Tag Archives: Wealthfront


How To Beat The Market

There are a million web sites, books and pundits who will tell you that you can’t beat the market. They’re all wrong. Or, at least, they’re not framing things correctly. And I think that’s a major problem. My Wife’s Disappointment This thought occurred to me the other day when I was hiking with my wife in the redwoods of Muir Woods National Monument, outside of San Francisco. We were hiking and talking and, as sometimes happens, we started talking about investing. I was telling her about automated investment services like Wealthfront and what they were doing for the world. I explained how they built broadly diversified, optimized portfolios that are managed at extraordinarily low costs. I talked about how they […]

Debunking The Myth of Magical Options Strategies

Earlier this month, Duncan Gilchrist and I wrote a blog debunking the idea that you can achieve high returns with limited downside using hedge funds. Our research compared the risk adjusted returns of a standard, broadly diversified Wealthfront portfolio with the average returns of hedge funds over the past ten years. The data showed that, despite all the hype, money and excitement hedge funds elicit, you would have achieved a far better risk-adjusted return with a Wealthfront portfolio. Specifically, the Wealthfront portfolio posted a Sortino ratio of 0.62 vs. 0.43 for the HFRI hedge fund index during the time period studied. Importantly, we also showed how much quicker the Wealthfront portfolio bounced back from the financial crisis of 2008, with […]

Why Did Wealthfront Hire A World-Class Research Team?

Readers of our blog know we are big advocates of passive investing. We believe that buying a broadly diversified portfolio and running it at extraordinarily low costs is the foundation of any sound investment strategy. Given how simple our approach is, you might ask why we employ a research team of six PhDs led by Burt Malkiel, the man who inspired the creation of the index fund. What, exactly, do they do all day? Well, for more than forty years, Burt has said that since you can’t beat the market you should focus your investment efforts on the three things that actually can make a difference to your investment returns: diversifying your portfolio, minimizing cost and minimizing taxes. Not surprisingly, […]

The Fight for a Fiduciary Standard

Wealthfront was founded on a simple vision: that every investor, large and small, deserves sophisticated financial advice. And contrary to a large majority of the industry, we always put our clients first. A teacher making $50,000 a year deserves the same high-quality investment service as an institution managing $500 million. It’s why I signed up as a Wealthfront client when it launched, why I joined the company two years ago, and what inspires me and my colleagues to come to work each day. If you come visit our offices in Palo Alto, you’ll see a giant chalk wall in the back of the office reminding us of this. All the ideas center around one thing: doing the best possible thing […]

$1 Billion in 2.5 Years

When we launched Wealthfront in December 2011, the thought of getting to $1 billion in assets under management seemed audacious. Today,  I am proud to announce that not only has Wealthfront attracted more than $1 billion under management; we have managed to do so in less than two and a half years since launch. To commemorate this special occasion, we’ve also created a graphic storyline of the journey we’ve taken to get here. This is an incredibly gratifying milestone for the team at Wealthfront, and we couldn’t have done it without the trust and support of each and every one of our clients. There is no question this accomplishment would not have been possible if not for our focus on two […]

The Automated Investment Service for Everyone

Wealthfront is the world’s largest and fastest-growing automated investment service (AIS). With more than $800 million in client assets under management, Wealthfront offers the most tax-efficient and low-cost index fund-based solution for long-term investors on the market. Having grown more than 700% since the start of 2013, Wealthfront now provides service to clients across all 50 states and Washington, D.C., with client accounts ranging in size from $5,000 to over $10,000,000. Wealthfront is on the leading edge of a much larger trend, one catalyzed by a new generation of younger investors. There are 90 million people in the millennial generation with an aggregate net worth of more than $2 Trillion. They have grown up with software and lived through two […]

Wealthfront Named ETF Strategist of the Year

Today I am proud to announce that Wealthfront has been named the “ETF Strategist of the Year” by ETF.com (formerly IndexUniverse), the world’s leading authority on exchange-traded funds. We are especially gratified to be chosen for this award from among all investment management firms that use ETFs, not just new entrants. At Wealthfront, we strive to build a world-class investment service and we’re proud to have assembled an unparalleled investment team led by Burton Malkiel. Over the past year, we added asset classes, released an improved and more diversified investment mix, delivered different asset allocations for taxable vs. retirement accounts to improve after tax returns, and launched the Wealthfront 500. In short, we aim to relentlessly improve our service to […]

Announcing Wealthfront for iPhone

Wealthfront became the largest and fastest-growing software-based financial advisor—with over $700 million in assets under management— by providing a simple, automated service for managing your long-term investments. Wealthfront monitors your investments for opportunities to rebalance your portfolio and harvest tax losses every day so you don’t have to. Unlike most investment applications for the iPhone, Wealthfront decided to design, from the ground up, a way for our clients to see how their investments are being managed, anytime, from their iPhone. Download: Wealthfront for iPhone  A Personal Feed from Wealthfront The Wealthfront application is structured around a feed of updates about your accounts. Most of our clients appreciate that Wealthfront can be their “set it and forget it,” automated investment service. They […]

Wealthfront Reaches Over Half a Billion Dollars in 2013

At Wealthfront, we believe everyone deserves sophisticated financial advice. Our mission is to provide the same kind of high-quality investment services offered by the finest financial institutions and private wealth managers, without the high account minimums or costs. 2013 was a ground-breaking year for our service.  Although we began the year with less than $100 million in assets under management, we closed 2013 with over $538 million, growing over 450% to become the largest and fastest-growing software-based financial advisor.  In fact, Wealthfront enters 2014 larger than 87% of RIAs in the United States.   Two Massive Trends: Passive Investing & The Rise of Millennials Our growth in 2013 exceeded even our most optimistic projections, so we’ve spent some time investigating […]

When to Diversify Across Financial Advisors

Last month Wealthfront hosted an event that featured our chief investment officer, Burt Malkiel.  It’s wonderful to listen to Burt, because he discusses the markets with such clarity. Markets go up, and markets go down.  You can’t control them. As an investor, you should instead focus your efforts on the three things you can control that will make a difference:  Diversify your portfolio, minimize fees and minimize taxes. During our Q&A session, one of our clients asked Burt, “Does it make sense to diversify across financial advisors?” Burt’s answer was simple: “There is no real benefit to diversifying advisors if your advisor follows my advice of diversifying your portfolio across index funds that represent a variety of asset classes. Hiring […]