Useful apps


  • OPENFOLIO

  • TRADEHERO

  • SPENDING TRACKER

  • STOCKTWITS
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This article first appeared in Personal Wealth, The Edge Malaysia Weekly, on December 19 - 25, 2016.

 

Here are four mobile and/or web-based applications that can help you better manage and invest your wealth.

 

TradeHero 

Interested in stock market trading but do not know where to start? Try trading virtually on 

TradeHero — a stock market simulation app. It uses near real-world data from stock exchanges to create a global social investment network where users can compete with friends on their social networks or on global leader boards with users from around the world.

Each user is given US$100,000 to manage a virtual stock portfolio. From there, he is able to trade with near real-time quotes from 35 bourses, including Bursa Malaysia, Nasdaq, the New York Stock Exchange, Singapore Exchange and Bursa Efek Indonesia (IDX). Trading on Bursa Malaysia, for example, gives the user the option to buy local stocks such as Petronas Chemicals Group Bhd, DRB-Hicom Bhd and Maxis Bhd. 

Meanwhile, experienced users — the well-informed, expert traders with reputable portfolios — are able to monetise via the app. The “Heroes” can get other users to pay and subscribe to follow their buy and sell actions, allowing the subscribers to receive expert trading tips and insights into the successful investment strategies of the heroes they follow. 

The app also provides stock market education videos and a constantly updated trading newsfeed to help improve its users’ knowledge. Users can also get stock market alerts to help them trade more efficiently.

Launched in 2012, TradeHero was developed by Singapore-based app developer WebHero. The app has been downloaded by more than 500,000 users worldwide. Last year, the company partnered Malaysia’s largest structured warrants issuer, Macquarie Capital Securities (M) Sdn Bhd, to organise Warrant Hero — Malaysia’s first virtual warrant competition — which offered a prize of RM100,000.

TradeHero is free to be downloaded from the App Store and Google Play. — By Khairani Afifi Noordin

 

Openfolio

Openfolio, developed by a team that identifies itself as “Wall Street exiles” and tech veterans, is aimed at making personal investing simpler, more relevant and more transparent for the man in the street. 

Instead of just relying on stock-only benchmarks, such as the S&P 500, Openfolio believes the best index for investors is real data from other retail investors. The app uses data extracted from thousands of real portfolios on the platform to create the first social benchmark. 

The anonymous data, including holdings, trades and performance, are used to enhance community-sourced benchmarks. No user will be able to see other users’ data unless both users are in a private group to discuss investments. Even then, no dollar amounts are ever shared. 

Called the Openfolio Investor Average, the benchmark gives investors insight into the performance returns of real investors on the platform. Both CNNMoney and Fidelity use it to let their users compare their portfolios. 

The app also offers a benchmark called Investors Like You, which enables users to compare their investment performance against a group of retail investors, who share their characteristics such as age, income, assets and investment goals to see how they are doing relative to their peers. 

With these benchmarks, instead of comparing their portfolios against a basket of publicly traded stocks, investors can make a more relevant and meaningful comparison. Moreover, the app utilises data generated from users to offer unbiased market insights, including highlights of why the top investors are performing well and why the bottom investors are performing poorly to show the best ways to achieve investment success. 

With more than 70,000 users on the platform, Openfolio currently focuses on the US market. But it has plans to expand globally. While 

Malaysian investors do not have access to the platform yet, there is still a lot they can do with the app even without a linked brokerage account, such as tracking the performance of the Openfolio Investors Average and utilising its securities database. 

Openfolio is free to be downloaded from the App Store. It can also be accessed via the company’s website, openfolio.com. — By Maxine Yong

 

Spending Tracker

Spending Tracker is a budget tracking app that allows users to record their daily expenses and have a better picture of their spending patterns.

Once downloaded, app users can key in their monthly income and start recording their expenses under different categories, such as eating out, travel, fuel, sports, entertainment and shopping. Users can also create their own categories. 

By keying in their expenses daily, the app will keep tabs on the user’s monthly balance. A pool of data will be available for app users to analyse their spending patterns on a weekly, monthly or yearly basis. 

Other features include a column chart of the spending percentage of each category compared with the total expenditure. The app also provides users with a line chart that indicates their monthly cash flow. 

The app, however, has a shortcoming. It automatically assumes that its users receive their monthly salary on the first day of the month. For example, if a user receives his salary on the 26th of the month and wants to start his tracking cycle on that day, he is unable to do so. 

The most challenging thing for app users is that they have to remind themselves to key in their expenses every time they pay for something. While there are fixed expenses every month, such as phone and utility bills, which can be keyed in automatically every month, users can only do so by making an in-app payment. 

The app is available for free on the App Store and Google Play. — By Kuek Ser Kwang Zhe

 

StockTwits

To be on the ball in terms of market news, sentiment and stock picking are the main preoccupation of those who trade or invest in the stock market. To help traders, investors and analysts do a better job, StockTwits, dubbed the “Twitter for the stock market”, was developed. 

StockTwits is a social media platform that allows users to share market news, ideas and stock information before making a trade. It was founded in 2008 by Howard Lindzon, a Canadian hedge fund manager and super angel investor, and Soren Macbeth, a former information security engineer and analyst for a Fortune 500 company and entrepreneur, based on Lindzon’s idea that Twitter would be great for stocks and markets. 

According to its website, the app has registered more than 300,000 investors, market professionals and public companies as its users. It is also currently the world’s largest social network for investors and traders.

The platform streams ideas and links charts and other 

financial data in messages of 140 characters or less, making the information easily digestible for users. It also enables users to contribute to the information stream and follow specific stocks or contributors. 

StockTwits users tout it as a one of the foremost tools for the stock market as its real-time trending feed allows them to have immediate information on why something is happening to a company. The immediate access to information allows them to make decisions on a trade that helps them save or make more money. The only drawback is that there is no way to ascertain whether the information on the feed is genuine. 

Nevertheless, while the platform focuses on the US market, prospective Malaysian users can still use the app as a gateway into the US market. 

The app is available for free on the App Store and Google Play. — By Nur Azlin Abdul Karim