Equity investments are becoming fairly popular across the world, allowing portfolio trackers to make a stellar comeback over the past couple of months. According to Bloomberg Intelligence, individual investors in the United States have accounted for approximately 19.5% of the total equity trades, in the first half of 2020, with retail investor trades crossing 25% of the overall trading volume on some days of the year. As people are actively investing to capitalize on the ongoing bull run, the demand for comprehensive portfolio trackers has been increasing simultaneously.
Importance of Portfolio Trackers
Portfolio trackers are essentially digital ledgers, listing all investment activities of a user. With a comprehensive list of buy and sell orders available at a glimpse, portfolio trackers ease investors’ burden of remembering their trading activities. Retail traders with multiple investment holdings such as Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) and employer-sponsored 401(k) plans can access all of their stock holdings in one place through portfolio trackers.
These trackers are not restricted to equity trades alone, and can also be used to record multiple debt investments. Often, portfolio trackers keep tabs on a variety of instruments to provide insights into broader market performance. To illustrate with an example, the recent increase in benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury Yields triggered an equity sell-off worldwide, causing global indices to suffer intraday losses. With an expected rise in interest rates, investors have been turning towards debt securities.
Another benefit of using portfolio trackers is that investors can view their overall profit or loss from a particular trade. It also displays the net return on investment by adjusting the prevailing prices with the initial costs of investment. Thus, you can view the amount of potential gain without having to exit your position in a particular stock.
Best Portfolio Trackers in 2021
Singling out one best stock tracking app is not feasible, as a variety of portfolio trackers offer distinctive features to appeal to a particular class of investors. However, some of the most popular portfolio trackers (free and subscription-based) are listed as follows:
1. StocksToTrade Portfolio Tracker
This platform is one of the most user-friendly and comprehensive trackers available in the market. It offers an affordable trial period for new users, at $7 for 14 days. Investors get access to all of the features and functions of this platform, including charts, technical indicators, and the latest news and press releases published by companies being tracked.
StocksToTrade platform directly integrates with a user’s broker to sync the list of trades and holdings. It also offers extremely fast level 1 data across major US markets and real-time sync of the portfolio with the market data.
2. Yahoo Finance
Yahoo Finance portfolio tracker has been around for a long time, making it one of the oldest websites in this field. While the site lost its luster a couple of years ago as portfolio trackers went out of fashion, it has been making a steady revival.
Yahoo Finance’s free portfolio tracker is highly demanded among novice investors, given its ease of accessibility and the parent site’s brand recognition. The paid version of the portfolio tracker is designed to appeal to more experienced investors, offering a plethora of information about the holding companies in a snapshot. However, Yahoo Finance Premium membership starts at $49.99 per month, putting it on the pricey side of the list.
3. Sharesight Portfolio Tracker
Sharesight portfolio tracker follows a slightly different pricing model. It allows users to track up to 10 holdings for free, after which it has a volume-based pricing plan. The ‘Starter’ plan covers up to 20 holdings, with an automatic dividend and price alert feature, at a price of $15 per month. More extensive ‘Investor’ and ‘Expert’ plans cost around $24 and $31 per month, respectively.
Sharesight provides annualized, currency-adjusted price performance of stocks, along with customized tax reporting benefits. It also displays the amount of dividend generated by a holding company at any given time. It also tracks major cryptocurrencies.
4. Morningstar Portfolio Manager
Morningstar Portfolio’s X-ray feature has made it one of the top portfolio trackers in the market. This feature allows investors to view its holdings at a glance, displaying the most important performance indicators only. Investors who execute a large volume of trades periodically benefit substantially from such a snapshot view of their entire portfolio.
While Morningstar has a free version of its portfolio tracker, it has very limited features. Morningstar Premium version, on the other hand, is priced at $199 per year and contains exclusive features like analyst reports and advice, top investment picks, and unlimited access to portfolio X-ray features.
Investments are restricted equity investments in large-cap companies alone. With most people betting on the stock markets to capitalize on the market trends and volatility, having an exhaustive portfolio tracker can help investors streamline their investment strategies, by offering a digital landscape of net profits or losses.