Do you remember what it was like to have no cares in the world. Just make good grades in school and play all day long outside in the sun. I know we all didn’t have great childhoods, but that’s how mine was and investing was no where on my radar. I got an allowance as a teenager for doing household chores and worked at a fast food restaurant in the summers of my junior and senior years in high school. My parents never thought me about money and the only lesson I received was to give 10% to God. After that I could do whatever I wanted to with the money I earned. I wish I could invest like that today. I wish I could just set my asset allocation and then have my portfolio rebalance yearly and not worry about a thing.
I wish I could blindly follow my investment plan and let the compounding do its thing.
If this is what roboadvisors can offer, I honestly don’t see a problem with that. Will it put some financial advisors out of a job? yes. I think the only thing that a roboadvisor will not be able to help investors with is tax planning strategies and maybe assigning assets to the appropriate tax advantage accounts. The only reason is because our tax laws keep changing and you need someone that is going to keep up with the current tax code. Besides tax planning roboadvisors would also be bad at retirement planning. They will not be able to help investors navigate long term care insurance policies or advise them on how much retirement income they will receive from social security. It would not be good on advising them on if they would benefit from an annuity, what asset allocation would be best for them in retirement or how to tackle RMD when and if they got there.
The final thing that a robo advisor would not be able to do is talk investors out of bailing out of the market during a stock market crash. You will need a real life advisor for that. Roboadvisors are great for wealth preservation and simple portfolio management. For all those that are not finance enthusiast or DIY investors, roboadvisors offer a very low cost approach to wealth management, if you can stay the course; and sometimes the best way to stay the course is to not even think about or worry about what is going on in the market. Just invest through the eyes of your children. They have not a care in the world.