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jadster33
Explorer ○

A 2nd Brokerage Account to complement Fidelity

I used to think that Fidelity alone was good enough.   Then I finally realized that its Mutual Fund platform was a bit limited.  Fido offers some great Load Waived NTF fund options, but there were too many funds that I wanted that Fido didn't carry, or only carried higher-fee versions or Transaction fees.

I've found that E*Trade has some great options for super-low initial minimums on MFs.  Many start at $100 per.  And I can finally buy Vanguard funds without a fee again (I hated Vanguard's brokerage and gave it up a while back).

Have others found this to be true for them - that Fido is lacking a bit its MF offerings?

 

Side note:  On the down side, I have become a FUND COLLECTOR.  But its been kind of fun.

11 Replies
ECEPROF
Participant ○

Re: A 2nd Brokerage Account to complement Fidelity

I am a Vanguard (Brokerage) guy, where I have most of my investments. However, I opened a second brokerage account with Firstrade.com. All trades are of free of charge - no fees. Besides, you also get the research from M* for free. I did not know this when I opened the account but, lately, I found it. I also use it to buy/sell individual stocks.

I understand that Robinhood is also free of fees but you have to pay $5/month to get M* research.


@jadster33 wrote:

I used to think that Fidelity alone was good enough.   Then I finally realized that its Mutual Fund platform was a bit limited.  Fido offers some great Load Waived NTF fund options, but there were too many funds that I wanted that Fido didn't carry, or only carried higher-fee versions or Transaction fees.

I've found that E*Trade has some great options for super-low initial minimums on MFs.  Many start at $100 per.  And I can finally buy Vanguard funds without a fee again (I hated Vanguard's brokerage and gave it up a while back).

Have others found this to be true for them - that Fido is lacking a bit its MF offerings?

 

Side note:  On the down side, I have become a FUND COLLECTOR.  But its been kind of fun.


 

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yogibearbull
Valued Contributor

Re: A 2nd Brokerage Account to complement Fidelity [Barron's Online Broker Rankings]

Earlier this year, there was an annual ranking of online brokers by Barron's,   https://socialize.morningstar.com/NewSocialize/forums/p/388375/3994441.aspx#3994441

There are other similar reviews.

YBB
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ECEPROF
Participant ○

Re: A 2nd Brokerage Account to complement Fidelity [Barron's Online Broker Rankings]

Yogi

Thanks for the link.

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jadster33
Explorer ○

Re: A 2nd Brokerage Account to complement Fidelity [Barron's Online Broker Rankings]

I was a little more focused on just the Mutual Fund platform, and not so much the securities trading, customer service,  website, broker ranking, etc.   

Anyway, I finally got past the whole idea of wanting only 1 brokerage account.   VGD or Fido on their own are not the greatest solutions, at least not for an expanded MF menu. 

VGD does have better in-house offerings (VWINX, VWELX, etc.) than Fido, but their back office is terrible.

I think that by offering low (even $0) minimums on MFs, even the wimpiest (or small fry) investor can feel comfortable wading in.  Loving E*Trade for that.

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ResearchMed
Explorer ○○○

Re: A 2nd Brokerage Account to complement Fidelity [Barron's Online Broker Rankings]

We currently have holdings with several vendors, in part due to constraints of 403b plans.

But we plan always to have holdings with at least two different vendors, for security.  We aren't so much worried about our money disappearing (although one can never be totally relaxed about that, these days), but rather... what if there is some "glitch" at one vendor when we need something?  Then we could turn to the other to get what we need, be it for a planned or unexpected expense.

We may end up with 3:  TIAA because of the Trad Ann and TREA; Schwab for local access and also general banking-like services; and probably either Vanguard or Fidelity, depending upon which funds we have cut back.

RM

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rila3400
Contributor ○○

Re: A 2nd Brokerage Account to complement Fidelity [Barron's Online Broker Rankings]


@jadster33 wrote:

I was a little more focused on just the Mutual Fund platform, and not so much the securities trading, customer service,  website, broker ranking, etc.   

Anyway, I finally got past the whole idea of wanting only 1 brokerage account.   VGD or Fido on their own are not the greatest solutions, at least not for an expanded MF menu. 

VGD does have better in-house offerings (VWINX, VWELX, etc.) than Fido, but their back office is terrible.

I think that by offering low (even $0) minimums on MFs, even the wimpiest (or small fry) investor can feel comfortable wading in.  Loving E*Trade for that.


I recently transferred an IRA account to Vanguard (VG).
The VG account allows access to their active funds' Admiral shares without paying transaction fees.
Also, Vanguard has certain PIMCO funds' institutional shares available with only a $25K minimum.
I would not use VG if I traded frequently.
Their website is poorly designed and resembles something you'd expect to see circa 1999.
Fidelity's website and web tools are much better.

Note: I have a taxable Vanguard account opened years ago and still have several Fidelity accounts.

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rforno
Participant ○

Re: A 2nd Brokerage Account to complement Fidelity

 

I'm tempted to move some funds to another brokerage to compare things against my current brokerage TDA, which I've been with since the mid-00s and as a ThinkorSwim customer.   I love their ThinkorSwim platform for active trading (not that I do much) and options analytics but their website has many annoyances to me ... heck, it was only last year that they released a tool to show you estimated portfolio income on a monthly/annual basis. 

Their cash sweep options suck, too.

Currently eyeing Schwab, but might give ETrade a second look again - I had them 20 years ago as the required broker for my stock options.   Both offer access to international equity markets, which could be handy.

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Kenster-man
Explorer ○○

Re: A 2nd Brokerage Account to complement Fidelity


@ECEPROF wrote:

I am a Vanguard (Brokerage) guy, where I have most of my investments. However, I opened a second brokerage account with Firstrade.com.  All trades are of free of charge - no fees. Besides, you also get the research from M* for free.  I did not know this when I opened the account but, lately, I found it. I also use it to buy/sell individual stocks.

I understand that Robinhood is also free of fees but you have to pay $5/month to get M* research.


How's your experience so far with Firstrade in terms of web experience, buying/transacting on purchases, etc.?

 

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chang
Valued Contributor

Re: A 2nd Brokerage Account to complement Fidelity

I love TDA for service, online platform/tools and fund supermarket. A great complement to Fido. Some things better, some things perhaps not as good.

I reopened a VG Acct this year so I could invest easily in VG funds. They simply have too many good funds without equivalents.
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ECEPROF
Participant ○

Re: A 2nd Brokerage Account to complement Fidelity

 


@Kenster-man wrote:

@ECEPROF wrote:

I am a Vanguard (Brokerage) guy, where I have most of my investments. However, I opened a second brokerage account with Firstrade.com.  All trades are of free of charge - no fees. Besides, you also get the research from M* for free.  I did not know this when I opened the account but, lately, I found it. I also use it to buy/sell individual stocks.

I understand that Robinhood is also free of fees but you have to pay $5/month to get M* research.


How's your experience so far with Firstrade in terms of web experience, buying/transacting on purchases, etc.?

 


I have given my experience here. Also, I usually get a better price in Firstrade than Vanguard because Firstrade prices are live (just like M* and Yahoo Finance) whereas Vanguard prices are 20 minutes delayed. So, when I set up a buy/sell ETFs in Vanguard, I use the Firstrade screen on one side and Vanguard on another screen. I use the Firstrade price movements to set up the trades. One thing for sure, you may never be able to buy or sell at those prices in Vanguard but it will definitely go through Firstrade. It is strange but it is true because Vanguard platform is very sluggish where Firstrade platform is excellent.

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pjmetz
Follower ○○

Re: A 2nd Brokerage Account to complement Fidelity

I wonder how they make any money if they don't charge commissions? 

Now that Morningstar has gutted its service, getting free at Firstrade sounds like a good idea.

 

Paula

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