Ally Invest

Execs & Cons

professionals

  • Affords self-directed investing in addition to a robo-advisor service and wealth administration.
  • Charges charged for choices trades and no-load mutual funds are under trade averages.
  • Ally Make investments affords one of the beneficiant new account bonuses within the trade, at as much as $3,000.
  • Customer support is obtainable 24/7 by telephone and stay chat. Affords auto loans, mortgages and private loans.

cons

  • Not obtainable to non-US residents
  • The 0.30% annual advisory payment for the Market-Targeted robo-advisor Portfolio is barely above the trade common of 0.25%.
  • Ally Make investments robo-advisor portfolios require a minimal of $100 to start investing.
  • Doesn’t provide fractional shares, which might negatively have an effect on small buyers.
  • Restricted choices for self-employed retirement plans.

Ally Make investments Bonuses Promotions

As per Ally Make investments assessment and our analysis, we are able to say that the promotion from Ally for creating and financing an account is a superb perk and its goal is to persuade you to commerce incessantly. Once you deposit funds into a brand new account, the dealer incessantly supplies a few of the largest promotional incentives. When you’ve obtained the bonus, you could maintain it in your account for no less than 300 days, along with the qualifying deposit (minus any buying and selling losses).

Ally additionally supplies a much less evident bonus. In the event you add no less than $2,500 to your Ally Make investments account, the dealer can pay as much as $150 on your shift from one other royalty account for brokerages. That’s precise cash that you just gained’t must pay for those who select to relocate to Ally.

Ally Make investments Loyalty Program

Prime-performing sellers that preserve a excessive degree of engagement throughout all strains of enterprise and preserve a wholesale floorplan relationship with Ally are invited to affix Ally’s unique Champions Membership providing nice advantages to their purchasers.

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Is Ally Make investments protected?

On condition that Ally Make investments additionally affords banking providers, Ally Make investments is a member of each FINRA and SIPC, providing safety on buyer accounts within the occasion of a dealer’s chapter. It’s vital to know that, as with all dealer, such insurance coverage doesn’t shield in opposition to market losses — investing is a dangerous endeavor.

General abstract

FunctionAlly Make investments
General 4 Stars
Commissions & Charges 4.5 Stars
Platforms & Instruments 3 Stars
Analysis 3 Stars
Cell Buying and selling Apps 3.5 Stars
Providing of Investments 4.5 Stars
Schooling 3.5 Stars
Ease of Use 4.5 Stars

–> View Ally Invest Features List

Ally Make investments options

A number of investing strategies

Once you make investments by way of the self-managed choice with Ally, you possibly can select between a lot of investments. In the event you open a managed portfolio, you might have some company in what you select to spend money on, however the precise firms are chosen by Ally. 

Right here’s a little bit bit extra about every of Ally’s investing choices:

Shares

Stocks are one of the widespread investments as you absolutely know. Once you personal a inventory, you personal a chunk of the corporate the inventory is for. Ally affords 1000’s of shares to select from. So many 1000’s of shares, you possibly can actually choose and select from right here to the moon and again!

ETFs

ETFs are completely different in that they allow you to spend money on a complete trade, reasonably than simply particular firms. One other means to consider it’s that ETFs are made up of securities like shares and bonds.

Kudos to Ally – as they had been VERY useful once I researched ETFs – they even provide “the anatomy of an ETF.” 

You can view the complete list of ETFs Ally offers

You possibly can view the entire checklist of ETFs Ally affords – so you possibly can deliberate what you need to select.

Choices

Choices buying and selling will be tough to know, and they’re actually solely utilized by superior buyers. In quite simple phrases, an choice provides you (the customer) the facility to purchase shares (and different investments) at a set value for a set period of time, irrespective of how the value fluctuates.

Once more, choices should not for newbie buyers. Actually, Ally makes you learn an choices disclosure so the dangers.

Bonds

A bond is basically a mortgage to the federal government or an organization, which earns you earnings by way of curiosity funds. I used to be actually completely satisfied to see that Ally has respectable pricing on bonds, at simply $1 per bond, with a $10 minimal.

Candy.

Mutual funds

Mutual funds are the proper investments for much less seasoned buyers. They maintain quite a lot of investments in a single fund, so that they diversify your portfolio and decrease how a lot threat you carry as an investor.

Free investing for managed and self-directed accounts

That is clearly one of many BEST options of Ally Make investments. They’re one of many few investing platforms that supply no commissions on self-directed buying and selling AND no annual payment for his or her robo-advisor.

I’m gonna repeat myself once more – that is CRAZY.

  1. Ally affords NO COMMISSIONS on self-directed buying and selling
  2. Ally affords NO ANNUAL FEE for his or her robo-advisor

Aside from the $100 minimal to take a position, I didn’t must pay something to begin investing.

And that was the kick I wanted to discover a robo-advisor!

Money buffer

Once you make investments by way of Ally’s managed portfolios, you possibly can select a cash-enhanced portfolio that units apart 30% of your portfolio in an interest-earning money buffer.

This can be a good choice for many who are severely risk-averse – which many people – myself included are.

That means, within the occasion that each one your different investments go south, you no less than have that 30% buffer that has been rising over time.

Gulp – 30% is protected.

Ally’s low minimal funding for managed portfolios

I wasn’t upset in any respect that I needed to pay $100 to get began investing with Ally.

I’ve used spare change investing apps like Stash, however after some time, the returns simply don’t add as much as as a lot as I’d like. Getting actual returns in your funding takes money and time.

Plus, big-name firms like Vanguard and Constancy have minimums within the 1000’s. Ally’s minimal is minuscule in comparison with theirs.

Usability

Ally Make investments platforms work effectively, although the know-how is a bit dated and there could also be a couple of display screen/platform required on the similar time. The preliminary web site logon all the time brings you to the first Ally dwelling display screen, which exhibits all associated accounts throughout the Ally Platform, so financial institution accounts, auto or dwelling loans, particular person accounts, managed accounts, and so forth. would all be proven on this web page. You’ll then click on on the person funding account to maneuver to the Ally Make investments dwelling net web page for that account; you possibly can toggle between managed and self-directed brokerage accounts from the Ally Make investments web page. 

The highest of the Ally Make investments homepage additionally has a hyperlink to launch the Ally Make investments Reside platform, which has streaming quotes and extra fashionable web site performance. The first web site, even when a bit dated, nonetheless works effectively and is responsive, with very fast web page refreshes. The menus on the high of the web site web page had been very intuitive and straightforward to make use of, normally exhibiting no less than two ranges of submenus for the subject chosen. There have been, nevertheless, a number of instances when the highest menu bar disappeared; though hitting the Ally brand on the highest of the web page brings you again to the account abstract web page, dropping the first menu was disorienting.

The Reside platform has person customization choices for the appear and feel. As talked about, the cell app and Ally Make investments Reside are streaming and have a extra fashionable and strong design. Nevertheless, neither of those platforms had all performance options within the main web site. Solely the ETF screener is obtainable on the Reside platform, and not one of the screeners are on the cell app. Likewise, choices buying and selling and evaluation instruments for possibilities, profitability graphing, and pricing, in addition to legacy instruments from the TradeKing platform, should not obtainable on Reside or the cell app. The charting can also be higher on the Reside platform than the web site or cell platforms. 

This makes for a little bit of a hodge-podge of various platforms for various issues. All that being stated, the menus and navigational performance are intuitive and work effectively. It was very straightforward to convey up buying and selling home windows, information, charts, and so forth., for securities listed on a watch checklist or a consequence from one of many screeners. Talking of watch lists, they continue to be constant throughout the web site and streaming platforms. For these buying and selling overseas trade, there may be one more platform to make use of for foreign exchange. It’s, nevertheless, fairly normal for brokerage firms providing foreign money buying and selling to make use of a devoted platform-specific to that market.

How one can Contact Ally Make investments

Ally Make investments customer support is obtainable by Reside Chat and by telephone (1-855-880-2559), 24 hours a day, seven days every week.

The corporate will be contacted by e-mail at support@invest.ally.com.

Buying and selling Expertise

Buying and selling know-how at Ally Make investments is completely purposeful, however the web site is considerably dated and would profit from the addition of options corresponding to conditional orders and trailing stops. The platforms all help four-leg choices methods. The first web site doesn’t present streaming quotes, which appears normal on many platforms now. Order entry was primary, and there’s no integration of positions or orders into charts. Furthermore, there isn’t any order automation or management over order routing at Ally Make investments. 

The first Ally Make investments web site serves because the hyperlink to Ally Financial institution, which most would make the most of for the aim of gaining curiosity on money balances; and Ally Financial institution affords a few of the finest short-term charges obtainable. Choices buying and selling is completely different on the completely different platforms, too, with the Ally Make investments web site required to make use of all of the instruments. This contains the power to see possibilities for a market staying in or shifting exterior of a user-defined vary and date, in addition to profitability graphs for various dates to see the value graph of the choice in comparison with the revenue graph at maturity. Whereas not the perfect of sophistication, these instruments are useful and should not generally provided by on-line brokerage platforms.

Ally Make investments Buyer Help

As per Ally Make investments assessment and our analysis, we are able to say that customer service on the web site is one thing Ally excels at. The brokerage agency affords search telephone help 24 hours a day, seven days every week, in addition to a web-based chat facility that lets you shortly entry and work together with a consultant. Brokers also can make the most of extra conventional methods like e-mail, however they will be unable to go to a bodily web site for cooperation.

This latter level, however, is unlikely to be a deal-breaker for buyers. Ally has a complete customer support system in place, which incorporates stay chat and telephone cooperation. The shopper care line for funding advisors or Ally is open 24 hours a day, seven days every week. The display screen exhibits present wait instances, permitting you to plan your calls accordingly.

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Usability: How Consumer-Pleasant is Ally Make investments?

Ally Make investments has a very minimalistic interface that’s fairly straightforward to make use of for even essentially the most technically unsavvy particular person. Whether or not you’re utilizing the cell app or browser, the signup course of for Ally Make investments is simple.

Do not forget that Ally Make investments is online-only. On the time of writing, there are no bodily branches. In the event you really feel unnerved by not with the ability to stroll right into a bodily department to deal with your affairs, you would possibly desire a special funding platform.

Their customer support, which is obtainable by way of telephone or e-mail, is fairly top-notch. General, Ally Make investments’s usability scores an 8 out of 10.

How to enroll in Ally Make investments

You possibly can join Ally Make investments both by way of its web site or by way of Ally’s cell app. Once you enroll, you’ll want to offer your social safety quantity, contact data, employment data, and basic monetary data to get permitted for an account.

PRO TIP: When signing up for an Ally Make investments account, all the time be sure to’re on the right webpage by inspecting the URL in your browser’s deal with bar. It ought to say https://ally.com (that’s two Ls). You must also verify for the padlock icon in your browser. By no means present any delicate data to a webpage that you just’re unsure is the official web site.

Right here’s how one can join an Ally Make investments account by way of the cell app:

  1. Go to Apple’s App Store, or Google Play to obtain the Ally Make investments app.
  2. Choose the kind of portfolio you’d prefer to create. For this one, we chosen Investing & Retirement.
  3. Choose the sort of accounts you’d be eager about: self-directed accounts or ones which can be chosen with automated advisors.
  4. Reply the questions that present as much as make your funding objectives clear.
  5. Present the required data, together with your social safety quantity, earnings data, and different figuring out information.
  6. Arrange biometrics and multi-factor authentication.

And that’s it! Your account is now arrange and prepared for use.

Software program usability and choices

As soon as your Ally Make investments account has been permitted, you’ll must hyperlink your financial institution and fund the account. We’ve run by way of a few orders to present you an concept of the interface and ease of buying and selling throughout the app.

The app is fairly simple. We had been capable of act on a few trades inside a matter of minutes utilizing their Fast Commerce perform.

It was comparatively straightforward to arrange an account and begin buying and selling utilizing Ally Make investments.

Danger-assessment

As a result of Ally Make investments makes use of payment-for-order-flow, it makes more cash for those who place extra orders on the platform. Nevertheless, Ally hasn’t been identified for predatory practices, not like massive names like Robinhood.

As an alternative, it affords an array of academic instruments on its platform, in addition to screeners, so you possibly can fastidiously assessment your trades earlier than you make one. On the Reside platform, yow will discover the ETF screener. Importantly, choices buying and selling and analytical instruments can be found for graphing profitability. Nevertheless, screeners, choices buying and selling, and different superior choices instruments are not obtainable within the cell app. This implies your expertise will differ relying on the platform you select.

Nevertheless, given the vary of academic sources obtainable on the platform, we’re assured that buyers have enough sources obtainable earlier than executing a commerce.

Pricing and costs

Ally Make investments doesn’t cost a payment for its self-directed accounts. Nevertheless, there are another charges it is best to find out about:

  • Price per inventory commerce: $0
  • OTCBB (and shares under $2.00): $4.95 + $0.01 per share (most fee per order can’t exceed 5% of commerce worth)
  • Foreign exchange: no fee
  • Choices: $0.5 per contract + $0.5 payment for low-value choices positions
  • Robo-managed accounts: minimal $100 funding. Annual 0.30% administration payment for robo-created portfolios.
  • Account closure: no payment
  • Home wire transfers: $30 for sending, none for receiving wire transfers
  • Checks: $5 to ship a verify
  • Upkeep or inactivity payment: none
  • Mutual funds: $9.95 per no-load commerce
  • Dealer-assisted trades: $20 per commerce
  • Full outgoing switch payment: $50

The charges for margin curiosity will be discovered under:

  • Underneath $25,000 at 7.75%
  • $50,000 at 7.5%
  • $100,000 at 6.75%
  • $250,000 at 5.50%
  • $500,000 at 4.50%
  • $1 million at 4%
  • Over $1 million at 3.25%

Customer support

For an online-only brokerage, we had been hoping Ally Make investments would have a stay chat. Sadly, this isn’t the case on the time of writing, neither within the app nor on the web site. Nevertheless, Ally Make investments does provide a 24/7 telephone quantity that has confirmed to be wonderful.

We tried inquiring about encryption protocols on the location and app, and a consultant was capable of give us a strong reply in effectively beneath 5 minutes.

Be aware that you’ll want to present some private information so customer support reps can affirm that they’re talking with the account holder. We had to offer our full title, the final 4 digits of our social safety quantity, and another safety questions solely account holders would know.

WARNING: Watch out about giving data to customer support

In the event you’re speaking on the telephone, make certain it was you who initiated contact. Be certain to name the designated quantity on the Ally Make investments web site or app. This manner, you will be certain you’re speaking to an official Ally Make investments consultant. There are numerous Assist Desk and different social engineering scams on the market that search to pry monetary information from victims.

If a customer support consultant calls you over the telephone, by no means give them your private data, even when they declare it’s an pressing matter.

Ally Make investments Robo Portfolios

With a minimal of $100, you may get a cash-enhanced portfolio with virtually no charges – no advisory charges, no annual charges, and no rebalancing charges. They do that as a result of they set 30% of your portfolio into money, incomes a price of curiosity corresponding to their on-line financial savings account. Charles Schwab Clever Portfolios operates this fashion too – no payment however it’s important to put a set proportion of your allocation into money. The upside of the money allocation at Ally is that it is near the prevailing price you’d get with a financial savings account although you possibly can’t get entry it as simply as you’ll a financial savings account.

If you wish to keep away from the money allocation, you may get a “market-focused” Robo Portfolio nevertheless it additionally comes with a 0.30% annual advisory payment, charged month-to-month. With market-focused, you continue to have money (roughly 2% of your stability) however a lot a lot much less of it. 0.30% is much like what different robo-advisors cost – for instance, Vanguard’s Personal Advisor Service prices 0.30% on belongings as much as $5 million.

With Robo Portfolios, you reply some questions on your objectives, they’re going to construct a mixture of ETFs that meet your objectives, after which you possibly can tweak it as you want.

Moreover, you possibly can choose from 4 portfolio choices:

  • Core: “Extremely diversified throughout home, worldwide, and fixed-income belongings. You possibly can select the quantity of threat you’re comfy with, from conservative to aggressive. In the event you’re extra of a hands-off investor, contemplate this portfolio kind.”
  • Earnings: “This portfolio kind affords larger dividend yields whereas sustaining a extra conservative threat profile. Think about this portfolio kind for those who’re most targeted on yield and earnings.”
  • Tax-Optimized: “In the event you make after-tax contributions to an funding account, any such IRA might assist maximize your investments. In the event you’re trying to make investments utilizing a various mixture of tax-advantaged, low-cost Trade Traded Funds, contemplate this portfolio kind.”
  • Socially Accountable: “Formed by firms with moral monitor data, you’ll solely spend money on companies that actively observe sustainability, vitality effectivity, or different environmentally pleasant initiatives. Think about this portfolio kind if eco-friendly practices are vital to you.”

Then, their techniques (and other people) monitor your portfolio and rebalance as wanted. It is much like the robo-advisory providers of different firms (in idea).

Learn more about Ally Invest Robo Portfolios

Execs: The place Ally Make investments stands out

Low buying and selling prices

Choices merchants shall be happy with Ally’s providing. Its regular fee construction is $0.50 per contract, among the many finest undiscounted costs for trades within the trade, the place the usual is normally $0.65 per contract. If you need low cost choices trades with out having to commerce in quantity to realize a reduction, Ally is a good selection. Right this moment, the one locations cheaper are Robinhood and Webull, which provide a no-commission construction for all merchandise. 

Ally prices $0 for inventory and ETF trades, placing it inline with different main on-line brokers. In the meantime, commissions on bond trades are $1 per bond, with a $10 minimal per commerce. 

Integration with Ally

Ally Make investments’s integration is a bonus for present Ally prospects, and permits them to consolidate their monetary accounts inside one establishment, as you possibly can see with the cell app. That may be nice for transfers between accounts, decreasing delays on money strikes between a financial institution and dealer, for instance. It may be handy to easily have your accounts in a single place when tax time arrives. Typically, Ally Make investments finally ends up feeling like simply one other tab on the dashboard of the whole Ally web site.

Ally Make investments Robo Portfolios is an alternative choice for these trying to take an automatic method to investing. For only a $100 minimal funding, Robo Portfolios will make investments based mostly in your objectives and robotically rebalance your portfolio each day. 

Buyer help

Ally actually steps up on this class. The dealer affords 24/7 telephone help and a web-based chat perform to shortly route you to a consultant. There’s additionally extra typical means, corresponding to e-mail, although prospects don’t have the choice of going to a bodily department for help. However this latter level in all probability shouldn’t be a deal-breaker for many buyers.

Signal-on promotions

Ally’s promotion for opening and funding an account is a pleasant incentive. The dealer typically affords some of the highest promotional bonuses if you convey cash to a brand new account. When you’ve obtained the bonus, you’ll have to carry it and the qualifying deposit (minus any buying and selling losses) within the account for no less than 300 days.

Ally additionally affords one other much less apparent bonus, too. The dealer can pay on your switch out of one other brokerage account as much as $150, so long as you convey no less than $2,500 to your Ally Make investments account. That’s actual money that doesn’t come out of your pocket for those who determine to maneuver to Ally.

Who shouldnt use Ally Make investments?

The one individuals who might not like Ally Make investments are actually actually superior buyers. Ally’s website generally is a little clunky in spots, they usually nonetheless don’t have as many instruments or skilled advisors as brokers like Vanguard, Constancy, and Charles Schwab.

Security: Is Ally Make investments Safe?

In the event you’re searching for a sturdy on-line buying and selling app that takes person safety severely, Ally Make investments makes the lower. It will get an 8.5 on 10 from us. Ally Monetary, Ally Make investments’s mum or dad firm has a strong “A” score from impartial cybersecurity reviewer UpGuard — scoring 817 out of 950.

Ally takes vital cybersecurity steps wanted to guard its on-line portal and platforms from exterior hacks and assaults. It additionally supplies customers with the options wanted to guard their accounts from unauthorized entry.

Ally Make investments security measures

As an online-only brokerage, Ally Make investments affords greater than the typical platform with regard to safety. Whereas this contains superior security measures, you’ll even have entry to premium malware, safety, and different providers if you enroll as an Ally Financial institution buyer.

Right here’s a rundown of what Ally Make investments affords you security-wise:

  • Two-factor authentication: Utilizing a code despatched to your e-mail, cell phone, or authentication app, Ally Make investments can provide a further layer of safety for logins or additional identification verification. You might also be prompted to reply a safety query you arrange throughout registration.
  • Biometric logins: For cell logins, customers can use fingerprint or facial recognition scans.
  • Strong firewalls and Safe Socket Layering (SSL) encryption: SSL encryption creates a safe connection between your browser and Ally Make investments’s website or app platform. This implies all the information you transmit (passwords, transactions, and monetary information) is secured and unreadable to outsiders. If the web site determines your connection is suspicious for any motive (corresponding to flagged unsecured public Wi-Fi connections) it could block entry.
  • Computerized logouts: After prolonged intervals of inactivity, Ally Make investments robotically logs you out to maintain any potential unauthorized customers from accessing your account.
  • Failed logins: Ally Make investments will robotically block entry to your account after a sure variety of failed makes an attempt. You’ll must contact buyer help to get again in. This could shield you in opposition to brute force attacks and password-guessing software program.
  • Antivirus and malware safety: Along with secured firewalls, Ally Make investments makes use of top-tier antivirus and antimalware safety. In the event you join Ally Financial institution, it additionally supplies customers Webroot antivirus and malware safety for as much as three gadgets.

Is your cash protected with Ally Make investments?

So far as cyberattacks and safety from unauthorized customers go, your Ally Make investments account shall be protected. You’ll simply must be sure to use all of Ally Make investments’s security measures talked about above. Ally Make investments doesn’t have a blanket coverage on unauthorized exercise in buyer accounts and usually handles them on a case-by-case foundation.

We’re followers of Ally Financial institution’s On-line & Cell Safety Assure. In the event you discover any fraudulent or unauthorized transactions on-line or by way of the app, you gained’t be held liable so long as you report it by calling 1-877-247-2559 inside 60 days from when the assertion was made obtainable.

Within the case of Ally Monetary or Ally Make investments’s chapter, your funds are protected by government-approved organizations and authorities companies:

  • Securities Investor Safety Company (SIPC): Any main brokerage must be lined by the SIPC. Your securities are protected as much as $500,000 or $250,000 in money. Ally Make investments affords an “extra” of SIPC protection by way of Lloyd’s of London, as effectively — as much as $150 million after SIPC is exhausted.
  • SEC-regulated: Ally Make investments is regulated by the Securities and Trade Fee (SEC). The SEC is a authorities company that enforces United States monetary legal guidelines, imposes penalties and takes different authorized motion in opposition to perpetrators, and regulates monetary markets.
  • FINRA membership: Ally Make investments can also be a member of the Monetary Business Regulatory Authority (FINRA). FINRA is a government-approved nonprofit that works with the SEC and prevents investor losses, abroad brokers, and identifies fraud and different misconduct.

Has Ally had an information breach?

Ally Make investments has loved a strong monitor file in regard to cybersecurity. There have been no information breaches or important assaults on its techniques.

Nevertheless, its sister firm Ally Financial institution engaged in some poor cybersecurity measures in 2021. Since many Ally Financial institution customers additionally use Ally Make investments, this might be a trigger for concern. In a June 2021 letter to prospects, Ally Financial institution disclosed that it skilled an information breach that noticed the usernames and passwords of many customers uncovered to third-party firms that Ally does enterprise with. This wasn’t a cyberattack, however reasonably a programming error on Ally Financial institution’s behalf.

The scenario is at present beneath investigation and Ally Financial institution is the topic of a class-action lawsuit.

Ultimate Verdict

Ally Make investments is a good all-around brokerage account due to its $0 minimal and commission-free trades on shares, choices, and ETFs. I have been utilizing them for years and have by no means had any points. With no minimal, affiliation with an excellent financial institution in Ally Bank, it is a good place for any investor trying to start investing.

I first fell in love with them as a result of they provided cheap trades however now that so many brokerages are providing free trades, I’ve stayed for the convenience and ease of the platform.

Ally Make investments is finest for newbie to intermediate buyers who’re comfy managing a self-directed funding account. The low minimums and free trades make it very accessible to somebody who does not have so much to take a position however the instruments and options of the account nonetheless help somebody who wants extra.

In the event you simply need mutual funds, skip Ally Make investments – go together with the corporate providing the funds straight. If that is Vanguard, open a Vanguard account. If it is Constancy, open a Constancy account.

If you need a hands-off managed fund like a robo-advisor, Ally Make investments affords a reasonably good product however evaluate it with the leading robo-advisors at present obtainable.

It isn’t preferrred for superior buyers, day merchants, technical merchants, or somebody who wants loads of market information (Degree 2) to make selections. If that describes you, there are different brokerages that provides you with that degree of element into the market.

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