Our Robinhood review covers the past 6 months of personal investing experience using the app. It is an investing application that is free to download on both iPhone and Android devices, best known for their commission and fee free trading.
Robinhood is a good platform for someone that …
- wants to invest with a small balance (something that trading fees can quickly made unusable)
- doesn’t need an advanced trading platform
- is comfortable and prefers to trade through their phone or tablet
- doesn’t want to lose money on commissions and fees
- potentially wants to trade on margin
- potentially wants to trade relatively frequently
A quick look at our scoring …
|Overall||★★★★||No hidden fees, easy to use|
|Trading Costs||★★★★★||Free is actually free in this case. No commissions or fees charged.|
|Account Minimums||★★★★★||No minimum for non-margin. Margin requires $2,000 minimum due to regulations|
|Platform Usability||★★★★||on an iPhone the platform is very easy to use. Sleek UX, obvious buttons, etc|
|Platform Device Compatibility||★★||They are really lacking a desktop application. Mobile compatibility is solid though|
|Research Tools||★★||Minimal research tools. The news and tooling they do have does not always have the most updated info|
|Securities For Trading||★★★||ETF’s and stocks|
|Customer Support||★★★||Phone & email.|
Phone M-F, 9a – 6p EST
|Margin Capabilities||★★★★★||Offered through Robinhood Gold|
|Brokerage Transfers||★||Not offered in or out currently|
|Personal Finance Tool Integrations||★||No current integration with Mint.com or PersonalCapital.com|
My Personal Experience
At the time of initially writing this (July 4,2017), I am up 9.72% year to date and have been actively using Robinhood for around 6 months with an initial deposit of $200. My initial goal was to play around and make sure I had a sound first hand experience with their platform.
I do want to note that while my return is currently over the 7% that many people shoot for, it’s not specifically due to Robinhood. However, it has allowed me to trade profitable opportunities that may not have been on other platforms due to paying fees and commissions. This is where the real win has been for me with their platform. I cannot speak to Robinhood gold as I haven’t used it to date.
UPDATE: Referring A Friend & Free Stock Shares
Over the holidays we gifted investment advice and a funding gift to a few relatives on Robinhood. Naturally I had them sign up through our referral links to take advantage of the free shares that Robinhood provides.
The process was painless, I was notified that I had invites that had signed up, and then deposited funds. Once Robinhood notifies you of this, they present essentially 3 hidden cards to choose from in order to redeem your free share. You do not know ahead of time what the 3 options are, other than left, center, and right position. The two shares I ended up with so far are Zynga ($3.96) and Sprint ($5.65).
Update: One Year Of Investing With Robinhood: (January 2017) to current (January 2018)
I first invest $200 USD with the Robinhood app January 13, 2017. I started out by purchasing a few shares in IRM to establish a dividend baseline. From there I used the remainder to frequently trade biotechs (sometimes only holding for a few hours). For the last half of the year I have mainly played the holding game with BOTZ, MSFT, IRM. I have cheap shares with dividend cash in IDN, ALT, AUPH. My 2 free shares for referring mentioned above with S and ZNGA.
- Cash invested: $200
- Freebie Stocks (from referral): $9.61
- Portfolio Value: $273.54
- Gain / Loss: $63.93 (+30.5%)