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This 79 message thread spans 3 pages: < < 79 ( 1 2 [3]     
Canada AdSense Payment Currency Conversion Issues

 1:08 pm on Oct 29, 2008 (gmt 0)

I just received my PiP. The Canadian exchange rate that Adsense set was 1.185 which is quite low. The real Canadian exchange rate in the last few days (even now) is at around 1.25.

Big difference if you earn so much from Adsense ads. EX. if you earn $4000 in adsense, your conversion will be $4720 at 1.185 rate. But if you calculate with 1.25 rate, the conversion is $5000. So you lose almost $280. That's huge!

Im surprised, AS used to have a good competitive dollar conversion rate. Now their rate is even worse than the bank!



 7:09 pm on Nov 12, 2008 (gmt 0)

ASA: Could you advise on what exact date the most recent payments received by Canadians were "processed"? (i.e. for those receiving EFTs)

I received funds on October 29th, with PIP taking place the day before, October 28th. And from the Bank of Canada's website, the exchange rates for "up to 7 days before funds appear in your account" were:

Date Low Noon Close High
22/10/2008 1.2434 1.2499 1.2547 1.2600
23/10/2008 1.2543 1.2573 1.2557 1.2740
24/10/2008 1.2640 1.2732 1.2729 1.2796
27/10/2008 1.2777 1.2930 1.2889 1.2971
28/10/2008 1.2797 1.2943 1.2827 1.2995

Note, the rate from Google was 1.185, far below the low of any of those days. My background is finance, and I simply find it impossible to understand the 1.185 rate, given the above facts. I asked my bank how long an EFT takes in Canada (my funds were received from Bank of Nova Scotia) and they said it's usually 1 or 2 days.


 9:16 pm on Nov 12, 2008 (gmt 0)

Last month's payments were processed on October 21. According to oanda.com, the exchange rate on that date was 1.185 (http://www.oanda.com/convert/classic?date=10/21/08&value=1&expr=CAD&exch=USD).

If you would rather receive your payments in USD, you can update your form of payment to USD checks before the 15th of the month.



 10:05 pm on Nov 12, 2008 (gmt 0)


Going to the site you provided the link for - I get this (for that same date):

Tuesday, October 21, 2008
1 US Dollar = 1.43488 Australian Dollar

Now my AdSense payment record says:

Exchange Rate 1.487 : 1

This is the very same rate every Australian has already quoted here. The differential above works out at around $52.00 for every $USD 1,000.00

Extremely curious indeed. Also my bank statement consistently quotes the depositor as "ARVATO FINANCE S - GoogleAd".

The last time I checked, Arvato Finance was a merchant bank in Ireland. Where Oanda fits in I don't know.


 10:22 pm on Nov 12, 2008 (gmt 0)

Funds appeared in my account on October 29. 7 Calendar Days before that is October 22, not October 21st. Is Google using 7 business days as the standard, or calendar days? If processing occured on October 21st, why did PIP take place on October 28th?

Furthermore, *even* if we use October 21, 2008 (which is a big leap, given EFTs really only take 1 or 2 days), the data Oanda is reporting is wrong.

According to Reuters:


The Canadian dollar closed at C$1.2137 to the U.S. dollar, or 82.39 U.S. cents, down from C$1.1937 to the U.S. dollar, or 83.77 U.S. cents, at Monday's close.

This is consistent with the Bank of Canada's data for that date:


(set date to October 21, 2008, and check on US dollar noon, close, high and low)

Date Low Noon Close High
21/10/2008 1.2023 1.2202 1.2137 1.2210

Here's another source which is consistent with the Bank of Canada and Reuters, namely XE.com:


which reports mid-market noon rates of 1.2198069095 (nearly identical to the Bank of Canada).

According to the Bank of Canada, the absolute low on the day was 1.2023 (as I previously posted). 1.185 simply never happened according to the data.

And if you don't like Canadian data, here's what the Federal Reserve has to say for October 21, 2008:


21-Oct-08 1.2208

which is comparable to the Bank of Canada's number (1.2208 vs 1.2202) for the noon rate.

MarketWatch reported consistent data:


The Canadian dollar plunged to a three-year low of C$1.2205 against its U.S. counterpart, after the Bank of Canada cut interest rates by a quarter percentage point to 2.25%. The dollar last bought C$1.2124, up 1.8%.

i.e. 1.2124 close, vs. a close from the Bank of Canada of 1.2137

And what does Google Finance say for October 21?



Big difference from 1.185, even if we assume October 21st. 1.185 is what one might get if one converted $100 (i.e. super wide spreads at a bank branch), not the interbank rates that Google should be getting on multi-million dollar transactions.


 10:27 pm on Nov 12, 2008 (gmt 0)

IanCP: Glad to see someone doing the analysis for other countries. What I'd really love to see (but don't ever expect to see), is a time-stamped trade ticket between Google and its bank counterparty with the rate given for its Canadian publishers payments that month. Barring that, though, if they simply increased transparency in the future (i.e. use an Interbank rate that everyone could observe, i.e. from the Federal Reserve Bank link I provided in my prior message, or the Bank of Canada, PRE-SPECIFYING THE DATE THE TRANSACTION WOULD TAKE PLACE, e.g. 8 business days before the end of the month), at least then I could switch back to EFT from cheques). Such a transparent system would eliminate the possibility of backdating the FX rate. I wouldn't get back the money I lost due to the horrid exchange rate on the prior payment, but at least it would be clear that future conversions would be fair.


 10:46 pm on Nov 12, 2008 (gmt 0)

Here's another piece of data --- Oanda is *deeply* flawed. Right now, it is reporting the Canadian dollar at 1.19719:


Wednesday, November 12, 2008
1 US Dollar = 1.19719 Canadian Dollar
1 Canadian Dollar (CAD) = 0.83529 US Dollar (USD)
Median price = 1.19654 / 1.19719 (bid/ask)
Minimum price = 1.18877 / 1.18947
Maximum price = 1.20969 / 1.21014

This is *wayyyyyy* off the market. If you go to www.xe.com, we're at 1.23755, live.


 10:51 pm on Nov 12, 2008 (gmt 0)

The only possible way to reconcile this would be if we used October 21st in an entirely different time zone (e.g. say Japan!), which would get us back to October 20th in the Pacific (or Eastern) USA time zones. But, it wouldn't make sense for Google, in California, to be using a time zone in a different continent. They would have said "your payment was processed October 20th" above. Why a payment processed on October 20th in North American time would show up on October 29th, when EFTs really take 1 or 2 days, is beyond me.


 7:30 am on Nov 14, 2008 (gmt 0)


Any response to my concerns as well as GeorgeK and others with our rebuttal posts?

To me there is a serious credibility issue here which will not go away.


 3:18 pm on Nov 14, 2008 (gmt 0)

I understand your concerns and will pass them along. That's the best I can do.

I would like to remind you that every month, AdSense issues EFT payments in 16 local currencies and checks in even more. That is not an easy task. If you are unhappy with the exchange rate we use, you are always welcome to switch to USD checks.



 3:54 am on Nov 16, 2008 (gmt 0)

Hi there,

Long time reader here, first time poster.


One user stated that the EFT comes from ScotiaBank. Here's where it gets interesting. ScotiaBank's retail forex rates have started to stink lately, but in an odd way. Basically, their rates seem to favour buying your US$ far more than they favour selling you US$.

Current xe.net rates: 1.23585
OANDA Friday rate: 1.23535
Friday Scotia Rates: 1.251000 1.171000
Friday TD Rates: 1.2584 1.209
(admittedly, the bank rates are both from end of day Friday, and the xe.net rate is "current", but similar to the Friday OANDA rate)

Notice how the real rate is way closer to one of the Scotia rates than the other Scotia Rate?
Notice how the TD rates seem to be much better balanced around the real XE/OANDA rate?

If you brought US$100 to Scotia, you'd end up with ~$4 less than if you went to TD.
But if you wanted to buy US$100, they'd both want around CAD$125 from you.

Now, I know that the Google Adsense EFT is supposed to be commission free, but there's definitely something wrong at Scotia Bank and their exchange rates. The rates should be balanced around the real rate, not excessively favouring one over the other so much. It's like the rate they use to derive their retail rates is way off, and this may be what is affecting the users in this thread.

This doesn't explain what's going on in Aus/NZ, but I couldn't help but notice that there doesn't seem to be any complaints for other currencies.

[edited by: BitBurger at 4:06 am (utc) on Nov. 16, 2008]


 5:58 am on Nov 16, 2008 (gmt 0)

This doesn't explain what's going on in Aus/NZ, but I couldn't help but notice that there doesn't seem to be any complaints for other currencies.

There was another thread relating to UK rates. That may have mentioned other currencies as well.

So we now have Au, Ca, NZ and UK complaints that I know of AND this for the first time since EFT was introduced.

That is my particular concern, we've gone from "happy campers" to suspicious people. I very much doubt it's at AdSense's end but I'm not so sure about smart alec financial institutions they hire as agents.

Especially in the current climate.


 1:21 am on Nov 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

You can offer currency exchange rates to drive your point home to the powers that be at the plex account department... to no avail...

What strikes me about this whole accounting system is why oh why is the plex using off-shore banks to make payments to publishers... would it not make sense to use an Aussie bank for AUD payments and a Canadian Bank for Canadian CD payments etc, etc or am I missing something?


 1:55 am on Nov 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

I'd imagine it is for tax reasons. They "earn" the profits in a low-tax jurisdiction, and then repatriate them at a low-rate to the USA or just use the money "stuck" in some off-shore bank when they need to acquire a company. Oooor they do zero-interest loans between the divisions.

Using a foreign bank helps them abstract their earnings from their local operations, which only do things like marketing.

[edited by: BitBurger at 2:01 am (utc) on Nov. 17, 2008]


 2:07 am on Nov 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

My oh my... now I know why I visit here... there is always an answer pending to my questions...

However, lets hope the plex looks into the last recent exchange payments and at least questions the next rate payments... finger crossed...


 2:50 pm on Nov 21, 2008 (gmt 0)

I'm curious to see what would be the rate for this month, $CDN is dropping big time. Let's hope it won't be 1.18


 4:43 am on Nov 23, 2008 (gmt 0)

Anyone take note of the exchange rate on the 21st this month (in Canandian and Australian dollars) as that is the day ASA advised that payments are processed for international payments?

Will be interesting to note what happens this next payment due.


 5:10 am on Nov 23, 2008 (gmt 0)

Be smart and only accept payments in U.S dollars. I'm in Canada but have a U.S dollar account. I only exchange what I need when the Canadian dollar is high and leave the rest in U.S dollars. When the Canadian dollar is low like right now, I emptied out my USD$ account and coverted my entire balance to CAD$. Couple days ago when the dollar had fallen to 77 cents the Royal Bank gave be a conversion rate of 1.26. A whopping 26% on my balance.


 7:50 am on Nov 23, 2008 (gmt 0)

Accepting payment in US dollars by cheque in Australia is NOT an option... the bank fees are HUGE... about 15.00 Aussie dollars per cheque... and on top is a transfer fee which calculated for the amount... so I am at the mercy of adsense conversions.


 8:20 pm on Nov 23, 2008 (gmt 0)

Accepting payment in US dollars by cheque in Australia is NOT an option... the bank fees are HUGE... about 15.00 Aussie dollars per cheque... and on top is a transfer fee which calculated for the amount... so I am at the mercy of adsense conversions.

Further to that, excepting last month, the AdSense exchange rate was also "superior" by a significant amount to the exchange rate for negotiating cheques.

Not to mention having to travel to the bank and then hang around in a queue.

I'm hoping last month was simply a one off aberration caused by volatile markets. I'll be monitoring exchange rates on Wednesday our time and see what we eventually get. Was 61c on the weekend and now around 63c.

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