General

Which Brokerage Is Best for You?

Fidelity vs. Robinhood: The biggest differences

Fidelity and Robinhood are two top platforms in the


online brokerage

space. While both offer commission-free stocks, ETFs, and options, the two differ when it comes to fees, available investment and account types, features, and more.

Fidelity is the best choice for most types of investors. Whether you’re a beginner or experienced trader, active or infrequent investor, or hands-off investor, the brokerage has an account option for you. It also offers investment perks like zero-


expense ratio

index funds.

Robinhood, however, is a better choice for both frequent traders, options traders, and crypto traders who want access to a simple investing interface. Unlike Fidelity, Robinhood charges $ 0 for options contract, and it offers more than 10 cryptocurrencies.

Account Minimum

$ 0 ($ 25,000 Fidelity Personalized Planning & Advice)

Fees

0% ($ 0, $ 3 / month, or 0.35% for robo-advisor)

Investment Types

Stocks, ETFs, options, mutual funds, bonds, CDs, annuities, and IPOs

Account Minimum

$ 0 ($ 25,000 Fidelity Personalized Planning & Advice)

Fees

0% ($ 0, $ 3 / month, or 0.35% for robo-advisor)

Investment Types

Stocks, ETFs, options, mutual funds, bonds, CDs, annuities, and IPOs

Pros

  • No account minimum or account fees
  • No commissions for stock, ETFs, and options trades; fractional shares available
  • Thousands of no-transaction-fee mutual funds and fee-free mutual funds
  • Several research tools and trading platforms available

Cons

  • Fidelity Go accounts cost more for investors with higher account balances
  • Representative-assisted trades are slightly more expensive than other brokerages
  • No cryptocurrencies

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More Information

  • App store rating: 4.8 iOS / 4.3 Android
  • Consider it if: You’re focused on long-term investing and retirement.

Account Minimum

$ 0 ($ 1 for fractional shares; $ 2,000 for Robinhood Gold)

Investment Types

Stocks, ETFs, options, cryptocurrencies, IPOs, and ADRs

Account Minimum

$ 0 ($ 1 for fractional shares; $ 2,000 for Robinhood Gold)

Investment Types

Stocks, ETFs, options, cryptocurrencies, IPOs, and ADRs

Pros

  • Free stock, option, ETF, and cryptocurrency trades
  • IPO investing available
  • Fractional shares and margin investing
  • Cash management accounts available
  • Website is easy to navigate

Cons

  • Lack of investing research and trading tools; can only take advantage of professional research if you’re a Robinhood Gold member
  • No retirement accounts, joint accounts, education savings accounts, or mutual funds
  • Limited customer service availability
  • Doesn’t offer automatic transfer on death or allow users to name beneficiaries

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More Information

  • App store rating: 4.2 iOS / 3.8 Android
  • Consider it if: You want to invest in a wide range of stocks and ETFs.

Fidelity and Robinhood’s features and account options also vary.

Is Fidelity right for you?

Fidelity has something for almost every type of investor. The online brokerage offers self-directed accounts, automated investing accounts (also known as robo-advisors), custodial accounts, IRAs, 529 plans, and much more. Plus, its low-cost investment choices make it even more suitable for those looking to minimize fees when trading.

Fidelity currently offers no-minimum mutual funds and commission-free stocks, ETFs, and options. It also offers its own Fidelity-managed zero-expense ratio index funds, meaning you won’t have to worry about fund fees when investing in different assets.

Unlike Robinhood, Fidelity has two accounts that cater more toward hands-off investors: Fidelity Go and Fidelity Personalized Planning & Advice. The two robo-advisors create personalized, self-managing portfolios based on your investing goals. However, Fidelity Go doesn’t allow for one-on-one human advisor guidance, but Fidelity Personalized Planning & Advice does.

This brokerage could also be a great option if you’re interested in retirement accounts like IRAs. Its selection – which includes traditional IRAs, Roth IRAs, rollover IRAs, Roth IRAs for Kids, SEP IRAs, and SIMPLE IRAs – applies to both individuals with taxable income, self-employed individuals, and businesses.

Fidelity also offers multiple trading platforms. These include its web platform, mobile apps, and Active Trader Pro platform. Active Trader Pro best suits frequent traders who want to take advantage of perks like real-time price analytics, portfolio monitoring tools, and much more.

Fidelity is available on iOS and Android devices.

Read Personal Finance Insider’s complete review of Fidelity here »

Is Robinhood right for you?

Robinhood is best for active traders (though you can also use its platform to practice buy-and-hold strategies), options traders, margin traders, and crypto investors. When it comes to account types, the online brokerage offers individual investment accounts, margin accounts, and cash management accounts.

Plus, you can exchange stocks, ETFs, and options (these include a $ 0.65 options contract fee) commission-free, and Robinhood also allows for ADR and cryptocurrency investing. Its crypto selection includes assets like bitcoin, ethereum, dogecoin, and more.

While Robinhood’s individual investment accounts don’t have any minimum requirements, you’ll need at least $ 2,000 for margin trading, which is only available through Robinhood Gold. The Robinhood Gold subscription costs $ 5 per month, but it offers the following: margin trading at a 3% interest rate, larger instant deposits of $ 5,000- $ 50,000, and access to Nasdaq market data and 1,700+ Morningstar stock research reports.

If you’re a beginner investor looking to pack on more knowledge about various wealth-building topics, Robinhood also offers a digital library that contains educational guides on things like investing 101, options trading, and much more.

Robinhood is available on iOS and Android devices.

Read Personal Finance Insider’s complete review of Robinhood here »