Royal Bank buys online savings bank Ally

Hello Canadian savers. It looks like Ally, the online bank offering Canadians the highest interest rate is no more. They’ve been bought out by one of the big 4 banks – Royal Bank of Canada. This is a disappointment for me and no doubt for many of you because all Ally High Interest Savings Accounts (HISA) will be closed on April 30, 2013.

I had an account with them so I guess now is the time to start researching another alternative. Once I find something suitable I will let you all know.

Happy investing.

Alan out.

Ripple – a decentralized exchange, a payment system, and a currency

Hello dear reader.

It has been quite a long time since I blogged about anything related to the e-currency industry, but I must share this article I ran across on the DGC (digital gold currency) Magazine website. The article talks about the revamped version of the Ripple payment system. As far as I understand the concept is that now Ripple has become more like Bitcoin, in the sense that it’s now a fully P2P digital currency. Click here to see the official explanation of how the Ripple system works. If you scroll down that page you’ll see mention of a “distributed ledger” and “P2P Network” as well as “Consensus.” Well that sounds exactly like the way Bitcoin functions. Lest you quickly jump to the conclusion that this is another Bitcoin fork/clone hold on a second and make sure read this further detail page.

I’m quite excited about the recent innovations occurring in the digital currency arena. Digital currencies that empower regular people (instead of governments, central banks, and institutions) are likely set to massively increase in popularity – especially considering that so many people these days are fed up with how poor the performance of traditional institutions (read central banks, governments, etc) has been and continues to be when it comes to properly managing a currency for the benefit of its users. So if you can’t trust the government with your money (you probably shouldn’t) then the question is can you trust the masses and the P2P systems empowering them? Well, I guess that question remains to be answered. These P2P currencies are a still young and definitely fragile. Time will definitely flush out the good from the bad and eventually one system will win the support of the majority.

I hope I have given you something interesting to look into. Please feel free to share your opinions and comments regarding Ripple or the whole P2P e-currency idea.

Alan out.

Questrade still offering 3 months of free stock trades

questrade logo

Greetings fellow Canadian investors. A while back I blogged about how my current stock broker – Questrade – is offering 3 months of free trades. Well, I just wanted to remind that this promotion is still active, so if you’re thinking about switching brokers or thinking about getting into either trading stocks as a daytrader or simply want to build your own custom stock portfolio now would be the time to make a move. One reason to switch to this broker is that they offer the lowest commission rates in Canada.

So anyways, what you need to do to qualify for 3 free months of trading is visit this link and then use this offer code: RSP2013

Good luck and happy trading!

Btw, if you wish to discuss stocks – especially Canadian stocks – join me at the Stocks Nirvana forum.

Alan out.

Canadian stock traders – Get 3 months of free stock trades

questrade logo

Greetings fellow Canadian investors and traders. I have a pretty cool promotion passed on to me by Questrade – my current stock broker. They’re having a special promotion where you can get free unlimited trades for a period of 3 months. Use offer code RSP2013 before March 1, 2013 to get unlimited free trades. It’s really all that simple. Is there a catch? Nope, but there is fine print that you should read, and speaking of which here it is:

Terms and conditions

How to qualify

Open a new registered, margin or TFSA* account by 11:59 p.m. ET, March 1st, 2013 and, depending on your funding level, get up to 3 months of unlimited free stock trades. The free trades are in the form of commission rebates.

Get started here

  • Enter the promotional code RSP2013 online when completing the application for a new account.
  • The offer is open to new and existing equity clients.
  • The free trades apply to equity trades only (sorry, no option orders, gold trading, mutual fund trading, or foreign currency trading).
  • Foreign exchange (forex) accounts are not eligible.
  • If you are funding your account by transferring from another broker, the transfer must be initiated by 11:59 p.m. ET, March 1st, 2013 and must be completed within 60 days of initiation to qualify for the offer.
  • New accounts by existing Questrade clients cannot be funded by transferring funds from another Questrade account.

Depending on your funding levels, get 1, 2, or 3 months of free trades: details

  • The minimum required funding to get 3 months of unlimited free stock trades is CAD $50,000. All equity trades completed within 90 days of account activation are free.
  • The minimum required funding to get 2 months of unlimited free stock trades is CAD $25,000. All equity trades completed within 62 days of account activation are free.
  • The minimum required funding to get 1 month of unlimited free stock trades is CAD $1,000. All equity trades completed within 31 days of account activation are free.

And to make it easier to get started…

  • You have an additional 30 days from the date the account is activated to reach the minimum funding requirement for additional month(s) of unlimited free stock trades. That sounds complicated, but really it’s quite simple. Here’s an example: fund it with $1,000 immediately so you get started trading. Then before the month is up, add another $49,000, and your free trades continue for the full three months. Nice, huh?

Some terms and conditions

  • Your account will be charged for the trading commission during the qualifying period and the commission will then be rebated to your account within three business days of the trade execution up to a maximum of $9.95 per trade.
  • Account holders must maintain the following minimum account balance for at least 6 months of account funding in order to be eligible for the corresponding offer:
    • $50,000 for 3 months of unlimited free stock trades
    • $25,000 for 2 months of unlimited free stock trades
  • If the account balance falls below the minimum required amount before the end of the 6 month period due to withdrawals on your account, you will no longer qualify for the offer and Questrade will apply a charge to your account based on the credited amount. If the account balance falls below the minimum required asset amount due to market fluctuations, you are still eligible for the offer and no charges will be applied.

A few more terms and conditions

  • Other trade fees including exchange and ECN fees may apply.
  • This is free trades only. You will not receive cash compensation for any unused free trade commissions.
  • Amounts quoted are in CAD.
  • You are solely responsible for any tax consequences or other amounts which may be associated with the Offer.
  • This offer is not available to Questrade employees or members of their household.
  • This offer is subject to change without notice.
  • This is a one-time offer per client. This means pick your account wisely: put the free trades in the account you want to trade in!
  • This offer cannot be combined with any other Questrade offer except free to transfer (see below).


Questrade will pay your transfer-out fees up to CAD $150 when you move a minimum of CAD $25,000 to Questrade from another brokerage. Payment of the transfer-out fee is capped at CAD $150 and is limited to one account per client.

To take advantage of this limited time promo simply open an account by visiting the Questrade homepage.

Enjoy your free trades!


I’m switching mailing list providers

Hi everyone. I just wanted to let those of you that are subscribed to this blog’s mailing list know that I’ll soon (like n the next few days) be switching mailing list providers. So from that point onwards all my mailing list broadcasts will become from Ymlp (Your MailingList Provider) instead of Aweber.

Why switch? Well, the only reason is cost. I like Aweber, but finance are a bit tight for me recently, so I have to cut costs where I can and Ymlp offers the same service at a much more economical rate. Also I rarely send out e-mails so I can’t justify paying $29 for a service that I infrequently use. However, aweber is great if you’re one of those big shot online marketers who sends e-mail on a very regular basis and you need advanced analytics and other such fancy pants features.

So yeah just a heads up that my next broadcast will be coming from Ymlp so don’t panic, unsubscribe, or flag the e-mail as spam. It will still show in the “From” field as “Alan’s Money Blog” so you know it will be from me.

Thanks for your attention and I wish you all the best.