Barclays launches robo-advisor for £5k investments with Scalable
Barclays has launched a digital wealth management services for current account customers with a minimum of £5,000 to invest.
The new robo-advisor service, called ‘Barclays Plan & Invest’, was developed in partnership with Munich-based start-up Scalable Capital.
The London-based wealth manager, which also serves investors in Germany and Austria, offers users personalised, globally diversified and fully managed portfolios.
Barclays hopes its new service with Scalable will help close the advice gap many in the industry have long criticised.
Barclays Plan & Invest
The bank’s robo-adviser will offer customers active and passive funds through a managed portfolio and “personalised investment plan”.
Customers will need to complete a questionnaire setting financial goals. They will also need to take a personality assessment to determine their risk appetite.
Barclays will then use information to create a personalised plan. This plan could take the form of one of more than 10,000 investment paths.
An ongoing annual fee of between 1.39% and 1.59% of funds will be charged once money is invested in the account.
Service costs are fixed at 0.95% of funds invested, and product costs range from 0.25% to 0.45%.
The bank is currently piloting the service. It is accessible through Barclay’s mobile banking app for current account holders with £5,000 or more to invest.
The bank will call customers once a year to ensure customers are on the right portfolio and plan.
Spike in investing during COVID-19
“Over the last few months, we’ve seen a rise in the number of people wanting to invest for the first time,” says Barclays’ chief executive of wealth management and investments, Dirk Klee.
“It feels more important than ever that we give people the right tools and advice to plan for their financial future.”
During COVID-19, investment apps have boomed. Aussie trading app Stake, which also operates in the UK, told FinTech Futures that March trading volumes increased by nine times from what they were in December.
According to Bloomberg sources, in March US trading app Robinhood made $60 million, triple what it made in March 2019.
Early moves in robo-advisory space
In 2017, Barclays launched its direct-to-consumer investment service which marked its move into the robo-advisory space.
Users could invest in a single Barclays fund and build a portfolio.
Klee says Barclays has launched the new service in part to introduce more “convenience and affordability” to these existing wealth management services.
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