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coleconut

Currencies on Ebay - whats your thoughts?

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I have been a buyer and seller on Ebay Canada ( EBAY.CA) for 14 years and I typically buy and sell in $USD. Ebay Canada just notified me and I assume everyone else on Ebay.ca that we will no longer be able to list in any other currency than the Canadian Dollar. As a Canadian, I am used to dealing in USD, its not uncommon to get US coins in change when I purchase items in a store in Canada, most stores will take USD in Canada even though the exchange rate in a retail establishment might be less than optimum. I can readily buy USD in any Canadian bank with no muss or fuss - a common transaction.

I note however the opposite is not true in my travels to the US. I rarely see anyone - except perhaps Duty Free stores at the border crossings - ANYONE in the States want or accept Canadian currencies. On my first trip to Florida I expected to be able to go to a bank and exchange my Canadian money for US dollars. Most banks wouldnt touch it, and the one that would wanted to charge some extortion rate.

On the extreme side of this I recall that rather than change a $20 bill, I gave a restaurant in Michigan a Canadian dime and the Manager literally ran out to the parking lot to bring me back in to change the $20 instead of accepting the friggin canuck dime. Wow

 

For Ebay under the new policy I can make all my listings on Ebay.com in USD thats not the problem (well shipping options presented to me are a bit whack on ebay.com) but...

 

And maybe none of the above has to do with my question but I will ask it anyway. So my question to my American brothers and sisters is would you have any concern or issue with having to pay for an Ebay purchase in a currency other than US Dollars? Note that paypal takes about 3% off the top for currency exchanges.

Example an item sells for $100 Canadian. This translates approx to $70 US. To pay the Canadian seller, paypal will charge you $72.10 US

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And maybe none of the above has to do with my question but I will ask it anyway. So my question to my American brothers and sisters is would you have any concern or issue with having to pay for an Ebay purchase in a currency other than US Dollars?

 

 

For those who are already willing to purchase items from outside the United States, I think this is a non-issue. Is there any other downside to listing on eBay.com rather than eBay.ca (to list in USD) for you as a seller other than the 'whack' shipping options?

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As far as your ebay thing goes I pay whatever the exchange rate is. I don't actually pay Canadian or whatever. If I buy an item that is $20 Canadian I only pay $15.16 US. I do not care what paypal does. They take $15.16 from me and send $20 to you, that matters none to me. I still pay the US price it states in the auction.

 

However I know for a fact paypal takes 3.9 % instead of 2.9% when doing international sales. Maybe that is set-up based on the currency. I always get hit with 2.9% from US buyers and $3.9% from everyone else. maybe if my currency was set-up to Canadian I would only get hit 2.9% from Canadian but jammed with 3.9% US.

 

I would guess paypal is losing money this way as some sellers may sell majority to out of country and they are losing 1% of fees, if it works that way. I can understand you rather have a listing say $15.16 US instead of $20 Can but we see the US price anyhow.

 

Now as far as you being able to use US currency in Canada and banks taking it freely that is obviously because a $20 US bill is worth more than $20 Canadian, of course they would take it. Thats free money taken to the currency exchange. That would be dumb for someone in the US to take Canadian currency at US value. I live in NY so I see a lot more Canadian coins than most people and they are more commonly accepted in my area but I still get stores that check and hand them back to me if I use one.

 

I would not accept Canadian currency in person. I live nowhere near a currency exchange and I'm not going to figure out how much more you would have to pay me in Canadian. Of course our banks will not take it, it is worth less. There is no way they will go out of their way to exchange it for US currency, unlike Canada who will profit from doing that.

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PayPal charges the seller the exchange fee. It has been this way for years.

If I am a Canadian seller selling items in Canadian dollars there is nothing to exchange for me. My point was if you as a US buyer for my item in Canadian dollars, you the buyer pay the exchange fee to change your US dollars to Canadian dollars to pay me. I only pay the normal paypal fee to receive the payment, again I dont pay any currency exchange fees.

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For those who are already willing to purchase items from outside the United States, I think this is a non-issue. Is there any other downside to listing on eBay.com rather than eBay.ca (to list in USD) for you as a seller other than the 'whack' shipping options?

I "think" in Canadian dollars so I convert currencies in my head when I am on ebay.com. When I am on Ebay.ca, then ebay does the conversion for me. For example if I see a listing for an item for $100 USD on Ebay.com, if I look at it on Ebay.ca, the same item, it shows the item in both currencies. As far as whack shipping options, obviously the shipping choices are USPS-centric which of course then doesnt allow me to select "real" choices offered by Canada Post, I resort to "standard shipping" and "shipping from an international location"

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Now as far as you being able to use US currency in Canada and banks taking it freely that is obviously because a $20 US bill is worth more than $20 Canadian, of course they would take it. Thats free money taken to the currency exchange. That would be dumb for someone in the US to take Canadian currency at US value.

 

Not really obvious for the reason you suggest, the exact same behaviour I speak of happens no matter what the exchange rate is. In the not too distant past the Canadian dollar has been worth more or it sat at par for quite a while. Its not like some feeding frenzy starts when the gap widens. No matter what the rate is the bank tacks on their ~3% fee and profits no matter what the exchange rate happens to be at the time.

Come to think of it my "dime incident" happened when the Canadian dollar was worth more. I was giving her 11 cents...

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Not really obvious for the reason you suggest, the exact same behaviour I speak of happens no matter what the exchange rate is. In the not too distant past the Canadian dollar has been worth more or it sat at par for quite a while. Its not like some feeding frenzy starts when the gap widens. No matter what the rate is the bank tacks on their ~3% fee and profits no matter what the exchange rate happens to be at the time.

Come to think of it my "dime incident" happened when the Canadian dollar was worth more. I was giving her 11 cents...

 

 

The exchange rate has always been this way, sure there may have been a VERY brief interval where the exchange rate was close but when Canadian banks are already set up to accept and exchange USD because it has been profitable for the past 20+ years they are going to accept it and continue as they do.

 

It has NEVER been profitable for a US bank to take Canadian currency and exchange it.

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The exchange rate has always been this way, sure there may have been a VERY brief interval where the exchange rate was close but when Canadian banks are already set up to accept and exchange USD because it has been profitable for the past 20+ years they are going to accept it and continue as they do.

 

It has NEVER been profitable for a US bank to take Canadian currency and exchange it.

Currency exchange is always profitable for all financial institutions with all currencies as long as they charge their normal 2-3% over the going buy and sell rates. It sounds like you're suggesting that banks on both sides of the border were accepting the opposite currency at par which is not what they do. (Coleconut's situation with the dime at par is not the same as how the banks work)

 

The Canadian dollar was at or above par with the US numerous times in the last few decades including most of the 1970's, and more recently from 2007 to 2014.

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Currency exchange is always profitable for all financial institutions with all currencies as long as they charge their normal 2-3% over the going buy and sell rates.

 

 

What I am saying is if I take a $20 bill to Canada it is worth more than $20 therefore Canada banks will happily take that money as will any Canadian business owner as they can exchange it for more than $20 Canadian. Canadian banks may charge the business owners a fee but I'm sure the fee is less than the exchange rate.

 

I have drove to Canada a few times back awhile ago and my US money was always happily accepted and was preferred because it was worth more. That is NOT the same in the US.

 

I am talking cash in hand transactions. Please do not confuse the TWO different discussions the OP was talking about.

 

It is not profitable for a US person to take Canadian currency and trade it in for US currency.

 

Please note that I am specifically saying I pay $20 US for $20 Can I am essentially paying more but I am not wasting my time going to a currency exchange. This is why Canada accepts US money and not vice versa.

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What I am saying is if I take a $20 bill to Canada it is worth more than $20 therefore Canada banks will happily take that money as will any Canadian business owner as they can exchange it for more than $20 Canadian. Canadian banks may charge the business owners a fee but I'm sure the fee is less than the exchange rate.

 

I have drove to Canada a few times back awhile ago and my US money was always happily accepted and was preferred because it was worth more. That is NOT the same in the US.

 

I am talking cash in hand transactions. Please do not confuse the TWO different discussions the OP was talking about.

 

It is not profitable for a US person to take Canadian currency and trade it in for US currency.

 

Please note that I am specifically saying I pay $20 US for $20 Can I am essentially paying more but I am not wasting my time going to a currency exchange. This is why Canada accepts US money and not vice versa.

I'm not confused at all about the two different types of transactions. I'm suggesting possibly you were. You mentioned in a previous post that of course Canadian banks would take US money because it's "free money at the currency exchange". Not true, they are the currency exchange. They make profit on the spread between the buy rate and sell rate. The same would hold true of US banks taking any foreign currency. If you take your $20 US bill to a Canadian bank they will give you somewhere in the neighbourhood of $27CDN. If I take my $20 CDN bill to a US bank they will give me somewhere in the neighbourhood of $15 US. That's the going exchange rate between the two currencies that all financial institutions deal in.

 

As for a cash in hand transactions where I crossed the border and offered $20 CDN for a $20 US item to a street vendor then that would not be a wise decision, just as someone from the US buying a $20 CDN item with a $20 US bill wouldn't be a smart purchase as well. The reverse would hold true when the Canadian dollar trades above par with the US.

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I'm not confused at all about the two different types of transactions. I'm suggesting possibly you were. You mentioned in a previous post that of course Canadian banks would take US money because it's "free money at the currency exchange". Not true, they are the currency exchange.

 

The freely part was more so business's who will take US cash in person. Whether the banks charge a rate to their customers to convert us to can I do not know. However since their customers aka the business people who take US cash need to exchange it somehow the banks probably offer that service to their customers as a selling point to bank with them.

 

I disagree banks are not the same as a currency exchange. I highly doubt the currency exchange on the border does anything else but exchange currency, they may be considered a bank as they deal in money but they are not a bank you have your weekly checks deposited in and take a loan from.

 

As far as cash in hand not being a wise decision, that depends on how you look at it. It is VERY stressful figuring out where to park at one of those damn things and then you have to wait in line. Figure on doing that twice, once to convert to CAN and then again to go back to US it is easier to suck up the currency losses if you are not planning on spending much out of pocket.

 

Times have changed in the past 15 years and debit cards are more widely used now but what I was getting at is 20 years ago people used cash and if I was in Canada and didn't know where the exchange was or didn't feel like dealing with it to save $5 I would spend my US currency and it was gladly accepted, therefore Canada adapted to both currencies. Where as if you tried to pay Canadian currency in the US nobody would accept that as the exchange was less in US, so there was no reason anyone in the US went out of there way to accept it.

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For online purchases- I don't care at all about the 3% exchange fee. If I can get what I want, at a price I'm happy with, I'm not really concerned about what money goes to paypal/shipping/etc. However- it is important that I can figure that out. Once in awhile, I've found international sellers (usually Japanese, I deal with them more) who only list a yen price & only accept a yen payment. This means I don't know what my final total is until it comes out of my bank account. I can always try checking an exchange site to get an estimate, but the number varies from site to site. Plus, if it takes a week to get billed, the rate's likely changed. That's usually not a problem with Ebay transactions, though.

 

As far as in-person transactions... considering how many cashiers have trouble with just handling US currency, I understand why they wouldn't want to bother with Canadian (except the dime thing... it's just a dime! Dump it on someone else in their change already!) I am a bit surprised to learn about the trouble with bank exchanges, though- you'd think they'd be set up to handle it properly. At least along the border/in tourist hotspots. Maybe we've just stumbled into a business venture...

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. Where as if you tried to pay Canadian currency in the US nobody would accept that as the exchange was less in US, so there was no reason anyone in the US went out of there way to accept it.

Hmmmm. Well I guess with this line of reasoning it wouldn't make sense for anyone in Europe to accept US dollars because the Euro is worth more than the US dollar?

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Hmmmm. Well I guess with this line of reasoning it wouldn't make sense for anyone in Europe to accept US dollars because the Euro is worth more than the US dollar?

 

 

At least we are on the same page now :)

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