Amidst Robinhood’s planned service changes, a tension between growth and safety

Amidst Robinhood’s planned service changes, a tension between growth and safety

Robinhood’s development as an extremely low-cost strategy to make investments has shaken up fintech.

Fueled by lots of of hundreds of thousands of exterior money, the no-fee buying and selling platform has compelled home rivals to slash their charges, spawned worldwide competitors, and, within the eyes of some, helped propel the current equities growth.

The firm’s success in driving development has led to surging revenues. As The Block lately reported, some Robinhood filings (right here and right here) present that the corporate earned “practically $100 million in charges for inventory and choices order circulate” in Q1 2020. For context, the identical a part of Robinhood’s enterprise was reported to have generated $69 million in income throughout all of 2018.

For a startup valued north of $eight billion, Robinhood’s traders are betting that it’ll shortly scale as a enterprise, one thing the well-known unicorn seems to be doing in current quarters and years.

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However, the identical filings present that Robinhood’s incomes from fee for order circulate — what Investopedia defines as “compensation and profit a brokerage agency receives for steering orders to completely different events for commerce execution” — come extra from choices buying and selling than they do the shopping for and promoting of shares within the method that you just may be extra conversant in. (Robinhood makes cash in numerous methods, together with “revenue generated from money,” its subscription service and different strategies.)

Indeed, when TechCrunch first reviewed the filings that broke down how a lot revenue Robinhood earns from several types of order circulate, we famous that the corporate generated comparatively massive sums from choices when contrasted to what the corporate may extract from extra pedestrian fairness orders. But the actual fact didn’t stand out an excessive amount of on the time; the corporate has a number of buying and selling varietals, so who cares which of them convey in additional income?

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It didn’t matter till the corporate’s consumer base recorded a tragedy after a 20-year-old consumer died by suicide after the Robinhood app confirmed them a stability to the tune of destructive $730,000. It seems the stability wasn’t actually a debt, however apparently a mid-trade choices UI quirk.


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