Compare Top Junior Stocks & Shares ISA

We have narrowed down the best Junior stocks and shares ISAs which let you invest money for your child in a tax-efficient wrapper. Compare junior investment ISA providers and read our reviews to get the best children’s stocks and shares ISA so they can earn the best returns with the lowest costs.

Best Junior Investment ISA

Nutmeg JISANutmeg

✔️ Simple to use
✔️ Low cost
✔️ FSCS protected

Nutmeg wins best Junior investment ISA as they offer an easy to open, low cost, FCA regulated JISA with different risk/reward pre-built portfolios.

What is a Junior Stocks & Shares ISA (JISA)?

The Junior stocks and shares ISA is a tax-efficient vehicle through which family and friends can save money on behalf of a child and do so from the ISA’s inception until the child’s 18 birthday, by which time they could have a nice little nest egg of their own.

It is important to note that unlike adult investment ISAs you can only have one Junior Investment ISA account rather than multiple plans with different providers however you can transfer funds between providers.

Interactive Investor Junior ISA

Investment Options

  • Stocks
  • Bonds
  • ETFs
  • Funds

JISA Costs

  • Account Fee: £0
  • Regular: £7.99
  • Discount: £3.99

Interactive Investor Junior ISA Review

The Junior ISA is a stock and shares ISA for those under the age of 18 away for children to save and for others to help them save on their behalf. The funds in junior ISA only become available to the child when they reach their 18th Birthday.

Currently, up to £9000.00 per annum can be invested into a Junior ISA year and any trading profits are free from UK capital gains tax.

There are no additional costs in opening a Junior SIPP for existing II customers and their standard dealing charges apply.

Junior ISAs can invest in the full range of II’s ISA eligible securities and can take advantage of IIs pre-selected ranges of funds and thematic investments.

Read our full Interactive Investor review here

Hargreaves Lansdown Junior ISA

Investment Options

  • Stocks
  • Bonds
  • ETFs
  • Funds

JISA Costs

  • Account Fee: 0.45%
  • Regular: £11.95
  • Discount: £5.95

Hargreaves Lansdown Junior ISA Review

The HL junior ISA allows you to start saving for your children’s future. You can choose from a range of funds or from one of their ready-made portfolios. These can be managed depending on your specific investment goals. You can invest from as little as £25 per month or a £100 lump sum.

There are no charges for setting up a Hargreaves Lansdown junior ISA or for buying or selling funds. They do charge an annual fee of 0.45% to hold funds and shares and £5.95 per deal with online share dealing. You can invest in a wide range of investments including funds, shares and bonds. You can also hold cash so you can secure the tax break now and choose investments later.

The rules for Junior ISAs are slightly different than seniors. They have to be opened by a parent or guardian and your child can only access it once they turn 18, after which they can continue saving or withdraw the money. It’s a good way to get a head start with university or perhaps put down towards a deposit for a house. There is a maximum limit on Junior ISA investments of up to £9,000 in a single tax year.

Read our full Hargreaves Lansdown review here

AJ Bell Youinvest Junior ISA

Investment Options

  • Stocks
  • Bonds
  • ETFs
  • Funds

JISA Costs

  • Account Fee: 0.25% yearly
  • Dealing charge: From £1.50 per online deal
  • Discount: £4.95 for shares, where there were 10 or more online share deals in the previous month
  • US Shares: £9.95 plus FX charges

AJ Bell Youinvest Junior ISA Review

A Junior ISA is a tax-efficient way of saving for your child’s adult life. As with an adult ISA, a Junior ISA shelters your child’s investments from capital gains and income tax.

You can open a Junior ISA for a child if they’re under 18, and you’re their parent, or in a position of parental responsibility. The annual allowance is currently £9,000. Once you open a Junior ISA for your child, you become the ‘registered contact’, and are responsible for managing the account. When your child turns 18, control of the account passes to them.

Advantages of AJ Bell Youinvest’s Junior ISA include:

  • A wide range of investments – you can invest in shares, funds, and ETFs.
  • Low fees – you can buy and sell investments from just £1.50.

Charges and fees are listed below.

Junior ISA fees

Buying and selling investments (per deal)   
Funds (including unit trusts and OEICs) online£1.50  
Shares (including investment trusts, ETFs, gilts, and bonds)£9.95  
Shares, where there were 10 or more share deals in the previous month£4.95  
Funds custody charge (including unit trusts, OEICs, and structured products)   
On the first £250,000 of funds0.25%  
For funds between £250,000 and £1m0.10%  
For funds between £1m and £2m0.05%  
For funds over £2mNo charge  
Shares custody charge (including investment trusts, ETFs, gilts, and bonds)0.25%(max £3.50 per month)

 The main attraction of this Junior ISA, relative to competitors’ products, is the wide range of investments available. On the downside, fees are higher than those offered by some other providers. Vanguard, for example, offers an annual charge of 0.15%.

Read our full AJ Bell Youinvest review here

Beanstalk Junior ISA

Investment Options

  • Funds
  • Cash

JISA Costs

  • Account Fee: 0.5%

Beanstalk Junior ISA Review

The Beanstalk Junior ISA provides a simple way to invest for your children’s future. Friends and family can also make deposits directly into your child’s account via the app. The investment options are split between cash and the stock market enabling parents to adjust the level of risk they are prepared to take.

Read our interview with Beanstalk CEO Julian Robson

Nutmeg Junior ISA

Investment Options

  • Funds

JISA Costs

  • Account Fee: 0.35% – 0.75%

Nutmeg Junior ISA Review

Nutmeg’s Junior ISA looks suitable for investors who are willing to take at least a medium level of risk. The JISA is low cost enough not to worry about fees but for those with small sums (less than £5,000) or who are unwilling to take a medium level of risk or above, there may be more suitable alternatives.

Again, for those with large sums there is not relief on investment charges, so better value alternatives might be out there.

Nutmeg scores highly for customer service and it is undoubtedly clear on fees and charges, and the company literature steers clear of jargon. The website offers plenty of tools and information to support investors, too.

Junior Stocks & Shares ISAs Explained

As well as the providers mentioned above there are many other companies that offer the Junior stocks and shares ISAs. Many of these will be familiar household names including fund managers such as Fidelity and Vanguard, Legal and General and Standard Life Aberdeen for example.

Stockbrokers such as Hargreaves Lansdown, Charles Stanley, AJ Bell, Interactive Investor and Redmayne Bentley and others also offer Junior Investment ISA accounts. In fact, you can even open a Junior Investment ISA account through the Post Office.

Charges and fees and minimum investment and regular savings amounts can vary between plans and providers so it’s best to do your homework but it’s fair to say that all this competition between providers helps to keep those costs in check.

How does a Junior Stocks & Shares ISA work?

The Junior Investment ISA is based on the same principle as its adult peers that is it is a government-sponsored tax-free savings vehicle, within which, up to a predetermined sum of money can be invested and not be subject to either income or capital gains taxes while it remains in the shelter.

ISAs or Individual Savings Accounts were introduced by the government to encourage long term saving and the Junior ISAs were an extension of those goals.

The amount of money that can be invested in a Junior Investment ISA each year is set by the Chancellor of the Exchequer, however, for the tax year 2019/20 (which runs until April 5th, 2020) the figure is £4368.00.

Money can be invested in a Junior Investment ISA for a maximum of 18 years during which time it has the potential to compound and grow.

Note though that money invested in a Junior Investment ISA cannot be withdrawn until the child’s 18th birthday when it reverts to the child.

How can I open a Junior Stocks and Shares ISA?

Applying for a Junior Investment ISA is typically done by parents, grandparents or legal guardian on behalf of their child or loved one. The parent or guardian looks after the ISA on behalf of the young person although in truth the day to day admin is largely managed by the ISA provider the application process which can usually be completed online is quite straightforward and involves some simple form filling with information such as names and addresses, national insurance numbers and bank account or debit card details.

Parents and guardians can add a lump sum to the Junior Investment ISA of up to the tax-free allowance.  Or they can opt to make an initial deposit and then monthly savings thereafter Minimum contribution levels may vary between Junior ISA providers.

However, parents decide to fund the Junior Investment ISA the key point is that no more than the tax-free allowance can be invested within a given tax year.

Use our comparison to choose the best children’s ISA account for your needs and apply online today.

What can you invest in through a Junior Stocks & Shares ISA?

Unlike the Cash ISA, the Junior Investment ISA has a lot more freedom to invest and indeed it’s specifically designed to allow managers to invest in stocks and shares, managed funds, ETFs etc. The full list of instruments you can invest in on behalf of your child or loved one will vary from provider to provider and so it is definitely worth checking out what is and isn’t permissible with a particular manager before you apply for a Junior Investment ISA. In order to ensure the type of investments you have in mind are covered by that provider.

For example, Hargreaves Lansdown offers Junior Investment ISA accounts access to 3000 funds, UK and Overseas shares and a range of investment trusts and ETFs. Whilst Scottish Friendly simplifies matters by offering Junior Investment ISA accounts a choice of eight managed funds with varying risk profiles to invest in.

What are the major benefits of using a Junior Stocks and Shares ISA?

The main benefit of Junior Investment ISA is undoubtedly the tax-free shelter it provides for savings. Long term capital growth could see the money invested into Junior Investment ISA appreciate over the lifetime of the account which can run to 18 years.

With regular investment and the right market, a Junior Investment ISA could grow very nicely indeed, if it’s invested correctly and all those gains will be made free of taxes. Something that would be very difficult to achieve outside of the vehicle.

What’s more, the Junior Investment ISA is specifically designed to allow minors to save money for a time in their life when they may need a lump sum perhaps to help towards university tuition fees, to fund driving lessons or the purchase of the car. The funds invested grow inside the tax-free shelter and can’t be accessed until the child’s 18 birthday and remain beyond temptations reach until then.

The Junior Investment ISA provides much more flexibility than its savings counterpart, meaning the funds invested in the ISA can be optimised for long-term capital growth which is likely to be the investment strategy most applicable for a minor investing for the future.

What are the risks of using a Junior Stocks & Shares ISA?

The main risk in using Junior Investment ISA is the market risk of the investments within it. Stock and shares and associated funds can rise as well as fall in value and if financial markets take a turn for the worse then it’s possible that you could lose money rather than grow it for your children.

That said risk and reward are two sides of the same coin and regular saving for the longer term has been shown to be an effective way to grow our money and a well-diversified strategy can often outperform cash on deposit, which is usually seen as the risk-free alternative to stock market investment and saving.

The other consideration is that money invested in a Junior Investment ISA is locked away for the full term of the plan that is until the 18th birthday of the beneficiary. So, you won’t be able to dip into those funds on a rainy day and top them up later, as they are completely ring-fenced from you.

Are Junior Stocks & Shares ISAs covered by the FSCS?

The FSCS or Financial Services Compensation Scheme was set up by parliament and is funded by the financial services industry and it can compensate eligible investors in the event of fraud or insolvency. Under current legislation, the scheme can payout up to £85,000 for savings accounts and £50,000 on investment accounts. A Junior Investment ISA would fall into the latter category, so in the event of the provider of the ISA or the custodian of the assets becoming insolvent, the FSCS would step in.

The implicit guarantee provided by the fund and the tax-free benefits of the shelter certainly helps to make the Junior Stocks and shares ISA an attractive proposition when considering investment for the next generation.

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