acorns australia

How to invest your spare change with Acorns Australia

Information verified correct on October 25th, 2016

Turn your everyday change into an investment through a diversified portfolio roundup financial service.

Acorns Australia is a financial services provider that helps people invest their money through a simplified process that is connected to everyday life. It offers a unique way of investing in shares and fixed income securities by allocating it's virtual spare change to this micro-investing tool.

Acorns Australia is passionate about making it simple to invest from a young age, without having to save for years to acquire the necessary lump sum amounts.

Why should I invest with Acorns Australia?

There are many companies that make it possible to start investing from a young age without needing big lump sums. But, it's not every day that you find a product that does this by saving and investing your spare change. Acorns Australia will automatically save and invest your spare change into the mix of Exchange Traded Funds (ETF's) quoted on the ASX that you choose according to your own preference in portfolio's. Not only will the financial service invest your spare change, but it can also invest lump sums and recurring weekly or monthly amounts that you select.

Invest in your spare change with Acorns Australia

Save and invest in your spare change. Set an investment profile and Acorns Australia will do the rest.

To add to this, Dr. Harry Markowitz, who many call the father of “modern portfolio theory”, is a special adviser to the Investment Committee that constructs the Acorns investment Portfolios.

What are some of the benefits of using this financial service?

Three investing methods

You can use three different methods to invest money when using Acorns Australia. The first is a key benefit of using this financial service and is called Round-Ups. This approach invests the change of your daily purchases. Secondly, is the Recurring approach, where you can set daily, weekly, or monthly amounts that will allocate money to your investments on a recurring basis. Thirdly, you can use lump sums to boost your investments with bigger, once-off, capital amounts.

Personalised portfolio

Choose from 5 diversified portfolios constructed by industry experts under the guidance of Nobel-prize winning economist, Dr. Harry Markowitz. These portfolios consist of a mix of exchange traded funds (ETFs) quoted on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX), and are constructed to reach targets that speak to different financial goals and circumstances.

It’s a micro-investing platform

This type of platform makes it easy for everyday people to turn their everyday purchases into an investment tool. You can use this financial service for a small fee compared to bigger and more extensive platforms that charge high fees for unused features when it comes to micro-investor users.


Acorns Australia stores all your information on a remote server with bank-level security and data encryption. Your information won't be stored on your device and your funds are insured against fraudulent and criminal activity including cyber-crimes. Online accounts are protected by SSL encryption and multi-factor account authentication processes.

Flat-fee structure

There only flat fees charged according to the tier your monthly balance falls in. For accounts under AUD$5,000, there will be no account fee and only a maintenance fee of AUD$1.25. If your balance is equal to or exceeds AUD$5,000, you will pay not pay a maintenance fee for the month but an account fee of 0.275% p.a for that month.

You can withdraw and deposit money as you wish

There are no limits to a number of withdrawals and deposits you can make, and no fees for making them.

You can take advantage of fractional investing

One of the most powerful benefits of Acorns Australia is that you can allocate fractional interests in ETF Units to individual investors. This allows you open an Acorns Investment Account and invest in your personally selected, diversified portfolio, with only AUD$5.00.

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How does it work?

As mentioned above, Acorns Australia is a micro-investing tool. Its process is comprehensively explained on their website, but below is a simplified explanation after you have created an account with Acorns Australia (explained further on in the article):

1. Allocate money

You will need to allocate money to your account using one of the three methods detailed above in the article. The unique benefit of Acorns is that you can allocate your change from daily purchases to your account and it will be invested automatically. Round-ups mean that your transactions are rounded up to the nearest dollar and the actual change you would have had is now allocated to your account and will be invested.

2. Choose your portfolio

There are 5 diversified portfolios available that consist of a mix of exchange traded funds (ETFs) quoted on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX). These portfolios are constructed by an investment committee that is assisted by Nobel-prize winning economist, Dr. Harry Markowitz.

3. Invest your spare change

Acorns Australia has a unique algorithm that works to keep the funds in your account within the specified range allocated to the portfolio you choose. It balances the ETF's despite market fluctuations but requires you to agree to the automated procedure of rebalancing your account by re-investing the ETF's automatically. Any activity within your account, like withdrawals or deposits, will start corresponding transactions that work to automatically rebalance your account so that it stays within the target range of your chosen portfolio.

4. Withdraw or deposit at will

You can set your methods for investing money and also at any time withdraw or deposit money to add to your account.

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What fees will you pay to use the service?

The financial service offers a flat fee for usage. For accounts under AUD$5,000, there will be no account fee and only a maintenance fee of AUD$1.25. If your balance is equal to or exceeds AUD$5,000, you will pay not pay a maintenance fee for the month but an account fee of 0.275% p.a for that month.

As with any financial service, it is advised to study the fee structure (there is a comprehensive overview on the Acorns Australia website, under Product Disclosure Statement) to know the fees you can expect, for example, a dishonour fee.

What support can you expect from Acorns Australia?

The financial service offers dedicated support through email and will get back to you within 1-2 business days. You can also contact the team through Twitter.

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What are the pros and cons of using Acorns Australia for my next trade?

The pros

  • Unique method of capturing funds through rounding up purchases you already make
  • Portfolios are constructed with the help of a Nobel-prize winning economist
  • Offers a powerful micro-investing platform on the web and on mobile applications
  • Offers flat fees
  • Banking level security

The cons

  • Cannot build complex or big investment portfolio's as it is focused on micro-investing
  • Usual investment risks still apply
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This all sounds great, how do I get started with Acorns Australia?

  1. Click this link to download and register for the service (you can also click on "Get deal on site" above)
  2. Fill out your basic personal details and create passwords
  3. Link your debit or credit card for the Round-up feature
  4. Connect or create the funding account that will invest your allocated money
  5. Tell the financial service more about yourself for a better user experience

Do you have more questions? 

What is Acorns?

Acorns is a financial service, helping you to save and invest your money. The financial service enables Australians to start early, invest often, and reach their financial goals.

What do you need to get started?

After you’ve installed the free Acorns app, all you’ll need to start investing is:

Your online banking login information (which generates the round ups)

Your bank account and BSB number (where your money is pulled from)

Is there a minimum investment amount required to open an account?

No, Acorns has no minimum account balance requirement to open an account, but in order for you to start investing your funds into your chosen portfolio, your round-ups/lump sums must amount to more than $5. This is conveniently done through the round-ups process; each time you make a purchase, those rounds-ups accumulate towards the $5 threshold.

What happens if you delete the Acorns App from your device, or get a new phone?

Acorns operates in the cloud and your account and investments are safe even if you delete the app or get a new phone or device. Automatic round-ups and recurring deposits will still be processed even if the Acorns app is not currently installed.

Can you invest in individual stocks, bonds or other securities of my choice through Acorns, or opt out of some of Acorns’ investments?

You cannot opt out of any of the ETFs in Acorns’ portfolios, nor of the stocks or bonds of which the ETFs are comprised. You also do not have the option of choosing to invest in other stocks, bonds, or other securities or currency.

Is there risk involved in your investment?

Yes. The securities you own are subject to market fluctuations. This is why Acorns Australia advocates long-term investment goals. For more information about the investment methodology and risks associated with each investment please refer to the relevant sections of the PDS on the Acorns Australia website.

How does Acorns rebalance your portfolio?

Acorns automatically rebalances your portfolio as you invest. Every time you deposit or withdraw funds, we adjust the proportions of ETFs purchased to move your account towards its target portfolio allocation.

They also periodically review, typically on a quarterly basis, and rebalance your portfolio whenever the percentage holding of one or more ETFs fluctuates 5% above or below its target allocation. Acorns sell overrepresented ETFs and use the proceeds to buy underrepresented ETFs to bring your portfolio towards its target allocation.

Rebalancing also occurs whenever you request to change your portfolio. They adjust the allocation of each fund to match the new risk profile. Acorns sells overrepresented ETFs and use the proceeds to buy underrepresented ETFs to bring your portfolio in line with its new target allocation. This rebalancing occurs within a few business days of a portfolio change request.

How often do you earn dividends and distributions?

The seven ETFs that make up your portfolio pay dividends and distributions on varying schedules – for more detailed information on the ETFs and their dividend schedules please refer to the prospectus of each individual ETF, which will be found on their websites.

How long does it take to transfer funds into your Acorns account?

It will take 1-3 business days for funds transferred to your Acorns account to become available to invest. These funds will be shown as “pending” during this time period.

Is there a limit to how much money you can deposit at one time?

Yes. There is currently a daily deposit limit of $10,000.

Is there a limit to how much you can withdraw at one time?

No. You can withdraw any amount from your balance at any time.

I received a NSF (non-sufficient funds) or fee on my bank account because of Acorns! Can you reimburse me for this?

Acorns remind all customers to always make sure that their account has the proper funds before committing to an investment in the app. If, for any reason, investments made by you (or because of a setting which you configured in the app) are charged back due to non-sufficient funds or cause a fee on your account, Acorns will not be responsible for any of these fees charged to you by your bank.

Why does Acorns need your bank login information?

You can monitor your spending through the app, allowing you to spot investment opportunities. To access this you’ll need to provide your online banking login information. However, this information is not stored and is not viewable by Acorns- it’s simply used to import your spending activity. This will not enable money to be transferred from your bank account.

How does Acorns make money?

Acorns is completely free to download. Once an account is opened, there are no fees on $0 balances and after that they only charge $1.25 per month for accounts with a balance under $5,000 and 0.275% per year (charged monthly, computed daily), for accounts with a balance of $5,000 and over. For more information on fees, including the Fee Estimator, please visit the PDS on the Acorns Australia website.

Where does the round-up money come from?

Round-up funds come from the funding account that you connect as a funding source for Acorns. If you connect multiple bank accounts, credit or debit cards, then all of your round-ups will still come from only the connected funding account. This funding account is also the account that funds are sent back to when a withdrawal is requested. For example, if you spend $3.50 using your credit card then that $.50 will eventually come out of your funding account when the round-ups add up to at least $5.

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