Guaranteed ordinary results is not necessarily a bad thing. Much better than decidedly poor results. I think that's what the OP found out the hard way and is now planning to move to Vanguard. The truth of the matter is that for individual investors the only "guarantee" is how much we spend on fees, trading costs, etc. (AKA friction) So, the investments need to be evaluated with those costs in mind. One of the accounts I manage had a low balance due to restrictions on contributions. I was originally investing in it the same way I was investing in the other accounts. Soon I realized that this small account couldn't absorb the transaction costs the same way. So, I just parked the money in an S&P 500 ETF and left it alone. It may only get ordinary results but, as you said, better than decidedly poor results due to friction.- zol
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