Nutty

Best managed Stocks & Shares ISA

Christopher Dowling
Editor-in-Chief
Updated
May 22, 2024

In a nutshell

We’ve reviewed all the best Stocks & shares ISAs and Moneyfarm comes out top. It’s the best performer over the last 5 years by a mile! We’ve compared it against the most popular managed ISAs, Wealthify and Nutmeg, plus against the industry average – and Moneyfarm crushes all of them.

Are you a keen investor already? Or perhaps a complete beginner (good job on getting started). We’ve got you both covered. We’ve reviewed the best managed Stocks & Shares ISAs so you can be confident your money is growing in the best place possible.

Let’s get straight to it, here’s the best managed Stocks & Shares ISA – afterwards, we’ll cover how we reviewed their performance over the last 5 years to determine the best place to invest your money.

The best managed Stocks & Share ISA

Moneyfarm wins!

Moneyfarm is the best performing Stocks & Share ISA, and it’s low cost, and super easy to use.

Visit Moneyfarm¹Visit Moneyfarm¹

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Expert advice
Moneyfarm rated 5 stars

Moneyfarm

Moneyfarm is a great option for saving and investing (both ISAs and pensions). It's easy to use and their experts can help you with any questions or guidance you need.

They have one of the top performing investment records, and great socially responsible investing options too. Plus, you can save cash and get a high interest rate.

The fees are low, and reduce as you save more. Plus, the customer service is outstanding.

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Pros

  • Great for beginners and hands-off investors
  • Easy to use
  • ISA
  • Pension
  • Free personal investment advisor
  • Great track record for growing money
  • Socially responsible options
  • Invest cash for a high return

Cons

  • Have to invest at least £500
  • Not much else!

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Cheapest
InvestEngine rated 5 stars

InvestEngine

InvestEngine offers a very low cost way to manage your savings - and their experts handle everything. It's just 0.25% per year (account fee).

The track record is great, and you can manage everything on your mobile (if you want to).

There's a low minimum investment of £100, and you'll be able to save and invest within a tax-free Stocks & Shares ISA too, so your money can grow faster.

You can also make your own investments alongside, and all for free (ETFs only).

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Capital at risk. (T&Cs apply.)

Moneyfarm wins!

Moneyfarm is the best performing Stocks & Share ISA, and it’s low cost, and super easy to use.

Visit Moneyfarm¹Visit Moneyfarm¹

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Average performing Stocks & Shares ISAs

Moneyfarm wins!

Moneyfarm is the best performing Stocks & Share ISA, and it’s low cost, and super easy to use.

Visit Moneyfarm¹Visit Moneyfarm¹

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Start with £1
Wealthify rated 4 stars

Wealthify

Wealthify makes investing simple. You pick from a few simple options and the experts take care of the rest.

It's perfect for beginners and you can get started from just £1.

The fees are reasonable, however the socially responsible option is on the higher side.

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Expert advice
Nutmeg rated 3 stars

Nutmeg

Nutmeg is a good digital wealth manager – their experts will handle everything for you. However, the investment track record isn’t the best, and they’re one of the most expensive. Plus, they’re the furthest you’ll get from socially responsible investing. There’s better options out there.

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Best managed Stocks & Shares ISA

Stocks & Shares ISA performance review

How did we work out which is the best managed Stocks and Shares ISA? Well, it’s all down to the past performance over the last 5 years.

We looked at the investment performance of the most popular expert-managed Stocks and Shares ISA: Moneyfarm, Nutmeg and Wealthify to see who came out top. 

To do that, we took the 4 main categories of risk level (or risk options), which are: lower risk, medium risk, higher risk and highest risk and for each one, then looked at the last 5 years investment performance to see who came out top.

If you’re not sure what risk level means – it’s essentially the investment strategy the experts use to grow your money…

Higher risk levels aim to grow your money more over time (long term), but there could be bigger ups-and-downs in the short-term (a few years) to achieve this. Whereas lower risk levels means fewer ups-and-downs in the short-term, but also lower potential growth in the long-term.

Investing risk level

And without further ado, here are the results for each category:

Lower risk performance results

The total investment ISA performance over the last 5 years.

Nutmeg 1.00%
Moneyfarm 8.30%
Wealthify 2.70%
Industry average 5.30%

Medium risk performance results

The total investment ISA performance over the last 5 years.

Nutmeg 5.70%
Moneyfarm 11.50%
Wealthify 7.70%
Industry average 9.40%

Higher risk performance results

The total investment ISA performance over the last 5 years.

Nutmeg 14.40%
Moneyfarm 21.00%
Wealthify 13.50%
Industry average 14.00%

Highest risk performance results

The total investment ISA performance over the last 5 years.

Nutmeg 23.30%
Moneyfarm 26.70%
Wealthify 17.80%
Industry average 18.20%

The winner

As you can see, Moneyfarm has completely run away with it in each category. Very impressive! Not only have they beaten the other popular platforms, Nutmeg and Wealthify, but they’ve also beaten the industry average too – good job guys!

Note: the industry average is a figure tracked by an investment firm called Asset Risk Consultants (ARC). They track the performance of a large number of investment funds over time to produce an industry average for each risk option, which they call an index – and we’ve used this for each category.

Investment fund

You can learn more about how we got the results and the industry average with our guide to the best performing Stocks and Shares ISA. And the performance for each individual year too.

We highly recommend the winner Moneyfarm¹ – not only because they are the best performing managed Stocks and Shares ISA, but they’re also one of the cheapest out there, are super easy to use and they have expert advisors to give you personalised advice. Pretty great right? You can learn more about them with our Moneyfarm review.

If you’re just getting started and don’t want to invest the £500 minimum investment with Moneyfarm, check out Wealthify¹, they’re great too (just with lower performance over the last 5 years), and you can get started from as little as £1. You can always switch to Moneyfarm later once you’ve got £500 saved up.

Why invest with a managed Stocks & Shares ISA?

Let’s face it, investing can be stressful, and you don't know where to start! With an expert managed Stocks and Share ISA, you don’t need to worry about a thing. The experts take care of everything, and aim to grow your money (a lot) over the long term. All you need to do is simply add your cash and be patient. It’s as simple as that.

Expert-managed Stocks & Shares ISA

We recommend using an expert-managed investment ISA for long-term investing, and we highly recommend long-term investing! Your savings can seriously grow over time, you’ll be amazed at how big your savings can get given long enough.

It’s all down to something called compound interest… (Referred to as the 8th wonder of the world by Albert Einstein.)

Compound interest

Compound interest is where the money your investments make, start making money too, and this snowballs over and over, called compounding. And really makes a big difference over time.

Let’s run through an example. Imagine your investments make 10% in one year, and you started with £500, so you made £50, so you now have £550 in total. In the next year, your money also increased by 10%, but instead of making £50, you’ve now made £55. This means your total pot will be £605 – so the next year you’d make £60.50. Over time this number increases more and more.

Now let’s use some bigger numbers and over a longer time frame. Say you started with £1,000 and were adding £300 into your savings each month, and let’s say your investments make 5% each year on average. Over 25 years, you’d have a massive £184,134!

And if you kept it invested for another 10 years, it would nearly double to £346,561. Pretty crazy right?

Compound interest

If you’re working, you will probably have a pension too – compounding interest is how your pension can grow very large over your working career, with you ending up with a nice big pension pot when you’re ready to retire.

If you don’t have a pension yet, we highly recommend it – and on top of your money growing, the government automatically gives you an extra 25% free every time you pay in! Here’s where to find the best pension providers to learn more and get started.

Pension bonus

Not sure what a Stocks & Share ISA is?

Don’t worry, we’ll run through it quickly. An ISA stands for Individual Savings Account. It’s an investment account where everything you make is completely tax-free, forever!

Individual Savings Account (ISA)

You can invest up to £20,000 each tax year (April 6th to April 5th the following year), which is called your annual ISA allowance (it’s actually the total across all of your ISAs, for instance a Cash ISA and a Lifetime ISA too).

ISA allowance

The tax you might otherwise pay is Capital Gains Tax, Income Tax and Dividend Tax. Which are all types of taxes on investment growth (investments that rise in value) and the income you might make from them.

Stocks and Shares ISA tax

The only thing to watch out for, is that you can only pay into one Stocks and Shares ISA per year – so pick wisely! Well, pick the best one for you. Perhaps one with a great track record of investing, has low fees and is easy to use – our top recommendation is Moneyfarm¹. You can also check out the full range of investment platforms too. 

If you’ve already invested into a Stocks & Shares ISA this tax year, you can still invest using a General Investment Account (GIA), where there’s no tax-free benefits, and you’ll have to pay tax, but only if your profit exceeds the Capital Gains Tax allowance of £3,000 within a tax year (and this only applies when you sell the shares).

General Investment Account vs ISA

Is investing in an ISA safe?

Yep. Investing in a Stocks and Shares ISA is completely safe. Your ISA provider must be authorised and approved by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). That means they’ve been reviewed and allowed to look after your money, and must follow strict rules. They’ll also be regularly audited.

Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)

That also means you are protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). Meaning, should anything bad happen to your ISA provider (unlikely), you’ll be compensated by up to £85,000. However, you’ll actually have extra protection, as all ISA providers must keep your money and investments completely separate from their own funds and held separately with a large bank, all in your name – so your funds can only be returned to you.

Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS)

Having said that, your investments can lose money and go down in value, which is different. But remember investing is for the long-term, there will be lots of ups-and-downs in the short term but smooth out over the long term.

When to manage your own Stocks & Shares ISA

If you’re keen to manage your own investments within an investment ISA, you’ve got lots of options. Although we recommend using an expert-managed Stocks & Shares ISA, unless you are a pro!

If you know what you’re doing when it comes to investing, a self-managed Stocks & Shares ISA gives you the ability to pick from a much wider range of investment options and can be a lower fee overall. Although expert-managed ISAs aren’t necessarily expensive (experts worth its weight in gold).

Self-managed Stocks & Shares ISA

You can also buy and sell individual shares if you want to, rather than investment funds (the more popular type of investing, which are groups of investments pooled together) – the choice is yours, and there’s 10,000s investments out there on the stock market – from stock exchanges across the world.

If you’re keen to manage your own ISA, here’s the best investment platforms. We recommend checking out InvestEngine¹ too, they’re completely fee free and have a great range of investment options (only exchange-traded funds (ETFs)). Here’s our InvestEngine review to learn more.

Let’s recap

So there we have it, from the 3 of the most popular expert-managed Stocks & Shares ISAs, Moneyfarm is the winner – and by a massive margin! A very impressive performance over the last 5 years, not just beating Wealthify and Nutmeg, but also the industry average – a hard thing to do in general.

Looking at past performances doesn't mean the same will happen in the future. But, it is a good indicator of how good the experts are at looking after and growing money over time (they’re also called a fund manager) – and picking a good ISA with a great track record could mean a better chance of the same outcome continuing.

If you are looking for a new ISA, we highly recommend Moneyfarm – their investment performance is pretty unbeatable, the fees are low, it’s super easy to use, and they have expert advisors to help you make the right decisions for you. What more could you ask for? Head over to the Moneyfarm website¹ to get started. 

And good luck investing – not that you need it, you’re in safe hands with the experts.

Moneyfarm wins!

Moneyfarm is the best performing Stocks & Share ISA, and it’s low cost, and super easy to use.

Visit Moneyfarm¹Visit Moneyfarm¹

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Moneyfarm wins!

Moneyfarm is the best performing Stocks & Share ISA, and it’s low cost, and super easy to use.

Visit Moneyfarm¹Visit Moneyfarm¹

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