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PLEASE NOTE: Emperor Investments no longer exists. We currently recommend M1 Finance as a great robo advisor for everybody. Head over to our best robo advisors page for more information and options
2019 Emperor Investments Review
Did you know the male emperor penguin is responsible for safeguarding the egg in the brood pouch as the female hunts for food? The Emperor Investments Robo Advisor is designed to do just that: to guard your nest egg. In this case, Emperor Investments offers automated equity investing to help achieve your goals.
The service builds exclusive pure equity portfolios, so you directly own the companies in your investment portfolio. Unlike other Robo Advisors that build portfolios based on ETFs, bonds, and commodities, Emperor Investments tailor-makes equity portfolios that are suited for your goals. Equity stocks are handpicked and generated by Emperor’s “Dream Team” algorithm and are further personalized by investment analysts to select the option that offers a compelling value proposition.
Does this all sound confusing? Don’t worry; Emperor Investments not only gives you direct ownership over companies that you invest in but your investment portfolio will be made up of companies that have a history of paying cash dividends. This is a win-win situation.
If you want to give pure equity investing a try, Emperor Investments is a sterling choice. Allow us to dig deeper so we can determine the pros and cons of this unique Robo Advisor.
Let’s begin our 2019 Emperor Investments review by discussing the fees and minimum deposit. With Emperor Investments, this is as simple as it gets: you only pay a 0.60% annual fee with a $500 minimum deposit. You don’t have to worry about any hidden ETF fees, which is common among other robo advisors. The 0.60% fee is all you will pay.
However, if you sign up using our link, you get your first six months managed for free.
Betterment and Wealthsimple charge lower fees with no minimum deposit. But keep in mind, you might end up paying additional third party fees to the fund providers.
However, Emperor Investments will include personalized and tailored portfolios comprised of 100% stocks, dividend reinvesting, and automatic rebalancing. Your portfolio will only consist of historically dividend-paying companies and you won’t have to worry about hidden fees.
While the 0.6% annual fee isn’t the lowest in the world of automated investing, it’s also not the highest, and Emperor Investments makes it easy for investors to begin their journey into pure equity investing.
In fact, their service might even be more comparable to a traditional advisor (with 2-3% fees) since they not only use technology, but also review each company in your portfolio by hand.
Equity Investing Comparison Chart
If you’re unfamiliar with pure equity investing and its benefits, have a look at this comparison chart, which compares Pure Equity Investing vs. ETFs and Mutual Funds:
Flexibility & Diversification
Looking at the service as a whole, it’s easy to misjudge Emperor Investments when it comes to flexibility. Since the service focuses solely on pure equity investing, some investors might find the service lacking diversification, and they would be correct.
However, if what you’re looking for is a straightforward fee structure, direct ownership of the companies in your portfolio, and stock portfolios tailored to your specific goals, the lack of diversification isn’t really a concern. Besides, you can always just use Emperor as the equity portion of your overall investment strategy.
Ease of Use
Emperor Investments is simple and easy to use. You can get started by answering a few questions such as your age, primary source of income, total assets, and liabilities. The service then automatically creates your pure equity portfolio based on your answers.
The portfolio will be composed of holdings in health care, food and beverage, utilities, personal and household goods, industrial goods and services, and chemicals.
After signing up, all that is required is to make the initial deposit so you can enjoy the benefits of pure equity investing.
But how does it all work? Emperor Investments utilizes a unique three-step approach to build a Dream Team of companies for your portfolio.
Every quarter, our technology sifts through every company on the U.S. stock exchanges and compiles a list of dividend-paying stocks that pass our strict filters.
One of these filters is that companies must have not reduced their dividend payments in at least 15 years.
From there, our team of security analysts do a deeper dive into each company and further refine that list. They look into qualitative factors that technology just can’t assess yet such as a company’s management team.
We call this pool of refined stocks the Dream Team.
Every time you create a goal, our technology considers the price and industry of stocks in the Dream Team and designs a diversified portfolio tailored to your needs. To get the best fit, we take into account your investing preferences (which we determine during onboarding), as well as the details you provide when creating a goal.
From there, we automatically reinvest your dividends (unless you want to withdraw them as a passive income stream), and automatically rebalance your portfolio as more information comes in with the passage of time.
Account Types and Services
Emperor Investments is all about pure equity investing. No ETFs and no mutual funds. Others might say it is safer to invest in a portfolio of several different types of ETFs (since you are basically buying a whole collection of different stocks or bonds), but having direct ownership of the companies in your tailored and personalized equity portfolio is, without a doubt, a more exciting approach to automated investing.
Emperor Investments believes in the passive-active approach to earn the most from your investments. It’s all about balance. Traditional robo advisors are geared more towards passive investing and ETFs, which earn money based on the return of the index. But for investors who want a more customized portfolio from selected dividend-paying equities, Emperor Investments is a good choice.
Owning businesses and corporations that consistently earn and payout dividends is one of the best ways to build long-term wealth.
Suitability for Different Budgets
Emperor used to have a minimum account size of $2,000 but in June 2019 changed it to only $500 to be more in line with other robo advisors. Honestly, we don’t mind a $2,000 minimum balance; that’s about when you will start to see the most benefit from your deposits.
But we are glad to see the Emperor team listening to their customers and allowing those with smaller investment amounts to take advantage of automated investing.
The slightly higher 0.6% annual fee might be a turn-off for some investors who are planning to invest more money in their accounts. However, the service ensures no hidden management fees so you can work towards your financial goals without paying unnecessary fees in the process.
Overall, we feel like the fees and minimum balance are both reasonable for the service you get, and is well-suited for investors of all budgets.
Emperor Investments offers investors the chance to experience an equity advantage. We like the idea of having direct ownership of the companies in our investment portfolio, and we also like the low $500 minimum deposit.
The 0.6% annual fee is acceptable given the personalized experience that Emperor Investments has to offer, not to mention the increased growth potential and no hidden fees. Previously, you’d have to be a wealthy investor to take advantage of pure equity investing and go through a traditional advisor charging 2-3%, instead of Emperor’s 0.60%.
Plus, with our link, you get six months free, and the extra security of having no hidden expenses or ETF fees makes it a solid choice.
Fees and Deposit Limits
Ease of Use
Account Types and Services
Reader Rating0 Votes
No fees for accounts under $15,000 (with our link)
Fixed 0.25% management fee is very reasonable
New 529 college savings plan
Direct Indexing available to accounts over $100,000