If you ever had a niggling thought that you wanted to give something more to the next generation than a few bucks or a toy that will be out of fashion by next year, this Stockpile review may provide you the answer you need.
Stockpile makes it easy to give the gift of stock to anyone. Just as you might buy a gift card for a loved one as a present, so too can you now the give the gift of shares of your favorite company, such as AutoZone, or Facebook.
In the old days, you might have needed to pony up a chunk of change to buy just one share of some high-priced stocks, like Amazon and Alphabet, but Stockpile makes it easy to buy smaller dollar amounts. For example, you can give a $20 or $50 gift card which the recipient can use to buy a fraction of a share.
But Stockpile is not limited as a platform to simply buy the gift of stock for other people. You can buy and sell shares in a brokerage account for yourself too just as you would at any other brokerage firm.
So, whether you want to own shares for your own account or you want to buy a gift that has the potential to keep giving back to the recipient far into the future, Stockpile is well worth your consideration.
Table of Contents
3.5 out of 5 stars
via Stockpile secure site
The Inspiration Behind Stockpile
Stockpile makes it as easy to buy a gift of stock as it is to buy a gift card to Walmart or Starbucks.
When Stockpile founder Avi Lele had the idea to give his nieces and nephews the gift of stock over the holiday season, he found the prices of two stocks he wanted to give, Apple and Google, were too pricey – a single share cost hundreds of dollars.
Plus, it was such a hassle to figure out how to buy stocks for kids because you needed to set up a brokerage account for them and you needed to know their social security numbers.
Avi simply gave up and bought toys for his nieces and nephews.
But he never gave up on the idea that buying stocks for loved ones should be easy, whether grandparents buying stock for grandchildren or parents giving kids the gift of stock as stocking stuffers to learn the value of investing for the long-term.
How Stockpile Works
When you buy a gift of stock for someone, you select a stock and a gift amount. The recipient then redeems the stock with a unique code and sets up a brokerage account.
To get started with Stockpile, the first step is to pick a stock you would like to give. You will be spoiled for choice because just about any stock you might buy in a standard brokerage account, you can buy as a gift.
Once you click on the online dashboard, your stock will pop up with a recent price chart, and you can simply choose the “Pick Stock” button.
We’ll use Netflix in the example below to highlight the process.
Next, you will be invited to select the gift amount, ranging from $25 to $100 – or you can enter an amount you wish to choose.
If you want to pick other stocks to give as gifts, you can do so easily too after picking your first stock, or you can simply complete the process where you simply enter the recipient’s email address as well as your own.
After you checkout with your credit card, debit card, or Paypal account, you’re set to go – you have just sent the gift of stock.
The next step for the recipient is just as easy. They can redeem stock as easily as they might redeem a gift card at a retail store.
The person who receives the gift will be asked to enter a unique code after clicking the “Redeem” button from the Stockpile home page, and simply follows the steps to enjoy the gift of stock you purchased for them.
The one ‘gotcha’ is the person redeeming the card must open a brokerage account with Stockpile.
What’s nice about the gift card is the recipient gets the full value of the stock. However, as the gift purchaser, you pay fees which vary depending on whether you buy an electronic gift card or a physical gift card.
Stockpile Fees: How Much Does It Cost?
The cheapest way to buy stock is for yourself in a brokerage account. If you purchase an e-gift card for someone else, it will cost a bit more and the most expensive gift card to purchase for someone is a physical gift card.
Stockpile isn’t limited to just buying stock for others as electronic and physical gifts. If you wish, you can buy stock for yourself as easily as you would do in any other brokerage account.
BUYING OR SELLING STOCK
If you want to buy stock for yourself, it will cost you $0.99 and you don’t have to buy whole shares, you can simply buy fractional shares.
So let’s say a stock is trading at $100 per share but you only want to buy $50 worth of stock, you can do so easily at a cost of $50.99.
If you don’t have enough cash in your account to make the purchase but instead want to use a credit card, you can do so but it will cost you more: $0.99 plus a 3% fee.
So, if you want to buy $50 worth of stock, it will cost you $50 + $0.99 + $1.50 for a total of $52.49.
Selling a stock will cost you $0.99 to transact also.
|Buying Stock with Cash||$0.99|
|Buying Stock with Credit Card||$0.99 + 3%|
GIVING AN E-GIFT OF STOCK
Purchasing gift cards for others at Stockpile is quite similar to buying gift cards for retail stores.
The first stock you give will cost $2.99 plus a 3% credit or debit card fee.
If you want to buy more than one stock, the credit/debit card fee will apply still, but the cost of buying each additional stock drops to $0.99 per stock.
Giving The Gift Of One Stock
So, let’s say your nephew loves athletic gear and you buy him the gift of $100 of Nike stock, the cost will be:
$100 + $2.99 + $3 (credit card/debit card fee) = $105.99
Giving The Gift Of An Additional Stock
Now, imagine you also give him the gift of $25 worth of Under Armor stock, the cost for that stock will be:
$25 + $0.99 + $0.75 = $26.74
But what happens if your nephew has a sister, and you want to buy stock for her too?
When you add more recipients to the same order, each stock you give them incurs a cost of $0.99 plus 3%.
So, if you give your niece $100 worth of AutoZone stock, you will pay:
$100 + $0.99 + $3.00 = $103.99
GIVING PHYSICAL GIFT CARDS
If you want to give a physical gift card, it will cost you a bit more than an e-gift will set you back.
The cost ranges from $4.95 to $7.95 depending on the amount you give. These charges cover the costs of credit card and debit card fees, trading commissions, and the cost of making the physical gift card, so your recipient gets to redeem the full value of their card.
|Gift Card Value||Cost To Purchase|
Stockpile Pros and Cons
Stockpile has low transaction costs to buy and sell stock for an individual account, no minimum balance thresholds or ongoing maintenance fees, and caters to physical and electronic gift cards of stock but the cost to give a physical gift card is steep and, unlike other brokerage firms, a limited range of securities and account types is supported.
|Stockpile Pros||Stockpile Cons|
|✅ Low Transaction Costs: It costs just $0.99 to buy or sell stock – unless you wish to purchase stock via credit or debit card in which case a 3% surcharge is added.||❌ Physical Gift Card Cost: To give a physical gift card can cost almost 14% of the value of the card. A $50 gift card would set you back $6.95 which is a hefty price to pay.|
|✅ No Minimum Account Balance: To get started, you don’t need to maintain a cash balance.||❌ Limited Securities: Stocks and ETFs can be purchased but options, futures, forex, and bonds are not available.|
|✅ Give The Gift Of Stock: To give the gift of stock ordinarily would require you to set up a brokerage account for someone and you would need their social security number. Stockpile makes it easy to bypass the hassle and still give a valuable gift for the long-term.||❌ Limited Account Selection: Taxable and custodial accounts are supported, but trust, partnership, joint, retirement or other accounts are not supported.|
|✅ e-Gifts and Physical Gifts: Whether you want to give a physical gift card or an e-gift card, both are supported – though the physical gift card will set you back more in fees.||❌ U.S. Residents: You must be a U.S. resident to be eligible to receive Stockpile gift cards.|
|✅ Fractional Shares: You don’t need to buy whole shares for gift recipients, but instead you can simply buy fractions of a share in $25, $50, $100 increments, or other denominations that you choose.|
|✅ No Ongoing Fees: Recipients are not charged maintenance fees that would erode the value of the gift as time goes by.|
Stockpile Securities & Account Types
Stockpile is a brokerage firm without bells and whistles. If you want to open a standard, taxable brokerage account to buy stocks and ETFs, Stockpile can do that for you.
You can also set up a custodial account for a child.
Although the platform options are limited to buy more exotic securities, Stockpile is a specialist in gift cards for stocks, and while it may not earn top marks as a brokerage firm overall, it wins 5-stars for its specialty area.
Stockpile Platform Features
(iOS & Android)
|Securities||Stocks & ETFs|
|Account Types||Taxable & Custodial|
|Customer Support||Phone & Email|
Stockpile makes it easy to give the gift of stock electronically or physically to adults and kids.
The cost to purchase a physical gift card is steep to cover the printing and credit/debit card costs but an e-card is a lot cheaper. Putting costs aside, the point of Stockpile is to make it easy to give a gift more valuable and meaningful over time than a toy that may go out of fashion quickly, and Stockpile excels in that aim.
Plus, if you want to buy stock for your own account, it’s quite cheap at just $0.99 to buy and sell stock (unless you want to use a credit card, in which case a 3% fee will apply).
If you are on the hunt for a brokerage firm with chart studies, research, tools, simulators, virtual trading platforms, options, futures, and forex, it is best to look elsewhere such as tastyworks or thinkorswim. But if you want to give a gift to someone that is more valuable over the long-term than a toy or material good, then Stockpile is an excellent choice.