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GENERAL QUESTIONS
How can I achieve my financial goals?

Simply follow the steps below:

  1. Tell us about yourself through our AutoWealth Platform.
  2. Review our recommended portfolio based on your risk profile and responses.
  3. Open an investment account with us. You can either do it online or meet our financial consultant.
  4. AutoWealth will then manage your investment portfolios, from portfolio constructing to periodic rebalancing, while you can sit back and track your accounts 24/7 to see your money grow.
How is AutoWealth different from other financial planners or DIY investors?

Compared to other DIY investors, investing through Autowealth has several benefits:

  • Better investment returns through AutoWealth’s "passive strategy". The well-established SPIVA Scorecard published by S&P Dow Jones Indices1 and other financial researches, found that 80-90% of active fund managers consistently underperforms compared to benchmark market returns over the short, medium and long term. At AutoWealth, we take a passive market-returns approach with no speculation so that you achieve better investment performance.
  • Lower fees. To robustly manage risk, it is generally better to diversify your investment portfolios and carry out some rebalancing from time to time. However, buying and selling each portfolio asset incur transaction costs. With AutoWealth, other than our 0.5% annual portfolio advisory fee on the assets under administration & US$18 annual platform fee, there are no additional charges for diversifying (all AutoWealth portfolios are automatically diversified across more than 8,000 stocks and more than 600 bonds) and rebalancing your investment portfolios. These are automatically carried out through our algorithm.
  • Access our team of professionals. With AutoWealth, you are not alone. Our team of wealth managers, with more than 30 years of financial experience collectively, is just one WhatsApp away.
  • Less time. You just need to help us understand your unique investor profile & financial circumstances while our algorithm carries out the portfolio execution and monitoring on your behalf. With AutoWealth, your precious time can now be free up for other important things in life (including seeing your wealth grow over time).
  • 24/7 portfolios monitoring. There is a limit to how long a person can monitor his/her investment portfolios. At AutoWealth, our algorithm monitors your investment portfolios 24/7.

Compared to other financial planners, investing through Autowealth has several benefits:

  • Better investment returns through AutoWealth’s "passive strategy". The well-established SPIVA Scorecard published by S&P Dow Jones Indices1 and other financial researches, found that 80-90% of active fund managers consistently underperforms compared to benchmark market returns over the short, medium and long term. At AutoWealth, we take a passive market-returns approach with no speculation so that you achieve better investment performance.
  • Lower fees. Many financial planners have multiple hidden fees, including commission, sales charges, etc, collectively making up 2-4% and adversely affecting your financial goals. At AutoWealth, you are only charged 0.5% annual portfolio advisory fee on the assets under administration & US$18 annual platform fee. This means that your hard-earned returns goes back into your pockets and you achieve your financial goals much faster.
  • Customized profile and investment portfolio. At AutoWealth, you enjoy robust investor profiling and our algorithm tailors and rebalances your investment portfolio according to your unique investor profile and financial circumstances.
  • Fine balance of technology and human. Every client matters greatly to us. At AutoWealth, each client is assigned a human wealth manager who is just one Whatsapp away, while most of your investment-related queries can be addressed through our technology platform that is available to you 24/7.
  • Consistency. When using traditional financial planners, you may be assigned to a different human financial planner from time to time when your financial planner moves on to another company. At AutoWealth, the algorithm that knows you is consistent.

For more details, you can visit this page .

1SPIVA Scorecard 2018: https://us.spindices.com/documents/spiva/spiva-us-year-end-2018.pdf

How is AutoWealth different from other robo-advisors?

We generally do not comment on other similar service providers. However, we can share that AutoWEalth has the following features:

  • Holds a Financial Advisor license from MAS (same license as AIA, Aviva etc).
  • Track record of 23 months – accepted our first batch of users in May 2016. Generated 12.8% returns, net of currency impact and fees, for our first batch of users (users that registered between May 2016 and March 2017) despite the corrections in Q1 2018.
  • Follows a pure market returns strategy with no “black box” discretionary elements. Proven by many well established studies to outperform 80 to 90% “black box” discretionary strategies over a short (5 years) to long (15 years) period.
  • Low fees regardless of investment amount. AutoWealth has a simple non-tiered fee structure of 0.5% of asset under management + US$18 platform fees per year.
  • All client assets are held in legally segregated Saxo (our partnering MNC custodian) custody account under their own name. In any bankruptcy situations, no one except the client, has any legal claims on the assets.
  • Each of our clients is assigned a wealth manager who is always one whatsapp away.

For more details, you can visit this page .


PROTECTION AND SECURITY
Is AutoWealth licensed or regulated by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS)?

Yes, AutoWealth has a Financial Advisors licence (Licence No.: FA100064-1) issued by the MAS and the company is regulated under the Financial Advisors Act.

How secure are my investment funds invested through AutoWealth?

In accordance with the Financial Advisors Act, AutoWealth clients’ monies and portfolio assets are held in a personal and segregated custody account at HSBC through Saxo Capital Markets, our partnering MAS-licensed financial institution that is regulated to provide custody services. This means that monies and portfolio assets legally belong to the client and are fully segregated from AutoWealth or Saxo Capital Market’s own monies and assets. Clients enjoy full protection against the insolvencies of both AutoWealth and Saxo Capital Markets.


KEY BENEFITS OF AUTOWEALTH
How will AutoWealth help me achieve my financial goals?

AutoWealth help clients achieve their financial goals in 3 simple steps:

  1. Clients tell the AutoWealth Platform information about themselves through a concise online questionnaire;
  2. Clients receive and review the recommended risk profile and corresponding investment portfolio tailored according to their responses;
  3. Clients decide and open an investment account with AutoWealth at their convenience;

Thereafter, AutoWealth manages clients’ investment portfolios, from portfolio construction to periodic rebalancing, while clients may access their investment accounts anywhere anytime 24/7 to see their investments grow over time.

What value does AutoWealth brings to me?

AutoWealth delivers significantly better returns than most mutual funds (unit trusts).

AutoWealth charges a fee as low as 1/4 that of mutual funds (unit trusts).

AutoWealth manages clients’ investment portfolio from end to end while clients sit back and enjoy.


INVESTING THROUGH AUTOWEALTH
What will I be investing in?

All AutoWealth investment portfolios feature a portfolio mix of Equity (Stocks) and Fixed Income (Govt Bonds), diversified across major geographical regions in the world including U.S., Europe and Asia Pacific and diversified across major industries including oil & gas, materials, industrials, consumer goods, health care, consumer services, telecommunications, utilities, financials & technology.

This means AutoWealth’s investment portfolios are generally more defensive against market turmoil and recessions than an investment portfolio that is concentrated in a particular asset class (eg. stocks) or geographical region (eg. Euro-Area) or industry (eg. technology).

AutoWealth achieves the strong diversification effect cost-efficiently through index-tracking Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs) listed on the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ.

How does AutoWealth select the Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs)?

AutoWealth has a rigorous process to screen over 6,000 ETFs listed globally and select the best ETFs based on factors including diversification effect, direct holdings of underlying Bonds or Stocks, reputation of the ETF provider, ETF fund size, liquidity and expense ratio amongst other factors.

Why AutoWealth does not invest in Commodities?

AutoWealth does not invest in Commodities due to the following:

  1. Unlike stocks which pay dividends and government bonds which pay coupons, commodities do not generate any yield at all
  2. As commodities do not generate any yield/cashflow, they are hence difficult to value. Therefore, commodities tend to have higher volatility (risk);
  3. Commodities trade in contango most of the time. Contango refers to a situation where the commodity’s futures prices are higher than the current spot price and investors lose value over time even though the commodity spot price remains unchanged over time. This downside is a common phenomenon due to the commodity’s storage/warehousing cost. For example, oil is stored in bunkers while precious metals like gold/silver are stored in bank vaults, thereby attracting storage/warehousing cost.

On balance, the downside outweighs the upside of a commodity’s diversification effect.

Why AutoWealth does not allow fractional shares?

AutoWealth does not allow fractional shares due to the following:

  1. The legal ownership of each unit of exchange-traded fund (ETF) is unclear because multiple owners own the same unit of ETF in a fractional share arrangement;
  2. A client’s assets and monies will be commingled with other clients in a fractional share arrangement;
  3. ETFs are traded over the stock exchange with a minimum trade size of 1 unit. When one investor seeks to sell his fractional share of the unit of ETF in a fractional share arrangement, other investor(s) may be forced to sell their fractional share due to the stock exchange’s minimum trade size of 1 unit.
How can I achieve better returns on my idle cash?

Idle cash earns little or zero yield. If you have no immediate need for your idle cash and wish to earn a better return, you may consider investing your idle cash through AutoWealth in 3 simple steps fully online:

  1. Plan your financial goals and evaluate your risk appetite by answering our concise online questionnaire on the AutoWealth Platform.
  2. Review your free investor profile and the recommended investment portfolio tailored to your unique investor profile & financial circumstances. Make any adjustments, if necessary.
  3. Start your investment account with AutoWealth either fully online or via a face-to-face appointment with one of our friendly wealth managers.

Depending on your risk profile and the corresponding investment portfolio recommendations, the projected1 long-term returns net of fees and currency impact is approximately 5% to 7% per annum.

1 The projections are derived through robust financial modelling based on the past performance of the portfolio assets since 2001 where global financial market data, including major emerging markets, were first readily available. Pls refer to FAQ “What is the investment performance I can expect?” for more details.

Note: Investments always carry risks. The market value of your assets and monies may fluctuate and result in economic gains and/or losses. Please consider having a reasonably long investment period to mitigate short-term market fluctuations.

How does AutoWealth compare with mutual funds (unit trusts)?

AutoWealth helps you achieve significantly better investment performance than mutual funds (unit trusts)with comparable asset allocation and risk. The well-established SPIVA Scorecard published by S&P DowJones Indices1 and other financial researches, found that 80-90% of active fund managers consistently underperforms compared to benchmark market returns over the short, medium and long term. At AutoWealth, we take a passive market-returns approach with no speculation so that you achieve better investment performance.

AutoWealth charges significantly lower fees than mutual funds (unit trusts). You only pay an annual 0.5% portfolio advisory fee on the assets under administration and an annual US$18 platform fee. Bid goodbye to expensive mutual funds (unit trusts) sales charge, admin fees, custody fees and withdrawal fees.

AutoWealth provides real-time 24/7 access to your investment portfolio with important market developments that you ought to be aware of, curated for you in simple layman English. Bid goodbye to mutual funds (unit trusts) quarterly reports and technical jargons.

1SPIVA Scorecard 2018: https://us.spindices.com/documents/spiva/spiva-us-year-end-2018.pdf

What is the investment performance I can expect?

Depending on your risk profile and the corresponding investment portfolio recommendations, the projected1 long-term returns net of fees and currency impact is approximately 5% to 7% per annum. The projections are derived through robust financial modelling based on the past performance of portfolio assets since 2001 where global financial market data including major emerging markets were first readily available.

You should note that the investment portfolio recommendations are intended to generate market returns over the medium to long-term and are not suitable for short-term speculation. You are welcomed to request a free financial consultation if you need financial advice for your unique financial circumstances.

1 Projections are based on robust financial modelling and past performance of portfolio assets. Although such projections are grounded on sound financial concepts, you should not assume that the future performance of portfolio assets or investment products referred to on the Platform will necessarily correspond to such projections.

Note: Investments always carry risks. The market value of your assets and monies may fluctuate and result in economic gains and/or losses.

Will I receive dividends investing through AutoWealth?

Yes, clients receive dividends on the Stock ETFs and bond coupons on the Govt Bond ETFs they have invested in through AutoWealth. Dividends/bond coupons will automatically be reinvested.

Will dividends be subject to U.S. federal withholding tax?

Yes, dividends and bond coupons will be subject to a 30% U.S. federal withholding tax in line with tax regulations of the U.S. Internal Revenue Service. Nevertheless, ETFs listed in the U.S. are still preferred over ETFs listed in other countries like the U.K. after taking into consideration factors including liquidity, bid-ask spread, expense ratio, ETF fund size amongst other factors.

AutoWealth works with our partnering custodian to seek partial reimbursement of the withholding taxes from the U.S. Internal Revenue Service, where applicable.

How long should I stay invested? Is there a lock-in period for investing through AutoWealth?

AutoWealth’s investment portfolios are intended to generate market returns over the medium to long-term and are not suitable for short-term speculation. Generally, AutoWealth advise clients to take a long investment horizon as far as is practical. Our investment strategy is designed to ride out an entire market cycle including any market downturn or recession.

Unlike some mutual funds (unit trusts) or hedge funds, AutoWealth has no lock-in period for investments. Clients are free to withdraw their investment funds or close the investment account anytime with no penalty cost.

Can I change my portfolio mix after starting the investments?

Yes, clients may request a review or change in portfolio mix through the AutoWealth platform.

What is rebalancing? How does it affect me?

Significant market movements may cause portfolio assets to deviate from their original intended allocation weightage. For example, the U.S.-China trade tensions in 1Q 2018 caused Emerging Market Stocks to decline materially and U.S. Government Bonds to rise materially causing an underweight in Emerging Market Stocks and an overweight in U.S. Government Bonds.

AutoWealth rebalances clients’ investment portfolios timely to realign the allocation weightage of portfolio assets for robust risk management and to maintain a consistent risk profile for all our clients.

Our portfolio rebalancing is supported by well-established research, including those documented in “Pioneering Portfolio Management [David F. Swensen, CIO of Yale Endowment Fund]”. The research concluded that threshold-based rebalancing statistically generates extra investment returns by exploiting excessive price volatility.

Can foreigners invest through AutoWealth?

Apart from U.S. citizens and residents, we accept all other foreign clients regardless whether they are residing in Singapore or overseas.

Can I invest through AutoWealth if the financial institution I work for prescribes a strict compliance pre-clearance process or guidelines governing my personal investments?

Yes, you will be glad to know that we have clients who work for financial institutions that prescribes strict compliance pre-clearance processes or guidelines governing personal investments.

AutoWealth can provide you with a Compliance Certification letter, which is addressed to your financial institution's compliance department. The letter will certify that AutoWealth takes a market-returns approach, your investment portfolio is constructed and administered on your behalf in accordance with our market-returns approach, and that AutoWealth does not accept orders to trade in specific securities on your instruction.


FEES & CHARGES
What are AutoWealth’s fees and charges?

AutoWealth charges a very competitive Advisory Fee of 0.50% per annum on the assets under advice and Platform Fee of US$18 per annum.

As an illustration, a typical client who invests S$10,000 pays about S$6.20/month in total fees and charges. In this example, AutoWealth’s fees and charges on a monthly basis is lower than a MacDonald’s Big Mac meal, although financial planning is far more important (no offence Macs, we still love you).

In contrast, mutual funds (unit trusts) typically charge about 2% in aggregate for sales charge, annual management fees, custody fees and other hidden fees and AutoWealth’s fees and charges are as low as 1/4 of these mutual funds (unit trusts).

Will I be charged a higher Platform Fee if I increase my investment amount or as my investment portfolio grows?

No, the Platform Fee of US$18 per annum is a flat fee regardless of the investment amount.

Do I have to pay any transaction, custody or other fees?

No, transaction and custody fees will be absorbed by AutoWealth.

Therefore, AutoWealth clients enjoy lower transaction and custody costs vis-à-vis DIY investors.

How are AutoWealth’s fees and charges collected?

AutoWealth Advisory Fees and Portfolio Fees are pro-rated and debited from clients’ investment accounts at the end of every calendar quarter. No action is required from clients.

When withdrawing in USD, will there be any additional fees?

When withdrawing in USD, AutoWealth does not impose additional fees.

However, as the beneficiary, you will receive your payment minus any applicable fees imposed by the correspondent (intermediary) bank and/or the receiving bank. As these fees may differ from bank to bank, please contact your bank representative directly for more details.

This does not apply to withdrawals in SGD.


MY INVESTMENT ACCOUNT
What is the minimum investment amount?

Clients can start investing through AutoWealth to achieve their financial goals with as little as S$3,000. Investors can now look forward to better investment performance, lower costs and a hassle-free experience.

How can I deposit funds into the investment account?

Clients may deposit funds into the investment accounts through:

  • Bank transfer
  • FAST transfer
  • Telegraphic transfer (subjected to your designated bank charges, if any)
  • Cheque

from a bank account opened in the client’s name.

In line with anti-money laundering laws and regulations, AutoWealth and our partnering MAS-licensed custodian do not accept third-party funding and will return funds received from any third-party accounts to the sender.

Can I invest using currencies other than Singapore Dollars?

Through the AutoWealth Platform, clients may deposit or withdraw funds in the following currencies:

  • Singapore dollars (SGD)
  • U.S. dollars (USD)

Clients may contact clientservices@autowealth.sg if they wish to deposit or withdraw funds in the following currencies:

  • Australian dollars (AUD)
  • British pounds (GBP)
  • Euro (EUR)
  • Hong Kong dollars (HKD)
  • Japanese yen (JPY)
  • Swiss francs (CHF)
Can I start a Regular Investment Plan (i.e. Dollar Cost Averaging)?

Clients who commit to a Regular Investment Plan would be able to Time-Diversify (i.e. Dollar Cost Average) their investments.

Clients can set a recurring monthly or quarterly funds transfer to the investment account via online banking services provided by their respective banks. The recommended date of transfer is the 1st or 12th of each month. Once the funds are received and booked, AutoWealth will invest the investment funds on the next available market day, or as soon as is practical.

Clients may refer to the following step-by-step instructions to set recurring monthly or quarterly funds transfer:

- DBS: https://www.autowealth.sg/dbsrecurring

- OCBC: https://www.autowealth.sg/ocbcrecurring

- UOB: https://www.autowealth.sg/uobrecurring

Can I withdraw my investment funds if I suddenly need the funds?

Yes, clients may login to the AutoWealth Platform anytime to submit the withdrawal request.

AutoWealth will facilitate the withdrawal of your portfolio cash balance and/or liquidation of your portfolio assets, in full or in part, whichever applicable, in the same available market day or as soon as practical for any withdrawal request made through the Platform on or before 5pm SIN/HK time. Barring any delay in the bank clearing process, due to public holidays or otherwise, you can expect the funds to be credited in your designated bank account in one week’s time. Please note full closure of the investment account may take up to two weeks.

There are no penalties for withdrawal of investment funds or full closure of the investment account.