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I have an American USD bank account and I want to invest my USD under my Questrade TFSA account; best way to do this?

  • Last Updated:
  • Apr 18th, 2018 10:35 pm
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Newbie
May 21, 2017
13 posts
2 upvotes
Toronto

I have an American USD bank account and I want to invest my USD under my Questrade TFSA account; best way to do this?

I did a co-op term in New York last year and I opened up a bank account with Chase Bank to deposit my earnings. I've since graduated and am working full-time in Toronto so I don't see much point in leaving the money in an American chequing account.

I have recently started a TFSA account with Questrade, but they only accept USD transfers from Canadian USD bank accounts (only wires are accepted for American banks, but Chase charges a fee for that).

What would be the easiest way for me to get my money into my Questrade TFSA? Would it be feasible for me to open a USD account with a Canadian bank, or would there be transfer fees involved which would not make it worthwhile?
12 replies
Jr. Member
Dec 21, 2010
175 posts
90 upvotes
Canadian banks accept US checks, just the clearing time may be up to 21 days. Just open a USD account in any Canadian bank, write a check from your Chase account and deposit it to the new account. Later u can link the new Canadian based USD account with Questrade.
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Oct 14, 2009
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Windsor, Ont.
khkchan wrote:
Jul 8th, 2017 1:22 am
Canadian banks accept US checks, just the clearing time may be up to 21 days. Just open a USD account in any Canadian bank, write a check from your Chase account and deposit it to the new account. Later u can link the new Canadian based USD account with Questrade.
Yeah, that's what I ended up doing with my US bank. The clearing time sucks, but there was no better option.

I opened a USD account with Tangerine. I had to mail a direct deposit form to Tangerine to get it signed, and then scanned a copy of the scanned document for Questrade and uploaded it using their website.
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Alternative to 'checks' for an all electronic solution:

1. Open a free RBC Canada USD eSavings account.
2. Follow instructions in this mega thread here to link RBC Canada USD account to PayPal (only one in Canada that works due to them having a NYC routing number for the Canadian bank)
3. Link Questrade with RBC Canada USD account.
4. Link your Chase US account to PayPal
5. Move money from Chase -> PayPal -> RBC Canada

Alternatively you can open an RBC USA account and bypass PayPal since RBC <-> RBC north/south transfers are free and instant.

Or you can just do 1 + check + 3.
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Sep 11, 2006
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ace604 wrote:
Jul 8th, 2017 3:07 am
Alternative to 'checks' for an all electronic solution:

1. Open a free RBC Canada USD eSavings account.
2. Follow instructions in this mega thread here to link RBC Canada USD account to PayPal (only one in Canada that works due to them having a NYC routing number for the Canadian bank)
3. Link Questrade with RBC Canada USD account.
4. Link your Chase US account to PayPal
5. Move money from Chase -> PayPal -> RBC Canada

Alternatively you can open an RBC USA account and bypass PayPal since RBC <-> RBC north/south transfers are free and instant.

Or you can just do 1 + check + 3.
Interesting, does PayPal cost money when moving funds like that? Does it cut down on hold times?

I know there's some way to open both a Canadian TD and US TD account and move USD that way, but the $5000 minimum required to be kept at TD is a fee in and of itself.
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Dec 4, 2008
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ace604 wrote:
Jul 8th, 2017 3:07 am
Alternative to 'checks' for an all electronic solution:

1. Open a free RBC Canada USD eSavings account.
2. Follow instructions in this mega thread here to link RBC Canada USD account to PayPal (only one in Canada that works due to them having a NYC routing number for the Canadian bank)
3. Link Questrade with RBC Canada USD account.
4. Link your Chase US account to PayPal
5. Move money from Chase -> PayPal -> RBC Canada

Alternatively you can open an RBC USA account and bypass PayPal since RBC <-> RBC north/south transfers are free and instant.

Or you can just do 1 + check + 3.
Is the RBC eSavings trick still working? I thought the consensus was it was fixed now?

To piggy back on I guess... there are a few other ways to do USD US <-> Canadian USD bank accounts. But this would be the fastest probably. Currently I'm using a TD Canada Trust US $ Chequing account + TD Bank Cross Border banking account, but there are reasons for my setup and is probably more than what you would need.
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Shadow Rider wrote:
Jul 11th, 2017 2:16 pm
Interesting, does PayPal cost money when moving funds like that? Does it cut down on hold times?

I know there's some way to open both a Canadian TD and US TD account and move USD that way, but the $5000 minimum required to be kept at TD is a fee in and of itself.
Cut down on what hold times? This is just a way to get USD across the border if you have no other way. There's no fee to add funds to PayPal balance from your bank account nor to withdraw.
sports1 wrote:
Jul 11th, 2017 2:28 pm
Is the RBC eSavings trick still working? I thought the consensus was it was fixed now?

To piggy back on I guess... there are a few other ways to do USD US <-> Canadian USD bank accounts. But this would be the fastest probably. Currently I'm using a TD Canada Trust US $ Chequing account + TD Bank Cross Border banking account, but there are reasons for my setup and is probably more than what you would need.
RBC eSavings "fixed" you mean 'not working' "fixed"?

No, it seems to still work for PayPal Canada. RBC seems to be rejecting other institutions sending ACH transfers to them not coded in an international format (IAT, International ACH Transfer) like for example from a US brokerage account -> RBC Canada via RBC NYC fails. Meanwhile PayPal Canada -> RBC Canada in USD visa RBC NYC seems to get coded as "international" and work fine.
POLL: How frequent is your RRSP-matching?
Plastiq: Pay any bill with credit card for 0-2.5% fee (help meet min spending and keep old cards active!)
Rewards program transfer times (e.g. SPG->Aeroplan, Marriott->SPG, Amex MR->SPG...)
Deal Addict
Sep 11, 2006
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ace604 wrote:
Jul 12th, 2017 11:09 pm
Cut down on what hold times? This is just a way to get USD across the border if you have no other way. There's no fee to add funds to PayPal balance from your bank account nor to withdraw.



RBC eSavings "fixed" you mean 'not working' "fixed"?

No, it seems to still work for PayPal Canada. RBC seems to be rejecting other institutions sending ACH transfers to them not coded in an international format (IAT, International ACH Transfer) like for example from a US brokerage account -> RBC Canada via RBC NYC fails. Meanwhile PayPal Canada -> RBC Canada in USD visa RBC NYC seems to get coded as "international" and work fine.
By hold times I just meant that when I deposit a check in Tangerine, Tangerine holds it for something like 15 business days. But if I transferred US Bank -> PayPal -> RBC Canada, would the entire process to when I can get the funds released faster than 15 business days in your experience?
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Dec 4, 2008
1188 posts
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ace604 wrote:
Jul 12th, 2017 11:09 pm
Cut down on what hold times? This is just a way to get USD across the border if you have no other way. There's no fee to add funds to PayPal balance from your bank account nor to withdraw.
RBC eSavings "fixed" you mean 'not working' "fixed"?

No, it seems to still work for PayPal Canada. RBC seems to be rejecting other institutions sending ACH transfers to them not coded in an international format (IAT, International ACH Transfer) like for example from a US brokerage account -> RBC Canada via RBC NYC fails. Meanwhile PayPal Canada -> RBC Canada in USD via RBC NYC seems to get coded as "international" and work fine.
Ah, okay. That's good to know. Previously any account (not just PayPal) would have worked right?
Shadow Rider wrote:
Jul 13th, 2017 9:52 am
By hold times I just meant that when I deposit a check in Tangerine, Tangerine holds it for something like 15 business days. But if I transferred US Bank -> PayPal -> RBC Canada, would the entire process to when I can get the funds released faster than 15 business days in your experience?
Cheques from a US financial institution deposited at a Canadian financial institution are subjected to a holding period... 15 days is standard practice. For instance from RBC's website:
Fifteen (15) business days after the first business day of deposit if the cheque or other negotiable item is drawn on a U.S. bank and is deposited at a Canadian branch of a Canadian financial institution;
US Bank -> PayPal -> RBC Canada is near instant AFAIK.
Member
May 5, 2017
317 posts
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I'd check out transferwise. We've been moving some money from US into Canada and RBC's "free" is not so free once you look at the exchange rate they give you. You're better off paying transfer wise and the fees, you'll come out ahead.
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Bafonso wrote:
Jul 13th, 2017 11:16 am
I'd check out transferwise. We've been moving some money from US into Canada and RBC's "free" is not so free once you look at the exchange rate they give you. You're better off paying transfer wise and the fees, you'll come out ahead.
You are talking about doing a currency exchange.

We are talking about moving USD across the border and remaining in USD. No exchange. No fees.
POLL: How frequent is your RRSP-matching?
Plastiq: Pay any bill with credit card for 0-2.5% fee (help meet min spending and keep old cards active!)
Rewards program transfer times (e.g. SPG->Aeroplan, Marriott->SPG, Amex MR->SPG...)
Deal Guru
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BC
Shadow Rider wrote:
Jul 13th, 2017 9:52 am
By hold times I just meant that when I deposit a check in Tangerine, Tangerine holds it for something like 15 business days. But if I transferred US Bank -> PayPal -> RBC Canada, would the entire process to when I can get the funds released faster than 15 business days in your experience?
It would take a couple days for each step with PayPal. I haven't paid much attention lately since I have RBC setup on both sides for the past year almost now and can do North and South transfers instantly :)

You might run into limit issues if you are trying to move large amounts at once though. I don't know what those might be. A few $k might be ok. $20k might not?
POLL: How frequent is your RRSP-matching?
Plastiq: Pay any bill with credit card for 0-2.5% fee (help meet min spending and keep old cards active!)
Rewards program transfer times (e.g. SPG->Aeroplan, Marriott->SPG, Amex MR->SPG...)
Sr. Member
Apr 24, 2013
579 posts
288 upvotes
Toronto
Will this work with RBC DI? do they accept direct investing into the USD portion from a USD bank account?
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