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Compare the UK’s cheapest online brokers

The best and cheapest online stock brokers and trading platforms available to UK investors. Please find our guide to choosing the best platform for you below the tables.

Flat fee investment platforms / stock brokers

Platform Annual platform fee Fee notes Dealing: Funds Dealing: ETFs, ITs, & shares Regular investing Entry fee Exit fee1 Good for
Halifax / Bank Of Scotland Share Dealing One £36 fee covers ISA and trading account. Applies from April 1 £9.50 £9.50 £2
Shares ISA £36
Trading £36
SIPP £90 if SIPP worth less than £50K. £180 if SIPP more than £50K + £180 p.a. Drawdown, £90 per UFPLS payment £60 per transfer. Max £300 Unrestricted fund portfolios above £102K2
iWeb £100 one-off account opening charge £5 £5 Large portfolios and infrequent traders, check vs ii, Lloyds and Halifax
Shares ISA
Trading The cheapest if you rarely trade
SIPP £90 if SIPP worth less than £50K. £180 if SIPP more than £50K + £180 p.a. drawdown, £90 per UFPLS payment £60 per transfer. Max £300 Unrestricted fund portfolios above £102K3
Lloyds Bank Share Dealing £40 One £40 fee covers ISA and trading account £1.50 £11* £1.50
Shares ISA Unrestricted fund portfolios over £26K4, unrestricted mixed ETF/fund portfolios5
Trading Unrestricted fund portfolios over £26K6, unrestricted mixed ETF/fund portfolios7
SIPP n/a
Interactive Investor8 £119.88 Investor Plan9 1 free trade per month10 £7.9911 £7.9912 Free Drawdown
Shares ISA
SIPP + £120 £0 drawdown, £0 UFPLS SIPP fee waived for first 6 months
ShareDeal Active £9.50 £9.50 £12 per holding + £60 account transfer/closure
Flexible Shares ISA £60 £18 cash withdrawal
Trading As above
SIPP £118.80 + £180 p.a. drawdown, £120 per UFPLS payment  First year’s fee refunded
HSBC Invest Direct £42 Charge per account. No funds n/a £10.50*13 £15 per holding
Shares ISA
SIPP n/a

Note: Charges may actually be due per month, quarter, six monthly or annually. We’ve chosen to show annual cost of service. All prices include VAT. *A frequent trader rate or bonus is also available. Other charges may be applicable that aren’t included in the table. N.B. Accounts held with Halifax / Bank Of Scotland, Lloyds Bank, and iWeb count as one for the purposes of the FSCS compensation scheme. Like other price comparison websites, we may be paid a bonus if you sign-up via a link. This does not affect what you pay.

Percentage fee investment platforms / stock brokers

Platform Annual platform fee Fee notes Dealing:
Dealing: ETFs, ITs, & shares Regular investing Entry fee Exit fee14 Good for
Vanguard Investor 0.15% on first £250,000, 0% thereafter. Tiered charge. Max £375 Investments restricted to Vanguard funds and ETFs £0 £0 for fixed daily times, £7.50 to trade at other times £0 Beats other % fee brokers in most cases, and flat-fee brokers up to values below, but restricted range
Flexible Shares ISA Fund portfolios up to £43K, mixed ETF/fund up to £55K, ETF portfolios up to £47K
Trading Fund portfolios up to £43K, mixed ETF/fund up to £55K, ETF portfolios up to £47K
SIPP £0 drawdown. Vanguard investments can be transferred in specie15 Fund portfolios up to £169K, mixed ETF/fund, ETF portfolios up to £66K
AJ Bell Youinvest 0.25% on first £250,000 of funds16 Tiered charge e.g. 0.25% on first £250K then 0.1% on next £750K etc £1.50 £9.95* £1.50 £9.95 per holding
Shares ISA + 0.25% charge (max £42) on ETFs, ITs, shares, and bonds
Trading As above
SIPP + 0.25% charge (max £120) on ETFs, ITs, shares, and bonds £0 drawdown Unrestricted ETF and unrestricted mixed ETF/fund portfolios
HSBC Global Investment Centre 0.25% on all investments Trackers restricted to HSBC index funds £0 Small fund portfolios, restricted range
Shares ISA
SIPP n/a
Close Brothers 0.25% on first £500,000 0.2% £500,001 – £1 million, 0.1% £1 million – £1.5 million, 0% over £1.5 million. Tiered £0 £8.95 Small fund portfolios, restricted range
Shares ISA
SIPP £0 drawdown, £60 per UFPLS payment
Fidelity 0.35% on all assets worth £7500 – £249,99917 Assets under £7500 = £45 p.a. or 0.35% with monthly savings plan18 £0 £10 £1.50 (Not charged on funds)
Shares ISA ETF and IT fees capped at £45
Trading ETF and IT fees waived
SIPP ETF and IT fees capped at £45 £0 drawdown Restricted ETF portfolios over £66K
Charles Stanley Direct 0.35% on first £250,000 of funds19 0.35% on shares, ETFs and ITs. Min £24 / Max £24020 £0 £11.50 £10 per holding
Flexible Shares ISA
SIPP + £120 No £120 fee if £30,000+ across all accounts. + £60 p.a. drawdown, £180 per UFPLS payment + £150
EQi 0.3% on first £50K of funds. 0.25% £50K – £250K. 0.15% over £250K. £1,000 max. Tiered + £12.50 (+ £4.99 per account) minus online dealing fees/fund platform fees per quarter. Min £0 / Max £89.92 p.a. £0 buy, £10.99* sell £9.99* ETFs,£10.99* shares, ITs £1.50 £15 per holding ETF portfolios with unrestricted range
Flexible Shares ISA LISA only: 0.2%. Max £40 p.a. Free with other accounts21 Unrestricted ETF portfolios22
Trading £4.99 quarterly account charge waived if you own ISA / SIPP Unrestricted ETF portfolios23
SIPP + £118.80 + £180 p.a. drawdown + £90
Strawberry Invest 0.3% on first £50,000 0.2% £50,001 – £1 million, 0% over 1 million. Includes cash. Min £24. £0 0.04%. Min £7.50 £1 per holding
Shares ISA
SIPP n/a
Bestinvest Platform fee applies to all investments Tiered charge e.g. 0.4% on first £250K, 0.2% on next £750K etc £0 £7.50
Shares ISA 0.4% on first £250,00024 0.2% £250,001 – £1 million, 0% over £1 million
Trading As above As above
SIPP £120 p.a. + 0.3% on first £250,00025 + £120 p.a. drawdown if SIPP worth less than £100K+ after tax free cash.
Hargreaves Lansdown 0.45% on first £250,000 of funds26 Tiered charge. You pay 0.45% on first £250K then 0.25% on next £750K etc £0 £11.95* £1.50 (Not charged on funds)
Shares ISA + 0.45% charge (max £45) on ETFs, ITs, shares, and bonds LISA: same charges
SIPP + 0.45% (max £200) on ETFs, ITs, shares, and bonds £0 drawdown
Aviva 0.4% on first £50,000 of funds27 Tiered charge. You pay 0.4% on first £50K then 0.35% on next £200K etc £0
Flexible Shares ISA
Barclays Smart Investor 0.2% on funds (£48 min, £1500 max) 0.1% on ETFs, ITs, shares, bonds (£48 min, £1500 max) £3 £6* £1
Shares ISA
SIPP + £150 + £120 p.a. drawdown, £90 per UFPLS payment £90 per transfer capped at £450 + £90

Note: Charges may actually be due per month, quarter, six monthly or annually. We’ve chosen to show annual cost of service. All prices include VAT. *A frequent trader rate or bonus is also available. Other charges may be applicable that aren’t included in the table. Like other price comparison websites, we may be paid a bonus if you sign-up via a link. This does not affect what you pay.

Share dealing platforms / stock brokers

Platform Annual platform fee Fee notes Dealing:
Dealing: ETFs, ITs, & shares Regular investing Entry fee Exit fee28 Good for
Degiro £0 Degiro may lend out your shares. A custody account avoids this but charges €1 + 3% (max 10%) for dividend payouts29 n/a Some commission-free ETFs.30 €2 + 0.03% for other ETFs. £1.75 + 0.014% for LSE shares31 €10 per holding €10 per holding Commission-free ETF range, frequent traders
Shares ISA n/a
SIPP n/a
Freetrade Smartphone app only. Restricted list of ETFs n/a £0 to trade during normal market hours Commission-free ETF range, frequent traders
Shares ISA £36
SIPP £119.88 No drawdown facility yet
X-O.co.uk No funds n/a £5.95 £18 per holding
Shares ISA + £60 account closure
SIPP £118.80 + £180 p.a. drawdown, £120 per UFPLS payment + £60 First year’s fee refunded
IG Funds in SIPP only. Only one fee for ISA and trading account £0 £8*
Flexible Shares ISA £96 £24 waived quarterly by 3+ trades a month in trading account32
Trading £96 As above
SIPP Closed to new business
Interactive Brokers $10 inactivity fee per month. Reduced by value of dealing fees33 $20 inactivity fee per month if equity balance below $2,00034 n/a £6*35 International shares / ETFs
Shares ISA n/a
SIPP Fees vary
Trading 212 £0 Restricted list of ETFs n/a £0 Commission-free ETF range, frequent traders
Shares ISA
SIPP n/a

Note: Commission-free brokers generally make money from spreads, foreign exchange fees and cross-selling of other services. Charges may actually be due per month, quarter, six monthly or annually. We’ve chosen to show annual cost of service. All prices include VAT. Other charges may be applicable that aren’t included in the table. Like other price comparison websites, we may be paid a bonus if you sign-up via a link. This does not affect what you pay.

Our tables enable you to compare the best and cheapest online stock brokers and trading platforms available to UK investors. These services enable you to trade and manage your portfolio of shares, funds, ETFs, and other investments online.

Note: the terms platform, stock broker, and broker are all interchangeable.

There is no single best investment platform for everybody. The stock broker market is competitive so players try to standout by offering different pricing models and market niches.

Price is critical because keeping your costs low is a crucial factor governing your long-term investment performance.

Therefore our trading platform table focuses heavily on the fees you’ll pay for the key investing services.

The best platform for you is likely to provide:

  • The best price for the services you use most.
  • The shares, funds, ETFs and other investments you want. Platforms do not all carry the same range of products.
  • The right level of customer service for your needs – Don’t expect the lowest cost platform to respond like lightning when you want them to handle complicated arrangements over the phone.
  • The right user experience – If you want a flashy website and app then you’ll be able to tell who provides that from their home page. A broker with a clunky website and dirt-cheap fees is unlikely to prioritise investing in cutting-edge tech.

Beginner investors – If you’re starting out with a relatively low level of knowledge and small monthly amounts to invest, then focus on the percentage-fee platforms table.

Anyone whose assets are likely to remain below £25,000 (ISA) or £100,000 (SIPP) for some time to come will typically be better off with a percentage-fee platform that charges £0 for fund dealing.

Flat fees take a disproportionate chunk out of small investors’ assets. That’s why Vanguard Investor tops the table for small investors.

Investors with larger portfolios – Look first at the flat-fee platform table if you’ve accumulated over £25,000 (ISA) or £100,000 (SIPP).

Percentage fees can siphon off eye-watering amounts from your wealth if your platform doesn’t cap them.

There are a few exceptions though if you stick to ETFs in a SIPP.

If frequent trading and exotic investments are your thing then you’ll likely find your perfect match in the share dealing platform table. At Monevator, we believe that most people will thrive with a passive investing strategy.

Not everyone agrees though, and some sophisticated or high net-worth investors may like to take their chances in the riskier reaches of the market.

The Good for column shows some of the best deals available when judged by price, account type and portfolio mix.36 We judge this from a passive investor’s perspective.

More guidance:

This table is edited by fallible human beings. Do your own research. We fix mistakes as soon as possible but we cannot be held liable or accountable for any errors. Please add updates or erratas in the comments below.

Like other price comparison websites, we may be paid a bonus if you sign-up via a link. This does not affect what you pay.

Check your trading platform is authorised by the FCA

If your broker is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) then you may be entitled to compensation using the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). Check from here by using the FCA register.

Some trading platforms are owned by the same financial group. You do not diversify your risk by splitting assets across brands owned by the same group. Our investor compensation scheme guide (linked to above) explains how you can identify these brands.

Where is my missing trading platform?

We haven’t included every last option in our table but we have included the most competitive players in the market. Do let us know if you think we’ve missed anyone important.

Trading platform costs and fees

The platform charge category is intended to capture the various types of service fee typically levied by investment platforms e.g. custody fee, platform charge, administration fee, inactivity fee and so on until the end of time / your tether.

Assume platform charges are levied per account unless otherwise indicated in the notes column or the footnotes.

A tiered charge means you’ll pay different amounts depending on the total value of your account(s). For example:

  • 0.25% on £0 – £250,000 (tier 1)
  • 0.1% on £250,001 – £500,000 (tier 2)

If your account was worth £250,500 then you’d only benefit from the lower charge on the £499 that fell into tier 2. £250,000 would still be charged the tier 1 rate of 0.25%.

Beware some brokers count joint and individual accounts separately when working out tiered charges on your assets.

Platforms levy various additional costs for extras such as telephone trading.

Check a platform’s full rates and charges schedule before committing.

This guide explains how to work out which platform is cheapest for your situation.

SIPP charges on the table don’t include all the various additional fees levied for services once you’re in drawdown. The drawdown figure we do include is the annual ongoing charge you’ll pay for flexi-access drawdown.

Platforms run temporary offers and discounts from time-to-time. Don’t let these sway your decision. Obviously they’re a lovely “How Do You Do?” if you were going to choose that broker anyway.

Platform charges are on top of the investment fees you’ll pay for holding funds, ETFs, and other products in your portfolio.

Understanding trading platform account names

Accounts names vary across the online broker universe. However they typically conform to the following types:

  • Trading = a taxable account. Your investments are not tax-sheltered as they would be in a stocks and shares ISA or a SIPP. You will incur dividend income tax and capital gains tax on your investments if you exceed your allowances.
  • SIPP = Self-Invested Personal Pension. Tax sheltered.

Choosing investments at your trading platform

Why are there only links to some brokers?

Links to brokers and investment platforms are affiliate links, where we may be paid a fee if you go on to open an account with them. We do not choose to include platforms in our table based on whether such affiliate fees are on offer, nor does the existence of such an arrangement change the fees you pay – it is a marketing payment made by them as an incentive for websites to drive traffic to their site. We’d like more brokers to pay us when we introduce new customers – it helps us pay our way on Monevator! Including all brokers but only linking where an affiliate agreement is in place was the best compromise we could come up with.

What this table won’t tell you

For in-depth customer feedback on individual platforms, ask away in our comments or at Money Saving Expert’s Savings & Investments board, the ex-Motley Foolers on the Lemon Fool board, or reddit for a broader opinion.

We haven’t accounted for exclusive, discounted funds. Most investment platforms stock much the same range but the bigger players in the market can negotiate slight fee discounts on certain funds. If you’re tempted by those ‘bargain’ offers then make sure that your total cost of investment isn’t more expensive once you load the platform fees on top.

Please tell us about additions or corrections using the comment form below. Please supply a Web link to your data if possible in your comment to help us verify what should go into the table.

We’ll keep this table as up-to-date as possible, and conduct a sweeping review every three months.

  1. Out to another broker []
  2. £169K vs Vanguard []
  3. £169K vs Vanguard []
  4. £43K vs Vanguard []
  5. £55K vs Vanguard []
  6. £43K vs Vanguard []
  7. £55K vs Vanguard []
  8. Also known as ii []
  9. £167.88 Funds Fan plan; £239.88 Super Investor plan []
  10. 2 free fund trades per month Funds Fan plan; 2 free UK trades per month Super Investor plan []
  11. £3.99 on Fund Fans or Super Investor plan []
  12. £3.99 on Super Investors plan []
  13. £39.95 for gilts []
  14. Out to another broker []
  15. Check though as Vanguard say there are some exceptions []
  16. 0.1% £250,001 – £1 million, 0.05% £1 million – £2 million, 0% over £2 million []
  17. 0.2% £250,000 – £1 million. Charges not tiered below £1 million. No fee for assets over £1 million. []
  18. ETF and IT fees capped at £45 []
  19. 0.2% £250,001 – £500,000, 0.15% £500,001 – £1 million, 0.05% £1 million – £2 million, 0% over £2 million. Tiered charge []
  20. Charge waived by 1 trade per month []
  21. Can’t offset dealing fees if only own LISA account []
  22. £47K vs Vanguard []
  23. £47K vs Vanguard []
  24. Charge applies to each account separately []
  25. 0.2% £250,001 – £1 million, 0% over £1 million. Charge applies to each account separately []
  26. 0.25% £250,001 – £1 million, 0.1% £1 million – £2 million, 0% over £2 million. Charge applies to each account separately []
  27. 0.35% £50,001 – £250,000, 0.25% £250,001 – £500,000, 0% over £500,000 []
  28. Out to another broker []
  29. No funds. []
  30. Commission-free ETFs trade on European exchanges not LSE. Other restrictions apply []
  31. £5 max []
  32. or by £15,000+ assets in Smart Portfolio accounts. Quarterly dealing fees paid are deducted from custody fee []
  33. e.g. $10 inactivity fee – $6 dealing fee = $4 actual fee that month. Waived on $100,000+ accounts []
  34. Reduced by value of dealing fees. Inactivity fee is $3 for under 25s and reduced by dealing fees []
  35. Up to £50,000 value. £6 + 0.05% of incremental trade value over £50,000. Max £29. Fixed pricing structure []
  36. Our calculations assume one purchase per month and four sales per year, and that you take advantage of lower priced regular investment schemes when available. Portfolios consist of funds or ETFs or a 50:50 mix of the two. []
{ 2572 comments… add one }
  • 2401 Adam July 14, 2019, 11:01 am

    Has anyone ever successfully negotiated fee reductions on any of these brokers? What amount of holdings do you need for them to even consider?

  • 2402 Gally July 18, 2019, 3:13 pm

    Anybody know of a Fund platform that will allow a Discretionary Trust Account holding Vanguard funds. Alliance savings trust charges £120pa for a dealing account and a further £375 special charges £495 in total.

    Anybody know of an alternative?

  • 2403 vanguardfan July 18, 2019, 3:24 pm

    I believe Hargreaves Lansdown have this facility, but it won’t be cheap if you are holding funds and have a reasonable amount invested.
    I suspect the ATS offer is pretty competitive – but you should be aware that ATS have been taken over by Interactive Investor and accounts will be merged soon. II do NOT offer Trust accounts, and are giving very little information about what will happen to transferred ATS accounts of types which they do not support.
    I’m not sure of any other brokers, but you could try the major banks eg Barclays, HSBC. I’d be interested in any feedback.

  • 2404 Passive Pete July 18, 2019, 3:53 pm

    I have two trust accounts with Sharedeal Active and hold Vanguard’s ETF’s there. The broker comparison table says that funds can be held at Sharedeal by telephone orders only. There’s no annual cost, so this one might be worth investigating, subject to the telephone order constraint not causing you too much hassle.

  • 2405 Emma September 5, 2019, 9:51 am

    Are you sure the annual platform fee for Lloyds is correct? It says on their website that the fee is £20 six monthly, so £40 annually. Unless I have misunderstood.

  • 2406 The Accumulator September 5, 2019, 1:13 pm

    No Emma, the misunderstanding is all mine. I’ve misread their charges sheet – the annual fee should be £40 as you say. Thank you very much for the heads up. My apologies all for the mix-up. Will get this change.

  • 2407 Emma September 5, 2019, 1:50 pm

    Thank you, The Accumulator. The comparison table is incredibly useful and having tried to compare just a few different platforms, I know it must be very time consuming.

  • 2408 WhiteSheep September 7, 2019, 1:14 pm

    Thanks for this great resource!

    I am a bit confused by Interactive Brokers. Their website states that “[they] do not currently support ISAs (Individual Savings Accounts)”, and SIPPs only through third-party administrators (e.g. https://www.interactivebrokers.co.uk/en/index.php?f=38149# or https://ibkr.info/article/1030). However, my reading of the table seems to imply that they would offer ISAs and SIPPs, and some of the earlier comments also refer to having a SIPP with IB? Have I misunderstood the table, or does it simply refer to intermediaries, or is there a different way to use UK tax sheltered accounts?

    (I find IB’s website one of the most confusing I have come across; the UK version seems to be a poorly adapted copy-and-paste of the US version.)

  • 2409 Mike September 7, 2019, 2:14 pm

    Hi all,

    Has the Bestinvest SIPP always had a £120 admin fee?
    I’ve had my SIPP with them for around 18 months, and at no point on my statement has any quarterly payment been taken. Only the 0.3% fund fee.
    I looked at all my original correspondance with them and again no £120 fee is mentioned. I’ve received nothing from them saying that one will now be charged.

    Does anyone have any insight into this?


  • 2410 The Accumulator September 7, 2019, 3:40 pm

    @ White Sheep – Nice one – I should have put a n/a in Interactive Broker’s ISA column. Will update. IB does enable you to use SIPPs under the terms you link to. How that works in practice is beyond the scope of the table. I agree that the IB website is not user-friendly. Some investors are pro IB’s features but I think pro or semi-pro is the operative word. Seems to me that IB is best suited to active investor grandmasters who know exactly what they’re getting into. Here’s one:

    @ Mike – The fee came in last year. Perhaps they don’t levy it on legacy clients?

  • 2411 Robert September 10, 2019, 9:56 am

    Hello all, I am looking to move my shares and etfs portfolio to a new platform. Does anyone have experience of xo.com and iweb? I’d be interest to know what there service is like, and whether thay have the full range of etfs available, and any other helpful info? charges seem cheap? much obliged to you all, thank you. Robert

  • 2412 Jeff Beranek September 10, 2019, 12:52 pm

    I am an account holder with both X-O and iWeb, used for holding FT350 listed shares. They both can be used to buy LSE listed ETFs and ORB bonds also. Probably a very wide range of ETFs on both, but you don’t really know until you try. X-O’s website is *extremely* basic. In order to withdrawn cash or transfer cash between accounts you need to send them an email… The site hasn’t changed for the 8 years I’ve been with them. Service isn’t exactly bad, it’s just non-existent. My wife still has an account with them because I don’t want to pay the exit fees to switch. I had to close my X-O account because they (now) won’t allow customers with a US passport (even if also British and permanently living in the UK). I switched my ISA to iWeb, which I much prefer. Just £25 to open and just £5 a trade. The website is basic but much better than X-O. It does everything I need it to do. To be honest, it’s a wonder how these and other platforms make any money, so from that point of view there is a risk of them going under. However, most are parents of a larger company (e.g. X-O/Jarvis, iWeb/HBOS). I don’t want to suggest that the companies are in trouble, but what happened to Beaufort and SVS (both went insolvent) is concerning – especially Beaufort where client assets were potentially at risk of (partial) loss in order to pay administrators’ fees.

  • 2413 The Accumulator September 10, 2019, 8:54 pm

    iWeb is the same as Halifax is the same as Lloyds. If you think Lloyds are OK then so is iWeb – shabby website or no. The worst-case scenario at Beaufort didn’t materialise: https://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/diyinvesting/article-6031143/Beaufort-clients-cash-returned-following-High-Court-ruling-platforms-safe.html

    I use iWeb too. I’ve never had a problem but I’m not very demanding. I’ve probably sent them two emails in 10 years. If service is important to you then don’t go bargain bucket.

  • 2414 Sparschwein September 10, 2019, 10:12 pm

    I’ve been using iWeb too since this year. The website is basic and the processes can be clunky e.g. for a partial transfer in from another ISA. If you cannot find an ETF in their online tool (also clunky), chances are it may be available anyway or they can set it up. I found their customer service helpful in both cases. I’m satisfied with them overall. The main limitation is the choice of funds; further limited in practice by the excessive 1% currency conversion fee for anything that’s not listed in GBP.

  • 2415 Sparschwein September 10, 2019, 10:43 pm

    @WhiteSheep @TA
    Agreed IB can be labyrinthine, sometimes nightmarish when starting out, but the access to the markets it offers is absolutely fantastic.
    Now I’m intrigued – can anyone explain how IB’s SIPP arrangement works? Could my partner’s Ltd company open a Pension Administrator (master) account and then we invest through SIPP Beneficiary subaccounts?

  • 2416 Atanas September 16, 2019, 3:19 pm

    I currently have a trading account for my limited company with Interactive Investor. Everything was fine, until they announced a price hike of 29.99 on top of the regular service plan. That’s too much for my liking… The only platforms I could find offering business trading accounts are II & HL. Anyone else trading via their limited company? What platform would you suggest, that allows trading of funds alongside stocks/ETFs?

  • 2417 Linda September 16, 2019, 10:20 pm

    I have a couple of funds in an ISA with Charles Stanley Direct. They won’t let me transfer them out because one is a closed fund & the other is an institutional fund. Is it possible to sell these funds & then transfer the cash to another platform , keeping it in the ISA wrapper?

  • 2418 Adam September 16, 2019, 10:27 pm

    @Linda Yes you can absolutely hold cash in an ISA, and thats normally the recommended approach anyhow as you’ll generally pay an exit fee per fund – only 1 fee if you’re in cash.

  • 2419 WhiteSheep September 18, 2019, 9:43 pm

    @Sparschwein – I am not an expert on any of this, but I don’t think becoming a SIPP administrator is something you would want to do unless it is in your line of business. The first IB page that I linked to above states “A SIPP Administrator is an entity that is authorized and regulated in the United Kingdom”. There is some more detail on the FCA website, e.g. “A guide for Self-Invested Personal Pensions (SIPP) operators”.

    @TA – Thanks. It was actually the firevlondon blog where I first heard about IB (and their cheap interest rates on margin loans). The main reason I was curious about IB is that I heard that their international currency transfer rates are also very competitive, possibly more so than most currency brokers.

  • 2420 Snowman September 20, 2019, 10:42 am

    Hargreaves Lansdown are reported to be removing their exit charges.

    Multiple news items say this but nothing official on the HL website currently

  • 2421 Linda September 22, 2019, 11:51 am

    Many thanks.

  • 2422 Linda September 22, 2019, 11:56 am

    Their ISA section says “No hidden charges to make payments, deal, switch holdings or exit”.

  • 2423 Frank Frank September 22, 2019, 3:50 pm

    An essential piece of information for Monevator to provide, would be whether a platform shows the investors capital gains and accumulated losses carried forward. The Fidelity platform does this, but it is an expensive one and I do not know of any others. Any help?

  • 2424 FIRE v London October 22, 2019, 5:16 am

    @Atanas – I appear to be something of an IB cheerleader…. and I use them for a Ltd Company. Their service is a good one. And margin loans, an IB speciality, are even more effective with Ltd Company because the interest charges are tax deductible.

  • 2425 Tudno October 25, 2019, 1:46 pm

    A very useful table. For infrequent traders like me, iWeb and XO are probably the cheapest options for ISAs. I have had accounts with both for around ten years now, and each works fine for me, although it is true that XO’s offering does come across as rather basic. From time to time, I do think about opening an ISA with another provider since the amount of money protected by the FSCS would only be £50k in the event of insolvency. However, that could potentially lead to holding ISAs with several companies, which could end up being a bit of a faff.

  • 2426 David R October 25, 2019, 3:27 pm

    It is worth spreading investments across 3 or 4 platforms.

    My first platform was SVS XO. This is now in administration. I probably won’t lose any money from this (despite being over the 50k limit), but – all my holdings and cash are frozen, probably for a year or so. Maybe more.

    Inconvenient, if it is 20-30pct of your investments. But much worse if it is 100%.

  • 2427 Max November 5, 2019, 10:45 pm

    The table is great, thanks a lot!
    I currently hold a SIPP with Hargreaves Lansdown and the actual fee is + 0.45% UNCAPPED. There is NO MAX £200 as wrongly indicated in the table. It’s +0.45% flat on all investments for amounts between £0 and £250,000, above £250,000 it goes down to +0.25% uncapped as well.

  • 2428 Charlie November 6, 2019, 12:51 pm

    @Max the £200 cap on HL SIPP fees applies to shares (including investment trusts, exchange-traded funds etc) held in their SIPP. You’re right to state that the fees for holding funds does not fall inside this cap.
    See this page for info: https://www.hl.co.uk/pensions/sipp/charges-and-interest-rates

  • 2429 Supy November 20, 2019, 11:28 am

    Very useful – thanks.
    If possible please add dividend reinvestment charges – these vary widely and can mount up on ETF-only portfolios.
    Some info on additional account types not covered by the table:
    Lifetime ISA: Among the very limited range of platforms offering this, I found AJ Bell cheapest if you’re planning to max out the 4K annual limit and investing until age 60 (started LISA because of SIPP limits for non-working spouse).
    Junior ISA: If regular investing then ii don’t charge only a single “Service plan” fee for an adult account with linked JISA. Also trading credit is shared with the adult account, so if both on regular investment (£0.99) then effectively no extra charge for the JISA.

  • 2430 Mark November 26, 2019, 3:17 pm

    Fidelity looks a great deal (£45p.a. capped) and no fee for drawdown if using IT/ETFs only in a SIPP: what am I missing?

  • 2431 JC November 26, 2019, 4:32 pm

    @Mark — yes, my transfer to Fidelity completed this week. £45 is great. But, the customer service hasn’t been marvellous. Perfectly polite, but 8-10 days to respond to messages.

  • 2432 Stephen Watson November 26, 2019, 5:13 pm

    I moved to Fidelity a year ago and it’s a fantastic deal. Website is good but customer service appalling. They took about 6 months to transfer my SIPP. They also recently bought the incorrect etf when reinvesting dividends. All this things were eventually sorted out. I wait in trepidation to see you easy it will be to set up drawdown

  • 2433 Mark November 26, 2019, 5:54 pm

    @JC , @Stephen Thank you both. I will fill in the transfer form. Thanks again.

  • 2434 Kraggash November 26, 2019, 10:32 pm

    I have just moved an ISA from Fidelity. Also took about 6 months due to Fidelity mstakes.. Customer service used to be great (if direct customer, not through Cavendish). Very slow now: took them 3 months to investigate my complaint.

  • 2435 The Accumulator December 1, 2019, 1:54 pm
  • 2436 Haphazard December 2, 2019, 5:15 pm

    There are some comments above about the FSCS limit on compensation if the provider goes insolvent.
    I’m no expert on this but I thought the limit had now risen from £50,000 to £85,000?

  • 2437 Adam December 2, 2019, 5:41 pm

    You’re correct, it’s risen. But that FSCS protection has nothing to do with insolvency. If a broker goes insolvent the management of the assets will just be taken over by another broker. The FSCS protection only kicks into place if theres fraud.

  • 2438 Michael December 10, 2019, 11:47 am

    Can you please add SaxoTrader to the analysis?

    Also, for any other resident non-doms, in addition to having a UK business and accounts, they will allow you to open up an account in Denmark so that your income and gains are overseas, so taxable on the remittance basis. I’ve used SaxoTrader for years as they’re the only ones I’ve found that will allow UK residents to open an offshore account. Shout if you know of any others that are cheaper.

  • 2439 The Accumulator December 17, 2019, 10:33 pm

    Thank you for the insight Michael. I’ll add Saxo to the next update in January.

  • 2440 Neverland December 20, 2019, 12:42 pm

    Is anyone else moving from ATS following completion of the Interactive Investor takeover?

    I’m curious where you are going. I am in the process of doing a partial transfer to YouInvest/AJ Bell, but I’m wondering where to move the remaining balance.

  • 2441 dee January 6, 2020, 7:58 pm

    hi can anybody help me want to invest in low to med risk on a monthly basis opening £500 with £100 to £200 per month self employed so never sure of income where do I start thanks dee

  • 2442 Snowman January 8, 2020, 11:21 am

    The Hargreaves Lansdown entry in the table needs updating following their removal of exit charges last year

  • 2443 John McLusky January 9, 2020, 12:16 pm

    Interactive Investor have scrapped their regular investment fees according to an email I got from them today, so an update is needed!

  • 2444 Adam January 9, 2020, 2:33 pm

    Interactive Investor just dropped their regular investment fee, its now free. Not that I suspect this impacts anyone in reality given you already had £7.99 of monthly credit.

  • 2445 Snowman January 15, 2020, 12:33 pm

    The Halifax Share Dealing £90 SIPP transfer (exit) fee no longer applies; you get this message when you log in

    With effect from 15th November 2019, there is no longer a charge for transferring your SIPP to another provider. The £90 charge for transferring to another registered pension scheme and the £510 charge for transferring to a Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS) have been removed and will no longer be applied’

  • 2446 Geoff January 16, 2020, 5:47 pm

    @ Adam If a broker goes insolvent the management of the assets will just be taken over by another broker. The FSCS protection only kicks into place if there’s fraud. Given this is it worth having ISAs with more than one provider. I’m considering consolidating all mine with one broker because as Tudno says above it becomes a bit of a faff especially if you want to fund both portfolios.

  • 2447 Jeff Beranek January 16, 2020, 6:33 pm

    There is an article about this on Monevator. If a broker goes under it could take a while for you to access your money. One potential issue is that the administrator is allowed to access customer funds if their costs are very high, so the risk is not zero. https://monevator.com/investor-compensation-scheme. Personally the convenience of having stuff in one place outweighs the risk, but I would be cautious of very low cost brokers or ones you’ve never heard of.

  • 2448 Tudno January 16, 2020, 8:08 pm

    It is a faff having stuff split across different brokers . . however, I suspect it would be even more of a faff to have everything in one place and then lose access to all of it, even if only temporarily. As others have said, if a broker goes into administration then another broker will take over and everything gets sorted. The problem here is that one could potentially lose access to one’s holdings for several weeks, possibly several months. Apart from brokers going into administration, server failures and software glitches are other possible nuisances, but those should be sorted fairly quickly. I have the majority of my ISA holdings with iWeb and as they are owned by Lloyds, then I would hope that any possibility of them going into administration is pretty remote. The remainder of my ISA holdings are with XO and although I am perfectly happy with their service I am aware that they are relatively small so I have stopped adding to those holdings. The next ISA account that I open will be with HL. I have always viewed HL as rather pricey, but as I get older reliability become more important and one thing that HL have going for them is their size, which should hopefully mean a very remote possibility of going into administration – also, I will not be investing in funds, just equities, ETFs and ITs, so that will help to reduce costs. If I ever come to a parting of the ways with my employer then I will be looking to switch my Personal Pension to a SIPP and that’s going to mean looking around and weighing the options up all over again.

  • 2449 Robbo January 17, 2020, 10:47 am

    @ Tudno I was just wondering why you would switch your Personal Pension to a SIPP if you were to leave your employer? I have been thinking about doing this with a pension from a previous employer mainly because the range of funds isn’t that great compared to the brokers above however in terms of fees I don’t think I would save much so haven’t gone ahead with it yet. Were there any other advantages that I may have overlooked?

  • 2450 Geoff January 17, 2020, 12:17 pm

    @ Jeff Just read the article, one worry I had was going over the FSCS limit, but as my ETF’s are all domiciled in Ireland and Luxemburg I don’t qualify anyway! I like you am looking for convenience so will probably put things under one roof and merge any overlapping holdings. As the writer says the likes of Vanguard, iShares and State Street are unlikely to go under (Lehman Bros!). On the subject of overseas domiciled funds how will Brexit affect these given in her speech just after the turn of the year Ursula von der Leyen said no free movement of labour no free movement of goods and services

  • 2451 Tudno January 17, 2020, 1:06 pm

    @Robbo – the range of investment options would be much greater in a SIPP and give more control. Another thing is that I recently contacted my PP provider and asked them for an estimate of annual income if I were to retire within the next few months. When I received the answer I wasn’t bowled over by it – for drawdown, the annual income amounts to about 3.6% of the value of my pension fund and is only slightly more than the income from their annuity option. I haven’t made up my mind that I am definitely going to switch to a SIPP – one thing about what my PP provider is offering is that it would be pretty secure and offers peace of mind. Still having said that, my reaction to the 3.6% was definitely one of disappointment. I have other sources of income that I could call on in retirement, so if that PP was my only source of income apart from the state pension then I might take a much more cautious view about switching to a SIPP.

  • 2452 lewys February 3, 2020, 9:44 pm

    A key missing component here is the FX charges which can be huge for investing in US stocks (Freetrade is not so free with a 0.45% FX charge compared to just 0.1% for Degiro)

  • 2453 IanH February 6, 2020, 6:35 pm

    Just checked out HSBC direct investments and it looks like the cost basis has changed from the table “There’s no set-up fee involved, we just charge an annual account fee of 0.25% payable quarterly.” So they should be moved to the flat fee section if I’ve got it right. Also here: https://www.hsbc.co.uk/investments/products-and-services/global-investment-centre/ It looks like you have to open a current account with them too to qualify for the investment account, though there is a £125 switch deal available now (Feb 2020).

  • 2454 Jeffrey Beranek February 6, 2020, 10:08 pm

    I have an HSBC InvestDirect ISA and share-dealing account. I don’t hold funds, so it’s just £10.50 flat fee per quarter for the ISA and £10.50 per trade. The % fee must be for open-ended funds?

  • 2455 The Accumulator February 8, 2020, 12:58 pm

    @ IanH – the link you’ve shared is for HSBC’s Global Investment Centre – a different service covered in Percentage Fee Broker section of the table. Here’s the link to the flat fee HSBC Invest Direct service: https://www.hsbc.co.uk/investments/products-and-services/invest-direct/pre-apply/

  • 2456 Simon T February 11, 2020, 1:57 pm

    Wonder whether anybody could help me – I love this web site but I get confused on platforms
    Sorry – long post
    Retiring at 55 in November this year, working up to that date
    Have company pensions all over the place – including three in the National Pension Trust
    The NPT is not all of the market but they have some Balanced and Adventurous portfolios – the admin charge is 0.39% and the fund charges are 0.11% – so 0.50% in total
    By looking at some of these funds I think I can do this for a lot cheaper – assuming fund charges are 0.22% (single Vanguard fund)
    Pension pot is £680,000
    I will be moving abroad in three years (so this is a consideration – hopefully they will let me all keep it in the UK as I will be back when I am 70)
    I want to take some of my tax free cash at the beginning of December – right after I leave work and also (I assume) sell units each month to fund my pension “salary” – the natural yield won’t be enough for me
    What I can’t quite figure out is the dealing costs of selling the units
    As an aside I will probably be having a GIA with the house proceed costs as well as some ISA investments I plan to put the tax free cash into.
    Hope I haven’t bored everybody but I am looking at broker tables and not quite sure whether I am reading them right

  • 2457 Learner February 11, 2020, 4:52 pm

    I think I must be missing something. II seems to be cheapest if I’m planning to be a very passive investor and have a reasonable enough size portfolio to be looking at the fixed fee rather than percentage fee brokers.
    I’m looking at moving an ISA (and maybe a SIPP) over from an IFA because of the approx 2% pa fees and because the last 10yrs of returns (around 6.5% after fees) having invested with them doesn’t feel like it’s in any way justified the fees given it seems the money could have just gone into a world tracker and done much better with nowhere near the fees.
    So, I’m planning to kick off with a lump sum (the existing ISA / SIPP) going to 3 or 4 different tracker type funds / ETFs (or maybe a Vanguard LS fund) and then feed in regular monthly payments to each (plus to a trading account for money in excess of what I can put into the ISA / SIPP each month) thereafter.
    It looks like with II if that’s what I’m planning on I’d be up for the platform fee 120pa (and could use the trading credit from that fee if I wanted to rebalance or defuse gains at some point each year) with the regular monthly top up investments being “free”. Whereas with iWeb (which seems to be the competitor) the 5 per trade fee ends up costing you more if you are making more than 24 payments in to top up the account each year (so the two platforms are about a wash cost wise if you have 2 funds / ETFs that you plan on making regular monthly contributions to but anything over that iWeb costs more and if you are looking at having your investments across ISA / SIPP and a trading account then even having just 1 fund in each seems to result in 3x trades per month from an iWeb perspective!). And, with the SIPP, the II costs are again lower than the iWeb costs and so this reduces it iWeb not having a monthly fee benefit even further .
    Just want to make sure I am reading this right (and I understand that I’m probably talking about the difference of a sandwich a week in cost over the year but I’m trying to come back to this after lots of time looking at it and then doing nothing as a result of decision paralysis). It would be great to understand if it is as simple as the above in terms of cost comparison (and here I’m assuming that both platforms give me access to the actual funds / ETFs I’m after) or if I’m missing something obvious.

  • 2458 Linda February 14, 2020, 1:17 pm

    Could someone clarify Fidelity fees for me. Does the £10 dealing fee apply to everything, for example SIPPs? Does the dash mean ditto

  • 2459 Jamie February 14, 2020, 1:23 pm

    @Linda — Yes, I pay £10 a trade with my Fidelity SIPP.

  • 2460 stephen watson February 14, 2020, 4:09 pm

    Agree with Linda but also £1.50 per trade for dividend re investment, which can be changed whenever you wish. I’m a Fidelity customer and have both an ISA and a SIPP. On their website I find their charges very confusing but they are very cheap in certain circumstances. I have just started taking lump sums out of my SIPP and the only charges I have each year are £45, which is the capped limit as I have just 1 etf. I challenge anyone to find a cheaper provider if you just have etfs – especially when you start taking money out as there are no charges for withdrawal. Their customer service is awful but I am now glad I persevered with them.

  • 2461 Martin Dell February 14, 2020, 6:06 pm

    I’d avoid ii at all costs. I’m a current customer and totally frustrated by the black hole thst is their customer service. I have a significant portfolio with them across ISA, SIPP and trading accounts and I’m still waiting for an anser to a query I raised with them several months ago. I was attracted by ‘cheap’ – but now I know why :/

  • 2462 Kraggash February 15, 2020, 9:07 am

    I was with Fidelity for many years, and their CS used to be brilliant.
    Now, as you say, it is pants.

  • 2463 Sparschwein February 15, 2020, 2:36 pm

    Is any of the mainstream SIPPs suitable for expats?
    It’s a minefield for anyone expecting to move abroad before or during retirement.

    Vanguard: “Once you move abroad or lose UK residency, your account will be frozen… you will not be able to make any deposits *or alter your investments*.” “Upon drawdown, which will be coming in phase 2 of the SIPP of which we do not have a date as yet, I am unable to comment as we have not finalised the proposition.”

    Aegon: unlike Vanguard, non-residents can change investments within their DC pension account, but “You cannot have a drawdown account if you live abroad, you must be a UK resident.”

    For so-called “international SIPPs” that are marketed towards expats, the fees are horrendous.

  • 2464 Simon T February 15, 2020, 3:55 pm

    @Sparschwein I actually was looking at this this week, and I spotted the Vanguard TandCs and was disappointed as I wanted to invest ISAs, SIPPs and a GIA before I moved abroad. I have checked the AJ Bells various accounts (Barclays, iWeb, halifax etc), and they are all fine unless … you move to the US or Canada

  • 2465 Sparschwein February 15, 2020, 6:51 pm

    @Simon – thanks for the tip. I too had my mind set on Vanguard, now need to reconsider…
    US/CAN is not in the picture, fortunately.

  • 2466 PA February 17, 2020, 11:32 am

    More consolidation news … II agreed to acquire The Share Centre
    Link on the II homepage

  • 2467 Vanguardfan February 17, 2020, 5:26 pm

    Mmm, is anyone else slightly uneasy at the pace and scale of IIs acquisition activity?
    Does anyone have a view on their underlying financial strength?
    As a forced customer following the ATS takeover, I don’t think I have a clear view about their relative safety.

  • 2468 CisforV February 19, 2020, 5:01 am

    The Vanguard SIPP is now live!

    They sent a notification email to those who registered interest. The “What we offer” page still says “coming soon”, but you can apply for a SIPP under the “My accounts – Open new account” section.

    Their site had been undergoing maintenance for a few days in the last week so I was hoping that was due to the SIPP launch.

  • 2469 Neverland February 19, 2020, 9:12 am


    ii is majority owned by JC Flowers a private equity fund started by an eponymous ex-Goldman Sachs (vampire squid) banker Christopher Flowers

    It is so well run that its former European head Ravi Sinha was convicted of fraud in 2012 and fined £3m by the FCA and banned from the financial services industry for life. The only reason he avoided jail was because the fund declined to cooperate with the UK legal authorities to allow them to press criminal charges

    As soon as our money was transferred to ii I immediately applied to transfer it out

    I experienced enormous problems with ii through either incompetence, understaffing or just plain being duplicitous but the transfers just finally completed a few days ago

    The most charitable reading of JC Flowers are trying to do with ii is to create a Frankenstein’s monster from acquisitions/body parts that looks like Bell/Hargreaves to float on the stock market but personally I didn’t want to stick around to deal with the fall out

  • 2470 Neverland February 19, 2020, 9:27 am


    We have some iWeb accounts and the customer service is actually very good when you need it

    The best you can say for the interface is that it is very easy to understand since it is so basic. Think 90s style webpages

    There is also the matter of financial backing: ii is owned by a shadowy private investment firm with a questionable history; wile iWeb is owned by a listed and highly regulated highly bank

    Perhaps something worth paying an extra £50-100 a year for

  • 2471 PA February 19, 2020, 9:48 am

    On the subject of customer service – I’m sure there are good and bad stories about each platform as you are dealing with individuals at the platform end. If you need an urgent answer use the phone option otherwise use the secure messaging as provided by most.

    On the subject of consolidation – it is hard to see the banks who operate multiple platforms not merging those at some time in the future. Costs and a single brand aligns to banks online simplification model.

  • 2472 babyboomer Croydon February 19, 2020, 11:56 am

    I am also an ATS customer transferred to 2i looking for somewhere else to go for my discretionary trust account holding only 1 Vanguard fund. Anybody know which of the above will open an account in the name of a Trust. When I ring the staff only know about personal accounts.

  • 2473 Vanguardfan February 19, 2020, 1:14 pm

    Yes, same situation here. Although so far I have been reasonably satisfied with II customer service. I am wary about their understanding of trust accounts though, as they don’t offer this service except to legacy ATS customers.
    I think Hargreaves Lansdown may be an alternative, although much more expensive if you hold funds rather than shares/ETFs.

  • 2474 Passive Pete February 19, 2020, 4:23 pm

    I have trust accounts at Jarvis and my wife has some at Hargreaves Landsdown. You might need to telephone Jarvis to trade funds, but shares and ETF’s can be traded online.

  • 2475 Geoff February 20, 2020, 1:11 pm

    Has anyone had dealings with Halifax Share Dealing. I’m thinking of using them for an ISA which will only hold a Vanguard LS funded by monthly investments. At £36.50 pa (dealing charges and platform fee) it seems like a no brainer.

  • 2476 Vanguardfan February 20, 2020, 2:37 pm

    I use iWeb which I gather is the essentially same website as Halifax. It’s basic but totally fine for what I need (I have never used a regular investment facility).

  • 2477 CisforV February 20, 2020, 2:54 pm

    Halifax Share Dealing is fine for your purposes. The regular investment works well. My only disappointment is that they take the £2 fee from your investment amount (e.g. you want to invest £100 but only £98 will be invested). So your ISA will be £24 short at the end of the year.

    Other brokers take the fee as a separate payment from a designated bank account. Halifax take the £12.50 from your bank so it’s annoying they don’t take the regular investment fee this way too.

  • 2478 Susan Jamieson February 20, 2020, 3:01 pm

    Tried it several years back and just found the interface too slow, basic and clunky. I use II and Hargreaves, with a dash of IG for share trading purposes. All much more sophisticated interfaces if you’re an active/involved investor.

  • 2479 Charlie February 20, 2020, 3:14 pm

    Regular investment in the Halifax Share Dealing SIPP works well, but one-off contributions are more awkward: I either have to post them a cheque(!) and fill out a contribution form or do a bank transfer and (insecurely!) email them the contribution form. Do they support one-off ISA contributions via debit card online? There are hints in the UI that this might be possible, but that they’ve disabled the facility for SIPP accounts.

    There is one daft thing about setting up regular contributions to LifeStrategy funds: their fund picker screen will show two entries both called “LIFESTRATEGY 60 PERC EQUITY” and it’s not until you click on the KIID link on the subsequent screen that you know whether you’re picking the Accumulation or Income flavour. So be careful when you set this up, but once it’s up an running you don’t have to touch it again. For the fees they ask, I can live with these quirks.

  • 2480 Geoff February 20, 2020, 4:43 pm

    thanks all. Susan ii is a little expensive for one regular monthly investment. Charlie new Ts & Cs from 24.02.20 it looks like you can set up a direct debit for investments and platform fee. Thanks for the tip about the stock picker I’ll keep my eye on it.

  • 2481 Nick February 28, 2020, 9:02 am

    Does anyone/everyone here split up their investment platforms to gain some extra security in terms of FSCS compensation scheme? I’m a little over that in some brokers carrying index funds / ETFs and wonder whether I should start spreading it out more. Majority of funds are with Vanguard…perhaps it’s at this level of actual fund choice I should diversify and not worry about platform?

  • 2482 Vanguardfan February 28, 2020, 9:23 am

    We have six accounts split across three brokers between us (one pension , one ISA and one taxable account each). All exceed FSCS limits. I’m not concerned about losing assets, I try to choose providers which should be solid (though of course you never know), but I think a more likely risk could involve not being able to access an account for a few months. Hence some spreading around. It’s a balance between risks and unnecessary complexity. Six accounts is quite enough to keep track of!

  • 2483 Michael March 1, 2020, 2:03 pm

    I’m currently with Cavendish Online, which utilises the Fidelity online platform. Having moved over the 26k ‘best for’ threshold this table recommends, I’m finding it very confusing as to which broker I should switch to. I currently hold around 30k and make monthly contributions of £604 (spread over 4 index funds).

    Also, when moving broker, do you have to sell all holdings and then move cash across, or are the holdings themselves transferred?

    I did look at Lloyds Bank Share Dealing, but they don’t offer the funds I have in my portfolio at present.

  • 2484 Mark March 12, 2020, 12:06 pm

    warning for those who like to use a stop loss in your SIPP; Fidelity don’t have stop loss orders.

  • 2485 Barny March 26, 2020, 5:58 pm

    @ Michael
    I’m with Fidelity for active funds whilst trying to find another platform to switch them to passive funds. I already use Vanguard and want to set up two passive fund platforms. Fidelity are ok, but will be expensive just to hold say 4 passive funds.
    By making Cavendish my broker, the Fidelity cost was reduced to 0.25%.

    When moving to another broker/platform you have three options.
    a) move everything as invested =In Specie which takes up to 6 weeks or more.
    b) switch to cash which should complete within 7/10 days but you’ll be out of the market
    c) switch to a passive fund such as Vanguard and then move. This will take less time because it’s just the one fund and you will still be

  • 2486 FutureExpat April 7, 2020, 2:44 pm

    Has anyone been successful in finding a stocks & shares ISA provider who won’t close your account when you move abroad to the USA? In my case I will be moving as a student for 2-3 years, and under US law international students on a student visa are ‘non-resident aliens’ in the USA, which means that my income outside the US won’t be taxed and so it’d make sense for me to keep my ISA open.

    I gather that ISA providers don’t want to engage with the bureaucratic hassle of US tax forms, but in my case this may not be such a problem. However I’m having difficulty finding one without a blanket rule on US residents – has anyone had any luck?

  • 2487 Jeff Beranek April 7, 2020, 3:02 pm

    @FutureExpat: I suggest talking to Hargreaves Lansdown first, seeing as they are one of the only UK brokerages that allow US citizens resident in the UK, so they might be understanding about UK citizens resident in the US. However that might not be the only issue, I somewhat doubt that you’ll be able to make contributions to the ISA whilst you are living in the US, because according to the ISA rules you need to be resident in the UK. Residence is normally determined by the number of days you’ve lived in the country. Things start to get tricky if you also earn some money in the US, in which case I would suggest talking to a US/UK tax specialist. That’s because you’ll have to start dealing with foreign tax credits, part-year returns (in both countries), and the fact that the US tax year is different to the UK tax year.

  • 2488 IvanOpinion April 9, 2020, 9:32 am

    @FutureExpat: You might want to check if you will lose your UK residence. Although common sense might lead you to assume that you will, this is not always a reliable guide in tax. The UK has a complex set of rules on this, which are aimed at preventing people from shedding their UK tax residence, but in your case it might be beneficial to retain this, as I would guess that most ISA companies will not be concerned as long as you are still UK tax resident (but check their T&Cs).

    An outline of the rules is here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/rdr3-statutory-residence-test-srt/guidance-note-for-statutory-residence-test-srt-rdr3

    In particular, you might find that a crucial factor is how many days you spend in the UK in a tax year. If you come home for summer, for instance, this might be enough. But you need to work through the rules really carefully.

  • 2489 Advice Seeker July 28, 2020, 8:37 am

    Would anyone give hints if I should focus to open my stock & shares ISA & stock dealing account ( including US stock ) on 1 or split it into 2 platform

    I shortlisted Fidelity as it’s price structure looks clean & simple & affordably cheaper also as this is one who offer US Stock & the Arkk etf that I am interested in.

    HL & ii doesn’t offer above arkk etf

    Also do anyone recommend IG which offer above etf & US stock I am interested in?

    Would people know Fidelity FX rate is it fair compared to others ? As I may actively trade in US stock

    Second thought is to open a 2nd passive account on top of the yearly tax-free investment limitation in Lloyds bank. This is my bank where I am holding my savings account in

    Is their FX rate fairly acceptable as well

    That’s all for now

    Thanks in advance would appreciate to hear some tips and advice

  • 2490 A James July 28, 2020, 9:27 am

    Good table very impressed glad I Finally come to this legit Page/forum.

    I am looking for 1 platform for my active US stock trading maybe 3-5 per month. Would people know if FX is fairly charged in IG ? Fidelity ? And Lloyd’s bank?

    Is their technical chart buy/sell page etc usefriendly and informative enough?

    I Have read all the comments I am also One of those who is considering getting 2 platforms i am also having Lloyd Bank as my bank As well

    One for stock and share ISA a more passive one Considering Lloyd’s bank as my own bank as well – reliable

    Any investment exceed the yearly limit I would like to use another Platform like IG and Fidelity – With etf that I want to invest but Lloyd bank doesn’t have ; possibly with better FX rate?

    Also how do people use Revolt to Benefit from the FX rate to buy US stock? Curious to know


  • 2491 Sparschwein July 28, 2020, 2:23 pm

    Fx charges can be a huge cost factor and always hidden in the small print.
    iWeb, AJ Bell and HL charge 1%.
    If you have the data for others please post here.
    IB has minimal Fx charges and a handy multi-currency account, but no ISA or SIPP option afaik.

  • 2492 A James July 28, 2020, 5:16 pm

    Great to know @sparschwein added to your list re FX rate charge my side Got

    Lloyd’s bank 1% ( legit. Fact-checked with their little print Detailed price List on website )

    IG 2% ( legit. Fact-checked with their price list )

    II ( try to look in all big and small prints yet they fail to mention the charge details yet a user mentioned ii allow him to buy us stock in gbp currency – await to be fact-checked )

    Await a full list to come !

  • 2493 Whoop July 28, 2020, 6:17 pm

    II have a tiered system, 1.5% above spot for <£25k: https://www.ii.co.uk/investing-with-ii/international-investing/foreign-exchange

  • 2494 Vanguardfan July 28, 2020, 6:35 pm

    II pay out dividends from VWRL in dollars. You then have to convert them to GBP if that’s what you want. I don’t know what the charge is, presumably it can be hidden in the exchange rate anyway?

  • 2495 Vanguardfan July 28, 2020, 6:53 pm

    @whoop, thanks. More expensive than my other brokers then!

  • 2496 Whoop July 28, 2020, 7:14 pm

    Yes, expensive. They do however allow holding multiple currencies, and in theory you can deposit directly with USD, so you can do the FX elsewhere if you want.

  • 2497 Vanguardfan July 28, 2020, 7:18 pm

    Well, all I want is my divis converted to gbp as cheaply as possible

  • 2498 mhdgsn July 28, 2020, 7:22 pm

    I opened a Revolut account (where you have a USD denominated account). I then transfer in the VWRL USD dividends from II every so often (there’s a $35 II “admin” fee) and can then convert to GBP in Revolut for free (provided you stay under their monthly exchange limit which is £1000 I think) and at a much better exchange rate.

  • 2499 mhdgsn July 28, 2020, 7:44 pm

    I also receive VWRL dividends as USD in my II account. I found the conversion charges and poor FX rate very annoying so opened a Revolut account which enables me to have a USD “bank account”. Added it as to II and simply transfer USD into it (for a $35 “admin” fee) every so often. Then simply convert into your Revolut GBP account for free (as long as you stay under the monthly exchange limit which is £1000 I think). You can then do what you want with the GBP (e.g. transfer to your regular bank account). Revolut also gives much better USD-GBP exchange rates than II.

  • 2500 Vanguardfan July 28, 2020, 8:59 pm

    Thanks that’s a useful tip. My solution was simply to sell VWRL! Swapped for the global all cap OEIC.

  • 2501 Jeff Beranek July 28, 2020, 9:37 pm

    VWRP costs the same as VWRL but accumulates your dividends automatically

  • 2502 old_eyes July 29, 2020, 9:25 am

    @Advice Seeker

    I use the Lloyds Bank Online Direct Investment service as my platform (as with you also my current account and business account bankers). I have been with them for 2 years after swapping from a percentage fee platform. All I can say is it works fine. A bit clunkier than some of the more polished offerings, but I trade very little and it hasn’t caused me any problems. And when I made a mistake (finger trouble) they were very helpful in rapidly reversing the error.

    Little to say really. It operates in the background and does everything I want without asking too much of me.

  • 2503 Sherv July 29, 2020, 6:36 pm

    Hi all,

    due to my job I can only trade Funds or ETFs and am restricted with the choice of brokers.

    I am considering either:

    Hargreaves Lansdown
    Charles Stanley

    I will have aim to have an ISA as well (again only with Funds and ETFs) and invest 30-50k in my first year.

    Any recommendations and if yes, why?



  • 2504 Robbo August 1, 2020, 7:46 pm


    I currently have £185K in a Personal Pension with Aviva from my previous jobs and am looking to transfer it to another broker to lower my costs and get access to more funds, especially Vanguard. Aviva charge me 0.32% in management fees so I am paying about £600 a year at the moment (slightly more as 1 of the funds is a ‘UK smaller companies’ which has an additional 0.25% fee on top of the 0.32%).

    Based on the table above it seems if I stick to ETF’s my best options would be:

    1. Fidelity at £45/year (for ETF’s and IT’s only)
    2. AJ Bell Youinvest at £100/year (for ETFs, ITs, shares, and bonds)
    3. Hargreaves Lansdown at £200/year (for ETFs, ITs, shares, and bonds)
    4. Interactive Investor at £240/year (no restrictions)

    I already have ISA’s with iWeb and X-O.co.uk so have skipped brokers owned by the Lloyds Banking Group and Jarvis as I am trying diversify brokers across my portfolio.

    Any recommendations on which of the above to go for?

    Does anyone have any experience of Fidelity as £45/year seems almost too good to be true? The reviews on Trustpilot are pretty good (4.1 average) and actually better than Hargreaves Lansdown (3.3 average). AJ Bell Youinvest also get good reviews (average 4.4) and £100/year is still very competitive. Does anyone use them?

    Is there anything else I need to consider when choosing SIPP a provider?

    Thanks for any help!

  • 2505 Linda August 1, 2020, 8:05 pm

    I have a SIPP with Fidelity with ETFs & ITs only & the £45 a year is great. I don’t have anywhere near the amount you have so would advise reading their terms before going ahead. They only deal in whole units.

  • 2506 The Investor October 6, 2020, 12:58 pm

    Cavendish Online Investments Ltd has been acquired by Fidelity International and it is no longer accepting new customers.

    More details here:


  • 2507 Peter Barber October 10, 2020, 11:14 am

    Can anyone recommend a broker with low foreign exchange fees when buying and selling US shares e.g. Google, in a UK online broker account? It seems that there can be up to a 1.5% charge above the exchange rate when buying US shares using GBP. Thanks.

  • 2508 Jeff Beranek October 10, 2020, 11:27 am

    I believe IG.com have a 0.5% currency exchange fee.

  • 2509 Midnight_Marauder October 11, 2020, 8:30 am

    Looking for advice on comparing across brokers. The broad question is, is it reasonable to add the platform charge to the more specific investment charge to make a more valid comparison?
    Refering to an example could shed more light on this. So let’s say I want to compare Fidelity & Freetrade. This is going to be a back of the envelope comparison as the investable universe is different. The aim is to invest in the FTSE All-share.

    Fidelity offers – Fidelity Index UK Fund P Acc. OCF = 0.6% & transaction costs = 0.6%. So I make the specific charges to be 1.2%, and then to compare this to Freetrade, I want to also lump in the platform charge = 0.35% (assuming <£250k invested). So all in cost is ~1.55%

    Freetrade offers – SPDR® FTSE UK All Share UCITS ETF. OCF = 0.2% & transaction costs = 0.04%. So I make the specific charges to be 0.24%. The platform charge is fixed at £3 a month for the ISA across the portfolio, so I'm going to assume this is negligable over time. So all in cost is 0.24%.

    Is my thinking roughly correct here? I know it's a bit of an apples to oranges comparison because it's an ETF vs. OEIC. But through the lens of pure costs and eventual compounding, it looks like Freetrade would be the better option?

  • 2510 Midnight_Marauder October 12, 2020, 11:31 am

    **Edit to the previous comment**

    That Fidelity fund has OCF 0.06% and transaction costs 0.06%. So the comparison would be:

    Fidelity offers – Fidelity Index UK Fund P Acc. OCF = 0.06% & transaction costs = 0.06%. So I make the specific charges to be 0.12%, and then to compare this to Freetrade, I want to also lump in the platform charge = 0.35% (assuming £20k invested). So all in Total Cost of Investment is 0.47%

    Freetrade offers – SPDR® FTSE UK All Share UCITS ETF. OCF = 0.2% & transaction costs = 0.04%. So I make the specific charges to be 0.24%. The platform charge is fixed at £3 a month for the ISA across the portfolio, so I’m going to assume this is negligible over time. But for the specific example, with £20k invested, this would be 0.18%. So all in Total Cost of Investment is 0.42%.

  • 2511 foofifofum November 10, 2020, 12:05 am

    Hi Accumulator and Investor – slight correction on the iWeb fees. The SIPP is actually free to open but has a “Quarterly admin charge of £22.50 for SIPPs valued up to £50,000 and £45 for all other SIPPs”. See https://www.iweb-sharedealing.co.uk/our-accounts.html for more details.

    Hope this correction is accurate!

  • 2512 The Accumulator November 14, 2020, 7:34 pm

    @ foofifofum – you’re spot on. Thank you.

  • 2513 Mark November 14, 2020, 9:09 pm

    I’m looking to open a Junior ISA account for my children that are US citizens, which means noon-US listed funds should be avoided. Is there a Junior ISA provider that has very low fees for FX in order to buy US listed funds/ETFs?

  • 2514 Jeff Beranek November 15, 2020, 12:25 am

    @Mark – Sorry, but you are unlikely to find a UK/European broker now that will sell US domiciled ETFs or funds due to Mifid II / PRIIPs regulations on the sale of funds without KID documents. You will need to stick to using a SIPP (e.g. AJ Bell will allow US citizens) or use individual shares (but not investment trusts or REITs) to avoid both PFIC and Mifid II regulations – unless you use a US based investment adviser who will allow you to buy US funds (use HMRC reporting funds only) on a US brokerage platform, such as Charles Schwab. Taxes would need to be reported in both US and UK (unless you open an IRA, but contribution limits are low) and use IRS foreign tax credits to avoid double taxation.

  • 2515 Mark November 15, 2020, 10:49 am

    Oh yes , I had forgotten about the MiFiD 2 / PRIIPS regulations. But that’s still ok, I can buy closed end funds that are good enough for broad market exposure, for example BRK (which has the additional benefit of no dividends, so nothing to report until it’s sold). I know I can open a US account, but that could backfire on the UK tax side of things as any returns from money that I have given to the children would be attributed to me and taxed accordingly AFAIK.
    I just saw that Fidelity has no platform fees for Junior ISAs, but doesn’t do transfers, and I’m not sure they would take children that are US citizens as beneficiaries (their terms say no US persona as clients but also that the parent is the client so may be ok). I’m going to call them on Monday to find out.
    A good option could have been Trading 212, but looks like Junior ISAs are a work in progress stove the beginning of the year at least.

  • 2516 Jeff Beranek November 15, 2020, 11:05 am

    @Mark – I would be very careful about using “closed end funds”. Most non-US collective investment schemes will be regarded as PFIC by the IRS. You can probably get away with conglomerates to avoid PFIC/Mifid, (which BRK might be regarded as), but other companies might be a problem. Any company where their “gross income” is derived from investments or “other sources” not related to “regular business operations” is PFIC. I would be very surprised if Fidelity UK will allow accounts for or on behalf of US citizens. Trading 212 does not allow US persons. I have Junior ISAs with iDealing.com, but the accounts only hold FTSE100 company shares and reporting dividends etc to the IRS (on my return) is a lot of work. I would not recommend iDealing.com for holding many shares due to their high exit fees. I would instead recommend Hargreaves Lansdown for ISAs, or Junior ISAs, for US citizens in the UK.

  • 2517 David R November 17, 2020, 2:31 pm

    This table is a great resource. I hope that organisations that aim to help financial consumers are providing pointers to it …

    One build I would suggest: to add a column on investor protection, giving the FCA / FSCS accreditation references for each provider.

    For many investors, especially those approaching retirement – or even enjoying it already – one of the hard to manage risks is the shuttering, or default, of an investment platform. The protections are generous up to the £85k limit; beyond that, things get tricky.

    The mitigation strategy involves holding assets with more than one platform; then, if one platform goes into lockdown for 12-18 months, it is an inconvenience, not a catastrophe. But it is vital that the different platforms really *are* different. Some of the platforms listed are, in reality, duplicates (eg I think sharedeal active and jarvis…. also Halifax / iweb). And some platforms are not FCA /FSCS accredited, so the £85k protection is not part of the arrangement.

    It isnt strictly a ‘costs’ factor … until it is, and then it is a huge one.

  • 2518 Martin T November 18, 2020, 7:54 am

    Apologies if this has been asked before – can’t see it in recent comments – but does the fact that SIPPs are held by Pension Trustees provide any more protection in the event the provider goes bust?

    Interested to know people’s views on financial resilience – ii’s offer (which my wife uses) is ideal for the way I run my investments too, but I hesitate to put all our eggs in one basket.

  • 2519 Jeff Beranek November 18, 2020, 11:10 am

    @Martin T – Your shares, ETFs or funds are always “intermediated” or legally owned by a trustee, unless you own shares via paper certificates or through a CREST account. You are the “beneficial owner”, but there is a series of trusts and sub-trusts between you and the legal owner (often a bank). ISAs and SIPPs are always intermediated and most people hold any non-SIPP/ISA shares via a nominee account also. Unit trusts and OEICs are pooled funds and “represent a” portion of the assets of a fund, where the constituents are actually owned by the asset manager. Intermediated accounts (i.e. investments held via a broker) are typically “omnibus accounts”, which mean that your investments are not “segregated” but instead pooled with other shares. So if one user sells a share and another buys the same one, then ownership/stewardship might never change hands (either at the intermediary or at the CREST member stage). Things could potentially go wrong at any of these stages, although the trustee relationship is meant to be protected by law. The most likely problem would be getting locked out of your account until your contract gets passed to a new trustee, should one of the companies in the chain go belly up. SIPPs probably have stronger protection in law (compared to ISAs) and are more likely to be bailed out by the government should something go catastrophically wrong. But there are some pretty small companies offering SIPP accounts… Personally, I would stick with one or two of the largest brokers if you are going over the FSCS compensation limit. Remember, the limit is per person, per parent institution. I quite like having my SIPPs held with a different institution from my ISAs, and the cost/benefit analysis for each account type might make you choose different providers anyway. There are a few Monevator articles about the FSCS scheme and the potential risks involved, e.g. https://monevator.com/investor-compensation-scheme. The recent Law Commission paper about intermediated securities does not recommend getting rid of the process, but does suggest making it easier (but still more costly) to hold shares directly instead of via nominee. However, I don’t think this would effect ISAs and SIPPs because these would almost certainly always need to be held via a trustee.

  • 2520 Sparschwein November 18, 2020, 3:40 pm

    @Jeff B – fantastic explanation.

    I also like Finumus’ piece on the reliability (or not) of brokers and the FSCS.

    I go over the FSCS limit but spread over different institutions. The extra fees are essentially an insurance premium.

  • 2521 Martin T November 18, 2020, 9:09 pm

    @Jeff Beranek yes, fantastically detailed explanation, thanks. Guess the issue is partly about whether urgent liquidity is needed, as well as ultimate safety – cf recent Woodford debacle!

  • 2522 The Accumulator November 22, 2020, 11:07 am

    @ Martin T – I do the same as Sparschwein – spread the risk across a few institutions but don’t obsess about the £85K limit.

    @ Jeff – great comments, thank you!

  • 2523 Snowman November 24, 2020, 3:23 pm

    FCA statement on the Platform exit fees consultation (from just over a week ago).


    ‘Our Investment Platforms Market study (2018/19) found that while the market works well overall, there were areas where it could work better. One of these areas was the barrier created by exit fees when consumers try to switch to a platform that better meets their needs.

    We announced in Policy Statement 19/29 that we would consult on restricting platform exit fees in Q1 2020. However, this was delayed due to coronavirus, with an intention to consult in Spring 2021; we have now decided to stop work on this consultation.

    Since expressing our concerns in the 2018 Interim Report, there has been a marked shift in the market away from exit fees, with at least two major platforms announcing that they would no longer be charging exit fees. The FCA welcomes the direction of travel by the investment platforms sector in phasing out the use of exit fees.

    The Exit Fees Consultation was one of a number of remedies to address barriers to switching, including new rules to make moving platforms easier which have already been put in place and come into force in February 2021. We have therefore decided to stop the exit fees work but will be closely monitoring the situation, with the potential to consult on new rules if market changes lead to harm re-emerging in this area.’

  • 2524 Tom November 24, 2020, 11:06 pm

    FSCS Funds/ETF compo rules changing for (maybe) 9000 UK sold products:

    “Tens of thousands of investors who have ploughed more than £60bn into EU-domiciled funds will not be covered by the compensation scheme post-Brexit in a serious blow to consumer protection.
    In a controversial move, the Treasury has agreed to continue allowing 9,000 EU-based funds to be sold to UK investors despite the fact the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) will have no regulatory oversight of these products.”


  • 2525 PG November 28, 2020, 5:22 pm

    I like David R’s suggestion of “a column on investor protection, giving the FCA / FSCS accreditation references for each provider”.

    Given that Halifax, Bank of Scotland, iWeb and Lloyds Bank Share Dealing are all a single FCA entity (number 183332) that reduces the number of flat-fee providers (as far as FSCS compensation is concerned) from six to three. Not much choice. It doesn’t help that Share Centre is being / has been absorbed by Interactive Investor.

  • 2526 The Accumulator November 28, 2020, 6:10 pm

    @ Tom – EU domiciled funds were never covered by the FSCS:

    @ Snowman – cheers!

  • 2527 Snowman November 30, 2020, 11:54 am
  • 2528 Aidan November 30, 2020, 3:09 pm

    AJBell Youinvest are increasing charges to £10/month minimum but are scrapping drawdown charges altogether and reducing tx out charges to 9.95/line+free for cash.

  • 2529 vanguardfan November 30, 2020, 3:49 pm

    @Aidan thanks for the heads up on that. Did they send out an email to customers about this? (I haven’t seen one)
    I checked on the website and it seems they are introducing a custody charge for shares/ETFs for the first time of 0.25% (same as for funds). This is capped at £30 per year for ISAs and Dealing accounts and £100 per year for SIPPs.
    Does this make Hargreaves cheaper now for ETF only portfolios? I will have to check.

  • 2530 vanguardfan November 30, 2020, 3:53 pm

    Although when I ask it to calculate my charges it gives £120 platform fee for the SIPP (plus VAT I wonder?) and £42 for the dealing account – no idea how they get that!

  • 2531 Vanguardfan November 30, 2020, 4:04 pm

    Sorry I got that completely wrong. There is already a capped platform fee for ETFs, and it is increasing, but they have tried to disguise this by quoting it as a lower monthly fee.
    So £3.50 per month for ISA and Dealing account and £10 per month for the SIPP.
    In very small letters underneath the current fees, omitting the fact that it is an increase.
    Not impressed by the sleight of hand.

  • 2532 Passive Pete November 30, 2020, 4:56 pm

    @Vanguardfan – yes I received an email from Vanguard this morning. Here’s a link from my email to read it online (hope it works):

  • 2533 Aidan December 1, 2020, 11:08 am

    Hi @Vanguardfan I happened to be looking at AJBell’s website pdf charges (to compare with Vanguard charges) and noticed changes from 1st January which I didn’t remembering getting an email about. So I phoned them up to get the low down and ask why I hadn’t been informed. I notice they sent an email out a few mins after my call – coincidence? 😉

  • 2534 premierfella December 1, 2020, 12:31 pm

    I only have a modest SIPP still with Youinvest, as I moved everything else away with a previous chares change a few years ago in protest at the exit fee policy they applied.
    The new SIPP cap on shares doesn’t impact me, but the increased custody fee does (disguised as @Vanguardfan says). I for one am pleased to see them moving their exit fees to a fairer position, if only because it means I can now be fully out of Youinvest with only a dealing fee or £9.95 transfer fee for my one Vanguard ETF still there.

  • 2535 David R December 1, 2020, 5:49 pm

    Perhaps a little off topic, but … if any readers of this thread want to understand the wider market, in terms of (i) what platforms there are, and (ii) what is available on each platform. this table from Baillie Gifford (who run SMT) might be useful. https://www.bailliegifford.com/en/uk/individual-investors/how-to-invest/ … then click on ‘platform matrix’ to download it.
    I cant vouch that the content is as up to date and complete as this Monevator thread though …

  • 2536 Genghis December 7, 2020, 11:13 am

    iWeb Account opening fee: not seen it mentioned here but it’s increasing to £100 on 4 Jan 21.

  • 2537 Confused.com December 16, 2020, 2:22 pm

    Hi there,

    I have a decent-sized portfolio (c. 330k) with Fidelity, half in ISAs, half in a general investing account.

    I think at this size, a Halifax flat fee account would be the best bet. I’m paying 0.35% with Fidelity and it’s adding up.

    However, unless I can do an in-specie transfer, I’m very worried about the time out of the market whilst the transfer is going through. A few % loss whilst out of the market would be painful!

    My other option is to transfer to Vanguard, as my funds with Fidelity are generally Vanguard funds, so I can do an in-specie with them. Their 0.15% fee is better than Fidelity, but not as good as the £12.50 flat fee at Halifax.

    Is there any way to make a transfer to Halifax less painful?


  • 2538 Jam December 16, 2020, 10:53 pm

    Not sure why you want to pay any fee. Even with the Vanguard cap on fees it is still £375 I would not want to pay. I have done in specie transfers to Halifax before and they are fine. Just write on the transfer form that you want to do it in-specie.
    I also use ii and they are fine too. Their fee is £10 pcm, but you get a free trade for that too, so I use the Halifax for long term holds and ii for when I am doing top ups to my investments where I am building a position.
    Depending on your situation, either sound better to me.

  • 2539 confused.com December 17, 2020, 9:28 am


    Thanks for the response! For the in-specie, does it matter what funds you are trying to transfer over? I mainly have Vanguard Lifestrayegy 80% and an SP500 fund (HSPX).

    Thanks again.

  • 2540 Jam December 17, 2020, 5:00 pm

    The only way to know absolutely for sure is to telephone them. (Once I was suckered by one company’s website saying they did accept a particular fund, but in pactice they didn’t! – Ggrr).
    The Halifax transfer team’s direct number is 0345 601 5351, I got that off a transfer letter they sent me. I think it will be quicker than their main sharedealing enquiries number.

  • 2541 unfurledgnat December 19, 2020, 8:25 pm

    Hi all, I’m finally looking at opening a S+S ISA. I’m looking at using the vanguard investor platform and I’ve decided on my strategy to invest but am unsure which fund for emerging markets. For example, the slow and steady portfolio emerging markets fund price differs considerably compared to the 2 offered on the vanguard platform. Where can I read up to see why its so different? Or is that just the way vanguard has priced it? Also one of the emerging markets funds available on vanguard is less than a year old, should this have any effect on choosing it or not?

  • 2542 Genghis December 19, 2020, 9:37 pm

    The slow and steady portfolio uses an ishares fund. A fund provider can initially set the price of a fund at whatever they want so of course the Vanguard funds differ.

    On Vanguard investor, in EM they offer:
    – an expensive active EM fund: avoid that
    – an ESG fund. I’m not convinced – see Lars Kroijer’s post a few weeks back
    – an ETF which tracks the FTSE index: so pair this with a Dev world FTSE index for coverage (eg VEVE)
    – an OEIC which tracks MSCI index: there’s no Dev world MSCI index trackers but some which track other bits of the world and from which you couldn’t make a portfolio.

  • 2543 Charlie January 7, 2021, 6:20 pm

    Halifax fees are changing from 1st April:

    Annual fee of £36 for non-SIPP accounts. Dealing cost reduced from £12.50 to £9.50.

  • 2544 Snowman January 8, 2021, 8:29 am

    Thanks Charlie. Although Halifax Sharedealing is my main account I wasn’t aware of this. The change is documented on this page


    Still great value for large portfolios. My concern has always been Halifax would go percentage based, so it’s quite reassuring in one way

  • 2545 platformer January 10, 2021, 7:34 pm

    As far as I can work out, Interactive Brokers is totally free if a) you hold >$100k (>c.£75k) and b) you are purchasing any fee free funds (which includes Vanguard Lifestrategy). You also get access to their FX capability and margin loans against your fund holding. Even if you pay the fees, it works out cheaper than Vanguard Investor if you hold >c.£60k (but no ISA). The table should probably be updated to change ‘n/a’ for dealing funds.

    Also worth adding Fineco (Italian bank) who are low fee, have a very sophisticated platform and seems to come with GBP/EUR current accounts. Their desktop app allows you to pull live prices and other data into Excel.

  • 2546 David R January 11, 2021, 1:03 am

    Interactive Brokers – looks interesting (unless you want the full range of OEICs). Am I correct in thinking that there is thorough investor protection via the US system (FINRA) ?
    Fineco – also looks interesting for investing and or banking but there is nothing much about investor protection. ‘FCA’ but not ‘FSCS’, and no Italian equivalent, correct ?

  • 2547 platformer January 12, 2021, 11:26 am

    Interactive Brokers – you can still buy other funds but subject to the €4.95 fee. Protection is through the US SIPC scheme up to $500,000 as the custodian for IB UK is IB LLC (apart from for metals and OTC CFDs)

    Fineco – they are an Italian regulated entity so you are covered through FITD up to €100,000 for cash and through FNG up to €20,000 for stocks & shares. The disclaimers on their website reference this and you can look up the firm on the relevant websites.

  • 2548 Mike January 17, 2021, 6:48 pm

    T212 doesn’t add to spreads (is it even legal?) and don’t charge fx fees. Nobody forces a person to open a CFD account. Not sure the reason for the disclaimer other than unnecessary worry

  • 2549 The Investor January 18, 2021, 12:29 am

    Interactive Investor said to be about to acquire EQI for £50m:


  • 2550 Hugh W January 18, 2021, 4:07 pm

    Regarding fees.
    I may have missed something but, according to their website, I see Hargreaves Lansdown applies a cap of £45.00 for ISA’s and £200 for SIPPS. Also, no dealing charge for funds and no platform charge for shares.
    So doesn’t that give one the best of both worlds when starting small and growing to a larger portfolio? ie. a mix of percentage and flat fees.
    Please advise,
    Regards, Hugh.
    PS. I am just starting to investigate the world of broker dealing and my pea brain has to be told something repeatedly until it sinks in!
    PPS. Also noted Re FX. HL charge 1% and II charge 1.5% at base levels. But then II seem to be cheaper for dividend reinvestment.
    Blimey! time for a cup of tea!

  • 2551 Hugh W January 18, 2021, 4:17 pm

    Further to fees,
    Also, I don’t think that HL charge for inactivity or for drawdown/transfer – as far as I can see?

  • 2552 Tobeman January 18, 2021, 4:21 pm

    My understanding was HL charge the £45 / £200 capped fee for shares, ETFs, investment trusts, and bonds within the ISA / SIPP. Funds are excluded from the cap, ie. they are charged at the 0.45% annual fee with no cap?

  • 2553 Hugh W January 18, 2021, 6:06 pm

    I think you are right! Thanks. I’ve double checked with HL. They say they don’t make any charge for dealing in funds and in many cases they can negotiate cheaper costs with the fund provider so the products themselves are often better value than elsewhere. They also offer loyalty discounts – apparently – told me to study the notes that go with each fund and keep an eye on their website. All this helps to negate the platform charge. I’ll keep delving and make a decision for long term investing, eventually. I like their app. Very slick and stylish! And no, I don’t work for them ha!
    Regards, Hugh W

  • 2554 Hugh W January 18, 2021, 6:32 pm

    PS. I’m sure I read somewhere that HL margins are around 70%? Maybe I’ll just buy their shares and leave it at that!

  • 2555 David R January 19, 2021, 12:52 am

    Tobeman, you are correct, up to £250k. The 0.45% HL fees for funds start to taper off once you get above £250k.
    Last time I did the sums…
    – £250k invested in funds through HL, you pay about £1,000 pa in fees to HL. vs £0-£240 with II or Iweb (mainly depending whether it is in a SIPP).
    – £1m invested in funds through HL, you pay about £3,000 pa in fees to HL. vs £0-£240 with II or Iweb.
    – £2m+ invested in funds through HL, you pay about £4,000 pa in fees to HL. vs £0-£240 with II or Iweb.
    HL do negotiate some rebates on the fund manager fees, and HL customers get a slice of this, but this perk doesn’t make up for the high fees.

    HL interface and functionality is fine, I’d be happy enough to use them for equities and investment trusts and ETFs, especially in a Trading account, or if my portfolio were under £25k or so. But HL is an expensive place to hold medium or large portfolios of funds.

  • 2556 Paul January 19, 2021, 11:34 am

    Although not strictly covered by the comparison table, I thought it was worth mentioning that Fidelity have recently introduced Junior ISA transfers (at this stage cash transfers only, although they are planning to introduce in specie transfers), and they are waiving the platform fee until the account converts to a full ISA.

  • 2557 Hugh W January 19, 2021, 12:27 pm

    Hi David R,
    Just so I understand this. So if I just used HL for share dealing, etf’s etc, wouldn’t that be cost effective? (No cost for platform) why restrict to under £25k? And wouldn’t the ISA cap of £45 or £200 for SIPP make these costs pale into insignificance as the portfolios grow?

  • 2558 David R January 19, 2021, 6:12 pm

    It depends what is in your “etc.”.
    HL is reasonably cost effective for share dealing and for ETFs.
    HL gets expensive for funds / OEICs, because the £45/£200 cap does NOT apply to funds / OIECs.
    HL’s 0.45% platform fees x 30 years invested equals quite a lot of your money.

  • 2559 Hugh W January 19, 2021, 11:39 pm

    Yes, thanks David R, I understand that.
    I am contemplating making ALL investments in SHARES or ETF’s with HL, within an ISA or SIPP with NO investments that attract the 0.45% ongoing fund fee.
    However, I’ve just been told that certain of these HL funds have had some 5% or ALL initial costs negotiated away. Still trying to get my head around how that works.
    How do initial costs or lack of them affect a passive index UNIT TRUST compared with the structure of an ETF that tracks the same index and consequently, how that affects overall retained value of each Investment, over 10 years, after all costs are accounted for?
    I’m told that for example, if one invested say £1000 per month in a UNIT TRUST you would normally have to pay the approx 5% initial charge on each transaction, each month. But due to HL’s size they are able to eliminate these costs.
    Also, unit trusts costs/profits/losses behave or work differently as markets move up and down, apparently?
    According to an HL cost chart, an index unit trust, in an ISA, can return slightly more, at least for £5000 , assuming 5% growth per year, invested over 5 years. Think the ETF can save more costs for anything over about £10.000 that dilutes the £45 max Isa cost. But In and out dealing costs will be incurred. Not for the UNIT TRUST. And what about dividend reinvestment costs?
    Maybe certain HL actively managed funds are good value, despite the ongoing 0.45% fee, if you don’t have to pay the initial fees on each purchase of units!

  • 2560 Hugh W January 20, 2021, 12:01 am

    PS. I am not sure if certain star managers/funds would agree to waive initial charges? Or be willing to divulge all info HL require to meet their analysis to be included in their short list?
    And I’m overthinking as usual!
    Please excuse my naivety!
    I’m enjoying just trying to understand the intricate world of finance and looking forward to learning more about the companies that it comprises.

  • 2561 David R January 20, 2021, 1:37 am

    Hugh W

    Yes HL is reasonably competitive if you stick to ETFs and shares. Zero funds. Well okay, not much in funds, less than £25k or so in funds, in total. It sounds like your portfolio is going to be 4 figures or lowish 5 figures, in which case the differences in fees might be small. At least until there is some growth (or you get a dollop of extra cash from somewhere).

    The upfront fee for funds – I havent seen a 5%** entry or exit fee for many years. I dont think I’ve ever bought one that charged even 1% upfront or at exit. On any platform. So I wouldnt be all that impressed by an offer of zero upfront fees. I regard that as normal. There might or might not be the usual £5 or £10 flat fee dealing charge, depending on the platform you are using, which could rack up if you are regularly buying in small monthly increments.

    Do your own research. I do use ETFs, but I’m a bit wary of them, with them not being UK domiciled, so there are no FSCS protections if the ETF provider (as opposed to the platform) goes belly up. Unlikely, but best avoided.

    **other than a few VCT offerings, which did give useful upfront tax breaks, but they did rake off 3%-10% in upfront fees and premiums.

  • 2562 David R January 20, 2021, 1:48 am

    Hugh W
    I forgot to say: I’d take the HL shortlist with a pinch of salt. To the extent that I would tend to avoid buying things that are on it.
    You mention ‘intricate’ – it doesnt have to be. Nothing wrong with buying one to five low cost global tracker funds (or ETFs) and holding them indefinitely. Invest £15 or so and read Lars Kroijer’s book, ‘Investing demystified’. It will save you a lot of time and money. If you let it.

  • 2563 Hugh W January 20, 2021, 3:44 pm

    David R
    Thanks for your kind words of wisdom. I will buy the book!
    Given my preference for researching and investing in mainly individual company shares, (and some trackers) can you briefly say why you feel the HG Sipp and ISA accounts are ok for smaller amounts as opposed to larger sums? As they are capped, won’t the fees pale into insignificance as the portfolio, hopefully, grows?
    Also, thanks for your thoughts on ETF’S. I don’t like non uk either!
    I was also wondering about individual foreign shares held in a SIPP. (I know you can’t hold them in an ISA anyway) With Interactive Investor, for instance, you can hold them in a foreign currency account (1.5% FX up to £5k) but with HL, I believe they automatically convert them into sterling (1% FX) in any type of account held. Does this help to ensure FSCS protection too? and/or maybe best held in Sterling for any tax reasons or simplicity? I’m not asking for personal advice. Just interested in your views.
    Regards, Hugh.

  • 2564 Hugh W January 20, 2021, 4:20 pm

    PS. Correction. Individual foreign shares.
    Meant to say – I know you can’t hold them, in a foreign currency, in an ISA
    But they can be held, in a foreign currency, in a SIPP.
    Believe Interactive Investor allows this, but HL automatically converts. No currency accounts. Guess HL, given their resources, must have a reason for that?
    And I’m thinking about FSCS protection and simplicity too!

  • 2565 David R January 22, 2021, 12:16 am

    https://monevator.com/foreign-shares-in-an-isa/ might help (i assume it is still current)
    yes platforms are a bit reluctant to hold your bits and pieces of cash in lots of currencies.
    go easy on the picking-winners … at least until you’ve read Lars’ book!

  • 2566 Hugh W January 22, 2021, 1:38 am

    Thanks for putting up with me Mr David R Sir!
    Before I kick off with Lars, or take any further action, I must read a book I have in my hand right now. It’s called “The Intelligent Investor” by Benjamin Graham. Also, newly acquired, is a very thick tome entitled “The Snowball” – Warren Buffett and the Business of Life – by Alice Schroeder.
    Having said that, you have me intrigued, I’ll search out Lars on Amazon sooner rather than later!
    I know I won’t be able to emulate these revered gentlemen’s achievements , but I am hugely interested to learn about their philosophies and if I can take away just a few things to remember for the rest of my life, that would be a wonderful thing. Likewise, I will not forget your well chosen words of council.
    All the best,
    Regards, Hugh H.

  • 2567 Hugh W January 22, 2021, 9:50 am

    PS. Found this snippet by Monevator 2010 re withholding tax/tax generally and SIPP interesting, especially re funds/ETF’s domiciled in Ireland:

    Avoid the whole palaver

    SIPPs qualify for a zero rate of withholding tax from certain countries including the US.

    However, not all brokers structure their SIPPs to enjoy this freebie so check with your broker first if the extra 15% off is a deal-breaker.

    ETF and fund investors can also duck withholding tax on their dividends by investing in the right funds.

    Funds/ETFs domiciled in Ireland and Luxembourg do not levy withholding tax on dividends paid to UK investors. You only pay regular UK rates of tax, or nothing at all if your investment is tucked away in an ISA or SIPP.


  • 2568 Tom February 3, 2021, 3:29 am

    Anybody have a Jarvis/ShareDeal Active SIPP? The pension is said to be operated by Gaudi. Have you ever managed to speak with G on 01722 713 313 (or any other number)?

  • 2569 Tim Clements February 20, 2021, 11:29 pm

    Hi there, I’m looking into starting a slow and steady portfolio. Is there any reason why I couldn’t use a platform like Trading212’s ISA invest account to build and manage a portfolio? As the there are no fees apart from the initial spread, it seems like a option, but Monevator doesn’t appear to recommend it. I’m totally new to this so have probably missed something.

  • 2570 Tobeman February 22, 2021, 10:21 am

    @Tim – I don’t know enough about Trading212 but I suspect they just allow you to invest in listed securities. Whereas the Slow & Steady portfolio here is a variety of open-ended funds, and from looking at Trading212 briefly they don’t support that asset type.

  • 2571 Tim Clements February 23, 2021, 11:49 am

    @Tobeman. Thanks for your feedback. As far as I can see, though, you can invest in ETFs too. For example, I found Vanguard’s FTSE All-World UCITS ETF (VWRL) and U.K. Gilt UCITS ETF (VGOV) EFTs in their platform. So it looks as though you can implement Monevator’s example “Keep It Simple” portfolio. And the platform is fee free. The platform is very similar to FreeTrade’s platform, but with the benefit they don’t charge for the ISA. FreeTrade charge £3 per month for their ISA. So it looks like a good option, but I’d be interested to hear what people in the Monevator community think. Sounds almost too good to be true. Thanks,

  • 2572 Mr Toby Hucker February 23, 2021, 12:01 pm

    I’d imagine that is fine. Apologies if crossed-wires, you mentioned Slow and Steady which is a portfolio the team here update quarterly as a feature – not sure if you were specifically referring to that!
    If the ETFs are avaialble in Trading212 then great!

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