Invest, borrow, and spend, all in one place. With combined investing, borrowing, and cash management in one easy-to-use automated platform, you can manage your money as you see fit. M1 uses fractional shares and intelligent automation to invest your money according to your target allocations, so you can capture your money’s full potential.
How you make money
The main way to earn is by using M1 smarter investing, which helps you earn returns through stock price appreciation and dividends. You can customize your own portfolio or choose from over 80 preset models. You can diversify easier with fractional shares and automate your portfolio with recurring buys and dynamic rebalancing. M1 also allows you to trade on a margin of 35% of your portfolio with a fee of 3.5%, or 2% if you have Plus.
M1 also has a debit card and checking account. The earning abilities of these kick in when you sign up for Plus. With the upgraded feature, you can earn a 1% APY on your checking account plus 1% cashback on debit transactions.
How M1 makes money
M1 Finance makes money in several ways even though they do not charge management fees or commissions.
- Rebates from market makers and trading venues: Market makers (typically big institutions/funds) buy directly through the brokers to have discounted purchases. For that ability, the market makers pay a rebate to the brokerage to receive their orders. The brokerage sends your orders to the market maker that is most likely to execute at the best price for you and makes a few cents on each trade.
- Income generated from cash: They borrow the cash sitting in your account and invest it into interest-earning accounts and keep the profit.
- Stock loan income from counterparties: They receive interest for loaning out shares for short sales.
- Margin Lending: M1 earns interest on margin loans (2%-3.5%).
- Paid Subscription: M1 offers a Plus membership for $125 per year
- Debit card: M1 receives money through card transactions
Is it safe?
M1 is a technology-first company that utilizes the latest in information security. It is essential that they are a trustworthy partner. Their CEO values openness and honesty, and that transparency shines into every aspect of the M1 business and products. Their reliability can be seen through the over 500,000 accounts created and over 20,000 five-star reviews. Securities in M1 Invest accounts are insured up to $500,000 by the SIPC. M1 Spend checking accounts may be insured up to $250,000 by FDIC insurance.