Artificial Intelligence

Betterment’s launches tool to optimize cash savings

  • Millennials have 30 percent of their money in savings.
  • Betterment wants its users to make more money on their cash.
Betterment’s launches tool to optimize cash savings

Automated investment advisor, Betterment is rolling out “Two-Way Sweep”, a tool that can automatically “sweep” excess money from customers’ bank accounts into a Betterment account optimized to provide better returns for cash.

What’s behind this new product: Studies show that only one in three millennials is investing in the stock market. That means they’re holding a high percentage of cash. In fact, Betterment sees 30 percent of customers with cash balances of $20,000 on average. This excess in savings earns little to no interest. Betterment’s Two-Way Sweep is intended to take the hesitation out of deploying more money into investments by automating the process.

How it works: Customers can configure Betterment to monitor their monthly spending. The company’s algorithms scan for daily surplus funds in customer checking accounts and automatically sweep excess cash into a Smart Saver account. Smart Saver, launched in August, is a money market account that uses investments in short-term bonds to potentially earn higher returns on cash while still being relatively liquid.

Automating savings is first step to investing: People have a hard time conducting financial tasks. Modern financial apps like Digit, Acorns, and Qapital have made saving as easy as swiping right. With this new product, Betterment has taken the thinking out of savings and investing by automating it. This is the future of autonomous finance.

“We always believed there should be an automated way to make more of idle cash, not only telling you how much money should go into what accounts and towards what bills, but actually performing the task without you even having to move a finger,” said Mike Reust, CTO of Betterment.

“With the launch of Two-Way Sweep, we’re showcasing that automation can help make nuanced day-to-day decisions easy and stress-free so people can focus on their broader financial goals.”

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