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Wealthsimple says a key approval from the Bank of Canada gives it direct access to a much faster national payments system that’s in the works.

The fintech company says it’s the first nonbank, non-credit-union to be approved for a direct settlement account by the Bank of Canada, which paves the way for its access to the upcoming real-time-rail payment system.

Michael Katchen, Wealthsimple’s CEO, says it’s a huge milestone for the company and for the industry as it gives the company a seat in the regulatory space among the incumbents.

He says the company will use its new-found position to boost competition and innovation in the financial space.

Access to the real-time-rail system will mean Wealthsimple could roll out options like instant wage and bill payments and better payment options for merchants.

When those options might actually go live is, however, unclear, as Payments Canada, which is leading the shift to the real-time-rail system, announced on Oct. 11 it had indefinitely delayed the launch.

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