I recently heard TDW charges hidden double currency conversion fees to drip stocks traded in US dollars inside registered accounts so I took a look at my latest dividends.
(This was inside my RRSP but I assume it works the same way with a TFSA or RESP at TDW).
Here's my numbers;
325 US$ in dividends
219 US$ stated cost of dripped shares
106 US$ is what should have been left over and converted to CDN$ before double currency conversion fees are considered, right?
106 X 0.9645 (TDW's cost to convert to CAD)
= $102 CDN
Actual dollars left in my account after the drip was $96 CDN
So six bucks is what it cost me to let TDW drip my US holdings that day.
219 X 0.9645 would have been $211 CDN more in my account if I had not dripped.
$6 divided by $211 = 2.8%
So TDW is charging me 2.8% more to drip those shares than if I would just let them ding me just once and convert 100% of the dividends to Canadian dollars!
I didn't want TDW to do any currency conversion for me at what they charge, but until they get their trading software fixed my only other alternative would be to go elsewhere, and who's to say there won't be issues with the next discount brokerage I try.