Build Robo Advisor Ellevest Portfolios With ETFs

Learn to build Ellevest's investment portfolios with ETFs. How do they compare against other portfolios?
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What are the Robo Advisor Ellevest porfolios?

The Ellevest portfolios are exposed to between 50% stocks and 50% bonds and 100% stocks and 0% bonds. The Ellevest portfolios are low- to high-risk portfolios and can be built with up to 15 ETFs. For the past 10 years, the Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 8 has returned 9.13 with a standard deviation of 14.79.

The dividend yield is 2.13%. The 30 year return is 9.14%. Last year it returned 12.48%.

Performance of robo-advisor Ellevest portfolios

Here is the return of the Ellevest portfolios when using our timeseries.

NameAsset class countYear to dateReturn in 202010 year returnCAGR since 1989 (%)Risk levelExpense ratio
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 1136.17%9.466.847.5820.07%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 2146.85%9.757.177.8220.07%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 3157.37%9.957.468.1320.07%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 4149.23%11.418.48.7530.06%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 5139.86%11.848.718.9330.06%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 61310.54%12.489.139.1430.06%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 7139.86%11.848.718.9330.06%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 81310.54%12.489.139.1430.06%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 91211.17%13.019.439.330.06%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 101310.54%12.489.139.1430.06%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 111211.17%13.019.439.330.06%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 121211.81%13.499.79.4130.06%

How do Ellevest’s portfolios compare to the best portfolios?

Below you can see the returns of the best portfolios that we have benchmarked.

NameSee PortfolioYear to dateReturn in 202010 year returnCAGR since 1989 (%)Draw Down
Premium Portfolio15.92%18.2913.8410.77-37.63%
Premium Portfolio8.30%18.118.6311.14-44.87%
Premium Portfolio13.48%19.712.8410.49-32.77%
Premium Portfolio20.78%3.198.5210.59-36.46%
Premium Portfolio20.17%3.668.6210.48-36.35%
Premium Portfolio15.18%21.0313.7810.83-37.00%
Premium Portfolio19.24%8.711.5610.65-35.26%
Premium Portfolio15.41%7.488.3910.64-37.91%
Premium Portfolio16.16%5.3610.8811.23-35.43%
Premium Portfolio20.81%3.4210.2110.47-40.85%

Who is Robo Advisor Ellevest?

Ellevest was founded in 2014. It is a roboadvisor explicitly targeting women.

Ellevest competes with many other robo advisor firms such as Betterment, Wealthfront, and Wealthsimple.

Ellevest is fueled by the sentiment that many women feel intimated by investing. Ellevest tries to use empowering words and pictures to draw women to their platform.

Description of robo-advisor Ellevest portfolios

Morningstar builds the Ellevest portfolios. We have seen from the Morningstar’s portfolios that they love to have many asset classes.

Ellevest uses many portfolio asset classes for its portfolios. Ellevest also has many portfolios. They claim to have over a hundred.

For this reason, we decided only to benchmark a selected portion of Ellevest’s portfolios.

Here’s how we selected the portfolios.

We chose the goal of “wealth-building.” Within that goal, we chose the time frames:

  • Five years
  • Ten years
  • Fifteen years
  • Twenty years

Then, within each timeframe, you can select three risk levels

  • Conservative
  • Standard
  • Aggressive

The timeframe tweaks the risk level very slightly.

We thus have 12 portfolios to benchmark (4 timeframes times three risk levels)

We give the portfolios a number ranging from 1 – 12, denoting their risk level. 12 is the portfolio with the most risk.

So portfolio 1 is for a timeframe of 5 years with a conservative level of risk. Portfolios 12 is for a timeframe of 20 years with an aggressive risk level.

Are you confused yet?

It gets even more confusing – hang in there.

Ellevest also has impact portfolios. These are socially responsible investing portfolios (ESG portfolios). They use very particular funds that do not have a long track record. If you want a socially responsible portfolio, we recommend checking our socially responsible investment portfolios that portfolioeinstein.com track.

You don’t need hundreds of portfolios to help your customers.

We are not (yet) tracking Ellevest’s impact portfolios.

Asset class choices

Morningstar, which has built the Ellevest portfolios, uses a lot of asset classes.

  • Ellevest use muni bonds when you are close to your target (lower risk)
  • They use REITs and junk bonds early on to capture as much return as possible
  • They use some very rarely seen asset classes like the high yield municipal bonds (HYD). We use corporate bonds as a proxy for this. They have comparable returns and risk levels.

I was already impressed by the Morningstar portfolios, and Ellevest gives off the same impression.

They come off as being highly asset allocation clever. They use the right tools for the right job.

For all the complexity that the Ellevest portfolios display, some of the portfolios are identical. For example, portfolios 5 and 7 are the same. In Ellevest, these correspond to 10 years till goal on a standard risk level and 15 years till goal on a conservative risk level. The same goes for portfolios 6 and 8. And the same with 8 and 10 and 11 and 9.

Alright, let take a look at the performance.

What is the asset allocation for robo-advisor Ellevest portfolios?

NameTotal US MarketInternational DevelopedLarge Cap ValueMid Cap ValueMid Cap BlendSmall Cap ValueSmall Cap BlendEmerging MarketsREITsCashIntermediate Corp BondsShort Term MunisIntermediate Terms MunisEmerging Market BondsInt. REITs
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 121.00%13.50%4.50%1.00%2.50%1.00%1.00%6.50%1.00%3.00%18.00%25.00%2.00%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 222.50%15.00%5.00%1.00%2.50%1.00%1.00%7.00%1.00%1.00%2.50%15.00%23.50%2.00%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 324.00%14.50%6.00%1.50%2.50%1.00%1.00%8.50%1.00%1.00%2.00%12.50%22.00%1.50%1.00%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 429.00%19.00%7.00%1.50%3.00%1.50%2.50%10.50%1.00%1.00%1.50%5.00%16.50%1.00%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 531.00%20.50%7.50%1.50%3.50%1.50%2.50%11.00%1.00%1.00%3.00%15.00%1.00%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 634.50%21.50%8.00%1.50%3.50%1.50%2.50%11.00%1.00%1.00%1.00%12.00%1.00%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 731.00%20.50%7.50%1.50%3.50%1.50%2.50%11.00%1.00%1.00%3.00%15.00%1.00%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 834.50%21.50%8.00%1.50%3.50%1.50%2.50%11.00%1.00%1.00%1.00%12.00%1.00%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 937.00%23.00%8.00%1.50%3.50%2.00%2.50%11.50%1.00%1.00%8.00%1.00%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 1034.50%21.50%8.00%1.50%3.50%1.50%2.50%11.00%1.00%1.00%1.00%12.00%1.00%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 1137.00%23.00%8.00%1.50%3.50%2.00%2.50%11.50%1.00%1.00%8.00%1.00%
Ellevest Wealthbuilding Portfolio 1239.00%25.00%8.00%1.50%4.00%2.00%3.00%11.50%1.00%1.00%3.00%1.00%

Resources for the robo-advisor Ellevest portfolios

Check out the Ellevest YouTube channel.

Suggestions for your next steps

Finding the correct portfolio is hard. Maintaining your portfolio is also daunting. If you are still in doubt about which portfolio to choose, we suggest you read our article How To Invest Money: 5 Simple Steps That Work For Anyone

If you have already committed to a portfolio – good for you! If you need help maintaining the portfolio you will find our rebalance worksheet useful. Rebalancing your portfolio lowers your risk and may provide higher returns in the long run. It is completely FREE.

You can find the rebalance worksheet in our article Here Is The Most Easy To Use Portfolio Rebalance Tool.

Rebalancing lowers your portfolio risk and may increase your returns.


If you want access to our high-performing portfolios then you need to take a look at the premium portfolios. This is a paid product that gives you the 59 best-performing portfolios since 1989. The portfolios represent a great opportunity for you to have a shot at increasing the returns of your portfolio.

Portfolioeinstein Premium Portfolios
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