For investors who want to avoid traditional advisory brokerage firms, one alternative is to use an online service. These web sites either evaluate or advise someone about their investment portfolio. Many of these companies offer a certain amount of online advice for free, and then charge for additional services. Some firms include access to a financial advisor by pone or email. Listed below are six online investing services.
Fee: 0.25% a year plus ETF fees but no trading commissions; no charge on first $10,000 in assets.
Description: Automated management and rebalancing of all-ETF portfolios, for both taxable and tax-qualified accounts. Accounts of $100,00+ also include tax-loss harvesting. The focus is online services, but advisors are available by phone if needed.
Fee: Account aggregation and suggested asset allocation is free. For specific buy/sell advice, plus ongoing advice on rebalancing and taxes: free for accounts up to $25,000; then monthly fees ranging from $18 ($25K to $150K) to $70 a month ($600K+). No minimum account size required.
Description: Consolidated view of accounts. Guidance to help reach retirement goals, including suggested asset allocation, specific buy and sell recommendations based on current account choices, rebalance alerts, and projected annual retirement income.
Fee: 0.35% annual fee for accounts up to $10,000; 0.25% for $10,000 to $100,000; 0.15% for accounts worth $100,000+. No trading commissions but there are ETF fees.
Description: Automated management and rebalancing of all-ETF portfolios. Accounts of $500,000+ can get personalized advice by phone.
 Personal Capital
Fee: 0.95% annual fee for accounts up to $250,000; 0.90% on the next $250,000; 0.85% on the next $500,000. Minimum account size is $100,000. No trading commissions but there are ETF fees.
Description: Consolidated view of bank, retirement, and investment accounts, plus guidance on cash flow, net worth, asset allocation, investment fees and rebalancing. If accounts are linked to the site, free access to a financial advisor. Includes personalized management of stock and ETF holdings, including tax harvesting and rebalancing.
Fee: $19 a month for accounts ($9 if account is < $50,000) plus fund fees and any trading commissions. Service includes tax-loss harvesting.
Description: Consolidated view of retirement and non-retirement accounts, with guidance on allocation, diversification, rebalancing, taxes and fees, and specific buy/sell recommendations. Services include automated management and rebalancing of ETF and index mutual funds, including tax-loss harvesting.
Fee: Free service and no account minimum.
Description: Consolidated view of retirement and non-retirement accounts, including fees and risk profiles. Specific buy/sell recommendations based on funds’ fees and 3-year returns relative to risk.