The Bottom Line: Wealthsimple Crypto is a trustworthy platform found inside the Wealthsimple Trade app. They have 20+ cryptocurrencies, high spreads (2.54%), and a 1.48% operational fee to buy crypto. It's very easy to use but it's also expensive and there are no crypto withdrawals available.
I ranked Wealthsimple Crypto 6th place out of 12 crypto exchanges in Canada.
Wealthsimple Crypto Overview
Total Purchase Fee:
3.48% (Mar 01, 2021)
Spread: 2.54% (Mar 01, 2021)
Trading Fees: 1.48% "operational fee"
CAD Deposits/Withdrawals: Free
Crypto Withdrawals: Not Available
BTC, ETH, BAT, AAVE, BAL, BCH, COMP, CRV, DOGE, KNC, LINK, LTC, MKR, SNX, UNI, YFI, and more
Pros & Cons
Wealthsimple is an investment management firm founded in 2014 with a goal to help Canadians make the best investment choices. This company is based in Toronto has over 450+ employees according to LinkedIn. They offer a wide range of financial products outside of crypto such as stocks and ETFs, robo-advisors, tax help, peer to peer payments and more.
Wealthsimple Crypto vs. the Competition
*Total BTC Purchase Fee
Best CAD Deposit Fee
BTC Withdrawal Fee
Network fees minus $5
0.1% / 0.2%
0.80% + $1.25
0.16% / 0.26%
0.1% / 0.2%
*Total BTC Purchase Fee was calculated on Mar 01, 2021 and changes daily. It adds all fees to make a purchase (CAD deposit fees, trading fees, etc) plus the % difference to Google's price of Bitcoin which was the reference price.
This table is up to date as of Aug 13, 2021
Opening An Account
Opening a Wealthsimple Crypto account is similar to opening a bank account so make sure to have your documents ready. The sign up process requires you to verify your identity and can take up to 10 minutes to fill out. Most accounts are verified instantly and you'll be ready to trade.
Who Is Eligible?
- Canadian citizens, permanent residents, or those with a valid Canadian Visa
- If you have a Canadian residential address
- If you're at least 18 years old
Sign Up Requirements
- Email address
- Phone number, address, date of birth
- Government-issued ID
- Social Security Number
Funding & Withdrawals
Wealthsimple Crypto has free deposits and withdrawals by connecting your bank account. There are no e-transfers and the limits for funding your account instantly are only $250 or $1000 if you pay $3/month. There is also no crypto withdrawals allowed which is important to know.
Bank Transfer (EFT)
Up to $250: Instant
Above $250: Up to 5 business days
Bank Transfer (EFT)
Up to $1000: Instant
Above $1000: Up to 5 business days
Bank Transfer (EFT)
2-5 business ays
Crypto Deposits & Withdrawals
Wealthsimple does not allow crypto deposits or withdrawals.
Wealthsimple Crypto is very expensive overall. There are no deposit or withdrawal fees or commissions however, it had a 3.43% spread when tested plus a 1.5%-2% "operational fee" on every crypto transaction.
On March 01, 2021 the total Bitcoin purchase fee was 3.48%. This means every $100 on this test gets you $96.52 of Bitcoin. In the same test, $100 on Newton would get you $99.31 of Bitcoin and NDAX gets you $99.50.
Total BTC Purchase Fee
(Mar 01, 2021)
Operational fee of 1.5%-2% per transaction
Spread (Mar 01, 2021)
BTC Buy Price
BTC Sell Price
Ref. Price Difference
Reference Price (Google)
WS Crypto has an operational cost on top of the spread
Is Wealthsimple Crypto Safe?
Wealthsimple Crypto seems as safe as most Canadian exchanges. They are regulated in Canada, offer 2 factor authentication, strong encryption and store users crypto in cold storage with Gemini Custody. However, the safest way to store your crypto is on a hardware wallet and the main issue is WS Crypto does not let you withdraw your coins off the platform.
Is Wealthsimple Crypto Regulated?
Yes, Wealthsimple Crypto is “Canada’s first regulated crypto platform”. They are regulated by the Canadian securities exchange (CSA).
Is Wealthsimple Crypto CDIC Insured?
Like most crypto exchanges in Canada, your funds are not CDIC insured like a traditional bank account. If Wealthsimple loses your crypto, it's gone. Their website states:
"Crypto-assets purchased and held in an account with Wealthsimple Crypto are not protected by the Canadian Investor Protection Fund (CIPF), the Canadian Deposit Insurance Corporation (CIDC) or any other investor protection insurance scheme.”
Wealthsimple has a live chat function for you to communicate with customer support. You can access it on their website or in your mobile app. There is also a detailed FAQ to help with any issues you may have. If you still need more assistance you can contact them by email and phone here.
Where Wealthsimple Crypto Shines:
Convenience: If you have other Wealthsimple products then it's very easy to open a crypto account and have crypto and stocks all in one place. Their ecosystem of products connects well with one another and the crypto section is just a tap away in your Trade account.
Large Selection of Coins: Wealthsimple Crypto recently added 14 new coins so now there is 20+ total.
User-Interface: They have a great looking mobile app and it's very easy to use
Where Wealthsimple Crypto Falls Short:
Expensive Overall: Wealthsimple Crypto has high spreads (3.43%) and transaction fees (1.50%-2.00%) which makes buying and selling crypto much more expensive than other Canadian platforms
Slow Funding: Wealthsimple has instant funding via bank transfer up to $250 but after that it takes up to 5 business days for your deposit to arrive. Or you need to pay $3/month to get instant deposits up to $1000. Most Canadian exchanges offer free interac e-transfers with up to $10,000 limits
No Crypto Withdrawals: You can not send Bitcoin or cryptocurrencies to an external wallet. Wealthsimple owns your crypto and you just have exposure to the price
If you want to buy cryptocurrencies quickly, for the best prices, then there are are much cheaper options out there like Newton. Wealthsimple Crypto is convenient and easy to use if you already have a Wealthsimple account but it doesn't have competitive prices. To become more competitive they need to work on lower fees, and adding crypto withdrawals to their platform.
Who Should Use Wealthsimple Crypto?
- If you want an easy to use platform and don't mind high fees
- If you already have a Wealthsimple account and don't want to sign up for another platform
Who Should Not Use Wealthsimple Crypto?
- If you don't want to pay expensive fees and spreads
- If you want to withdraw crypto to an external wallet
- If you want interac e-transfer and better funding options
- Crypto, stocks, ETFs in one place
- Easy for beginners
- Get $25 free when you trade $100
Wealthsimple Crypto Alternatives:
- Trade Bitcoin and Ethereum
- Shake your phone for free BTC daily
- Get $10 free when you trade $100