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Apps That Nudge, Nag and Manipulate You Into Financial Health

By Ben Steverman - 2014-04-07T17:15:02Z

Photograph by Zeb Andrews/Getty Images

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Strategic Contacts

When the stock market drops, some investors might need reassuring from their advisers, and others might be better left alone. Online investment manager Betterment tries to distinguish between the two. If your past behavior suggests you're prone to panicking and doing something stupid during market corrections, the start-up sends you reassuring messages. But if you're a calmer and less engaged investor, you won't be contacted. “By actually bringing this to your attention," said Dan Egan, Betterment’s director of investing and behavioral finance, "we might be the ones stressing you out.”

Related: The Booming Business in Behavioral Finance