After careful consideration, we have made the decision to no longer support investment advisory services in the US. As a result of this decision, we will be transferring all existing accounts to Betterment over the coming months.
When we launched Wealthsimple in the U.S. four years ago, we sought to make investing human, simple, smart, and extremely low-cost. We have valued your continued support in that mission and enjoyed being your trusted investment advisor over that time.
We are confident that this decision is what’s best for everyone. (Updated: 03/04/21)
I have not yet decided whether I should opt-out of the transfer to Betterment:
Is there any way I can keep my investments with Wealthsimple?
No. Wealthsimple will no longer be providing any investment advisories services in the US.
What portfolio would I be transitioned to at Betterment?
The team at Betterment will be in touch with you ahead of the transfer date for account opening purposes, including ensuring that your portfolio is transferred to a portfolio that is equivalent to the one you have with Wealthsimple.
Like Wealthsimple, Betterment combines powerful technology with personalized advice to offer the best investment tools at the lowest possible cost. While the individual securities in your portfolio will likely change, the overall investment strategy that Betterment implements is very similar to Wealthsimple.
What is Betterment’s Portfolio Strategy?
Like Wealthsimple, Betterment believes in investing in low-cost, globally diversified funds. Please see this article to learn more.
Should I transfer my account to Betterment?
The decision to opt-out of the transfer is entirely up to you. We believe your investments would be in excellent hands with the team at Betterment. Betterment is one of the largest and most established digital investment managers in the country. They combine powerful technology with personalized advice to offer the best investment tools at the lowest possible cost. In the interest of full disclosure, and as noted in our letter with Apex, Wealthsimple will be compensated for the transfer of accounts as part of an asset sale to Betterment.
Will I pay the same fees at Betterment?
The fee you will pay at Betterment depends on the portfolio and plan you decide to use. That being said, the annual fee that you pay for your account will not increase. The annual fee that betterment charges for their investment accounts is 0.25% with a premium option of 0.4% available to accounts over $100k in value. In fact, the average Wealthsimple account under $100k in value will actually see their annual fee drop by half from 0.5% to 0.25%. Additionally, if you proceed with transferring your investment account(s) from Wealthsimple to Betterment there are no associated fees or charges. Betterment also does not charge fees for transfers out. For a full breakdown of Betterments pricing please click here.
What will Wealthsimple do with my personal data following this transition?
Following the transfer, we will safely remove all of your personal information and account data from our database. To be fully transparent, it is important to let you know that we are required to keep records of your personal information for five years. This is a requirement from FINRA retention of records regulations which state a broker/dealer must retain records of identification information obtained from the customer for five years after the account is closed.
Why is Wealthsimple no longer support investment advisory services in the US?
This decision was a result of a strategic review of our entire business. We have valued your business over the years and enjoyed being your trusted investment advisor. However, we are confident that your investments will continue to be in good hands with Betterment.
Will my investments be liquidated before being transferred to Betterment or will they move over in-kind?
If you decide not to opt-out, we will be transferring all of your investments in-kind to Betterment on June 12th.
Why/How are we using negative consent for this transfer?
In order to ensure continuity of services and access to the markets for our clients, we are using negative consent in transferring accounts. With that said, clients will have 3 months to decide if they want to move their account elsewhere.
I have another question about Betterment that was not answered here.
Please see Betterment’s FAQs here for more details.
How will this impact my 2020 tax filing?
It won’t! Wealthsimple is responsible for issuing any applicable 2020 tax forms for your investment accounts, which can be accessed by logging into your Wealthsimple account and navigating to the ‘My Documents’ section in your dashboard. If you have any questions regarding your 2020 tax forms, head over to our Tax Support Centre. It's your hub for information about statements, deadlines, FAQs, and everything else you'll need to make sure your 2020 filing goes smoothly.
I have decided to opt-out of the transfer, or have been notified that I am not eligible to complete the transfer.
How do I opt-out?
We respect your wishes as it relates to your investments. Please reply to the email you received on March 4th with the subject "Important update about your investment account(s)" letting us know of your intent to opt-out of the transfer. Since you do not want to transfer to Betterment, we've outlined your options below.
1. Institutional Transfer Out - You will first need to establish an account at a new institution that matches the same account type that you hold with Wealthsimple. You will then need to contact your new institution and have them initiate a transfer for your Wealthsimple Account, each institution will have its own transfer-out documentation for you to complete. Once you've completed a transfer request with the receiving institution, they will initiate the transfer with our back office. To complete this, they will need one of the monthly statements for your account which can be found in the My Documents section of your profile. Below are our transfer out details if needed:
Clearing Firm: Apex Clearing
DTC/ACATS Clearing Number: 0158
Address: Apex Clearing Corporation, Securities Processing, 350 N. St Paul Str, Ste 1300 Dallas, TX 75201
2. Withdrawal - To make a withdrawal you'll want to go to the Withdrawals section by navigating to the 'Move funds' tab in your Wealthsimple dashboard online, and complete the form with the amount you'd like to withdraw. It will take up to 3 business days to trade your portfolio to generate cash for the withdrawal. During this time the value of your account may change. Once the cash has been generated, it will then take 2 business days to settle before the funds will be sent back to your bank account. This will take 3-6 business days.
3. Indirect Rollover / 60-day Rollover (IRAs only) - You can withdraw all of the funds that you hold in your IRA directly back to your bank account and redeposit them in another IRA or a retirement plan within 60 days, without incurring a tax penalty. Please see this article for more details.
I have an IRA, should I do an institutional Transfer out or withdraw?
There are tax penalties imposed by the IRS for withdrawing your funds from an IRA before the age of 59.5. For this reason, we would recommend transferring your account out either through an institutional transfer out or by completing an indirect rollover as per above.
I have a Personal/Save Account should I do an institutional Transfer out or withdraw?
The funds in your Personal can be removed either by withdrawal or by transferring them directly to another institution. That being said, a withdrawal from your account would be much faster (3-6 business days) than a direct transfer which can take up to 4-6 weeks depending on the type of transfer.
Will my personal data still be shared with Betterment?
No, if you decide that you do not want your account(s) transferred to Betterment, our team will work with you to transfer them to an institution of your choice. Betterment will not receive any personal information related to your investment account with Wealthsimple.
I have decided to accept the transfer.
Is there anything I need to do to confirm that I accept this transfer?
No, you do not need to confirm if you accept the transfer, only if you wish to opt-out. Our team will be sending additional information about your transition to Betterment in the coming weeks, which will include the next steps needed to complete the transfer.
How will Wealthsimple safely move my personal data to Betterment?
Rest assured, Wealthsimple and Betterment will continue to comply with SEC Regulation S-P regarding the privacy of consumer financial information in connection with the transfer of accounts.
During this transition, will I have access to my funds the entire time?
Yes, you will have access to your Wealthsimple account where your funds will reside until the date of transfer on June 12th. Betterment will reach out to you to set up your account before we transfer the funds so that you’ll be able to access your new account and funds as soon as everything has moved over.
Do I need to create a new account and password?
Yes, you will need to create a new account and password to set up your Betterment account. Our team will be sending additional information about your transition to Betterment in the coming weeks, which will include an overview of their onboarding process. In the meantime, you can visit https://www.betterment.com/ to learn more about Betterment’s investment services.
Can I transfer my account over early to Betterment?
No, unfortunately, we are not able to transfer over any accounts to Betterment before the scheduled transfer date of June 12th.