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Our updated guide to help you find the best online broker

Okay, UK investors, after taking the pain of creating a whopping great comparison guide to the UK’s leading online brokers, we’ve once again returned to the battlefield to fully update it.

Eating a bag of rusty nails water would have been more fun, but it would not have produced a quick and easy overview of all the main execution-only investment services.

Fund supermarkets, platforms, discount brokers, call ’em what you will – we’ve stripped ’em down to their undies for you to eyeball over a cup of tea and your favourite tranquilizers.

Online brokers laid bare in our comparison table

Who’s the best broker?

It’s impossible to say. There are too many subtle differences in the offers. The UK’s brokers occupy more niches than the mammal family, and while I know which one is best for me, I can’t know which one is right for you.

What I have done is laser focus the comparison onto the most important factor in play: Cost.

An execution-only broker is not on this Earth to hold anyone’s hand. Yes, we want their website to work, we’d prefer them to not screw us over, go bust or send us to the seventh circle of call centre hell… These things we take for granted.

So customer service metrics are not included in this table. It’s purely a bare-knuckle contest of brute cost for services rendered.

Why should investors flay costs as if they were the tattooed agents of darkness? Because if – as the FCA predicted – you will see an annual after-inflation return of 2.5% on your portfolio for the next decade, then the last thing you need is to leak another 1% in portfolio management charges.

This makes picking the best value broker a key battleground for all investors.

Using the table

I’ve decided the main UK brokers fall into three main camps. These are:

  • Fixed fee brokers – Charge one price for platform services regardless of the size of your assets. In other words, they might charge you £100 per year whether your portfolio is worth £1,000 or £1 million. Generally, if you’ve got more than £25,000 stashed away then you definitely want to look at this end of the market. Bear in mind that fixed fee doesn’t mean you won’t also be tapped up for dealing monies and a laundry list of other charges.
  • Percentage fee brokers – This is where the wealthy need to be careful. These guys charge a percentage of your assets, say 0.3% per year. For a portfolio of £1,000 that would amount to a fee of £3. On £1 million you’d be paying £3,000. Small investors should generally use percentage fee brokers, but even surprisingly moderate rollers are better off with fixed fees. Many percentage fee brokers use fee caps and tiered charges to limit the damage but the price advantage still favours the fixed fee outfits in most cases.
  • Share dealing platforms – Platforms that suit investors who want to deal solely in shares and ETFs. Sites like X-O and friends fill this brief.

Choosing the right broker needn’t be any more painful than ensuring it offers the investments you want and then running a few numbers on your portfolio.

The final point you need to know is that this table’s vitality relies on crowd-sourcing. I review the whole thing every three months, but it can be permanently up-to-date if you contact us or leave a comment every time you find an inaccuracy, fresh information, or a platform you think should be added.

Thanks to your efforts as much as ours, our broker comparison table has become an invaluable resource for UK investors.

Take it steady,

The Accumulator

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{ 270 comments… add one }
  • 201 David February 18, 2018, 6:17 pm

    Hi All, 3 years ago after finding this site (a little late 52)i invested a lump sum in VLS 60 and also 40% with Iweb in an Isa, and both have done well. So we’ll I’ve have inadvertently gone way over the FSA compensation limit, I would like to do the same for my wife using the same fund so Q1. How do I reduce my own fund and transfer profits to my wife to be in line with FSA also Q2 is it best to remain with Iweb or invest directly with Vanguard, apologies for length but would appreciate help.

  • 202 The Accumulator February 18, 2018, 6:54 pm

    Hi David, you sell some of your units, withdraw the cash, then deposit same cash in your wife’s account and buy. To save faff, it would be worth checking with iweb if you can link your accounts and transfer the cash directly.

    The answer to Q2 depends on how big your portfolio is and how often you trade. I’m purely thinking from a cost perspective. iWeb is hard to beat if your portfolio is worth mid five figures plus and you rarely trade.

  • 203 David February 19, 2018, 4:56 pm

    Thanks The Accumulator, just a thought with the F.C.S. Compensation limit at 50k what do people with a few 100k do which these days doesn’t a great amount or do I worry too much

  • 204 David February 19, 2018, 5:28 pm

    Apologies I should explain after toiling away in the same wearisome (especially last 5) employment for 37 years I am due to call it a day in the next 2. Hooray!! The public can be twits. Anyway I hope to be in the above category with approximately another 50k total 150k but what to do about those limits? As I only have one wife.
    Thanks

  • 205 David February 20, 2018, 3:01 pm

    Apologies for my last text a12 hrs shift turned into nearly 16. Once you have maxed out on compensation limits for my wife and myself (Isa) is it a matter of finding a different platform and fund to continue investing, I imagine there must be many people with more to invest than the compensation limits. I wonder if I worry a little to much. Thanks.

  • 206 Gaz February 20, 2018, 10:02 pm

    @ The Accumulator
    Thanks for the link! I guess I fall under Young Buck, so I’ll look into Vanguard’s All-World tracker. That said, my gut is telling me to stick to Lifestrategy as I’m not confident in my ability to rebalance so maybe I’ll think about going up to from LS60% to LS80 or 100%

  • 207 David Hollinshead July 24, 2018, 9:29 am

    AJ Bell Youinvest are a percentage broker but have a cap of £30 (on ETFs, ITs, shares, and bonds). That makes them cheaper than the majority of fixed fee brokers! Best of both worlds (unless you want funds)?

  • 208 Pete July 26, 2018, 4:42 pm

    Not sure about the dealing costs entry for Fidelity or Cavendish online. I went through Cavendish to set up a Fidelity Fundsnetwork pension, and there were no charges for regular investment. I set up my investment wishes – proportions into each of three funds, and the money went in there each month, with no charges other than the already mentiond 0.2% platform fee.

  • 209 The Accumulator July 27, 2018, 1:46 pm

    Hi Pete, the £1.50 refers to regular investing in ETFs, but thank you for pointing that out. I need to make that clearer on the table.

  • 210 REBECCA EDWARDS July 28, 2018, 5:52 pm

    I am trying to transfer my ISA from Interactive Investor to Vanguard dues to the fees difference but II claim it does not exist! Hope they can sort it as it’s nearly £5,000!

  • 211 Malcolm Beaton July 30, 2018, 11:53 pm

    Just a thought
    In the Comparison site for Platforms-would it be possible to include the number of clients and financial size of the business
    In these time when safety or viability of platforms is starting to precede cheapness of operation -it would help us to better determine the Quality of the Platform
    xxd09

  • 212 Matthew February 8, 2019, 1:02 pm

    Just saw a sneaky advert for vitality’s isa which apparently gives a bonus of up to 15% over 25 years, of which there is a bonus every 5 years and the first of which is 2%
    The catch – you have to be invested in vitality’s funds to get it – many of which have charged around 1% despite vitality saying they are in partnership with vanguard
    The cost of the isa itself was i think 0.31% if you use their expensive vitality funds, 0.6% for other funds, and apparently zero if you somehow gain platinum status with vitality points, if that’s realistic, so overall not really a competitive product even among % brokers

  • 213 Neil Richardson February 10, 2019, 2:23 pm

    Hi folks, Does anyone know if there are any brokers out there which will allow a single view of multiple accounts eg the 2x ISAs and 2x SIPPs of a married couple viewed as a single consolidated work . I can of course do this myself or using an online portfolio tool but having this facility which take away some of the work and also allow meaningful use of any portfolio analysis tools. Thanks, Neil

  • 214 Andy P February 15, 2019, 5:06 pm

    Hi
    I am new to the investment world and planning to make my first investment. I have read a lot on this site but still have a few questions. I would highly appreciate if someone can shed the light.
    -I am not planning to make frequent transactions, but I intend to invest significant (for me) amounts in ISA. I am interested in using low cost brokers and wanted to know how reliable are Iweb and X-O?
    -what are the chances of low cost brokers going bust and what happens to my investments in this case?
    Thanks for answer
    Andy

  • 215 The Accumulator February 16, 2019, 4:00 pm

    Hi Andy, I’ve used iweb for several years and not had a problem. My needs are pretty basic though – the occasional trade once in the blue moon. iweb are part of the Halifax group. See the forum links on the broker table if you want to ask these questions of a wider crowd. No-one can tell you the chances of a broker going bust. Here’s the facts on the compensation scheme: https://monevator.com/investor-compensation-scheme/

  • 216 Matthew March 13, 2019, 3:00 pm

    Thank you for maintaining these tables, nowhere else that you can easily find on tinternet does it well, ie not telling you details until you click through

    Would it be possible to know which ones allow in specie transfers so im not out of the market? As that alone puts me off switching current % fee broker to vanguard and then later from vanguard to a fixed fee

    The halifax one could be a good place to park lump sums, ie one year build up with a % broker and the next year transfer to halifax, rinse and repeat

  • 217 Theo April 8, 2019, 1:29 pm

    Interactive Investor just announced that they are upping there fees a bit:
    https://www.moneyobserver.com/news/interactive-investor-introduces-new-monthly-fee-model

  • 218 StuartB April 25, 2019, 6:24 pm

    Actually the ii fees are going up quite a lot – from £22.50 a quarter to £39.96 (and some other charges are changing – e.g. non UK residents will now have to pay an additional £3.99 a month).
    Works out OK for active investing as they are reducing their trade fees, but much more expensive for passive.
    AFAIK (I have all their other emails), we were not notified about this (I have to assume I must have accidentally deleted two emails – one for me and one to my wife) as I cannot believe that they would not tell customers.
    Really frustrating having only opened the SIPPs last year – fortunately they don’t have exit fees so it’s off we go.

  • 219 StuartB April 25, 2019, 6:30 pm

    And ii’s web-site still shows the existing fees with no mention on the page that this is changing from June. Seriously underhand.

  • 220 StuartB April 25, 2019, 6:33 pm

    Sorry – maths wrong – new quaterly fee is £29.97 not £39.96 – couldn’t edit.

  • 221 Fremantle April 30, 2019, 1:31 pm

    Great to see the table updated again.
    What’s happened to the comparison tool? Is that still going?

  • 222 The Investor April 30, 2019, 1:58 pm

    @Fremantle — Unfortunately Broker Compare (the guys behind the tool) have shut it down.

  • 223 The Rhino April 30, 2019, 2:14 pm

    Inspired by Ermine’s recent posts could I propose a ‘Flexible’ column or note for the ISA related rows?
    heres my tuppence (if there’s a ball that needs to get rolling):
    IWEB no
    HL no
    Share Centre yes
    Charles Stanley yes

  • 224 The Investor April 30, 2019, 2:40 pm

    @The Rhino — Another: Selftrade stocks and shares ISA is now Flexible.

  • 225 David I May 2, 2019, 9:05 am

    A really useful table. HSBC GIC actually offers almost 400 funds from 20+ fund managers.
    Unfortunately it doesn’t offer the full range of HSBC index trackers.
    One feature that I have found important is whether the platform offers a dividend re-investment facility. HSBC doesn’t, so unless you use accumulation units where available (a good move) you can finish up with relatively small amounts of cash that you need to top up to the £100 min. I moved from HSBC GIC to HL – initially more expensive but now I that I use only ITs and ETFs the monthly fee is capped. Obviously you still ge the dealing charge but regular saving is pretty cost effective.
    Keep up the good work.

  • 226 Rosie September 3, 2019, 2:03 pm

    We’re shifting from funds to investment trusts because we’re with Hargreaves Lansdown and they have a cap on charges for ITs but not for funds.

    It’s not simple even within brokers.

  • 227 McFishcake September 3, 2019, 9:52 pm

    Any reason the Lloyds annual platform fee has jumped from £40 to £120 ? As far as I can see it is still £20 every six months and the standard trading account admin fee waived if you have also have an ISA account so still £40 pa for most.

  • 228 Maximus September 3, 2019, 10:42 pm

    Thanks TA for all your rusty water eating(?)
    I also find this comparison site is useful: http://www.comparefundplatforms.com/home

  • 229 Money Mountaineer September 4, 2019, 9:27 am

    @ Maximus – many thanks for that link! Even with TA’s excellent table I struggle to feel 100% confident I’m making the right selection – but that comparison tool has confirmed that my calculations are correct. Finally feeling confident I’ll be jumping in the right direction I can wave a (not terribly fond) farewell to the fees at HL.

    Cheers, MoMo

  • 230 The Rhino September 4, 2019, 9:33 am

    @MM – funnily enough I’m on my way back to HL after a few years hiatus. HL is pretty attractive on a cost/service basis but (strictly) only for a share/ETF/IT portfolio..

  • 231 Money Mountaineer September 4, 2019, 11:37 am

    @ The Rhino – I’m a strictly passive, ISA-based, low dealing, trickle-in accumulation phase, self-balancing funds kinda guy – climbing my money mountain (okay, currently a hillock) one step at a time – and recently passed the £35K threshold, so time to switch to a flat fee platform. And that now looks like it will be with Interactive Investor.

    HL were great while I was taking my first tentative steps into investing, and with a small portfolio, but now feels like the right time to chase low costs as the top priority. Sound’s like you have a slightly different style, for which the HL platform brings benefits.

    MoMo

  • 232 The Rhino September 4, 2019, 12:22 pm

    @MM – I use a few different brokers for different things, was 6 but now pared down to 4. They’ve all got their pros and cons to match against what you’re trying to achieve, but a bit of variety is also good from a diversification perspective in case one of them falls over in a heap.

  • 233 Mr Optimistic September 4, 2019, 5:04 pm

    Sad to see ATS (Alliance) disappear now they are being absorbed into ii. Have had a pep/ISA with them since the 80s. I use/ have used ATS, ii, Halifax share dealing and HL and haven’t had a moment’s problem with any of them. Biggest whinge is the investments offered. This can be surprisingly limited though HL and ii are the best. ATS made me sign as a sophisticated investor to buy a gold ETC: they all seem to take a different view.

  • 234 Maximus September 4, 2019, 10:34 pm

    @MoMo – Glad you found the link useful and well done for escaping the clutches of HL; I did the same after they massively hiked fees for passive funds several years ago. I’m with Interactive Investor now, but may soon jump ship to iWeb.
    Good luck!

  • 235 Vanguardfan September 5, 2019, 6:53 am

    Yes it seems the choice for large fund portfolios grows ever smaller. I was with iWeb, ATS and Youinvest (had to switch my funds to ETFs on the latter some years back). I don’t really want to be transferred to II as I previously moved away from them due to poor customer service. I’ve concluded that it is time to try out the legendary HL, although this will mean switching another large tranche out of funds to ETFs.
    Anyone else found a trouble free alternative for fund portfolios? If only we could clone iWeb (oh, wait….)

  • 236 Vanguardfan September 5, 2019, 7:16 am

    That compare funds site looks like it’s the comparison tool which was previously sited here. Ah well, it’s still useful….

    It tells me to look into x-o – as long as I switch to ETFs. Any feedback from users here? For a SIPP with infrequent trading.

  • 237 The Accumulator September 7, 2019, 3:48 pm

    @ McFishcake – love the name. Reason Lloyds jumped is cos I misread the charges. Must drink less while updating the table 😉
    My apologies for the confusion. The table has been corrected now.

  • 238 Mr Optimistic September 11, 2019, 9:55 pm

    For info wrt ATS, I have been given a date of 14 October for transition to the ii platform.

  • 239 cat793 January 1, 2020, 6:56 pm

    I have a SIPP with AJ Bell and a trading account and ISA with Interactive Investor. I would say that Interactive Investor is a low quality budget option whereas AJ Bell is far better quality.
    – when you log in to ii it only asks for an id and password (which can be very simple) whereas AJ Bell asks for id, password and a security question. Very poor security with ii considering people may have much of their wealth administered from the platform.
    – the user interface on AJ Bell is vastly superior. ii looks like a student project gone wrong and glitches out a lot of the time.
    – worst of all from my perspective is that ii does not show you all the investment options you actually have when you research funds, etfs etc while showing options you actually cannot access. A good recent example is when I decided to invest in a FTSE 250 index. I wanted to choose an accumulation option as I don’t want to have to pay to reinvest the dividends every quarter. The cheapest option was shown as the HSBC FTSE 250 Index S Acc fund @ 0.08%. However when I tried to buy this fund ii told me I couldn’t. So I moved on to the next cheapest which was Vanguard FTSE 250 UCITS ETF VMID @0.1%. However this is a distribution ETF. When I actually got to the buy screen on ii I noticed another Vanguard ETF was listed – VMIG. This is the same as VMID but an accumulation fund. I bought this as it saves me having to pay to reinvest the dividends through a DRIP. Why is this ETF not listed with all the other Vanguard ETFs when you search for FTSE 250 ETFs? My cynical side tells me it is because ii likes to hide the accumulation fund and try and bamboozle customers into buying the distribution fund so they can collect the DRIP charges. It is either that or the ii website is rubbish. My confidence in ii has been undermined by these glitches. AJ Bell had none of these problems (and it was researching on AJ Bell that revealed VMIG to me). Anyone else had issues like this?

  • 240 Andy March 3, 2020, 1:43 pm

    > when you log in to ii it only asks for an id and password (which can be very simple) whereas AJ Bell asks for id, password and a security question. Very poor security with ii considering people may have much of their wealth administered from the platform.

    Asking for two different passwords isn’t any more secure than asking for one password. It is disappointing that brokers aren’t supporting 2 factor authentication via TOTP, app, or SMS.

  • 241 Snowman March 4, 2020, 3:01 pm

    Interactive Investor have introduced an offer for those opening a new SIPP by 3rd April 2020, to waive their additional £120pa SIPP fee until April 2021. So you pay the main platform charge of £119.88pa (£9.99pm) but not the additional SIPP charge until April 2021.

    Vanguard still potentially cheaper during the period to April 2021 for SIPPs below about 80K in value, but interesting development all the same.

    https://www.ii.co.uk/ii-accounts/sipp#offer-terms

  • 242 Ken March 4, 2020, 4:37 pm

    @Andy. Not sure who else does, but AJ Bell does support app-based 2 factor auth:

    https://www.youinvest.co.uk/faq/how-do-i-set-two-factor-authentication

  • 243 MrOptimistic March 4, 2020, 7:26 pm

    I probably missed it, or am being dim, but what does ‘ unrestricted’ mean as in ‘ unrestricted fund portfolio’?
    Also, doesn’t the II sipp qualify for such a statement?
    Thanks for the work.

  • 244 Merlotman March 5, 2020, 3:41 pm

    Whilst I very much appreciate all the hard work that has gone in here I don’t quite understand what all the fuss is about. Maybe I am missing something? I and my wife are with HL and both have SIPPs and ISAs. We don’t invest in funds as there is plenty of choice in the ETF space for passives. Consequently we are charged 200 each pa for our SIPPs and 45 each pa for our ISAs 490 pa in all. That represents charges of between 3 and 4 bps I.e. 0.03% p.a. There are no additional fees for drawdown. I think my time is better spent worrying about asset allocation (and the lifetime allowance) but would be good if someone could put me straight.

  • 245 The Investor March 5, 2020, 4:32 pm

    @Merlotman — I don’t think you’re missing anything. Rather, you’re in a good spot. You’re even using the right vehicles for that platform, and with an evidently large portfolio your ongoing fees are indeed very small.

    However this website isn’t called Merlotman-evator. 😉 Not everyone is in the same position as you.

    If you were transitioning from years with a high fee wealth advisor and a clutch of opaque active funds and you were moving towards a self-managed passive portfolio, then choosing the right broker (and monitoring your choice over time as your portfolio grows) is an important part of the picture.

    Also we only do 2-3 table updates a year, which is approximately 1% of the annual output of Monevator, so your definition of “all the fuss” may be different from mine! 🙂

  • 246 Merlotman March 5, 2020, 6:39 pm

    Thanks TI
    I hope I didn’t sound pompous – I just wanted to make sure I wasn’t missing any hidden charges. And I can assure you that where I am today has been very much down to luck with my active investing, hence my increasing interest in passive on the basis I am soon to mean revert!

  • 247 The Investor March 5, 2020, 10:19 pm

    @Merlotman — Haha, no worries at all. Sometimes some people forget that we have to write for a huge range of people (including first/one-time visitors to the site) so it’s a bit of a nightmare pleasing everyone. Just wanted to restate that I suppose, instead of looking at my portfolio shrinking by the hour… 😉

  • 248 ince March 6, 2020, 11:00 am

    Hi, I what would be the best broker for a £20k stocks and shares ISA holding the Index funds mentioned on this site and £20k holding various other funds.

  • 249 Algernond March 6, 2020, 11:34 am

    Hi. w.r.t the Vanguard SIPP, I received a mail from them this week that they would accept in-speccie transfers (of Vanguard funds of course) by the end of July this year.

  • 250 The Accumulator March 7, 2020, 1:29 pm

    @ Mr Optimistic – Unrestricted means the platform doesn’t limit your product choice in the way that, say, Vanguard and HSBC does. I see I haven’t updated the notes underneath the table so I need to do that. Also, Unrestricted may not be the best choice of words as every platform has its limitations somewhere along the line. Any feedback on this would be great. I need a word that alerts people to platforms that limit your choice to:

    a) their products only e.g. Vanguard
    b) a quite limited list of products e.g. HSBC, Fidelity / Freetrade / Trading 212 ETFs.

    Yes, ii are unrestricted but they currently don’t get the nod in terms of ‘best buy’ platform so I don’t mention it. Same with all other platforms that don’t fit my ‘best buy’ criteria.

    @ Snowman and Algernond – thank you for the tip offs!

    @ Merlotman – you can do better! Especially if you trade a fair bit. But I’m sure you have bigger fish to fry given your cost base.

    @ Andy and Ken – HL don’t support two-factor authentication which is surprising.

    @ Ince – take a look at Vanguard and Cavendish and others near the top of the percentage fee table.

  • 251 MrOptimistic March 7, 2020, 2:21 pm

    @TA. Thanks for that. For a sipp portfolio above £50k ii still looks ok compared to say iweb.

  • 252 Mark March 12, 2020, 12:03 pm

    Disappointed to discover Fidelity don’t offer a stop loss on SIPP investments. I assume the same in other accounts.

  • 253 Kraggash July 14, 2020, 5:55 pm

    AJ Bell Youinvest exit charges look VERY out of step with the market now. £25 per holding, and NO cap.

  • 254 Gizzard July 14, 2020, 6:23 pm

    I wonder if a useful addition might be to also take into account the interest rate that the platform pays on uninvested cash. It might complicate matters too much, but I have quite a large cash allocation (relatively risk averse and haven’t decided on a suitable bond strategy) and my current platform pays 0% (maybe they all do).

  • 255 MrOptimistic July 15, 2020, 6:03 am

    I wonder if a new flat fee provider will ever turn up. I have a lot with II, owing to them hovering up ATS, near enough 7 figures. I am not overly concerned about security but it’s a strong factor against putting any more in. More concern is the potential for increased fees if competition is restricted. Their service has been fine though.

  • 256 Vanguardfan July 15, 2020, 8:35 am

    @MrO, probably not, would be my guess.
    Flat fees on fund holdings now more or less down to II and the IWeb/Halifax/Lloyds label, of which iWeb is the cheapest.
    The other way to get kind of flat fees is to avoid funds, and use YouInvest or Hargreaves Lansdown. The only one of these I haven’t tried yet is HL. I have three brokers and more or less happy with them. Was uneasy about the II transfer due to previous bad experience, but so far so ok.

  • 257 Gizzard July 15, 2020, 3:32 pm

    This table would be great as a spreadsheet, where you input the amount you’ve got in funds, ETF’s/ITs/shares and cash and it shows you how much each platform would cost.

  • 258 Cliffo July 15, 2020, 9:15 pm

    I agree with Gizzard. I feel as though I have a straight yes or no answer, given my holding amount, type and regularity of new investments, but… man it’s fiddly to work out which is definitely the best for me.

  • 259 The Investor July 15, 2020, 11:42 pm

    @Cliffo @Gizzard — We have had such a tool in the past, and have also explored spreadsheets. The tool was pretty good — it was provided by a third-party called Broker Compare who we worked in conjunction with. Ultimately they had to close down because they couldn’t make any (/enough) money to cover the costs etc.

    Anyway, the tools/sheets come with their own issues, such as assumptions built-in but hard to surface (or not disclosed at all) or certain factors that are relevant for some platforms not being featured because they’re not a factor at all with the others.

    Ultimately nothing beats doing the sums for yourself! This article is not going to frighten the horses, but it might be useful if you’ve not read it:

    https://monevator.com/work-out-cheapest-platform/

  • 260 Art July 16, 2020, 8:50 am

    Won’t http://www.comparefundplatforms.com/ do what Gizzard and Cliffo have suggested?

  • 261 LALILULELO July 16, 2020, 10:40 am

    My Dad recently passed away leaving everything to my Mum and we’re in the process of making things more simple. Dad had a good amount invested in many different funds on multiple platforms through his IFA but I do not sip from the well of active management and am considering moving some of the ISA accounts to Vanguard. In a perfect world everything (even the SIPPs) would be transferred to Vanguard and split between VWRL and the Global Bond Fund but I’m now having to think of the FCA protection limit (something I’ve not had to consider thus far). There are a few products that I’m happy for the IFA to continue to deal with but I can’t think of any reason the active funds shouldn’t be moved. Am I missing anything? I’d be grateful to hear of other posters’ experiences if they’ve been through anything similar. Similarly, has anyone used an IFA to provide anything that a retail investor cannot access that has proven useful? Thanks in advance

  • 262 Ruby July 16, 2020, 3:30 pm

    @ LALILULELO – I recently moved my elderly parents to a two fund portfolio + deposit account arrangement. They draw a fixed amount from the deposit account each month, it gets topped up with dividends as and when they’re paid and then, every year or so I’ll top up the deposit account from capital, and re balance at the same time. I partly did it for convenience but also because it meant I could stop thinking about yield.I went for VWRL and the ishares aggregate bond – AGBP and both are held at Hargreaves Lansdown in ISA’s – £45 per year each. I don’t really like HL, and think they were/are immensely greedy with their best buy lists and Woodford promoting malarkey, not to mention the platform charge on funds, but the service is very good and the platform excellent. As for IFA’s, I suspect you’ll learn most of what you need to know by ferreting around on this fine site.

  • 263 LALILULELO July 16, 2020, 5:06 pm

    Thanks Ruby, I haven’t looked into AGBP so I’ll put it on the list. If you don’t mind me asking, did you have any qualms only using HL (vis a vis the FCA protection) and only the 2 funds or is the perceived wisdom that the collapse of Vanguard, iShares and HL is far too remote to worry about such things? And you’re right about this fine site, I might have to dig through the fantastic Mark Meldon articles again in particular!

  • 264 Gizzard July 16, 2020, 5:32 pm

    I don’t know whether it takes account of interest payments (if any) on any cash held. But I’ll take a closer look.

  • 265 Gizzard July 16, 2020, 5:37 pm

    I use HL. I believe you only need to concern yourself with any cash you hold with them. But even then I believe (check for yourself though) that they split the money between 5 different banks so in theory, you would be covered by the FCA for up to five times £85,000 (£425,000). Any funds you hold on the platform are ringfenced in your name and would be unaffected if either/both HL and Vanguard went bust. Although you’d have trouble accessing them for a while.

  • 266 Ruby July 16, 2020, 7:15 pm

    @ LALILULELO – I haven’t given it much thought and the amounts exceed the compo anyway. As far as cash is concerned I believe it is as @ Gizzard says; as far as investments are concerned, I think the likelihood of HL, Vanguard, iShares going bust having trousered investor money to be slim enough not to really have to worry about it. I’d be more bothered about an IT melt down but suspect/hope that would just affect accessibility for a while. I imagine @ The Investor or @ The Accumulator have written about this somewhere and both are much better informed than me.

  • 267 Sevenyearplanner July 17, 2020, 12:18 am

    Not sure if this has been mentioned elsewhere but a decent discount in platform fees applies if you land a job with HL, however minor. The big win is that this discount applies for perpetuity even if only employed for a six month contract, and applies to all “connected” family members with an account. I estimate this discount will be worth in excess of £150,000 over our collective predicted lifetimes, which is nice. It certainly helps if you live near Bristol though…

  • 268 benjmeyer July 17, 2020, 2:21 pm

    Trading 212 have a really great new feature (albeit shamelessly copied from M1 finance in the US). This is their investment ‘pie’. You set up your pie by choosing your instruments, setting the desired % allocation and can then automate regular investments into the pie. You can then rebalance at the click of a button at whatever frequency you choose. you can also set up multiple pies for different financial goals and objectives. It’s something I’ve been waiting for in the UK ever since I first saw the functionality in the Us broker M1 Finance (why are our UK brokers so slow to innovate??). Alongside zero commission trading, this makes Trading 212 a compelling option. I’m just a bit concerned about investing too much money with them initially as, even though they are FCA authorised, their parent company is registered in Bulgaria.

  • 269 thibault salomon July 22, 2020, 3:22 pm

    I currently use IG’s smart portfolio – the fee is capped at £250/year so it is worthwhile for large investments…They offer a number of portfolios based on your risk appetite and do the re-balancing for you (so not 100% passive)…They’ve partnered with Blackrock so all the investments within the portfolios are ishares ETFs. I’ve only been with them for 6 months but I’m very happy with them overall…

  • 270 Tom November 17, 2020, 2:15 pm

    Don’t suppose anyone here knows of other brokers who offer corporate/company brokerage accounts?

    I know of ii, HL (though they’ve temporarily suspended new accounts due to the ‘vid) and IG. I’m also aware that Vanguard offer an institutional service for higher rollers than my little company. Thanks in advance.

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