Comparing brokers side by side is no easy task. For our annual broker review, we assess over a dozen brokers on hundreds of different variables to find the best online broker. Yielding a database of over 4,000 data points, let's compare Charles Schwab vs Fidelity.
To start this comparison, first, we will take a look at the online broker commission rates for placing regular stock and options trades. Charles Schwab and Fidelity both cost $0 per trade. With options, the base fee is $0 for both Charles Schwab and Fidelity. Option contracts run $0.65 a piece at both brokerages. It's important to note that not all brokers charge a flat fee per trade. Thus, it is important to read the full commission notes for each broker, which we include with each online broker review.
Next to commission rates, being able to trade what you want is important. Fidelity offers clients Stock Trading, Options Trading and Mutual Funds while Charles Schwab offers Stock Trading, Options Trading, Mutual Funds and Futures Trading. Looking at mutual funds, Charles Schwab trails Fidelity by 5,936 total mutual funds, with Fidelity offering 11782 and Charles Schwab offering 5846.
Trading access aside, by comparing popular features and functionality, we can break down relevant differences between both brokers. Neither Charles Schwab and Fidelity offer virtual trading. Taking a look at mobile trading, Both Charles Schwab and Fidelity offer clients access to an iPhone App, iPad App and Android App. Not to be left out, online banking is also a nice benefit for many investors, and some brokerages provide these services to clients. Clients can have Checking Accounts, Savings Accounts, Debit Cards and Credit Cards at Fidelity while customers at Charles Schwab can have Checking Accounts, Savings Accounts, Debit Cards, Credit Cards and Mortgage Loans.
Overall, between Charles Schwab and Fidelity, Fidelity is the winner.
Charles Schwab Review