Stockpile, a platform service enabling people to buy stock by the dollar or give it as a gift, is partnering with Yodlee, the cloud-based platform driving innovation in digital financial services, to bring to Yodlee's network of financial providers innovative new products designed to help banking customers save and invest for their future.
These products, available in 2015, include:
- Invest Your Change: Consumers of Yodlee-powered services will be able to have the spare change from each debit card purchase rounded up to the nearest dollar, and the accumulated change automatically invested each month in the customer's favorite stock.
- Stock Purchasing and Gifting: Consumers of Yodlee-powered services will be able to purchase stock for themselves or give gift cards of stock to others from their online bank account. Customers will be able to pay using their checking account or credit card for a seamless experience.
"Our goal is to make it easy and safe for financial institutions to bring innovations like Stockpile into the digital banking experience," said Eric Connors, SVP of Products at Yodlee. "We think bank customers will love these new apps for investing and gifting stock – a new experience that drives real value for all."
According to the latest Fed survey of consumer finances, while nearly all families in the top 10% of income own shares of stock, 86% of Americans do not directly own stock. Stockpile and Yodlee want to democratize investing by making it easy and affordable for everyone.
As Dan Schatt, author of Virtual Banking, A Guide to Partnering and Innovation, and Chief Commercial Officer, Stockpile explains: "There are many reasons that 86% of Americans don't invest – setting up a brokerage account traditionally has been complicated and you need a minimum investment amount to get started. Many people would love to own the companies they love and patronize frequently but the price is out of reach. When a share of Apple costs $100 or a share of Google costs $500, it is simply too expensive and impractical to own."
"Our offerings give banks a whole new way to engage with their customers and build a deeper relationship," said Avi Lele, CEO of Stockpile. "When I was a kid, people gave savings bonds or stock certificates as gifts for graduation, birthdays and weddings, but these days, banks miss out on gift giving and investment. We're removing the obstacles associated with investing, and making it fun, easy, and affordable for everyone."
"It's been a challenge to get young people interested in investing. It needs to be both simple to start and easy to maintain," said Jim Bruene, Founder of Finovate and the Online Banking Report. "This approach is a promising new model to expand investing access and participation."