They're used for almost everything these days. They order groceries, track workouts and pretty much answer all questions.
More importantly, mobile devices now help manage money. A large number of tech-savvy market-watchers have turned to low-cost digital investing products for help planting the seeds of their financial future. Today, many financial institutions and brokers offer a mobile app to make the process smooth, educational and sometimes fun.
The benefits of having a tool like this in your pocket are numerous, including quick, immediate, on-the-go access to information about your investments, and the control to make changes to your portfolio on your own.
Ready to jump in? Understanding how to get started with mobile investing — from defining your goals to placing your first trade — will increase your chances of success.
Ahead of downloading an app and placing trades, you should get into the habit of making informed money decisions. Start by giving yourself a head-to-toe financial exam. Consider your monthly income, regular expenses and potential financial goals for the near future. Does your income cover your expenses? Are you on track to reach your goals? Your answers to these questions will help shape your budget and, in turn, answer the question of how much money you have that can be put toward a portfolio.
You can't plan for everything, though; holding some money as cash in an emergency fund can help cover any unexpected expenses without having to affect your investments.
A quick search for “investing” in your mobile phone's app store reveals more than a dozen options to choose from. With so many available investing apps — many of which offer a similar suite of services — it can be easy to get lost in the sea of sameness. Here are some pointers about what to look out for as you get started.
Do-it-yourself investing, represented by low-cost mobile apps, doesn't exclude you from talking to an advisor, too. An advisor can develop a strategy and portfolio for your specific needs. What's more, an advisor is typically well versed in investing minutiae like rebalancing, risk management and asset allocation.
Meanwhile, your mobile app is there to help manage the buying and selling, tracking and other more tactical tasks. In fact, the two work well together.
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