This year has been a crazy ride for the stock market. But, as new investors flood into the financial markets, many contemplate which online broker they should use. With so many good options to choose from, it can be a tough decision to make, especially for those just getting started with investing.
In this article, we will be taking a look at SoFi Invest and Stash to compare the services, fees, pros, and cons of each platform.
We hope this gives you more clarity on which broker may be a good fit for you!
Check out this video for more!
Stash is an online investing and banking platform that serves users who are new to investing. Stash comes at a monthly fee but offers unique features such as a stock-back card, early direct deposit, custodial accounts for minors, and fractional shares.
Sofi Invest has many great features that allow users to save for goals whether near or far into the future. SoFi has a great platform that will appease any new investor as the features provided like fractional shares, automated investing, automatic rebalancing, and portfolio recommendations will help any new investor get off to a great start.
|Commission on stocks||No||No|
|Monthly Subscription||$1 - $9||None|
|Assets available||Stocks and ETFs||Stocks, ETFs, Crypto|
|Account Types||Brokerage, Retirement, Custodial||Brokerage and Retirement|
SoFi Invest is one of the most popular features offered on the Sofi platform. While it offers many financial services, we will be focusing on the investment arm of the business.
Ranging from crypto and automated investing to retirement saving, SoFi Invest covers a broad range of products that you can tap into when using the investment service. To top it all off, SoFi has a mobile app to make the process of buying and selling securities even easier.
SoFi invest has even announced the ability to purchase company stock at the IPO price - something that was previously reserved for institutional investors.
SoFi doesn't charge any commissions on stock and ETF trades made on its platform. This means that you will never pay SoFi anything for trading stocks on its platform. However, keep in mind that the U.S. government will always get its cut of trading activity.
The lack of commissions has been a huge advantage to the millions of traders who were tired of being charged with every trade they made. Today, most apps are free of broker-introduced commissions.
Cryptocurrency is an exception, however.
Trading crypto comes at a cost on the SoFi Invest platform. There is a 1.25% markup on all crypto trades. That is a high spread relative to other brokers. If you are interested in trading crypto through SoFi, make sure you keep this markup in mind.
From Bitcoin to Ethereum to Litecoin, SoFi invest has you covered with 24/7 trading on its platform. There are multiple coins on the platform and more are being added regularly.
Unlike with stocks, there is an account minimum of $10 required to invest in crypto on the SoFi platform.
Also, bear in mind that you cannot send or transfer cryptocurrency in or out of the account.
Are you interested in investing in companies that have share prices out of your comfort zone or price range? SoFi has a solution for that!
It's called fractional shares. This feature lets you invest with as little as $1 in countless popular companies.
With this feature, SoFi lets you buy fractional slices of stock depending on how much you want to invest. This is a great option if you are a beginner investor with limited resources but still want broad diversification across many securities.
You can buy a bunch of stock slices and start to track your favorite companies, no matter how high the stock prices are!
SoFi Invest offers both actively-managed and automated Roth or Traditional IRA accounts.
To access these, simply open up a SoFi account, set your goals, diversify your portfolio, and watch your money grow. SoFi also has financial planners and live reps just a phone call away. Talking to a live expert can be a great way to get info about which retirement account may suit you best.
If you are indecisive about what will work best for you, SoFi can make recommendations about what option will best suit your situation.
If you don't want to pick and choose your investments, you can take advantage of the Automated Investing functionality. Automated Investing lets you identify certain goals in your life like saving for a home, a vacation, or wedding, and helps you create an investment path to get there. It's a great program for anyone who has goals that are a little further in the future.
SoFi Invest will recommend a diversification based on your timeline and will allow you to rebalance your holdings quarterly.
While SoFi does most of the work for you, the broker still values your specific goals and makes sure that the plan set for you reflects your investment goals.
Learn more about SoFi Automated Investing
If you are interested in automated investing, there is no account minimum. You can get started right away and start socking money away for the future.
When it comes to active investing, the account minimum is the same - zero.
Cryptocurrency is a different story. The account balance for this feature is $10.
Stash is an investment platform for beginners that focuses on two critical components if you are looking for financial freedom. These two components are saving and investing.
This company provides affordable investment options, online banking accounts, automated saving services, and much more on its platform.
However, a key difference between Stash and SoFi Invest is that SoFi Invest is 100% free for stock and ETF trading as well as automated investing. Stash, on the other hand, charges a monthly fee of $1 to $9 depending on the account level.
Like SoFi Invest, Stash does not charge a commission on the stocks and ETFs that it offers. While this is true, let's not forget about the monthly fee. Since Stash charges its users a monthly fee, the company is making its money monthly as opposed to each time a transaction occurs.
Just like with SoFi Invest, Stash allows its users to opt out of buying full stocks or ETFs, and instead, you can choose to buy portions for a fraction of the price. You will still experience the same market fluctuations of the stock going up or down, but you choose the amount that you feel comfortable investing with.
This can allow users of all levels of wealth to be better diversified in the stock market because they can afford to purchase in more industries.
While Stash focuses on investing, the company is also interested in helping users spend their money wisely. Stash also acts as an online bank where users can get their paycheck up to two days early and receive cash back in the form of stock for certain purchases.
This feature is available with the stock-back card. Simply use your stock-back card to pay for purchases and Stash with round up the purchase and add stock to your portfolio. If you make a purchase with a retailer or service provider that you invest in, you will be rewarded in stock to your account.
This is one of the many reasons that users are loving Stash!
Stash also has a free education portal that is full of informational articles about the stock market, money, and timely market news that you should be aware of as an investor.
From articles on how the stock market works to more complex information on retirement planning, the information is very easy to understand and should help you make better investment decisions.
In addition to a personal brokerage account, Stash also offers retirement accounts that you can access with the Stash Growth account.
Retirement accounts are crucial to your ability to grow wealth and will ultimately play a large factor in how the latter years of your life will turn out.
While Stash keeps its costs low for many of its features, it still operates on a subscription, fee-based structure which involves monthly payments.
Monthly fees will range from $1 per month to $9 per month depending on the Stash subscription you choose.
For the Stash Beginner account, you will gain access to a personal investment account, bank account, two-day early pay, and free financial education.
Not bad for only $1/month! In addition, some life insurance is available for all Stash Beginner members.
Stash Growth accounts have all of the features of a Stash Beginner, plus tax benefits for retirement accounts and access to a smart portfolio for automated investing. If you are interested in the Roth and Traditional IRA accounts, this is the lowest-priced account that Stash offers.
Stash Growth users pay a $3/month fee.
The final and highest priced account is Stash+ which comes in at $9/month. With Stash+ you will have all of the Stash Growth features plus investing accounts for two children, a metal card with 2x stock-back, and monthly market research reports.
If you have older children interested in investing, the Stash card for extra rewards or monthly market reports, Stash+ may be a great option for you!
If you are a fee-conscious investor, you will likely lean toward SoFi as the company does not charge any commissions or management fees.
Both SoFi and Stash allow you to follow a passive or active investment style. Ultimately, it comes down to whether or not you can justify paying a monthly subscription for Stash.
If you are looking for crypto trading, that is only available through SoFi Invest.
On the other hand, Stash offers custodial accounts which you will not find with SoFi.
Thank you for reading and good luck as you search for the online broker that works best for you!