Most parents today probably wish their kids spent less time on social media, and more time on activities that set them up for future success. However, a 2021 survey from Wells Fargo suggests that all that screen time may not be such a bad thing, afterall. The Wells Fargo Parent-Teen Study on investing found that 35% of teens were learning financial lessons from social media.
The finding shouldn’t come as a surprise, and yet only 12% of parents surveyed believed their teens used social media for financial education. The reality is, social media platforms such as TikTok and Instagram are making it easier for teens to get exposure to financial education, especially around modern concepts such as digital currency. It's increasingly common to see popular influencers hyping up cryptocurrencies, detailing their investments in them, and encouraging their young followers to do the same.
The worrying part is, while the information and exposure to investing concepts may be present in social media content, a vanishingly small number of influencers mention this key detail about cryptocurrency: that investing in crypto under the age of 18 is illegal in the United States unless the investment account is sponsored by a parent or guardian.
Activating the next generation of crypto investors
We created Stack to provide the first and only legal opportunity for under-18 users to invest in crypto. The Stack app takes inspiration from the gaming and social media communities to get the next generation to get involved in crypto in a safe, easy, and approachable way. Built first and foremost as an educational platform, Stack teaches teens — parents! — how to make smart investing choices in digital currency.
As digital currency enters the mainstream, the younger generations are leaps and bounds ahead of the rest in terms of knowledge and ownership. That same Wells Fargo survey found that 45% of teens think they knew more about crypto than their parents. And parents agreed: 50% said their teen knew more about Bitcoin than they did. Moreover, a Pew Research Center study found that the younger you go, the more likely an adult in the U.S. is to own crypto. Nearly a third (31%) of adults aged 18-29 invest in crypto, compared to only 8% of those aged 50-64, and 3% over the age of 65.
Unfortunately, despite the growing interest in cryptocurrency in younger demographics, people under the age of 18 can't invest in crypto without having a parent or guardian serving as the custodian of their account. Until, that is, we release the Stack app.
Custodial crypto for under-18 investors
Stack is specifically designed for custodial crypto because we think everyone, regardless of age, should be able to participate in digital currency and invest in their futures. A custodial account is one that is opened in a minor’s name, but managed by a parent or guardian until the minor turns 18 or 21 (depending on which state you’re in). It’s probably how you got your first debit card or opened your first savings account at the bank.
In fact, that same Wells Fargo survey we mentioned before found that 17% of parents have opened a custodial account and invested on their teen’s behalf. The difference between Stack and a traditional custodial account is two-fold:
Investments are made in cryptocurrency
The minor has visibility and access to their account
That second part is huge for teens as they long for more engagement with investments being made on their behalf. We liken investing with Stack to teaching your teen to drive: they’re in the driver’s seat, but you can still grab the wheel. Meaning, teens request to buy or sell holdings in crypto in the app, but you ultimately make the decision to approve or deny their request. This way, teens feel in control, but you help guide them to make wise investment decisions.
Rewarding smart money moves
How do you guide your teen to make smart crypto investments if you’re still new to this financial asset yourself? How do you sway them away from the social media influencers who try to convince them to invest in meme coins and make risky investing decisions? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.
If you’re part of that 50% of parents who feel like their teen knows more about crypto than you, Stack is, as we mentioned before, an educational platform first and foremost. Both teens and parents have access to Space School within the Stack app, which offers quizzes, learning videos, and more to support your learning. For engaging in learning activities, teen users will get rewarded with Stack coins which they can later redeem for free crypto.
As for social media, it's easy for first-time investors to get swayed in a particular direction. Let us serve as an antidote to some of the advice out there. In the Stack app, teens get rewarded for practicing sustainable investing behaviors, like long-term holding or diversification. These same principles of sustainable investing are applicable across any financial investment, so building a foundation with Stack sets your teen up for other investments they may make later in life.
Get on board
With Stack, teens build healthy financial habits and learn about digital currency. Plus, you can monitor and manage their activity to guide them towards wise investment decisions. Sign up for the Stack waitlist to get early access to the app.