No. of Recommendations: 2
The annual ratings for 2012 from Barron's and SmartMoney are out. (Actually, the SmartMoney one just came out this week; the Barron's one came out two months ago but I went back and didn't see where anyone else had posted it.)


Barron's overall top pick was Interactive Brokers, though they admit that it is not a good choice for the casual buy-and-hold investor. I like Barron's rankings because they break out category rankings for various types of investors (long term, frequent traders, novices, etc.). Barron's also casts a wider net and rates and ranks some of the smaller players (Interactive Brokers isn't even on the list in the SmartMoney ratings).


SmartMoney's overall top pick was Fidelity. SmartMoney doesn't rate as many companies (they only tackle the ten biggest), but they do a nice job of breaking things out by specific topic (best and worst customer service, best and worst banking services, etc.).

Wow, SmartMoney really hates Wells Fargo, which is my broker of choice. Can't argue with their logic, though I find that my yearly 100 free trades outweighs the terrible customer service and bland trading interface.
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