- Pricing and Fees
- Investment Research
- Portfolio Building
- Ease of Use
If you’re involved in the stock market world, you may have heard of Nvstr. A brokerage, Nvstr offers many features as well as unique access to the opinions of intelligent investors. So, is Nvstr really all it says? Read our review to learn more.
Introduction To Nvstr
Nvstr is a unique brokerage that focuses on giving you access to the opinions of intelligent investors rather than bombarding you with technical charts and stock news. The opinions included are not only from well-known analysts and fund managers, but also from friends, family, and other smart traders using Nvstr. The upside of this is that Nvstr makes it easy to discern the bullish and bearish arguments for any given stock.
In addition, as far as brokerages go, Nvstr is relatively competitive. The platform offers reasonable trading fees and low margin rates, as well as simulated investing accounts.
It’s free to open a brokerage account with Nvstr, and the company will even give you cash for doing so. When you sign up, you are “randomly” awarded a cash prize between $20 and $1,000. The only catch is that you must place a trade within one year and the award cash cannot be withdrawn for at least one year.
Trades on Nvstr are competitively priced. The brokerage charges a standard $4.95 per trade commission with no account minimums. Margin rates are also capped at just 6.5%.
The fundamental feature of Nvstr is ideas-based investing. Instead of presenting you with technical charts, analyst price targets, or real-time stock news like most other brokerages, Nvstr presents you with ideas from other investors. These ideas take several different forms.
First, you can see what the world’s best traders and analysts are thinking. Nvstr allows you to quickly and simply explore the portfolios of famous investors like Warren Buffett, Carl Icahn, Bill Ackman, and many more.
Taking this one step further, Nvstr gives you the same insight into the portfolios of anyone using the brokerage. You can establish “connections” with other traders – family, friends, or strangers whose investing style you look up to – to share trading ideas and information about your portfolios.
Within those portfolios, you’ll find information about the expected return on particular stocks and the investor’s confidence in that expected return. Just as important, you can compare the expected return to actual performance at a glance, as well as quickly see how well that trader’s stock ideas have performed historically. These easy to find metrics allow you to evaluate immediately whether someone’s ideas have a history of profitability.
Nvstr also allows for some interesting interactions between traders that enhance the usability of the platform for increasing your own knowledge base. For any idea you see, there is an “ask why” button that allows you to ask the original investor to give you more information about where their expected return from a position comes from.
In addition, when you go to investigate a single stock’s page, you’ll find a list of pros and cons for that stock in addition to the standard fundamental information. As on a forum board, investors can upvote and downvote these pro and con ideas so that the best reasons for owning, shorting, or avoiding a stock are surfaced to the top of the list. You can also quickly see what ratings, if any, your connections have for that stock and their respective price targets.
Another critical feature that Nvstr provides is access to Capital IQ. This trading research software is prohibitively expensive for most individual traders, but Nvstr provides a slimmed-down version of it for free. Even if the social features of Nvstr don’t appeal to you, many traders will find that access to Capital IQ is worth signing up with this brokerage.
The version of Capital IQ available on Nvstr is primarily aimed at comparing any selected stock to similar companies in the same industry. You can quickly filter which peer companies are included your comparison, and a graphical interface makes it easy to see differences at a glance. Full tables of fundamental information are also available. Note that there is no export function to bring the data into Excel, although you can copy and paste it to make it usable with some formatting work.
Nvstr offers one other important feature: automatic portfolio rebalancing. Since choosing individual stocks based on ideas can lead to an unbalanced portfolio, with stocks poorly weighted across different industries, Nvstr offers a one-click optimizer to help investors mitigate risk and improve returns. Nvstr’s portfolio optimization tool shows you how much of each stock in your portfolio you will buy or sell, then takes care of the trades for you with just a single click.
Nvstr’s mechanism for determining what is balanced is based on the idea of minimum variance, which is widely accepted as good portfolio management practice. Just beware that optimizing your portfolio does require a number of trades, which brings with it a slew of commissions.
Layout and Customization
Nvstr’s platform is much cleaner than what you’ll find from most other brokerages. That’s not because Nvstr offer less information, but the site designers took care to make sure that menus are slimmed down and pages are organized without redundant information. Overall, the web platform is straightforward to navigate and makes it easy to explore ideas from your connections.
Nvstr differentiates itself by being both a brokerage and an ideas-generating platform. Trading sites that allow you to peek into the portfolios of well-known analysts and even other investors are not new. But most of these platforms don’t offer the same interaction among traders through forum-style pros and cons lists, “ask why” buttons, and connection networks. In addition, Nvstr stands out for coupling these features with the ability to place trades directly on the platform, at a price that rivals most popular brokerages. The inclusion of a slimmed-down version of Capital IQ is also a major advantage for fundamental traders.
What Type of Trader is Nvstr Best For?
Nvstr is a strong candidate platform for medium- and long-term investors in need of a new brokerage. The format of ideas and the inclusion of automatic portfolio optimization and Capital IQ speak directly to the needs of these investors. Plus, the ability to make connections on the platform and follow traders over the long term adapts itself well to medium-term active investing. While day traders could potentially benefit from ideas on Nvstr, the lack of technical charts means that most short-term traders won’t find many helpful tools on the platform.
- See expected returns on stocks from well-known investors and everyday traders
- Forum-like pros and cons list for every stock
- Includes basic version of Capital IQ for comparing similar companies
- Automatic portfolio optimization based on minimum variance
- Clean, easy-to-navigate layout
- Very few technical analysis tools for short-term traders
- Brokerage functions are limited to stocks and basic options trading