The powerful wealth management tools below are among the most practical achievements of the digital age.
Technology has changed all of our lives -- and our finances -- in meaningful and irreversible ways. For better or worse, most of us rely on it every day through any number of online transactions. We trust sophisticated algorithms to protect us when we pay our bills and order our groceries online. But what about when we are looking to invest that money? This is one area in which the tech industry can really shine. For any investor at any level, wealth management tools might be a practical option. They provide simple solutions to make sure your money is working for you, without you having to work too hard.
What wealth management tools can offer:
I completely understand why some investors might be reticent to trust their portfolios to a software program. That's why we've put together a list of some of our favorite wealth management tools and their most prominent features. Don't worry! We are not trying to sell anything, and some of these options are even free to try! But they do offer exactly that: options. In this new age of technological advancement, don't get stuck in a 20th century state of mind when it comes to your investments.
You'll find that many of these tools are unique and offer innovative concepts that set them apart from the rest. Generally speaking, though, each of them have one or more of three characteristics that make them worthy of their inclusion. A good program should either:
- Make you money
- Save you money
- Give you a better investment strategy
A Range of Options
If you have the time, maybe poring over spreadsheets is the best option for you. For busy investors who need a reliable way to automatically track their stocks and bonds, though, there are wealth management tools. After researching the subject on my own, I found several that met my personal investment needs. The options I've included below include an array of features and several different cost structures. If you're running out of minutes in the day to manage your portfolio, please read on. A small investment of your time now could really pay dividends down the road.
I'll start with a couple of basic examples of wealth management tools. These will be more attuned to the needs of a novice investor or one with a hands-off approach. As the list progresses, I'll include some options for the experienced investor looking for some high-tech assistance.
The 6 Best Wealth Management Tools for Busy Investors
Without further ado, find your next wealth management tool below. No matter which you choose, you'll feel confident knowing that you've taken the first step to securing your financial future.
If you're not quite sure what to ask from your wealth management tool but want to get your feet wet, consider Mint. This is a pretty simple tool, but that isn't to say it's not powerful. Mint allows investors to maintain oversight of their savings, spending, budgets and other important wealth factors. A few of the specs you can count on from this software are a free credit score, bill payment and alerts. Mint also stands out among wealth management tools by making it easy to determine what portion of your portfolio is being diverted to cover fees.
Perhaps the best part is that this tool is free to try. You might decide it's not as sophisticated as what you'll need to prepare for your financial future. In that case, you can still keep this tool around for the features you like. Keep reading to find some more robust programs you might want to add to your arsenal of wealth management tools.
2. Personal Capital
Personal Capital tops the list of wealth management tools for many of today's savvy investors. This is a free program that doesn't act like one. With this application, you'll have access to an array of innovative and easy to use functions. Cash flow is just one of the many stats to which Personal Capital will give you automatic access. You can also use this tool to calculate your net worth, keep up to date with your asset allocation and plan for retirement.
One particularly useful feature is the investment checkup. You can use this to take a holistic approach to your investments. Could you be sacrificing big returns because you're playing it too safe? The checkup function will help you make that call. There's much more this tool has to offer, but since this is just an overview I'll leave it there. If you're new to the world of wealth management tools, though, this is a great place to start.
3. Quicken Premier
It's in applications like Quicken that wealth management tools really start to show what they can do. If you're looking for some deep analytics into your investments and their return, this might be the software for you. There are a couple of ways to access the tool, either through a fee or subscription model. Both provide access to Quicken's powerful resources, so pick whichever is right for your lifestyle.
When it comes to what this tool has to offer, it might be easier to list what it doesn't let you do. You'll have access to tons of informative reports and analysis to help you make wise decisions. And with Premier 2018, you can control as much of the process as you would like. Through enhanced customization features, you can receive investment management reports set to your specifications. There is also plenty of information the tool will prepare far beyond the typical income and expense reports.
Morningstar will give you a bit more direct advice than some of the other leading wealth management tools. The site will provide deep analysis of investment options. Expect to hear both the possible upside and potential pitfalls of each considered trade or purchase. You'll also get insight into key metrics, including whether you have too much of your capital invested in a single sector. Another great benefit of Morningstar is the valuable research into various types of mutual and exchange-traded funds. The tool also provides similar insight into stocks.
A free example of the software is available to get an idea of what users are getting in the premium iteration. The paid version, though, is likely to pay off in the form of increased returns on your investments.
5. Fidelity Investments
There's a reason Fidelity is such a major player in the investment game. And this powerful software similarly stands out among wealth management tools. There really isn't too much you could ask from a service like this that Fidelity doesn't provide. Like any worthwhile tool, it will offer vital information and analysis of your portfolio. Beyond that, however, Fidelity has a few tricks in store to set it apart from the crowd.
One helpful feature is a credit card, complete with its own cash-back rewards that can be used for deposits. The Fidelity tool also contains many of the useful components found in other leading software. Among them is a nifty "Full View" feature allowing users to connect with third-party service providers. With Fidelity, you'll always have a clear overview of your investments.
If you're already securely invested but would like a little automated assistance, check out SigFig's free tracker. This tool likely won't disrupt anything you've currently got going on with your portfolio. The service is offered in partnership with Fidelity, Schwab, and TD Ameritrade. So, if you're already invested with these firms, you won't need to transfer anything to use the SigFig features.
And there's plenty of ingenuity in this simple program to include it in this list of wealth management tools. The software can be custom fitted to your needs and situation. Whether you want to minimize risk or reduce fees, SigFig's got you covered.
Not all wealth management tools are created equally.
The list above includes several of the wealth management tools with features beneficial to the typical busy investor. When harnessed correctly, technology is a tremendous boon to productivity. We can achieve much more with the proper digital assistance than we can on our own. And if your day-to-day trades don't need a lot of face-to-face interaction, wealth management tools might be just right for you. But to get the most of this kind of software, it's best to know if it provides what you're looking for.
Sure, many of these wealth management tools offer similar base characteristics. But beyond the core functionality of these programs, each company is targeting a slightly different audience. That certainly goes for tools not in this list, which run the gamut from those aimed at complete novices to others focused on deep analysis.
And the winner is....
The six wealth management tools in this list have features tailored to the needs of busy professionals. With those parameters in mind, you really can't go wrong with any of the tools listed. But there has to be a winner -- and it's a close one. I'm going with Fidelity for a couple of reasons. One, Fidelity has a proven track record backing its tool and a lot of great resources to put into it. Two, it's just a darn good tool. Even if there's something another tool has that the Fidelity software doesn't provide, chances are you won't miss it in the long run. But even if you do, the great thing about most of these tools is that you can pick and choose to create your perfect stable of digital advisers.
If you're time is better spent making or spending your money than worrying about everywhere it's invested, give a robo-adviser a try. These tools are ubiquitous for a reason. The good ones work and they're worth much more than they cost -- especially the free ones!
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