August 20, 2015
For many, earning money is less complicated than managing that money once it has been earned. For those fortunate enough to have personal financial advisors and brokers just a phone call away, these challenges have been managed and delegated, with a whole host of wealth management providers such as Ramsey Crookall rolling out branded investment tracker apps.
The rest of us may find ourselves muddling along as best we can, flipping frantically through financial magazines and tracking various accounts with little to no guidance. Specific information and advice can be hard to find and even harder to analyse.
Fortunately, in the last few years, a host of financial apps and websites have appeared to fill these needs.
SigFig Portfolio Tracker
A relative newcomer to a saturated field, SigFig Portfolio Tracker stands out from the competition by being both easy to use and wonderfully customizable. Whether the client chooses to connect their accounts to SigFig automatically, with a secure encryption ensuring all their data remains private, or to enter account and holdings data manually for even more security, SigFig offers the same suite of services.
The service offers performance overviews and details including risk level, fee breakdowns, dividends and yields, and geographic allocation. SigFig is easy to use, intuitive, and cleanly designed.
Best of all, SigFig Portfolio Tracker is free, unlike many other similar apps and services.
Morningstar Portfolio Manager
Morningstar Portfolio Manager initially appears similar to SigFig Portfolio Tracker, offering similar risk analysis, overviews, and details for each account. Unlike some competitors, Morningstar does not allow users to sync accounts to the Tracker, meaning details must be input and updated manually.
However, Morningstar distinguishes itself from the crowd by featuring an X-Ray tool, which allows the client to see details of mutual funds or of ETFs. Seeing more specific breakdowns and projections allows users to make more informed investment decisions.
Like SigFig, Morningstar’s Portfolio Manager is available free.
Google finance offers a free and simple portfolio tracker. With the ability to manually enter or upload portfolios, Google Finance then tracks their overall and daily performance.
With performance charts and the functionality that allows you to download portfolio data into a spreadsheet, Google Finance offers a good, basic, no-nonsense investment tracker.
Perhaps the best feature though is the integration with Google News. This means a news feed is displayed below your portfolios, containing news stories relating to the companies tracked, helping to keep you in the loop, which is no bad thing when your hard-earned money is at stake.
If your goals are more modest, Spendometer may be more appropriate than the above apps. Based on the simple but oft-ignored idea that the best way to make sure you don’t overspend is to have a budget and stick to it, Spendometer helps users to record all their spending and track their budget. Enabling users to see how much of their money they have spent that day, week or month.
Spendometer also offers the ability to view your own spending reports as well as a feature designed to help you keep track of what you’re spending on a night out.
Even for those with somewhat more complicated financial needs, Spendometer can be a useful tool. After all, we can all use reminders to be more conscientious and restrained in our day-to-day spending. Spendometer is a great tool to help you make the most out of your disposable income, whatever its size.
Whether you are seeking an app to remind you of your budget or to provide a detailed profile of your portfolio and its projections, twenty-first century technological ingenuity has provided solutions. The apps, accounts, or trackers profiled above can help you plan your financial future more effectively, ensuring that you remain in control and firmly in your financial driving seat.
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