees, and various account options.
Whether you are a beginner, intermediate, or seasoned investor, Questrade caters to all, making it an appealing choice for both DIY enthusiasts and those seeking active management investing.
Questwealth Portfolios stands out as Questrade’s dedicated trading platform among its offerings. Previously known as Portfolio IQ, it underwent a rebranding in 2018 and emerged as Questwealth Portfolios.
This innovative platform aligns your portfolio with your risk tolerance, achieving a balance through a mix of Canadian, US, and international securities. Whether you’re new to investing or a seasoned pro, Questwealth Portfolios has something to offer. You can read our Questrade Review for more information.
- Free tax-loss harvesting
- Low management fees
- Several investment options
- Automatic portfolio rebalancing
- Active management
- Ease of use
- Commissions on selling ETFs and trading stocks
- $1000 minimum investment requirement.
- Limited research tools.
What is Wealthimple?
Wealthsimple Trade is a great trading platform that offers commission-free buying and selling of thousands of stocks. Its user-friendly interface and mobile-optimized investing dashboard make it easy to navigate and accept various payment methods, such as bank transfers and debit cards. In addition to traditional online stock trades, Wealthsimple Trade allows you to engage in other investment activities. It supports both taxable and registered (non-taxable) accounts such as RRSP and TFSA, and there is no minimum balance requirement when opening an account, making it accessible for investors with little money.
Wealthsimple is a leading discount brokerage that has made a significant impact on the financial landscape since its establishment in 2014. While it may not have the decades of experience that Questrade boasts, Wealthsimple sets itself apart with its composition of world-class technical and finance experts, positioning it strongly in the trading world.
One of the remarkable aspects of Wealthsimple is its commitment to catering to investors of all classes. Whether you prefer to take control of your investments with self-directed portfolio management or seek professional guidance with active portfolio management, Wealthsimple has you covered.
As an investor, you’ll find two major financial products Wealthsimple offers: Wealthsimple Trade and Wealthsimple Cash. Wealthsimple Trade is an exceptional commission-free trading platform with low fees and the added benefit of no minimum balance requirement. On the other hand, Wealthsimple Cash stands out as one of Canada’s best high-interest savings accounts, providing attractive interest rates to help you grow your savings.
- No minimum balance.
- Tax-loss harvesting.
- Zero commission on trading stocks and ETFs.
- International accounts.
- Advanced educational materials.
- High management fee (0.5%).
- Limited account options.
A Quick Glance At Questrade vs Wealthsimple Comparison
Here’s an overview of Wealthsimple vs Questrade to guide your understanding of the similarities and differences between Canada’s two great online discount brokerages.
RRSP, TFSA, RESP, personal (non-registered)
RRSP, TFSA, RESP, RIF, LIRA, LIF, margin, personal (non-registered)
ETF and stocks fees
Conservative, balanced, growth, Halal, SRI
Growth, aggressive, , conservative, balanced, SRI
Website, Android, iOS
SRI: 0.25% -0.4%
0.11%–0.23%: Regular portfolios
0.21%–0.35% for SRI
0.4% or 0.5% per year
0.2% or 0.25% per year
Questrade vs Wealthsimple: Trading Fees
When comparing Wealthsimple Trade and Questrade, it’s important to consider their fee structures. Wealthsimple Trade stands out for its fee-free buying and selling of stocks and ETFs, except for a 1.50% currency conversion fee on USD trades, which is typical for brokerages. In contrast, Questrade does not charge commissions for ETF purchases but does have a $4.95 minimum fee per trade when selling ETFs or buying/selling stocks.
Both platforms impose fees for their services, so users should evaluate their trading needs to determine which option offers the most cost-saving and suitable trading choices. For instance, Questrade levies a 0.25% annual management fee, whereas Wealthsimple’s management fee is 0.4% or 0.5%, depending on the account balance. This implies that users may incur lower yearly fees with Questrade. On the other hand, while Questrade charges for stock transactions, Wealthsimple provides free stock trading on Canadian markets and implements a percentage-based exchange fee for US markets.
Questrade vs Wealthsimple: Account Types
Another crucial factor to consider is the range of investment accounts they provide. Both platforms offer the three most popular investment accounts, including personal non-registered accounts, RRSPs, and TFSAs. However, Questrade goes a step further by offering several additional trading accounts, such as RESPs, LIRA, LIF, RRIF, corporate investment, trust, investment club, and margin accounts.
Wealthsimple, on the other hand, provides a diverse selection of accounts, including RRSP, TFSA, RESP, LIRA, joint, or personal non-registered accounts. While this already offers a variety of options, Questrade expands the choices even further with the inclusion of TFSA, RRSP, RESP, Cash, Corporate Cash, and Joint Cash accounts.
Questrade vs Wealthsimple: Investment Options
When comparing the investment products offered by Questrade and Wealthsimple, it becomes evident that Questrade provides a more diverse range of options.
Questrade’s popular investment products include ETFs, stocks, GICs, mutual funds, options, initial public offerings, bonds, and more. On the other hand, Wealthsimple Trade offers a more limited selection, with only stocks and ETFs available on its app, although it does cover thousands of these assets.
Notably, Wealthsimple does stand out for its inclusion of cryptocurrency trading, offering an advantage over Questrade in this particular area. However, Questrade counters an impressive array of investment opportunities, such as stocks, fixed income, mutual funds, options trading, foreign exchange, precious metals, and contracts for difference (CFD) trading.
This broader spectrum of investments makes Questrade appealing to those seeking a more comprehensive range of assets.
Questrade vs Wealthsimple: Security
Both Questrade and Wealthsimple Trade provide trading accounts safeguarded against insolvency through the Canadian Investor Protection Fund (CIPF).
With Questwealth Portfolios, Questrade offers the same safety measure, assuring that the CIPF insures your deposit of up to $1 million. Moreover, Questrade’s membership with the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) adds an extra layer of security, granting an additional $10 million in insurance on your deposit.
Safety is a shared priority for both platforms, making it a non-decisive factor when comparing Questrade vs. Wealthsimple. Notably, this emphasis on security has contributed to Wealthsimple’s significant success, boasting over 1.5 million users and managing over $8.4 billion in assets.
As with Questrade, Wealthsimple is a member of the Canadian Investor Protection Fund (CIPF), ensuring that deposits of up to $1,000,000 are insured. Additionally, Wealthsimple utilises two-factor authentication (2FA) digital security measures to safeguard your funds and personal information, providing you with peace of mind while investing with their robo-advisor platform.
Questwealth Portfolios vs Wealthsimple Invest: Robo-Advisors Comparison
Wealthsimple Invest is widely recognized as one of the top robo-advisors in Canada, allowing users to create personalized portfolios based on their financial goals and risk tolerance. The program automatically rebalances portfolios if certain industries become at risk, and users can adjust settings like dividend reinvesting, tax-loss harvesting, and roundup investing for spare change on card purchases. Also, Wealthsimple Invest provides financial planning assistance and is supported by the Canadian Investor Protection Fund, ensuring coverage of users’ assets up to $1 million per account.
On the other hand, Questwealth Portfolios, Questrade’s robo-advisor platform launched in 2018, competes strongly in the emerging robo-advisor market. One of its main advantages is its remarkably low management fee, set at just 0.25%, which decreases to 0.20% for account balances exceeding $100,000. Like Wealthsimple, Questwealth employs automatic portfolio rebalancing based on market trends and user preferences, offering a sense of security with coverage up to $1 million per account. However, it’s important to note that Questwealth requires a minimum account balance of $1000, which could be a potential drawback for some investors.
Here are a few comparisons between Questwealth Portfolios and Wealthsimple Invest:
- Minimum Investment: With Wealthsimple Invest, you can start with any amount; there is no minimum requirement. For Questwealth Portfolios, you need at least $1,000 to get started. If you want to take advantage of Wealthsimple’s special offer, you must deposit at least $500.
- Account Types: Both platforms offer different accounts for retirement savings (TFSA, RRSP) and general investing.
- Management Fees: Wealthsimple Invest charges a fee based on how much money you have in your account. If you have less than $100,000, they take 0.50% of your money each year. If you have more than $100,000, the fee drops to 0.40%. Questwealth Portfolios, on the other hand, charges 0.25% for accounts below $100,000 and 0.20% for accounts above $100,000. Compared to traditional mutual funds that charge around 1.98%, Wealthsimple and Questwealth are much cheaper options.
- Extra Account Features: With Wealthsimple, you can use features like “Roundup” to invest spare change or “Overflow” to invest extra cash. They also provide a free tax return software called “Wealthsimple Tax.”
- Platforms: Wealthsimple and Questwealth have websites and mobile apps, so you can easily manage your accounts from your computer, tablet, or smartphone.
- VIP Perks: Wealthsimple offers extra benefits for accounts over $100,000, such as financial planning sessions and lower fees. For Questwealth, accounts with $250,000+ get special treatment, including a dedicated team representative and exclusive promotions.
- Investment Options: You can choose from a range of investment options with both Wealthsimple and Questwealth. They have portfolios for different levels of risk, and they also offer socially responsible investing choices. Wealthsimple also has a special option for those who follow the Islamic Faith, Wealthsimple Halal.
Is Questrade Good For You?
Questrade, established in 1999, caters to a diverse range of investors, from beginners to seasoned professionals. However, it’s essential to consider whether Questrade aligns with your specific needs and preferences.
Questrade is well-suited for investors who value:
- Low-commission and low-fee trading.
- A minimum account balance of $1000.
- Managing their own portfolios (self-directed portfolio management).
- Active portfolio management.
- Socially responsible investing.
Questrade could be a great fit for you if you find yourself among these categories. However, taking a balanced approach and exploring the full picture is crucial before deciding.
Is Wealthsimple Good For You?
Wealthsimple has become a popular choice among investors of all levels since its establishment in 2014. Its user-friendly and self-directed interface makes it particularly appealing to beginners seeking a hands-off trading experience.
With zero minimum balance and commission-free trading, it’s an excellent option for anyone creating a diversified and cost-effective portfolio. Even seasoned investors who appreciate automation may find Wealthsimple’s platform suitable for their trading needs.
However, if you prioritize a brokerage with a low management fee and a wide range of account options, Wealthsimple may not be the best fit. Despite this, Wealthsimple continually updates and enhances its offerings, ensuring it stays at the forefront of the market.
In conclusion, Wealthsimple is a robust trading platform with much to offer, making it worth considering for investors seeking a simple and efficient way to manage their portfolios.
Final Thoughts on Questrade vs Wealthsimple
After comparing Questrade vs Wealthsimple, I can confidently say that both platforms have unique strengths catering to different investors. Questrade is an excellent choice for those who value low management fees and extensive account options, while Wealthsimple stands out with its user-friendly interface and zero-commission trading. As an investor, it’s essential to consider your specific needs and preferences before deciding.
If you’re a hands-on investor looking for a platform that offers diverse investment opportunities and low fees, Questrade might be the right fit for you. On the other hand, if you prefer a more intuitive and automated approach with commission-free trading, Wealthsimple could be the perfect choice.
So, which platform aligns best with your investment goals and style? Take some time to explore both Questrade and Wealthsimple to see which one resonates with you. Remember, it’s essential to make an informed decision when it comes to managing your finances.
FAQs on Wealthsimple vs Questrade
Is Questrade Good for Beginners?
Yes. Questrade is good for investors of all categories, such as beginner, intermediate and seasoned investors. This online discount brokerage has a self-directed investing platform and active portfolio management to meet the needs of newbies and experts in the trading world.
Why Wealthsimple Trade is Bad?
Wealthsimple Trade is considered bad by investors who believe it lacks some trading tools, such as analysis tools and automation tools for buying or selling stocks. However, Wealthsimple Trade offerings are not bad. In fact, they are among the best in the industry.
But depending on your investment objective and risk tolerance, you may find other trading platforms more suitable than Wealthsimple Trade.
Which Trading Platform is Best in Canada?
Wealthsimple Trade and Questwealth Portfolios are among the best trading platforms in Canada due to their trading cost, account offerings, and market capitalization.
Can I Have Questrade and Wealthsimple?
Yes. You can have both Questrade and Wealthsimple accounts, depending on your needs. Although they have many similar offerings, you can find some on Wealthsimple that are not on Questrade. But ensure that you really need the two platforms before joining. Else, you will spend more and earn less.
Can I Trust Wealthsimple Trade?
Yes, you can trust Wealthsimple Trade, as done by over 1.5 million users. Your deposit of up to $1,000,000 on Wealthsimple is insured by the Canadian Investor Protection Fund (CIPF).
With over $8.4 billion in assets under management, Wealthsimple is regulated by the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) and uses industry-standard encryption to secure your funds and information.
How Safe is Questrade?
Questrade is absolutely safe because of its membership with the Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) and the Canadian Investor Protection Fund (CIPF).
Thus, your deposit up to $1,000,000 on Questrade is protected by CIPF with the additional protection of $10,000,000 by the IIROC.
How Much Money Do You Need to Start With Questrade?
You need a minimum deposit of $1000 to start trading on Questrade.
Is Wealthsimple Actually Free?
Wealthsimple is not absolutely free. While Wealthsimple doesn’t charge fees on transfers and trading, it charges a 0.5% management fee.
Is there a Minimum Deposit for Wealthsimple?
Yes, Wealthsimple has a $250,000 minimum daily deposit.
Can I Buy Bitcoin on Wealthsimple?
Yea, you can buy Bitcoin on Wealthsimple through its Wealthsimple Crypto. You can trade Bitcoin and Ethereum through Wealthsimple Trade with no fee on deposits and withdrawals.
Is Questrade the Best in Canada?
Questrade is one of the best robo-advisors in Canada, offering a low-cost investment portfolio. However, Wealthsimple is the major rival of Questrade and is seen by most investors as the best robo-advisor in Canada.