With the rise of mobile applications, the investment process has been made much easier than it once was. Now, investors like you or I can simply create an account with little to no effort, log in without a minimum payment, and get to the process.
Back in the day, one had to call up a stock broker, speak about the trade, and pay a large fee. Now, most of the process is instantaneous. It doesn’t require any third-party communication, and fees are much smaller or even nonexistent.
Of course, even with the ease of stock trading applications, there are still some that are much better than others. Some focus on real estate, others micro-investing, and others more just on stocks. With so many options out there, we took it upon ourselves to try and find the best ones for your needs.
So, without further ado, we present to you this guide of the best investment apps for 2019 and beyond.
Top Investment Apps of 2019
What is an investment app?
An investment application is a replacement for old-time stock trading. In the earlier days of the stock market, an investor would have to call a stockbroker, ask for a trade to be made under their name, and have to pay a hefty fee. We’ve since evolved past that thanks to investment apps.
These applications allow you to buy into investments almost instantly. No longer does one have to call up a company and deal with waiting and extra fees. Additionally, investment apps tend to be great resources for information on different stocks, as well as a space for you to manage your portfolio and make the best of your investments.
How do investment applications make money?
Stock trading applications charge commission fees so they can make a profit. This means that every single time you make a trade, you’re charged extra for it. Of course, this is only one way these applications profit.
Another is with managed accounts. Here, the app offers an account that is managed by a stockbroker for a fee. That way, you don’t have to pay attention to your stocks, and you can still make money from them. That is, if you can afford to do this.
These firms also charge for extra services like live trading over the phone, or Options and futures contracts. Moreover, some applications charge account fees which come to if you decide to switch accounts from one space to another, or inactivity fees if you don’t use your account for a while. All of these things add up to a large cost for you, and a lot of money for the application.
Tips for choosing an investment trading app
In order to assist you in your search for an investment application that best suits your individual needs, check out the following tips.
There are all sorts of different investment types for the average trader. These include but are not limited to traditional stocks, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), cryptocurrencies, and Options. Depending on what you’re looking for you may want an app that provides one or all of these. It’s also not a bad idea to start with one and move onto a more advanced application later on.
➡️Ease of Use
Of course, while a trading application makes the actual investment process easier, this doesn’t help you if the user interface barely works. When looking at the different applications, examine how you flow through the process. Pay attention to what works and what doesn’t and make sure you’re not wasting time trying to figure out the menu process.
As with any application you’re putting money into, pay attention to its background. Is the userbase generally happy with the provided services? Was the group ever involved in shady business practices or legality issues? See what the world has to say on a service before investing your time and money into it.
Does the investment application provide in-app research for investors? What sort of information does it give that can help users make a quality trade? Robinhood, for example, includes expert analysis on if the stock is worth buying, selling, or holding. That and users can view stock-related news without having to leave the application.
If you’re just getting into stock trading, an automated process might be your best bet. Applications like Acorns put money in investments without you thinking about it. That’s’ right, just by buying things during your everyday activities, Acorns puts your spare change from each one into different stocks. If you struggle with giving away your hard-earned cash, this investment app would be a good one to get started with.
While some applications don’t require a deposit minimum to get started, those that do could charge a lot of money. This upfront fee is usually worth the investment, but only if you can afford it in the first place. That and if the application is even worth an upfront fee in the first place.
How much money do investment apps cost?
As always, it depends entirely on what you’re trying to get out of investing. Some applications require a minimum to get involved while others don’t. On top of this, there are applications that charge high fees, like TD Ameritrade’s $6.25 fee for every single trade. If you can find an investment app with no minimum and cheap trade fees, then you’ll be set for a while.
Are there any other costs in trading?
Yes, there actually are other costs in trading. That said, commissions are the most common ones. But it’s good to know the other types.
For example, there’s a such thing as “margin interest”. This is when an app charges an investor who trades with borrowed money, otherwise known as “on margin”. Depending on the application, you’ll have to pay a variety of different annual percentage rates based on how much you borrow.
Then there are taxes. Don’t forget that you must pay taxes on all of your different investments, and short term investments are taxed higher than other capital gains. Moreover, some of these applications charge “fund expenses,” which is taken from your profits automatically.
Also, some of these applications charge inactivity fees, transfer fees, brokerage fees, and more. These can add up over time, so it’s important to know which applications charge which fees for your financial well-being.
If you’ve read our guide from start to finish, you now have a solid understanding of what works in an investment app. Each of these applications provides a different experience a little unlike the rest of them on the list.
Take a chance and try out each one to see what you prefer. Hopefully, our guide helped you in your decision-making process, and you’ll find one that gets you started and staying in the world of investments. Happy profiting!
Which investment app is best for buying stocks?
The best investment app for your buying needs is based entirely on your preference. Read through this list and pick the one that caters best to you.
What do investment apps charge?
This is interesting because each app is different. Some applications, like Robinhood, are entirely free to both use and trade on. Others, like TD Ameritrade, don't require a minimum but charge high rates on each trade. Each has its own way of working, so make sure you're aware of it ahead of time.
What assets can investment apps be used to purchase?
Stock trading applications provide all sorts of different assets to buy. Some offer just traditional stocks while others, like Robinhood, provide access to cryptocurrencies as well. Others support ETF's, Options, and more.
Do investment apps help me diversify??
Very much so! And some more than others. For example, TD Ameritrade has a portfolio helper that puts helps diversify your investments between the different options. Some might have you jump into cryptocurrencies, while others will help you pick and choose between traditional stocks. As long as you have the money, you can diversify between as many different investments as you'd like.
Are there any hidden fees in investment apps?
While not exactly hidden, there are extra fees inside your investment apps, some of which will come later than others. For example, taxes. All of your trades and investments are taxed, and this is something you must cater for ahead of time. Also, there are brokerage fees, transfer fees, and some applications even have inactivity fees. As always, it all depends on the application. Well, aside from taxes. Taxes always hit.
Are there any disadvantages to using investment apps?
In some ways, yes. For example, a lot of these applications are fairly basic and only provide an elementary look at stock trading. That said, they're also a great way to start stock trading, as they save you money and only focus on the essentials. However, if you're looking to become an advanced trader later on, you'll want to move over to more traditional applications once you get the hang of things. Just make sure to find one with low commission fees!Also, few of these applications have any sort of reliable risk tolerance. Essentially, an app will decide on what you can risk based on only a little bit of information. This could lead to inaccurate data and, as a result, poor investments.