Hargreaves Lansdown vs Fidelity – Which Is Better For Investing?

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At Generation Money our purpose is to help you make better financial decisions. All of our articles are independently written and/or edited by finance professionals and adhere to strict editorial guidelines. This post may contain links which, if clicked, could result in a payment to the site. These links never impact our editorial policy and all rankings and product recommendations remain unbiased. For more details, read how this site is financed.

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This comparison review looks at two of the big names of the UK investing scene, Hargreaves Lansdown vs Fidelity.

I’ll be comparing Fidelity and Hargreaves Lansdown against a number of metrics to see which comes out on top. This includes investment options, portfolio performance, ethical offerings, products and, of course, fees.

Expensive fees can massively eat into your returns over time. So, as an experienced investor and a Chartered Accountant I know how important it is to balance costs against returns!

Read on for my full Hargreaves Lansdown vs Fidelity comparison, or use the links below to jump straight to a particular section.

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Hargreaves Lansdown vs Fidelity: At A Glance

Here’s my overview of Hargreaves Lansdown vs Fidelity in case you don’t want to read the whole comparison. 

The table below looks at the key features compared against each other.

Hargreaves LansdownFidelity
Fees / Platform ChargesHolding funds:
Up to £250,000: 0.45%
£250,000 – £1m: 0.25%
£1m – £2m: 0.10%
£2m+: 0%

Holding shares:
Fund & Share Account: no charge
Stocks & Shares ISA: 0.45% (capped at £45)
SIPP & Junior SIPP: 0.45% (capped at £200)

No fees for Junior ISAs

See Fees section below for more, inc. dealing fees
Under £25,000: 0.35% with a regular savings plan, or £90 without one
£25,000 – £250,000: 0.35%
£250,000 – £1m: 0.20%, plus you will qualify for Fidelity’s Wealth Management Service
£1m+: 0.20% on the first £1m, 0% above £1m. Max. fee of £2,000

Note that the % fee applies to your total investment, e.g. if you have £300k, the whole £300k is charged at 0.20%

No fees for Junior ISAs or Junior SIPPs
Minimum Investment£1 to open Fund & Share Account (GIA), £100 minimum investment for funds

£100 for ISA & SIPP, unless regularly depositing £25+ per month
£1,000 or £25 per month minimum for regular savings plan
ProductsStocks & Shares: ISA, JISA, LISA

Fund & Share Account / GIA

SIPP (Pension), Junior SIPP

Cash ISA, Active Savings

Personal Financial Advice

Foreign Currency Exchange
Stocks & Shares: ISA & JISA 

General Investment Account (GIA), Joint GIA (up to 4 people)

SIPP (Pension), Junior SIPP

Cash Savings

Personal Financial Advice
Wealth Management
Ready-Made Portfolios41 Easy Invest option (Fidelity Index World Fund)
Ready-Made Portfolio Fees0.92%-0.99% on Hargreaves Lansdown’s 4 actively managed portfolios

Platform fees above apply on top
0.1% on Fidelity Index World Fund but this is not actively managed

Platform fees above apply on top
Ethical Portfolios/FundsAccess to ESG fundsAccess to ESG funds
Other Portfolios/FundsHargreaves Lansdown Select
Wealth Shortlist
Fidelity Select 50 Balanced Fund
DIY PortfolioYesYes
Share DealingYesYes
FSCS ProtectionYes (except funds outside the UK)Yes (except funds outside the UK)
Trustpilot Rating4.24.0

What You Need To Know

Best For:
  • Hargreaves Lansdown is generally the cheaper platform for holding shares, whether that’s in an ISA or a GIA
  • Wider range of products than Fidelity, including a Cash ISA and Stocks & Shares LISA
  • More investment options than Fidelity, including corporate and government bonds
  • More modern and user friendly app and online platform
Fidelity logo
Best For:
  • Generally, cheaper to hold funds with Fidelity than Hargreaves Lansdown 
  • No charges at all for its Junior SIPP, unlike with Hargreaves Lansdown
  • Lower dealing fees than Hargreaves Lansdown unless you make more than 20 trades per month
  • It offers joint accounts, unlike Hargreaves Lansdown

What You Need To Know

Best For:
  • Hargreaves Lansdown is generally the cheaper platform for holding shares, whether that’s in an ISA or a GIA
  • Wider range of products than Fidelity, including a Cash ISA and Stocks & Shares LISA
  • More investment options than Fidelity, including corporate and government bonds
  • More modern and user friendly app and online platform
Fidelity logo
Best For:
  • Generally, cheaper to hold funds with Fidelity than Hargreaves Lansdown 
  • No charges at all for its Junior SIPP, unlike with Hargreaves Lansdown
  • Lower dealing fees than Hargreaves Lansdown unless you make more than 20 trades per month
  • It offers joint accounts, unlike Hargreaves Lansdown

What is Fidelity?

Fidelity Investments was founded in 1946 in the USA and is one of the largest investment managers in the world. 

It has almost $4 trillion in assets under management and is one of the big 4 global fund managers, along with Vanguard, Blackrock and State Street. Combined, they manage approximately $24 trillion of investments (as of Dec-22).

In the UK, and around the world outside the US, Fidelity is known as Fidelity International and has been operating in the UK for over 50 years. 

It offers an investment platform service for retail investors with over 1.5 million customers in the UK, alongside its professional fund management.

What is Hargreaves Lansdown?

Established in 1981, Hargreaves Lansdown is one of the largest retail investment platforms in the UK. 

It styles itself as the UK’s No.1 investment platform for private investors, and has over 1.6 million investors managing £135.5bn in investments.

Hargreaves Lansdown vs Fidelity: Fees

Let’s look in more detail at the all-important costs for Fidelity vs Hargreaves Lansdown.

They both have tiered fee structures based on how much you have invested and, in Hargreaves Lansdown’s case, the type of assets you invest in:

Hargreaves LansdownFidelity
Platform FeesHolding funds:
Up to £250,000: 0.45%
£250,000 – £1m: 0.25%
£1m – £2m: 0.10%
£2m+: 0%

Holding shares:
Fund & Share Account: no charge
Stocks & Shares ISA: 0.45% (capped at £45 per year)
Lifetime ISA: 0.25% (capped at £45 per year)

SIPP & Junior SIPP: 0.45% (capped at £200 per year)

No fees for Junior ISAs
Under £25,000: 0.35% with a regular savings plan, or £90 without one
£25,000 – £250,000: 0.35%
£250,000 – £1m: 0.20%, plus you will qualify for Fidelity’s Wealth Management Service
£1m+: 0.20% on the first £1m, 0% above £1m. Max. fee of £2,000

Note that the % fee applies to your total investment, e.g. if you have £300k, the whole £300k is charged at 0.20%

No fees for Junior ISAs or Junior SIPPs
Actively Managed Portfolio Management Fees0.92%-0.99% Platform fees above apply on topN/A
Individual Stocks & Shares / Share DealingFee based on number of deals in prior month:
0 – 9: £11.95
10 – 20: £8.95
20+: £5.95

FX charges of 0.25%-1% also apply on overseas shares
£7.50 per transaction

£1.50 for regular savings plans and dividend reinvestment

FX charges of 0.25%-0.75% apply to international shares
Regulated Financial AdviceInvestment advice: 
Up to £1m: 1%
£1m+: 0%

Financial Planning:
Up to £200k: 2%
£200k – 1m+: 1%
Over £1m; 0%

Both subject to min. charge of £495 for advice over the phone, £1,495 for in-person. VAT in addition
Investment advice: 
1%, subject to minimum fee of £1k, capped at £10k

Ongoing advice:
0.5% per annum of investment/pension value

VAT in addition, depending on product advice

The key distinction in fees is that Hargreaves Lansdown applies a separate fee structure to holding funds and holding shares. Fidelity applies the same fee structure on your entire portfolio, regardless of the make up between funds and shares.

At Generation Money we’ve done the maths on which works out cheaper for you, so here’s what you need to know for holding funds and shares with Fidelity vs Hargreaves Lansdown (as at April-23):

Funds:

  • If you want to hold under £20k of funds without regular investing (£25 or more per month), then Hargreaves Lansdown is cheaper
  • For all other amounts, or for any amount with regular investing, Fidelity is cheaper

Shares:

  • Holding any amount of shares in a non-ISA account (General Investment Account) is cheaper with Hargreaves Lansdown
  • Holding any amount of shares in a Stocks & Shares ISA without regular investing (£25 or more per month) is cheaper with Hargreaves Lansdown
  • Holding shares up to £12,800 with regular investing in a Stocks & Shares ISA is cheaper with Fidelity. Above this amount, Hargreaves Lansdown is cheaper

It should also be noted that holding shares or funds in a Junior SIPP is cheaper with Fidelity as it charges no fees for this.

On the other hand, Hargreaves Lansdown offers a Stocks & Shares Lifetime ISA (LISA) which charges 0.25% per year, capped at £45. Fidelity does not offer a LISA.

Dealing Fees

For online dealing Fidelity charges a fixed fee of £7.50 per transaction, whereas Hargreaves Lansdown’s fee varies depending on the number of deals made in the prior month. 

This means that if you plan to make 20 or more transactions per month, Hargreaves Lansdown is cheaper. However, for fewer than 20 transactions per month, Fidelity works out cheaper.

But, if you plan to make more than 20 dealing transactions per month, you will likely be better off with a commission-free investment app such as Plum, or a low-commission app such as Lightyear. Capital at risk if you invest.

Both Fidelity and Hargreaves Lansdown charge more for phone dealing, and apply FX fees on international shares. Neither charges dealing fees for Junior ISAs, with Fidelity also not charging dealing fees in Junior SIPPs.

Ready-Made Portfolios

Hargreaves Lansdown offers 4 ready-made portfolios, ranging in fund costs from 0.92%-0.99%. All 4 of Hargreaves Lansdown’s portfolios are growth portfolios – more on these below.

Generally, the ready-made portfolios offered by Hargreaves Lansdown aare more expensive than those provided by specialist robo-advisors. 

For the lowest-cost fund investing, you should consider InvestEngine which is an investment platform that allows you to invest in over 550 ETFs. InvestEngine also offers ready-made portfolios, and they are all cheaper than both Hargreaves Lansdown’s. 

But, InvestEngine only offers ETFs so you cannot invest in unit trusts or other types of funds like you can with Fidelity and Hargreaves Lansdown.

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Hargreaves Lansdown vs Fidelity: Products & Accounts

Both Fidelity and Hargreaves Lansdown offer a good range of products and account options. Each offers a Stocks & Shares ISA, JISA, GIA, SIPP and Junior SIPP. 

However, Hargreaves Lansdown also offers a Stocks & Shares Lifetime ISA and Cash ISA. It also has an Active Savings account which brings together a range of savings accounts providers to choose from. 

So overall, Hargreaves Lansdown has a wider range of ISA products. The lack of a Lifetime ISA with Fidelity is disappontng but not surprising, as Hargreaves Lansdown is one of the few major investment platforms to offer a Stocks & Shares LISA.

In addition, with both Hargreaves Lansdown and Fidelity you can also purchase Personal Financial Advice if you want a professional to guide you through your investment and financial planning options. 

Pricing for financial advice between both providers is competitive, but Hargreaves Lansdown has a lower minimum fee – if you take advice over the phone. 

On the other hand, Fidelity offers a joint trading account for up to 4 account holders. Hargreaves Lansdown does not offer a joint trading account. Fidelity’s joint account may be of interest if you have a partner or small group you want to invest with.

Overall, I give the edge to Hargreaves Lansdown as it offers more ISA options. However, there’s not much in it and Fidelity still offers a good range of investment accounts for most needs.

Hargreaves Lansdown – Switch Your Money On

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Hargreaves Lansdown vs Fidelity: Investments, Portfolios & Funds

Each provider offers thousands of shares, funds, unit trusts and investment trusts to invest in. 

Fidelity is itself a fund manager and so you will have full access to its funds to invest in, some of which are discounted compared to other investment platforms. 

With Hargreaves Lansdown you can also invest in both corporate and government bonds, unlike with Fidelity. You will usually have to deal bonds over the phone so they will attract higher dealing fees, though. 

In addition, Hargreaves Lansdown offers ready-made portfolios to invest in. Each of Hargreaves Lansdown’s are based on risk appetite and are actively managed: Adventurous, Moderately Adventurous, Balanced and Cautious. 

They’re all growth portfolios, too, which means they seek to build value over time. However, they are significantly more expensive than the ready-made actively managed portfolios offered by specialist robo-advisors such as Moneyfarm and &me.

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Fidelity, on the other hand, does not offer ready-made actively managed portfolios. It does, however, offer a fund finder tool called Easy Invest. 

This asks you a few simple questions and suggests a Fidelity fund for you to invest in. It’s a relatively basic tool, but may be a good option for beginner investors.

Both providers offer their own shortlists of funds that they’ve chosen based on various criteria. 

Hargreaves Lansdown offers its Wealth Shortlist, which is a list of funds picked by Hargreaves Lansdown based on various criteria, which you can choose to invest in. 

In addition, Hargreaves Lansdown provides its Hargreaves Lansdown Select portfolios which are also managed by Hargreaves Lansdown fund managers. These are actively managed funds. 

Fidelity has its own expert-picked funds lists with its Select 50 Balanced Fund. 

Overall, both platforms offer a huge range of funds, including ETFs, to choose from to construct your own portfolio of investments. However, Hargreaves Lansdown offers a wider range as it also allows you to invest in bonds.

If you are specifically interested in investing in ETFs, then InvestEngine is the lowest cost option.

Hargreaves Lansdown vs Fidelity: Research, Tools and Advice

Both Fidelity and Hargreaves Lansdown offer a range of tools, research and guides on their websites. An experienced, or confident investor, will probably make use of the tools on offer, which are more comprehensive than those seen with robo-advisors. 

Beginner investors are also well-served with both platforms providing a range of guides and explainers for those with less investing experience.

However, both lack the detailed tools and analysis that you can get with other trading and investment platforms. 

If you’re a seasoned investor, then you may prefer more sophisticated tools available with other providers, such as Fineco Bank.

Both platforms also offer personal financial advice from a regulated professional and this service is competitively priced by both. If you have a more complex financial situation, or simply want the advice of a professional, this could be a good option for you.

Additionally, Fidelity offers a Wealth Management service to clients with over £250k in assets invested. This qualifies you for more personlaised guidance and support from Fidelity.

Hargreaves Lansdown vs Fidelity: Which Has The Better App?

Each provider has an app alongside their online platform. I tested both apps against each other for this comparison, although I’ve used Hargreaves Lansdown’s app for a number of years now.

Both apps allow you to see your investments and portfolios, as well as fund your account. Market news and updates are also regularly provided in-app with each provider.

In my experience, Hargreaves Lansdown’s app is easier to use and has a cleaner and more modern interface.

Hargreaves Lansdown app
Hagreaves Lansdown’s app

The same goes for Hargreaves Lansdown’s online platform through its website. It’s easier to navigate and feels moe modern and user friendly than Fidelity’s. 

Fidelity’s app is ok to use but does not offer much more beyond checking your portfolio and carrying out basic account activity. 

However, the best investment apps on the market tend to be the newer app-only investment platforms such as Plum and Lightyear. Capital at risk if you invest.

They’re typically aimed as younger and less experienced investors but are focused on tech and app experience. You may want to consider these as good alternatives for app investing.

Hargreaves Lansdown vs Fidelity: Is My Money Safe?

Both Fidelity and Hargreaves Lansdown are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and have Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) protection.

This means that if either company were to go bust, your money would be protected up to the value of £85,000 by the regulator. 

It should be noted that some of the funds offered by both Fidelity and with Hargreaves Lansdown are located outside of the UK and therefore are not covered by FSCS protection. This information is made clear in the Key Investor Information Document available online with both platforms.

Both Hargreaves Lansdown and Fidelity segregate client money from their own using custodian accounts held with secure 3rd parties. These also fall under FSCS protection.

Both platforms are well-established and have decades of experience managing investments and client assets.

Overall, when comparing safety between Fidelity vs Hargreaves Lansdown, they are pretty evenly matched.

Hargreaves Lansdown vs Fidelity: Pros & Cons

To summarise my comparison of Hargreaves Lansdown vs Fidelity, I’ve outlined below what I believe are the main pros and cons of each investment platform.

Hargreaves Lansdown Pros & Cons

Hargreaves Lansdown Pros

  • Lower minimum investment than Fidelity for all products
  • Cheaper than Fidelity for holding shares in most cases
  • Caters to wide range of users with an extensive mix of ready-made, actively managed and passive portfolios
  • Able to invest in corporate and government bonds, unlike with Fidelity
  • Extensive investment research and useful tools, good for experienced investors
  • Offers regulated personal financial advice, good for those seeking guidance with their investments
  • Active Savings account brings together the best savings rates from a range of providers
  • User friendly app and online platform
  • Offers more ISA products than Fidelity, including a Cash ISA and Stocks & Shares LISA
  • FCA regulated and FSCS protected

Hargreaves Lansdown Cons

  • Generally, more expensive for holding funds than Fidelity for larger amounts of investment, or for any amount if regularly investing (more than £25 per month)
  • Does not offer joint accounts
  • Dealing charges are higher than Fidelity’s unless making more than 20 transactions per month

Fidelity Pros & Cons

Fidelity Pros

  • With regular investing, it’s cheaper to hold funds with Fidelity than with Hargreaves Lansdown for any amount of investment
  • If not investing regularly, it’s cheaper to hold funds with Fidelity vs Hargreaves Lansdown if you have more than £20k invested
  • Wide range of products to choose from, including ISA and SIPP accounts
  • Joint accounts for up to 4 customers available
  • No charges for its Junior SIPP, unlike Hargreaves Lansdown
  • FCA regulated and FSCS protected
  • Easy Invest to help you choose a fund to invest in
  • Curated list of expert-picked funds (Select 50)
  • Wealth Management service if investing over £250k
  • Access to personal financial advice

Fidelity Cons

  • High minimum investment of £1,000
  • No ready-made actively managed portfolios to invest in
  • No Lifetime ISA or Cash ISA
  • Genrrally, more expensive to hold shares than it is with Hargreaves Lansdown
  • Relatively basic app and online platform user experience

Hargreaves Lansdown vs Fidelity: Final Verdict

Both Fidelity and Hargreaves Lansdown are good choices for more experienced investors, and those who want to pick their own investments. They both have a huge range of funds and shares to invest in.

Generally, if you want to hold shares in an ISA or GIA, then Hargreaves Lansdown is cheaper as its ISA fees are capped for shares, and it does not charge platform fees on shares in a GIA. 

The exception is if you’re investing less than £12,800 and have a regular investment of £25 per month set up, in which case Fidelity is cheaper.

However, for holding funds Fidelity generally works out cheaper, especially for larger investments, as it has lower platform fees. Fidelity’s Junior SIPP is also cheaper thab Hargreaves Lansdown’s as it charges no fees for it.

In addition, Fidelity has lower dealing fees unless you regularly make more than 20 trades per month.

Fees aside, though, Hargreaves Lansdown also a wider range of account options, including a Cash ISA and Lifetime ISA which is not available with Fidelity.

Hargreaves Lansdown also has more investment options than Fidelity, as it offers corporate and government bonds. You are unable to invest in these through Fidelity’s platform.

Furthermore, Hargreaves Lansdown’s app and online platform are more modern and easier to use than Fidelity’s. There’s also more in the way of research and insights with Hargreaves Lansdown. 

Hargreaves Lansdown – Switch Your Money On

ISAs, Pensions, Funds and Shares.

Thousands of stocks, bonds & funds to choose from with the UK’s largest platform for private investors.

ISAs, Pensions, Funds and Shares.
Thousands of stocks, bonds & funds to choose from with the UK’s largest platform for private investors.

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