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Anyone Know the skinny on Personal Capital?
Old 05-15-2015, 12:58 PM   #1
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Anyone Know the skinny on Personal Capital?

I'm always leery--make that downright skeptical--of people wanting to help me with my money and who claim to be unbiased and only want to see me do better.

This company is located in Redwood City, CA the reps are pushing me to let them have a look at my retirement accounts in the hopes that their expertise will help me make better choices.

Do any of my fellow posters know of, or have had dealings with, this company? I would appreciate your comments. Once again, THANKS!!! --prof12
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Old 05-15-2015, 01:21 PM   #2
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I use their service and their great iPad app to monitor my spending and investments all in one place with cool graphs and reports. I ignore their bi-monthly phone calls and they stopped emailing me once I told them once that I wasn't interested in an advisor.
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Old 05-15-2015, 01:45 PM   #3
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I signed up and entered my portfolio. I have ignored the incessant phone calls and e-mails for their "free look-see". They really want to charge you money for assets under management. I see no reason to pay something for something like that.

If you want someone to manage your money, there are cheaper places including something as simple as a LifeStrategy fund at Vanguard.
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Anyone Know the skinny on Personal Capital?
Old 05-15-2015, 02:30 PM   #4
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Anyone Know the skinny on Personal Capital?

Myself and DW have the app on our iPads.

I like the 'all in one' look at credit card billing and consolidation of investment accounts - which otherwise can get to be a bit spread out between multiple accounts. DW always complains 'she doesn't know what is going on' - so she has access the personal capital account and can monitor balances on a daily / trade by trade / tick by tick basis if so desired.

If the truth be known, I doubt if DW has looked at it once since installation but at least now I can say she has all the information at her fingertips.

I get an email every once in a while from their rep. I just reply they would 'advise' me to get off margin and go into index funds and that I'm not interested in either, thank you very much.

If I had any concern, it would be that sensitive info like credit card numbers, account numbers and account balances are stored on the site and thus subject to being 'hacked'. The security on my iPad is strong enough - not so sure about Personal Capital's servers.
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Old 05-15-2015, 02:48 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wingfooted View Post
I get an email every once in a while from their rep. I just reply they would 'advise' me to get off margin and go into index funds and that I'm not interested in either, thank you very much.

If I had any concern, it would be that sensitive info like credit card numbers, account numbers and account balances are stored on the site and this subject to being 'hacked'. The security on my iPad is strong enough - not so sure about Personal Capital's servers.
I do have a bit of worry about the second part, but I keep random passwords at all my banks/financial institutes and can change them on a whim, and all of them require some other two-factor form of identity with the computer so that mitigates it a bit.

To the first: I'm sure they would tell you to get off margin. Anecdotally, I am not so sure they'd steer you towards index funds. On Bogleheads, I've read a couple of folks who said their advice was to shift to more actively-managed funds that diversified across and within asset classes. The bottom line seemed to be an attempt to recreate a relatively simple three-fund portfolio (Total US Stock/Total US Bond/Total Int'l Stock) except using more like nine individual funds and even tilting a little bit depending on risk tolerance. Of course, they're going to charge you to set it up and maintain it all... but I didn't get the sense they were "indexers" per se. In fact, when I responded that I was a DIY "boglehead" via email about a year ago, they stopped emailing altogether. Now I just get a voice mail on my cell phone about once every two months which I just delete.
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Old 05-15-2015, 06:43 PM   #6
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I'd just ignore the efforts to get you to use their advisor. You could also try Mint or if you're only interested in your investments as opposed to credits cards, checking accounts, budgeting, etc. SigFig works quite well.
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