Axos Managed Portfolios Review 2022: Pros, Cons and How It Compares

Axos Managed Portfolios offers inexpensive investment management, and allows more portfolio customization than most robo-advisors.

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Our Take

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

Reviewed in: Oct. 2022

Period considered: Aug. - Oct. 2022

The bottom line:

Axos Managed Portfolios stands out for the level of customization allowed by the service: The company allows investors to add or remove 32 investment types, including socially responsible investments.

Axos Managed Portfolios
Fees
0.24%
management fee
Account minimum
$500
Promotion
Get $200
when you open, fund, and make at least 2 trades in your Axos Managed Portfolios account.
Learn more

on Axos Invest's website

AD

Paid non-client promotion

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Low account management costs.

  • Customizable portfolios.

  • Goal-based planning tools.

Cons

  • Limited account selection.

Compare to Other Advisors

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Axos Managed Portfolios
Fidelity
Interactive Brokers IBKR Pro
Merrill Edge
TD Ameritrade
NerdWallet rating 

5.0

/5
NerdWallet rating 

5.0

/5
NerdWallet rating 

4.7

/5
NerdWallet rating 

5.0

/5

Fees

0.24%

management fee

Fees

$0

per trade for online U.S. stocks and ETFs

Fees

$0.005

per share; as low as $0.0005 with volume discounts

Fees

$0

per trade

Fees

$0

per trade

Account minimum

$500

Account minimum

$0

Account minimum

$0

Account minimum

$0

Account minimum

$0

Promotion

Get $200

when you open, fund, and make at least 2 trades in your Axos Managed Portfolios account.

Promotion

Get $150

when you open a new, eligible Fidelity account with $50 or more. Use code FIDELITY150. Limited time offer. Terms apply.

Promotion

Exclusive!

US resident opens a new IBKR Pro individual or joint account receives 0.25% rate reduction on margin loans. Tiers apply.

Promotion

Up to $600

when you invest in a new Merrill Edge® Self-Directed account.

Promotion

None

no promotion available at this time

AD

Paid non-client promotion

NerdWallet doesn’t invest its money with this provider, but they are our referral partner – so we get paid only if you click through and take a qualifying action (such as open an account with or provide your contact information to the provider). Most importantly, our reviews and ratings are objective and are never impacted by our partnerships. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here’s how we make money.

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Full Review

Where Axos Managed Portfolios investing shines

Inexpensive management: Axos Managed Portfolios charges a 0.24% management fee, which is relatively low, and offers more portfolio customization than most robo-advisors offer.

Customizable investments: The company asks each customer a few questions, then creates a portfolio of exchange-traded funds, weighted to reflect the amount of risk the investor is willing to accept.

Tax-loss harvesting: Tax-loss harvesting, an investment strategy that can help reduce taxes on your investment gains, is available to all Axos Managed Portfolios customers.

Where Axos Managed Portfolios falls short

Account selection: Axos Managed Portfolios customers can open only individual taxable accounts or traditional and Roth IRAs. Other robos and brokers also offer joint taxable and custodial accounts.


Axos Managed Portfolios is best for:

  • Beginner investors.

  • Goal-based investing.

  • Investors who want to customize their portfolios.

Axos Managed Portfolios at a glance

Reviewed: Oct. 2022

Period considered: Aug. - Oct. 2022

Account minimum

  • $0 account minimum but trading can’t start until balance reaches $500.

  • Any account under $500 is charged $1/month.

Account management fee

0.24%.

Investment expense ratios

Average 0.12%.

Account fees

  • $75 automated transfer out fee.

  • $50 per-plan termination fee on qualified accounts.

Portfolio mix

Portfolio mix is generally well-diversified but lacks significant exposure to international bonds. Portfolios are highly customizable for a robo-advisor.

Socially responsible portfolio option

Portfolio Plus feature lets you invest in particular sectors, such as Digital Security, or causes, such as companies with women in leadership roles.

Accounts supported

• Individual nonretirement accounts. • Roth and traditional IRAs.

Tax strategy

Tax-loss harvesting included on all accounts.

Automatic rebalancing

Automatic and free on all accounts.

Human advisor option

None.

Savings account/cash management account option

Its affiliate company, Axos Bank, offers savings accounts with competitive APYs.

Customer support options (includes how easy it is to find key details on the website)

Customer support is available Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Pacific time, by phone and email.

More details about Axos Managed Portfolios' ratings

Account minimum: 4 out of 5 stars

Axos doesn’t have an account minimum — you can open an account with any amount. However, trading can’t begin until your account balance is at $500. If your balance is below $500, you will pay a fee of $1 per month. Several competing robo-advisors have a $0 minimum and don’t charge for a $0 balance.

Account management fee: 4 out of 5 stars

A big draw of robo-advisors is that they offer financial advice and management for much less than a human financial advisor charges; about 0.25% to 0.5% of assets managed is typical. Axos squeaks under that range with its 0.24% management fee on accounts over $500. Yes, that 0.01% doesn’t make too much of a difference, but any money you don’t spend on management fees is money you get to keep.

Investment expense ratios: 4 out of 5 stars

Expense ratios are annual fees expressed as a percentage of your investment in a fund. The ratio varies depending on the robo-advisor. Axos Managed Portfolios has an average expense ratio of 0.12%.

Account fees: 3 out of 5 stars

Axos Managed Portfolios charges a $75 automated transfer out fee and a $50 per-plan termination fee on qualified accounts.

Portfolio mix: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Like many robo-advisors, Axos Managed Portfolios’ investment philosophy is based on modern portfolio theory. The company automatically creates a portfolio for each client by asking a few questions. Those questions lead to a “risk score” that helps build a recommended portfolio of exchange-traded funds, weighted to reflect the amount of risk the investor is willing to accept. The company says clients can increase or decrease their risk scores, and the investment recommendations will automatically update to reflect the change.

Axos Core Portfolios are similar to those of other robo-advisors. Funds cover U.S., international and emerging market equities; U.S. government and corporate bonds; short-term high-yield bonds; Treasury inflation-protected securities; and real estate investment trusts, or REITs. Many of the ETFs are from Vanguard and iShares.

Socially responsible portfolio options: 5 out of 5 stars

Investors who want to customize their portfolios can use the Portfolio Plus feature at no extra cost. Clients can add or remove 32 investment types and add investments by sector, such as digital security, consumer staples and socially minded companies. And while the level of added customization is a great middle ground for those investors who want more control than they'd get with a traditional robo-advisor but don’t want to choose all their own investments themselves, the company states that portfolios constructed from the additional investments available through Portfolio Plus are not recommendations of Axos.

Accounts supported: 2 out of 5 stars

Axos Managed Portfolios customers can open only individual taxable accounts or traditional and Roth IRAs. You can’t, for example, open a joint taxable account with your spouse, as you can at other robo-advisors and brokers, and you can't open a trust or a custodial account for your children.

Tax strategy: 4 out of 5 stars

Tax-loss harvesting is an investment strategy that involves selling losing investments to help reduce taxes on your investment gains. It’s available to all Axos Managed Portfolios customers.

Automatic rebalancing: 5 out of 5 stars

Axos Managed Portfolios monitors your portfolio and makes adjustments to keep your asset allocation aligned with your original choices. Customers receive automatic rebalancing for free.

Human advisor option: 1 out of 5 stars

Some robo-advisors offer human support, sometimes for an added fee. This isn’t a service Axos Managed Portfolios provides.

Savings account/cash management options: 5 out of 5 stars

Axos Managed Portfolios doesn’t offer a savings account or cash management options, but you can open a savings account with Axos Bank, its affiliate company.

Customer support options: 4 out of 5 stars

Customers have access to phone and email support Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Pacific time.

Other features you should know

Axos Managed Portfolios takes a goal-based approach to help investors create buckets for their money, called "milestones." Users tell the service their goal, time horizon, income and net worth, and Axos will calculate a recommendation for how much should be invested toward that milestone. Users can also adjust the recommended asset allocation for each milestone with a bar slider.

Is Axos Managed Portfolios right for you?

Axos Managed Portfolios is a solid choice for investors looking for low-cost management as well as some goal-based guidance. For investors who want more choice than a bare-bones robo-advisor offers, Axos makes it easy to dip your toes into choosing your own investments. Of course, as soon as you start choosing your own investments, you take on some of the responsibility that a robo-advisor would otherwise assume for you. Be sure to do your due diligence with any investments you pick.

How do we review robo-advisors?

NerdWallet’s comprehensive review process evaluates and ranks the largest U.S. robo-advisors. Our aim is to provide an independent assessment of providers to help arm you with information to make sound, informed judgements on which ones will best meet your needs. We adhere to strict guidelines for editorial integrity.

We collect data directly from providers through detailed questionnaires, and conduct first-hand testing and observation through provider demonstrations. The questionnaire answers, combined with demonstrations, interviews of personnel at the providers and our specialists’ hands-on research, fuel our proprietary assessment process that scores each provider’s performance across 16 factors. The final output produces star ratings from poor (one star) to excellent (five stars). Ratings are rounded to the nearest half-star.

For more details about the categories considered when rating robo-advisors and our process, read our full methodology.

on Axos Invest's website