Like so many other industries, investing has been profoundly transformed by the Internet.
The digital age offers new and convenient ways to research different markets, buy and sell stocks or make other types of investments.
Unlike many other old-economy dinosaurs that were deeply affected by the digital revolution and could not adapt to the new reality, traditional, full-service brokerage firms have not disappeared from the market.
However, as the world becomes increasingly computerized, more people prefer the advantages that the digital economy offers.
Modern-day platforms offer greater degrees of convenience, control and flexibility, including faster transaction speeds, lower or non-existent fees, time-saving applications, valuable and easy-to-access financial data, sophisticated analysis capabilities, advanced technological tools and other meaningful benefits.
Every transaction can be made from practically anywhere in the world, without ever meeting or calling a broker or leaving the comfort of your living room.
Real-time reporting enables you to see how your money is performing throughout the day, week, month and year. Moreover, you can closely track profits and losses.
Online trading platforms and other investment management websites attract a wide range of market participants—from individual beginners and everyday people with moderate experience to highly active day traders, private and institutional investors and other financial professionals.
Traditional vs Alternative Investments
There are many legitimate and varied reasons to consider investing: building wealth and growing your money over time, saving for retirement, getting higher returns (compared to just holding money in a savings account), meeting personal goals, benefitting from tax incentives, taking control of your financial future and many others.
In the investment world, there are two primary ways to have your assets work for you: conventional and alternative channels.
Mainstream online trading services enable individuals to monitor and invest in a variety of traditional financial instruments, such as the following:
- Mutual Funds
- Bonds and CDs
- Retirement and IRAs
On the other hand, alternative investment options include the following (and others):
- Real estate (physical assets, crowdfunding, etc.)
- Peer-to-peer lending (P2P)
- Fine art, wine and other collectibles
- Starting your own or investing in someone else’s online business
- Gold, silver and other precious metals
- Venture capital / angel investing
- Intellectual property
- Private equity
- Hedge funds
Investing with PayPal
Funding a typical online brokerage account requires transferring money electronically from your checking or savings account, usually by an ACH bank transfer or wire transfer.
This process of making a deposit is not immediate and may take a few days to a week.
Some investment companies offer additional options for transferring funds into your account that include checks and, in some cases, even PayPal.
Many PayPal users have accumulated substantial amounts of money in their e-wallet account and wish to use these funds for investment purposes.
Obviously, the ability to invest your PayPal cash online is something many users are probably interested in.
Since so many people in the U.S. and around the world use this service for sending and receiving payments and for buying almost anything over the Internet, it only makes sense that this payment method could also be used for investing – at least from the average user’s perspective.
At this point, the number of trading platforms and other investment companies that accept PayPal is small; however, due to the extraordinary popularity of this peer-to-peer (P2P) payment system and the potential demand from investors, more commercial players may join the list in the future.