Marcus by Goldman Sachs Launches Roboadvisor Platform
When most consumers think of Goldman Sachs, they likely think of a wealthy Wall Streeter. That’s partially why the bank introduced its Marcus brand in 2016 as a means of courting a new consumer market. Now, Goldman is continuing those efforts with the debut of Marcus Invest — a low-fee roboadvisor platform.
Marcus Invest will automatically allocate consumer funds in a portfolio of ETFs selected to match the customers’ risk tolerance and investment timeline. It also includes “tax-smart management,” also known as tax loss harvesting. Currently, accounts can be opened with a deposit of as little as $1,000. The debut of the feature makes good on a promise Goldman made back in 2019, although the launch was obviously delayed from its 2020 timeframe.
Like many roboadvisors, the platform does charge an annual advisory fee assessed as a percentage of the account’s portfolio value — in this case, 0.35%. This means that an account with $10,000 would pay approximately $35 a year for Marcus Invest. For comparison, roboadvisor platforms Wealthfront and Betterment both have plans with 0.25% annual advisory fees. However, it is lower than some other options such as Wealthsimple, which charges a 0.50% advisory fee for accounts with less than $100,000 invested. Also notable is that, for Marcus portfolios that include Goldman Sachs ETFs, an ETF fee credit will be applied to accountholders’ advisory fee (up to the full amount of the advisory fee).
Interestingly, while Marcus began with banking accounts and has now expanded into roboadvisors, other platforms have expanded in the opposite direction. Among them, the aforementioned Wealthfront and Betterment platforms both now offer their own digital banking accounts with savings and checking features. As of this writing, Marcus actually has an edge over those offerings in terms of APY, with Marcus’ 0.50% APY topping the 0.35% and 0.40% APYs for Wealthfront and Betterment respectively.
The launch of Marcus Invest comes amid some other shakeups for the brand. Last month, it was announced that the company would be shutting down the Clarity Money personal finance app, which it acquired back in 2018. Instead, select features from that platform have been integrated into the Marcus app and are available even to those without Marcus accounts.
Although the Marcus brand may not be as ubiquitous as Goldman Sachs may have hoped, it has made some important strides in recent years, with the launch of Marcus Invest now counted among those progressive moves. With a competitive fee (especially when the potential Goldman Sachs ETF credits are factored in) and a relatively low account minimum, the platform seems well-positioned in the increasingly popular market. For those reasons, it’s probably worth keeping an eye on Marcus and Marcus Invest in the months ahead.