Jon Stein | How Betterment Pioneered the Robo-Advisor
The Founder Hour
Jon Stein is the founder and chairman of Betterment, the largest independent online financial advisor in the U.S. with over $22 billion of assets under management. Founded in 2008 during the global financial crisis, Betterment is one of the pioneers in the robo-advisory industry, using computer algorithms to generate personalized advice and manage investment portfolios.We spoke with Jon about his upbringing and what he was interested in as a kid, his passion for writing and why he loves it so much, deciding to forgo a medical career after college and working on Wall Street, how the idea for Betterment came about, why he decided to step down as CEO in late 2020, and what he’s up to now. We also settle a highly debated issue and a question we were dying to ask Jon - is it finance or FINance?Tune in to find out!SUBSCRIBE TO OUR NEWSLETTER & STAY UPDATED > http://bit.ly/tfh-newsletterFOLLOW TFH ON INSTAGRAM > http://www.instagram.com/thefounderhourFOLLOW TFH ON TWITTER > http://www.twitter.com/thefounderhourINTERESTED IN BECOMING A SPONSOR? EMAIL US > firstname.lastname@example.org
Jon Stein is the CEO and founder of Betterment. Passionate about making life better, and with his experience from his career of advising banks and brokers on risk and products, he founded Betterment in 2008. Betterment manages over $21B in assets. Jon is a graduate of Harvard University and Columbia Business School. His interests lie at the intersection of behavior, psychology, and economics. What excites him most about his work is making everyday activities and products more efficient, accessible, and easy to use. Betterment saves people time and money and empowers them to reach their important goals faster.
Jon Stein: 'Free Trading Is Actually Going to Cost You'
The Long View
Our guest this week is Jonathan Stein, the founder and chief executive of Betterment. Stein founded Betterment in 2008 as an automated, goals-based investing service, and it's currently the largest of the independent robo-advisors. Betterment offers two main services--Betterment Digital, which is a pure robo-advisor, and Betterment Premium, which offers clients ongoing financial planning guidance from a Certified Financial Planner. Stein began his career consulting with banks and brokerage firms on risk and products. He's a graduate of Harvard University and Columbia Business School and holds the Chartered Financial Analyst designation. BackgroundJonathan Stein bio Betterment.com"Betterment: Jon Stein," How I Built This with Guy Raz, Oct. 26, 2018. "Jonathan Stein Built Betterment to Help Investors Make Better Decisions," by Bruce Rogers, Forbes.com, Jan. 18, 2018.The Coronavirus and Investor Behavior"Thoughts on the Volatile Market," by Jon Stein, Betterment.com, March 19, 2020."COVID-19's Impact on Investor Sentiment," Betterment.com, May 6, 2020."How Betterment's Customers Are Behaving Amid the Volatility," by Caleb Silver, Investopedia.com, April 10, 2020. "Betterment Halted Trade Amid Brexit Panic--Here's Why," by Anora Mahmudova, MarketWatch, July 1, 2016. "Coronavirus Turmoil, Free Trades Draw Newbies Into Stock Market," by Alexander Osipovich and Caitlin McCabe, The Wall Street Journal, April 29, 2020. "Americans Are Hoarding Cash: Savings Rate Hits Its Highest Level Since 1981," by Paul R. La Monica, CNN.com, April 30, 2020. Betterment's Offerings and Investment ProcessBetterment Digital vs. Premium Betterment's Cash Analysis Methodology "Are Robo-Advisors Better Than Target-Date Funds?," by Arielle O'Shea, NerdWallet. Betterment for Business"How Tax Impact Preview Works to Help Avoid Surprises," by Boris Khentov, Betterment.com, Oct. 29, 2014. "ETF Selection for Portfolio Construction: A Methodology," by Adam Grealish, Betterment.com, Aug. 27, 2014. "Value Investing: Research on the Risk and Return," by Adam Grealish, Betterment.com, Oct. 25, 2016.Future of Advice"The Fiduciary Rule Should Be Fully Implemented," by Jon Stein, Betterment.com, June 8, 2017."Will New SEC Regulations Change Anything for Retail Investors?" by Theresa W. Carey, Investopedia.com, June 8, 2019. "The Future of Advice: Jon Stein, Betterment," March 6, 2017. “Betterment Paints It Black in Robo-Retail," by Oisin Breen, RIABiz.com, Aug. 5, 2019.
How I Built Resilience: Live with Tobias Lütke and Jon Stein
How I Built This with Guy Raz
When Tobias Lütke started Shopify, he wanted to empower merchants to start small and build resilience. Tobi spoke with Guy about the relevance of those principles in 2020, as he explains the rise of Shopify sign-ups during the pandemic. Jon Stein spoke with Guy about starting Betterment in the wake of the 2008 recession, and why this economic downturn could be the perfect time to start a company. These conversations are excerpts from our How I Built Resilience series, where Guy talks online with founders and entrepreneurs about how they're navigating these turbulent times.
You're the product: Betterment CEO Jon Stein on smart money managers
Newsflash: By 2022, about $4.6 trillion will be managed by roboadvisors—super smart algorithms telling you when and what to invest. But can we trust the robots? Betterment CEO Jon Stein thinks yes—but there are limitations.This week on Business Casual, Stein explains 1) why computers make better money managers than Uncle Rob’s neighbor’s sister 2) where the big banks like Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley are failing everyday people and 3) why good advice typically has a price tag. He also masterfully tackles the democratization of financial tools in under five minutes (could be a world record).And because he was feeling generous, Stein clues you in on the single worst thing you can do with your money.Sign up for Morning Brew here: https://www.morningbrew.com/?utm_source=Podcast&utm_medium=Podcast&utm_campaign=Podcast-Episode2
Bloomberg Opinion columnist Barry Ritholtz interviews Jon Stein, founder and chief executive officer of Betterment, the U.S.'s largest independent online financial adviser. Prior to founding the firm, which has over $16 billion in assets under management, Stein spent years as a Wall Street consultant. He studied economics at Harvard University and finance at Columbia Business School, and is a CFA charterholder.
On this episode Jon Stein stops by to discuss his lifetime infatuation with power pop and Jon and Howard both hail praise for the superlative guitar solo that makes up 50% of the song My Sharona.Spotify Playlist of songs referenced or played on the episode:https://open.spotify.com/user/x5228znb6j0817tdq7otw61fi/playlist/0Q4b7wmG3P84rK7Fn7yJHT?si=ZT70nOVaTvuO4695XqXv0AiTunes/Apple Podcasts: https://podcasts.apple.com/ca/podcast/gateway-music/id1456290890Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Gatewaymusicpodcast/
Jon Stein: From Launching In An Economic Downturn To Managing $15 Billion
Jon Stein is the cofounder of online investment advisor Betterment. One of the first FinTech companies, and a startup that launched in the pit of the 2008 financial crisis. Betterment has landed $275 million in funding. Investors include Fabrice Grinda, FJ Labs, Andy Dunn, Menlo Ventures, and Bessemer, as well as large family offices with patient capital.
Seth Stevenson talks to Betterment CEO Jon Stein about the democratization of financial services. In the interview, Stein talks about the role he feels financial companies should play in treating investors fairly, about Betterment’s preparedness for a potential market crash, and his thoughts about offering so-called alternative investments – like maritime debt and weather futures – to the everyday saver. This episode is brought to you by Merrill Lynch. Get started today at ML.com/you. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices