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Forrester Online Investor Survey Puts Fidelity On Top

As the popularity of online trading skyrockets almost as much as Internet stocks, more people are searching for a Web broker they can rely on. Forrester Research weighed in Friday with its own survey of the Web's top brokerages.

A survey of 1,255 online investors rated Fidelity as the best overall online trading firm, followed closely by Datek and SURETRADE. Participants rated brokerages on advice, site design, transaction fees, information provided, site performance, and transaction confidence.

Datek and SURETRADE led individual categories, topping in site design and price, respectively

"Today's online investors can choose from a growing number of institutional options, ranging from pure-play eBrokers to the online offerings of traditional brokerages," said Forrester analyst Kenneth Clemmer.

"To compete in this rapidly expanding market, online brokers need to deliver the features that consumers demand. SURETRADE's strong showing is evidence that a lot of consumers want low transaction fees. But as more consumers move their investments on-line, eBrokers will have to address new demands for information, advice, and reliable site performance."

Missing from the top of the list were popular brokerages E*Trade and Schwab, which have both been plagued with technical difficulties recently.

The findings from the survey are highlighted in the report "Investors Grade eBrokers."