How to Know if You Should Invest in Index Funds on Robinhood

Greatest For

  • Free buying and selling
  • Choices buying and selling
  • Prospects preferring buying and selling from a cell gadget

With an app providing free trades on shares, choices and even cryptocurrency, Robinhood has grown briskly over the previous few years. It’s not simply these options that enchantment to newer and fewer well-heeled buyers, and Robinhood provides an easy-to-use cell interface, fractional shares (for purchases and dividend reinvestment), and low-cost margin loans as a part of its Robinhood Gold program. Potential prospects ought to steadiness these professionals in opposition to restricted free analysis, restricted account varieties and a complete lack of mutual funds. The worth proposition is far much less clear when different on-line brokers have moved to a no-commission mannequin and but supply higher options.

Nonetheless, Robinhood is a stable possibility for these trying to execute a commerce on the lowest attainable price.

In case you’re on the lookout for a comparable app, take a look at Webull, which provides comparable and typically higher options. Fidelity Investments and Charles Schwab are stable customer-friendly brokers that provide a ton of options in addition to robust analysis and schooling. 


Make ETFs A part of Your Portfolio

An ETF is a straightforward strategy to diversify your investments, and its transparency provides additional safety. Investing in an ETF by Robinhood is straightforward, helps enhance your internet price and provides liquidity to your belongings. Please return to Benzinga for extra data on investing, private finance and rather more.

Concerning the Writer

Cynthia Paez Bowman is a private finance author with levels from American College in worldwide enterprise and journalism. Apart from writing about private finance, she writes about actual property, inside design and structure. Her work has been featured in MSN, Brex, Freshome, MyMove, Emirates’ Open Skies journal and extra.


Providers that characteristic roboadvisors are designed for buyers targeted on the long term quite than buying and selling on a day-to-day foundation. Buyers are supplied a choice of ETF portfolios which can be monitored and adjusted mechanically over time. They’re one other low-fee different.

Wealthfront and Betterment are pioneers within the roboadvisor trade and each cost an annual advisory charge of 0.25% and nil buying and selling or account switch charges.

Betterment fees administration charges that vary from 0.25% to 0.40%, in contrast with 1% to 1.5% for a median monetary advisor. Each apps stroll customers by the method of establishing a portfolio of ETFs based mostly on their solutions to a collection of questions concerning danger tolerance and investing preferences.

Wealthfront and Betterment supply various ETFs, from easy ones that observe broad U.S. inventory indices such because the S&P 500 to specialised devices like rising market and actual property funding belief (REIT) funds. Each platforms additionally permit for a straightforward setup of tax-sheltered retirement accounts, reminiscent of IRAs.

Robinhood Charges

You’ll be able to learn extra about Robinhood’s pricing on its fee schedule

Buying and selling and fee charges Shares, ETFs, crypto, and choices: $0 (there could also be charges tacked on to shares on international exchanges by ADRs)
Account minimal for brokerage and buying and selling providers $0 
Annual charge $0 
Account upkeep charge for brokerage and buying and selling providers $0 
Inactivity, information charges $0
Wire transfers$0 
Account closing charge / ACATs (automated buyer account switch service),outgoing No closing charge, however $75 to switch funds out of your account
Gold pricing (in-depth analysis reviews, Stage II information, entry to margin) For 30 days (plus $1,000 of margin): $5Margin for $1,000+: 2.5%

The place Robinhood Falls Brief

There are some factors on which Robinhood may use some enchancment.

Transparency and Reliability

In gentle of the lawsuits and accusations from account holders over the past couple of years, Robinhood has some work to do concerning its insurance policies. It’s nonetheless unclear whether or not halting trading of certain stocks, leaving buyers caught with shares or lacking out on alternatives, was a one-off scenario or may occur once more.

As well as, fees from the SEC that Robinhood doubtlessly makes cash by executing your commerce orders at a less-than-favorable fee present that the younger brokerage might should be extra upfront about its practices. The corporate paid $65 million to settle with out admitting or denying fault, Forbes reported, and famous that it had “considerably improved” its execution practices.

No Mutual Funds

Robinhood doesn’t supply mutual funds, the spine of a diversified portfolio. You can commerce ETFs, that are considerably comparable.

Margin Buying and selling

Though margin buying and selling is obtainable, you have to to pay a $5 subscription charge to entry it, on prime of the curiosity fees on the cash you borrow.

Does Robinhood Carry Index Funds?

Robinhood carries a variety of index funds that commerce as ETFs. Customers should buy or promote shares of those funds at any level throughout common buying and selling hours. Amongst different funds, Robinhood customers can select from index funds supplied by Vanguard, SPDR and iShares. You’ll discover each home and worldwide index funds accessible on Robinhood.In case you’re bullish on future Chinese language progress, for example, you should purchase the iShares China Giant-Cap ETF (FXI). Exploring the number of index fund ETFs accessible on Robinhood will take a while, however you’ll even be launched to a variety of funding alternatives.

Execs: The place Robinhood stands out

Free buying and selling

Shares, ETFs, choices, and cryptocurrency. Verify, test, test, and test! You’ll be able to commerce all of them without spending a dime on Robinhood, and that’s an enormous boon to buyers, particularly choices buyers. Whereas buyers can discover free inventory and ETF trades at most brokerages today, the actual differentiator for Robinhood is its free choices buying and selling. 

As choices merchants know, it’s straightforward to rack up an enormous invoice for those who’re buying and selling out and in of the market. That’s as a result of brokers cost a charge for every contract. That construction shortly piles on the prices. However at Robinhood? Zilch. It’s an amazing selection for choices buyers trying to get into the market.

In fact, past all these freebies, Robinhood means that you can trade some cryptocurrencies commission-free, too. As of our final rely, you will get entry to a few of the greatest, together with Bitcoin and Ethereum, in addition to the favored Dogecoin. And also you’ll give you the option to take action 24 hours a day, seven days per week. You should purchase cryptocurrencies immediately and never through futures. Nevertheless, you gained’t be capable to take custody of your cash, as you possibly can at some crypto exchanges. 

Account minimal and fast funding

With no account minimal, Robinhood provides to its investor-friendly cred, nevertheless it’s funding course of is even higher. In case you’ve ever tried to fund a brokerage account earlier than, you realize it may possibly take some time to get the funds into the account, even for those who transfer the money in proper as you’re opening the account. That’s why Robinhood’s funding stands out.

Robinhood will get some cash into your account instantly. By utilizing instantaneous verification with main banks, Robinhood means that you can keep away from the trouble of conventional verification of reporting tiny deposits into your checking account. This implies the app can transfer as much as $1,000 of any deposit into the account instantly, with the remainder following just a few days later. It will get you within the sport quicker.

Robinhood Gold

Robinhood Gold is the corporate’s program to offer analysis and let you purchase securities with borrowed cash, or margin. Robinhood fees $5 a month for this system, which provides analysis on about 1,700 corporations from Morningstar, Nasdaq Stage II quotes and entry to margin loans.

The subscription worth contains the curiosity in your first $1,000 in borrowing, and subsequent quantities are charged at an annual fee of two.5 % – very low-cost. The dealer fees mortgage curiosity to your account each 30 days. In case you don’t have money within the account to pay the month-to-month charge, it’s rolled into your margin steadiness. Potential debtors ought to observe that any margin account should have a minimum of $2,000 in it, per trade guidelines.

With Gold, you’ll have entry to the next stage of instantaneous transfers, as much as the worth of your portfolio, beginning at $5,000 as much as a most of $50,000. So you possibly can shortly transfer funds into your account, past even the essential $1,000 accessible to everybody. 

Fractional shares

Robinhood is nice for fractional shares, whether or not you wish to purchase or reinvest your dividends. You’ll be capable to place a commerce with as little as $1, and you should purchase as little as one millionth of a share. Robinhood additionally extends this program to shares that will not be featured in partial-share applications at different brokers. Most shares buying and selling above $1 per share and with a capitalization of $25 million are included in this system. Robinhood’s program helps you get all of your cash into the market quite than having to save lots of up sufficient to purchase that high-priced tech inventory.

Robinhood buyers are smarter than you assume

Robinhood buyers get a nasty rap, however these ETF holdings are fairly astute. The mix of stalwart S&P 500 index funds and a few extra aggressive performs on particular themes is in keeping with a stable asset allocation technique. In case you assume that power and valuable metals will do properly, then including an power ETF and a silver ETF sparsely to a core of S&P index funds and a well-diversified lively ETF is a wonderfully affordable strategy to proceed.

Robinhood In comparison with Others

RobinhoodTD AmeritradeVanguard
Sorts of investing accounts Self-directed brokerage and buying and selling Self-directed brokerage and buying and selling, IRAs and different retirement accounts, managed accounts Self-directed brokerage and buying and selling, IRAs and different retirement accounts, school and schooling financial savings plans  
Charges $0 buying and selling fee charges; different charges might apply$0 buying and selling fee charges on on-line trades for shares, ETF, and possibility trades; different charges range  $0 buying and selling fee charges on on-line trades for shares, ETFs, and Vanguard mutual funds; different charges range  
Account charges No annual charge No annual charge $20 annual charge, mutual-only account charges: $20 if beneath $10,000 
Index funds Over 2,000 ETFs Over 2,300 ETFsGreater than 100 Vanguard index funds 
Cell app Robinhood is primarily an investing app Investing app accessible Investing app accessible 
Customer support Buyer assist accessible 24/7 through cellphone (request on the app)Account assist accessible 24/7 through cellphone Reps accessible through cellphone 8 a.m. to eight p.m. EST. weekdays 

How do ETFs Work?

ETFs make their cash by adjusting their make-up, promoting shares and hoping to extend the fund’s worth. ETFs commerce all through the day, they usually offer you a excessive stage of liquidity. Anybody should purchase shares within the ETF, growing or lowering their stake within the fund. Cash not paid in dividends to shareholders goes again to the fund supervisor.

Because the ETF adjusts its holdings, it should publish these holdings for public assessment. You understand exactly what you’re investing in at any time, and you’ll assessment the ETF’s exercise. Even because the ETF hopes to earn cash, it’s accountable to the general public, making your funding safer. 

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