SoFi (which stands for Social Finance) also known as SoFi Invest is an online personal finance company.
This platform was founded in 2011 by business school students and was initially created as a financial solution for student loans.
The company headquarters is based in San Francisco.
Cryptocurrency isn’t their main feature, in fact, they offer options for all types of personal finance services (including savings, loans, mortgages, credit cards, and more).
Their program SoFi Invest was introduced in 2019 due to a number of requests received from their users.
There are around 30 cryptocurrencies supported on this exchange (with only 5 coins being available in New York, including Bitcoin (BTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Ethereum (ETH), Ethereum Classic (ETC), and Litecoin (LTC)).
The company prides itself on being a multi-investment platform. In fact, they state on their website ‘All-in-one investing’ and ‘Trade stocks and ETFs, invest in IPOs at IPO prices, or try automated investing. Plus, start trading crypto’.
Here are a few services that they offer; Active Investing (where users can trade stocks and ETFs at no commissions), Crypto (where users can trade Bitcoin, Ethereum, Cardano, and around 20 other coins), Automated Investing (where users can get help and support with their investments), and Retirement Accounts (where users can save for their retirement).
Let’s investigate and see how traders can get the most out of the SoFi exchange.
Is SoFi Exchange Limited To Expert Traders?
SoFi exchange is meant for all types of users and mostly for investors wishing to keep track of their investments all in one place.
It is really diversified thanks to the various services that they offer.
Their aim was to provide their customers with tools to access their financial independence and freedom.
They mentioned that ‘[Their] number one goal is helping [their] members get their money right’. Available products include:
- Loans: Student Loan Refinancing, Medical Resident Refinancing, Private Student Loans, Undergraduate Student Loans, Mortgage Refinancing, and more.
- Investing (Stocks): Active Investing, Automated Investing, Fractional Shares, IPO Investing, ETFs, and others.
- Credit Card
- Insurance: Auto Insurance, Life Insurance, Renters Insurance, and more.
- Insight: With Credit Score Monitoring, Budgeting and Spending, Property Tracking, and more.
- Business Solutions: SoFi at work and Small Business Financing.
SoFi exchange is a great platform for traders interested in multiple financial investments.
Regarding the crypto space, there are only a very few features available. Traders can only buy or sell crypto assets.
It can be really interesting for beginners as there is a lot of educational content within the SoFi Learn section.
Users can consult articles such as How to invest in Bitcoin, Understanding the different types of cryptocurrency, How does a crypto exchange work, and more.
SoFi Pros & Cons
|Multiple investments supported (Crypto, Stocks, Fractional shares, ETFs, and IPO)||Only available in the United States|
|Receive 10 dollars when you start trading cryptocurrencies||They do not offer a wallet (Traders cannot send their crypto assets from an external wallet to their SoFi account and vice versa)|
|2 Factor-Authentication security||Only 30 cryptocurrencies available|
|Only 1.25% fee for trading cryptocurrencies||New York residents can only buy 5 cryptocurrencies out of the 30 supported on the platform. (Due to the agreement SoFi currently has with New York).|
|Free financial counseling||Limited trading options|
Our Take On SoFi
Trading at SoFi isn’t really appropriate for experienced traders, as mentioned earlier, there are only a few options available on the platform.
Also, the fact that there isn’t the possibility to transfer your crypto assets out of SoFi exchange can be an issue.
On the other hand, SoFi is a very diversified, interesting and beginner-friendly platform for traders wishing to manage all their investments in one place, it also gives users more control of their money.
SoFi offers the possibility to accompany and simplify traders’ investments with Free Financial Counselling, and Automated Investing, but also with their complete FAQ and articles.
With that being said, traders interested in both stocks and cryptocurrency would love trading at SoFi.
The fee set by SoFi exchange for trading cryptocurrencies is 1.25%.
They offer a very competitive price compared to other crypto exchanges.
Traders can make one-time deposits or set recurring deposits to invest regularly and on an automated basis.
Is SoFi Safe?
SoFi having offered finance and banking services for years, since 2011, is an insured and regulated platform in the United States.
This is one of the reasons why traders trust this platform with their crypto investments.
They have put several measures in place to secure their users’ investments and details.
‘SoFi Invest is a secure platform that ensures your holdings are protected against fraud and theft’.
Here are the tools used to secure their platform:
- two-factor authentication
- SSL encryption (which means Secure Sockets Layer, a tool setting an encrypted link between a server and a user)
They also have a trusted partner, Coinbase exchange, for completing transactions on their exchange.
SoFi exchange isn’t specialized in cryptocurrency, therefore, they do not offer trading options other than buying and selling crypto assets.
There is a possibility to purchase up to 30 cryptocurrencies.
However, users cannot transfer their assets out of SoFi exchange.
This is one of the reasons why this exchange is more appropriate for novices who wish to start investing smoothly and easily.
As mentioned earlier there are also lots of educational content that is ideal for beginners.
Nonetheless, they do offer some interesting features such as IPO investing which has been launched recently (still mentioned as ‘new’ on their website).
IPOs are Initial Public Offering, ‘Investors can get allocated shares before they start trading on the public stock market’.
They also offer Stocks Investments, Fractional Shares (which means investing on a portion of a share), Margin trading for stocks, and ETFs Investments (Exchange-traded funds, a group of different companies representing a sector).
Finally, users have the option to use their Automated Investing service which is meant to simplify investments and make them stress-free.
Banking At SoFi
SoFi mentioned that they do not charge fees when users transfer money into their accounts.
They state ‘However, for Active Invest brokerage accounts, there is a $75 outgoing ACAT fee should you decide to transfer your account to another broker. It is also possible that other firms may charge an ACAT fee. If you transfer over a brokerage account using the SoFi ACAT system, SoFi will cover up to $75 of any ACAT Outgoing Fees you may incur from your current brokerage firm as long as the transfer is for $5,000 or more.’
In that case, users will have the possibility to request a refund by emailing [email protected] once their transfer is complete.
SoFi App Experience
Their mobile app SoFi – Invest, Trade, Borrow, can be downloaded on Google Play (for Android) and on the App Store (for IOS).
Their mobile app is similar to their website, they have different sections in their menu with the services that they offer. These include money, credit card, invest, and loans.
As seen earlier, they offer more than just cryptocurrency services, therefore, users will have to find the crypto option in the ‘collections’ section to start buying or selling their assets.
They will also have the possibility to consult a watchlist of unsupported coins (for information purposes).
Navigating through their mobile app is smooth and easy as the vocabulary used is simple to understand and it is really straightforward to find what you are looking for.
SoFi Site Experience
SoFi website is as user-friendly and easy as the mobile app to use. Although, users will have access to more content with their articles and FAQ.
The fact that SoFi offers various services can, however, be overwhelming for its users.
On the other hand, as mentioned before, SoFi is too limited in terms of trading options for professional traders, there are only 30 cryptocurrency assets, traders cannot transfer their coins, and most importantly they can only buy or sell crypto at present.
Signing up for SoFi exchange is quick and easy, users will need to choose a type of account first.
Then, they will be required to fill in their personal details (including their full name, date of birth, nationality, state, employment, email address, and other details) and to generate a password.
Finally, they will need to verify their identity by uploading their ID document.
It can then take between a couple of minutes to a couple of days for an account to be verified.
SoFi Global Restrictions
SoFi exchange is only available in the United States at present.
However, New York currently undergoes some restrictions, their citizens can only buy 5 of their cryptocurrency assets including Bitcoin (BTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Ethereum (ETH), Ethereum Classic (ETC), and Litecoin (LTC).
SoFi Customer Service
SoFi’s customer service team is available by phone or chat (via Chat with invest support).
Users will have to choose the right phone number depending on their needs amongst checking and savings, personal loans, student loans, invest, and more.
The right section for cryptocurrency investors will be Invest Support. Below are their opening times:
Monday to Thursday: 5 am – 5 pm PT
Friday: 5 am – 4 pm PT
Closed on Saturday and Sunday
The customer support team can also be contacted on Twitter via their account @SoFiSupport.