Thinkorswim vs. Fidelity



Fidelity vs Thinkorswim: Pricing, Commissions, Fees



Fidelity Investments


Thinkorswim

  • Stocks and ETFs: $7.95
  • Stocks and ETFs broker assisted: $32.95
  • Options: $7.95 + $0.75 per contract
  • Mutual funds: $49.95 ($75 for some funds; Fidelity funds are commission free) to buy; $0 to sell ($49.95 if sold within 60 days)
  • Bonds (U.S. Treasury Auctions, including TIPS Auctions, U.S. Treasury Bills, Notes), primary market CDs: on a net yield basis
  • GSE (Agency Securities), secondary CDs, Municipals, Corporates (BBB- or higher), CATS/TIGRS, Corporates (BB+ or lower): $1 per bond ($250 max; $50 max if maturing in one year)
  • Commercial Paper: $50 per transaction
  • Investment products: stocks, bonds, mutual funds, options, commercial paper, UITs, ETFs
  • Fidelity minimum deposit to open account: $2,500 ($0 for Rollover IRA; $2,500 or $200 per month for ROTH and Traditional IRA)
  • All Fidelity fees
  • Fidelity Investments login, Fidelity promotion

  • Stocks and ETFs: $9.99
  • Stocks and ETFs broker assisted: $49.99
  • Options: $9.99 + $0.75 per contract
  • No-load mutual funds: $49.99
  • Treasuries at auction: $25
  • All other bonds and CMOs, CDs: on a net yield basis
  • Futures: $2.25 per contract (plus exchange & regulatory fees)
  • Forex: Non-commission currency pairs trade in increments of 10,000 units (and do not contain a "#" symbol suffix). There are no additional fees or charges.
  • Investment products: stocks, mutual funds, options, ETFs, bonds, CDs, UITs, futures, and forex
  • Thinkorswim\TOS minimum deposit to open account: $0 for cash account, $2,000 for margin account
  • All Thinkorswim fees
  • Thinkorswim login, Thinkorswim promotion and Thinkorswim referral




Fidelity Investments vs Thinkorswim: Pros



Fidelity Investments


Thinkorswim

  • No surcharges on penny stocks, large orders, or after-hours trading
  • Great investment research tools with large selection of independent research from 12 firms
  • Good selection of commission-free mutual funds
  • Free DRIPs (dividend reinvestment plans)
  • No account maintenance or inactivity fees
  • Great customer service
  • Good banking services (checking, savings accounts, and credit cards)
  • 91 commission-free ETFs

  • Best trading platform on the market
  • No surcharges on penny stocks, large orders, or after-hours trading
  • Trading with one of the largest and well-known brokerage houses in the country
  • Users can practice trading without risking real money using PaperMoney virtual trading account
  • Easy access to myTRADE trader community
  • No-fee IRA accounts
  • No account maintenance or inactivity fees
  • Free streaming quotes, including Level II
  • Rich selection of independent, third-party research from 13 firms (Standard & Poor's, Morningstar, Jaywalk, TheStreet, and others)
  • 100+ ETFs with no commissions




Fidelity Investments vs Thinkorswim: Cons



Fidelity Investments


Thinkorswim

  • Very high commissions - $49.95 ($75 for some funds) - to purchase non-Fidelity mutual funds
  • $12 annual Low Balance Fee for each noncore Fidelity mutual fund if balance is under $2,000
  • High margin rates
  • Advanced trading platform, Active Trader Pro, is available only to clients making 36+ trades per year
  • High $2,500 minimum to open an account

  • Higher than the average commissions on many investment products
  • High margin rates




TD Ameritrade Thinkorswim vs Fidelity: Comparison Summary



Fidelity Investments (Fidelity Review) and TD Ameritrade together with Thinkorswim (Thinkorswim Review) are some of the largest brokerage houses in the nation. TD Ameritrade charges $9.99 and Fidelity $7.95 per stock and ETF trade. Mutual funds are $49.95 at TDA and $49.95 ($75 for some funds) at the competitor. Both firms don't have account inactivity and maintenance fees as well as surcharges on large orders, penny stocks and after-hours trading.

TD Ameritrade bought one of the best online brokers - ThinkorSwim - and it has benefited greatly from this acquisition. The firm provides access to great independent, third-party investment research, free virtual trading (called paper trading), an easy access to online investor community, free streaming quotes, and the best trading platform in the industry.

The two brokerages offer their customers very rich selection of investment products. Fidelity Investments also provides many commission-free Fidelity-family mutual funds. The firm, however, charges mutual fund related fees, which could significantly reduce returns for customers investing in them. Fidelity offers its more active clients Active Trader Pro trading platform which is pretty good, though professional traders still prefer ThinkorSwim.

Fidelity Investments and TD Ameritrade do not have IRA setup and annual IRA fees, and we recommend TD Ameritrade for a fee-free IRA account.

Out of these online brokers, TD Ameritrade would be our recommendation to most investors. Fidelity Investments is, obviously, the way to go if you are looking to invest mostly in Fidelity-family mutual funds.


Updated on 1/12/2017.



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