Questrade Crypto Review + $50 Bonus

January 21, 2024
Reviews

Questrade is a Toronto-based online brokerage and wealth management firm that specializes in the trading of stocks, ETFs, and mutual funds. Investing in cryptocurrencies through Questrade Crypto is feasible if you invest in crypto ETFs, though you won't be able to buy and sell Bitcoin directly, nor will you be able to move crypto on and off the platform.

For a better overall trading experience with significantly lower fees, I recommend opening an account with Kraken, my #1-ranked Canadian crypto exchange. Kraken has 250,000+ satisfied users, charges very low trading fees, and is offering a $10 signup bonus (no referral code required) from now until May 25, 2024.

What Is Questrade?

Questrade is a Toronto-based online brokerage and wealth management business that's also Canada's largest discount broker. Stocks, options, bonds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), and mutual funds are all available to trade on Questrade.

Contracts for differences (CFDs) and forex trading are also offered, but you'll need to use a separate platform to trade those.

If you plan to open an account with Questrade, use our Questrade offer code for a $50 signup bonus.

Can You Use Questrade To Invest In Cryptocurrencies?

Technically, you can't invest in cryptocurrencies directly using Questrade. You can only do so indirectly by investing in one of the crypto ETFs Questrade supports.

When you invest in crypto exchange-traded funds (ETFs), you aren't actually buying the digital asset. Instead, you're investing in a stake from a conglomerate that owns underlying positions in the asset.

This is not the same as holding a cryptocurrency yourself, as you're essentially buying shares in a company that mirrors the performance of the crypto that you're investing in.

Put another way, if you purchase a commodity such as BTCC on Questrade, you're not really acquiring Bitcoin. This should be obvious since you're not transferring Bitcoin to a digital wallet or using a crypto exchange or OTC exchange to buy and sell crypto; you're just buying and selling shares to a fund in fiat currency instead.

Despite the above, your account balance will show any gains or losses Bitcoin incurred because you invested in an ETF that tracks Bitcoin's performance.

Trade crypto with the lowest fees

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What's The Difference Between Crypto ETFs and Owning Crypto Assets Directly?

There are several key differences between investing in crypto ETFs and purchasing cryptocurrencies yourself directly.

For starters, you don't have to get a personal crypto wallet or worry about losing your private keys, and ETFs are also an excellent way to increase cryptocurrency exposure and diversification in your portfolio. They also legitimize the most popular digital assets around today by allowing them to be bought via regulated channels.

However, you don't actually receive the private keys to the cryptocurrencies you're investing in since they are kept by the fund in which you're investing. Because of this, you can't use crypto purchased through an ETF to make purchases with cryptocurrencies.

This is the case even if you have $1 million worth of Bitcoin in an ETF on Questrade. If anyone else around the globe needed payment from you to be made in Bitcoin, you wouldn't be able to use any of those funds.

Also, crypto ETFs have greater fees compared to investing in crypto through cryptocurrency exchanges, which eat away at your investment returns over time. Also, because crypto ETFs are so new, their long-term viability is uncertain.

The Top 3 Crypto Exchanges In Canada

Trading crypto via ETFs or index funds is not an issue if you view crypto as a means of gaining wealth. However, if you are a forward-thinking person who wants to use digital assets as a means of payment, then you'll need to look for another platform in order to invest in digital assets.

For this purpose, there simply isn't a better option than using a cryptocurrency exchange. Crypto exchanges allow you to buy, sell, and trade different types of cryptocurrency coins directly using fiat currencies (like CAD or US dollars). They also let you use your own crypto wallet for keeping the cryptocurrencies that you acquire.

Here are some of the top crypto exchanges to use in Canada:

1. Kraken – Best In Canada & Lowest Fees

Best In Canada
Kraken

Total Fees: ~0.16%
Security: Best in class
Customer Support: Excellent

By far the lowest fees in Canada.

★★★★★

Rated 4.9/5

Based in the U.S. and regulated by FINTRAC in Canada, Kraken is undoubtedly the best crypto exchange in Canada. Founded in San Francisco back in 2011, Kraken outperforms the smaller Canadian crypto exchanges due to its significantly lower fees, better customer support, and superior overall trading experience.

For starters, Kraken's fees are far lower than any Canadian exchange, with most users paying 0.16% per transaction (fees decrease down to 0% if you trade high volumes). Kraken's spreads are also absurdly low, typically around $0.10 per Bitcoin, which is 0.0003%. Compare that with the other Canadian exchanges—which routinely charge up to 2% in commissions plus an additional 2% or more in spreads—and it's easy to see why Kraken is such a popular exchange.

Kraken also has better customer support than any other Canadian exchange, and is the only exchange in Canada offering telephone support (available in English, French and Spanish). It supports 100+ cryptocurrencies and has a world-class trading platform and mobile app that's powerful yet easy to use.

If that wasn't enough, Kraken's trading platform is far more professional and robust than its Canadian peers, offering features like NFT trading, staking and support for a wide range of fiat currencies including CAD, USD, EUR, and more.

Overall, Kraken is the best fit for most Canadian crypto investors because it has lower fees, better support and a better trading platform overall. If you're looking to start trading crypto in Canada, we strongly recommend Kraken.

Features

  • Extremely low trading commissions (0.16%)
  • Extremely low spreads (0.0003%)
  • Trade 100+ cryptocurrencies
  • Stake 100+ cryptocurrencies
  • Simple, intuitive user interface
  • Kraken Crypto Watch allows you to keep track of the crypto market
  • NFT trading inside the Kraken app
  • 24/7 customer support via phone, email and live chat
  • Plenty of free educational resources available to users
  • 95% cold storage policy
  • Regulated by FINTRAC

Cost

  • Trading Fees: 0.16% (spot trades cost 0.26%)
  • Spreads: 0.0003%
  • Fiat Deposit Fee: 0%
  • Fiat Withdrawal Fee: $10 CAD

Best For

Canadian cryptocurrency investors looking to trade with the industry's lowest fees.

2. Bitbuy – $50 Signup Bonus

Strong Security
Bitbuy

Trading fees: 2% (High)
Security: 99% cold storage
Signup bonus: $50

Higher fees, strong security.

★★★★

Rated 4.2/5

Bitbuy is a decent backup option for Canadians in need of a crypto exchange.

Bitbuy user accounts are verified instantly, but its customer support has degraded over time, and trading fees are quite high at 2%, more than 10x that of Kraken.

To date, Bitbuy has processed more than $4 billion in trades across its 450,000+ Canadian users. It's a Registered Marketplace and Investment Dealer as recognized by the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC), which means it's a highly safe and secure exchange that offers deep liquidity on all order sizes.

I've personally used Bitbuy for over a year, so I've seen them change their platform over time. For example, Bitbuy recently removed its fees on deposits, making the overall trading experience less expensive for users. However, they increased their trading fees to 2% around the same time, negating most or all of those cost savings.

For a limited time, Bitbuy is offering a $50 bonus to Yore Oyster readers who fund their account with $250 or more. If you’re looking for a highly-respected exchange that offers great customer service and a slick mobile app, open a Bitbuy account today.

Features

  • Easy to use for both beginners and more advanced traders
  • Supports 25+ cryptocurrencies
  • Customer support via live chat and email
  • Powerful mobile app (rated 4.6/5 on the App Store)
  • 99% cold storage policy keeps your crypto extra secure

Cost

  • Account Opening: Free
  • Trading Fees: 2%
  • INTERAC Deposits: Free
  • INTERAC Withdrawals: 1.5%
  • Bank Wire Deposit: Free
  • Bank Wire Withdrawal: 1.5%
  • Credit Card Transactions: 6.25%

Signup Bonus

$50 bonus when you deposit $250 using the link below

Best For

Investors looking for a smooth trading experience (though be aware of high fees).

Although these are some of the most popular exchanges in Canada, there are also other options like Bitbuy, Newton and Shakepay, with the latter two being some of the most expensive exchanges on the list (albeit not as expensive as the fees you'll pay for investing in an ETF through Questrade).

In Summary

Questrade is a Toronto-based online brokerage and wealth management firm that specializes in the trading of stocks, ETFs, and mutual funds. Investing in cryptocurrencies through Questrade Crypto is feasible if you invest in crypto ETFs, though you won't be able to buy and sell Bitcoin directly, nor will you be able to move crypto on and off the platform.

For a better overall trading experience with significantly lower fees, I recommend opening an account with Kraken, my #1-ranked Canadian crypto exchange. Kraken has 250,000+ satisfied users, charges very low trading fees, and is offering a $10 signup bonus (no referral code required) from now until May 25, 2024.

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