The 11 best robo-advisors of 2022: Invest in automated portfolios

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Robo-advisors are digital investment platforms that use computer algorithms and/or expert oversight to build personalized portfolios for retail investors. These automated investing accounts commonly use ETFs as their primary investment vehicles, but some also offer mutual funds, index funds, and crypto investments.

SoFi SoFi Automated Investing

SoFi SoFi Automated Investing

SoFi SoFi Automated Investing

Pros Cons

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No account minimum or management fees to invest

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Goal planning and automatic portfolio rebalancing

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Range of other account options across SoFi website

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SoFi offers complimentary CFP access across all accounts

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No tax-loss harvesting

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No socially responsible portfolio options

Highlights

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  • Promotion: None at this time.
  • Consider it if: You're new to investing and want to leave the trading decisions to professionals.

Additional Reading

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The best robo-advisors offer things like low fees, copious portfolio options, flexible account types, and easily accessible customer service.

Compare the best robo-advisors

Charles Schwab Schwab Intelligent Portfolios

Schwab Intelligent Portfolios

Charles Schwab Schwab Intelligent Portfolios

Schwab Intelligent Portfolios

On Charles Schwab's website

Charles Schwab Schwab Intelligent Portfolios

On Charles Schwab's website

Pros Cons

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No advisory fees

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Automatic rebalancing; portfolio re-adjusts back to target allocation any time you withdraw or add funds

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More than 51 ETFs available (including Schwab ETFs)

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24/7 customer support

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$5,000 minimum is on the higher side

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Tax-loss harvesting only available for those with $40,000 in their account

Highlights

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  • Promotion: Referred users can get up to $1,000

Betterment Betterment Investing

Account Minimum

$0 ($100,000 premium plan)

Fees

0.25% digital plan; 0.40% premium

Betterment Betterment Investing

Account Minimum

$0 ($100,000 premium plan)

Fees

0.25% digital plan; 0.40% premium

Betterment Betterment Investing

Investment Details

Account Minimum

$0 ($100,000 premium plan)

Fees

0.25% digital plan; 0.40% premium

Pros Cons

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No minimum for standard investing account

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Goal-based planning, tax-loss harvesting, charitable giving, and socially responsible investing available

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Access to certified financial planners

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Mobile app with external account syncing options

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You'll have to pay to consult a human advisor, unless you have the premium plan

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Limited investment selection

Highlights

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  • Promotion: None at this time.
  • App store rating: 4.7 iOS/4.6 Android
  • Consider it if: You want access to robo-advice with multiple service levels.

Additional Reading

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Ally Invest Ally Invest Robo Portfolios

Ally Invest Robo Portfolios

Ally Invest Ally Invest Robo Portfolios

Ally Invest Robo Portfolios

Ally Invest Ally Invest Robo Portfolios

Pros Cons

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Low minimum and no advisory fee

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Ally Invest sets aside 30% of your portfolio as as an interest-earning cash buffer

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Four portfolios to choose from

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Portfolios are designed by human professionals but managed and monitored by technology

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24/7 support and mobile access

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No one-on-one human advisor consultations

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No tax-loss harvesting

Highlights

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  • Promotion: None at this time.

Additional Reading

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Ellevest Ellevest

Account Minimum

$1 - $240

Fees

$54 - $97 annually; $5 or $9/month

Ellevest Ellevest

Account Minimum

$1 - $240

Fees

$54 - $97 annually; $5 or $9/month

Ellevest Ellevest

Investment Details

Account Minimum

$1 - $240

Fees

$54 - $97 annually; $5 or $9/month

Pros Cons

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Personalized, automated investment advice with a $0 minimum requirement

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Monthly plans include discounted access to certified financial planners

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Automated IRA accounts and 401(k)/403(b) rollovers available

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Private wealth management for individuals, families, and institutions who have at least $1 million to invest

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No active trading opportunities available; money is mainly invested in stock ETFs and bond ETFs

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You can only open individual investment accounts; joint accounts or custodial accounts not available

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No tax-loss harvesting

Highlights

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  • Promotion: None at this time.
  • Consider it if: You're looking for a one-stop shop for financial planning.

Additional Reading

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SoFi SoFi Automated Investing

SoFi SoFi Automated Investing

SoFi SoFi Automated Investing

Pros Cons

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No account minimum or management fees to invest

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Goal planning and automatic portfolio rebalancing

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Range of other account options across SoFi website

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SoFi offers complimentary CFP access across all accounts

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No tax-loss harvesting

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No socially responsible portfolio options

Highlights

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  • Promotion: None at this time.
  • Consider it if: You're new to investing and want to leave the trading decisions to professionals.

Additional Reading

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Marcus Invest Marcus Invest

Investment Types

Stock ETFs and bond ETFs

Marcus Invest Marcus Invest

Investment Types

Stock ETFs and bond ETFs

On Marcus Invest's website

Marcus Invest Marcus Invest

On Marcus Invest's website

Pros Cons

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Investment portfolios tailored toward investor risk tolerance and time horizon

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More than 50 stock and bond ETF portfolios available

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Socially responsible and smart beta portfolio options

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Account includes strategic asset allocation and portfolio monitoring

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App doesn't include financial advisor access

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Goldman Sachs Smart Beta portfolios not available to IRA account holders

Highlights

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  • Promotion: None at this time.

Additional Reading

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Interactive Advisors Interactive Advisors

Account Minimum

$100 - $50,000

Interactive Advisors Interactive Advisors

Account Minimum

$100 - $50,000

On Interactive Advisors's website

Interactive Advisors Interactive Advisors

On Interactive Advisors's website

Investment Details

Account Minimum

$100 - $50,000

Pros Cons

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Vast range of portfolio options, including socially responsible, smart beta, and asset allocation portfolios

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Can easily trade other investments (eg. stocks, bonds, and mutual funds) on your own through Interactive Brokers

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Goal tracker tool to stay on track with your portfolio's projected performance

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54 of its available portfolios only require a $100 minimum

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Investment minimums and fees can be higher for actively managed portfolios

Highlights

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  • Promotion: None at this time.

Additional Reading

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Fidelity Fidelity Go

Fees

0%, $3/month, or 0.35%/year

Investment Types

Fidelity Flex mutual funds

Fidelity Fidelity Go

Fees

0%, $3/month, or 0.35%/year

Investment Types

Fidelity Flex mutual funds

Fidelity Fidelity Go

Investment Details

Fees

0%, $3/month, or 0.35%/year

Pros Cons

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Want a low-cost, hands-off investment account that combines automated features with management from a team of human investment professionals

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Prefer to avoid expense ratios when investing in funds

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Plan to start investing with an account balance below $10,000 (Fidelity Go charges $0 for balances below this amount)

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Want to open an individual, joint, traditional IRA, Roth IRA, or rollover IRA account

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Want to actively trade different investments or capitalize on short-term stock market trends

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Prefer ETFs over mutual fund portfolios

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Want both automated management and financial advisor advice

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Like tax-advantaged features like tax-loss harvesting

Highlights

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  • Promotion: None at this time.

Additional Reading

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Axos Bank Axos Invest Managed Portfolios

Axos Invest Managed Portfolios

Axos Bank Axos Invest Managed Portfolios

Axos Invest Managed Portfolios

Axos Bank Axos Invest Managed Portfolios

Pros Cons

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Low advisory fee (0.24%)

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Tax-loss harvesting available

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Can automate individual accounts, traditional IRAs, and Roth IRAs

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Can invest toward multiple goals and financial targets

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$500 minimum is high compared to other automated advisors like Ellevest, Fidelity Go, and Betterment

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No joint or custodial accounts

Highlights

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  • $150 bonus when you open an account and deposit at least $1,000
  • Open an Account in Under 10 Minutes.
  • No investing experience needed
  • Automatic portfolio rebalancing
  • No account minimum or annual account maintenance fee; it only takes $500 to get to your first portfolio
  • Free auto-deposit scheduling tool
  • Available tax-loss harvesting

Additional Reading

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Wealthfront Wealthfront Investing

Investment Types

ETFs, index funds, and crypto trusts

Wealthfront Wealthfront Investing

Investment Types

ETFs, index funds, and crypto trusts

Wealthfront Wealthfront Investing

Pros Cons

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Low annual fee for investment accounts; crypto trust investments available

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Tax-loss harvesting, portfolio lines of credit, 529 college savings plans available

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Cash account

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Mobile app and investing and retirement tools

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You need at least $100,000 to utilize additional investment strategies

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No human advisor access

Highlights

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  • Consider it if: You're balancing several goals and want to streamline your finances.

Additional Reading

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Vanguard Vanguard Digital Advisor

Vanguard Vanguard Digital Advisor

Vanguard Vanguard Digital Advisor

Pros Cons

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Low annual fees

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Account is compatible with individual or joint accounts, traditional IRAs, Roth IRAs, and rollover IRAs

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Portfolio in 4 Vanguard ETFs allocated according to your goals and risk tolerance

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Retirement-focused support and financial planning tools like retirement and debt payoff calculators

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$3,000 minimum may be high for some

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No tax-loss harvesting

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Platform is still expanding its account options to support other investing goals like college planning, emergency-fund saving, and homebuying

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No alternative options like socially responsible investment portfolios

Highlights

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  • Promotion: No advisory fee for first 90 days after enrollment.

Additional Reading

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The best robo-advisors of 2022

Schwab Intelligent Portfolios

Why it stands out: Charles Schwab's most basic automated investing account, Schwab Intelligent Portfolios, offers personalized, self-managing ETF portfolios. While its account minimum is higher than that of most robo-advisors, it makes up for it with its lack of advisory fees.

The account also offers automatic rebalancing, and it re-adjusts your portfolio's target allocation any time you add or withdraw money. Schwab Intelligent Portfolios gives you access to more than 51 ETFs (including Schwab ETFs), and it supports individual and joint accounts, trusts, custodial accounts, and IRAs.

You can even utilize tax-loss harvesting, but this feature is only available to those with at least $40,000 in their accounts.

What to look out for: You'll need at least $5,000 to set up an account.

Betterment 

Why it stands out: Founded in 2008, Betterment is one of the first platforms to offer robo-advice. Some of its offerings include goal-based investing, tax-loss harvesting, charitable giving options, and socially responsible portfolios.

It offers two plans: digital and premium. The robo-advisor also offers access to CFPs, but you can only take advantage of unlimited guidance if you're enrolled in its premium plan. You won't need a minimum amount to set up its digital plan, but you'll need at least $100,000 for the premium plan.

And while you can't utilize ongoing advice with its most basic account, you can still purchase consultations on the side. Betterment currently supports several investment accounts, including individual and joint accounts, trusts, traditional IRAs, Roth IRAs, SEP IRAs, inherited IRAs, and 401(k) rollovers.

What to look out for: If you don't have at least $100,000, you won't get unlimited access to a CFP; you'll have to pay for each consultation (these cost around $299).

Ally Invest Managed Portfolios 

Why it stands out: If you want to skip out on advisory fees completely, Ally Invest Managed Portfolios is a great option. Plus, it has a fairly low minimum requirement of $100, and it sets aside 30% of your portfolio as an interest-earning cash buffer to protect you against market risk.

Ally Invest's team designs the portfolios it offers, but the platform relies on technology for automatic portfolio management. Its four portfolio options — Core, Income, Tax-optimized, and Socially Responsible — are all compatible with individual and joint accounts, custodial accounts, and IRAs.

Ally's investment offerings aren't all that make it competitive, either. Its savings account pays 1.85% APY, and it lets you divide your savings in up to 10 different buckets, or goals, and track your progress. These features — along with Ally's checking accounts, CDs, mortgage offerings, auto loans, and personal loans — make the platform a great option for those looking to dabble in other areas of wealth-building.

What to look out for: Ally Invest is hard to beat in the fee category, but it doesn't offer tax-loss harvesting or access to human advisors.

Ellevest

Why it stands out: Besides its low fees and financial planner access, Ellevest is a great option for female investors, as its strategies work to close the gender money gap by factoring in things like career breaks and women's longer lifespans. While it targets women, it services are open to all investors.

It separates its offerings into two different pricing plans:

  • Ellevest Plus: This plan costs $5 per month and offers access to a personalized ETF portfolio, unlimited online workshops and courses, ongoing financial planner guidance, and IRA account management. You get 30% off of the financial planning costs with this membership level.
  • Ellevest Executive: The Executive plan offers everything the Plus plan offers in addition to multi-goal investing. With this feature, Ellevest lets you open up to five personalized investment accounts for each of your goals. As for financial planning, you get 50% off with the Executive subscription.

The robo-advisor also offers private wealth management for those with at least $1 million to invest. 

What to look out for: You won't be able to utilize automated joint accounts or custodial accounts.

SoFi Automated Investing 

Why it stands out: SoFi Automated Investing has several perks: It has a $0 account minimum, it doesn't charge any fees, and it provides complimentary CFP access.

In addition to automatic portfolio rebalancing and goal planning, the platform invests your funds into a diversified mix of both SoFi ETFs and non-SoFi ETFs. It also supports multiple accounts, including individual and joint accounts, traditional IRAs, Roth IRAs, SEP IRAs, and 401(k) rollovers. 

And like several other investment platforms mentioned in this list, you can also invest on your own, thanks to SoFi's active investing accounts.

What to look out for: SoFi doesn't offer tax-loss harvesting or socially responsible portfolios.

Marcus Invest 

Why it stands out: Marcus Invest is a Goldman Sachs-owned automated investing platform offering ETF portfolios for individual and joint accounts and IRAs. Each portfolio factors in your goals, risk tolerance, and time horizon, and Marcus Invest regularly employs asset allocation and portfolio rebalancing. 

Its simple interface also provides access to more than 50 ETF portfolios (consisting of both stock ETFs and bond ETFs), but it mainly uses three investment strategies: Goldman Sachs Core, Goldman Sachs Impact, and Goldman Sachs Smart Beta.

The core strategy focuses on index-tracking ETFs, while the Goldman Sachs Impact portfolio best serves investors in search of companies with high environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) standards. The smart beta strategy works to elicit higher long-term returns by using Goldman Sachs ETFs.

What to look out for: A drawback of Marcus Invest is that it doesn't offer one-on-one guidance from human advisors, and its Goldman Sachs Smart Beta portfolios aren't compatible with IRAs. 

Interactive Advisors 

Why it stands out: Interactive Advisors is Interactive Brokers' automated investing account. While fees and minimums can be on the higher end, one of the highlights of this account is that it offers roughly 60 portfolios, more than 50 of which only require a $100 minimum.

In addition, it provides four different ETF portfolio options: asset allocation, actively managed, smart beta, and socially responsible. The asset allocation portfolios focus your funds into a diversified portfolio, but Interactive Advisors' actively managed portfolios utilize the expertise of both its team and registered investment advisors (RIAs).

With its smart beta portfolios, you'll gain exposure to a strategy that seeks higher returns, and its socially responsible option invests in companies that positively impact the world.

What to look out for: Investment minimums and fees for actively managed portfolios are on the higher side. You may need as much as $50,000 to get started.

Fidelity Go 

Why it stands out: Most robo-advisors use investment funds (typically ETFs or mutual funds) that have expense ratios. One of the best parts about Fidelity Go is that it not only offers low fees, but it also relies on mutual funds (i.e., Fidelity Flex mutual funds) that don't contain expense ratios.

In addition, it separates its fee structure into three levels based off account balance:

  • Under $10,000: $0
  • Between $10,000 and $49,999: $3 per month
  • $50,000 and above: 0.35% per year

Fidelity Go utilizes both technology and its own team of experts when building and managing its portfolios. And as for account types, it supports individual, joint, traditional IRA, Roth IRA, or rollover IRA accounts.

What to look out for: Fidelity Go doesn't offer tax-loss harvesting, and those with over $50,000 will have to pay a 0.35% advisory fee.

Axos Invest Managed Portfolios 

Why it stands out: Axos Invest's automated portfolios let you invest toward a range of different goals (e.g., emergency fund, retirement, building wealth), and — compared to platforms like Betterment and Wealthfront — its 0.24% advisory fee is quite competitive.

It offers automatic portfolio rebalancing, tax-loss harvesting, quick deposits, and an auto-deposit scheduler that lets you determine when extra money goes into your account. As for its account types, you can automate individual and joint accounts, traditional IRAs, Roth IRAs, and SEP IRAs.

Though the account is automated, you can also choose your portfolio's ETFs and decide how much you'd like to allocate toward those investments. You'll be able to do so for more than 30 different investments.

Plus, Axos Invest could be a particularly good move for existing Axos Bank users. Users with Axos Bank Rewards Checking accounts can earn up to 1.25% interest if they also set up Axos Invest accounts and other Axos products.

What to look out for: Axos Invest doesn't offer automated joint or custodial accounts, so it isn't the best choice if you want to invest with a partner or for your dependents. 

Wealthfront 

Why it stands out: Like Betterment, Wealthfront is a pioneer in the robo-advisor space. And the platform offers something most automated accounts don't: crypto trusts.

Its other investment types include ETFs and index funds, and its portfolio options and account types are also competitive. Wealthfront offers socially responsible portfolios, tax-loss harvesting, US Direct Indexing (this strategy is like a supercharged form of tax-loss harvesting), smart beta investing, and risk parity portfolios.

In addition, you can customize your portfolio's ETF allocation if you don't like the investments Wealthfront selected.

The robo-advisor's account selection includes individual accounts, joint accounts, trusts, traditional IRAs, Roth IRAs, SEP IRAs, and 529 plans. And while it's great for those who want exposure to cryptocurrencies, it protects your portfolio against risk by only allowing an allocation of 10% for crypto trusts.

What to look out for: You won't get access to ongoing, one-on-one advisor consultations at Wealthfront, and you'll need at least $100,000 to utilize strategies like direct indexing and risk parity.

Vanguard Digital Advisor 

Why it stands out: Vanguard Digital Advisor is one of the two automated accounts (the Vanguard Personal Advisor Services account is the other option) online brokerage Vanguard provides. When it comes to account setup, it offers a similar approach to other robo-advisors: You provide details on things like your investing goals, risk tolerance, time horizon, and Vanguard builds a personalized ETF portfolio for you.

The account mainly allocates your assets across four Vanguard ETFs. These include the Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF, Vanguard Total International Stock ETF, Vanguard Total Bond Market ETF, and Vanguard Total International Bond ETF. Expense ratios for these funds range from 0.03% to 0.07%.

In addition, Vanguard Digital Advisor supports individual and joint accounts, traditional IRAs, Roth IRAs, rollover IRAs, and eligible Vanguard-administered 401(k) retirement accounts. The brokerage also has a great offering of retirement tools and resources.

What to look out for: Vanguard Digital Advisor has a $3,000 account minimum, and it doesn't offer tax-loss harvesting or socially responsible portfolios.

Find the best robo-advisor for you

  • Schwab Intelligent Portfolios

  • Betterment automated investing

  • Ally Invest Robo Portfolios

  • Ellevest

  • SoFi Automated Investing

  • Marcus Invest

  • Interactive Advisors

  • Fidelity Go

  • Axos Invest Managed Portfolios

  • Wealthfront Investing

  • Vanguard Digital Advisor

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Editor's Rating

4.73/5

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Editor's Rating

4.65/5

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BEST FOR HUMAN ADVISOR ACCESS

Editor's Rating

4.56/5

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BEST FOR INVESTING AND SAVING UNDER THE SAME ROOF

Editor's Rating

4.35/5

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BEST FOR GOAL-FOCUSED INVESTING

Editor's Rating

4.65/5

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Editor's Rating

4.5/5

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Editor's Rating

4.45/5

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Editor's Rating

4.8/5

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Editor's Rating

4.34/5

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BEST FOR PORTFOLIO CUSTOMIZATION

Editor's Rating

4.2/5

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BEST FOR COLLEGE SAVINGS PLANS AND CRYPTO

Editor's Rating

4.43/5

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BEST FOR RETIREMENT RESOURCES

Other automated investing platforms we considered

  • Acorns: Acorns is great for hands-off investors. It offers automated ETF portfolios, IRAs, and tools that invest a percentage of your money from your purchases into companies. A drawback is that you'll have to pay more ($5 per month) to access custodial accounts.
  • E*TRADE Core Portfolios: For a $500 minimum and 0.30% annual fee, you can take advantage of tax minimization strategies, socially responsible and smart beta portfolio options, and multiple account types (i.e., you can automate individual and joint accounts, custodial accounts, and IRAs). However, you won't be able to utilize a human advisor unless you've got at least $25,000, and the annual fee exceeds that of many competitors.
  • Merrill Guided Investing: This robo-advisor is unique in that it utilizes both computer algorithms and oversight from Merrill professionals. The platform also offers socially responsible portfolios, perks for Bank of America users, and multiple account types. A downside, however, is that it doesn't offer tax-loss harvesting, and it charges a 0.45% annual fee.
  • Blooom: This automated advisor has no account minimum, and it offers personalized management for a range of retirement accounts. However, the fact that it only supports retirement accounts — such as IRAs and employer-sponsored retirement accounts — could be a drawback for those who want management for other account types.
  • FutureAdvisor: FutureAdvisor offers automated ETF portfolios and employs tax-loss harvesting, but its services are limited. It only manages accounts held at TD Ameritrade or Fidelity.
  • Personal Capital: This robo-advisor offers several competitive services. These include free wealth management tools, tax optimization and socially responsible investing strategies, one-on-one advisor guidance, and copious investment types. One thing to look out for, though, is that you'll need at least $100,000 to set up an account.
  • JP Morgan Automated Investing: JP Morgan's automated portfolios rely on oversight from the company's experts and offer features like automatic portfolio rebalancing and easy account integration for Chase customers. It's not a good option for those in search of tax-loss harvesting, non-JP Morgan ETFs, or socially responsible portfolios.

How we determined the winners

We reviewed nearly two dozen robo-advisors to find the best platforms for low fees, portfolio types, human advisor access, and customer service. We also favored platforms that offered a range of other features and products, such as tax-loss harvesting and flexible account types.

Frequently asked questions

Our mission at Personal Finance Insider is to help smart people make intelligent decisions with their money. The word "best" is often subjective, so we make sure to highlight both the pros and cons of each socially responsible investment platform listed in our guide.

We spent hours comparing and contrasting the fees, features, and investment offerings of each platform so you don't have to.

Robo-advisors are automated investing accounts that use computer algorithms and/or advisor oversight to create self-managing investment portfolios. When setting up your account, these platforms ask questions about things like your investing goals, risk tolerance, time horizon, initial deposit, and monthly contribution.

These automated accounts are great for beginners, but they're also a good idea for those who prefer hands-off investing. Robo-advisors handle everything for you; you'll just need to fund the account and keep your investing goals, risk tolerance, and time horizon up to date.

It depends on the platform you use. Some robo-advisors (e.g., SoFi Automated Investing, Ally Invest Managed Portfolios, and Schwab Intelligent Portfolios) don't charge any advisor fees. But you may pay monthly fees or percentage-based fees at other robo-advisors.

Rickie Houston, CEPF

Wealth-Building Reporter

Rickie Houston is a wealth-building reporter for Business Insider, tasked with covering brokerage products, investment apps, online advisor services, cryptocurrency exchanges, and other wealth-building financial products. He is also a Certified Educator in Personal Finance (CEPF). Previously, Rickie worked as a personal finance writer at SmartAsset, focusing on retirement, investing, taxes, and banking topics. He's contributed to stories published in the Boston Globe, and his work has also been featured in Yahoo News. He graduated from Boston University, where he contributed as a staff writer and sports editor for Boston University News Service. Learn more about how Personal Finance Insider chooses, rates, and covers financial products and services »

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Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer. Read our editorial standards.

Please note: While the offers mentioned above are accurate at the time of publication, they're subject to change at any time and may have changed, or may no longer be available.

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Source: https://www.businessinsider.com/personal-finance/best-robo-advisors