Setting up a brokerage account has never been as easy. The days of mailing your personal information to a brokerage or ringing in your orders seem like a foreign concept to most.
The question we must now ask ourselves: what broker *suits me?*
There are dozens of brokerages that offer their own unique value. Perhaps this comes with zero-commissions, custodial account options or the ability to trade options or futures. In this article, we are going to compare four investment apps in hopes you can better understand what it is about an investment platform that you value most.
First up, Stash.
Stash is an investment app that makes it easy for beginners to start investing. They support a wide range of accounts making it easier for you to save for a specific goal. In their application, they ask a series of questions in an effort to better understand what investment style suits you best.
With fractional shares and hundreds of stocks and ETF’s to invest in, Stash offers a wide range of investment options and is unique in that they allow you to invest in themes as well as individual stocks, much like we do here at Loved. Stash charges subscription fees of $1, $3 or $9 a month depending on the level of service the user wants.
Similar to Stash, Acorns makes it easy to invest with little money and gauges an investors risk tolerance and goals through a series of questions during the application setup. Like the name suggests, Acorns invests your ‘spare change’ on a regular basis into a variety of different stocks and ETFs and rebalances regularly with the hopes of achieving your desired investment goals.
How it works?
You link your debit or credit card that you use on a regular basis to your Acorns account. Acorns then rounds up any purchases made from your linked account and invests accordingly. They also offer the option to invest on a recurring basis, starting with as little as $5 per day. Depending on the level of service you desire, the Acorns fees are $1, $3 or $5 per month.
Similar to Acorns and Stash, Betterment is a low-cost investment platform that asks users for personal information regarding their investing goals and experience and makes recommendations on where to invest. You can deposit however you like, with no account-minimums, and can chose from thousands of low-cost ETF’s that have been researched and approved by the company’s team of investment analysts.
Unlike the previous two options, Betterment is more accustomed to larger account sizes. If you’re account is below $100,000, you pay a 0.25% fee each year and if your balance is above $100,000 you pay a 0.40% fee but have access to features not included with the basic account option.
Last up, Robinhood
Robinhood pioneered the push to make investing more affordable and accessible to people. Their platform, offered on both web and mobile, allows a user to invest and trade stocks, options, futures, and cryptocurrencies with zero-commissions.
Its popularity has grown in recent times as it offers a wide range of investment options but as a result, they offer little to no investment guidance unlike the previous three options. Robinhood is therefore a great option for those with more experience with trading and investing and have a higher risk tolerance. For $5 a month, you can get Robinhood Gold that offers premium information as well as the ability to request margin to trade with.
Each of the above options are each unique in their own way. Stash, Acorns and Betterment are more focused on helping you for the long term and offer cool services and features to help you do that. Robinhood, on the other hand, gives you access to more investing tools and might better suit a shorter term trader.
At Loved, we like to think we do it all by providing you with the educational content so that you can you both learn and invest on your own, simultaneously growing your generational wealth and knowledge as you do so. With our fee-free investing and banking, you can open an account in just a few minutes and begin building your future with as little as $5!