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American Association of Individual Investors Review (AAII) 2022

  • By Jenna Gleespen
  • Sep 18, 2022
American Association of Individual Investors
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Follow with our American Association of Individual Investors review to get the scoop on this top-tier newsletter service.

American Association of Individual Investors (AAII) provides top-tier educational resources for budding and established investors.

But can this newsletter service really help you learn to invest?

Our AAII review offers a deep dive into the American Association of Individual Investors, giving you all the details so you can decide if this service is right for you.

American Association of Individual Investors Review

What Is AAII?

An exhaustive educational resource for individual investors, AAII is a non-profit that offers a newsletter service to its members.

James Cloonan founded the non-profit in 1978, and the current CEO of the company is John Bajkowski. 

The education, information, and research platform aims to help you effectively manage your assets and investments.

AAII also provides comprehensive guides on stocks, bonds, ETFs, mutual funds, and much more.

The non-profit also gives you access to stock data through its screeners.

The resources are accessible through the AAII membership.

American Association of Individual Investors Review

Members can access newsletters, educational information, wealth management tips, and investment resources for an annual fee.

AAII offers a 30-day trial membership for just $1 or $2 depending on which tier you choose.

This means investors can try out the resources and publications available from the organization for a very low price.

We will get to more on that later, though.

AAII offers a good deal of educational investing information by way of newsletters, model portfolios, investing ideas, stock screening, stock reports, and the AAII journal.

Let’s take a look at what the American Association of Individual Investors has to offer its customers in more detail.

What’s Included with an AAII Membership?

Each AAII membership includes:

  • Model portfolios
  • Investing ideas
  • Screeners and reports
  • AAII journal

Keep reading our AAII review to find out more about each one.

AII Model Portfolios

AAII members access model portfolios designed to educate investors and target specific investment types.

AAII’s model portfolios are one of the most popular tools on the website because they greatly improve the investment research process.

The four model portfolios offered include: 

  • Shadow Stock portfolio
  • Dividend Investing Portfolio
  • Stock Superstars Report Portfolio
  • VMQ Portfolio

Every portfolio is designed to help members invest more wisely based on academic research and guided investment strategy.

The Shadow Stock Portfolio is especially popular with AAII members and is a great place to start if you are checking out the service.

Let’s look at each model portfolio that the American Association of Individual Investors offers.

Shadow stock portfolio

AAII Shadow Stock Portfolio

The Shadow Stock Portfolio got its start in 1993.

It is a real-money portfolio the nonprofit uses to demonstrate a consistent investment approach.

The goal of this portfolio is to provide investors with investment ideas and investment education.

The Shadow Stock Portfolio follows the investing philosophy of James Cloonan.

According to the AAII website, the philosophy is as follows:

  • “The best stocks for individual investors are not the same stocks that are best for institutions.”
  • “Ultimately, the best returns come from giving major consideration to risk.”
  • “Success comes more from concern for the overall portfolio than for individual stocks.”

AAII Shadow Stock Portfolio Performance

The Model Shadow Stock Portfolio has displayed a solid performance since its inception in 1993.

The average annual rate of return for more than two decades has been close to 15% — not too shabby.

AAII Shadow Stock Portfolio Performance

Dividend Investing Portfolio

This model portfolio will give you investment insight on how to invest dividends successfully.

Dividend Investing Portfolio includes a model portfolio of 24 dividend-paying stocks that are hand-picked by the organization.

Stock Superstars Report Portfolio

This portfolio offers specific advice on securities that are predicted to outperform the market.

This service is based on superstar investors such as Benjamin Graham, Warren Buffett, William O’Neil, and others who have invested wisely and outperformed the market in the past.

VMQ Portfolio

VMQ stands for value, momentum, and quality.

This portfolio seeks out investments with low valuations but strong price momentum that has underlying quality traits.

The VMQ portfolio provides 20 securities that were selected based on these principles.

AAII Investing Ideas

The Investing Ideas on offer include stock ideas, ETF ideas, and mutual fund ideas.

American Association of Individual Investors members can use this service to see which of these investment ideas are top performers.

It also provides commentary and reports that can be used to further investor knowledge.

AAII stock screener

AAII Stock Screener and Reports

An American Association of Individual Investors membership also includes access to stock screens and reports.

These screens can be used to decide which stocks might be worth paying attention to.

The following stock screens are available to AAII members:

  • Factor screens
  • Guru screens
  • Screen power rankings
  • My screens
  • My stocks
  • Stock grades screener

ETF and mutual fund screeners are available as well.

This section of the website also offers reports on the various securities included in each screener.

All AAII screeners are not available for both types of membership.

You can read on to see what each American Association of Individual Investors membership tier includes.

All in all, these are solid investment tools for developing your stock-picking strategy.

Also, with so many screens available, it makes building a diversified portfolio a lot easier.

AAII Journal

The AAII Journal is a leading trade and investment publication that’s been available for over 40 years.

The monthly journal aims to help each member make better decisions investing by providing actionable insights.

This helps investors manage portfolios, create a strong investment strategy, and navigate difficult financial situations.

Even better, the journal is designed for any level of investor.

It offers plenty of resources for financial planning, stock, and trading ideas, as well as information on new opportunities in the market.

The journal is published monthly and delivered straight to members’ doorsteps.

AAII sentiment

AAII Investor Sentiment Survey and AAII Index

If you’re looking for community feedback, members can check out the AAII Index of Bullish, Bearish, and Neutral Outlook, which is published each week under the Sentiment Survey.

This section of the website provides insight into how members feel about the current state of the market.

Members are polled each week and only one vote is allowed per user.

>> Like all that AAII has to offer? Become a member today for as little as $1! <<

How Much Is an AAII Membership?

There are two types of memberships available with AAII.

Let’s take a look at what each tier has to offer.

AAII Membership Cost

This basic membership has fees of $49 per year and includes a 30-day trial for just $1.

The following comes with the basic membership:

  • The AAII Journal, mailed monthly
  • AAII Model Stock Portfolio — available only to members
  • Access to resources and thousands of articles, reports, and commentary via the AAII website
  • Top mutual fund guide
  • Annual tax planning guide
  • Access to AAII Local Chapter meetings
  • AAII Guide to ETFs
  • Weekly stock investment ideas
  • Lifetime investor strategy guide
  • Daily stock ideas
  • 100% money-back guarantee

AAII A+ Investor Cost

The AAII A+ Investor membership costs $189 per year in fees and includes a 30-day trial for just $2.

This tier offers everything the basic membership does in addition to:

  • Stock and fund graders
  • Stock and fund evaluators
  • Guru and factor screeners
  • A thorough diversification analysis
  • Insight tools for each portfolio
  • User challenges
  • Community opportunities
  • A-F stock grades on return, volatility, earnings estimate revisions, expenses, turnover, etc.
  • Data on more than 6,200 stocks and 27,000 funds

The fact that both membership tiers offer a trial period for either $1 or $2 makes it easy to start using the platform with little risk.

AAII Discount?

There is no AAII Discount at the moment for an annual subscription.

However, they have deals that knock out 33% of the bill if you buy three years upfront.

AAII Money-Back Guarantee

AAII memberships are backed by a three-month 100% money-back guarantee.

This means that if you’re dissatisfied with the service at any time during your AAII membership within the first three months, your money will be returned to you with no questions asked.

So with the $1 promotion currently available for individual investors, AAII seems to be a very low-risk purchase.

AAII Lifetime Membership?

AAII does offer a lifetime membership for the surprisingly low price of $390.

That being said, the service doesn’t clarify if this is to the basic subscription or to AAII A+ Investor.

Given that A+ costs a little more than half that per year, it’s safe to say that it’s probably for the basic plan.         

>> Take advantage of the low-cost offer today! Click here to sign up for AAII for just $1! <<

Is AAII Legit?

AAII is legit and provides an exhaustive education and solid stock picks.

Since no funds are deposited with the American Association of Individual Investors, the non-profit seems to be low risk, as it does not invest funds for you.

It only offers resources and advice to make you more skilled at investing in the stock market and more.

Additionally, the performance claims are high, though member reviews back up AAII’s service.

You may be wondering what types of returns you can expect to see from the research and model portfolios on offer.

More on AAII’s Investment Education and Returns

Returns can certainly vary, and profit depends on the specific investments made by each AAII member.

AAII advertises that its Shadow Stock Portfolio has outperformed the market by 3 to 1 over the past 20 years, and this is a significant feat for any portfolio.

However, investors should understand that this type of return is not typical.

Following the investment guidance of this specific portfolio is not a guarantee for future success.

However, one problem with the non-profit is that it seems to be losing money in a significant way.

AAII Financials

Tax returns from 2017, when the organization became a non-profit, show a loss of $170,951.

Customers may worry that continued losses will cause the organization to shut down; however, this does not seem likely to happen anytime soon.

The company is still alive and kicking years after reporting the initial loss.

AAII Pros and Cons

We found a lot of positives to using this service, but there are some downsides as well.

Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of the American Association of Individual Investors.

AAII Pros

  • Exceptional investing educational resources, including learning to buy or sell stocks
  • Four model portfolios
  • Stock and ETF screeners
  • A good selection of stock screeners and fund screeners
  • Plenty of resources for learning about investing
  • Access to monthly AAII Local Chapter meetings
  • $1 or $2 30-day trials available
  • 100% money-back guarantee

AAII Cons

  • An analysis of actual returns from the model portfolio is somewhat difficult to find
  • No wealth management service
  • The recent financial difficulties of the company raise concerns

Is AAII Right for Me?

If you’re interested in learning more about investing, want to start investing but don’t know where to begin, or are a seasoned investor looking for more information, then AAII may be right for you.

The stock screeners, monthly journal, and investment ideas could help an investor make more financially sound decisions when investing in the stock market.

However, if you are looking for quick and easy profit this service is likely not for you.

Members will need to take the time to read through a good amount of material and research that is available on the website, in the newsletter, and in the magazine to truly find success investing with the guidance of AAII.

AAII teaches members how to manage assets through programs that have a good track record for success.

While the service may not tell you whether to buy or sell, AAII’s commitment to providing quality financial information appears to have the potential to be of great use to short-term and long-term investors.

Also, the very low-cost 30-day trial is a great way for anyone to start learning about investing.

The annual fees for either tier of membership are lower than many programs of education information on the web as well.

>> Think AAII is right for you? Become a member today for just $1 by clicking here! <<

AAII Reviews by Members

Reviews from members are generally positive.

Many are happy with the newsletter and the wealth of information available.

Reviewers claim that information comes from a reliable source and that its educational resources on investment and personal finance are the best in the market.

Most of all, reviewers praise the volumes of information available to members, including its stock tips.

One of the comments from a member even states that AAII is the best value he has found in over 50 years of investing.

There were a few bad reviews, with most of the negative ones stating that the paid service is not much better than the free service offered.

However, it seems that with the paid membership, there is quite a lot of unique content available.

AAII reviews

Who Is AAII For? 

AAII is perfect for people who want to learn:

  • The ins and outs of investing, including what stocks to buy, how to use proper analysis, and education on mutual funds and other investment types
  • Wealth management tips and guidance
  • How to use AAII tools, including the stock screener, and resources to boost performance

Is AAII Membership Worth It?

AAII’s service seems to be a great source of financial information when it comes to investing.

The nonprofit organization’s goal is to help investors learn more about the market and make sound financial decisions.

AAII’s features such as stock screening, model portfolios, investment ideas, and reports all appear to be very useful.

And its 30-day free trial means there’s no risk in testing out the service.

Thats all for this American Association of Individual Investors Review. If you want to get started with AAII click the link below!

>> Ready to become an AAII member for just $1? Click here to sign up now! <<

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Jenna Gleespen is a published author and copywriter specializing in personal and investment finance. Her expertise is in financial product reviews and stock market education.