Best Sources for Investment Advice

With a bit of research, you can gather a wealth of knowledge using traditional and new-age sources.

Investors can glean good advice everywhere from old-school newsletters to new-age Twitter feeds. Sources we like best are chock full of market data and history to buttress market opinion, but are engaging and accessible to ordinary investors at the same time.

Best Stock Market Letter

InvesTech Research (four-issue trial, $39), which promises "safety-first profits," has bested the overall stock market over the long haul with less risk. Publisher James Stack analyzes economic, monetary and market data (some going back more than 100 years) to make market calls and recommend allocations.

Economist and strategist Ed Yardeni, head of Yardeni Research, provides sophisticated yet accessible analysis of unfolding economic, political and market-related developments in Dr. Ed's Blog. Subjects range from company earnings to the Federal Reserve to analysis of stock, bond and other markets.

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Bespoke Investment Group, a research and money management firm, helps investors sift through the market morass by sending out tweets stuffed with charts, graphs and tables that give plenty of context for the day’s market and economic news.

For conservative investors: Schwab Intelligent Portfolios offer advice that will appeal to the risk-averse. In our test of online advisers, Schwab prescribed a relatively modest 65% allocation to stocks for a 25-year-old investor with an average tolerance for risk. The minimum investment is $5,000, and Schwab doesn’t charge a management fee (see Is a Robo Adviser Right for You?).

For investors just starting out: Betterment and Wealthfront have low minimum requirements. On assets of less than $10,000, Betterment charges 0.35% per year; Wealthfront is free.

For investors with more-complex finances: Vanguard's Personal Advisory Services has a $50,000 minimum, but you get access to a certified financial planner who not only manages your portfolio but also offers comprehensive financial-planning advice. The service costs 0.30% of assets under management.

Anne Kates Smith
Executive Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance

Anne Kates Smith brings Wall Street to Main Street, with decades of experience covering investments and personal finance for real people trying to navigate fast-changing markets, preserve financial security or plan for the future. She oversees the magazine's investing coverage,  authors Kiplinger’s biannual stock-market outlooks and writes the "Your Mind and Your Money" column, a take on behavioral finance and how investors can get out of their own way. Smith began her journalism career as a writer and columnist for USA Today. Prior to joining Kiplinger, she was a senior editor at U.S. News & World Report and a contributing columnist for TheStreet. Smith is a graduate of St. John's College in Annapolis, Md., the third-oldest college in America.