What is Ally Invest?
Ally Invest is a low-cost broker that allows you to trade stocks, options, and ETFs. You don’t have to pay any commissions for trading stocks, options, or ETFs. It also offers a managed portfolio for those people who don’t have a lot of time on their hands or don’t want to manage their own portfolio.
They have a long history, which I don’t want to mention here. In the year 2017, Ally Invest was launched by Ally Financial, Inc. Ally Financial, Inc. is a digital financial services company, and Ally Bank is the banking subsidiary of this company. It is always nice to know that a broker is backed up by a reputed company with a long history.
- Excellent Pricing: They have recently dropped the commissions for trading stocks, options, and ETFs to zero. You only need to spend $0.50 per options contract, which is pretty low. The fees associated with other securities are also low.
- Helpful Tools and Research: The fact that they don’t charge any commissions doesn’t stop them from providing you the usual tools and research provided by other brokers. I am sure that you will be pleasantly surprised by what they have to offer, especially if you prefer options trading.
- Extra Features: You can bank with them and do so much more than investing.
- No Account Minimum: They don’t require you to deposit a hefty amount as you can get started with a $0 account balance.
- Interface: Their interface can be improved and made to look better. New users can face difficulties in navigating the website.
- Absence of Physical Branches: This is not a con for everyone, but I know that some people prefer to visit the physical branch of a broker if they need some help.
What does Ally Invest offer?
Here are some of the worth mentioning features of this brokerage.
Various Investment Choices: You are not limited to just stocks, options, or ETFs. You can also invest in bonds, mutual funds, and forex. They allow margin trading, which is always a plus for experienced traders.
Trading Tools and Research: They don’t have trading tools just for the sake of having them as they offer a lot of useful tools. For options traders, they have an options pricing calculator, profit/loss calculator, options chains, and strategy scanner. You can access six charts with several chart studies and drawing tools to analyze the performance of securities the way that you prefer.
They have a probability calculator for determining the likelihood of hitting your targets using implied volatility. It is normal for watchlists to be included by the online brokers so that you can use the watchlists here as well. Watchlists will help you in keeping track of the securities that you are interested in.
Knowledge of the market is a big part of trading decisions so that you can get news, market statistics, and data related to individual companies. In short, you will find plenty of tools and helpful research here. However, some people may not be pleased with the interface as everything is sort of cluttered.
Managed Portfolio: You can choose from 4 different portfolio types based on your goals and let them do the rest. If you don’t like the options that they offer, then you also have the option of customizing and getting the right balance of risk and return. They will manage your portfolio and rebalance it when the need arises.
They set aside 30% of your portfolio as an interest-earning cash buffer. This cash buffer will earn interest at a rate of 1.80%. They use it to balance the risk and setting off the losses when the market conditions aren’t favorable.
Education: They will provide you proper education and help you learn about a wide range of topics. Their education section covers personal finance topics. Normally, you don’t find much about personal finance in the education section of brokerages, but they have gone above and beyond here.
Mobile App: Their mobile app has a lot of features, including banking and investing features. I know that it is very common for online brokerages to have investing apps, but you can do so much more with the Ally app.
How much does Ally Invest cost?
You have to pay $0.50 per options contract and an additional $0.35 per contract on certain options index products because of the exchanges charging a fee. You have to pay fees for low-priced securities, which are $4.95 plus $0.01 per share on the entire order of stocks that are priced less than $2. You have to pay a commission of $9.95 for no-load mutual funds only.
You need to pay $1 per bond per transaction, with the minimum being $10 and the maximum being $250. You will be charged $24.95 per transaction when it comes to Certificates of Deposits.
You can find more about any additional fees on their website.
What do people think about Ally Invest?
Their app has a rating of 4.3 stars on Google Play. This is a good rating, and some of the best financial apps have similar ratings. People are pleased with what the website offers, and the recent changes in fees are much appreciated. The website offers more functionality than the app, so some people only prefer using the website. Overall, this broker has managed to impress most people that have used it.
Ally Invest is a serious contender among the low-priced brokers. Their recent change in the pricing to allow for free stocks, options and ETFs trading will attract a lot more people. Beginners should give this broker a try.
Frequent traders would be able to save some money by trading on this platform. Their support is good as they are available on the phone 24/7 and also provide online chat support.