The stock market is no longer just for heavily caffeinated traders in suits and ties, shouting at each other on the floor of the stock exchange. Financial apps have made investing more accessible and easy to understand for the average consumer. Stuffing money in the mattress doesn’t yield high returns and that occasional penny in your savings won’t finance that new boat any faster. Whether you’re thinking about investing but don’t know where to start, or you’ve done some trading before and are looking to expand, there is an app for you. Today, we’ll look at the best micro investing apps on the market.

Stash

  • Price: $1 per month for balances under $5k, $2 per month over $5k
  • Minimum: $0
  • Who’s It For: Beginners – Limited Trading Experience
  • Hands On/Off: Hands on

Stash app is for anyone looking for guidance as they begin to invest money. The app makes recommendations as to what options will best fit your portfolio. Stash lets you trade in specific industries and individual stocks, giving you control that other apps don’t offer. What separates this app is that it teaches the user smart investment strategies as you save money. The low minimums help you create a diverse portfolio with minimal funds. Just be mindful that the freedom to do your own trading comes with responsibility. Stash provides less oversight than other robo-advisors. If you’re not sure whether this is the micro investing app for your, you can try it for a month for free!

Acorns

  • Price: $1 per month for basic (core) account, $2 per month for core account + IRA
  • Minimum: $0
  • Who’s It For: Savers rather than serious investors, college students
  • Hands On/Off: Hands off

Acorns is an app for people who like the set-and-forget approach of automatic savings. Acorns primary feature is the roundup charges. Say you buy a drink for $1.75. Acorns will automatically round up the charge to $2 and the additional $.25 is added to your account and invested. You can also earn cash by buying products and services through the app. Acorns makes saving money convenient, easy, and a little bit fun. You can set recurring charges on top of your roundups to grow your money faster. Choose one of five pre-existing, risk-based portfolio types.

If you don’t want to be too hands on when investing and are looking for an easy, convenient way to save money, then Acorns is for you. Just be advised that you will have less control over where your money is invested at the price of convenience. Be wary of the monthly fee. Lower balances may not yield enough to make the monthly dollar fee worth it. Also, College students can use the app for free.

Robinhood

  • Price: $0
  • Minimum: $0
  • Who’s It For: Some experience trading, Low balances
  • Hands On/Off: Hands on

If you’re looking to get a little more involved with your trading, this Robinhood app is for you. Users will enjoy the app’s streamlined interface (although serious traders may find it lacking). The ability to trade in individual stocks gives you more freedom than apps like Acorns. The lack of fees and $0 minimum makes it the best priced app on the market. Robinhood is perfect for novice traders looking to get more involved and diversify their holdings. Brand new, inexperienced investors might not find Robinhood to their liking. However, anyone looking to trade individual stocks will enjoy the app.  

Betterment

  • Price: .25% of holdings ($1000 accounts will pay $2.50 a year)
  • Minimum: $0
  • Who’s It For: Goal-based investors, retirees
  • Hands On/Off: Hands off

Betterment is one of the oldest and most trusted investment guidance apps. Account holders enjoy plenty of access to financial planners. You can choose from a selection of IRAs and investment accounts categorized by risk. The goal-setting feature is where Betterment really shines. You can track spending habits and monitor deposits and dividends to see if you’re on track to meet your financial goals. Betterment is very easy to use and makes investing easy to understand. It’s good for investing as well as overall financial management. The low minimums and pricing allow flexibility when it comes to investments.

 

These are the best micro investing apps available today. Investing money isn’t something that just wealthy people do. With changing technology, the average consumer has the means to not only invest, but to learn and grow financially right from your phone. Be sure to balance out the cost of an account against your possible returns. Whatever your financial goals may be, there is an app out there to meet your needs.  

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