fidelity-review

Fidelity Review 2023

  • 9.6

Fidelity review summary

Fidelity is a US stockbroker. Fidelity provides commission-free US stocks and ETFs. In addition, it offers plenty of high-quality research tools, including trading ideas, detailed fundamental data and charting. The web trading platform is easy to use, and offers advanced order types. You can also trade with international, not just US stocks. It is a good choice for beginner investors. On the negative side, some mutual funds have high fees and the margin rates are also higher. The account’s verification is a bit slow and in some cases, the account opening is not fully digital. Lastly, the live chat speed could be improved. BrokerChooser gave Fidelity a 4.8/5 rating based on analyzing 500+ criteria and testing via opening a live account.

Fidelity is a regulated broker, it is overseen by a top-tier financial regulator in the USA . Fidelity is also covered by investor protection and it offers negative balance protection in selected jurisdictions. We at BrokerChooser always test brokers with real money, including the withdrawal process.

Fidelity pros and cons

ProsCons
Commission-free US stocks and ETFs High mutual fund fees and margin rates
Great trading platforms and research Slower account verification
US and international stocks Some products not available (e.g. futures)

Interactive Brokers main highlights​

🗺️ Country of regulationUSA
💰 Trading fees classLow
💰 Inactivity fee chargedNo
💰 Withdrawal fee amount$0
💰 Minimum deposit$0
🕖 Time to open an account1-3 days
💳 Deposit with bank cardNot available
👛 Depositing with electronic walletavailable
💱 Number of base currencies supported16
🎮 Demo account providedYes
🛍️ Products offeredStock, ETF, Fund, Bond, Options, Crypto, Robo-advisory

To read much more details about the broker’s services and features, expand on the sections below.

Our overall Interactive Brokers rating
  • 9.6

  • Fees
    7.4
  • Account opening
    8.4
  • Deposit and withdrawal
    7.6
  • Web Trading platform
    9
  • Mobile trading platform
    10
  • Desktop trading platform
    8.6
  • Markets and products
    8
  • Research
    9
  • Customer service
    7.8
  • Education
    10
Fidelity review

Fees

Fidelity has low trading and non-trading fees, including commission-free US stock trading. On the negative side, margin rates and fees for some mutual funds can be high.

ProsCons
Free stock and ETF trading High fees for non-free mutual funds
Low bond fees High margin rates
No inactivity fee 
Fidelity fees snapshot
AssetsFee levelFee terms
US stockLowFree stock and ETF trading
EURUSDNot available
Mutual fundhigh$49.95 or $75 for buying while selling is free; some 3,600 free mutual funds
Inactivity feeLowNo inactivity fee

How we ranked fees

We ranked Fidelity’s fee levels as low, average or high based on how they compare to those of all reviewed brokers.

First, let’s go over some basic terms related to broker fees. What you need to keep an eye on are trading fees and non-trading fees.

  • Trading fees occur when you trade. These can be commissions, spreads, financing rates and conversion fees.
  • Non-trading fees include charges not directly related to trading, like withdrawal fees or inactivity fees.

In the sections below, you will find the most relevant fees of Fidelity for each asset class. For example, in the case of stock investing the most important fees are commissions.

We also compared Fidelity’s fees with those of two similar brokers we selected, E*TRADE and TD Ameritrade. This selection is based on objective factors such as products offered, client profile, fee structure, etc. See a more detailed rundown of Fidelity alternatives.

To have a clear overview of Fidelity, let’s start with the trading fees.

Fidelity trading fees

Fidelity’s trading fees are low. We also liked the transparency of the fee structure.

Stock fees and ETF fees

Fidelity charges no stock and ETF commissions when you trade US stocks. On the other hand, international stock trade fees are relatively high. Still, it is not common for US brokers to offer non-US stocks at all.

There is also a small charge on sell orders, as they are subject to an activity assessment fee of $0.01-$0.03 per $1,000 of principal.

Fidelity stock and ETF commission of a $2,000 trade
 FidelityE*TRADETD Ameritrade
US stock$0.0$0.0$0.0
UK stock$10.2
German stock$18.8

Fidelity charges flat per-trade commissions on most international markets, as detailed in the table below.

Fidelity international stock and ETF commissions (per trade)
Market Commission
North America
US $0
Canada CAD 19
Mexico MXN 360
Europe
Austria, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain €19
Denmark DKK 160
Norway NOK 160
Poland PLN 90
Sweden SEK 180
Switzerland CHF 25
UK £9
Asia, the Pacific and Africa
Australia AUD 32
Hong Kong HKD 250
Japan JPY 3,000
New Zealand NZD 35
South Africa ZAR 225
Singapore SGD 35

If you prefer stock trading on margin, you should check Fidelity’s margin rates.

Trading on margin basically means that you borrow money from your broker and can purchase more shares than you could with just the available cash in your account. You have to pay interest on this borrowed money – the interest rate is called the margin rate. It can account for a significant portion of your trading costs.

Fidelity margin rates are high in an industry comparison. 

Fidelity annual margin rates
 FidelityE*TRADETD Ameritrade
USD margin rate12.1%10.2%13.3%

Margin rates are lower for higher debit balances.

Fidelity annual margin rate tiers
Debit BalanceRate %Base Rate +/-
$1,000,000+7.000%Base rate – 3.075%
$500,000 – $999,9997.250%Base rate – 2.825%
$250,000 – $499,9999.575%Base rate – 0.500%
$100,000 – $249,9999.825%Base rate – 0.250%
$50,000 – $99,9999.875%Base rate – 0.200%
$25,000 – $49,99910.825%Base rate + 0.750%
Under $25,00011.325%Base rate + 1.250%

*Effective since September 23, 2022

Fund fees

The fees for mutual funds are high for transaction-fee and non-Fidelity funds. Fidelity offers around 3,500+ free mutual funds. However, If you sell these funds within 60 days of purchase, a $49.95 fee is charged.

For all other funds, a purchase costs either $49.95 or $75, depending on the fund. We used $49.95 in our calculations because most popular mutual funds are charged this amount. You are only charged a fee for purchasing a fund, not when selling. That is why we halved Fidelity’s fee, to make it comparable with other brokers that charge both for buying and selling.

Fidelity commission for a $2,000 fund purchase
 FidelityE*TRADE
TD Ameritrade
Mutual fund$37.5$20.0$50.0

Bond fees

Fidelity has generally low bond fees. Bond fees vary by bond type. We calculated the fees for Treasury bonds traded on the secondary market.

Fidelity commission of a $10,000 government bond trade
 FidelityE*TRADETD Ameritrade
US Treasury bond$0$0$0

Options fees

Fidelity’s options fees are low, at $0.65 per contract.

Fidelity stock index options commission of 10 contracts
 FidelityE*TRADETD Ameritrade
US stock index options$6.5$6.5$6.5

Non-trading fees

Fidelity has low non-trading fees. There are no inactivity or account fees. 

There are also no withdrawal fees for ACH and USD wire withdrawals. Non-USD wire withdrawals however cost 3% of the amount you withdraw. In our review, we tested an electronic (ACH) withdrawal, which worked without any problem

Fidelity non-trading fees
 FidelityE*TRADETD Ameritrade
Account feeNoNoNo
Inactivity feeNoNoNo
Deposit fee$0$0$0
Withdrawal fee$0$0$0

In addition, there is a currency conversion fee if you trade an international stock that is denominated in a currency other than your account’s currency. The currency conversion fee depends on the amount you trade.

Fidelity currency conversion fee
Amount you tradeCost (% of the traded amount)
Less than $100k1.00%
$100k – <$250k0.75%
$250k – <$500kCBOT: MYM
NYMEX: MGC, SIL
0.50%
$500k – <$1 million0.35%
Above $1 million0-0.20%
Fidelity review

Account opening

Opening an account at Fidelity is easy and there is no minimum deposit. You can also choose from many account types. However, account verification is a bit slow.

ProsCons
No minimum deposit Slower account verification
User-friendly Not fully digital in some cases
 Many account types 

Fidelity is a US stockbroker that targets US clients. In this review, we tested Fidelity’s services provided within the US.

However, there are several countries where Fidelity is available through the Fidelity group’s other subsidiaries. Fidelity Investments Canada serves only Canadian customers, while Fidelity International has a strong presence in Western Europe and South-East Asia. The range of available products and services varies by country.

What is the minimum deposit at Fidelity?

There is no required minimum deposit at Fidelity for basic accounts. However, there is a minimum deposit for trade using a margin account or if you prefer investing in portfolios.

Fidelity minimum deposit by account type
Trading preferencesMinimum deposit
Trading at basic accounts$0
Margin account*$2,000
Day trading**$25,000
Fidelity Managed Accounts$10 – $500,000

* You trade with money borrowed from the broker, also called trading on leverage.
** You buy and sell assets on the same day.

Account types

Fidelity offers many different account types:

Fidelity account types
Account typeDescription
Investing and TradingAll investment retail accounts have joint and individual options, except for the Fidelity Account for Business.
– Brokerage Account – Tested accountStandard brokerage account.
– Cash Management AccountFDIC-insured account that is an alternative to checking.
– Brokerage and Cash ManagementAn overall account combining the features of a Brokerage and a Cash management account.
– Fidelity Account for BusinessesComprehensive trading and cash management account for business needs.
Saving for retirementGrowth plans for retirement with tax contributions.
– Rollover IRAAn account to consolidate an old 401(k) IRA into a Fidelity account and to maintain tax advantages.
– Traditional IRAAn account to help you with tax-deductible contributions and earnings to withdraw in retirement.
– Roth IRA, Roth IRA for KidsTax-free withdrawals if conditions are met. Accounts available for minors with an adult managing it.
– Inherited IRA, Inherited Roth IRAThese accounts are for you if you have inherited a Traditional IRA, SIMPLE IRA, SEP IRA or Roth IRA account and would like to continue them.
– Self-Employed IRA, Self-Employed 401(k)Helps you to set up workplace savings either for self-employed individuals or business owners.
– Simple IRAOffers tax contributions for small business (fewer than 100 employees).
– Investment-Only plans for Small BusinessesA brokerage account for small businesses with qualified plans which they would like to expand with Fidelity investment offerings.
– 401(k) Plan for Small BusinessesRetirement plans to offer for your employees.
Managed accountsAccounts managed by Fidelity’s technology and professionals. Robo-advisor accounts managed by Fidelity.
Saving for education / medical expenses / ABLE (Achieve a Better Life Experience)Savings accounts for various goals.
– 529 accountAn account eligible for state tax reductions.
– Custodial accountThis is a brokerage account that lets you invest on behalf of a minor.
– Health Savings accountA plan that helps you save money on medical expenses that weren’t spent.
– The Attainable Savings PlanAn account that helps disabled individuals and their families to invest and save for disability-related expenses.
Charitable giving 
– Fidelity CharitableAn account that lets you get a tax deduction while supporting any charity.
Estate planning 
– Trust, Estate accountsAccounts that let you invest and manage a brokerage account on behalf of an established trust or estate.
Annuities 
– Fidelity Personal Retirement AnnuityAn account to save for retirement on a tax-deferred basis.
– Deferred Fixed AnnuitiesAn account that offers a rate of return for a set period of time.
– Immediate Fixed Income AnnuitiesProvides a stream of income for the rest of a client’s life or a set period of time.
– Deferred Income AnnuitiesProvides you and your spouse with guaranteed income beginning on a future date.
Life insurance 
– Universal Life, Term Life InsurancePermanent life insurance coverage.

In this review, we tested the Brokerage Individual Account.

If you want to trade with international stocks, you need to register for a supplemental service for your brokerage account called International Stock Trading. The registration is quick and straightforward, and can be initiated within your brokerage account.

How to open your account

The account opening is user-friendly and fully digital in most cases. There can be cases when you have to mail or fax the account opening form and the photocopy of the relevant ID card to Fidelity. It took 3 business days for us to open the account, which is a bit slow compared to other brokers.

Steps at Fidelity to open an account:

  1. Select the account type.
  2. Add personal information, like Social Security Number, residency, employment status, etc.
  3. Select your investment/trading preferences.
  4. Review your information.
  5. Acknowledge the terms and conditions.
  6. Print and mail/fax the application.

The online part of the application takes roughly 20 minutes, but with the mail-in process, it took about 3 business days to open and verify the account.

Signing up for International Stock Trading was relatively quick and easy; it took 5 minutes after the brokerage account was verified.

Fidelity review – Account opening

Our best alternatives to Fidelity are:

The highest ranking competitors are:

  1. E*TRADE full review
  2. TD Ameritrade full review
  3. Charles Schwab full review
  4. Vanguard full review
Fidelity review

Deposit and withdrawal

Fidelity offers an exceptionally wide range of base currencies. On the negative side, credit/debit cards are not accepted.

ProsCons
Free withdrawal Credit/Debit card not available
No deposit fee 
Several account base currencies 

Account base currencies

At Fidelity, you can choose from 16 base currencies

Fidelity available base currencies
USDEURGBPAUD
CADDKKHKDJPY
MXNNZDNOKPLN
ZARSGDSEKCHF

This selection is great compared to competing brokers.

Base currencies at Fidelity vs similar brokers
 FidelityE*TRADETD Ameritrade
Number of base currencies1611

Why does this matter? For two reasons. If you fund your trading account in the same currency as your bank account or you trade assets in the same currency as your trading account base currency, you don’t have to pay a conversion fee.

A convenient way to save on currency conversion fees is by opening a multi-currency bank account at a digital bank. These usually offer bank accounts in several currencies with great currency exchange rates, as well as free or cheap international bank transfers. Opening an account only takes a few minutes on your phone.

Deposit fees and options

Fidelity charges no deposit fees.

Clients can use a check, electronic (ACH), wire transfer and PayPal or Venmo for depositing funds. Credit/debit cards are not available for deposits.

Fidelity offers a feature called ‘BillPay’ as an additional service. With a subscription, you can make payments and manage your bills using your brokerage account.

Fidelity deposit options
 FidelityE*TRADETD Ameritrade
Bank transferYesYesYes
Credit/debit cardNoNoNo
Electronic walletsYesNoNo

A bank transfer can take several business days, while payment with a credit/debit card is instant.

We tested the ACH transfer and it took 2 business days for the funds to arrive.

You can only deposit money from accounts that are in your name.

Fidelity review – Deposit and withdrawal – Deposit

Fidelity withdrawal fees and options

Fidelity charges no withdrawal fees if you use ACH or USD wire withdrawal. Non-USD withdrawals cost 3%.

Fidelity charges no withdrawal fees if you use ACH or USD wire withdrawal. Non-USD withdrawals cost 3%.

Fidelity withdrawal fees and options
 FidelityE*TRADETD Ameritrade
Bank transferYesYesYes
Credit/debit cardNoNoNo
Electronic walletsYesNoNo
Withdrawal fee$0$0$0

How long does it take to withdraw money from Fidelity? We tested the ACH bank transfer withdrawal and it was completed within 2 business days.

You can only withdraw money to accounts in your name.

How do you withdraw money from Fidelity? Follow these steps:

  • Log in to the account.
  • Go to ‘Accounts & Trade’, ‘Portfolio’, then select ‘Transfer’.
  • Select the withdrawal method you want to use.
  • Select your Fidelity account as ‘Transfer from’.
  • Select the account you want to withdraw the money to as ‘Transfer to’.
  • Enter the amount you wish to withdraw and set the date.
  • Initiate the withdrawal.

You can also set automatic withdrawals.

Fidelity review

Web trading platform

Fidelity’s web platform is easy to use, has many order types and provides two-step authentication. On the negative side, it is not customizable.

ProsCons
 User-friendly Limited customizability (for charts, workspace)
Clear fee report 
Two-step (safer) login 
Fidelity platforms to choose from
Trading platformScoreAvailable
Web
4.5
stars
Yes
Mobile
5.0
stars
Yes
Desktop
4.3
stars
Yes

Fidelity has its own, in-house developed web trading platform. It is available only in English.

Look and feel

The Fidelity web trading platform is user-friendly and provides a good user experience. However, it lacks customizability.

Fidelity review – Web trading platform

Login and security

Fidelity offers a two-step authentication login besides the default one-step login. Fidelity offers you free use of Symantec’s Validation and ID Protection (VIP) Access app, which generates a randomized 6-digit code. Alternatively, you can also receive a text message with a login code, but it’s less secure.

During the account setup, you have to provide 3 security questions and answers. When you first log in on a new device, you have to answer one of these security questions. After these steps are done, you can access your account using your regular ID and password.

Search functions

The search functions are OK. You can search by typing both a company’s name or its ticker. Searching for company names gives relevant results.

If you enable International Stock Trading, then you should search using the ticker and a country code, as without the latter the search will only include the US market. This feature could be improved to simplify searching. The search field can be found in the upper right corner.

Fidelity review – Web trading platform – Search

Placing orders

Fidelity’s web trading platform has a lot of order types, including more sophisticated ones:

  • Market
  • Limit
  • Stop
  • Stop Limit
  • Trailing stop ($, %)
  • Trailing stop limit ($, %)
  • Multi-contingent
  • One Cancels the Other (OCO)
  • One Triggers the Other (OTO)
  • One Triggers a One Cancels the Other (OTOCO).

To get a better understanding of these terms, read this overview of order types.

There are also order time limits you can use: Good ‘Til Canceled (GTC), Day, Fill or Kill, Immediate or Cancel, On the Open, End of Day.

Fidelity review – Web trading platform – Order panel

Alerts and notifications

You can set a wide range of alerts and notifications. From price to research alerts, you will find a lot of alert types in three main categories: Account Services, Research and Market Monitoring, and Products and Offerings.

You can get notifications via email or text message. If you download the mobile trading app, you can also set push notifications. 

The alerts can be found in your ‘Home’ menu. Go to ‘News & Research’ on the top of the page, and choose ‘Alerts’. You can also just simply search for a stock and click ‘Set alert’. We liked the interlinkability of the alerts: as you set an alert on one of the platforms, you can make it active on the other platforms as well with one click.

Portfolio and fee reports

Fidelity has clear portfolio and fee reports. These can be found in the ‘Accounts & Trade’ section, under ‘Account Positions’.

You can download the reports, but only in CSV format.

Fidelity review

Mobile trading platform

Fidelity has a great mobile trading platform. It is user-friendly and well-designed.

ProsCons
User-friendly No two-step (safer) login
Good search function 
Good variety of order types 

Fidelity’s mobile trading platform is available both for iOS and Android. In this review, we tested the iOS version. The platform is available in English.

Look and feel

The Fidelity mobile trading platform is user-friendly. It is more up-to-date than the web trading platform.

Fidelity review – Mobile trading platform

Login and security

Fidelity offers you free use of Symantec’s Validation and ID Protection (VIP) Access app, which generates a randomized 6-digit code or alternatively you can use text messages to log in.

Fidelity offers biometric authentication as well, which is a convenient feature. 

Search functions

The search functions are good. It’s easy to use and you can find the relevant options for the stocks easily.

You can search for international stocks using the country code. Without that, the search only covers the US market.

We liked the rich research functions; for example, you can see third-party evaluations in many equity categories.

Fidelity review – Mobile trading platform – Search

Placing orders

You can use the following order types: Market, Limit, Stop, Stop Limit, Trailing stop ($, %), Trailing stop limit ($, %).

There are also order time limits you can use: Good ‘Til Canceled (GTC), Day, Fill or Kill, Immediate or Cancel, On the Open.

Fidelity review – Mobile trading platform – Order panel

Alerts and notifications

You can easily set alerts and notifications on the Fidelity mobile app. You can allow push notifications as well.

Fidelity review

Desktop trading platform

Fidelity’s desktop platform is highly customizable, offers many order types and has a clear fee report.

ProsCons
 Clear fee report Not as quick to load as competing platforms
Good customizability (for charts, workspace) 
Good variety of order types 

Fidelity offers an in-house developed desktop trading platform called Active Trader ProThis platform is mainly for active traders and experienced investors. It acts as an extension of the web platform and integrates a lot of research functions with great flexibility. 

Similarly to the web and mobile trading platforms, the desktop trading platform is available only in English.

Look and feel

Fidelity’s desktop trading platform is highly customizable.

On the negative side, the platform loads slowly in cases when a new window is opened or when it is cross-linked to the web-based platform.

Interactive Brokers review – Desktop trading platform

Login and security

The system has the same security features as the web trading platform. You can log in using a two-step authentication, which makes the platform unquestionably safer to use.

Search functions

The search function is great. You can check/uncheck boxes to include/exclude searching for derivatives (like CFDs).

Fidelity review – Desktop trading platform

Login and security

You can set up Symantec’s Validation and ID Protection (VIP) Access app with the desktop platform as well.

Search functions

Fidelity Active Trader Pro has a great search function. You can search for an asset by typing its name or ticker, and will get relevant results.

Fidelity review – Desktop trading platform – Search

Placing orders

You can use the same order types as on the web trading platform.

Fidelity review – Desktop trading platform – Order panel

Alerts and notifications

You can set alerts and notifications on the desktop trading platform. The alerts are synced with the web platform. Furthermore, you can use ‘Real-time Analytics,’ which analyzes the historical data of your watchlist and indicates if potential trading opportunities occur.

Portfolio and fee reports

Fidelity has clear portfolio and fee reports. You can easily customize the tab and add data on commission, profit/loss balance, currency, etc. The reports can be found in the ‘Account\History’ menu.

Fidelity review

Markets and products

Fidelity offers a lot of different trading products, from stocks to options, including international stocks. However, forex and futures trading is not available.

Fidelity stands out in terms of its international stock market offer, as most US brokers don’t provide access to international stock exchanges. Fidelity’s bond and mutual fund offering is also great, while its ETF and options selections are average.

Fidelity asset classes
 FidelityE*TRADETD Ameritrade
StocksYesYesYes
ETFsYesYesYes
ForexNoNoNo
FundsYesYesYes
BondsYesYesYes
OptionsYesYesYes
FuturesNoYesYes
CryptoYesYesYes

Stocks and ETFs

Fidelity covers the US markets and many international stock exchanges. 

Fidelity stock and ETF selection
 FidelityE*TRADETD Ameritrade
Stock markets (#)2554
ETFs (#)2,3002,3002,300

You can trade stocks on the following US stock exchanges: NYSE, NASDAQ, AMEX, OTC. Fidelity has a very wide range of foreign markets as well. Trades can be settled in local currency or in USD.

Fidelity international stock markets
 Europe North AmericaAsia, Pacific, Africa
AustriaGreecePortugalUSAustralia
BelgiumIrelandSpainCanadaHong Kong
DenmarkItalySwedenMexicoJapan
FinlandNetherlandsSwitzerland New Zealand
FranceNorwayUK Singapore
GermanyPoland  South Africa

Funds

Fidelity has a good selection of mutual funds. You will find Fidelity funds, as well as funds from other large providers like BlackRock and Vanguard. 

Fidelity mutual fund selection
 FidelityE*TRADETD Ameritrade
Fund providers (#)550600740

Bonds

Fidelity offers an extensive range of bonds. The bond selection includes both government and corporate bonds.

Fidelity bond selection
 FidelityE*TRADETD Ameritrade
Bonds (#)106,00088,00040,000

Options

Fidelity’s options selection is average.

Fidelity options selection
 FidelityE*TRADETD Ameritrade
Options markets (#)858

You will find options from major US options exchanges, like CBOE.

Fidelity Managed Accounts

Fidelity also offers a range of managed account services, which are great if you need help managing your investments.

Fidelity Managed Accounts
  Service type Minimum to start Annual fee
Fidelity Go Robo-advisory service $10 0-0.35%
Fidelity Personalized Planning and Advice Robo-advisory service with expert consultation, either with a team or a dedicated advisor $25,000 0.50%
Portfolio Advisory Services Personalized solutions compiled by Fidelity experts $50,000 to work with a team of advisors

$250,000 for a dedicated advisor
1.10% with a team of advisors

0.50-1.50% with a dedicated advisor
Separately Managed Accounts Preset portfolios you can invest in, e.g. Fidelity U.S. Large Cap Equity Strategy $100,000-$350,000 0.20-0.90%
Fidelity review

Research

Fidelity has great research tools with a large variety of services, including trading ideas, detailed fundamental data and great screeners. However, the quality of the news flow could be better.

ProsCons
Good interactive chart News flow quality could be better
Trading ideas 
Data on asset fundamentals 

Fidelity offers many useful tools that are great for fundamental analysis and strategy building. We tested the research tools on the web trading platform. 

Trading ideas

Fidelity provides trading ideas for stocks, ETFs and mutual funds.

ESG scores are provided as well as buy/sell ratings by a handful of research firms.

Research on ETFs and mutual funds is also supported by third-party providers like MorningStar.

Fidelity review – Research – Recommendations

Fundamental data

Fidelity provides extensive information on fundamental data. You will find a lot of data for all types of assets, from stocks to funds.

For example, for companies you can easily access the financial statement for the last 5 years, peer group companies, a dividend calendar, etc.

Fidelity review – Research – Fundamental data

Charting

Fidelity has good charting tools. We tested the web trading platform’s charting toolkit. It is easy to edit the charts, and there are 50 technical indicators that you can set. You can also save and download the charts. 

Fidelity review – Research – Charting

News feed

The news feed is provided by third parties like The Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg. It is easy to read and follow, but lacks visual elements such as charts or pictures.

Other research tools you may enjoy

There are great and sophisticated screeners for stocks, ETFs and mutual funds. This is one of the best screener tools we have tested.

If you find that technical analysis can help your trading, you might find it useful that Fidelity gives access to Recognia and Trading Central’s tools, both of which offer chart pattern recognition.

Fidelity review

Customer service

Fidelity’s customer service is good. They provide fast and relevant answers, but their live chat could see some improvements.

ProsCons
 Phone support No 24/7 support
Live chat Slow live chat
Fast response time 

You can contact Fidelity via:

  • live chat
  • phone
  • email

The customer support is available in English.

When we tested it, Fidelity’s live chat was really slow. There were usually about a dozen clients in the queue before us, and it took up to 20 minutes to get in contact with an operator. The relevancy of the answers was mostly OK.

Fidelity claims the average wait time is only 5 minutes.

Phone support is great. The customer support team was very helpful and gave relevant answers. The response time was OK, as an agent was connected within a few minutes.

Email support works well, too. We received relevant answers within 1 business day.

On the negative side, not all support services are available 24/7. For example, live chat is only available between 8 a.m. – 10 p.m. (9 a.m. – 4 p.m. on weekends).

Fidelity review – Customer Service

Fidelity review

Education

Fidelity offers a wide range of high-quality educational materials, like articles, webinars and videos. However, a paper trading (demo) account is available only on the desktop platform.

ProsCons
Trading platform tutorial Demo account only for desktop
Educational videos 
Good production quality 

At Fidelity you can learn about trading in the following ways:

  • Platform tutorial videos
  • General educational videos
  • Webinars
  • Quality educational articles
  • Demo account, but only for desktop trading platform, called Active Trader Pro

 

The topics of the webinars range from beginner to advanced. There are approximately 5-10 new videos per month and you can also watch older materials.

We liked Fidelity’s FAQ, called the ‘Learning Center’: it collects a lot of relevant information in a well-structured and easily searchable manner.

Fidelity review – Education

Fidelity review

Safety

Fidelity is regulated by top-tier financial authorities and has a high level of investor protection. However, there is no negative balance protection and its financial information is not public.

ProsCons
Majority of clients belong to a top-tier financial authority No negative balance protection
High level of investor protection Does not hold a banking license
Additional coverage by Fidelity Not listed on stock exchange

Is Fidelity regulated?

Yes, it is regulated by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA).

Is Fidelity safe?

To be certain if a brokerage is safe, we highly advise that you check two facts:

  • how you are protected if something goes wrong
  • what the background of the broker is

How you are protected

In this review, we concentrate on Fidelity services in the US. In the US, customers are served by Fidelity Brokerage Services LLC and as such are under the US investor protection scheme, called SIPC. This protects against the loss of cash and securities in case the broker goes bust. The limit of SIPC protection is $500,000, which includes $250,000 for cash. This amount is substantially higher than what most investor protection schemes provide.

Not all investments are protected by SIPC. In general, SIPC covers notes, stocks, bonds, mutual funds and other investment company shares, and other registered securities. It does not cover instruments such as unregistered investment contracts, unregistered limited partnerships, fixed annuity contracts, currency, and interests in gold, silver, or other commodity futures contracts or commodity options.

Fidelity also provides an additional total of $1 billion coverage on an aggregate company level. There is no per customer limit on securities coverage, but there is a $1.9 million coverage limit on cash per account. 

A further safeguard is Fidelity’s Customer Protection Guarantee, whereby the firm will reimburse you for losses from unauthorized activity in covered accounts occurring through no fault of your own. You are automatically covered for all cash and securities held in your covered Fidelity account(s).

However, Fidelity does not provide negative balance protection. You won’t be protected against the balance on your account going into negative territory.

Background

Fidelity was established in 1946. The longer track record a broker has, the more proof we have that it has successfully survived previous financial crises.

As it is a privately-held company, you may have some trouble if you are looking for more information about Fidelity. There is quite limited financial information available compared to other brokers. The company is owned by the Fidelity group’s parent company, called FMR LLC.

Being regulated by top-tier authorities, having a long track record and providing additional insurance are all great signs for Fidelity’s safety.

Fidelity review

Bottom line

Fidelity is one of the biggest US stockbrokers and is regulated by top-tier authorities.

Fidelity offers commission-free US stocks and ETFs. The trading platforms and research are outstanding, with many tools including trading ideas and detailed fundamental data. The offered range of products includes international stock exchanges in addition to the US market, which is not common among US brokers.

Fidelity has some drawbacks, though. Some mutual funds have high fees, and the margin rates are high as well. You can’t trade forex or futures.

As it has great research tools, a user-friendly web trading platform, and charges no inactivity fee, feel free to try Fidelity’s services.

Fidelity review

FAQ

We recommend Fidelity for investors and traders looking for solid research and great trading platforms.

Below you can find links to all aspects of Fidelity in this comprehensive collection.

Lower fees, lower costs?

We detailed this in our Fidelity fees article.

What about the minimum deposit?

Our ultimate guide to the Fidelity minimum deposit is updated regularly.

How to start your Fidelity account?

Look no further than our evaluation of the Fidelity account opening.

How’s their trading app?

Here’s our expert view after checking the Fidelity trading app.

Is the quality of customer service satisfactory?

All you need to know about the Fidelity customer service.

Legit or scam?

Is Fidelity legit features all the key aspects you need to look at to see if a broker is safe and legit.

Free or premium? Or both?

A glance at actual costs and whether Fidelity is really free.

Is this broker good for beginners?

We checked it in Is Fidelity good for beginners.

Should you buy your silver bullets on Fidelity?

Research for silver bugs in the Silver buy on Fidelity guide

I want to trade options, are they available at Fidelity?

We explored the topic in Can you trade options on Fidelity?

What is the minimum account balance at Fidelity?

Check out the current account balance requirements at Fidelity in our What is the minimum account balance at Fidelity article.

Looking for commission and fees data for Fidelity?

We collected them in Fidelity commission and fees.

How do you withdraw money from Fidelity?

We tested it and collected the options and costs in How to withdraw money on Fidelity.

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Education