Is robo-advice really just self-directed investing?

5 August 2016

Robo advice is not a business model but rather a technology model which allows clients to do the driving, according to US expert and chief executive of Riskalyze, Aaron Klein.

In a keynote address to Money Management's Fintech, Platforms and Wraps Conference today, Klein sought to define what he saw as the most appropriate role for robo advice — as an adjunct to holistic advice.

"Robo advice is like automatic teller machines are to banks, in the end people want humans involved in the process," he said.

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Klein said there needed to be an understanding that self-directed investing did not actually equate to advice and that until robots had the ability to empathise and think, this would continue to be the case.

He said that where robo advice did deliver value was in terms of freeing up the time of planners to deal with more complex and valuable advice issues.

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