Fidelity Review

Richard Montana | August 2, 2022

Fidelity is a USA brokerage firm that offers a broad choice of investments along with free access to advanced platforms and all of the resources required to help you find the right opportunities so that you can make informed decisions. With no account fees, $0 commission trades, and no minimums to open an account, Fidelity can help your money go further. I think that this broker could be a top choice for everyday investors, including beginners, thanks to an excellent combination of educational content and a modern mobile app that makes trading and investing online easily accessible to everyone. You get robust tools and the latest professional insights from an inhouse team of specialists. They provide everything from digital investing and advice to wealth management services.

Pros & Cons
  • Broad choice of investments to choose from
  • US and international stocks
  • Powerful yet user-friendly platforms
  • Expert insights and investing tools
  • Commission-free US stocks and ETFs
  • Very competitive fees for everyone
  • Multiple account base currencies
  • Excellent 24/7 customer service
  • Do not currently support CFDs and Cryptos
  • Limited account funding options
  • Long account opening process
  • Certain account benefits require larger deposits
  • High mutual fund fees and margin rates

Summary

Fidelity is a US brokerage offering investors zero commission online trading on Stocks, Exchange-traded Funds (ETFs) and Options. They implement the latest smart trading technologies and also have competitive fees on Mutual Funds, Bonds, IPOs, Metals and Certificates of Deposit (CDs). Founded in 1946, Fidelity are widely regarded for consistently providing investors with low rates and good customer service. They also offer independent professional research along with a range of powerful trading platforms, tools and educational resources. There is plenty of opportunity for everyone, regardless of your interests and experience level.

With a Fidelity brokerage account, you are free to conduct self-directed investments or request them to manage your finances for you via the investment advisory offerings. There is a wide range of different account types to cater to different financial goals. I like how they have straightforward and transparent offerings that can be catered to each client’s individual needs. Whether you need a trading account, or a Rollover, Traditional, or Roth IRA—it only takes a few minutes to open an account.

From complex wealth management to your retirement needs, they can help you with financial planning. You can access professional investment management with low-cost robo advisor solutions, from digital-only investing to a hybrid robo service with access to advisors when needed. Collaborate with a dedicated advisor who will work with you and for you, providing clear recommendations designed to help you grow and protect your wealth.

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Regulation

When it some to choosing a brokerage, one of the first things that I look for is regulation. This is because I would always prefer to use a regulated broker as they must follow strict rules and procedures that have been put in place to help protect investors. I am pleased to see that Fidelity is regulated under U.S. securities law, is registered with the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) and is a member of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). They are also listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). I personally consider this to be top-tier regulation and would therefore have no problem in trusting them with my funds.

Funds

Fidelity clients are covered by the Customer Protection Guarantee, where they will reimburse eligible clients for losses that occur from unauthorised activity within their accounts. In addition to this, they are also participating in asset protection programs such as the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC) to help provide the best services possible to clients. Fidelity take clients security and privacy very seriously. They implement industry leading security standards and top-class technologies to help ensure that you portfolio is kept safe.

Countries

Whilst Fidelity is a US broker that is primarily catering for US clients, they do welcome investors from other countries through their subsidiary companies. Fidelity Investments Canada caters to Canadian investors, whilst Fidelity International offer its products and services throughout Europe and South-East Asia. The services can differentiate between countries, including the products available to trade and account types. If you discover that they do not serve clients in your region for whatever reason, please feel free to browse our broker reviews for some alternative options.

Platforms

Clients of Fidelity gain access to a selection of cutting-edge desktop and web trading platforms. You can stay in tune with all of your accounts, research, and trade from anywhere in the world provided that you have an internet connection. I found the platforms to be very easy to use, with everything conveniently accessible from the fully customisable interface. I had no problems navigating my way around and think it is an ideal setup for trading online with minimal fuss.

Active Trader Pro

Active Trader Pro is Fidelity’s advanced trading platform, with implemented tools that can help with making informed decisions before, during, and after the trade. You can get real-time insights, visual snapshots to monitor your investments, and powerful trading tools. Tools include the all-in-one Daily Dashboard, a thematic stock screener, customised newsfeeds, find smart entry and exit points, and more. You can download Active Trader Pro in just a few simple steps and start with a predefined layout. Upon initial login, use the setup feature to choose a layout, learn quick tips, and access educational videos. From then on, you can build a custom layout with your preferred tools, colors, and font size to make it your own.

Active Trader Pro

Active Trader Pro

Spot trading opportunities in real-time with clear, actionable alerts from Real-Time Analytics. Be in the know when a stock hits a new high or low, crosses over a key technical level, experiences an unusual spike in intraday volume compared to its historical average volume, and more. Define entry and exit strategies, visualize a trade’s potential risk and reward on a chart, and set an alert to stay on top of price movements, all with Trade Armor. This allows you to get insights to help know when to buy and sell according to your own strategy. Find information you can act on using the all-in-one Daily Dashboard with real-time news, earnings announcements, and economic events all relevant to your positions.

Fidelity Active Trader Pro Features:

  • Real-time, streaming market updates directly within the platform
  • Fully customisable interface can be setup as simple or complex as you need
  • Place and manage trades with advanced order types and minimal hassle
  • View real-time insights to help assist with detailed market analysis
  • Visual snapshots for monitoring your investments in real-time
  • In-built powerful trading tools to conduct in depth chart analysis
  • Market insights from the experts to help with trade decisions
  • Free research from more than 20+ independent providers
  • Find potential trading setups with real-time alerts
  • Portfolio management tools to streamline the process
  • Monitor economical events that can have an impact on your portfolio

Fidelity Mobile Apps

The mobile platform is useful for those who need to access and manage their account whilst on the go. You can view your portfolio, watch lists, conduct research and trade multiple assets all from the palm of your hands. You also get news, videos, real-time quotes, and advanced charting, helping you to always remain in touch with the markets from anywhere in the world where you have an internet connection. The mobile platform is available for download on both Android and iOS compatible devices. I like how it gives a more modern, streamlined experience with a home screen that has your accounts, investments, planning, and spending all in one place.

Fidelity App

Fidelity App

Getting started is easy with no account fees or minimums to open a retail brokerage account, commission-free trades for US stocks and ETFs, and fractional shares for as little as $1. Deposit checks, pay bills, track spending, and more, all backed by 75 years of Fidelity’s financial expertise. When you log in to the Fidelity app, whether you are at home, at work, or on the road, and regardless of data or Wi-Fi connection, it can establish a secure connection with advanced encryption, to help prevent your information from being compromised.

Fidelity Mobile App Features:

  • Real time market quotes delivered conveniently to your mobile device
  • Personalised feed to provide you with the information that matters most
  • View and manage your portfolio quickly and easily whilst on the go
  • Trade anytime, anywhere on stocks, options, ETFs, and mutual funds
  • Expert market research always available at your fingertups
  • Stream podcasts and webinar
  • Create watch lists to easily keep track of your favourite instruments
  • Get customised news and push alert notifications

Tools

I actually feel like the provided platforms should have plenty of tools for most if you to get by with. When you open a Fidelity account you have access to a suite of easy-to-use yet sophisticated online trading tools to assist you with your analysis and to help you plan, evaluate and track your finances so that you can make better decisions and reach your full trading potential. Whether you’re working independently, or with a financial professional, they offer smart tools and technologies to help you discover and take advantage of new trading opportunities.

Stock Research Dashboard

Using the stock research dashboard, you are able to search and find potential investment opportunities via third-party expert research and data visualisation tools. This includes a combination of fundamental and technical analysis, social trends, advanced charting with price action, technical events from Recognia, Social Sentiment Score and more.

Stock Screener

The stock screener can be used on desktop or mobile and makes it quick and easy to find investments that match your chosen criteria. You can search stocks and ETFs using hundreds of different criteria to narrow down your options. You may also search using independent expert strategies.

Equity Summary Score

Unique to Fidelity is the investment validation tool equity summary score by Thomson Reuters Starmine. This gives you stock ratings from selected independent analysts which is then consolidated into a single score.

Strategy Testing Tools

Fidelity offer back testing strategies on Fidelity.com and Wealth-Lab Pro utilising historical market data over 20 years to see how different strategies would have performed historically before you invest. Of course, historical performance is by no means any guarantee of future performance. Use of Wealth-Lab Pro’s automated trading feature is for investors trading a minimum of 36 times a year and subject to additional terms, conditions, and eligibility requirements.

Fidelity Calculators

From strategy to analysis, the calculators can help you plan, evaluate, and track your finances so you’re always in the know.

Fidelity Go

Fidelity Go is a robo-advisor that can digitally manage your investments for you according to your specifications, risk tolerance and overall goals.

Fidelity Personalised Planning & Advice

This is a hybrid robo-advisor that combines digital planning and investment management alongside a professional advisor when required.

Education

You can also get the latest expert insights from an in-house team of specialists. They offer investment research and analysis to assist clients with their different trading strategies. Fidelity Viewpoints provides articles and some of the latest financial commentary to help traders make informed investing decisions.

Fidelity Wealth Services

This service offers wealth management with personalised planning and advice from a professional advisor.

Fidelity Learning Centre

The Fidelity learning centre contains a vast array of useful information and online courses covering a variety of different topics suitable for all experience levels. Topics covered include trading, investing, products and more. There is plenty of information for everyone to learn something.

Live Webinars

The brokerage runs frequent free webinars where you can get helpful insights from the comfort of your own home. Users can subscribe to get update notifications for upcoming webinars.

Interactive Coaching Sessions

Clients can join the Trading Strategy Desk to help improve their knowledge on a variety of different trading and investment topics such as technical analysis, trading platforms, risk management, strategies and more.

Fidelity Viewpoints

With Fidelity Viewpoints you can get a weekly email of the experts current thinking about financial markets, investing strategies, and personal finance. This can be a great way to get inspired on potential opportunities and to keep up to date with what is happening around the markets.

Markets

With Fidelity, you can trade and invest with competitive fees in a fantastic selection of stocks, Mutual Funds, Options, Bonds, CDs, ETFs and more. You should carefully read their fee schedule before opening an account as there may be limitations whilst other fees may apply. Of course, fees are constantly changing so whilst these are up to date as of now, you should check to see if they have changed.

Stocks & Options

US and global stocks, REITs, IPOs and more. $0 per stock or options trade plus $0.65 per contract on options and margin rates as low as 5.00%.

ETFs

Includes 11 Fidelity sector ETFs, 5 Fidelity bond ETFs, and 13 Fidelity factor ETFs. $0 per trade for all ETFs.

Bonds & Certificates of Deposit (CDs)

40,000 new-issue and secondary market bonds and CDs, and 60,000 total offerings. $1 per bond or CD in secondary trading and free for US Treasuries traded online.

Mutual Funds

10,000+ Fidelity and non-Fidelity mutual funds covering companies worldwide. Zero expense ratio index mutual funds with no minimal investment. $0 for Fidelity funds and hundreds of other funds with no other transaction fees.

Accounts

Fidelity offer a vast choice of self-directed and managed accounts, suitable for different investor goals and strategies. Compared to some other online brokers, Fidelity accounts have no fees and can be opened with no minimum deposit requirements.

There are different service levels offered depending on the amount traded by each client. An active trader is classified by having 120+ trades per year and has access to exclusive tools and services. Those who conduct more than 500+ trades per year are classified as active trader VIPs and are thus granted with the highest level of service for high net worth individuals.

Some of the main Fidelity account types offered are:

  • Individual Account (one person)
  • Joint Account (two or more persons)
  • Business Account (for legal entities)
  • Retirement Accounts (Roth IRA, Traditional IRA, Rollover IRA)
  • Automated & Managed Account
  • Trust, Estate & Charitable Planning Accounts
  • Banking Accounts
  • Education Savings & Custodial Accounts

Support

The Fidelity customer service team is available 24/7 via online chat, telephone and email. This provides convenient options for getting in touch with an investment professional who can help you with all your technical, general or account questions. They also have Investor Centres located throughout the USA where they welcome visitors. No matter what financial questions you have, Fidelity are there to help work with you on your terms. They are available however and whenever you need them, something that is not always the case when dealing with some other brokers. I actually put customer support up there with regulation in terms of importance. You can have the best trading conditions in the world, but it won’t matter much to me if your support isn’t on par.

Funding

Fidelity funding options include wire transfers, ACH, check and online digital payment processors. Please note that some methods may only be available to specific countries and not all are available for both deposit and withdrawal. Some fees may be charged when using certain payment methods. The withdrawal time can vary depending on the payment provider and method. Bank transfers may take a few business days to clear whilst some methods can be instant.

Some payment systems may have transaction limits, restrictions, and requirements which are indicated on their respective websites. You may need to verify your account to remove limits on particular methods in some countries. Fidelity strictly do not accept third-party payments. All funds deposited into your trading account must be under the same name as your Fidelity trading account.

Accounts can be opened in an excellent choice of currencies including USD, EUR, GBP, CAD, AUD, DEN, HKD, JPY, MXN, NZD, NOK, PLN, ZAR, SGD, SEK, CHF. The different currency options are beneficial as currency conversion fees do not apply when using an account in your own currency.

Conclusion

Fidelity is a popular US based online brokerage with a broad choice of investments, advanced trading platforms and innovative tools. Their fees are very competitive and there are a variety of different accounts and investment services to suit different investor needs. Despite this, the account opening process is longer than usual and they do not offer CFD or cryptocurrency trading. I would say they are suitable for beginners as they aim to make the complex, simpler. From investing to financial planning and pricing, their goal is to be straightforward and help with your unique needs. I was really impressed with the industry-leading investment research and analysis that is freely available to help you with all of your trading strategies. Overall, I feel they are a good choice for anyone in the USA who is looking to trade and invest in a regulated environment with an industry leader. Otherwise, you may want to consider Charles Schwab as an alternative option.

Fidelity Logo

Min $1 Deposit

Fidelity is a US brokerage offering a broad choice of investments with competitive fees, advanced trading platforms, expert analysis and powerful tools to help you make informed decisions.

All investments involve risk, including loss of principal. Past performance does not guarantee future results.

About the Author

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Richard Montana
Richard has many years of experience in broker research, testing, analysis and reviews. He knows what to look for through years of trading himself with different brokers and listening to the feedback of others.

Review Methodology

For all of our broker reviews, we research, validate, analyse and compare what we deem to be the most important factors to consider when choosing a broker. This includes pros, cons and an overall rating based on our findings. We aim to help you find the best broker according to your own needs. You can read more about our review process.