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Charles Stanley Direct fund supermarket review

We analyse the charges levied by Charles Stanley Direct and ask whether the fund supermarket provides good value for investors

In this article
Who is Charles Stanley? What accounts and services does Charles Stanley offer? Is Charles Stanley Direct good or bad? What do customers say about Charles Stanley Direct?
What are Charles Stanley Direct's charges? Who is Charles Stanley Direct good for? Who is Charles Stanley Direct expensive for? Get top money-saving tips from Which?

Who is Charles Stanley?

Established in 1782, Charles Stanley is one of the oldest firms on the London Stock Exchange. 

Charles Stanley Direct is the do-it-yourself or 'execution-only' arm of wealth manager Charles Stanley and provides access to Charles Stanley funds and regulated financial advice from its parent company if desired.

What accounts and services does Charles Stanley offer?

The information below gives an at-glance view of the key things that the accounts and services Charles Stanley Direct offers.

Elements marked with a are offered by Charles Stanley Direct and those marked with a are not.

 

Advisory Services

 

Advisory services allow you to access professional investment advice.

 

 General investment account

 

A general investment account that can hold different types of investments but doesn’t give tax-free benefits like pensions and Isas.

 

 Junior Isa

 

A junior Isa is a tax-free savings account for under 18s.

 

 Sipps

 

A Sipp is a pension where you have complete control over the investments you put your savings into.

 

 Stocks and shares Isa

 

A stocks and shares Isa is a tax-free account that allows you to put your money in a range of investments.

 

Annuities

 

An annuity is an insurance product which allows you to swap your pension savings for a guaranteed regular income that will last for the rest of your life.

 

Banking services

 

Banking services allow you to operate bank accounts, make transfers and make payments.

 

 

Income drawdown

 

Income drawdown allows you to take money out of your pension to live on in retirement.

 

Lifetime Isa

 

A lifetime Isa is a tax-free savings or investment account designed to help people aged 18-39 buy their first home or save for retirement.

 

Savings accounts

 

A savings account is somewhere you can put your money so it can grow in value.  

Is Charles Stanley Direct good or bad?

To get an idea of how good or bad Charles Stanley Direct is, we asked its customers.

Which? members can exclusively read the results of our unique customer satisfaction survey.

Members can log in to read our analysis. If you're not already a Which? member, you can take a one month trial to Which? Money for £1 to get instant access to all our reviews and results.

 

Which? members can exclusively read the results of our unique customer satisfaction survey, which reveals how customers rate Charles Stanley Direct fund supermarket for seven different elements of its service.

Members can log in to read our analysis. If you're not already a Which? member, you can take a one month trial to Which? Money for £1 to get instant access to all our reviews and results. 

 

Aspect of service Star rating
Customer service Logged out padlock
Efficient administration Logged out padlock
Online functionality Logged out padlock
Online tools and guidance Logged out padlock
Information about investments Logged out padlock
Clarity of charges Logged out padlock
Value for money Logged out padlock

What do customers say about Charles Stanley Direct?

  • 'Easy, and if I need help, the email service with Charles Stanley works really well, helpful and timely replies. I am quite happy with it.'
  • 'Easy website to use, with good background info to refer to.'
  • 'Through Charles Stanley Direct I have Crest membership so that my name is on the share register and I receive direct communications from the companies in which I am invested.'

Check out our guide on the best and worst investment platforms to see how Hargreaves Lansdown compared.

What are Charles Stanley Direct's charges?

Annual charges

  • 0.35% per annum on first £250,000 of funds held across all accounts
  • 0.20% per annum on Funds between £250,000 and £500,000
  • 0.15% per annum on Funds between £500,000 and £1m
  • 0.05% per annum on Funds between £1m and £2m
  • 0% on funds over £2m

Trading charges

  • £11.50 to trade stocks and shares online
  • Free online trading for funds

Who is Charles Stanley Direct good for?

Charles Stanley Direct offers great value for those with smaller portfolios.

Of brokers who charge a percentage based platform charge, its headline charge of 0.35% is one of the most competitive rates around. 

Who is Charles Stanley Direct expensive for?

Charles Stanley Direct may be expensive for investors with larger portfolios. 

If you have a larger portfolio, you may be better placed choosing a provider with a fixed fee structure. 

We’ve estimated the cost of investing various sums in investment platforms over the course of a year in the table below. The costs assume you only buy funds (shares work out slightly cheaper with some companies), and make four purchases and four sales each year.

Amount invested Annual cost
£100 a month £2
£5,000 £18
£10,000 £35
£25,000 £88
£50,000 £175
£100,000 £350
£250,000 £875
£500,000 £1,750

Source: Analysis by Which? Money correct as of April 2019

 

Read our comparison of investment platform charges to see how Charles Stanley Direct compares.

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