Kapitall

Brokerage Review: Kapitall


by

12 June,2012

There is no shortage of brokerages out there. If you are looking for something simple and laid back, though, you might consider using Kapitall to manage your portfolio. I first came in contact with Kapitall because I know one of the co-founders, David Neubert. I started a while back, when Kapitall was just a portfolio building site, meant mainly for experimentation.

Now, though, it’s possible to trade using Kapitall. Kapitall Generation, LLC is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Kapitall, and a brokerage that allows you to buy and sell stocks. If you are interested in stock trading in a visually pleasing environment, and if you want access to great analytical tools and some of the latest news, Kapitall might not be a bad place to go.

Drag and Drop Portfolio Creation

One of the features of Kapitall is the drag and drop portfolio creation. First of all, it’s free to create sample portfolios, and do research on stocks. You can open an account and get started. A tool palette on the left of the screen opens up, and you can drag and drop the companies or indices you are interested in (represented by an icon with the company logo) into the palette. Immediately, you get the information you want, including:

  • Charts
  • Company information (employees, dividends, etc.)
  • Company financials
  • Dividend information

You can overlay this information on charts to see who it all contributes to the overall picture of the company. It’s also possible to use Kapitall’s tools to compare more than one company or index. It’s also possible to find similar companies to give you a better idea of how the company ranks in its sector, or to provide you with additional investing ideas.

Through it all, you can use your mouse to drag and drop in order to assemble a portfolio. You can see how that portfolio performs, and then decide what to do in real life. If you download the Kapitall app to a mobile device, the same thing is accomplished with a swipe. Interestingly enough, this easy to use portfolio building feature is available from Kapitall Generation, the brokerage associated with Kapitall. This makes trading as easy as drag and drop (or swipe), and the attractive visuals take out a lot of the mental fatigue that comes with combing through lists of investment options. It’s one of the most attractive online brokerages available.

Your access to the latest news, information, and comparisons can help you make more informed decisions. There is also a ticker that runs at the bottom of Kapitall to keep you up to the minute on the market, and you can see the latest news as it becomes available.

Fees

It’s free to open an account, and there are no minimums. There are no maintenance fees, or account inactivity fees. Indeed, Kapitall fees are fairly straightforward. Since Kapitall is mostly about stock trading, you won’t find many complicated options and fees at the site. The online commission for a trade is $7.95 per trade. If you do call in and engage in a broker assisted trade, you will have a higher fee of $30. There is no fee for ACH transfers in or out of your account (although you will pay a $35 fee for returned ACH). Wire transfers, though, come with a $30 fee.

For the most part, as long as you are willing to trade paper free, there are very few fees. Some of the paper related fees you can expect to pay include:

  • Stock certificate fee: $80
  • Paper statement: $5
  • Tax documents by mail/fax: $5
  • Check request: $20 (you will also pay fees for overnight delivery)
  • Paper confirmation: $5

It’s also worth knowing that you can fill out an ACAT form to transfer your account from another broker to Kapitall. You won’t be charged a fee for bringing a new account over (well, the other broker might charge you), but you will be charged a $50 fee if you decide to move your account away to another broker.

Opening an Account

If you want to open an account, it’s fairly straightforward. To begin experimenting on the “playground” at Kapitall, you just need to create a login using your name and other innocuous information. If you want to start trading for real using a Kapitall Generation account, you will need a little more information. You need to choose a security question, as well as whether or not you want to open an individual account or a joint account. You will need to include personal information, such as your date of birth, citizen status, and Social Security Number. Your legal address is used as well, and employment information.

If you plan to fund your account, you will need to provide bank account information, including account number and routing number, so that an ACH transfer can be made. Creating an account and getting going is fairly simple, you can rest assured that Kapital Generation is a member FINRA/SIPC. The process does require several pages to complete, but it’s not too bad.

For those who have questions, they offer live chat. This is a helpful feature that is available anytime. There is even a live chat option at the top of your window when you are in the playground, or other areas of the site. You can go right to the chat as needed.

One of the great things about Kapitall is the promotions. During May, all trades were discounted to $5 apiece. During June, Kapitall is running a “Happy Hour” promotion. Every day on Twitter, Kapitall will announce an hour of commission-free trading. The announcement will go out five minutes ahead of time, and if you are paying attention, you will be able to take advantage.

Bottom Line

Kapitall is for stock traders. The offerings are rather limited: Stocks and certain funds. You can trade quickly and easily, due to the intuitive and attractive interface. If you are looking for a fun and easy way to trade stocks, they can be a good choice, especially if you pay attention to the promotions.