Cash App Introduces Round-Up Investing Feature for Debit Card
Debit card customers looking to grow their investments gained a new, automated option today as Block Inc. (formerly Square Inc.) officially announced a new feature for its popular Cash App. Now, customers with the Cash App Cash Card can opt into Round Ups as a means of growing their investments. When this feature is toggled on, Cash App will round up debit card purchases to the nearest dollar and invest the difference. For example, if a user buys a cup of coffee for $3.55 with their Cash Card, the cardholders would see their spendable balance reduce by $4, with the 45¢ going toward their investments.
Currently, those who elect to participate in the Round Ups feature can choose from a number of investment options. Specifically, they can select an individual stock or ETFs listed by Cash App. Alternatively, Rounds Up funds can also be used to purchase Bitcoin with the app. After a selection is made, cardholders can change the destination of their funds or toggle off Round Ups altogether by tapping the Cash Card tab and then “Round Ups.” This is also where customers can view recent Round Up activity.
One thing that’s not 100% clear is how Cash Card’s signature Boosts will be impacted by Round Ups or vice versa. Instead, the app’s FAQ simply states, “The Round Up will be funded from your balance, and the Boost will be applied by Cash App.” However, since Boosts typically adjust the purchase price on the spot, it stands to reason that the net total is what the ensuing Round Up would ultimately be based on.
On that note, Cash App has also quietly updated its Boosts interface in conjunction with the new feature, allowing users to scroll through current offers on one page rather than swipe through them individually. Some of the current Boosts available include 6% off a Lyft ride, 10% off Crocs, 10% off a Fandango purchase, 10% off at Starbucks, 5% worth of Bitcoin at any restaurant, and many more.
As any FinTech observer can surely tell you, Cash App certainly isn’t the first finance app to integrate a Round Ups feature. In fact, the concept is perhaps more closely associated with the app Acorns, but other platforms including Revolut, One Finance, Robinhood, and many more now offer some version of the feature.
That said, Cash App’s version does seem to be a good fit for the app, although some potential upgrades could be imagined. For example, it might be interesting if the platform allowed cardholders to automatically divert the cashback they earn from Boosts toward their selected investment. Of course, we’ll need to wait and see if such upgrades could be in the cards down the road.