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Old 07-29-2020, 04:08 PM   #101
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had a question about the Fido retirement planning tool and was informed that my advisor (Jared Mabey) was the one to talk with. He and I spoke today and he was useless. Now, I have to start bugging Fido for an answer.
Today, I used the contact us by email form and asked my question.
Got a call from a guy in the local office who actually researched the answer.
I am happy again.
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Old 07-29-2020, 04:31 PM   #102
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Originally Posted by davebarnes View Post
Today, I used the contact us by email form and asked my question.
Got a call from a guy in the local office who actually researched the answer.
I am happy again.
You should not have to do this. I suggest that you call the branch and talk to the manager, tell him that you are unhappy with the rep assigned. Ideally, have a list of things you'd prefer in a new rep. Things like experience level, age, sex, investment philosophy, tenure at Fido, etc. For example, you might want a woman if you expect that your wife might be dealing with the portfolio and for sure you want someone who resonates with your investment philosophy. Ask the manager if you can interview his/her first and second choices. Then decide.

Every company has dud employees; that's not really a negative on Fido. It's how they deal with it that will tell you the real story.
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Old 07-29-2020, 07:10 PM   #103
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Why not keep it simple and just tell the truth?

It seems like you incurred quite the hassle by layering false statements (by you own admission) on top of one another.

What if you had actually told the truth?
You seem to have missed the crucial detail that the security department required proof that I lived in Florida that was unreasonable. Credit card statement and utilities bill.

I was told that if I couldn't produce those things I would not be given access to my accounts. NOTHING ELSE I SAID MATTERED.
If you were living at your daughters house in Florida and didn't use a credit card could you would not have been able to give them the required documents either.

The OP is living outside the USA. Because of the Patriot Act USA Financial institutions don't like doing business with US citizens living abroad and require us to jump through hoops that you don't have to.

I always use a VPN in Miami. IP address has nothing to do with this issue. If it had they would have told me that they suspected unauthorized use from outside the USA.
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Old 07-29-2020, 07:13 PM   #104
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You should not have to do this. I suggest that you call the branch and talk to the manager
The guy who called me has the title of “relationship representative”. I told him how unhappy I was with my current advisor. He said: “will talk with my manager”. There is a junior guy (Michael Clark) that I really like and I said: “Don’t care what Michael’s title is, just dump me on him”.

We shall see.
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Old 07-29-2020, 07:17 PM   #105
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Do I understand correctly?

You attempted a trade while in Thailand and Vanguard blocked it? You understand they can "see" where you are? They likely locked your account fearing it's been hacked. Your physical address in Florida isn't == your IP in Thailand. Checks like this are common in financial applications and may go way beyond a simple ip.

When you talked to their security people you misinformed them about your whereabouts? Vanguard, like the rest of the industry, understands US citizens living abroad, certain parts of their processes depend upon it. How can tax reporting work for non residents if you don't allow for people living abroad? If you had told them they could have worked with you.The only thing that surprises me is they allowed you to transfer out.
I always use a VPN in Miami.

Did you read the part about the OP living outside the USA?
Your only guessing about how Vanguard treats International accounts you don't have any actual experience. Do you?
I do!
That's why I have accounts with Fidelity, Schwab and Merrill Lynch.
The OP isn't in the USA and should keep ALL his accounts open until he returns.
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Old 07-29-2020, 07:24 PM   #106
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One thing I don’t like about Fido’s customer service is they have different groups for workplace accounts. That makes sense but since I have two 401k accounts I get bounced around sometimes. They do have an efficient system to transfer me from one group to another. I’m hoping to establish a relationship with an individual at the new office that just opened 10 miles away but it might be asking too much to be assigned to a seasoned rep that stays in this location. That would be good for DW if I’m not around.
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Old 07-29-2020, 09:49 PM   #107
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I just rolled over my 401k from Fidelity to Vanguard to simplify my life. Fidelity insisted on mailing me a check and is making more money on the float.

Fidelity is the only one of the big 3 with HSA, which stays there.

In late March I rolled over my company profit sharing to Vanguard at the December 2019 valuation.

I decided to pay for advice (0.3%) on that account and am very glad I listened to VG instead of following my plan to dollar cost average back into the market, which looked pretty bleak at the time.

I liked Fidelity service at the time I opened the HSA, not so much recently.

I’m able to reach the VG advisor every time, and he follows up way better than the advisor I fired for bloated costs in April.
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Old 07-29-2020, 11:57 PM   #108
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But .. as discussed, someone has to pay the brokerage firms' costs, so all three of them are undoubtedly scouring the customer lists and scouring their operations costs looking to pick up enough pennies to run the business. Until that process runs its course we will not know where we as customers stand. For example, Schwab made their sweep account into an FDIC insured bank account, substantially increasing their income on customers' float. Fido did not do this and has been advertising the fact. Will Schwab reverse their decision or will Fido join them? No way to know. Schwab also revised their compensation plan (apparently) to put more emphasis on higher-profit services. So will their people become more aggressive/like Fido's?What about Vanguard? Who knows?
What about Vanguard? Gosh, look no further than Vanguard's BIG push into advice services. Since a lot of this is computer driven, there's tremendous economies of scale given their asset base.
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Old 08-01-2020, 10:03 AM   #109
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Between the two choices I was leaning Fidelity, but just now for the second time in a few years I logged into Fidelity to find a 0 balance.

There is probably a very reasonable explanation for this, and if I didn't feel pretty sure there must be I wouldn't be looking on this forum to see if anyone else is having issues or typing this post.

The last time this happened, my old company was bought by another company, so my 401(k) moved to a different plan. I had no idea that was coming (although to be fair I think I did later find communication about it in email or mail that I had ignored) and logged in one day to find an empty 401(k) and an extra new empty 401(k) from a company I never had a 401(k) at but confusingly had worked before as a contractor and briefly as an employee.

I'm not sure what's up this time, but I've rather recently rolled my 401(k)s into an IRA and Roth IRA and traded all my open-ended funds for ETFs. My IRA and Roth IRA are just missing from my accounts list now.

Edit: My accounts and money are back now. I just logged in a while later and never even bothered calling support. So I guess it was weekend maintenance, but wow that's an unpleasant site to see.
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Old 08-01-2020, 10:12 AM   #110
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Between the two choices I was leaning Fidelity, but just now for the second time in a few years I logged into Fidelity to find a 0 balance.

There is probably a very reasonable explanation for this, and if I didn't feel pretty sure there must be I wouldn't be looking on this forum to see if anyone else is having issues or typing this post.

The last time this happened, my old company was bought by another company, so my 401(k) moved to a different plan. I had no idea that was coming (although to be fair I think I did later find communication about it in email or mail that I had ignored) and logged in one day to find an empty 401(k) and an extra new empty 401(k) from a company I never had a 401(k) at but confusingly had worked before as a contractor and briefly as an employee.

I'm not sure what's up this time, but I've rather recently rolled my 401(k)s into an IRA and Roth IRA and traded all my open-ended funds for ETFs. My IRA and Roth IRA are just missing from my accounts list now.
Made me look.
Lastly time it happened to me was during the spring crash. Today my balance was there.
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Old 08-01-2020, 10:12 AM   #111
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What about Vanguard? Gosh, look no further than Vanguard's BIG push into advice services. Since a lot of this is computer driven, there's tremendous economies of scale given their asset base.
Absolutely. In fact I think Vanguard's status as a mutual company is A Good Thing but is somewhat overrated. It has to make a profit in order to have funds to reinvest in the business and the people that work there want to grow their salaries. In those respects they are no different that the competition.

But I also think it doesn't matter directly. Savvy investors (rare breed, I know) will and should seek out and buy the best products regardless of who is offering them. If VG's corporate organization is an advantage, that will show up in the products. (Which IMO it did for many years.)
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Old 08-01-2020, 10:20 AM   #112
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Why not both?
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Old 08-06-2020, 02:30 PM   #113
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Like the free international atm at Fido (also schwab).
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Originally Posted by 2cheap2eat View Post
Since the Intl ATMs are very important, Fidelity is easy choice for you.
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Originally Posted by OldShooter View Post
Same thing with the Schwab bank debit card. All ATM fees rebated worldwide and no foreign transaction fees.
Based on this thread, and "free international ATM", I took action: clicked the "send me a debit card" on the Fidelity site.

Reading the paperwork that came with it (from BNY Mellon):

Quote:
2.5.3 Foreign Transaction Fee. For each Foreign Transaction, there is a foreign Transaction fee (currently, one percent of the Transaction for non-U.S. dollar Transactions), which will be included in the amount charged to your Account. This charge may apply whether or not there is a currency conversion.
Quote:
2.6 Fees. A one dollar ($1.00) charge may be assessed for each ATM Withdrawal and Cash Advance. Normal charges for other Account activities will continue to apply. If you requested a copy of a sales draft, your account will be charged three dollars ($3.00) per sales draft.
...
Please refer to your specific Fidelity account Customer Agreement for the terms surrounding reimbursement of fees.
None of the paperwork in the envelope talked about reimbursement of fees, so I searched for the Customer Agreement on the Fidelity site and found a 78 page monstrosity that included:
Quote:
For Fidelity Account ® owners coded Premium, Private Client Group,
Wealth Management, or with household annual trading activity of 120 or
more stock, bond, or options trades, your account will automatically be
reimbursed for all ATM fees charged by other institutions while using the
Fidelity ® Debit Card at any ATM displaying the Visa ® , Plus ® or Star ® logos
The header on my Fidelity account says "Fidelity Premium Services", so I guess I get the ATM fees reimbursed. But the agreement also says:
Quote:
Please note there may be a foreign transaction
fee of 1% included in the amount charged to your account.
So, at Fidelity, not "Free international ATM access". Not bad, but not free. If the current Schwab offer is no foreign transaction fee, that beats the Fidelity offering.
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Old 08-06-2020, 02:43 PM   #114
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Yes, Schwab's debit card has always had no foreign transaction fee and reimbursement of any other machine fees. I've used it all over the world to get local cash from ATMs and never paid a cent. Good currency conversion rate as well.
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Old 08-06-2020, 03:52 PM   #115
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Yes, Schwab's debit card has always had no foreign transaction fee and reimbursement of any other machine fees. I've used it all over the world to get local cash from ATMs and never paid a cent. Good currency conversion rate as well.
+1 I don't use ATMs a lot, but almost every statement has a credit for a few bucks in fees and it is much more when we are traveling.

DW has a Wells debit card. It's our backup in case the Schwab card doesn't work for some reason but haven't had to use it lately. The Schwab card has been good. Problems with debit and credit cards have pretty well disappeared in recent years even in third world countries like Myanmar and Ethiopia.
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Old 08-07-2020, 12:18 AM   #116
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Based on this thread, and "free international ATM", I took action: clicked the "send me a debit card" on the Fidelity site.

Reading the paperwork that came with it (from BNY Mellon):

None of the paperwork in the envelope talked about reimbursement of fees, so I searched for the Customer Agreement on the Fidelity site and found a 78 page monstrosity that included:
The header on my Fidelity account says "Fidelity Premium Services", so I guess I get the ATM fees reimbursed. But the agreement also says: So, at Fidelity, not "Free international ATM access". Not bad, but not free. If the current Schwab offer is no foreign transaction fee, that beats the Fidelity offering.
Are the terms you have copied and pasted from Fidelity a mix of both their ATM and credit card (ELAN) offerings? I have not traveled internationally since January but I did not get charged any ATM fees or extra fees on either my Schwab or Fidelity ATM withdrawals in 2019. There was a difference in how the two companies reimbursed, with one crediting the foreign ATM fee charge immediately, the other at the end of the monthly billing cycle.

When using my Fidelity (ELAN) CC the 2% cash back worked overseas but the 1% foreign transaction fee made it effectively into a 1% cash back card.
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Old 08-07-2020, 11:57 AM   #117
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Are the terms you have copied and pasted from Fidelity a mix of both their ATM and credit card (ELAN) offerings?
It was from the BNY debit card fine-print paper that was delivered with the card, plus the Fidelity "Customer Agreement" PDF (which covers the ATM fee reimbursement).[/quote]

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When using my Fidelity (ELAN) CC the 2% cash back worked overseas but the 1% foreign transaction fee made it effectively into a 1% cash back card.
I also have the Elan card, but my post was focused on getting "coin of the realm" without up-charge, while traveling. My preference is to use credit card for everything, but sometimes, you get raked over the coals or you can't even do what you want unless you have some of their currency. OT, but I find that it's a pain to time it just right (such that you're left with zero balance of foreign currency upon exiting the country), but someone shared a tip here to use all of your pocket cash to pay for your hotel on checkout, and make up the balance with your credit card.
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Old 08-07-2020, 12:20 PM   #118
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Choose a fund with the lowest cost and other fees. All funds and all companies are the same. Best income fund is Schwab Intelligent Portfolio and best investment is Vanguard VTSAX.
I don't think much difference is between VG and FI but FI does have four index funds with zero expense ratio. VG charges 0.04% for them (cheaper with admiral variant).
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Old 08-07-2020, 12:41 PM   #119
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... Best income fund is Schwab Intelligent Portfolio and best investment is Vanguard VTSAX.
Wow. Somehow I missed this one. I guess they can close down the forum now that we have been given Universal Truths.
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Old Today, 02:01 AM   #120
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I've been following these Fidelity or Vanguard threads here and at Bogleheads....I have mot of my portfolio in VG and another part of it in TSP. I bank with credit unions mainly (outside of USAA which I'm looking to eventually drop as a banking alternative). I live overseas currently, so the foreign transaction fees make a big difference to me. I have five credit cards, two of which are for my business expenses only for my consulting. Andrews FCU has a credit card with no foreign transaction fees; Service Credit Union has a credit card with no foreign transaction fees and with direct deposit offers rebates on ATM withdrawal fees; my other business card is affiliated with my business credit union account - I don't use it. USAA used to offer a non-foreign transaction fee card, but that changed somehow a few years ago - they keep switching me around - for that reason and others, I am minimizing my interactions with USAA.

I had Fidelity a long time ago and have used USAA (when they had securities), but consolidated with VG years ago. So far, so good, but I don't do anything complex with them; the latest big transaction was a transfer of money from an employers IRA to my personal IRA - had to be done with wet signatures and mail - that as a pain in the petootie, but I gather that's due to federal regulatory requirements for rollovers/etc, even though my former employer used VG as their 'retirement program' manager.

I do like the idea of the credit cards and cash back, etc, but I don't know that I'm disciplined enough to track that carefully enough so I don't get dinged due to a balance requirement or redemptions, etc. I've tried to go for strict cash back cards that also meet my no foreign transaction fees requirement. Also, note, that these cards as well as the exchange agencies still make money on the transaction with regard to exchange rates. You will pay, it is just best to pay at the international rate. Always choose to pay in the local currency when asked, as I understand you get a better exchange rate.

I will stay at VG for now....will be rolling TSP over in the future for ROTH conversions (unless somehow, some way, TSP will allow that some day).
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