5 Greatest Robo-Advisors With Tax-Loss Harvesting

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Tax-loss harvesting is a phenomenal factor. At its most straightforward, it is an funding technique the place you promote an funding at a loss with the aim of decreasing your capital positive factors tax invoice. That is potential to do by yourself, with a monetary advisor, or with a robo-advisor.

Automated tax-loss harvesting with the assistance of a robo-advisor is without doubt one of the best methods to reap the benefits of this money-smart, utterly authorized investing technique.

Right here, we’ll speak about a few of the finest robo-advisors that provide tax-loss harvesting and provide you with suggestions for selecting the correct automated funding account.

Greatest Robo-Advisors With Tax-Loss Harvesting at a Look

Wealthfront — Greatest for Targets-Primarily based Investing

Wealthfront Logo


  • Low administration charge
  • $500 account minimal
  • Each day tax-loss harvesting
  • Extremely customizable portfolios
  • Vast number of funding sorts and asset classes


  • Customer support falls brief with no reside chat possibility and cellphone assist restricted to weekday enterprise hours

Greatest For: Newbie and intermediate traders who will reap the benefits of goal-planning instruments and progress-tracking options

Not Superb For: Traders who wish to maintain fractional shares in an automatic account

Charges: 0.25% advisory charge

Wealthfront does loads of issues proper as a robo-advisor and stands out from the remainder of the pack for its rigorous method to determining and aligning together with your monetary targets. It is also among the best for traders who wish to customise their asset allocation and even create a portfolio from scratch. However you do not have to do that, because the curated portfolios are terrific. Select the Basic Portfolio, Socially Accountable portfolio, or Direct Indexing portfolio.

Should you’re in search of a robo-advisor that may assist you meet your targets whereas providing superior advantages like tax-loss harvesting, Wealthfront might be a very good match. This is a superb alternative whether or not you are investing for the primary time or have just a few years behind you.

Learn our full overview.

Betterment — Greatest for Inexperienced persons

Betterment Logo


  • Low annual administration charge
  • No account minimal to get began
  • 12 distinctive portfolio choices to select from
  • Vast number of funding sorts and asset classes (together with crypto and fractional shares)


  • Third-party charges for crypto investing
  • Should make a month-to-month deposit of $250 or extra or have a steadiness of at the least $20,000 to modify to annual fairly than month-to-month pricing

Greatest For: Inexperienced persons and traders who wish to have much less hands-on involvement

Not Superb For: DIY traders who wish to select and handle their investments themselves

Charges: 0.25% annual administration charge for many portfolios (or $4 a month), 1% for crypto portfolios (plus buying and selling bills)

Betterment is a strong robo-advisor throughout, however we predict newcomers and traders preferring to only sit again and depart their portfolios alone ought to admire it most. This robo-advisor makes it simple to get arrange, customise your investing, after which loosen up. And with 12 completely different portfolios to choose from together with stand-out choices like social impression and local weather impression portfolios, 4 several types of crypto portfolios, and plenty of extra conventional ones, you possibly can really feel like your investments are aligned together with your priorities.

Do not select Betterment in order for you full management over your investments, however do select this robo-advisor if you wish to let automation do the heavy-lifting.

Learn our full overview.

Empower — Greatest for Internet Value Monitoring

Private Capital is now Empower


  • Entry to human advisors
  • Wealth administration instruments and options
  • Provides particular person securities


  • Increased administration charge than many different robo advisors
  • Very excessive $100,000 account minimal for wealth administration

Greatest For: Traders with a number of retirement funding accounts who need full wealth administration assist together with human advisory companies

Not Superb For: Model-new traders who haven’t began saving for retirement

Charges: 0.49% to 0.89% annual administration charge

Should you’ve began specializing in rising your internet value and also you need a platform with monetary planning options, Empower might be the robo-advisor for you. This robo-advisor emphasizes retirement investing and strategizing. And the Empower platform is extra complete than the typical robo-advisor with instruments for planning, budgeting, advising, and extra. Plus, you may get human advising, which is much less frequent for automated accounts.

Though beginner-friendly, Empower is probably not the most suitable choice for many who haven’t began saving for retirement as a result of a lot of its built-in instruments — together with a Retirement Planner, Payment Analyzer, Financial savings Planner, and many others. — hyperlink with these accounts. To reap the benefits of Empower, you wish to sync as many accounts as potential.

Learn our article: “I’ve Used Empower for 9 Years: What I Love & What May Enhance

>>> Discover out extra: Internet Value Trackers: 7 Greatest Apps & Monitoring Providers

Schwab Clever Portfolios — Greatest Payment-Free

Charles Schwab wide logo


  • No annual administration charges
  • Elective human advisory companies (for a charge)


  • Excessive $5,000 account minimal
  • Restricted funding sorts with no socially accountable portfolio possibility

Greatest For: Traders who need human advising and people seeking to save on their investing

Not Superb For: Traders in search of a highly-customizable robo-advisor, traders with much less cash to take a position

Charges: No annual administration charges, $300 setup charge and $30 a month after that for limitless entry to a licensed monetary planner (non-obligatory)

Schwab Clever Portfolios does not cost administration charges, making it one among few robo-advisors that may be really free. You can even pay for human advisory companies from a CFP.

However there are some downsides to this cheap platform. First, a taxable funding account must have a steadiness of at the least $50,000 to qualify for automated tax-loss harvesting with Schwab Clever Portfolios. That is larger than most robo-advisors. Additionally, there are solely three completely different funding methods obtainable with Schwab — World, U.S.-focused, and Earnings Centered — making this selection extra restricted than others when it comes to diversification too.

Learn our full overview.

Axos Make investments — Greatest for Self-Directed Buying and selling

Axos wide logo


  • Low annual administration charges
  • $500 account minimal
  • Over 30 completely different asset courses


  • No fractional shares or bonds

Greatest For: Traders who wish to take the reigns whereas customizing their portfolios to decide on the property they need

Not Superb For: New traders who would like to have their portfolio constructed for them

Charges: 0.24% advisory charge

Axos Financial institution presents nice Managed Portfolios for traders who need tax-loss harvesting at a good cheaper price level than a few of its least expensive rivals, Betterment and Wealthfront. With a administration charge of 0.24% and greater than 30 completely different asset courses, plus the flexibility to decide on these asset courses for your self and their allocations, this selection is properly value it.

Within the background, Axos displays your portfolio and sells your investments at losses whereas changing them with comparable investments to scale back your tax invoice. And this platform comes with extra advantages like the choice to exclude ETFs to keep away from triggering the wash sale rule. There aren’t any extra charges for tax-loss harvesting — that is included in your administration charge.

Learn our full overview.

How To Select a Robo-Advisor for Tax-Loss Harvesting

There are loads of issues to contemplate when selecting a robo-advisor. That can assist you get began, listed below are a few of the most essential options to concentrate to.


No robo-advisor is really free. Although a lot of them have far fewer charges than the typical monetary advisor and brokerage account, all of them cost numerous charges together with annual charges and typically month-to-month charges. Look into consideration administration charges whereas evaluating your choices.

>>> Discover out extra: The Precise Price of Robo Advisors Charges — What Are the Annual Charges?

Funding Choices

The purpose of a robo-advisor is that you do not have to manually decide your investments and rebalance your portfolio, however this works finest when paired with quite a lot of funding choices. Select a platform that gives a mixture of property for higher diversification.

Should you’re okay with simply investing in ETFs, shares, and bonds, most robo-advisors will work. However should you’re interested by different property like REITs and crypto, you could have fewer decisions.

Portfolio Varieties

Your exact asset allocation goes to be decided by your threat tolerance and the way you reply setup questions when creating your account, however one of many greatest variations between robo-advisors is of their portfolios. No two platforms are precisely the identical.

Take into consideration your preferrred funding portfolio when selecting a robo-advisor. Does it embody a well-diversified mixture of conventional investments? Shares in socially accountable or sustainable corporations? Shares of cutting-edge property like digital foreign money or tokens? See which preset portfolios can be found earlier than signing as much as make investments.


Most robo-advisors will let you be utterly hands-off together with your investing and can do all the rebalancing and reinvesting for you. Some traders like this whereas others need extra management.

If you wish to keep some degree of involvement, select a robo-advisor that enables for self-direction. If you wish to be concerned as little as potential, select one with nice customization and automatic options.


All robo-advisors have completely different minimal deposit and steadiness necessities to maintain an account. Select one primarily based on how a lot money you need to make investments. You will see minimums of $0 for some whereas others require you to make investments $10,000 or extra to get began.


It is at all times good to look right into a robo-advisor’s historic returns earlier than signing up. Though you possibly can’t inform for positive how your portfolio might carry out by taking a look at efficiency knowledge, this can be a good technique to simply examine platforms. 


Some robo-advisors include skilled advisory companies constructed into the fee or the choice to buy these. If that is essential to you, go for a robo-advisor with extra wealth administration options.

Usually, corporations both supply a robo-advisor alone (or principally alone, like Betterment) or complete investing companies that may embody a robo-advisor (like Schwab).

>>> Discover out extra: Understanding Monetary Advisor Charges

What Is Tax-Loss Harvesting?

Tax-loss harvesting is a tax-efficient investing technique that includes promoting off property at a loss with the aim of decreasing your present tax burden. By promoting some investments at a loss fairly than hanging on to them, you possibly can offset your taxable positive factors from different investments and reduce your general tax legal responsibility.

Traders might ultimately purchase again the identical property, change them with comparable choices, or transfer on to different alternatives.

With tax-loss harvesting, you might be able to scale back your taxable earnings and decrease your invoice. Typically, this implies a smaller capital achieve to pay taxes on or perhaps a internet loss, relying on the remainder of your portfolio’s efficiency.

You’ll be able to carry ahead losses to an upcoming tax yr should you exceed the utmost allowable internet loss in any given yr. In 2023, that is $3,000.

Observe: Tax-loss harvesting defers taxes. You will nonetheless have to pay taxes on any investments that result in capital positive factors sooner or later.


Say you could have $20,000 invested in a single ETF (we’ll name it ETF A) and $15,000 invested in one other (ETF B). ETF A has depreciated in worth and is now value $18,000 whereas ETF B has appreciated in worth and is now value $20,000.

ETF A: $20,000 —> $18,000 (-$2,000)
ETF B: $15,000 —> $20,000 (+$5,000)

Should you had been to solely promote ETF B, you’d pay taxes on a realized capital achieve of $5,000. However should you had been to promote each ETFs, the $2,000 capital loss might assist offset the $5,000 achieve and also you’d solely pay taxes on a $3,000 capital achieve. 

Lengthy- and Quick-Time period Positive aspects

You’ll be able to offset long-term capital positive factors with long-term capital losses and short-term capital positive factors with short-term capital losses. Quick-term positive factors consequence from gross sales of property you held for lower than a yr and long-term positive factors consequence from gross sales of property you held for at the least a yr.

Quick-term capital positive factors are taxed on the identical fee as your extraordinary earnings and long-term positive factors are taxed at between 0% and 20%.

>>> Discover out extra: What Are the Capital Positive aspects Tax Brackets?

Which Investments Qualify?

Tax-loss harvesting solely works with taxable accounts. This implies tax-advantaged funding accounts reminiscent of 401(ok)s and IRAs aren’t eligible. This is smart if you consider it as a result of these accounts already carry tax advantages — investments right into a 401(ok) scale back your taxable earnings and funds in an IRA develop tax-deferred.

Taxable accounts that may be eligible for tax-loss harvesting embody brokerage accounts and robo-advisor funding accounts. You’ll be able to apply tax-loss harvesting methods to:

  • ETFs
  • Shares
  • Mutual funds
  • Crypto

Limitations of Tax-Loss Harvesting

There will likely be instances when tax-loss harvesting simply does not work or make loads of sense. And there is additionally a restrict on how a lot it can save you utilizing this technique.

For instance, tax-loss harvesting does not make sense if you are going to spend extra money executing the trades than you possibly can presumably save. If you cannot reduce your tax invoice by sufficient to simply make up for buying and selling charges, do not do it.

It additionally is not a very good technique for traders who’ve purpose to consider they’re going to earn the next earnings subsequent yr. Should you get ran into the next tax bracket after utilizing tax-loss harvesting, you would really find yourself paying extra taxes in your capital positive factors sooner or later. Yikes.

Additionally, you possibly can solely declare as much as $3,000 per yr in capital losses as a single particular person or $1,500 per particular person should you’re married.


There are different methods to scale back your capital positive factors tax burden apart from harvesting losses. You can even lower your tax legal responsibility by investing extra for retirement, holding onto investments to defer taxes, and selecting dividend shares to gather earnings with out having to promote.

>>> Discover out extra: Learn how to Offset Capital Positive aspects Tax on Your Investments

Wash Sale Rule

You may be questioning: Can you purchase an funding again after you have offered it at a loss to offset capital positive factors? The reply is sure. However you could have to concentrate on the wash sale rule.

The wash sale rule is a rule created by the IRS to forestall traders from being shady about chopping their tax payments by “gaming the system.” Principally, you are not presupposed to promote an funding to scale back the capital positive factors taxes you owe after which flip round and purchase virtually the very same funding immediately. That is known as a wash sale and it is frowned upon.

A wash sale happens while you promote an funding for a loss and buy the identical or a “considerably an identical” funding inside 30 days of the sale, earlier than or after.

Should you set off the wash sale rule, you possibly can’t use the loss that triggered it to offset your positive factors.

So how do you keep away from breaking this rule (and forfeiting the tax advantages)? Simply wait lengthy sufficient to switch investments. So long as you are outdoors of that 30-day window, you are effective. The perfect robo-advisors use safeguards to keep away from wash gross sales.

Tax-loss harvesting itself is permitted by the IRS, however there may be positively a proper means and a improper technique to do it. Do it proper and it can save you some cash; no hurt, no foul. Do it improper and you will not get the tax financial savings.

Monetary Advisors vs. Robo-Advisors vs. Neither: What is the Greatest Possibility?

You do not want a robo-advisor to make use of tax-loss harvesting funding methods. There are methods to do that by yourself and plenty of conventional monetary advisors help with this.

However it’s quite a bit simpler and cheaper to have an algorithm to do it for you, and plenty of robo-advisors have the capability to do that extra often than a human would.

A conventional monetary advisor would probably let you know to attend till the top of the yr or near it to begin tax-loss harvesting. It is because this can be a good alternative to rebalance your portfolio and you will have a transparent image of your wins and losses for the tax yr.

However robo-advisors usually apply tax-loss harvesting strategies day by day or at the least on a way more common foundation. It is simpler and quicker for an algorithm to search out alternatives to reap losses than for an individual, and these platforms use computerized rebalancing to repeatedly modify your portfolio.

>>> Discover out extra: Robo Advisor vs. Monetary Advisor

Backside Line

Tax-loss harvesting generally is a improbable technique to scale back your tax invoice, however it may be a bit difficult and time-consuming to tug off by yourself. Recruiting a robo-advisor to do that be just right for you is a worthwhile determination for many traders, particularly since these platforms supply many different advantages too like decrease charges, nice diversification, and low-maintenance investing.

Take a look at one among these robo-advisors to begin saving in your taxable funding accounts with common tax-loss harvesting.

InvestorJunkie receives money compensation from Wealthfront Advisers LLC (“Wealthfront Advisers”) for every new shopper that applies for a Wealthfront Automated Investing Account via our hyperlinks. This creates an incentive that leads to a fabric battle of curiosity. InvestorJunkie just isn’t a Wealthfront Advisers shopper, and this can be a paid endorsement. Extra data is offered by way of our hyperlinks to Wealthfront Advisers.

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