The Best Investment Apps are Here!
Smart investors don’t prance into an investment firm with a wad of cash and dollar signs in their eyes. They have a plan: they know what they have, and what they want. The Internet has made it easier than ever to manage your money, from your couch, and for cheap. In this mission you’ll learn about the best investment apps for financial planning. Consider this spring-cleaning for your finances.
Before we get into planning and tracking, let's make sure you're set up with the right investment broker. As you probably know, investing apps have totally disrupted the stock brokerage industry. And at Wall Street Survivor, no list of best investment apps would be complete without our favorite broker app: Robinhood.
Robinhood is offering HUGE incentives for opening an account right now! Check it out!
So How Do I Open a Robinhood Account and Get up to $1,000 in FREE STOCK?
To open a Robinhood account, all you need is your name, address, and email. If you want to fund your account immediately, you will also need your bank account routing and account number.
As its current promotion, Robinhood is giving away a FREE STOCK (valued at $5 to $500) to anyone that opens a new account this month if you click on the promo image below. Then, once you open and fund YOUR account with at least $10, you will receive more free stock (again valued at $5 to $500) for referring your friends and family. The more people you refer, the more free stock you get. Click on this promo below to start your Robinhood account application and get your first FREE stock.....
Bonus Tip: Use this link to get a free stock (up to $500 value) when you open and fund your account with at least $10: sign up for Robinhood today, you'll get a free stock (up to $500 value!) FURTHERMORE, for each friend that you refer, you will receive ANOTHER free stock valued at up to $500. This is perfectly legit and you WILL get more free stock for every friend or family member you refer.
Why do they give away so much free stock? Because they spend their advertising dollars this way instead of buying TV, radio, print, or online ads! They WANT you to refer friends!
Best Investment Apps and Websites for Planning
First, ESPlannerBasic is a free financial planning service developed in part by a Boston University economics professor. The site asks you to answer questions about your current and projected annual income, the age at which you expect to retire, when you plan to send your kids to university, and much more (it’s very thorough).
Based on your answers, ESPlannerBasic recommends annual amounts for living, spending, saving, and investing. Note: the site is designed for (but not restricted to) the United States, accounting for American federal and state taxes and Social Security.
NetWise and Voyant
Next, NetWise and Voyant are two other financial planning websites that offer a plethora of services customized to your personal means and goals. Both of these websites will connect you with financial advisors and both have fees, though Voyant offers a free trial.
Finally, Mint is a free online budgeting service. Mint helps you organize and track all aspects of your financial life – from investments to cell phone payments to bar tabs – on one clean and clear interface. You can make budgets, set goals, and track your progress.
Best Investment Apps to Track Investments
Now you’re planned, budgeted, and invested. You can crack open a cold one and relax now, right? Wrong! Think of managing your money as a practice, like painting or playing the piano: it’s an ongoing process and you are constantly learning and improving (and hopefully making money!). Monitoring your finances doesn’t have to be an all-consuming endeavor. There are some spiffy online portfolio aggregators to make your life a whole lot easier and save you the cost of a financial advisor.
First up, SigFig is a web and mobile app that allows you to monitor all of your accounts on one, easy-to-read interface called a “dashboard”. And it’s free. Here are some of SigFig’s features:
- Identifies investments that are underperforming and makes suggestions for changes to your portfolio.
- Gets stock market quotes in real time.
- Compares your portfolio to several market indexes, and your profile to thousands of other investors.
- Connects you with a financial advisor if you have questions.
SigFig syncs with all of your accounts, meaning you need to give them your passwords and pins. They are ultra-secure: your data is encrypted by 256-bit SSL security and not even SigFig employees can see your accounts. Also, SigFig is read-only, meaning no one, not even you, can trade or withdraw funds through SigFig.
Additionally, Personal Capital is free web/mobile financial advisory app. The app has a dashboard-style interface and aggregates all of your accounts like SigFig, but unlike SigFig, you can move money around on the site. If you choose, you can pay to invest with their team, but they require a minimum investment of $100,000.
Best Investment Apps for News Flow
Usually, a lot of noise surrounds the stock market. With an abundance of news outlets and bloggers closely tracking the markets and opining about (and often contradicting) how or in what you should invest, it’s normal to feel completely overwhelmed. Earlier we discussed web apps to help you make sense of your own finances, now we will introduce you to a few that can help you keep up with the market at large.
Here are some apps to help you keep track of the market:
CNBC’s iPad app tracks the stock market in real time. This free app delivers breaking news, up-to-the-second quotes, and interactive charts on an easy-to-read dashboard. You can read articles, watch videos, and customize the news ticker, which runs along the bottom of the screen, to show industries and portfolios of your choosing.
Stocktwits is a Twitter-like social networking service for investors and traders. Rather than track the markets, Stocktwits provides an interactive forum for users to share information and ideas. You can follow and discuss specific stocks by searching “cashtags” (e.g. $APPL, $GOOG) and follow the “tweets” of investors and traders that you trust. Like Twitter, you can join the conversation in 140 characters or less.
The website Seeking Alpha focuses on stock market analysis, with over 250 vetted articles published every day. Seeking Alpha is trusted and widely read by money mangers, investment bankers, and other industry types.
Finally, the veterans of finance journalism: The Wall Street Journal (particularly Market Watch), Bloomberg, Yahoo! Finance, and CNNMoney. These sites are jam-packed with articles and stats that may be of interest to investors and regular humans alike.
Best Investment Apps for Asset Allocation
Believe it or not, what you invest in (particular securities like Zipcar stocks, government bonds, etc.) is secondary to how you invest: how you divvy up your money among the three big asset classes – equities (stocks), fixed-income (bonds) and cash and cash equivalents. This is called asset allocation and it is the considered the most important decision you will make (and continue to make) as an investor.
Asset-allocation calculators are available online and suggest mixes based on your answers to questionnaires. Here some of the free ones:
First, CNNMoney asks you four brief questions to assess your tolerance for risk, and generates a basic asset allocation mix based on your answers. It also offers simple calculators that estimate, for example, how much you should be earning if you wish to retire early. The site also offers a bevy of articles and tips for the unseasoned investor.
Second, TIAA CREF asks six multiple-choice questions. Each question has a sidebar with extra information to help you give the most accurate answers.
Third, Yahoo! Finance analyzes your investment personality by asking what you would do in different scenarios. Questions are multiple-choice.
Practicing asset allocation means keeping tabs on your portfolio and making the necessary adjustments as your needs and goals change over time. Mindful asset allocation is crucial to getting the most out of your portfolio.