Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

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TheTimeLord
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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity

Post by TheTimeLord » Wed Jan 18, 2017 12:09 pm

*3!4!/5! wrote:
brad.clarkston wrote:I substitute FID's Premium Class funds for VG Admiral Class without any problems

Fidelity Total Market Index Fund Premium Class (FSTVX) -- 0.04% ER
Fidelity Total International Index Fund Premium Class (FTIPX) -- 0.11% ER
Fidelity U. S. Bond Index Fund Premium Class (FSITX) -- 0.05% ER

Compared to:

Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund Admiral Shares (VTSAX) -- 0.05% ER
Vanguard Total International Stock Index Fund Admiral Shares (VTIAX) -- 0.12% ER
Vanguard Total Bond Market Index Fund Admiral Shares (VBTLX) -- 0.06% ER

Yea FID's are 0.01% cheaper but there roughly half VG on Net assets so it's a toss. -- look at the yield difference, VG is better.


Acually FTIPX has about 99.95% less assets than VTIAX, and its performance appears to be lagging badly for an index fund.


Didn't someone point out they tracked different indices?
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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity

Post by brad.clarkston » Wed Jan 18, 2017 12:52 pm

TheTimeLord wrote:
*3!4!/5! wrote:
brad.clarkston wrote:I substitute FID's Premium Class funds for VG Admiral Class without any problems

Fidelity Total Market Index Fund Premium Class (FSTVX) -- 0.04% ER
Fidelity Total International Index Fund Premium Class (FTIPX) -- 0.11% ER
Fidelity U. S. Bond Index Fund Premium Class (FSITX) -- 0.05% ER

Compared to:

Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund Admiral Shares (VTSAX) -- 0.05% ER
Vanguard Total International Stock Index Fund Admiral Shares (VTIAX) -- 0.12% ER
Vanguard Total Bond Market Index Fund Admiral Shares (VBTLX) -- 0.06% ER

Yea FID's are 0.01% cheaper but there roughly half VG on Net assets so it's a toss. -- look at the yield difference, VG is better.


Acually FTIPX has about 99.95% less assets than VTIAX, and its performance appears to be lagging badly for an index fund.


Didn't someone point out they tracked different indices?


Yes the Dow Jones but for purposes of using a no load fee, low ER fund at Fidelity those are the closest. It doesn't make a loot of sense to spend $7.95 per trade to buy the VG indexes when these are a close enough match to just be "noise".

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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by mcraepat9 » Wed Jan 18, 2017 12:57 pm

FTIPX has been open for what, 6 months? Seems a bit too soon to get worked up over this.
Amateur investors are not cool-headed logicians.

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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by *3!4!/5! » Wed Jan 18, 2017 6:07 pm

mcraepat9 wrote:FTIPX has been open for what, 6 months? Seems a bit too soon to get worked up over this.

This seems to have it exactly backwards.

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TheTimeLord
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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by TheTimeLord » Wed Jan 18, 2017 6:11 pm

mcraepat9 wrote:FTIPX has been open for what, 6 months? Seems a bit too soon to get worked up over this.

+1

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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by brad.clarkston » Wed Jan 18, 2017 6:27 pm

*3!4!/5! wrote:
mcraepat9 wrote:FTIPX has been open for what, 6 months? Seems a bit too soon to get worked up over this.

This seems to have it exactly backwards.


Lol,yes to both directions ;)

It's nice that there are now "somewhat" VG equivalents to use NTF at Fidelity but yes they are pretty shiny new.

Not quite as good as the VG versions but competitive in value and price. What's the William Pollard saying? "Without change there is no innovation, creativity, or incentive for improvement. I suspect once VG recovers from the throws of success they will innovate again.

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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by TheTimeLord » Wed Jan 18, 2017 6:42 pm

brad.clarkston wrote:
*3!4!/5! wrote:
mcraepat9 wrote:FTIPX has been open for what, 6 months? Seems a bit too soon to get worked up over this.

This seems to have it exactly backwards.


Lol,yes to both directions ;)

It's nice that there are now "somewhat" VG equivalents to use NTF at Fidelity but yes they are pretty shiny new.

Not quite as good as the VG versions but competitive in value and price. What's the William Pollard saying? "Without change there is no innovation, creativity, or incentive for improvement. I suspect once VG recovers from the throws of success they will innovate again.


As a Fidelity customer I would purchase the commission free ETF IXUS for this purpose. But I keep my developed and emerging market investments separate so I really have no use for either.
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toto238
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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by toto238 » Wed Jan 18, 2017 7:18 pm

my $0.02

Pros at Fidelity:
If you have a lot of customer service needs, you will almost certainly get better service. You don't wait on hold as long, they're more likely to do things correct the first time.

Expenses on their index products and other ETFs available through them are on par or even cheaper than Vanguard products right now.

Cons at Fidelity:
Fidelity's structure is such that they prefer to push clients into high-expense active funds. If you're an experienced Boglehead, it's not particularly difficult to avoid these. However I think of my parents, kids, siblings, etc who aren't as financially inclined. If I encourage any of them to open an account at Fidelity, I would not be surprised if they fell victim to an expensive asset management service with high-expense funds.

That high service you receive from Fidelity doesn't come from nowhere, someone is paying for it. And if you are investing only in low-expense ETFs and Vanguard products, you are likely costing Fidelity much more in customer service than you are paying in any kind of fees to them. Your higher level of service is being paid for by other customers who fall for those high-fee traps and are paying through the nose. Is it sustainable long-term that Fidelity would do nothing about some of its clients being a net cost to them? Fidelity is a private company owned by the Johnson family and those owners want to see a profit. Could they target the clients who are costing them money at some point in the future? Maybe.

While Fidelity funds have lowered their expense ratios to be competitive with Vanguard, this is almost certainly a loss leader for them. It is very unlikely they are making much if any profit on these funds. They also are much less likely to share their security lending revenue with their shareholders, and this can easily be worth between 5-25bps. I worry about buying a bunch of a fund in a taxable account, building up huge capital gains, and then the fund expenses increase significantly. Then I'm stuck in a high-expense fund that I can't sell without massive tax consequences. This could happen at any fund family, but I feel that Fidelity's corporate structure incentivizes it.

Pros at Vanguard:
If your customer service needs are minimal, their service as perfectly adequate. If you're the kind of investor that invests in 4 funds or less, Dollar-cost-average in, and just invest in simple accounts (Individual, Joint, Trad IRA, Roth IRA), and prefer to do everything on the web anyway, you'll almost certainly be perfectly satisfied.

Expenses on Vanguard products are nearly always either the lowest or very close to the lowest in the industry. They also share more than 90% of their security lending revenue with their shareholders, which at 5-25bps can make a much bigger difference than a 1-2bp difference in expense ratio.

At Vanguard, I know that I can help my friends, family, etc open accounts and know that they will never be taken advantage of. They will never be put into high-expense ratio funds, or be enrolled in a high-cost advisory service. The only advisory service Vanguard offers is at a cost of 30bps and honestly is probably a pretty great value for anyone who doesn't have the time, ability or willingness to manage their own assets (A large majority of Americans). I can rest easy knowing that if I pass Vanguard won't tell my heirs to sell all my index funds and put everything into this fancy new actively managed fund that will make all their dreams come true.

Vanguard's corporate structure is set so that expenses should be pushed lower over time. Vanguard's stated mission includes lowering costs for all investors (and in fact is a very large reason behind why companies like Fidelity even offer low-expense funds). It is very unlikely that the expenses in my Vanguard funds will jump up significantly, or that Vanguard would ever decide to move away from index funds as a corporate strategy. I can invest in Vanguard funds in a taxable account with the comfort of knowing I won't get stuck in a high-expense fund at some point down the road.

Cons at Vanguard:
If you have a lot of customer service needs, Vanguard is not currently great at that. The hold to talk to a rep is usually pretty long, and it would seem many (if not a majority) have pretty low tenure. If you have complex account types (SEPs, SIMPLEs, solo 401ks, 403b7s, trust accounts, organization accounts), their web interface can be frustrating. If you are looking to trade a lot of stocks/ETFs/etc you will find Vanguard's brokerage platform to be somewhat Spartan. If you like to have physical offices to walk into, you won't have that with Vanguard.



In the end, it depends on what type of investor you are. Many, if not most, Bogleheads like to keep things as simple as possible and for them Vanguard is more than sufficient to meet their needs. Others have very complex needs and hate to use the web, so would much rather take their paperwork to a physical office and have someone help them fill out every page while sitting next to them.

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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by brad.clarkston » Wed Jan 18, 2017 8:18 pm

TheTimeLord wrote:
brad.clarkston wrote:
*3!4!/5! wrote:
mcraepat9 wrote:FTIPX has been open for what, 6 months? Seems a bit too soon to get worked up over this.

This seems to have it exactly backwards.


Lol,yes to both directions ;)

It's nice that there are now "somewhat" VG equivalents to use NTF at Fidelity but yes they are pretty shiny new.

Not quite as good as the VG versions but competitive in value and price. What's the William Pollard saying? "Without change there is no innovation, creativity, or incentive for improvement. I suspect once VG recovers from the throws of success they will innovate again.


As a Fidelity customer I would purchase the commission free ETF IXUS for this purpose. But I keep my developed and emerging market investments separate so I really have no use for either.


That's a very good point, Fidelity doesn't have a "good" International SCV *anything* but then nether does VG in my opinion (IXUS/VXUS). I'm still looking for something better in those factors (SCV DE/EM) that does not require a $500k advisor buy-in.

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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by brad.clarkston » Wed Jan 18, 2017 8:35 pm

toto238 wrote:
Cons at Fidelity:
Fidelity's structure is such that they prefer to push clients into high-expense active funds. If you're an experienced Boglehead, it's not particularly difficult to avoid these.


What is your definition of "high-expense active funds" ?? Vanguard also has a fairly large slew of active funds they push.

I do find it humorous when new forum users list only a handful of there 401k funds becouse the others are not .05-.7% ER!

The "Tao of Boglehead" is a great thing (saved my bacon!) but that's a very small set of rigid MF's that comprise the 3-fund & Lazy Port's. And the MF's they can likely start using has ER's in the high teens-low twenty's so they have to punt into ETF's which is just as small a list.

There are some pretty good funds in the .15-.30'ish% ER that can substitute or provide tilt in even a BH's portfolio wither it's Vanguard, Fidelity, or Schwab. Sticking to one rigid mantra isn't always the best idea in all situations, just most.

.

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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by Angelus359 » Thu Jan 19, 2017 9:56 am

brad.clarkston wrote:
toto238 wrote:
Cons at Fidelity:
Fidelity's structure is such that they prefer to push clients into high-expense active funds. If you're an experienced Boglehead, it's not particularly difficult to avoid these.


What is your definition of "high-expense active funds" ?? Vanguard also has a fairly large slew of active funds they push.

I do find it humorous when new forum users list only a handful of there 401k funds becouse the others are not .05-.7% ER!

The "Tao of Boglehead" is a great thing (saved my bacon!) but that's a very small set of rigid MF's that comprise the 3-fund & Lazy Port's. And the MF's they can likely start using has ER's in the high teens-low twenty's so they have to punt into ETF's which is just as small a list.

There are some pretty good funds in the .15-.30'ish% ER that can substitute or provide tilt in even a BH's portfolio wither it's Vanguard, Fidelity, or Schwab. Sticking to one rigid mantra isn't always the best idea in all situations, just most.

.


Vanguard doesn't have high cost funds.

Their active stuff is still cheap.
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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by brad.clarkston » Thu Jan 19, 2017 11:09 am

Angelus359 wrote:
brad.clarkston wrote:
toto238 wrote:
Cons at Fidelity:
Fidelity's structure is such that they prefer to push clients into high-expense active funds. If you're an experienced Boglehead, it's not particularly difficult to avoid these.


What is your definition of "high-expense active funds" ?? Vanguard also has a fairly large slew of active funds they push.

I do find it humorous when new forum users list only a handful of there 401k funds becouse the others are not .05-.7% ER!

The "Tao of Boglehead" is a great thing (saved my bacon!) but that's a very small set of rigid MF's that comprise the 3-fund & Lazy Port's. And the MF's they can likely start using has ER's in the high teens-low twenty's so they have to punt into ETF's which is just as small a list.

There are some pretty good funds in the .15-.30'ish% ER that can substitute or provide tilt in even a BH's portfolio wither it's Vanguard, Fidelity, or Schwab. Sticking to one rigid mantra isn't always the best idea in all situations, just most.

.


Vanguard doesn't have high cost funds.

Their active stuff is still cheap.



Cool so that's a round-about-answer of your OK with pretty much anything at .9 and under ;)

Vanguard Small Cap Growth Index Inv (VISGX) -- ER .20%
Vanguard Small Cap Index Inv (NAESX) -- ER .20%
Vanguard Small Cap Value Index Inv (VISVX) -- ER .20%
Vanguard Equity-Income Inv (VEIPX) -- ER .26%
Vanguard European Stock Index Inv (VEURX) -- ER 0.26%
Vanguard Emerging Mkts Stock Idx Inv (VEIEX) -- ER 0.37%
Vanguard Explorer Inv (VEXPX) -- ER 0.45%
Vanguard Explorer Value Inv (VEVFX)-- ER 0.57%
Vanguard Emerging Markets Bond Investor (VEMBX) -- 0.60%
Vanguard Emerg Mkts Sel Stk Inv (VMMSX) -- ER 0.90%

That's a small sample I didn't go through all of there funds. Personally I start to get antsy around .5 it's got to be a darn special fund.

.

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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by mcraepat9 » Thu Jan 19, 2017 11:16 am

*3!4!/5! wrote:
mcraepat9 wrote:FTIPX has been open for what, 6 months? Seems a bit too soon to get worked up over this.

This seems to have it exactly backwards.


Please explain.
Amateur investors are not cool-headed logicians.

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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by toto238 » Thu Jan 19, 2017 6:28 pm

brad.clarkston wrote:
Angelus359 wrote:
brad.clarkston wrote:
toto238 wrote:
Cons at Fidelity:
Fidelity's structure is such that they prefer to push clients into high-expense active funds. If you're an experienced Boglehead, it's not particularly difficult to avoid these.


What is your definition of "high-expense active funds" ?? Vanguard also has a fairly large slew of active funds they push.

I do find it humorous when new forum users list only a handful of there 401k funds becouse the others are not .05-.7% ER!

The "Tao of Boglehead" is a great thing (saved my bacon!) but that's a very small set of rigid MF's that comprise the 3-fund & Lazy Port's. And the MF's they can likely start using has ER's in the high teens-low twenty's so they have to punt into ETF's which is just as small a list.

There are some pretty good funds in the .15-.30'ish% ER that can substitute or provide tilt in even a BH's portfolio wither it's Vanguard, Fidelity, or Schwab. Sticking to one rigid mantra isn't always the best idea in all situations, just most.

.


Vanguard doesn't have high cost funds.

Their active stuff is still cheap.



Cool so that's a round-about-answer of your OK with pretty much anything at .9 and under ;)

Vanguard Small Cap Growth Index Inv (VISGX) -- ER .20%
Vanguard Small Cap Index Inv (NAESX) -- ER .20%
Vanguard Small Cap Value Index Inv (VISVX) -- ER .20%
Vanguard Equity-Income Inv (VEIPX) -- ER .26%
Vanguard European Stock Index Inv (VEURX) -- ER 0.26%
Vanguard Emerging Mkts Stock Idx Inv (VEIEX) -- ER 0.37%
Vanguard Explorer Inv (VEXPX) -- ER 0.45%
Vanguard Explorer Value Inv (VEVFX)-- ER 0.57%
Vanguard Emerging Markets Bond Investor (VEMBX) -- 0.60%
Vanguard Emerg Mkts Sel Stk Inv (VMMSX) -- ER 0.90%

That's a small sample I didn't go through all of there funds. Personally I start to get antsy around .5 it's got to be a darn special fund.

.


Look at what these funds are investing in:

VISGX (small caps) - ER .20% - Category average 1.32%
NAESX (small caps) - ER .20% - Category average 1.21%
I'm gonna skip by the rest of the index funds because it's the same story with all of them. Look at the actives you listed:
Equity-Income (large-cap value) - ER 0.26% - Category average 1.07%
Explorer Fund (small caps) - ER .49% - Category Average 1.32%
Explorer Value (small caps) - ER .63% - Category Average 1.31%
Emerging Markets Select Stock (international, small markets) - ER 0.93% - Category Average 1.49%


For their categories, every single one of the funds you mentioned is significantly cheaper than the average for their category. Not by a little. By a LOT.

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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by toto238 » Thu Jan 19, 2017 6:33 pm

Bottom line, it's more expensive to manage small-cap funds than large-cap. It's more expensive to manage bonds than stocks. And it's more expensive to manage international than domestic.

So you went and picked out a bunch of small cap funds, international funds, and even an international bond fund and tried to use that as an example to prove VG has high cost funds. But you're comparing apples to oranges.

It's like I said "Lamborghinis are fast" and you said "not when they're towing a 10-ton truck."

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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by Punta Cana DR » Thu Jan 19, 2017 7:41 pm

I moved all holding to Fidelity and very happy. The website and service is great - 24 hours. I transferred all my VG assets in kind with no problem.

In addition, Fidelity has many commission free ETF's from Blackrock. ITOT is only .03% ER (a Russell 1500 index). Vanguard was great, but I prefer the Fidelity website tools and interface. However, I think VG made Fidelity improve to match market competition.

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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by brad.clarkston » Thu Jan 19, 2017 10:03 pm

toto238 wrote:Bottom line, it's more expensive to manage small-cap funds than large-cap. It's more expensive to manage bonds than stocks. And it's more expensive to manage international than domestic.

So you went and picked out a bunch of small cap funds, international funds, and even an international bond fund and tried to use that as an example to prove VG has high cost funds. But you're comparing apples to oranges.

It's like I said "Lamborghinis are fast" and you said "not when they're towing a 10-ton truck."


That's a strawman, your trying to prove a point that had nothing to do with my post.
I'm not sure you even read the discussion.


[quote="Angelus359]
Vanguard doesn't have high cost funds.
Their active stuff is still cheap.

[/quote]

I cut and pasted from morningstars list of VG's high fund SC and/or International page to show that they like any other broker have funds above .0x actually quite a few more than I listed from .2-.9 I just didn't take the time to bother with it.

I find it's better to take the 'Church of Vanguard' out of the equation and just treat them like any other investing product - one of many it broadens your choices immensely.

.

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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by ruralavalon » Thu Jan 19, 2017 11:15 pm

brad.clarkston wrote:
toto238 wrote:Bottom line, it's more expensive to manage small-cap funds than large-cap. It's more expensive to manage bonds than stocks. And it's more expensive to manage international than domestic.

So you went and picked out a bunch of small cap funds, international funds, and even an international bond fund and tried to use that as an example to prove VG has high cost funds. But you're comparing apples to oranges.

It's like I said "Lamborghinis are fast" and you said "not when they're towing a 10-ton truck."


That's a strawman, your trying to prove a point that had nothing to do with my post.
I'm not sure you even read the discussion.


[quote="Angelus359]
Vanguard doesn't have high cost funds.
Their active stuff is still cheap.

[/quote]

I cut and pasted from morningstars list of VG's high fund SC and/or International page to show that they like any other broker have funds above .0x actually quite a few more than I listed from .2-.9 I just didn't take the time to bother with it.

I find it's better to take the 'Church of Vanguard' out of the equation and just treat them like any other investing product - one of many it broadens your choices immensely.

.[/quote]


Did you think that the 10 funds that you gave as examples have high expense ratios?
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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by brad.clarkston » Thu Jan 19, 2017 11:52 pm

ruralavalon wrote:
brad.clarkston wrote:
toto238 wrote:Bottom line, it's more expensive to manage small-cap funds than large-cap. It's more expensive to manage bonds than stocks. And it's more expensive to manage international than domestic.

So you went and picked out a bunch of small cap funds, international funds, and even an international bond fund and tried to use that as an example to prove VG has high cost funds. But you're comparing apples to oranges.

It's like I said "Lamborghinis are fast" and you said "not when they're towing a 10-ton truck."


That's a strawman, your trying to prove a point that had nothing to do with my post.
I'm not sure you even read the discussion.


[quote="Angelus359]
Vanguard doesn't have high cost funds.
Their active stuff is still cheap.

[/quote]

I cut and pasted from morningstars list of VG's high fund SC and/or International page to show that they like any other broker have funds above .0x actually quite a few more than I listed from .2-.9 I just didn't take the time to bother with it.

I find it's better to take the 'Church of Vanguard' out of the equation and just treat them like any other investing product - one of many it broadens your choices immensely.[/quote]


Did you think that the 10 funds that you gave as examples have high expense ratios?[/quote][/quote][/quote][/quote][/quote][/quote][/quote]


It depends on the context which was my point I just didn't articulate it well.

For a limited 401k I don't think a .2 or .3 is to bad if there isn't a good target date fund available. All of the US Small-Cap Value funds would be a good addition if a 401k only has the VG S&P 500 fund - allot of smaller company plans have it instead of the 3-port funds we normally use and I'm a advocate of a SC-V tilt.

I'm researching SC-V non-US so it's on my mind allot none of the ones I listed are anywhere close to "good" in my opinion.

.

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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by PStrider » Fri Jan 20, 2017 1:17 am

If I don't have a specific product I want from Vanguard (wellington and wellesley funds come to mind), I would pick Fidelity every time.

So far it's been quite an ordeal and very time consuming to set up my mom's retirement account and becoming her custodian with V.

I've called both V and F asking for retirement and portfolio advice several times, and Fidelity won easily, and it's not even close.

Cheers.

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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by GreenGrowTheDollars » Fri Jan 20, 2017 9:26 am

Been a Fidelity customer for many years; used to be a Vanguard customer.

Fidelity's customer service experience is at or better than the level of Amex's. They answer the phone, the reps are wonderfully trained, they listen, and if you need to be transferred to a new group, the original rep stays on the line to make sure that the transfer is good. When we needed to move MIL's trust assets from Putnam (yuck) Fidelity was a dream to work with, and being able to go into an office made it that much easier. We trade stocks, buy index funds/ETF's, and have IRA's, Roth's, solo 401K, and several taxable accounts with Fidelity. I've never felt that they pushed funds on us, though back when we first opened IRA's we certainly invested in their well-known Peter Lynch managed fund. (That was back when we used Money Magazine as guidance for what funds to buy. We were young. :D )

Vanguard's funds we were invested in at the same time were all managed funds. Even back then, Vanguard's customer service was not as sharp. Eventually, we decided on simplicity and elected to consolidate where the service was better.

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Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by toto238 » Fri Jan 20, 2017 9:55 am

brad.clarkston wrote:
ruralavalon wrote:
brad.clarkston wrote:
toto238 wrote:Bottom line, it's more expensive to manage small-cap funds than large-cap. It's more expensive to manage bonds than stocks. And it's more expensive to manage international than domestic.

So you went and picked out a bunch of small cap funds, international funds, and even an international bond fund and tried to use that as an example to prove VG has high cost funds. But you're comparing apples to oranges.

It's like I said "Lamborghinis are fast" and you said "not when they're towing a 10-ton truck."


That's a strawman, your trying to prove a point that had nothing to do with my post.
I'm not sure you even read the discussion.


[quote="Angelus359]
Vanguard doesn't have high cost funds.
Their active stuff is still cheap.

[/quote]

I cut and pasted from morningstars list of VG's high fund SC and/or International page to show that they like any other broker have funds above .0x actually quite a few more than I listed from .2-.9 I just didn't take the time to bother with it.

I find it's better to take the 'Church of Vanguard' out of the equation and just treat them like any other investing product - one of many it broadens your choices immensely.[/quote]


Did you think that the 10 funds that you gave as examples have high expense ratios?[/quote][/quote][/quote][/quote][/quote][/quote][/quote][/quote][/quote]

It depends on the context which was my point I just didn't articulate it well.

For a limited 401k I don't think a .2 or .3 is to bad if there isn't a good target date fund available. All of the US Small-Cap Value funds would be a good addition if a 401k only has the VG S&P 500 fund - allot of smaller company plans have it instead of the 3-port funds we normally use and I'm a advocate of a SC-V tilt.

I'm researching SC-V non-US so it's on my mind allot none of the ones I listed are anywhere close to "good" in my opinion.

.[/quote]


You looked for the absolute most expensive VG funds, and then tried to compare them to the cheapest funds at another institution. Yeah that's definitely a fair comparison.

A huge difference is what the employees of each company will actually push you towards. At VG, if you ask reps for guidance, they won't push you towards those funds you mentioned. They direct you to Total Stock-Total Bond-Total International-etc.

At Fidelity, if you ask for guidance on funds to pick, they aren't going to default to their Spartan funds. You basically have to ask about their Spartan funds for them to mention it. They also encourage clients to use a bunch of fancy-looking stock-tracking tools to encourage them to trade as much as possible, churning their own accounts and racking up trading fees.

That might not be super important to a Boglehead that knows what they're doing. But will my heirs be so well informed? Would I feel comfortable telling my family and friends to open accounts with this institution knowing full well they could end up in high-fee active funds, or racking up huge trading fees from churning their own accounts?

For me personally, I will suffer through a bit of inconvenience in the rare instances that I actually need customer service (once or twice per decade usually) for the peace of mind of knowing my friends, family and heirs will not be taken advantage of.

slowbutsteady
Posts: 66
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2015 9:42 am

Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by slowbutsteady » Fri Jan 20, 2017 10:03 am

PStrider wrote:I've called both V and F asking for retirement and portfolio advice several times, and Fidelity won easily, and it's not even close.

Cheers.


Same consistent experience. I will rate Fidelity a 9/10 and Vanguard a 2/10. Fidelity customers service folks are knowledgeable, polished, and just so on top of it. Vanguard's are just the opposite (but for a surprising luck with surprisinglu syperb Vanguard agent who help with a 401k issue last year).

A recent back to back transaction of shifting funds from investor to premium class with a few intermediate trades to make this happen was smooth with the Fidelity rep and a nightmare with Vanguard's. Rep did not even know you can trade immediately with funds from an ETFs sale...took some convincing. Better hiring? Better training?

Love Vanguard's fund selections and the website is very fine by me. But the customers service...night vs day relative to Fidelity's.
The tortoise wins every time I read that story.

Chicago60
Posts: 262
Joined: Tue Jan 29, 2013 3:40 pm

Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity [Customer Service Reputation]

Post by Chicago60 » Fri Jan 20, 2017 11:20 am

slowbutsteady wrote:
Love Vanguard's fund selections and the website is very fine by me. But the customers service...night vs day relative to Fidelity's.


I agree completely. I have had an account at Fidelity for 10 years. Never a problem or issue. I opened a Roth401K last summer at Vanguard for my individual 401K. (Fidelity did not have a Roth option). Slow to open, but not too difficult. Then, just before Christmas, I decided to open the regular 401K and have my sole proprietorship fund the employer portion. My stated objective was to fund before year-end. The rep did not tell me opening the account would almost certainly not happen in a week (In numerous subsequent conversations I was told 21 days is Vanguard policy), and it has taken no less than 5 phone calls to get the account finally opened. Today. It took 4 weeks to open a simple 401K account. But, now that the account is finally open, I am hopeful I will not have issues with Vanguard, or need customer service.

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