Investing money, Mr. Frodo, is a dangerous business. You enter the market, and if you are not on your feet, you do not know where your money could be taken.
While Gandalf could have provided excellent advice for a life of adventure, investing was not the most advanced concept in Middle-earth. Luckily for you, we’ve compiled a list of the best investment apps on the go.
If you’re just starting out and want to get your feet wet without investing large sums of money in the volatile stock market, these apps are the best place to look.
1. Acorns ( Website
Acorns is a micro-investing app that works with your little change. Literally. When you make a purchase, Acorns rounds to the nearest dollar and invests the difference. When you grab a cup of coffee on your way to work in the morning for $ 2.15, Acorns rounds up the purchase to $ 3 and invests $ 0.85 in your portfolio.
You can then choose from five different portfolio profiles, from conservative to aggressive. A conservative profile means your money is likely to grow at a slower pace, but in more stable and reliable accounts. An aggressive profile means a greater risk of loss, but also a greater risk of growth. Choose the one that suits you best and see the results.
Acorn was developed as a mobile application, but the web portal is now available to anyone who wants to use the Internet via a mobile phone. While not free, Acorn is available for $ 1 a month for all accounts under $ 5,000, then 0.25% of the balance per year for accounts over $ 5,000.
2. Stash ( Website )
Stash has the same pricing structure as Acorns and doesn’t automatically invest for you. Stash provides users with educational content tailored to their investment preferences.
If you’re just starting out, all of the terminology and acronyms can seem overwhelming. While you won’t get a detailed analysis of every potential company to invest in, Stash can help you understand what all of these phrases mean.
You can choose between a value-driven portfolio or create your own custom portfolio. Once you’ve done that, you can tweak the Auto-Stash settings for recurring investments to create a kind of automated system based on your end goals.
It won’t take away the opportunity for you to get rid of the process, but Stash will provide you with the resources and information you need to get started in a world that can often be confusing. Stash is available on iOS and Android devices.
3. Robinhood ( the website )
One thing you should know about investing: it costs money to invest, but it also costs money to trade stocks. Often times, brokerage fees are associated with the movement of your stocks, which can eat up any potential gains you can make from rising stocks. Robinhood is a completely free app that lets you trade stocks for free.
Of course, you can only trade during certain hours, but you can extend that time by signing up for Robinhood Gold, a subscription service that gives you access to a wider range of features than the basic app.
It may sound too good to be true, but Robinhood as a company is designed with minimal overhead. This means that their costs are low and they can pass these savings onto their users without charging any brokerage fees. The app might not teach you how to invest, but if you know what you are doing, this is a great way to move stocks without the typical cost.
4. Ally Invest ( )
Ally Invest is the investment arm of Ally Bank, a low overhead online legal entity that caters to people looking to lower their costs. It’s a popular platform among day traders, but it’s also a great way to get started for newbies. The trade value is $ 4.95, but there is no minimum to worry about and a host of tools to help you along the way.
Ally also provides educational resources to help you learn how things work. This is a great option for the DIY investor. All ETFs are commission-free, but you will see a small commission on mutual fund trades.
You should also be aware that Ally Invest does not have auto investing or rebalancing options – everything is done manually, but it helps you learn more about your investments and your portfolio.
If you know absolutely nothing about investing, Ally Invest may not be the best option, but if you are willing to dig deep into yourself and understand what it all means, it can be a powerful tool for increasing your wealth over time.