Wealthsimple is a whole new kind of investing service. This is the latest installment of our “How To” series, where we lay out smart and easy-to-understand advice on navigating the financial world.
You’re a kind person. You’re a giver! Motivated only by generosity. (With a side of: It’s OK to get a little rich.) And so you’re naturally wondering: What’s the nicest thing I could do for a friend? Or a family member? Give her one of your kidneys, of course. Done. But what if your friend doesn’t need a kidney? It’d be awkward if you gave her one anyway. In that case, do the second nicest thing you can do: Encourage her to open an account with Wealthsimple. Why is that so nice? Well, you’ll be helping this friend/family member/co-worker plan for the future, save on fees, and invest like Warren Buffett.
Oh, and you’ll also be giving her the gift of £5,000 of investments managed free for one year. Because that’s what we give new clients who come in through friends. Sure, you, the giver, will also get £5,000 of investments managed free for one year when your friend signs up. But you don’t care about that, or about the fact that you get an additional £5,000 managed free for each additional person you refer, because remember? You’re motivated only by generosity. (Technically, we think it’s possible to be motivated by generosity while also enjoying thousands of pounds of free expert investment management.)
But what we do is new. So you may have to explain it to people. That’s why we prepared this handy list of talking points for you. You probably shouldn’t, like, print it out and read it to your friends. However, if you wanted to memorise it and pretend you’re just coming up with this stuff off the top of your head…? Well, that’s up to you.
Your Line: “Wealthsimple knows the science: People can’t pick stocks.”
Here’s your backup: Wealthsimple’s portfolios are built exclusively from passive funds. The beauty of passive funds are that they have lower fees and they perform better. Look it up: Study after study demonstrates that over the long term, passive investments far outperform funds with human managers.
Your Line: “It’ll take you about five minutes to sign up. And it’s kind of an enjoyable process.”
Back it up: It might take you four minutes. It might take you seven. Depends how fast a typer you are.
Your Line: “If you already invest, you probably have no idea what kind of fees you’re paying. That’s because they don’t WANT you to know.”
Back it up: It’s standard for people to be paying on average 2.56% in investment management fees in the UK. It also seems standard to never tell you what your fees are. Wealthsimple is completely transparent: We charge 0.7% (unless you invest more than £100,000; then it’s 0.5%—more on that below) to create and maintain a perfect portfolio. And that’s not including that £5,000 managed free.
And there are also no rebalancing fees, no account transfer fees, no trading fees. Big players like to hit you with fees every time you make adjustments to your portfolio. But Wealthsimple’s proprietary software automatically optimises your investments and adjusts your asset mix so you’re never over- or underexposed in any sector — and the trades are on the house.
Your Line: “That 0.7% in fees makes a surprisingly huge difference.”
Back it up: Why does it make such a big difference? Because of something called compound interest. Over the course of decades, half of a percent could easily save a person enough to buy her future freewheeling self several new convertibles (or her future sensible self a down payment on a house). Or enough to retire a year early.
Your Line: “It doesn’t matter whether you think you have enough money to start investing. There’s no account minimum.”
Back it up: OK, that’s a slight overstatement. You will need a pound to open an account. So you may need to perform a quick sweep under the sofa pillows to yield enough to get started. But no matter how small the investment, we’ll design an optimised, diversified portfolio with it.
Your Line: “You can invest exclusively in companies that aren’t evil. And still make a beautiful return.”
Back it up: You have the option to invest in something called our SRI portfolio — it stands for socially responsible investing. Without your having to do all the research yourself, we'll put your investments in only companies that align with building a better world and avoid doing harm, whether that harm comes in the form of greenhouse gases or unfair labour practises.
Your Line: “Yes, it’s a new company with an extremely cool app. But it’s as safe and stable as any other financial company.”
Back it up: Investing is stressful enough without wondering if some mini-Madoff is using your retirement savings to fuel up his St. Bart’s yacht. We may seem friendly, but we’re deadly serious about safeguarding your money. First: We’re a young business, but we’re backed by The Power Financial Group, one of the world’s largest and most storied financial holding companies. Second: We’ve got an army of nerdy encryption specialists who have war-gamed every online security scenario. And third: As with any legitimate investment firm, your investments are insured by the government for up to £50k in assets, £85k in cash.
Your Line: “You don’t have to talk to a single human. Not when you open your account. Not when you want to change something. But there are always humans around if you need them.”
Back it up: It’s best of both worlds. Technology, only for humans.
Your Line: “The app is cooler and more intuitive than Google Maps.”
Back it up: We make online investing as easy as ordering a sandwich. Only more beautiful. (We just won our second Webby for Best Financial Services Website; can your sandwich-ordering app claim as much?) And not only is our website easy on the eyes; it’s also designed to make everything simpler and easier to understand. We make it easy to see how well your investments are performing, for instance, without being assaulted by a lot of details you don’t need. It's why Apple featured us in the App Store for people who want to “invest like a pro.”
Your Line: “The more you invest, the better it gets.”
Back it up: Anyone who invests £100,000 or more becomes a Wealthsimple Black client. Congratulations! This means you’ll pay even lower fees (0.5% to be specific) and get in-depth investment planning sessions. And champagne! Wealthsimple Black comes with a Priority Pass membership—free access for you and a travel companion to all the glories that reside behind the frosted glass of 1,000 airport VIP lounges worldwide.
Now. If your mum, your flatmate, your boyfriend still isn’t convinced, tell them to send us an email at email@example.com. We’ll close the deal. And we’ll still give you the £5,000 managed free.
Wealthsimple makes smart investing simple and affordable.
All investing should be considered long-term. While stock markets have typically trended upwards over the long term, your investments can go up and down, and you may get back less than you invest.