I have vague recollections of something called the “stock market game,” an after school program at the middle school I attended. I don’t remember participating, which is a bummer.
In middle school, I was enthusiastic about the stock market, spending many mornings before school watching Bloomberg TV, which was exciting in the late 90s! The dot-com bubble hadn’t burst yet, so everything was on the up and up.
If I had the ability to invest as a kid, I would have learned a hard lesson about the stock market: it goes up AND down. What better way for kids to learn than to get involved so that they don’t turn out to be investing noobs like us? 😉
Hanging around the personal finance community and going to FinCon are great ways to get involved. It was at FinCon that I had the opportunity to meet the folks from Stockpile.
Stockpile is an investing platform like T.D. Ameritrade that lets people buy and sell stocks. How Stockpile differs is the focus on fractional shares, the ability to buy pieces of high-value stocks like Amazon.
Stockpile is also one of the more user-friendly platforms I’ve found. Creating an account was quick. Buying a fractional share took seconds. Email notifications are timely when trades are completed. For someone who is new to trading, I found the Stockpile experience to be a pleasant one.
I don’t write reviews for any product or tool that we’re not actually using, which is why my reviews are limited to the Ibotta grocery coupon app and Ting’s cell phone service. I felt so strongly about my experience that I decided to add a Stockpile review to the mix. Like with prior reviews, this post has our link, so thank you for your support. In exchange for using our link, you get $5 for free just to try Stockpile.
What is Stockpile?
Stockpile lets people buy a fractional share, a piece of one share of stock.
Let’s say that you’re interested in giving someone a gift card. You can give that person an Amazon gift card, for example, and they’ll spend money on stuff. Not exactly special, but it gets the job done.
What if you could give someone Amazon stock instead? Now, the price to buy one share is $1,186. You might have the budget to buy one share of Amazon and you might not. That’s why Stockpile is awesome — you can buy a portion of one share.
Stockpile’s desktop view of a portfolio
Learn more about companies and monitor stats in a Stockpile account
How does a Stockpile gift card work?
If you want to use Stockpile for holiday or birthday gifts, you simply buy a gift card online (no account required to buy gift cards!) and print it or email it to the recipient. You can also buy Stockpile gift cards from Staples, Target, and Toys R Us.
With the gift card, the recipient can set up an account himself/herself or a parent can set up a custodial account for a child. Setting up a Stockpile account takes just a couple of minutes.
Once the account is set up, simply redeem the gift card, which puts the money into the Stockpile account. When the recipient is ready, s/he can use the money for the purchase of the stock indicated or something else entirely.
In this example, this account redeemed gift cards for the purchase of fractional shares of Amazon and Tesla.
Buying a gift card does not mean you own the stock. You have to redeem the gift card for the purchase of stock. If you’ve ever used an Amazon gift card, it’s a similar process — you get a gift card and then you have to load your account (i.e. redeem the card to use it).
Takes seconds to redeem a Stockpile gift card
What about the Stockpile app?
With the Stockpile app, you can do a lot of really cool stuff!
You can check the status of your portfolio…
You can buy more shares and gift cards.
But the best part? You can learn the basics of the stock market.
I’m a huge fan of Stockpile as it’s a great way to opt out of the cycle of consumerism, giving people stuff that ends up in landfills. There are too few gifts you can give someone that have the potential for growth, like stocks, a savings account, or a 529 plan.
If you’re on the fence, use our link to get your $5 of free stock from Stockpile. Try it before you buy it (or gift it). 🙂