Investing has changed. Gone are the days when you simply deposited money into a stock portfolio, only to see it grow slowly over time. Today’s investors need a little help finding their way in the sea of options. That’s where the following apps come in handy. To help you find and filter worthwhile investments, we’ve examined hundreds of different apps and ranked our favorites based on functionality, ease of use and criteria like design and social integration.
Table of Contents
Best Apps For Investing News
- CNBC Breaking Business News App
The CNBC Breaking Business News app (available on iPhone and Android) is NBC’s flagship financial news app. It gives users access to actionable business news, financial information and market data. The app keeps its users up to date with breaking news alerts that are pushed through even when the app is closed.
The tool allows users to monitor real-time stock quotes and to view interactive charts, receive global business news coverage and watch full episodes of CNBC shows such as “Mad Money” and “American Greed.” The app allows for a customizable watch list to track specific stocks and gain real-time access to associated business news headlines.
- TheStreet App
TheStreet started as an online informational website but has since rolled out an app for both iPhone and Android. The app provides access to financial news, analysis and stock-picking insights from experts associated with the company.
The app supplies up-to-date market news, opinions and commentaries, technical analyses and actionable data. It also delivers detailed quotes and analysis of stocks and offers a proprietary stock rating model called TheStreet Ratings. The app aims to aggregate information to provide a multimedia financial experience based on data, articles, and videos.
- Bloomberg: Business News App
The Bloomberg: Business News app gives access to the company’s global business and financial news, up-to-date market data and proprietary portfolio tools. Bloomberg sets its app apart with articles written by the award-winning business and financial journalists at Bloomberg.
The app (available on iPhone and Android) allows users to receive the latest market data, which can be filtered by specific regions or sectors. Bloomberg’s watchlist lets users track securities and other investments, and the company’s audio and video services allow users to receive pertinent financial information with their media channel of choice.
When it comes to investing and stock trading, news and reaction time can make or break an investor.
- Fox Business App
The Fox Business app (available on iPhone and Android) lets users stay connected to the constantly changing business world. The app can track financial markets and send financial alerts to its users. Users can search for stocks by ticker symbol and create watchlists by adding stocks to the app’s My Stocks Page.
Additionally, users can access up-to-the-minute news and market data through the use of live Fox business broadcasts and watch clips from their favorite Fox Business Network shows. The app’s users can also repost and share articles and videos from the Fox Business app on most social media outlets.
- Barron’s App
Barron’s is known as the premier investing news magazine, providing financial analysis and insight in print, and more recently through its mobile app. Available on iPhone and Android, Barron’s subscribers can access the company’s articles every weekend from this app, along with commentary from Barron’s Online edition seven days a week and analysis every weekday.
In 2019, a subscription to Barron’s cost around $19.99 a month and gave subscribers access to the app and Barron’s website. Users can save articles on the mobile app and access them on the website, and vice versa.
- MarketWatch App
The MarketWatch app (on iPhone and Android) gives its users access to the latest business news, financial data and market information. Through the use of the app, people can receive breaking news coverage, the most recent market data, and market alerts. The tool also provides an opportunity to create a watchlist and track MarketWatch stories related to the user’s stock picks.
- The Wall Street Journal App
Historically, The Wall Street Journal is one of the most reputable and reliable sources for financial information. Through the Wall Street Journal, both iPhone and Android using subscribers can customize news and notifications to fit their preferences. The publication requires a subscription that cost just under $40 a month as of early 2019.
- SeekingAlpha Portfolio App
SeekingAlpha is offered to subscribers for free or on a premium basis. Available on iPhone and Android, It is one of the financial industry’s top sources for stock news alerts. It also provides in-depth research on a full range of publicly traded stocks and managed funds. Subscribers can receive stock alerts throughout the day on companies and funds that they are following.
Best apps for investors
Invstr – Best app for education
Invstr is what you get when you mix learning, real-life investing and community into an app that’s designed to give beginning investors a way to get into stocks, especially if you like games. The app combines a fantasy stock game, where you can assist in managing a virtual portfolio, with access to investors’ thoughts on stocks and other investments.
The fantasy game gives you $1 million in virtual money, and you can use the app’s social network and news feed to source ideas. The month’s top performers win real cash, too. And if you want to turn some of those fantasy picks into real-life stakes, you can buy fractional shares and whole shares commission-free in the app. The app will even give new users $30 worth of Bitcoin when they open and fund an account with $100. Invstr has also started offering commission-free trading in cryptocurrencies.
Reasons to get this app: You want to learn from an investing community, hear why they like certain stocks and play a fun fantasy game.
Acorns – Best app for saving
Acorns remains one of the most popular of the new breed of savings apps, because of how easy it is to use. You really don’t have to pay much attention once you’ve set it up. Link a debit or credit card to your account, and Acorns will round up the total on purchases to the next dollar and invest that difference into one of a few ETF portfolios.
The cost is a modest $3 per month for Acorns Personal, which includes the investment account, an individual retirement account (IRA), a metal debit card and more. You’ll be able to open one of three IRA versions: the traditional, Roth or a SEP, and can roll over an existing 401(k) or IRA.
Acorns chooses your portfolio based on the targeted time until your retirement (calculated as age 59 ½), becoming more conservative as you near that age, a timing that may not be appropriate for all investors. This tier offers an FDIC-protected checking account, too, with no additional fees, fee-free access to thousands of ATMs and early access to direct deposits.
And for a total of $5 per month, you can add Acorns Family, which includes the features of the first tier as well as investment accounts for children.
Reasons to get this app: You like getting automatic investments while you’re spending without worrying about it. You like retirement investing without the hassle.
Minimum balance required: $0 for savings account
Fees: $3 or $5 per month depending on the service tier
Wealthbase – Best app for trading games and contests
Wealthbase is a newer entrant into the world of stock market games, and it may be the most user-friendly investing app out there for having fun and picking stocks. You can set up games with friends to last however long you want — a few weeks, days, even just until the end of the day.
Two things set Wealthbase apart in the stock simulator world: first, the app marries social media with stock picking. You’ll see a feed of stocks your friends are picking, with daily updates of who’s winning, and you can engage in a little friendly “trash talk.” Second, the app runs very smoothly — no delays to load, no hiccups. Even if you’re not a huge stock-picker, you’ll have fun here. And you can trade crypto in the simulation as well.
Reasons to get this app: You like picking stocks and playing games in a social environment with friends and colleagues.
Wealthfront – Best app for portfolio management
Wealthfront is one of the largest independent robo-advisors, and for a small fee it can manage your money, whether that’s in a taxable account or an IRA. Wealthfront uses hundreds of ETFs to construct your portfolio and takes into account how much risk you want to take as well as when you’ll need the money. As you deposit money, Wealthfront will add it to your portfolio and keep your account balanced and on target toward your goal.
Wealthfront’s management fee runs 0.25 percent annually, which is the industry standard. It’s an eminently reasonable price for the features on offer, including tax-loss harvesting, which effectively covers the annual fee for many clients, says the company. Wealthfront also brings an attractive cash management account (even if you don’t sign up for the investment account), and you’ll receive early access to direct-deposited paychecks and a debit card – all without a monthly fee.
UBS is purchasing Wealthfront in 2022 and will continue to operate it under the Wealthfront banner.
Reasons to get this app: All you’ll need to do is add money to the account and Wealthfront manages your portfolio to help you reach your goal. The cash management account is cool, too. As a Bankrate user, get $5,000 managed for free when you open a Wealthfront investment account.
Minimum balance required: $500
Fees: Management fee of 0.25 percent of assets annually
Stockpile – Best app for gifting stocks
Stockpile is a neat app because it allows you to buy fractional shares of companies. So if you don’t have $300 to buy that one expensive tech stock, you can buy a half or a third of it, instead. Stockpile does not charge any trading fees.
The other neat thing about Stockpile is that it allows you to give a gift card that’s redeemable for stock, so it may be a way to get a younger relative into investing in a fun way. You don’t even need an account to send a gift. Stockpile allows kids to track their investments at any time, and you can set a list of approved stocks for them to trade. The app lets kids share a wish list of stocks with family and friends.
Reasons to get this app: You like investing but don’t have enough to buy high-priced stock and you like the idea of gifting stock to younger relatives.
Fidelity Investments – Best app for managing money all-in-one
If you wanted to live your whole financial life on Fidelity Investments, you could do it with little issue – and have the top integrated experience. At Fidelity, you can get an investment account, a checking account, an IRA, a business retirement account such as a SEP IRA, bill paying, a savings account, a robo-advisor account and even credit card accounts, to cover the big ones.
You can get all your finances in order with one company on one dashboard, and never feel like you’re missing a thing. You’ll get solid research on ETFs and mutual funds, tons of articles on budgeting, investing and personal finance and webinars, too. Plus, if you never need help, you’ll be connected with a courteous and helpful Fidelity rep in short order.
Reasons to get this app: You want all your financial accounts under one roof, and you enjoy being treated like a valuable customer.
Minimum balance required: $0
Robinhood – Best app for active trading
Robinhood is the app to have if you like a smooth interface and avoiding trading commissions, whether you’re trading stocks, ETFs, options or cryptocurrency. You’ll get to do it all with no commission and using a slick mobile interface that makes smooth work of it all. The stripped-down app is simple to navigate, and after a while you’ll move intuitively from screen to screen as you trade the market.
You can access a stock’s page from a search bar at the top of the screen and then pull up charts and vital statistics. Also useful is a feed that aggregates stories from news and investing sites, so that you keep on top of what’s going on. After you’ve decided what you want to trade and enter the number of shares to buy or sell, swipe up and the order is on its way. (Here’s Bankrate’s full review.)
Reasons to get this app: You like trading stocks (as well as ETFs, options and cryptocurrency) for free and having a simple way to quickly do so.
Minimum balance required: $0
Fees: No commissions for stock, ETF, options or crypto trades
Charles Schwab – Best app for beginners
Charles Schwab does well for experts, but it’s also a great app for beginners, because of all the resources it provides. Schwab provides tons of research and education, helping newer investors get up to speed on topics such as investing and personal finance. It also offers fractional shares, meaning you can invest all your money into your stocks, rather than have idle investment money sitting around. And of course, you’ll get commission-free stock and ETF trades.
Schwab is also great for mutual fund investors, with more than 4,000 no-transaction fee funds, one of the largest selections in the industry. You’ll also get highly responsive customer service that gets your questions answered quickly. As if that weren’t enough, you’ll get one of the best sign-on promotions around, with a cash bonus that starts with just a $25,000 deposit.
Reasons to get this app: You like investing with a friendly company that starts off in the right direction and then helps you along the way.
Minimum balance required: $0
Ellevest – Best app for socially responsible investing
Ellevest is one of the top-ranked robo-advisors, but it’s also the top app for socially responsible investing. Ellevest’s mission is to help women investors make smart investing decisions (though, of course, anyone can become a client). It does so by creating investment portfolios and plans that take into account the differing circumstances of women, such as lower lifetime earnings.
Ellevest allows clients to build portfolios that incorporate up to 53 percent of their portfolio in ESG or social impact funds – what it calls its Impact portfolio. These funds invest in companies that have more women leaders, that support affordable housing and community services, and that have higher standards for sustainability. The Impact portfolio costs only modestly more than Ellevest’s low-cost core portfolio, just $13-$19 per year on average for every $10,000 invested.
Reasons to get this app: You want a socially responsible portfolio that can offer attractive returns and also makes it easy for you to invest.
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