In addition to remaining our top overall choice for best online broker and our favorite low-cost broker, Fidelity also unseated Charles Schwab in the category of Best Broker for ETFs this year. Fidelity has excellent market platforms available for customers to use on their computers and mobile devices. In addition, the company leverages its strong market position to improve an already stellar product offering while maintaining very low fees and administrative costs. Fidelity does not charge a fee or commission on stock or ETF trades. Fidelity also offers its customers access to mutual funds, options, currencies, OTCBB (penny stocks), and fixed income products, including treasury, corporate, agency, municipal bonds, and CDs.
Fidelity also supports its users with excellent resources and tools for investors and traders, such as very strong educational materials, portfolio analysis tools, reports, calculators, and excellent screeners for identifying individual securities in an asset class. However, some traders may want to look elsewhere because Fidelity does not offer futures, options on futures, commodities, or cryptocurrencies.
- Low costs
- Great trade executions
- Excellent research and asset screeners
- Extensive educational content
- Top-notch portfolio analysis tools and calculators
- No access to futures, commodities, or crypto trading
- Accounts are restricted to the U.S. and main island residents
- High broker-assisted trading fees
- Options fees higher than competitors
Fidelity is the largest U.S. brokerage firm and continues to be our first choice for both the best online broker and low-cost broker. Founded in 1943 in Boston, Fidelity has 40 million individual investors, $11.3 trillion in assets under administration, $4.3 trillion in discretionary assets, and accounts for 3.1 million trades daily. “Take intelligent risks rather than follow the crowd,” has been the firm’s guiding principle since its founding. It continues to impact Fidelity, as seen by current Chairman and CEO, Abby Johnson’s comment that “the reason why we exist hasn’t changed since our founding…to strengthen and secure our clients’ financial well-being.” 1 The company continues to invest in its systems and innovate within its online trading platforms, such as adding an enhanced investor dashboard that remembers where you were when you closed the program, so you start at that page on the next login. It also has added thematic baskets and customizable indexes that can be rebalanced for individuals.