Using data from our latest annual broker review which tested more than a dozen different online brokers over six months, we can compare Charles Schwab vs Fidelity to determine which broker is best. Let's dive in.
First, we will break down the commission charges of both brokers for placing stock and options trades. Charles Schwab and Fidelity charge the same amount for regular stock trades, $0. Looking at options, the base fees charged are the same for both brokers, $0. Option contracts at both of the brokerages are the same at $0.65 each. Instead of flat rate fees, several brokers charge a per-share fee instead. For a complete review of trading charges, read our full online broker reviews.
Next, investors want to make sure they can trade the investment vehicle they want. Fidelity supports Stock Trading, Options Trading and Mutual Funds while Charles Schwab supports Stock Trading, Options Trading, Mutual Funds and Futures Trading. As far as mutual funds go, Fidelity offers its clients access to 11246 different mutual funds while Charles Schwab has 9978 available funds, a difference of 1,268.
Finally, by comparing the each broker's website and platform features, we can surface interesting differences. Neither Charles Schwab and Fidelity offer virtual trading. For mobile trading, Both Charles Schwab and Fidelity offer clients access to an iPhone App, iPad App and Android App. Online banking is also used by many customers, and multiple full-service brokerages provide these services. Checking Accounts, Savings Accounts, Debit Cards and Credit Cards are available to clients of Fidelity while Charles Schwab offers customers Checking Accounts, Savings Accounts, Debit Cards, Credit Cards and Mortgage Loans.
Overall, between Charles Schwab and Fidelity, Fidelity is the winner.
Charles Schwab Review