Investing can be a tricky and overwhelming endeavor, especially for those who are just starting out.

Public is one of the more well-known investment apps and it caters to new investors or investors who just want simplicity. For instance, it allows users to invest with fractional shares without commission fees or account minimums.

In this Public app review, we’ll take an in-depth look at the features offered by Public so you can decide if it’s right for your investment portfolio.

We’ll discuss how easy it is to set up and manage accounts on the platform, customer support services available from Public, and some pros and cons of using their service for investing.

Pros and Cons of Using the Public App for Investing

As we know by now, Public is an online investing platform that offers a range of features and benefits to help investors manage their portfolios. Public also has no fees for most things investors need to do, making it an attractive option for those looking to save money on investment costs.

Additionally, the platform is easy to use, with intuitive tools and resources available for novice investors.

  • Low fees compared to other platforms. The company charges no commissions or account maintenance fees, allowing users to keep more of their investment returns.

  • Allows you to invest in stocks, ETFs, and crypto—all in one place.

  • Fractional shares. You can buy fractional shares of stock, which means you don’t have to have enough for a full share.

  • The platform provides a variety of educational materials. This includes tutorials and videos, which can help you understand how best to invest your money using the Public investment app.

  • Easy-to-use app. I found the Public platform to be intuitive and easy to navigate. I would think that even the most novice Public users would be able to figure it out very quickly.

  • Limited investment types. While your Public account will offer a wide selection of stocks, ETFs (exchange-traded funds), and even crypto, it does not support mutual funds or other types of investments like bonds, commodities, or other alternative assets. This may limit your options when building out your portfolio over the long run.

  • Limited account types. Unlike many competitors, Public only offers taxable/individual brokerage accounts. This means Public doesn’t offer accounts such as retirement or joint accounts.

  • No tax-loss harvesting. Tax-loss harvesting—a strategy used by many investors—is not supported by Public either, so you will need another way to reduce capital gains taxes if applicable.

  • Public Premium. Currently, $10 a month for Public Premium isn’t worth it. Yes, you get access to cool features like advanced data, unique market metrics, and analyst insights, but much of this is free online if you know where to look.

Overview of Public

Public is an investment platform allowing users to manage their investments and build a diversified portfolio easily. It provides access to stocks, ETFs, mutual funds, and other types of investments all in one place. The app also offers features such as automatic deposits, recurring investing, and automated dividend reinvesting.

It’s low costs and fractional share investments mean it’s easy to get started for new investors.

What is Public?

Public is an online investing platform designed for people who want to take control of their financial future without having to pay high fees or invest large amounts of money. With Public’s easy-to-use interface and low cost structure, anyone can get started investing in the stock market quickly and easily.

From the beginning, Public has focused on making it easier for anyone to be better investors in individual stocks, regardless of their current wealth or investing experience. You’re able to build a variety of stocks, bonds, ETFs, crypto, and alternative assets such as art and collectibles. There are also future plans to offer even more assets, with potential cash-flow-producing additions like music royalties and real estate.

Features & Benefits

Public offers a variety of features that make it easier for users to manage their investments, including:

  • Automatic deposits into your account regularly
  • Recurring investing allowing you to automate your strategy
  • Stock, crypto, and ETF data allowing you to take a deeper look into the companies you invest in
  • Commission-free trading
  • Access to fractional shares so you can buy any stock regardless of its price
  • Automated dividend reinvesting letting you automatically compound over time

Additionally, all accounts are SIPC insured up to 500K for US listed securities and up to $250k for cash amounts per user, so you know your money is safe even if something happens to the company itself. Note that SIPC insurance doesn’t mean that you are protected from market losses. It means that you won’t lose your money if Public goes bankrupt.

Fees & Charges

Public does not charge US-listed stocks and ETFs fees during regular market hours (which is 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. EST).

However, if you want to upgrade to a Public Premium subscription (more on this below), that’ll set you back $10/mo.

However, additional costs may be associated with certain services depending on the service or how often they are used. In addition, there may be charges related to transferring assets out of the platform should you decide not to use it anymore in the future.

Public is a great option for those looking to accelerate their investment portfolio and offers many features, benefits, fees, and charges. Now let’s look at how you can invest with Public.

Investing with Public

Public is an online investment platform that offers users a wide range of investment options. With the Public investing app, you can invest in the stock market, ETFs, and more.

The Public app also supports investment strategies such as dollar-cost averaging and portfolio rebalancing. Additionally, it provides risk management tools to help investors make informed decisions about their investments.

Types of Investments Available

The Public app offers a variety of investments for its users, including stocks, ETFs, alternative assets, mutual funds, and other asset classes like bonds and commodities. All of these offer different advantages depending on your goals and risk tolerance but could have their place in a well-diversified portfolio.

In addition to these options, Public has added another investment type to its lineup: Treasury bills. Treasury bills, also called T-bills, are short-term debt securities backed by the full faith and credit of the U.S. government. They present very little risk to investors and earn steady, fixed returns. As of February 2023, 26-week Treasury bills earn 5.0% when held to maturity, which is quite a bit better than most high-yield savings accounts. You need at least $100 to invest and will pay a flat management fee of .05% on your balance every month.

You can easily search for the assets you want to invest in on the platform’s intuitive interface or use one of the pre-built portfolios available on the site if you don’t know where to start investing.

Investment Strategies Supported

Public allows users to take advantage of several different investment strategies, such as dollar-cost averaging and portfolio rebalancing.

  • Dollar-cost averaging involves investing a fixed amount at regular intervals over time which helps reduce volatility by reducing exposure when markets are down while increasing exposure when markets are up.
  • Portfolio rebalancing is another strategy supported by Public that involves periodically adjusting your asset allocation based on market conditions or changes in your financial goals so that your portfolio remains balanced according to your desired risk profile.

Investing with Public provides a wide range of options and tools to help you build your retirement portfolio. Now let’s look at how easy it is to set up and manage an account with Public.

Public Premium Subscription

Public Premium is Public’s premium membership tier and costs $10 a month. Here, you can access advanced data, portfolio management tools, and analyst insights. As a perk, Morningstar provides institutional-grade research, while Public provides bull and bear cases for popular stocks.

The premium tier allows you to organize the assets in your portfolio into custom groups and compare their performances side by side. You’ll also get member’s-only analysis on earnings announcements, sector-wide trends, and vital economic reports.

Exclusive audio programming will keep you up-to-date on breaking stories making the rounds, with expert analysts giving you all the information you need.

Account Setup and Management with the Public Investing App

The signup process for the Public app is simple. All you need to do is provide your name, email address, phone number, date of birth, and Social Security Number (SSN).

Once you have provided this information, you will be asked to create a username and password for your account. After completing the signup process, your account will be ready to use.

Account Management Options

Account management options with Public are easy to use and offer users complete control over their investments. Here are a few account management options with the Public app.

Users can view their portfolio performance in real-time and set up automatic deposits or withdrawals from their bank accounts into their investment accounts.

Additionally, users can customize notifications to know when certain events occur, such as when a stock reaches a certain price point or when an investment matures.

Secure Data

Public takes security seriously by implementing measures such as two-factor authentication for logins and encrypted data storage on its servers.

They also monitor user activity closely for any suspicious behavior that could indicate fraud or identity theft attempts.

Furthermore, Public a member of SIPC, which protects securities customers of its members up to $500,000 (including $250,000 for claims for cash). Apex, their clearing firm, also provides an additional insurance policy to supplement SIPC protection.

No Payment for Order Flow

Public no longer participates in payment for order flow (PFOF) to generate revenue. PFOF refers to the payments that brokers receive for directing their trade orders to market makers instead of directly to the exchanges. For some free trading apps, a significant portion of their income is derived from PFOF. But the SEC has alleged that PFOF often leads to lower execution quality (inferior trade prices) which can cost traders a lot of money over time.

In 2021, Public drastically changed its business model. Instead of continuing with the controversial practice of receiving payments for order flow (which could have disadvantaged individual investors), they opted instead for ethical alternatives that prioritize transparency for their customers.

This meant introducing tipping services and lending out shares to help individuals access more markets and earn interest on not-yet-invested balances held in user accounts.

The Public investing app offers a secure, user-friendly platform for setting up and managing your retirement investments. With excellent customer support services available to answer any questions or concerns, you can be sure that your retirement planning is in good hands.

How to Sign Up for Public

To sign up for Public, visit visit their website and have Public text you a link to their app. Once you’ve downloaded the app, here is the information that Public will ask for:

  • Name
  • Social Security Number (all brokerages require this information by law)
  • Address
  • Phone number
  • Email address
  • Birthday
  • Employment status
  • Marital status and dependents

In my experience, it took less than 5 minutes to open my Public account. Next, Public will ask you to connect your bank so that you fund your account. Once you’ve funded your account, you’re all set to start using Public’s platform.

Customer Support Services from Public

Public offers a wide range of customer support services to help investors with their accounts. These include email and live chat. The response time for inquiries is usually speedy, and the staff is knowledgeable about all aspects of investing with Public.


For those who prefer self-service options, there is an extensive Help Center on the website that provides answers to frequently asked questions and step-by-step instructions for setting up and managing accounts.

Additionally, helpful video tutorials are available for more complex topics, such as tax optimization strategies or portfolio rebalancing techniques.

Contacting Customer Service

You can contact the customer service team at Public via email or live in-app or web chat during business hours (Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. EST). They a offer personalized response based on each investor’s individual needs and goals.

Additionally, they provide detailed explanations about any investment trading fees so that customers understand exactly what they’re paying for before making any decisions.

Live Chat

Finally, the Public app has a live chat feature that lets customers get quick answers to their questions without waiting on hold or sending emails back and forth over several days.

This feature is handy when dealing with urgent matters such as account security issues or technical problems related to trading platforms used by the company.

Overall, Public provides comprehensive customer support services designed specifically for investors looking to make informed decisions regarding their retirement planning goals while minimizing risk exposure in volatile market conditions.

Should You Invest With Public?

Whether you should use Public depends on what type of investor you are and what goals you have set for yourself when managing your finances in the retirement planning stages.

If cost savings are important, then considering Public could be beneficial due to its lack of fees, but if diversification into different asset classes is key, then other services may better suit your needs instead.

Alternatives to Public

If Public isn’t for you, here are a few alternative brokers we’d recommend:


Acorns is an investing app that automatically allows users to invest their spare change. The app rounds up each purchase to the nearest dollar and invests the difference into a portfolio of ETFs. Acorns also offers a variety of other features, such as the ability to set up recurring investments and track your progress over time.


Robinhood is an investing app that offers commission-free trading. This means that users can buy and sell stocks without paying any fees. Robinhood also offers several other features, such as tracking your portfolio performance and setting up recurring investments.


Betterment is an investing app that offers both automated investing and human advice. With Betterment, you can choose to have your money automatically invested in a portfolio of ETFs or speak with a financial advisor who can help you make investment decisions. Betterment also offers many other features, such as setting up recurring investments and tracking your progress over time.

FAQs About the Public Investing App

Is Public a legit company?

Yes, Public is a legit company registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company has received numerous awards and accolades from reputable sources, including Investopedia and Barron’s, for its innovative investing platform.

Is Public a good trading app?

Public is a good trading app for those looking to accelerate their investment portfolio. It offers commission-free trades, easy-to-use tools and resources, and access to real-time market data.

Additionally, it provides educational content on topics such as retirement planning and investing strategies.

The app also allows users to track their investments in one place and monitor performance over time. Public is an excellent choice for those who want to get the most out of their retirement savings plan.

Is Robinhood better than Public?

It is difficult to definitively answer whether Robinhood or public investing is better without knowing the individual investor’s goals and risk tolerance.

Generally speaking, Robinhood offers a low-cost platform for trading stocks and ETFs with no commissions, which can be beneficial for those looking to save on fees.

On the other hand, Public investing may offer more diversification options and access to professional advice from advisors familiar with the market.

Ultimately, it comes down to what works best for each investor regarding their financial goals and risk tolerance.

How do you make money on the Public app?

You can make money with the Public investing app through various strategies, including stock trading, dividend reinvestment, and index-tracking funds. Additionally, you can utilize advanced reporting tools to create portfolios tailored to your specific needs and goals.

Is the Public app a good idea?

Whether or not the Public app is a good idea depends on the individual’s financial goals and risk tolerance. Public can provide access to stocks, ETFs, and crypto. These types of investments offer the potential for higher returns than traditional savings accounts but also come with more significant risks.

It is important to consider one’s own personal circumstances before investing in any type of security. A qualified financial advisor can help assess an individual’s retirement goals and determine if using the Public app for your investments is appropriate for your portfolio.


The Public app is an excellent option for those looking to invest in the stock market, ETFs, and crypto all in one place with no commission fees or account minimums. The app offers an easy-to-use interface that makes investing accessible to everyone.

Having no access to things like broad alternative assets (NFTs, etc.) and not being able to get direct investment advice when paying for a premium subscription brings Public down just a bit in my book, but not enough not to recommend it.

With no trading fees and accessible customer support services, it’s clear why so many people are choosing a Public account as their go-to investment platform.

This Public app review has highlighted the features of this free investing app and given you all the information you need to make an informed decision about whether or not it’s right for your financial goals.


  • Clint Proctor

    Clint Proctor is a freelance writer and founder of [], where he writes about how students and millennials can win with money. When he's away from his keyboard, he enjoys drinking coffee, traveling, obsessing over the Green Bay Packers, and spending time with his wife and two boys.