MarketRiders

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Expert Review

Barbara FriedbergPersonal Finance Contributing Editor

Barbara Friedberg, MBA, MS is a former investment portfolio manager with decades of financial experience. Friedberg taught Finance and Investments at several universities. Her work has been featured in U.S. News & World Report, Investopedia, Yahoo!Finance and many more publications.    More about Barbara→

MarketRiders is an investment service aimed at helping Americans manage their retirement portfolios more effectively. They advise consumers who prefer to execute their own trades and be involved in the investment process. MarketRiders monitor investors portfolios and makes investment recommendations in line with best-practices investment theory.

  • Free trial: Users may try the service for free for a limited time period.
  • Fees: MarketRiders’ unique subscription model charges $14.95 per month or $149.95 per year for their portfolio monitoring and advice. The portfolios the company recommends are similar to most automated advisors, low fee exchange traded funds. Commissions may be levied by the consumer’s investment brokerage company.
  • Minimum investment amount: Investors in the MarketRiders platform need a minimum of $25,000 of investable assets.
  • Investment portfolios: The MarketRiders plan recommends the ETFs to buy as well as the number of shares. The firm also recommends how and when to rebalance.
  • Consumers manage trades: MarketRiders does not place the account trades and consumers implement the MarketRiders advice themselves.
  • Small target audience: This service is geared toward a small facet of the population with the discipline to implement the investment recommendations themselves.
  • Best for Investors seeking best-practices investment guidance that they can implement on their own.

Question and Answers - MarketRiders

What problem is MarketRiders trying to solve?

According to Morningstar, 97% of professional money managers underperform their index after fees and taxes. On top of that, money managers cost the average investor 30% of their portfolio over 15 years. At MarketRiders, we’re trying to solve this problem by offering a do-it-yourself investing platform that enables customers to take control of their investments and build their own diversified portfolio.

What sets your company apart from the competition?

All of our competitors (direct or indirect) are still managed services. As a true do-it-yourself service, MarketRiders empowers everyday investors to protect and grow their wealth by taking control of their investing. Here are some of the reasons customers choose our service:

Very low fees: we charge a flat fee per month or year and fees are not based on portfolio size.

Rebalancing: we’re watching our customers’ money 24/7 so they don’t have to, and we notify them of market shifts that require rebalancing.

Time savings: our customers only need to spend about 3 hours a year managing their portfolio.

Transparency: we offer unbiased advice because we are independent and don’t make commissions. We are beholden to no one but our customers.

Control: unlike with other robo-advice services, our subscribers make their own trades and to not relinquish control of their accounts.

What needs do your products and services fulfill, and how do you fulfill those needs better than your competition?

Investors know they need to invest for retirement, but the best approach is not always clear. And in many cases, they probably do not want to hand over their nest egg to someone and hope for the best. We cater to those investors who want to retain control of their money and their portfolio. A company like TurboTax fulfills the need for consumers to handle their own taxes. Similarly, MarketRiders caters to the do-it-yourself investor who wants to handle his or her own portfolio.

How does your company measure success?

MarketRiders measures success by the sheer number of assets we’re helping our customers manage. We have customers with portfolios ranging from $5,000 to $1MM, so it’s exciting to see that our service works across the board.

What are the most common misconception consumers have about your industry?

Many consumers believe that they need an expensive financial advisor or chase the latest stock tip from Wall Street. It’s simply not true. Most investment advice is biased because of how advisers are compensated. Traditional advisers are paid commissions or ongoing fees for moving their clients into "investment products." This creates a conflict between what is best for your retirement and what is best for the adviser's pocket.

Consumers also believe that they need to constantly be making trades or moving their money around. The truth is, sound investment practices are a bit boring. By going with passive asset allocation, consumers can protect themselves from shifting markets by simply picking a good mix of asset classes instead of trying to pick winners and losers. It also enables consumers to make sound investment decisions without the emotional rollercoaster of picking stocks.

How has your industry changed in the last 5 to 10 years?

Investment advising has started to significantly shift from brick and mortar into the digital space. When we started in 2007, “roboadvising” wasn’t even a coined term yet, let alone an industry. Over the past 5 or 10 years, we’ve seen many companies enter the space and continue to validate our ideas around online portfolio management. Conversely, consumers are becoming more open to exploring their options in online investment management.

What is something you wish every consumer knew about MarketRiders?

We wish that every investor knew they could use asset allocation to manage their own portfolio. We hope to correct the misperception that only Wall Street or expensive financial advisors can management money and create value.

Has your business received any awards or recognition that your customers would like to know about?

MarketRiders has been featured in most major news and financial publications including Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Bloomberg, Forbes, Barron’s, CNN Money, MarketWatch, and more.

How has MarketRiders grown or evolved?

In the past year we have focused on integrating with brokerage accounts and further lowering fees. MarketRiders customers can now optimize their portfolios for their specific broker to enable commission-free trading. We’ve also built a number of interactive tools including a portfolio builder, mutual fund fee analyzer, portfolio performance benchmarks, and more.

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MarketRiders Company Profile

Company Name:
MarketRiders
Year Founded:
2008
Address:
530 Lytton Avenue 2nd Floor
City:
Palo Alto
State/Province:
CA
Postal Code:
94301
Country:
United States
Website:
http://www.marketriders.com/