Tag: Fees

Posted on September 24, 2019

Vanguard is piloting and is expected to soon release a new digital planning and automated-investing product called Vanguard Digital Advisor, according to a document filed with the SEC. Vanguard Digital Advisor will have a $3,000 minimum and an all-in fee of 0.20%, placing it in direct competition with providers targeting less affluent investors. In doing so, Vanguard will undercut incumbents Fidelity and JP Morgan, who both have all-in costs—management and underlying fund fees— of 0.35% and independents Wealthfront and Betterment, who have all-in costs of around 0.33% and 0.36%, respectively depending on the portfolio chosen. 

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Posted on September 21, 2019

When digital investing was first introduced, platforms quickly began accumulating assets. Digital advisors were labeled industry disruptors, as talks of fee compression, the commoditization of professional asset management, and disruption of the investment advice industry ran rampant.  Digital advice providers had the advantage of emerging during a historic multi-year bull market. Over the last four years, the market has continued to mature, adoption has spread across major financial institutions, and new consumer trends have emerged. An increasing number of companies are battling for market share and institutions have developed their own offerings.  In the race to achieve scale, the largest independent advisors continue to expand product offerings to stay a step ahead of incumbent players and maintain impressive rates of asset accumulation.  

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Posted on September 10, 2019

Winner: Fidelity Go

Runner-Up: Vanguard

Fidelity Go, followed by Vanguard, are the Best Robos from an Incumbent Financial Institution. While our analysis indicates that independent robo advice providers offer the most robust online platforms, Fidelity and Vanguard leverage their institutional might to offer a high-quality service based on proprietary funds for those who would rather entrust their money to larger, more established institutions.

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Posted on September 6, 2019

In recent years, socially responsible investing (SRI) – also commonly categorized as environmental, social, and governance investing (ESG) – has gained popularity with retail investors and investment managers alike.  Between 2016 and 2018, assets invested in ESG-themed mutual funds grew 34%, while assets in ESG-themed ETF funds more than doubled. Driven by consumer demand, a natural expansion has been undertaken by digital advisors to offer separate SRI portfolio options.  Within the past few years we have opened and funded SRI accounts at each of the providers that offer sustainable investing options. With a year of performance to review, we have assessed the risk and return statistics of SRI portfolios offered compared to their standard offerings.  While today’s focus is on performance, we will publish a full report on the composition of SRI portfolios, including costs and sustainability scores, later this month.

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