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Whether you’re looking to make a trade or stay updated with stock quotes and real-time information, there are a slew of good apps to choose from.
Successful stock market trading depends on two things: timing and information. In today’s fast-paced digital world you can manage the stock market at your fingertips, wherever you are, thanks to the wealth of stock market apps available. Not all stock market apps are the same, though, so here is our best advice on what to look for in a stock market app.
When you boil down all the differences between the various stock market apps available today, there are two main types: either you’re looking at a trading app, or a tracking app. Let’s begin with trading apps.
Trading apps are all those many stock market apps which permit you to buy and sell stocks directly from the app. They often include search and tracking functions, but those tend to be dwarfed by the focus on trading capabilities. One good example is Robinhood. Robinhood integrates with your current account to unify and simplify the entire stock trading process. Although it does have some stock tracking capabilities, it’s really all about trade. You can search for a particular stock or browse through stocks until you find one that you like. When you’re ready to buy, just hit the green BUY button, enter the number of shares you want, and press the green check mark. Swiping up completes the trade (so you can’t make a purchase by mistake).
Some stock market trading apps function primarily as robo-advisors. These apps let you choose how much you want to invest and give you some level of choice about your investment options, but they use advanced algorithms and big data analysis to balance and diversify your portfolio instead of leaving it up to you. Some investors are extremely wary about giving a robot system control over their investments, but others are attracted by the idea of handing the burden of decision-making off onto a machine. The Betterment mobile stock market app attracts users thanks to its test performance that outperformed the market 88% of the time. The Betterment robo-advisor assists users to build a diversified portfolio by asking you to choose from a pre-determined selection of stock market investment options. There are three levels of plans which gradually give users more say in the investment choices as they become more familiar with the process.
Acorns works in a similar way, but it extends even more support by making your investment automatic. It’s ideal for total beginner investors. Acorns connects with your current account and tracks all of your purchases. It rounds up every purchase you made and invests the spare change on your behalf into an ETF. You aren’t given the choice about where your money is invested – all that is done by AI.
The other main type of stock market app deals with stock tracking. Stock tracking apps send you real time stock quotes and updates, keep you up-to-date about financial news, and can be set to send alerts about changes to particular stocks. StockTwits is a highly popular stock tracking app that is called the Twitter of the stock market. You can use StockTwits to build your own watch list of shares, bonds, and companies and access real time information updates. StockTwits shows trending stocks and is constantly updated. It’s great combined with a trading app like Robinhood.
Yahoo! Finance is a fully featured stock tracking app that has been the favorite of many stock market followers and traders for many years. Yahoo! Finance enables users to create watch lists and request personalized updates. The Yahoo! Finance app links with your brokerage accounts so that all your stocks, bonds, and investment information is automatically transferred and monitored across financial news sources. Yahoo! Finance also offers links to tools and analyses that help users make good investment decisions and offers a side-by-side comparison option to make it easier to decide between investment options.
OpenFolio is another good choice for a stock market tracking app because it allows you to combine many financial accounts in one place so that you can see your overall financial situation, including all your investments. Styling itself as your ‘digital financial assistant,’ OpenFolio presents projections, updates, tips and tracking for bank accounts, brokerage accounts and online accounts through other apps such as Betterment and Robinhood. OpenFolio compares your investment performance with that of over 70,000 other portfolios so that you can know when to be more aggressive.
TD Ameritrade is unusual in that it offers multiple apps which complement each other to give you full trading and tracking capabilities within one stock market app suite. TD Ameritrade Mobile Trader is focused on trade, enabling you to buy across the whole gamut of stocks and shares options. You can pick from thousands of mutual funds as well as ETFs, stocks and bonds, and Forex. It includes research tools and permits users to chat between themselves to share tips and warnings while the stock market calendar keeps users informed about upcoming events. To balance this, TD Ameritrade Mobile places the emphasis on stock tracking and analysis. You can use the app to analyze stock market trends and follow your portfolio. Advanced investors can exercise more granular control of their portfolio through the Thinkorswim and TradeArchitect platforms.
If you primarily want to keep up with financial and stock market news, then you’ll want a stock market tracking app that also includes plenty of news updates. One of the best is Bloomberg. Bloomberg is constantly at the forefront of all finance news updates and information with very strong stock tracking capabilities. With Bloomberg you can create your own list of stocks, shares, and bonds to follow across news sources. There are powerful tools to keep track of investments and price checking alerts, but you can’t link your brokerage accounts. Instead, all your investments have to be entered manually.
Design is key to every successful mobile app and that’s just as important when it comes to stock market apps. There is a lot of important information to present and good design makes all the difference. A clean, intuitive interface enables users to find the information that they most need quickly and easily. SigFig is a stock market tracking app that stands out for its clear design. You can use it to track investments or let it control your portfolio as a robo-advisor. You can customize reporting dashboards and carry out a live sync with your investment accounts to keep the information current. As a tracking app, SigFig integrates with over 100 brokerages but keeps all the data easy to find and stops it from overwhelming you. Viewing is simple with SigFig and you can shift to see performance, allocation, risk, and more by tapping investment charts.
E*Trade is also notable for its useful design. E*Trade focuses on trading stocks and shares, securities, ETFs, mutual funds, and other investment vehicles through an easy to use, intuitive interface. The customizable dashboard lets users organize information according to what they most want to know. Real time stock quotes, financial news headlines, educational tools, and comparison tools are all well-organized so that they can be easily accessed.
How much you have to pay to use a stock market app is another important part of choosing a good one for your needs. Different stock market apps tend to operate under different types of pricing plans. Some stock market apps are completely free. Mostly, these are the tracking apps, including Bloomberg, StockTwits and Yahoo! Finance. Stock trading apps usually charge some type of fee, although Acorns is worth noting because it is free, instead making its money on the margins of your investments. Some stock trading apps charge a flat fee per transaction. This includes TD Ameritrade and E*Trade, which both charge $6.95 per transaction. Robinhood, however, does not charge fees for transactions or to open an account but it does pass on FINRA fees. Finally, there are the stock market trading apps which charge a percentage of your investment, such as Betterment which charges between 0.15% and 0.35% depending on your investment amount.
Improve Your Investments Today
Whether you’re a beginner investor looking for a robo-advisor to shoulder the burden of managing your portfolio or an expert stock market trader who wants to supervise his/her stock market performance, you’ll find a mobile app to help you out. From tracking to trading, mobile stock market apps are there to make your investments easier to handle.