Stash Invest review

By   |   Verified by Andrew Boyd   |   Updated 5th August 2021

Stash Invest review
  • Stash is a subscription-based personal finance app geared to new, long-term investors.
  • Invest in fractional shares of stocks, ETFs, and bonds commission-free with no required minimum account balance.
  • Build your portfolio through regular automated deposits, roundups on your purchases, or by using your Shop-back card.

Stash is a personal finance app for first-time investors that includes excellent instructional tools and a minimal minimum deposit requirement. Geared towards long-term investors rather than day traders, Stash offers 4 trading windows throughout the day so you can invest small amounts over a long period of time and minimize your risk.

Brandon Krieg and Ed Robinson, co-founders, resigned from their careers on Wall Street and founded Stash Invest in 2015 to make investing simple and affordable for regular people. Stash allows you to invest in what matters most to you while also providing tailored information and recommendations to assist you along the way.

How it works

Unlike a robo-advisor, Stash is a micro-investing software that tries to help you through the process of selecting ETFs and specific companies to invest in. Thousands of single stocks and ETFs are available on the site.

Stash offers a number of built-in features to assist new investors in beginning to make little contributions in their daily life. These little contributions build up over time and can earn consumers a significant amount of money. Stash collects these tiny sums through automated regular deposits, spare change roundups, and other means.

The idea is that you may begin investing without significantly disrupting your present lifestyle. If only a few pennies are taken out of your account every now and again, you probably won't notice. At least, that's how Stash micro-investing works.

Who Stash Invest is designed for

Stash promotes itself as a beginner-friendly platform. According to Stash, 86% of its 4 million members are first-time investors. It's ideal for first-time investors who need help and those who want to invest in impact equities since it's meant to make things easy.:

  • New investors. Stash takes itself in its user-friendly, beginner-friendly platform.
  • Small-quantity investors. For less than $1, fractional shares can be acquired.
  • Value-based investors. Invest in the missions and issues that interest you.

Tradable assets

When you sign up for a Stash account, you'll also obtain a Stash Investment account. You may invest in almost any type of investment, including stocks, bonds, and exchange-traded funds (ETFs).

  • Stocks. Investors may buy full or partial shares of 3,800+ stocks and over 20 ETFs via Stash. One of Stash's finest features is how it organizes stocks and makes it simple to choose stocks based on themes, categories, and other criteria.
  • ETFs. Stash provides "themed" ETFs, with names like "Blue Chips" and "Delicious Dividends" that make it clear what sorts of stocks are included in the fund. Stash also provides "Portfolio Builder" ETF portfolios that are tailored to each investor's risk tolerance.
  • Bonds. Bond diversification is an important element of a smart investing plan in Stash. Diversification is also a cornerstone of the Stash Way, its path to achieving financial wellbeing, which involves a long-term, consistent investing plan.

Tradable markets

When Stash investors talk about the stock market, they usually mean the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and the Nasdaq stock market, which trade 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Eastern time on weekdays (except stock market holidays).

As Stash is geared towards long-term investment and not day trading, it offers 4 trading windows during the trading day — 2 in the morning and 2 in the afternoon — during which trades will be executed. Stash trading windows operate in normal market hours between 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Eastern time on weekdays (except stock market holidays).

Commissions and fees

Stash presently offers 3 price choices, all of which are flat cost services.

  • Beginner: This package costs $1 per month and includes a basic brokerage account as well as access to Stash Banking. It also provides free financial counseling.
  • Growth: This $3-per-month plan includes retirement investment, a taxable brokerage account, and banking choices. Smart Portfolios are also available at this plan level.
  • Stash+: This is Stash’s most comprehensive plan, designed for families that wish to save and invest. You receive up to two custodial investment accounts for your children for $9 per month, in addition to taxable and retirement investments (note: these are not 529 plans).

Useful trading tools and features

Stash has a number of tools and services that might assist you in improving your financial situation. The app's main feature, though, is its investment features.

  • Smart Portfolio. It manages your assets using proprietary research and your personal input about risk tolerance and investing goals with practically no effort on your part - simply deposit funds and Smart Portfolio takes care of the rest. Smart Portfolio automatically rebalances your assets if they deviate more than 5% from your desired allocation.
  • Stock-Back Card. The Stock-Back® Card is a bank account that comes with a debit card provided by Green Dot Bank. When you use your Stash Stock-Back® Card at a retailer on Stash's investment platform (such as Walmart, Starbucks, Netflix, and Amazon), you can get a fractional share of that firm in exchange for a percentage of your purchase.
  • Children’s investment accounts. On behalf of a loved one under the age of 18, you can open and maintain an investment account for children when subscribed to the Stash+. This could be an excellent moment to pique a child's or grandchild's interest in investing and the power of compound interest.
  • Fractional shares. Stash allows you to invest in fractional shares, which means you can have a portfolio with less than one full share. This might be useful when dealing with high-priced stocks that cost more than $100 per share.

Pros and cons

Pros

  • Reasonable management fees. By the norms of the cheap brokerage and robo-advisor sectors, Stash's management costs are modest. Its fixed cost structure, independent of account balance, encourages new account users to invest significant funds.
  • Fractional share trading. Stash allows you to trade in fractional shares of stocks and ETFs so you can start investing in any company they offer with as little as $0.01. Fractional shares allow investors to gain exposure to a wide variety of companies without having to save up to buy a full share of a high-priced stock.
  • Subscription includes Stock-back card. With qualifying purchases, investors earn a fractional share of stock equal to 0.125% of the purchase or a fixed dollar amount of $0.01, whichever is greater.
  • No additional trading commissions. On individual stock or ETF purchases, Stash does not impose additional trading commissions. This is a significant benefit over popular “discount” brokerages, which nevertheless charge for individual stock trades in many cases.
  • Wide range of ETFs. Stash's database contains a few dozen ETFs, ranging from industry-specific products to broad-based global market index funds that are important for diversification.
  • Investment education and diversification tools. Each Stash subscription includes unlimited personalized advice and financial education tools, including a diversification score to understand how well your portfolio is structured.

Cons

  • Trades are limited to 4 trading windows. Stash executes at the market price and does not allow you to place limit orders on stocks or ETFs. Geared to long-term investing and dollar cost averaging, it encourages small, regular investment in a portfolio of assets.
  • No free trial period. Stash does not provide a free trial period for new account users.
  • Regressive fees. Since Stash plans offer fixed monthly fees rather than a proportion of assets under management. This means the smaller your account value, the fees represent a larger percentage of your assets.
  • Lacks value-added tools and services. Stash lacks the high-powered market research and analysis capabilities that full-service brokerages provide.
  • No qualified plans for business owners or self-employed investors. Stash does not provide specific retirement investment choices for company owners and self-employed investors.
  • Limited number of individual stocks. While Stash's stock database includes many well-known blue-chip stocks and growth plays, it only represents a small portion of the total number of stocks listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

Alternatives

The following are Stash's major competitors.

  • Public.com. Public.com is definitely worth a download to check out if you want to invest in the companies that matter to you the most, commission-free, and have access to a helpful community. You can invest in well-known firms without having to pay a lot of money up front.
  • Acorns. Acorns is a robo-advisor whose service is built on the age-old concept of saving money by rounding up all of your credit or debit card purchases to the closest dollar and investing the difference in an ETF portfolio. Everything is automated and done online, so you can just set it and forget it.
  • Betterment. Betterment is among the first companies to employ technology to propose a portfolio and automate the investment process in the robo-advisory industry. The company has expanded its asset classes and cash management services over the years. Betterment's interface is simple, user-friendly, and packed with instructional resources.
  • Robinhood. Popular trading platform Robinhood offers an attractive pricing structure with no commissions or inactivity fees when trading US-based stocks. Robinhood offers a user-friendly mobile and online trading platform with a simple, quick, and entirely digital account opening process.
  • M1 Finance. M1 offers a one-of-a-kind blend of automatic investment and high customization, which allows customers to build a portfolio suited to their precise needs.

Comparisons

See how Stash compares side-by-side against other popular brokers.

FAQs

Is Stash Invest safe?

Yes. SIPC insures the investments in your Stash account. This implies that Stash must adhere to federal rules that safeguard investors. Likewise, Stash’s investments are held by Apex Clearing Corporation, a third-party SEC registered broker-dealer and member of FINRA/SIPC.

Is Stash Invest FDIC insured?

Yes. The funds in your Stash banking account are insured by the FDIC because Stash banking account services are provided by Green Dot Bank, a FDIC-insured bank.

Is Stash Invest a direct access broker?

Yes. With Stash’s partnership with Green Dot Bank to add a banking capability to its app, they now provide a debit account with no overdraft or monthly maintenance fees, access to a large network of free ATMs across the country, ASAP Direct Deposit, which allows customers to receive their pay up to two days early, and Stock Back, the only rewards program that allows customers to earn stock every time they spend.

Every STASH customer also gets personalized financial advice on everything from spending to saving and investing, as well as actionable tips to help them get the most out of their money.

Is Stash Invest an IRA?

Yes. Stash Retire allows users to create a tax-advantaged IRA (traditional or Roth) to save for retirement. You may contribute to your IRA with Stash Retire either by making one-time deposits or by setting up regular installments.

What is the minimum deposit?

None. The app also does not impose any fees or commissions when you trade. That means, you will not be charged a fee whether you purchase or sell stocks or ETFs. As a result, the only fee you must consider when using the Stash investing app is the monthly account fee.

How do I deposit funds in Stash Invest?

The following is a summary of the Stash application process:

  • Enter your email address and click “Get started” on Stash's homepage.
  • Create a password and then select "Start my Stash."
  • Fill in your complete name and birthdate. Click "Continue."
  • Fill out your investment profile by answering questions about your financial objectives and investing experience. Click "Continue."
  • Enter your phone number, home address, and Social Security number to confirm your identity. Click "Continue."
  • To fund your account, enter your bank account details.

It takes less than 5 minutes to finish the application procedure. As Stash validates your account, your initial transfer of money may take 3 to 5 business days to settle.

Does Stash Invest do fractional shares?

Yes. On Stash, fractional shares are now accessible, which is fantastic if you're just beginning with a little amount of money. On its platform, consumers may buy fractional shares of most assets starting at $1, and they can acquire a portion of any stock or fund trading for more than $1,000 per share starting at $5.

Is Stash Invest good for day trading?

No. Stash is not a day trading platform.

How do I withdraw money from Stash Invest?

When you sell an investment through Stash, the funds will show in your account within 48 hours. Log in to Stash through mobile or desktop and selecting the “Transfer” option, you may then transfer it to a connected bank account. After that, you choose where you want to send the money and how much you want to send. Simply click "Continue" (in the app) or "Confirm” (on the website) and "Make Transfer" to complete the transaction. Shortly after, the cash should appear in your bank account.

Verdict

For new and inexperienced investors, Stash offers a painless way to start saving and investing by using automated daily investments, roundups of your purchases, or qualifying purchases through your integrated Shop-back card. Because Stash offers fractional share trading and is geared to long-term investing and not day trading, you can trade with as little as $0.01 and you don’t have to worry about timing the market.

With no trading fees or account minimums, Stash offers three different subscription plans so you can choose the one that’s right for your needs. Financial education, automated allocation, and diversification tools can help you structure your portfolio. and maximize your investment.

Although its monthly subscription fees range from $1 to $9, for small accounts the fee structure is relatively high, making it prohibitively expensive for modest accounts.