Simply Wall St, an online service for investors that claims to offer investors everything that the best human stock broker could offer, but orders of magnitude cheaper, has launched its service in New Zealand and Canada.
The company, founded in Australia in 2014, claims to have more than tripled the number of users in 2016 to more than 90,000 in the Australian, US and UK markets.
It claims to provide “actionable, well researched information on stocks in the form of beautiful and easy to understand infographics, [to help investors] find new investment opportunities based on their preferences” and to offer “detailed portfolio analysis. … [and] institutional quality data from Standard and Poor’s Capital IQ, with over 1,000 data points updated every six hours … to provide detailed fundamental analysis on each of the over 18,000 companies listed on the US, UK, AUS, CAN and NZ stock exchanges.”
Simply Wall St attributes its rapid growth to the way it disintermediates the broker from the investment equation, “removing the broker’s self-interests, and providing the user with the same high quality financial data used by institutions and professionals, at a fraction of a cost.”
CEO and founder, Al Bentley, said: “Stock brokers were once considered trusted advisers, motivated to help their retail investor clients succeed in the market. But increasingly we’re seeing brokerage fees on the rise, and brokers acting in their own self-interest.
“Many investors have tried to overcome this by switching to discount brokerages, but though they are obviously cheaper, these brokers cannot provide a great deal of useful advice or help for retail investors.
“In fact, research by the ASX has uncovered that only 53 percent of full service brokers’ clients are happy with the level of consultation they receive – an incredibly low number, given the consultative nature of their work. The end result can be that the client underperforms the market, or even loses money.”