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Although Robinhood is a popular trading platform, if you’ve decided that it’s not the best option for you and you want to give Public.com a try, don’t worry. It is possible to transfer your holdings from Robinhood to Public.com and in this article, we’ll walk you through the process.
Read our Robinhood vs. Public comparison to see how these two platforms stack up next to each other.
How Account Transfers Work Between Brokers & Dealers
If you’re fairly new to trading and this is the first time that you’re transferring to another platform, it can seem a little daunting, but there’s actually quite a standard process. Customer accounts for most broker dealers are transferred with an automated process, operated by the NSCC (National Securities Clearing Corporation) called ACATS (Automated Customer Account Transfer Service). The transfers for most of the common assets including stocks, bonds, and listed options can be easily transferred through ACATS.
While the process is automated, the account transfer process can be impacted by some regulations and factors. For example, to prevent unauthorized account transfers, your existing platform needs to check the transfer request and ensure that all the information is correct. If the name or Social Security number on the request does not match the account details, the transfer request will be rejected. In most cases, validating the transfer process can take approximately three business days.
After the transfer request has been validated, your existing platform will send a list of account assets to the new platform. This will be reviewed to determine if the account transfer will be accepted. Some firms may decline an account transfer request due to a conflict with credit policies or failure to meet minimum equity requirements for a margin loan.
When the account information has been properly matched and the account has been accepted by the new platform, it will take approximately three business days to complete the delivery process and complete the transfer. However, if there are other factors such as an account requiring a custodian, the process may take more time.
How to Transfer From Robinhood to Public.com
The first thing that you’ll need to do is open up a new brokerage account with Public.com. This is quite simple, as all you need to do is follow the instructions at Public.com. Once your Public.com account is open, you can start the ACAT transfer process.
Join Public to get up to $300 of free stock when you make a deposit.*
Within the app, look for the person icon on the bottom right-hand side of the screen. Tap this and then tap the gear icon, which will take you into the settings options. Scroll down the list to find “Transfer my stocks to Public”. This will open a new page that allows you to transfer stocks and ETFs into your new Public.com account. Just be aware that you cannot transfer cryptocurrencies or options. You’ll see a list of brokerage firms with broker logos. You should find Robinhood in this list, so simply tap the logo and then enter your account number.
However, before you finalize the ACAT request, you will need to be aware that Robinhood does charge a $75 ACAT transfer fee. You will also need to check all your trades are settled in your account and you have no open orders.
If you’re transferring more than $150, Public.com will cover the ACAT transfer fee the Robinhood charges.
Public.com does state that the entire transfer process will take less than ten business days.
What Happens After You Initiate a Transfer
As we touched on above, it can take up to ten business days to complete the transfer process, so what happens during this time?
After you initiate a transfer, Robinhood will restrict your account to ensure the transfer can be processed smoothly. This means that your account will be locked, so you won’t have access to buying or selling new positions, you will also no longer have the option to deposit or withdraw any cash. Additionally, you won’t be able to make any trades on the assets affected by the in-process transfer. However, you will still own the positions and be able to see the current market value in the app.
During the transfer process, you may still receive some assets during subsequent, residual sweep distributions. Residual sweeps are the processing of transferring any remaining securities in the account after the completion of an initial ACAT transfer. These are common if you have unsettled trades or any dividend payments at the time the transfer request is received. Residual sweeps tend to occur weekly after the completion of the initial transfer, but you don’t need to take any action to initiate them.
As part of the transfer process, your Robinhood Gold and Cash Management status will be downgraded. If you decide that you want to use Robinhood again, you will need to subscribe to Gold and upgrade again.
The Difference Between a Full and Partial Transfer
When you start to investigate how to transfer from Robinhood to Public.com, you’re likely to come across the terms “full transfer” and “partial transfer”. It’s important to understand the differences between these two types of transfer to decide which is the best choice for you.
As its name implies, full transfers move your entire portfolio completely over to your new Public.com account before closing out your Robinhood account. When you initiate a full transfer, your Robinhood account is restricted during the transfer process. While you can still view your assets to monitor any changes, you won’t be able to do any trades or rebalancing. As we mentioned above, you may have a residual sweep after the initial transfer to collect any unsettled trade orders, pending dividend payments or assets that were not included as part of your portfolio when the first transfer occurred.
Partial transfers are a bit less complicated. Rather than transferring your entire portfolio, you’re authorizing the transfer of a select portion of your assets. Any unsettled orders or residual dividends will simply be added to your Robinhood account, which remains functional and open. However, there will be restrictions on assets included in the transfer.
A partial transfer can be a good way to invest in a new brokerage without committing all of your investments and money. You will need to assess whether a full or partial transfer from Robinhood to Public.com is the best choice for you.
Related reading: Ways to Get Free Stocks
What happens to your assets when you request a transfer will depend on the type of asset.
ETFs and Stocks
If you have any full, settled shares, they should be transferred across to Public.com. Any fractional shares will be sold (fractional shares cannot be transferred) and the funds resulting from the sale will be transferred across as cash during a residual sweep.
The options contracts you hold will be transferred to Public.com, However, options due to expire within five business days will not transfer.
Any cryptocurrencies are held in a separate Robinhood Crypto account that is not included in a transfer order. Since this is not able to be transferred to another brokerage, to ensure there is no delay to your transfer request, you should liquidate any cryptocurrencies before you initiate the transfer.
According to Robinhood, if you don’t liquidate the crypto positions, Robinhood Crypto may liquidate your crypto on your behalf. The resulting funds from liquidating your crypto will be transferred to Public.com as cash either with your initial transfer or during your residual transfer period.
While the transfer process is automated, there are several issues that can cause a delay or can compromise a successful account transfer. Fortunately, we have some tips to help you to ensure a successful account transfer.
- Review the transfer process details: Before you initiate a transfer, be sure to read through the details of the transfer process on both Robinhood and Public.com. This will help you to understand what to expect and what you need to supply to successfully complete a transfer.
- Check for specific Public.com policies that could impact your account transfer: It’s also important to check through Public.com’s account policies to check if there are any specific constraints that may prevent a full account transfer. For example, if you have a margin account, you need to ensure that you meet Public.com’s minimum requirements before you attempt a transfer.
- Complete trades before initiating a transfer: Bear in mind that Robinhood will freeze your account once the transfer process has begun. This means that you will be unable to make traes until the transfer is complete. So, you will need to check through your holdings to make sure you complete any necessary trades before you start the transfer process. For example, if you have a volatile stock, you will not be able to sell during the transfer, so it may be worth selling before you begin.
- Don’t be afraid to ask questions: You may read through the process details, but this may not answer all of your queries. So, ask Public.com your questions. You can find out if there’s anything that could cause a delay during the transfer process.
If your account transfer is rejected, it could be for a number of reasons including:
- A discrepancy in the information between the two accounts, such as the account holder name or social security number.
- Trades have been attempted during the transfer period.
- The transfer order has been duplicated.
- The value of the account has fallen below the Public.com minimum requirements or accepting the transfer will trigger a Public.com margin call.
You’ll need to contact Public.com to find out the specific reason that your account transfer failed. It’s possible that you may be able to get an answer from Robinhood, but the quickest way is to speak to Public.com as the receiving firm is likely to have more information.
Once you know the specific reason why your account transfer was rejected, you can resolve the issue and then resubmit your transfer request.
The beauty of ACAT transfers is that they allow you to transfer investments between brokers or firms as is. This means that you don’t need to sell your investments and then transfer cash. Providing you have whole stocks, you will be able to transfer your entire portfolio to Public.com without needing to sell anything. However, if you have fractional shares, these may not be transferred. Robinhood will automatically liquidate any fractional shares and the cash proceeds will be transferred across to Public.com.
Regardless of whether you opt for a full or partial transfer, Robinhood does impose a $75 fee on transfers out of your account. This fee applies to ACAT transfers and there is no way to avoid this fee. However, some brokerages, including Public.com will cover your outgoing transfer fee as an incentive to move your portfolio over to them. Public.com does not impose a fee for incoming transfers and if your incoming account is over $150, it will cover the fee you incur from Robinhood.
The standard timeframe for account transfers is approximately six working days, but Public.com does state that account transfers will be complete within 10 days. Public.com aims to expedite all the admin related to the transfer to ensure that it is complete as quickly as possible.
If you’ve already decided that Robinhood is not the right platform for you, don’t worry as you don’t need to sell your investments and start all over with a new platform. With Public.com covering the outgoing transfer fee from Robinhood, you can move your portfolio over to them without needing to cover costs.
Public.com will handle all aspects of the transfer, you simply need to be familiar with your responsibilities and be prepared for an account freeze during the transfer process. If you take note of the information within this article, there should be no unpleasant surprises transferring from Robinhood to Public.com and you’ll know exactly what to expect. Then, within 10 days, you can get back to trading and trying out a brand new platform.
Join Public to get up to $300 of free stock when you make a deposit.*
*Offer valid for U.S. residents 18+ and subject to account approval. This is not a recommendation. You can lose money with any investment. Open To The Public Investing is a member of FINRA & SIPC. Regulatory and firm fees apply. New customers receive free stock with value $3-300; 0.3% receive the max value. Cryptocurrency trading offered by Apex Crypto LLC. See Public.com/disclosures/