Popular demand for cryptocurrency has prompted Australia’s leading micro-investing platform Raiz (formerly Acorns) to add a bitcoin investment option. Individual investors can round up their spare change and regularly invest in a bitcoin investment portfolio.
Leading Australian Micro-Investing App Now Offers Bitcoin Exposure
Australia’s leading micro-investing platform Raiz announced on Tuesday that it has launched a portfolio with a bitcoin allocation. The new portfolio, called Sapphire, took 18 months to develop. Its investment objective “is to provide exposure to bitcoin in a managed, risk-adjusted way,” the company described. Raiz CEO George Lucas commented:
Although this latest portfolio offering from Raiz is very high risk, feedback from many customers has clearly shown that they have an appetite for an investment strategy that has an exposure to cryptocurrencies.
“Many of our investors are millennials,” Raiz noted, adding that millennials are “more inclined to put money into crypto assets,” citing a report by U.S. brokerage firm Charles Schwab published in December last year. The company was previously known as Acorns Australia but changed its name to Raiz as it became an independent Australian company, breaking away from its original U.S. Acorns brand.
Raiz will trade and store bitcoin with Gemini, a U.S.-based cryptocurrency exchange and custodian founded by the Winklevoss twins. Gemini is a New York trust company regulated by the state’s Department of Financial Services. Gemini Managing Director of Operations Jeanine Hightower-Sellitto opined:
Raiz is advancing micro-investments via its new portfolio that provides customers an opportunity to invest in bitcoin in a thoughtful, regulated manner.
Ways to Invest and Portfolio Choices
In addition to the Sapphire portfolio, Raiz offers nine other exchange-traded funds (ETFs) with different asset allocations and risk profiles, ranging from conservative to aggressive. The ETFs are quoted on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX).
There are three ways investors can fund their Raiz investment account. The first is by making a lump sum deposit. The second is by using the Raiz app’s round-up feature, and the third is by setting up a recurring deposit daily, weekly, or monthly. The round-up feature allows investors to link various payment methods — such as bank account, credit card or debit card — to their Raiz accounts and then round up the change from every transaction. These round-up contributions are then transferred into their Raiz investment accounts manually or automatically for investment.
Sapphire aims to have 5% of its funds invested in bitcoin, with the remaining 95% comprising ETFs of U.S., Australian, European, and Asian large-cap stocks, and Australian corporate debt and money markets. “Raiz is not a trading tool, so Sapphire is a secure way to get bitcoin exposure without the complexities of trading,” the company claims. “With a target 5% asset allocation, the Sapphire portfolio provides investors a chance to reap the potential of bitcoin while limiting their exposure in a risk-adjusted way.” Nonetheless, due to the risks associated with cryptocurrency, “The minimum suggested investment timeframe [for the Sapphire portfolio] is more than five years,” the company recommends.
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