Robinhood App Review – Are The Free Trades Good For You?

robinhood app review

I don’t know about you, but I don’t like to give my money away in fees, no matter what it may be for. Being a twenty-three year old with a part time job, the money coming in wouldn’t impress anyone, especially my monthly bills. After becoming interested in the stock market in college, I tried to find a way to invest without giving up an arm and a leg in fees for the small investments that I wanted to make. Unfortunately, I never found Robinhood in college and had to go a whole year and a half reading up on the markets without ever putting a dollar to work. In the summer of 2017, I was introduced to Robinhood by the promise of a free share of stock that Robinhood still offers if you use a friend’s invite link. After downloading the app, receiving my free share of Ford and seeing the stock jump almost a $.50 in two days, I was officially an investor.

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Perks of the Robinhood Trading App

Robinhood offers a few perks other than the free share of stock when you join, including zero trading fees and is committed to keeping it that way forever. The reason it is said to be the millennials investing platform is the lack of fees because who would want to buy one share of Boeing at $330 a share, only to have to have the stock reach $340 to begin to make a profit after the initial $4.95 trading fee and the same trading fee when you sell it. For someone buying a thousand dollars or more at a time, that fee doesn’t make a difference, but for someone contributing $200 a month to invest, that fee is stifling.

Ease of Use

The platform is user friendly and easy to understand, unlike some of the more paid sites. When you log into your app, you see your homepage that shows a chart at the top of the screen with your performance. You can change the timeframe of the chart to fit the current day or previous week, month, three months, one year or five years. It gives you the performance in terms of dollar amount or percentage whenever you change from one timeframe to another. When you scroll down from there, you have a small box that shows alerts from stocks or ETFs that you either own or follow, including price change, alarming alerts, and quarterly earnings report alerts, allowing you to go straight to the meeting through the app so you can listen in live.

Scrolling down from the alert box are the boxes showing what you own and how many shares. One great feature is the ability to change how you see your ownership by being able to see it is total equity owned, individual stock price, or percentage change for the day. The entity is always shown in either green or red depending on whether you are up for the day (green) or down for the day (red). Under this category is the “Watchlist,” which is an overview of any entity that you wish to keep up with.

Researching Abilities

What I love so much about this app is that even though it doesn’t give insight information into whether or not you should buy or sell, it gives you some technicals of the entity including the open price, it’s high and low price for the day, the fifty-two week high and low, volume for the day, average volume, market cap, P/E ratio and dividend yield if it has one. One other great feature is that along withall of that information, it will list articles from mainstream websites that include the entity in it, so you can read up select articles without having to search for them.

Below the technical information, you can see the earnings report from the previous four quarters and the current quarter with a graph that shows both the expected earnings and the actual earnings, so you can see how the quarterlies have been acting over the previous year. Another great feature is the link to the previous earnings call that is available for a couple of weeks after the call actually happens so you can keep up with the company. Lastly on the page of the stocks, you can see all of your trades in a play-by-play list of how many shares you bought or sold at what particular price. That way you can always go back and see what you did in a very specific manner. Along with this information, the bottom of the page gives you a description of the stock or entity that you are buying into, so that you can know what exactly the stock or fund does or includes.

Robinhood Gold

This may be a free app, but there are ways to experience a better experience by paying a premium per month. Robinhood Gold is the step up from the original Robinhood that offers a whole lot more than the average user experiences. For $10, you can get $2000 extra buying power, $14 for $2500 and $15 for $3000. They also give you a free month before you begin paying the monthly fee and you can cancel at any time, even before you pay for the extra buying power. A bigger perk to this Gold membership is the extended trading hours. Now you can get access to trading thirty minutes before the market opens and two hours after the market opens, totaling an extra two and a half hours of trading time per day.

Cons of Robinhood

With the many pros that were listed above, the cons still are staggering. The app doesn’t give you any help into what stocks or entities you should buy or stay away from, which can really hurt you. Along with that, the app is lagged just a bit so that the price listed is actually the price listed a few seconds before. This is a challenge when trying to make bids on a very volatile stock that is moving quickly. For someone with a lot of buying power and who does a lot of quick trading, this may not be the platform for you. The cost per trade from the other firms is paying for the insight from their professionals and the timeliness of their ticker for trades.

Happy Trading!

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