Our UK.StockBrokers.com team spent seven months and hundreds of hours assessing ten different share dealing accounts
for buying shares online in the UK. In total, 124 individual variables were assessed. For this review, we will compare Charles Stanley Direct vs Hargreaves Lansdown.
To start this comparison, first, we will take a look at the fees charged for dealing in the UK. It's important to note that not only is there the cost to place the trade, but most share dealing brokers also charge a monthly, quarterly, or annual management fee depending on the type and size of your portfolio. We assessed both to provide a single star rating for cost. Both Charles Stanley Direct and Hargreaves Lansdown are rated 3.50 stars.
Cost aside, we can now turn our focus to popular tools and features investors prefer in the UK. Account access is certainly at the top of the list, and Hargreaves Lansdown offers clients ISA, ISA - Junior, SIPP, SIPP - Junior and Spread Betting while Charles Stanley Direct offers ISA, ISA - Junior and SIPP. Looking at charting, the number of drawing tools and total technical indicators made available are important as well as stock alerts. Both Charles Stanley Direct and Hargreaves Lansdown provide clients with access to 1 total charting tools. Hargreaves Lansdown boasts an offering of 20 different indicators (for example, moving averages) compared to Charles Stanley Direct's 19 available indicators. Charles Stanley Direct and Hargreaves Lansdown both offer basic stock alerts. Finally, for conducting research while share dealing, having access to mutual fund research reports is also helpful. Hargreaves Lansdown makes fund research reports available to clients, while Charles Stanley Direct does not.
Overall, Hargreaves Lansdown comes out on top with 4.00 stars over Charles Stanley Direct's 3.00 stars. And, when it comes to individual category awards, Hargreaves Lansdown posted awards Best in Class - Offering of Investments and Best in Class - Customer Service in 2017, while Charles Stanley Direct found itself with none of these.