Micro-investing app, Acorns, today launched ‘My Finances’, a new feature for Australian customers that helps them better understand and control their spending habits.
My Finances uses machine-learning to discover individual’s spending patterns and provide personalised insights into savings opportunities. It allows consumers to get an overview of their spending habits and identifying areas of wastage; such as whether a user is on track to spend more on lunch this month than last, and therefore should start bringing lunch to work.
The new features announced today were developed by Acorns Australia to meet customers’ specific demands.
“Since we launched Acorns in Australia just over a year ago, one of the biggest frustrations we hear from customers is that personal finance is difficult to manage and plan, especially without the right tools,” Acorns Managing Director, George Lucas, said. “Acorns helps users save in a way traditional banking products can’t. My Finances now goes one step further on this education journey and brings the power of machine learning to assist individuals with personal, actionable insights into their finances.
“The machine-learning within Acorns allows us to provide a personalised user experience and insights without additional information being entered manually - a budget for example.”
Millennials struggle to save
Echoing the feedback from Australian consumers, new research among millennials from Acorns Australia on their ability to manage money says three out of four (75 per cent) have to make sacrifices towards the end of the pay cycle in order to make ends meet.
Close to 70 per cent also claim to have a monthly budget, but half (49 per cent) confess not sticking to it. Other key findings from the research include:
* 54 per cent skimp on meals or eat cheaply to help money go further
* Most use willpower to stop themselves from spending (48 per cent) rather than a hard to touch savings account.
* 65 per cent believe mobile and online access to their finances is helping them be more confident about managing their money.
Acorns Australia is also responding to user demands for a more socially responsible attitude towards finance with the launch of a Carbon Footprint estimator.
The tool calculates a user’s carbon usage based on their spending activities and has the stamp of approval from Emerald Club, Australia’s largest socially-responsible investment platform. This will only be available to Acorns Australia customers.