Betterment, such as its US rivals M1 Finance and Wealthfront, has managed not to pass unnoticed in the eyes of European investors. Unfortunately, Betterment is also not available in the UK or any other European country. Its only countries of operation are the United States, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands.
This means that if you are a resident of Belgium, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Poland, Romania, Spain, Sweden, or any other European country, you won’t invest through the Betterment app.
Still, keep your head up! We have explored some solid alternatives that will be worth looking at! Keep on reading. We’ve got you covered!
In a nutshell, what is Betterment?
Betterment is a US-based fintech company that provides Robo-advising and cash management services. However, Betterment’s attention has been its automated goal-based investing system, which manages a portfolio of passive index-tracking equity and fixed income exchange-traded funds. The company’s strategy is to build global diversification with a Nobel Prize-Winning approach to asset allocation, that is, Modern Portfolio Theory created by economist Harry Markowitz, while at the same time offering low management fees based upon your own personal risk profile.
What Betterment alternatives can I find in the UK and the EU?
By the nature of Betterment’s multiple business segments, you will not find an identical peer in Europe. Their product offering is quite wide (due to its cash management services), but we believe you came this far looking for solutions in the investment side of Betterment, and that’s exactly what you will find in the next few bullet points.
Betterment Europe Alternatives
Another great Robo-advisor to manage your investments through a stress-free wealth management service. The pricing varies according to your investment amount. It goes from 0.35% to 0.75% in case you invest £100.000 or 10.000£, respectively. Works in the UK and Italy (clients of other countries may be accepted upon request).
A Robo-Advisor with multiple portfolio options and customization. The service is fully automated and even offers tax-loss harvesting (tax efficiency). It charges a maximum management fee of 0.41%/year. Access to a human advisor is available for amounts above €100,000.
It provides a free AutoInvest & Pies feature where you can construct different pies and pre-define your target weight for each asset you include in the Pies (only stocks and ETFs). You may rebalance your positions in a single tap, schedule automatic deposits and use fractional shares to invest in stocks with high single shares prices (think of Amazon, for instance). New users also get one free share of up to €100 by using the code IITW. Read our Trading 212 AutoInvest & Pies review here.
Disclaimer: 76% of retail CFD accounts lose money when trading with this provider.
You can also check the full list of Robo-advisors available in the UK and other European countries. It is important to note that most of the Robo-advisors mentioned above provide you with human, financial advisors. The customer support is there for you but only for technical issues. It does not give you actual advice on how to manage your savings. We believe that’s quite acceptable given the nature of a Robo-advisor in the first place, which is to automate your investments as much as possible and let you enjoy your time in other personal activities.
Betterment Europe Alternatives
Is my money safe in all those fintech?
Yes, it should be! All the investment fintech present in this article are regulated and/or registered by top-tier regulators like the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in the UK. Under this shield, all clients are protected by up to £85,000 on their financial assets by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). Therefore, in the unfortunate event of bankruptcy, your money will be safeguarded.
Despite their recent activity, we have seen that they were capable of withstanding the massive spike in volatility that occurred, especially in March and April of 2020 due to Covid-19. We hadn’t seen that market instability since 2007-08, during the global financial crisis, so it gives us good comfort to know that none of those apps suddenly crashed as it happened with Robinhood (more info here), a US-based peer of Betterment.
Now it’s your call
At the end of the day, everything will depend on your specific case (profile, preferences, objectives,…) and the importance you give to every single factor involved.
In general, it is crucial always to be aware of the fee charged, make sure that they are regulated by top-tier institutions such as the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), and understand each step of the investment process, mainly the products themselves.
Explore the websites and decide for yourself!
A reminder that the above should not be construed as investment advice and should be considered information only. Investors should do their own research and diligence about the services and opportunities best suited for their risk, returns, and impact strategy.
Did we not mention something you were looking for? Leave your feedback in the comments section below!