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Schwab or Fidelity
Old 11-23-2011, 03:24 PM   #1
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Schwab or Fidelity

Looking for advice for someone choosing between the two companies for rollover IRA and other accounts for individual stocks only.
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Old 11-23-2011, 03:30 PM   #2
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I haven't tried Schwab, but I have compared Fidelity with several others and Fidelity has been a good step better.
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Old 11-23-2011, 04:09 PM   #3
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Schwab has some local offices you can visit. Would that be important to you?
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Old 11-23-2011, 04:12 PM   #4
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Have always been with Schwab. They offer everything you'll need and their customer service is outstanding. Never a complaint.
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Old 11-23-2011, 04:28 PM   #5
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Schwab has some local offices you can visit. Would that be important to you?
As do Fidelity.

We've been with both companies, and I could not say that one was better than the other.
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Old 11-23-2011, 05:13 PM   #6
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I used Schwab years ago but they annoyed me one time too many.
I have consistently been delighted with Fidelity customer service and available resources.
Just my tuppence.
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Old 11-23-2011, 05:17 PM   #7
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As do Fidelity.

We've been with both companies, and I could not say that one was better than the other.
Same here -- it's hard for me to see that one would be appreciably better than the other and both would be good choices for most folks.
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Old 11-23-2011, 06:08 PM   #8
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Either. As somebody, I think Ha Ha, said if the rest of service industries in America provided the same level of high quality service that Fidelity or Schwab (and generally Vanguard) life would be much better.
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Old 11-23-2011, 06:19 PM   #9
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TD Ameritrade has the best training program IMO to take you to the next level. Been with both Fidelity and Schwab and recently switched.
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Old 11-23-2011, 06:24 PM   #10
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Happy Fidelity and Vanguard customer here, no experience with Schwab.
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Old 11-23-2011, 08:34 PM   #11
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I have used Schwab for about 12 years now, individual stocks only, in rollover IRAs, Roths, and non-tax-advantaged accounts.. They have been helpful when I needed help (not often) and leave me alone the rest of the time. No complaints.
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Old 11-23-2011, 08:52 PM   #12
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I have read that Schwab has a debit card for access to your retirement accounts that will refund ATM fees and charges for converting currency when used overseas. I do not know if Fido has anything comparable.

This is worth checking out for those who have international travel/residency in mind after retirement.
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Old 11-23-2011, 09:29 PM   #13
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I have read that Schwab has a debit card for access to your retirement accounts that will refund ATM fees and charges for converting currency when used overseas. I do not know if Fido has anything comparable.

This is worth checking out for those who have international travel/residency in mind after retirement.
Fido also has a no fee Visa debit card which refunds all ATM fees and only charges foreign exchange fees at 1% instead of standard 3% used by most credit card issuers. (must be at Premium Client level or signed up for cash management account to get full ATM fee reinburse.) Also offers additional benefits of
Extended warranty services for first 90 days from date of purchase
Travel and Emergency Assistance
Worldwide Travel Accident Insurance
Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver

See link for details. Fidelity Visa Gold Check Card (ATM/Debit Card)
Have used across Europe and Turkey with no problems
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Old 11-24-2011, 06:26 AM   #14
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Fido also has a no fee Visa debit card which refunds all ATM fees and only charges foreign exchange fees at 1% instead of standard 3% used by most credit card issuers. (must be at Premium Client level or signed up for cash management account to get full ATM fee reinburse.) Also offers additional benefits of
Extended warranty services for first 90 days from date of purchase
Travel and Emergency Assistance
Worldwide Travel Accident Insurance
Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver

See link for details. Fidelity Visa Gold Check Card (ATM/Debit Card)
Have used across Europe and Turkey with no problems
Nwsteve
Thanks, Steve,

Several interesting features to that one.
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Old 11-24-2011, 07:20 AM   #15
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They really do compete head-to-head and service is great with both of them. I have all my retirement money at fidelity, and non-retirement money at schwab. As an active trader, I prefer the real-time trading tools from schwab however.
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Old 11-24-2011, 08:57 AM   #16
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Fidelity and Vanguard here. I have the 2% back Fidelity credit card and have a Fidelity brick and mortar place a couple of miles away.
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Old 11-24-2011, 10:09 AM   #17
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No brick and mortar locations near me with any of them. If one had been near by, I would have gone with that one. I have only used Fido but I would imagine VG or CS would be fine.
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Old 11-24-2011, 10:57 AM   #18
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They really do compete head-to-head and service is great with both of them. I have all my retirement money at fidelity, and non-retirement money at schwab. As an active trader, I prefer the real-time trading tools from schwab however.

Yep, competition is great. For example, when I mentioned to Schwab that I didn't like paying a commission to purchase Vanguard funds in my Schwab account, they quickly responded by eliminating commissions for my Vanguard purchases.

I'm happy with Schwab. But I'm sure that if I was with Fido, I'd be happy there too.
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Old 11-24-2011, 11:14 AM   #19
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Yep, competition is great. For example, when I mentioned to Schwab that I didn't like paying a commission to purchase Vanguard funds in my Schwab account, they quickly responded by eliminating commissions for my Vanguard purchases.

I'm happy with Schwab. But I'm sure that if I was with Fido, I'd be happy there too.
What I don't understand is how these high-service discounters can stay in business. You get a very high level service in return for having a larger account. But you don't have to trade that account. You don't have to buy Fidelity funds. You don't have to buy their brokered annuities or CDs. As far as I know you can just let a portfolio of stocks and bonds sit there, and still get a very high level of service.

Do enough people buy management services, or use Fidelity Funds, or trade enough to make them profitable? I imagine Fido and Schwab get some rake off the credit card, and that many account holders use this card.

My former manager at Bank of America was out front that if I wanted free checking, I had to use more paid services.

Fidelity even has a page now where you can see what you have spent in commissions, I think YTD. Theoretically, it might be zero or very close to that.

Ha
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Old 11-24-2011, 11:44 AM   #20
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What I don't understand is how these high-service discounters can stay in business. You get a very high level service in return for having a larger account. But you don't have to trade that account. You don't have to buy Fidelity funds. You don't have to buy their brokered annuities or CDs. As far as I know you can just let a portfolio of stocks and bonds sit there, and still get a very high level of service.

Do enough people buy management services, or use Fidelity Funds, or trade enough to make them profitable? I imagine Fido and Schwab get some rake off the credit card, and that many account holders use this card.

My former manager at Bank of America was out front that if I wanted free checking, I had to use more paid services.

Fidelity even has a page now where you can see what you have spent in commissions, I think YTD. Theoretically, it might be zero or very close to that.

Ha
I agree. Sometimes I'm amazed at the service level I receive despite not being an active trader or using any paid services. I do a dozen or two commissioned trades ($8.95) per year and that's about it. Yet I get capable help whenever I want it in regard to handling "hardware" issues.

For example, my wife and adult son are annoyingly disinterested in investing. Therefore we decided dad should have POA at the appropriate level on their various accounts and have access to all accounts on the web site along with all accounts showing up in my summaries, etc., etc. When I called and asked what to do, the rep suggested the 3 of us just give him a couple of days and we could come in and sign the papers. We did. Everything was ready (lotsa forms, all filled in with everything but our signatures) and after we were given a good explanation of how everything would work, we signed and left with our copies. This was nothing I couldn't have eventually figured out myself, downloaded the forms from the website, etc., but it was nice to not have to. Especially since some of the situations were a tad complicated such as how to handle the Coverdale Educational IRA's which my son owns for the kids but I fund and manage.

I'm sure Fido customers get the same deal. But, like you, I'm surprised at the service level these discount brokers give given that I work hard to avoid paying any management fees, minimize commissions, etc.
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