3 Simple Investment Apps to Help You Take on Wall Street

3 Simple Investment Apps to Help You Take on Wall Street
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The stock market has received plenty of attention recently. If you’ve been following the GameStop situation you might be wondering how you can get in on this action and start investing yourself. Luckily, there’s an app for that.

Given that popular trading apps like Robinhood aren’t available in Australia, here are some alternative investment apps to get you started.

eToro

eToro is perfect for Australians looking to invest in the U.S. stock market. The company offers commission-free trading on U.S. stocks meaning, if you want a piece of companies like Apple, Amazon and Tesla, you can have it.

A popular feature of eToro is its ability to let you copy the trading techniques of top users, so if you have no idea where to begin you can follow what the pros are doing.

Pros:

  • Copy-trading — imitate the stock investments of top users
  • Zero brokerage shares
  • CFDs, Forex and Cryptocurrency trading options
  • US stocks available
  • Social options to connect with other users and discuss market ideas
  • Fractional investing options

Cons:

  • $US5 withdrawal fee and $US10 inactivity fee
  • No Australian-listed stocks available
  • Currency conversion fee from AUD to USD

eToro is available on the Apple app and Google Play stores.

Stake

Similar to eToro, Stake allows Aussies to easily access U.S.-listed stocks with no brokerage fees. The only fee you’ll cop is the currency conversion from USD to AUD. Despite trading in more than 3,800 U.S. stocks, Stake is actually an Australian-owned platform.

It’s a great starting point for amateur traders entering the Wall Street market.

Pros:

  • No brokerage fees when buying or selling
  • Fractional investing options
  • Real-time trades
  • Accounts are insured up to $US500,000
  • Simple and easy to use interface
  • Stake automatically submits a U.S. tax form for non-U.S. traders

Cons:

  • Fees charged for AUD to USD transfers in and out of your account (minimum $US2)
  • 2% card fee when paying by credit or debit cards
  • No Australian stocks available
  • One-off U.S. tax form fee of $5

Stake is available on the Apple app and Google Play stores.

Raiz

For something a bit different, Raiz, previously known as Acorns, is a micro-investing app that automatically invests your spare cash.

Raiz will invest your money into a portfolio of exchange-traded funds (EFTs) with six portfolios on offer: conservative, moderately conservative, moderate, moderately aggressive, aggressive and emerald. Think of this is as similar to how your superannuation is invested.

Raiz is different to Stake and eToro as it doesn’t specifically let you choose which stocks to invest in. But it’s an easy way for new investors to get started and it makes good use of your spare change.

Pros:

  • Custom portfolios — allows users to build their own portfolios from 14 different EFTs and Bitcoin
  • Round up — automatically rounds up purchases and puts spare change into investments
  • No account minimums
  • Set recurring payments
  • Invest lump sums
  • Personal information is stored
  • Free to download
  • Money is insured against fraud and criminal activity

Cons:

  • $2.50 fee per month if your account has less than $10,000 and 0.275% p/month for $10,000+ accounts
  • Can’t choose direct stocks to invest in
  • You must give your banking information to the app for it to work — so this comes down to how you feel about your own data security

You can download Raiz on the Apple app and Google Play stores.


It’s worth noting that all investment apps involve a degree of risk. Like we’ve seen recently with GameStop, the stock market is unpredictable and if it tanks, your money can too.