13 best investing apps for beginners in 2023 (2024)

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When taking control of your finances, investing is one way to diversify your income and grow your wealth. Modern-day technology is making investing for beginners more accessible. Beginner investing apps are a common resource to learn how to manage your portfolio and build a secure financial future.

13 best investing apps for beginners in 2023 (1)Image: best-investing-apps-for-beginners-post-image-1

To help you narrow down which app is right for you, we compiled the 13 best investment apps for beginners (in alphabetical order). We’ve only included apps that can help you diversify your portfolio and learn as you go.

  1. Acorns
  2. Betterment
  3. Charles Schwab
  4. E*TRADE
  5. Fundrise
  6. Invstr
  7. M1 Finance
  8. Public
  9. Robinhood
  10. SoFi Invest
  11. Stash
  12. Stockpile
  13. TD Ameritrade

1. Acorns

Acorns makes it easy to invest with whatever you have by automatically investing your spare change. Users can quickly set up an account and automate micro-investments starting at $3 for the personal plan. Acorns comes with expert-built portfolios.

Features

  • Fees: $3 to $5 per month
  • Commissions: None for accounts under $1 million
  • Minimum balance: None to open. To invest, you can sign up with Round Ups to automatically invest spare change, or else you’ll need a one-time investment of at least $5

Pros

  • Invests spare change from purchases automatically
  • Educational and investment support
  • Earn bonus investments shopping at select retailers

Cons

  • Monthly fees required to have an account

2. Betterment

Designed to help you reach your goals, Betterment is great for beginners because it includes automated investing. Betterment can help you manage your money, invest it, trade and rebalance your portfolio — all on autopilot.

Features

  • Fees: Annual fees of 0.25% or $4/month; various fund fees
  • Commissions: Trading fees up to 0.15% per trade on crypto
  • Minimum balance: None for digital; $100,000 for Premium

Pros

  • Hands-off investing
  • Goal-oriented platform
  • Socially responsible options

Cons

  • Annual fees for advising
  • High minimum balance for the Premium plan

3. Charles Schwab

Charles Schwab’s free and expansive research offerings include real-time news, a quarterly magazine, research reports and more. As you level up your skills, you can use the mobile app to trade and monitor your positions at all hours, as well as customize your investing experience with alerts, summaries and notifications.

Features

  • Trading fees: None
  • Commissions: Varying fees by security type, from $0–$250
  • Minimum balance: None

Pros

  • Large investment selection
  • Robust research tools
  • No account fees or minimums
  • Biometric security

Cons

  • Small cash sweep rate for uninvested funds

4. E*TRADE

E*TRADE offers commission-free investing to beginners with an easy-to-use app interface. The app has a wide investment selection and is compatible with mobile, tablets and Apple wearables. Users can access real-time news, Bloomberg TV and third-party research to stay updated on the market.

Features

  • Fees: None
  • Commissions: None for online U.S. stock, ETFs and options trade (65 cents per options contract, $1.50 per futures contract, $1 per bond)
  • Minimum balance: None

Pros

  • Large investment selection
  • Research offerings
  • User-friendly interface
  • Apple Watch compatibility

Cons

  • High minimum balances and fees for managed portfolios

5. Fundrise

Another way to diversify your portfolio is through real estate. In just a few minutes, you can create an account with a low investment minimum, select your preferred investing strategy and sit back as Fundrise diversifies your portfolio.

Features

  • Fees: 0.15% annual advisory fee, 0.85% annual asset management fee for standard portfolios
  • Commissions: None
  • Minimum balance: $10 for a Starter account, varying minimums for other account types

Pros

  • Low fees and balance minimum
  • Open to nonaccredited investors
  • Investment portfolio of $7+ billion

Cons

  • Not good for short-term investing
  • Investments may not be liquid
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6. Invstr

Get started with Invstr by learning lessons from Invstr Academy. After gaining experience and confidence, you can start investing in fractional shares with as little as $5.

Features

  • Fees: Up to $3.99 per month, plus withdrawal and deposit fees
  • Commissions: 99 cents per fractional trade
  • Minimum balance: None, but $25,000 to day trade (SEC)

Pros

  • Practice investing without risking your money with Fantasy Finance
  • Educational resources
  • Large investing community
  • Portfolio and performance insights

Cons

  • A limited number of trades per day (unlimited with subscription)
  • Can only invest in U.S. stocks
  • Lots of fees

7. M1 Finance

M1 Finance is an investing platform that offers flexibility for beginners. You can choose from pre-made expert portfolios or cultivate your investment strategy by building a customized portfolio for free. You can enjoy the flexibility of this app for free, but be aware that there are miscellaneous fees and a $100 minimum brokerage account balance before you get started.

Features

  • Fees: No annual or monthly fees for non-Plus members, but other fees may apply
  • Commissions: None
  • Minimum balance: $100 to $500 for certain account types

Pros

  • Customizability
  • Automated investing
  • Fractional shares

Cons

  • $100 minimum account balance
  • Inactivity fee

8. Public

Public allows beginners to buy fractional shares of their favorite companies for any amount of money they choose, commission-free. And with the ability to follow other investors on the app, you can see what everyone else is investing in, learn from them, participate in group messages and share your experiences.

Features

  • Fees: $96 annually for Premium membership
  • Commissions: None
  • Minimum balance: None

Pros

  • Social component
  • No hidden fees or commissions
  • Referral program

Cons

  • Moderate annual fee

9. Robinhood

Robinhood offers commission-free investing opportunities with no minimum balance and no fees. Users can customize their portfolios, trade in real time and invest any amount they choose thanks to fractional shares starting at just $1. Robinhood is a solid option for beginners wishing to trade stocks and ETFs, and new users can get their first stock free.

Features

  • Fees: None, or $5 per month for Robinhood Gold
  • Commissions: None
  • Minimum balance: None

Pros

  • Fractional shares
  • Cryptocurrency options
  • Retirement options

Cons

  • No free research offerings
  • No bonds or mutual funds

10. SoFi Invest

As one of the top-rated investing apps in the Apple Store, SoFi Invest is made for all experience levels. Beginners can opt for automated investing and let SoFi’s robo-advisor build wealth. For the more hands-on beginner, you also have the freedom to diversify your portfolio by choosing from crypto, stocks or exchange-traded funds (or ETFs).

Features

  • Fees: None
  • Commissions: None
  • Minimum balance: None

Pros

  • User-friendly platform
  • Affordable trading
  • Easy access to investing insights

Cons

  • Limited investment options

11. Stash

Stash allows you to invest in fractional shares through its two monthly subscription plans. It also offers a great learning center with resources to teach you about investing and to help you keep up to date on money news.

Features

  • Fees: $3 to $9 per month
  • Commissions: None for trading
  • Minimum balance: $5 for Smart Portfolio

Pros

  • Educational resources
  • Personalized investment advice
  • Automated investing

Cons

  • Monthly fees can be high compared to a low account balance
  • Only four trading windows

12. Stockpile

Stockpile allows beginners to start investing with as little as $4.95 per month through its Stockpile Membership plan. Its trading platform lets you purchase fractional shares in any dollar amount or gift stock ownership for any amount with a gift card. You can choose from various stocks and ETFs with no account fees or trading commissions through Stockpile.

Features

  • Fees: None with membership
  • Commissions: None with membership
  • Minimum balance: None

Pros

  • Redeemable stock gift cards
  • Fractional shares
  • Educational resources

Cons

  • Membership required to use services

13. TD Ameritrade

This award-winning trading platform is a good mobile investing option for beginners and active traders alike. With no account minimums and no commissions, beginners can level up their learning with how-to videos. The TD Ameritrade app also offers free research in the form of market trend reports, charts and updates accessible via phone, tablet or smartwatch.

Features

  • Fees: No hidden fees
  • Commissions: None for online U.S. stock, ETFs and options trade; 65 cents per options contract fee
  • Minimum balance: None

Pros

  • Ample research and educational offerings
  • Large investment selection
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Apple Watch compatibility

Cons

  • No fractional shares
  • Adviser program fee (a percentage of managed assets)

FAQs about investing for beginners

How can I start investing with as little as $1?

Investors can buy fractional shares on investment apps for as little as $1.

Can apps be used for active trading?

Investment apps such as Charles Schwab or Robinhood have active trading capabilities.

Which assets are available to trade?

You can use investment apps to trade stocks, bonds, ETFs and mutual funds.

I bring a wealth of knowledge and expertise in the realm of personal finance and investment, having navigated the intricacies of the financial landscape for several years. My insights are grounded in practical experience, having successfully managed portfolios and explored diverse investment avenues. Now, let's delve into the concepts discussed in the article about the 13 best investment apps for beginners.

The article outlines various investment platforms tailored for those new to investing. Here's a breakdown of the key concepts and information presented:

  1. Acorns:

    • Features: Automated micro-investments, expert-built portfolios.
    • Fees: $3 to $5 per month.
    • Pros: Invests spare change, educational support.
  2. Betterment:

    • Features: Automated investing, goal-oriented platform.
    • Fees: Annual fees of 0.25% or $4/month; various fund fees.
    • Pros: Hands-off investing, socially responsible options.
  3. Charles Schwab:

    • Features: Free research offerings, mobile app for trading.
    • Fees: Varying fees by security type.
    • Pros: Large investment selection, robust research tools.
  4. *ETRADE:**

    • Features: Commission-free investing, real-time news.
    • Fees: None for online U.S. stock, ETFs, and options trade.
    • Pros: Wide investment selection, user-friendly interface.
  5. Fundrise:

    • Features: Real estate diversification, low investment minimum.
    • Fees: 0.15% annual advisory fee, 0.85% annual asset management fee.
    • Pros: Low fees, open to nonaccredited investors.
  6. Invstr:

    • Features: Invstr Academy for learning, fractional shares.
    • Fees: Up to $3.99 per month.
    • Pros: Practice investing with Fantasy Finance, educational resources.
  7. M1 Finance:

    • Features: Customizable portfolios, automated investing.
    • Fees: No annual or monthly fees for non-Plus members.
    • Pros: Flexibility, fractional shares.
  8. Public:

    • Features: Buy fractional shares, social component.
    • Fees: $96 annually for Premium membership.
    • Pros: No hidden fees, follow other investors.
  9. Robinhood:

    • Features: Commission-free investing, fractional shares.
    • Fees: None, or $5 per month for Robinhood Gold.
    • Pros: Cryptocurrency options, no minimum balance.
  10. SoFi Invest:

    • Features: Automated investing, diverse portfolio options.
    • Fees: None.
    • Pros: User-friendly platform, affordable trading.
  11. Stash:

    • Features: Invest in fractional shares, subscription plans.
    • Fees: $3 to $9 per month.
    • Pros: Educational resources, personalized advice.
  12. Stockpile:

    • Features: Start investing with a low amount, fractional shares.
    • Fees: None with membership.
    • Pros: Redeemable stock gift cards, educational resources.
  13. TD Ameritrade:

    • Features: Award-winning trading platform, no account minimums.
    • Fees: No hidden fees.
    • Pros: Ample research and educational offerings, 24/7 customer support.

Additionally, the article addresses common questions about investing for beginners, covering topics like starting with as little as $1, active trading capabilities, and the assets available for trading on investment apps. If you have specific inquiries about any of these platforms or investment strategies, feel free to ask.

13 best investing apps for beginners in 2023 (2024)

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