IM's blog

Best Canadian Dollar to US Dollar Exchange Rates

Looking to make a trip to the USA?

Travel (cheaper) internationally from the US? Flights there are usually a lot cheaper than in Canada. 

Buy a car in the US?

Going to University/College in the USA? Or need UK Pounds to g o to school in England?

Buy a vacation home in Florida? US Stocks?

For all of these things, you'll need US Dollars/American dollars to make the purchases.

Sell Silver & Gold Scrap and Coins: Where to Sell Gold (as a consumer)

Selling Gold Scrap and Silver Coins

Canadians need to be a bit careful as to where they sell off their scrap gold and silver, or gold/silver coins.

Lowest Cost Mutual Funds MER Fees in Canada

TD E-series Low-MER (Management Expense Ratio) Mutual Fund Fees

Are you unhapy with mutual funds that are charging Management Expense Ratios (MERs) of 1% or more, sometimes upwards of 2.5%?

There's no good evidence to prove that higher MERs result in greater returns.

TD has a relatively unadvertised line of mutual funds with exceptionally low MERs. Perhaps the lowest in Canada. 

US Dollar - Canadian Dollar Exchange Rates - September 2009 - Day-by-Day + Monthly Average

Hi Again,

Here are the September 2009 exchange rates between the US Dollar and the Canadian Dollar as per the Bank of Canada. The Bank of Canada is Canada's Central Bank, like the US' Federal Reserve Bank. 

Exchange rates are only published on weekday business days. Generally, exchange rates don't fluctuate much on weekends, but you are free to take an average of the before and after trading day to get a rough estimate of what it would be.

Cogeco Overage Fees/Charges - Bandwidth - Call, Complain + Cancel!

It looks like Cogeco, the worst cable provider in Canada (I like to call them "Cage-co") is now actually charging overage fees on their internet service.

Apparently their internet service infrastructure is so bad that they had to resort to absurd usage caps. In reality, they're just doing it to steal more of your money, there's no real shortage of bandwidth!

BMO Mosaik Mastercard: $25 Annual Fee on New and Soon Old Accounts

BMO American Dollar Credit Card Fees

I've been quite a fan of BMO Mosaik's No-Fee US$ Mastercard.

Bank of Montreal had the only fee-free US$ credit card in Canada without making you jump through any hoops.  TD Bank has a "free" one if you subscribe to their most expensive banking plan (or free with a minimum $5000 deposit, ya right!). 

Banking & Currency Advice for a Canadian moving to the USA

I received an email from a reader (and got permission to repost it anonymously). I'm sure it is a situation familiar to many that end up on this website:

Blue is my writing, green is the reader's.

Guide to Opening Canadian Bank Accounts for Americans (and other foreigners).

Canadian Banking Industry Information for Foreigners/Americans

First, I'll give a brief introduction to banking in Canada before providing the information on how to open a Canadian bank account as a foreigner. 

HorizonPlus Prepaid Credit Card

It looks like the Horizon Plus Prepaid Credit Mastercard Lives On.

HorizonPlus Prepaid Credit Card

Looks like this is still available, despite the lack of usability of Peoples Trust's Website. That's right, they don't put a possessive apostrophe on the Peoples. Grammar Fail. 

How to Send Money to a TD Bank Account / Canada Trust Bank Account

If you need to send money to a friend/relative via TD Canada Trust, there are two good ways of doing so:

ZoomPass Payment/Money Transfer System: Anyone use it?

Zoompass: Canadian Mobile Payment System

Now I'm seeing a bit of web advertising for it. Looks like a soft-launch to me.

I think it's just a stored-value system (like a prepaid credit card) integrated with Paypass. The difference with Zoompass and a prepaid reloadable Mastercard is that Zoompass:

People's Trust Secured Mastercard (formerly the Horizon Plus Credit Card Products, like their Prepaid Cards)

People's Trust Secured Mastercard Credit Card

It looks like People's Trust/Horizon Plus is no longer in the prepaid credit card market. (This is incorrect, please see comments below for why this confusion occurred).  Now they only offer the HorizonPlus Mastercard directly through Peoples Trust, whereas previously they were through the HorizonPlus subsidiary (or so I think). If you're looking for a prepaid gift card, it would still be a good idea to take a look at my Canadian Prepaid Visa/Mastercard Gift Cards Review here.

July 2009 Canadian Dollar to US Dollar Currency Exchange Rates

These are the Canadian Dollar to US Dollar Exchange rates (noon time), day by day for July 2009.

The source of this data is the Bank of Canada (equivalent to the US Federal Reserve Bank).

The average rate, highest rate and lowest rate for the month of July 2009 are at the bottom of the page. 

You can use these rates to compare to the rate your credit card offers or other foreign currency transactions.

Prepaid Visa/MasterCards and Booking Hotels/Motels/Vacations

Generally speaking, a prepaid card should be accepted anywhere a Visa or Mastercard credit card is accepted.

How To Tell Which Provider A Cell Phone Belongs To

Wondering which company a cell phone number belongs to?

Wondering whether a phone number is a cell phone number, or a landline?

Wondering if a phone number would be long distance or not from where you live?

Check out TelcoData.US

Citi Enrich Mastercard Cashback Rebate

Well, it's January 27th, and I just received my CitiMastercard Enrich Rebate cheque. Their credit card is pretty much the only one in Canada that gives you 1% cash back from the first dollar with no annual fees and no minimums (though there is a max rebate of $250/year I think).

The cheques are mailed out of Toronto/Mississauga, so it's likely an overnight thing for me, but those out East or West might need to wait a few days before getting them.

Prepaid Visa and Mastercard Credit Cards: Where to Buy them

As stated in my review of the prepaid cards available on the Canadian market, there are those that are non-reloadable and anonymous, and those that are reloadable and engraved with your name and everything.

Seriously, I'd highly recommend reading through my Canadian Prepaid Visa & Mastercard review. Seriously. 

Avoid the MuchMusic Prepaid Card, you pay too much for what you get. 

TD Canada Trust US$ ATMs: Bank Machines in Canada that Dispense American Money

TD does have 4 ATMs in Southern Ontario that do dispense US$ cash. These can be convenient after-hours if you need cash late at night or during a holiday, or want to avoid bank lineups. I assume you can withdraw from your Canadian dollar TD account with their usual commissions. I would also think that non-TD customers could use them, at TD's regular commissions and ATM fees.

TD ATMs that give out US$ Cash:

Click the link to open up a map in a new window

Canadian Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) Management Fee (MER) Comparisons

Canadian ETFs and their Management Fees: A Comparison Chart

As far as I know, there are no restrictions on Canadians buying US ETFs (just watch out for those currency exchanges, and differences in tax-treatment). And the US has been exploding in ETF Offerings, with over 100 launched just this year. Heck, you can even buy “Russian Ruble ETFs”.

Is Deal Extreme Down? Yep, Sure is.

The Deal Extreme Website is down as of January 22, 2009. A bunch of people are ending up at my Deal Extreme review page here anyway, because they were searching for sites about deal extreme being down. 

I will post updates on any updates I get on when they'll be back or if they're down for good.