Best Investment Apps in Canada for 2020
|Wealthsimple Invest & Cash||Overall Investing App|
|Questrade||Free ETF Purchases|
|Wealthsimple Trade||New DIY Investors|
Best Overall Investing App: Wealthsimple Invest
As a FinTech leader, it’s no surprise that Wealthsimple has an exceptional investing app that’s super-sleek, easy-to-use, and iOS and Android compatible. With the Wealthsimple Invest app, you can do everything under one roof: use this Canadian investment app to open an RRSP, TFSA, RESP, or non-registered account, set up automatic deposits, and make adjustments to your portfolio. You can also access unique Wealthsimple products like Halal Investing (offering investments that comply with Islamic law), high-interest savings accounts, and socially responsible portfolios. This Canadian investment app also creates colourful charts with “deposit insights” to track your goal progress.
All things considered, the Wealthsimple Invest is our top choice for the best investing app in Canada. BTW, now is a great time to sign up because Wealthsimple is offering Young & Thrifty readers an exclusive deal: get a $50 cash bonus when you open and fund a new account with $500.
Best for Free ETF Purchases: Questrade
The Questrade app is an excellent tool that enables DIY investors to manage investments on the fly. After downloading the app and logging in, you can place trades in real-time at a low cost of $4.95 up to a maximum of $9.95 for stocks. All ETF purchases are free – which means you can build an investment portfolio on a shoestring. You can also access your investment details and view your account history, or use the app to withdraw money from your Questrade account or transfer money between accounts. Questrade offers a wide variety of different account types, including RRSPs, TFSAs, non-registered, RESP, LIRA, RIF, Margin, and Corporate accounts, as well as powerful research tools like real-time quotes. This app is essential for experienced DIY investors.
The Wealthsimple Trade app, is the only app where you can buy and sell stocks and ETFs on any North American exchange for free. It’s the perfect platform for new investors who want to test the “DIY investing” waters without paying a lot in trading fees for each transaction. After installing the app and setting up your account, you can create your own portfolio and compile a watch list of stocks. Once you are ready to buy or sell, you can complete the trades on your smartphone for $0.
There’s no account minimum to open a Wealthsimple Trade account, so you can start trading with as little as $1 once you’ve linked a bank account. The app currently supports RRSP, TFSA, and non-registered accounts – but more account types may be available in the future. See our full Wealthsimple Trade review.
Best for Automated Investing: Mylo
Mylo is essentially the Canadian version of Acorn, a popular app in the US not available in Canada. In a nutshell, Mylo takes your spare change and invests it for you. Mylo does this by rounding up your purchases to the nearest dollar and investing the money into a portfolio of low-cost ETFs. You won’t notice the difference initially, but it won’t take long for the balance of your investment account to grow. Mylo also allows you to set your investment goals and deposit additional funds to help you reach your financial dreams sooner. You’ll need to sign up for an account and link your bank accounts for Mylo to work properly. Expect to pay a fee of $1 per month.
Best for Financial Planning: PocketSmith
If you’re looking for an app to help you forecast the future of your investments at varying contribution levels and rates of return, PocketSmith is an excellent app. It is extremely versatile and gives users the ability to tackle a variety of financial management tasks, like set a budget, track spending, set goals, monitor net worth, and project how much you need to invest and save for the future. But the standout feature? Providing you with a look at your financial health up to 30 years into the future.
The basic version is $0, but to access the best features, expect to pay up to $19.95 for the Pocketsmith app, depending on the service tier you choose. The premium version gives you access to its full range of tools designed to help you handle your money. For all the details, see our in-depth PocketSmith review.
Best Personal Finance and Money Management Apps
Here are a few other personal finance and money management apps that can help you boost your account balance. For those looking to track their income and spending, check out our best budgeting apps.
Best For Automated Savings: Wealthsimple Cash
On the Wealthsimple Invest app, you can also access the newly launched Wealthsimple Cash – a hybrid account for saving and spending that offers a 0.90% interest rate. There are no fees, and you’ll get the benefit of a chequing and savings account rolled into one. You can set up direct deposit for your paycheque, pay your bills, and send Interac e-Transfers to whoever you like. To supercharge your savings, set up the Roundup and Overflow features, which adds spare change to your Wealthsimple account. This app is also Apple Pay and Google Pay compatible — meaning so you can buy just about everything with the wave of your phone.
Best for Savings App: EQ Bank
Got cash to stash? Our top choice for the best savings app is EQ Bank — a high-interest savings account that offers an everyday interest rate is 2.00%*. That’s one of the highest rates in Canada, making this a great option for squirrelling away your savings. What’s also enticing is that EQ Bank recently re-designed their mobile app and it’s pretty awesome. With the click of a few buttons, you can pay bills, transfer money, deposit cheques, set and track the financial goals, and more. It has some top-notch safety features too: use fingerprint authentication or facial recognition to securely access your accounts.
Additionally, there is no minimum balance requirement (though there is a maximum balance of $200,000), and it’s a savings account with no everyday banking fees. EQ Bank Savings Plus Account offers free Interac e-Transfers®, as well as free transfers to other EQ accounts and free bill payments.
*Interest is calculated daily on the total closing balance and paid monthly. Rates are per annum and subject to change without notice.
Best for Budgeting: KOHO
KOHO is a free pre-paid, reloadable card and integrated app that gives real-time insights into your daily spending. It functions like a chequing account but with the benefits of a credit card, even letting you earn instant cash back on all your purchases. Again, this isn’t a traditional investing app, but KOHO can be used to supercharge your investment contributions.
How it works: create an account and load money into your KOHO account via Interac e-Transfer or by setting up automatic payroll deposits. Then, use your KOHO card to make purchases either in person or online. Using the KOHO app, you can analyze your spending, set savings goals, pay bills, transfer money, and check your balance. The app also has a Roundup tool that tops up your purchases by $1, $5, or $10 and applies the difference towards your savings goals.
Above all, you’ll accumulate 0.5% cash back on all of your purchases – which you can allocate towards future investments. KOHO also has a premium version which costs $9 per month but lets you earn 2% cash back on what you spend on groceries, restaurants, and transportation. It takes a little diligence, but this handy app can net you some extra moolah that you can invest.
Paymi is an app that lets you earn cash back rewards when you shop at popular retailers. When you use the Paymi app in conjunction with your everyday spending, you’ll earn from 1% up to 30% cash back at participating retailers including: Zara, Old Navy, Mark’s, Lululemon, La Vie en Rose and Sobey’s. Although it’s not technically an investing app, you can use your earnings to maximize your investment contributions.
Using Paymi is easy. Once you download the app from the Apple or Google store, link your bank accounts, and Paymi automatically detects whether your purchases qualify for you to get cash back. If they do, your cash back total is automatically calculated.
Once you have $2 in your account, you may cash out using Interac e-Transfer, or have the money deposited into your account. You can then add those funds to your investment portfolio, providing a steady stream of cash for investment contributions. Read our full Paymi review.
Investment apps are a great way to kickstart your portfolio and take your savings to the next level. Just know that downloading an app onto your phone is just the first step. You need the diligence and the motivation to keep the momentum going. But once you get started, you’ll see how easy it is. Go for it!
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