M1 Finance is Free

Discuss all general (i.e. non-personal) investing questions and issues, investing news, and theory.
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michael11
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Joined: Tue Nov 14, 2017 1:05 pm

M1 Finance is Free

Post by michael11 » Wed Dec 13, 2017 11:53 am

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles ... es-to-zero

The article says they are an adviser but they let you create your own portfolio with ETFs and stocks.

I currently use M1 to automate my vanguard portfolio both taxable and IRA (30% VOO, 30% VEA, 10% VB, 10% VWO, 10% VCIT, 10% BND). I deposit $100 on Fridays into both.

I still use Robinhood for my trading. Has anybody used M1 Finance for a long time or have an opinion on their system? What other automated investing platforms do you use?

William55
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Re: M1 Finance is Free

Post by William55 » Wed Dec 13, 2017 3:19 pm

I am using Wealthfront, Etrade and M1. M1 certainly gives me the most control as to how I build my portfolio. I like that I can choose my own stocks and ETFs. M1 is great because it give me the IRA, and Individual account offering with the ability to purchase fractional shares. I consider myself to still have a long(er) investment time horizon and M1 lets me more efficiently dollar cost average into my portfolio. Now that it is free it will certainly become my go to choice.

overthought
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Re: M1 Finance is Free

Post by overthought » Thu Dec 14, 2017 4:22 pm

Interesting... does it give a way to coordinate a portfolio over multiple accounts? Or do you have to choose a separate portfolio for each account?

Edit: Also might be worth pointing out that you can transfer cash out to your bank for free, but they charge $100 per in-kind ACAT transfer to other brokerages (see fee schedule here).
Last edited by overthought on Thu Dec 14, 2017 5:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Meg77
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Re: M1 Finance is Free

Post by Meg77 » Thu Dec 14, 2017 4:25 pm

“Vanguard will soon offer the first S&P ETF that instead of charging typical asset-under-management fees, will pay customers a nominal amount to subscribe,” Tyler Sosin, Principle at Menlo Ventures, said in an interview.
Huh??
"An investment in knowledge pays the best interest." - Benjamin Franklin

JohnnyM
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Re: M1 Finance is Free

Post by JohnnyM » Fri Feb 09, 2018 7:56 am

(I posted this on other BHead threads too; moderator delete my post if this is out of line, I am unsure if folks are subscribed to all M1 & Motif threads & I want to see the discussion).
https://paulmerriman.com/?powerpress_pinw=17404-podcast
Above is a 1 hour podcast re Motif vs. M1
Some of us have individual stocks as their "play" fund (I don't any more, I'm all index funds as soon as my final 3 positions sell) - geez M1 is the way to do individual stocks!- Edit: No not really, see my post below.

M1 is NOT for the "safe cash portion" of your portfolio so keep that at a different broker.
M1 trades are free vs. Motif.
M1 is fine for dollar cost averaging , Motif not really (trade fees).
Motif is increasing their trade fee from $10 to $20 this month (unless you trade at the market open 9amEST, then is $10).
M1 trades at 9amCST = 10amEST.

Re the concern of the bid-spread, is at about 34:15 of the audio podcast.
Re how do they make money & is the business model sound long term, it is around 43:00 of the podcast.
Last edited by JohnnyM on Thu Feb 15, 2018 7:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

JohnnyM
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Re: M1 Finance is Free

Post by JohnnyM » Thu Feb 15, 2018 6:56 pm

I was definitely wrong above about "M1 being the place for individual stocks". Definitely not, one of the ideas behind individual stocks is that you typically have 10-baggers outperform the losers and all the other average individual stocks, constantly re-balancing would never let those 10-baggers shine and you would continually be buying losers. Motif is more appropriate for individual stocks so that you can let your 10-baggers run and dump your losers.

M1 looks fantastic for a collection of index funds for people who like something a little more than the simple 3 or four portfolio (slice and dice or whatever you like to call it). Or maybe M1 is sound for a 3 or 4 fund simple portfolio, I don't see why not? The rebalancing on a 3fund portfolio is not too hard, much more than that and it gets time-consuming and emotional.

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Driver
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Re: M1 Finance is Free

Post by Driver » Mon Feb 19, 2018 9:36 pm

I just tried opening an account, but ran in to an issue. Since I have a credit freeze on my accounts they want me to email them a copy of my Drivers License and utility. There is no way I'm doing that since it is not secure. I'm dismayed they even asked me to do this. I emailed support and they said I could either email or fax them the information, but that's not secure either. I've asked them if I could just upload the data to their website or use their app. or provide them with an unlock code for my credit report. I'll post what they reply with once they get back to me. II do have some reservations regarding their security if they want me to email personal info.

JohnnyM
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Re: M1 Finance is Free

Post by JohnnyM » Tue Feb 20, 2018 10:52 am

I just tried opening an account, but ran in to an issue. Since I have a credit freeze on my accounts they want me to email them a copy of my Drivers License and utility.
They asked the same of me, as did my prior 2 brokerages & recent banks, I'd rather maintain my credit freeze/alert & jump through these hoops than not, way too much id theft going on, (Equifax or whoever had how many breaches; I must assume I am one to be safe).

There is no way I'm doing that since it is not secure.
good for you, be safe.

I'm dismayed they even asked me to do this.
I wasn’t, I know about my credit freeze & it seems banks require way more info than they used too since the war on terrorism, I have to assume it is regulations on all "financial intitutions"

I emailed support and they said I could either email or fax them the information, but that's not secure either.
Why is fax not secure & why is it secure for banks & medical offices, I thought it was among the most secure?
I've asked them if I could just upload the data to their website or use their app.

or provide them with an unlock code for my credit report. (I definitely would not do that but perhaps you know way more than I do).

I'll post what they reply with once they get back to me. II do have some reservations regarding their security if they want me to email personal info.
Yea we all want to know about a company's security measures so looking forward to your findings.

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Driver
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Re: M1 Finance is Free

Post by Driver » Tue Feb 20, 2018 1:15 pm

Hi JohnnyM,

No response as of yet. I did forget to mention that they did allow for a third option which is to mail the info. The reason I don't like faxing personal info. and it isn't the most secure in my opinion. It is usually not encrypted and it's common for many different people to use one fax machine. When my data is received someone else might pick it up accidentally. Also, there is no guarantee that if my data is physically printed out on paper that it is kept secure and disposed of properly. However, there is a chance that the faxes that M1 receives are in a digital format. I might be over reacting a bit, but I deal with Computer Security for a living so that portion of my life tends to flow over into other areas. I believe all of the Credit Bureaus provide a one time unlock code that is good for one use that you can provide to others to run a credit check.

How do you like their platform thus far?

Thanks

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Phineas J. Whoopee
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Re: M1 Finance is Free

Post by Phineas J. Whoopee » Tue Feb 20, 2018 1:31 pm

M1 Finance is not free. They cover their costs and make their profits via methods that do not appear as line items on your statements. Some candidates are: soft dollar arrangements; interest on cash not yet invested (with enough you can earn interest even for only a few hours); order routing fees; securities lending; and spreads. All of them cost you, but are not reported to you. Many brokers, including for-commission ones, do these things.

PJW

JohnnyM
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Re: M1 Finance is Free

Post by JohnnyM » Tue Feb 20, 2018 5:43 pm

Phineas J. Whoopee wrote:
Tue Feb 20, 2018 1:31 pm
M1 Finance is not free. They cover their costs and make their profits via methods that do not appear as line items on your statements. Some candidates are: soft dollar arrangements; interest on cash not yet invested (with enough you can earn interest even for only a few hours); order routing fees; securities lending; and spreads. All of them cost you, but are not reported to you. Many brokers, including for-commission ones, do these things.

PJW
Thanks PJ. I'm going to go learn about these terms.
Do you think all brokers do these?
Do some or all of these happen at Vanguard too?

interest on cash not yet invested (with enough you can earn interest even for only a few hours)- This one is one that stands out to me. Is this not true at all places, including Vanguard, most places are up front about what you earn on any cash in an account. What am I missing?

JohnnyM
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Re: M1 Finance is Free

Post by JohnnyM » Tue Feb 20, 2018 5:46 pm

Driver wrote:
Tue Feb 20, 2018 1:15 pm
Hi JohnnyM,

I believe all of the Credit Bureaus provide a one time unlock code that is good for one use that you can provide to others to run a credit check.
I don’t think they want to do a credit check, they probably have some minimum standard or even a regulation they must comply with to verify your id? Just ask them

How do you like their platform thus far?
Seems easy enough, I called with a question I had & got my answer. If you make a pie or more than 1 pie, or want to delete a pi you made, when you are all done, log out & log back in to be sure things look as you intended, if not call them to see how to create what you are after. I was simply putting in a Paul Merriman portfolio but couldn’t see how to delete my "pretend pie" I created while I was learning without real money.

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Driver
Posts: 213
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Re: M1 Finance is Free

Post by Driver » Tue Feb 20, 2018 8:44 pm

Thanks for the tip regarding the pies. The email I received said it was because I had a security freeze, moved recently or don't have a long enough credit history. I haven't moved and my credit history is pretty long. They got back to me this afternoon. They said I could remove the credit freeze and re-submit my app. Their mobile app doesn't support the feature to upload data just yet.

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