When you deposit money with Betterment, your money is transferred to Betterment Securities, a FINRA member broker-dealer, with instructions to buy ETFs based on your desired asset allocation between stocks and bonds (Betterment’s two investment baskets). You own shares in the stock and bond ETFs that Betterment recommends for these two baskets and Betterment manages buying and selling them for you.
Your funds are automatically invested within 1-2 business days into Betterment’s portfolio, based on our algorithm’s recommended mix of funds. You’ll receive a confirmation email that details the shares purchased, and your Betterment balance will update daily based on the market value of those shares. As Betterment is a long-term passive investment platform, rather than a self-directed trading platform, we do not keep your funds in cash, nor do you select specific securities to purchase.