Ask LH: How Can I Get Started In Investing?

Ask LH: How Can I Get Started In Investing?
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Dear Lifehacker, I want to get started in investing and was wondering what are some options to invest small amounts of money. Preferably, I don’t want to risk anything above the sum of $1000. Any tips? Thanks, Christian

Dear Christian,

If you just want to play around in the investment space without risking anything substantial, a good place to start is the free Acorns app which is available for iPhone and Android devices. Whenever you make an online purchase, the Acorns app rounds up your digital transaction to the nearest dollar and invests this “spare change” into a diversified portfolio of exchange traded funds (ETFs).

Users pay an annual flat fee of $15 for accounts holding less than $5000, but otherwise there aren’t any start-up costs to discourage you from investing. Just be advised that the potential rewards are equally modest, especially if you’re only investing loose change. (There are options to top up your account with regular deposits.) One of my colleagues has been using the app as a savings account and has made a profit of around 7.5% which isn’t too shabby.

Naturally, you should also do plenty of research about investing before dropping any cash. With that in mind, we’ve assembled a few of our guides and primers below. Good luck!


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    • Yeah, I would like to know which acorns portfolio is returning 7.5% too.

      I have been using it since the day it launched in Australia using the aggressive portfolio and my returns as of today are 3.58%

      Still better than a savings account and I have yet to notice any impact from the few dollars here and there it takes from my account.

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