We are all familiar with the daily grind. Going to work, then coming home to empty the kilo of shrapnel left in your pocket. Straight into the jar and never to be seen again. But what if those coins could be the key to making you a ton of money. Acorns, a recently released micro investing app, seems to think so.
What is Acorns?
Acorns is an app that will help you invest your spare change into the stock market. The app takes money rounded up from your coffee purchases, and buys stock in the exchange-traded fund of your choice. If you purchase your latte for $4.20, the app will round up to $5.00 and will invest the 80c into the Acorn’s portfolio of your choice.
You will be able to choose from five stock market options. The least risky being a “conservative” portfolio, with the most risky being an “aggressive” portfolio. The app also allows you to think about how much you are willing to invest, and how much you are expecting to gain in returns. The app is being promoted as a good introductory option for first time investors looking to get acquainted with the stock market.
How do I use the app?
To use the app, all you do is enter your banking information. You then choose whether to invest using the round up method, a one-off payment or recurring payments. When you link your credit or debit card, Acorns tracks your transactions, and then automatically invests round-ups after each purchase.
Will it actually help me make money?
One week in, and with little marketing, thousands of Australians have already been using the application and it has been ranked the seventh most downloaded finance app on the App Store. But how much could a spare 50 or so cents a day make you? Well, there is no way to tell. That’s the nature of investment. But say you were a user with a conservative profile, your spare change will be targeting a return of 4.6 percent. Let’s work that out: If you invest $30 a month this would equate to a return of $1.38. It’s a good way to spend your spare change, but if you are looking to become the next Gina Rinehart, Acorns might not be the way to get there.
In addition, you will be required to pay a monthly fee of $1.25 to use Acorns. This is a significant portion of what is a micro investment of your spare change. After all, $1.25 a month on $30 is a 4% fee for using their service.
Fee, or no fee, the app has been receiving its share of traction, and there is no doubt that the app has found a innovative way to invest your loose change.