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Fidelity Review: Cash Management Account

Dec. 6, 2018
Banking, Checking Accounts
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We adhere to strict standards of editorial integrity. Some of the products we feature are from our partners. Here’s how we make money.
4.0 NerdWallet rating

Where Fidelity shines:

  • ATM fee reimbursements nationwide.
  • No monthly fees or minimum opening deposit requirements.
  • FDIC insurance on cash balances.

Where Fidelity falls short:

  • Limited in-person support. 

Where Fidelity shines:

  • ATM fee reimbursements nationwide.
  • No monthly fees or minimum opening deposit requirements.
  • FDIC insurance on cash balances.

Where Fidelity falls short:

  • Limited in-person support.

Where Fidelity shines:

  • ATM fee reimbursements nationwide.
  • No monthly fees or minimum opening deposit requirements.
  • FDIC insurance on cash balances.

Where Fidelity falls short:

  • Limited in-person support.

 

The bottom line

Fidelity Investments

at Fidelity Investments,

Member, FDIC

The Fidelity Cash Management account is technically a brokerage account, though it functions like a checking account, with FDIC insurance available for deposits. It also has consumer-friendly overdraft policies and earns interest. Fidelity isn’t a bank, however, so it doesn’t offer certain products, such as basic savings accounts.

Best if: You’re looking for a free cash account that earns a little interest to go alongside a Fidelity brokerage account.


Read on for more information about Fidelity’s checking, CDs, bank experience and overdraft fees.

Checking

5.0/5.0

The Cash Management Account is not technically a checking account, but it operates similarly to one, in that it offers a debit card, check-writing and Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. protection.

Some upsides:

ATM fee reimbursements. Fidelity reimburses ATM fees charged by other institutions nationwide (note that for transactions outside of the country, a 1% foreign transaction fee still applies).

No monthly fees or minimum balance requirements.

A downside:

Low interest rate. The account earns just 0.31% APY for balances under $100,000. Other banks with interest-bearing checking accounts offer higher APYs.

» Want to explore other checking options? Check out NerdWallet’s best checking accounts.

How does Fidelity Investments compare?

Fidelity Investments

Cash Management Account

NerdWallet Rating

APY

0.31%

Monthly Fees

$0

Bonus features

No Monthly Fee

ATM reimbursements

Chime

Spending Account

NerdWallet Rating

at Chime,

Member, FDIC

APY

N/A

Monthly Fees

$0

Bonus features

No Monthly Fee

No overdraft/NSF fees

10,000+ ATMs

Simple

Fee-Free Checking Account

NerdWallet Rating

at Simple,

Member, FDIC

APY

0.01%

Monthly Fees

$0

Bonus features

No overdraft/NSF fees

No Monthly Fee

10,000+ ATMs

Not for you? Read more bank reviews

CDs

5.0/5.0

Fidelity offers a portfolio of brokered certificates of deposit. These are CDs issued by banks for customers of brokerage firms. They look and function a lot like standard CDs in that they have set term lengths and FDIC insurance.

An upside: Users can choose CDs with competitive rates. Many CDs with term lengths of two years or more earn north of 3.00% APY.

A downside: There is a $1,000 minimum deposit. This is typical of larger banks, but lower deposit minimums can be found elsewhere.

» Looking to compare CDs? Read NerdWallet’s list of Best CD rates.

Bank experience

4.0/5.0

An upside: Teller support is available 24/7, and Fidelity’s Twitter page is active and responsive. Chat support is available on the website.

A downside: Branch support is hard to come by. There are only about 190 financial planning offices scattered across the country.

Overdraft fees

4.5/5.0

An upside: Fidelity doesn’t charge overdraft or continuous negative balance fees. Transactions will be either be covered from a backup source, such as a Fidelity brokerage or margin account, or rejected.

A downside: Overdraft transfers need to be funded from a separate Fidelity brokerage account, or borrowed from a Fidelity margin account.

Fidelity Investments

at Fidelity Investments,

Member, FDIC

No fees and great ATM access

If you’re looking for a fee-free account with excellent ATM coverage to manage your spending money, Fidelity’s Cash Management account will serve you well. Although there are no overdraft fees, you’ll need to have a Fidelity investment account if you want to take advantage of its free overdraft protection.


Ratings methodology

NerdWallet’s overall ratings for banks and credit unions are weighted averages of several categories: checking, savings, certificates of deposit or credit union share certificates, bank experience and overdraft fees.

Factors we consider, depending on the category, include rates and fees, ATM and branch access, account features and limits, user-facing technology, customer service and innovation.

The stars represent ratings from poor (one star) to excellent (five stars). Ratings are rounded to the nearest half-star.