Tom
Head of Content

About Chip Investments

Everything you want to know about Chip Investments and how they work; what funds we offer, if it's right for you, how it's different from savings, and more...

What are Chip Investments? 

Chip Investments are an easy and low cost way to access investment funds, so you can grow your money and build a diversified investment portfolio in just a couple of taps.

We’ve built an ‘investment platform’, to use the industry jargon. 

We’re partnering with the largest fund manager in the world, BlackRock, to bring you multi-asset investment funds that will put your money to work by investing in stocks and shares in global markets and bonds from around the world. 

Our first funds offer historical average annual returns of up to 8%, and we’re planning to add more! 

However, investing is different from savings, your capital is at risk and you might get out less than you put into an investment fund (read more on this here).

That said, investing in funds is generally less risky than trading stocks, and offers something of a compromise between the no-risk/low-return safety of savings and the high-risk/return world of playing the stock market. 

Your returns should be much higher than you’ll get from savings interest, and by spreading your investment across a wide variety of equities and bonds your exposure to the market is much broader than if you were investing in a single company. 

All you need to get started is your National Insurance number.

If all of this sounds like jargon to you, don’t worry, we’ve pulled together a comprehensive list of FAQs that should help bust the jargon and help you understand investing. 

After all, we believe that the benefits of investing should be for everyone, not just the super wealthy. 

How are investment funds different from savings accounts?

See below for the full answer, but as a brief overview:

Savings accounts: 

  • Your money is stored with a bank as cash
  • The bank may pay you interest
  • Many banks offer interest rates near 0%, the average is currently just 0.6% according to the Bank of England
  • The advantage is there is essentially no risk to your money
  • Depending on the account it shouldn’t take more than a day or so to deposit or withdraw your money
  • They are suitable for safety net funds as they are covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS)
  • They are typically free to access, but the better accounts can require large minimum deposits and you may be required to lock away your money for a set period of time

Investment funds:

  • You access the fund through a ‘platform’
  • Your money is invested by a fund manager into a wide variety of assets
  • Investment funds typically offer much higher returns than savings accounts
  • The trade-off is your money is at risk
  • You buy and sell ‘units’ of the fund, instead of depositing/withdrawing cash
  • It takes longer to move money in and out (up to a week or even longer)
  • They are not suitable for safety-net funds, or money you need for essential spending
  • They are a place to grow for long term savings (think money you don’t want to withdraw for 5+ years)
  • Generally, management and platform fees apply


Savings accounts

The savings accounts listed in Chip store your money as cash in a UK authorised bank. 

Provided you are eligible for the FSCS guarantee this means your capital is not at risk, and other than the effects of inflation, you don’t need to worry about your money losing value. 

Whilst the bank will typically lend your money to make a profit, and pass some of this back to you as interest, given the current level of UK interest rates, generally the value of your money will not increase. 

Investment funds

The investment funds we’ll offer are provided by a fund manager (BlackRock), you can buy ‘units’ of this fund (see more under ‘investments basics’).

A fund manager (in our case BlackRock) spreads your money out across multiple different assets, like stocks and shares, or government or corporate bonds, with the aim of earning returns.

This means when your money is in an investment fund your capital (money) is at risk, and there is always a chance you may get less money out than you put in. There are a number of measures investment fund managers take to mitigate this risk, but it is an inevitable part of investing.

Are investment funds right for me?

Consider your financial position carefully before moving any money into investment funds from your savings. 

Generally they are only something you should consider if you have savings that you do not need immediate access to. Especially as it can take a few days to get your money in or out of an investment fund by buying or selling your units (see more under ‘access’ below). 

In essence, it is unwise to put any money into an investment fund that you may need for necessary expenses. They are a place to put your long term savings: think your 5-10 year financial plans, not saving for a holiday. 

Investments are a long to medium term commitment (i.e. 5+ years). 

It’s important to understand that investment funds are not a get-rich quick scheme, and you will see times where your returns are low, stagnant, or even negative. However, over the long term it is likely you will see a positive return on your money. 

We provide an average annual return figure as well as the full past performance data covering the history of the fund, read more about these below under the ‘Returns’ section.

What funds are Chip offering? 

For launch we’re offering three funds with the world’s largest fund manager BlackRock. 

We’re calling them:

  • BlackRock Cautious 
  • BlackRock Balanced
  • BlackRock Adventurous

These are from the BlackRock Consensus multifund range and have been operating for nearly a decade, investing across the world. They’re not new products, but this is the first time they’re being offered in an app like Chip. 

What assets are contained within these investment funds? 

The BlackRock consensus funds that we’re offering invests your money into a collection of smaller tracker funds, these contain a wide spread of equities (stocks and shares) and bonds, in markets all around the world. See more in ‘Investment basics’ and ‘About BlackRock’ guides.

Can I autosave into an investment fund?

You can’t yet send your auto-saves into your investment accounts, but it is something we’re looking at for future iterations. 

Can I directly move money from one of my cash accounts in Chip into an investment fund?

You can’t yet directly move money from any of your Chip cash accounts to an investment account in Chip.

If you would like to move money from one of your cash accounts into an investment fund you need to withdraw your money back into your linked bank account, and then move it into a fund. 

Do I get regular statements? Can I request a statement?

You will see daily performance in the app for each fund and your portfolio. We will provide you with quarterly valuation statements for your investment funds, where you will be able to see the entire portfolio value, as well as any growth and fees on your account. You can access these using your Chip app.

Read more about investments


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