How Do Edward Jones and Vanguard Compare?

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By Jacob Maslow

The first two names that spring to mind when we think of ETFs, mutual funds, or investments are The Vanguard Group and Edward D. Jones. After only a few years in business, these two businesses have evolved into investing industry goliaths. So let’s take a closer look at Vanguard vs. Edward Jones.

Although Edward Jones Investments and The Vanguard Group provide comparable investing services, there are notable differences between them. Compared to the latter, Edward Jones demands a more considerable minimum investment, but the Vanguard Group necessitates a smaller minimum investment. In addition, Edward Jones Investments charges variable commissions, whereas the Vanguard Group charges fixed costs.

Below is a detailed comparison between Vanguard and Edward Jones, covering services, prices, transfers, customer satisfaction ratings, and minimum account balances.


Vanguard vs. Edward Jones: How will we compare them?

While they provide comparable services, Vanguard and Edward Jones differ significantly. For example, while Edward Jones Investments is a conventional, comprehensive brokerage, Vanguard, on the other hand, can be considered to be an online trading firm.

In the following sections, we will compare the two firms on the following factors:

  • Minimum investments
  • Fees and commissions for CDs and bonds, ETFs, Individual Stocks, and Mutual Funds
  • Transfer process
  • Customer satisfaction

Minimum Investments

Edward Jones

Accounts that need a minimum amount to be invested at Edward Jones include:

  • Guided Solutions Fund Account: $5,000
  • Guided Solutions Flex Account: $25,000
  • Advisory Solutions Unified Management Account (UMA) Model: $ fifty thousand
  • Select Retirement Account: $5,000 in individual retirement assets or $10,000 for purchases of annuities
  • Advisory Solutions Fund Model: $25,000


Accounts that need a minimum investment at Vanguard include:

  • STAR Fund: $1,000
  • Most joint mutual and individual funds: $3,000
  • Admiral Shares: If you want your funds to be managed actively, it is 50,000 dollars;  $100,000 for other funds and $3,000 for index funds.

How they compare

Minimum investments differ by type of account at Edward Jones and Vanguard. Some investments and accounts, such as those offered by Vanguard ETFs and Edward Jones non-retirement brokerage accounts, have no minimum initial investment.

Consider the sort of account you require and the amount you are prepared to invest when deciding which investment firm is best for you in terms of Minimum Investment.

Monthly/Annual Fees

Edward Jones

The fees charged by Edward Jones differ depending on the kind of account. For example, some are evaluated monthly, while others are charged yearly.

  • Essential are subject to a $30 yearly charge.
  • Individual trading accounts have no annual charge; brokerage accounts employing cash handling solutions for businesses have a $35 annual fee.
  • The yearly charge for IRAs is $40, and an additional 20 bucks per calendar year for every extra individual retirement account.
  • Annual fees for company-sponsored 401(k) schemes may apply, but they vary based on your program and other circumstances.
  • Unless you reach the minimum balance requirement, money market funds will cost you $3 per month (which differs depending on whether you have retirement shares or investment shares)


Vanguard’s yearly fees vary depending on the kind of account. Registering for e-delivery will save you money on annual fees.

  • $25 for basic IRAs
  • For trading accounts with lower than USD 10,000 in holdings, the fee is $20 per client.
  • For mutual fund portfolios with a credit of under $10,000, the fee is $20 per account.
  • 60 dollars for 403(b) plans

How they compare

Vanguard and Edward Jones both disclose their charge and commission schedules. Edward Jones’ account statements are available on the company’s website. Vanguard’s Trading Services percentage and fee schedule is available on the company’s website. On average, Edward Jones is more expensive regarding fees and yearly charges, but Vanguard is recognized for charging lower fees for investing in products and services.

Bonds and CDs


Edward Jones

CD and bond costs differ based on whether it was issued recently or previously. Edward Jones typically incorporates charges in the original listing price of freshly approved CDs and bonds, so you’ll discover the fee payable you finalize the deal.

Formerly issued municipal bonds, CDs, and bonds issued by corporates might have a fee of 2 percent when purchased plus 0.75 percent when sold. However, some freshly released CDs are free of charge.


Fees vary depending on the kind of CD or bond. Costs for recently issued CDs are typically approximately $50, whereas fees for old CDs range from $1-2 per USD 1,000 of the original amount. In addition, some freshly issued CDs and Commission-free US Treasury bonds are offered. Vanguard’s website has the whole bond and CD fee schedule.

How they compare

On average, Edward Jones is pricier on CDs and bonds, while Vanguard is known for providing lesser costs for investing in services and products.

Mutual Funds

Edward Jones

The firm does not charge customers a fee for mutual funds. Instead, the mutual fund company calculates the costs the consumer will owe, and the mutual fund business pays a percentage to Edward Jones. As a result, your costs will vary depending on the mutual fund company’s rules and charge schedules.

According to Edward Jones’ mutual fund disclaimer, the provider may eliminate sales expenses if you spend a particular value or in a specific class of shares.


Vanguard provides free of charge electronic trading for mutual funds. Your asset value determines the costs for phone transactions. The following service costs apply to phone trades:

  • $50 per transaction with assets totaling from $50,000-500,000.
  • $50 for each trade with assets ranging between $500,000 and $1 million.
  • There is no service fee for deals with higher than $1 million in holdings.

How they compare

Regarding Mutual Funds, Edward Jones is noted for charging more on average. At the same time, Vanguard is regarded for charging less for investing in services and goods via phone trades and conducting electronic trading free of cost.


Edward Jones

Edward Jones levies a commission (usually 2 percent of the amount invested or $5, depending on which is more significant) depending on the purchase value, processing fee, and administrative expenses for ETF transactions.


Computerized ETF trades, like Mutual Funds, are free of service charges. Fees for phone transactions vary depending on your net capital. Fees for phone transactions are:

  • $25 each trade with holdings under $50,000
  • $25 per transaction with holdings ranging from $50,000-500,000.
  • 20/trade for assets ranging from $500,000 to $1 million
  • With assets ranging from $1 million-5 million, the first 25 transactions are free; after that, the price is $2/transaction.
  • If you have more than $5 million in assets, your first hundred transactions are complimentary, with a $2 cost for each subsequent trade.

How they compare

On average, Edward Jones is more expensive in ETFs, while Vanguard is known for providing lower-cost investing.

Individual Stocks

Edward Jones

Edward Jones imposes a flat fee of around 2 percent of the amount invested, plus a processing charge (the firm for most stock transactions openly discloses this.


  • With USD 50,000 or lower in holdings, you’ll pay $25 for every phone trade, $7 for the first 25 internet trades, and $20/online trade afterward.
  • With assets ranging from $50,000-500,000: USD 25/phone trade; $7 each internet trade
  • With assets ranging from $500,000-1 million: You will be charged $20/trade over the phone; $2/internet transactions.
  • With assets ranging from $1 million-5 million: 20 cents for the initial 25 trades made by cell phone or internet, and $2/subsequent trade.
  • With $5 million or greater in assets: 20 cents for the first 100 phone or internet trades and $2 for each subsequent trade.

How they compare

If we talk about Individual Stocks, Edward Jones is, on average, more costly, but Vanguard is regarded for offering lower charges for investing in services.

Personal Advising

Edward Jones

Edward Jones imposes yearly fees based on the total amount of your account’s assets for personal advising. The first cost is around 1.35 percent of the initial USD 250,000. After that, the percentage falls as the amount in your account increases in value, reaching 0.50 percent when you have greater than USD 10,000,000 in total assets.


Vanguard’s yearly fee-only consulting services are reasonably priced overall, but you must make an initial outlay of USD fifty thousand to access them. Your annual fee will be determined by your holdings, as follows:

  • 0.30 percent on assets less than $5 million
  • 0.20 percent on assets valued between $5 million and $10 million
  • 0.10 percent on assets valued between $10 million and $25 million
  • 0.05 percent on assets worth $25 million or more

How they compare

As with investing commissions, Edward Jones is more expensive overall in Personal Advising, but Vanguard is acknowledged for having lower advising charges.

Transfer Process

Transfers from or to Edward Jones

To open a brokerage account with them, you must first visit a local Edward Jones consultant. The consultant will go through your choices with you; for eg, if you have just moved employment, they will assist you in determining if to roll over or relocate a 401(k) account.

Changing your IRA or brokerage account to another company costs $95/account.

Transferring from or to Vanguard

Visit Vanguard’s website as it has rollover and transfers instructions. The transfer procedure will differ based on the firm you are leaving or joining.

Many transactions may be made online, although processing time might be more than two months. Therefore, you will need the following data on hand:

  • Your current firm’s bank statement from the last three months.
  • The account type you want and the monetary amount you wish to send
  • Your date of birth, your SS number
  • Have your Vanguard account details handy if you’ve previously signed on for one.

Vanguard does not charge any outgoing or inbound transfer fees; however, your existing firm may impose a transfer cost if you switch to Vanguard.

How they compare

If unsatisfied with your present broker, you can consider switching to or from Vanguard or Edward Jones. However, according to the Securities and Exchange Commission, a transfer should “begin and conclude with your new company,” which means you should open an account with your new business first so that it can assist you with your transfer.

While the transfer procedure will differ based on which company you work with, the SEC encourages staying in touch with both organizations throughout the process to ensure a successful transition.

Customer Satisfaction

Edward Jones

The BBB and C ratings do not recognize Edward Jones. Consumer Affairs gives Edward Jones a score of little more than 1 out of 5.


Vanguard isn’t recognized by the BBB, although it does have an A rating. In addition, Vanguard receives a 1/5 rating from Consumer Affairs.

How they compare

Concerning client satisfaction, Vanguard and Edward Jones rank similarly. While the ratings appear poor at first glance, they should be taken with a pinch of salt since individuals only post reviews after a tremendously unpleasant experience, and the BBB derives its ratings from complaints filed.

When deciding between Vanguard, Edward Jones, and other businesses, consider variables such as the company’s charges and your level of involvement in account management.

The breakdown

A summary of Vanguard and Edward Jones’ fees is given in the table below.


  Stock/ETF Commission Mutual Fund Commission Margin Rate Maintenance Fee Annual IRA Fee
Edward Jones $0 $0 $0 0.50% to 1.50% + $300 0.50% to 1.50% + $300
Vanguard $0 $20 10% $20 $20


The Winner – Vanguard

Vanguard was formed in 1975 by Jack Bogle, and it is operated at cost and is client-owned. This distinguishes Vanguard from any other investing provider.

In contrast, Edward Jones is a privately held firm. Therefore, this investment return is derived from the money generated by Edward Jones from account fees and commissions paid when purchasing a mutual fund.

When you spend money on an Edward Jones mutual fund, you pay for the profit distributed to Edward Jones stockholders (owners). So, Edwards Jones’ stockholders want the charges to be maximum, resulting in more significant profits on their money, not yours.

Vanguard is a low-cost operation. Vanguard does not have any stockholders to answer to. So instead, the company’s profits are diverted directly into its mutual funds. As a result, mutual funds with extraordinarily low expense ratios (the capital needed to regulate a mutual fund) are produced.

Vanguard’s average expenditure ratio is 0.18 percent. The market rate is more than 1%. You could say, “Meh, 1% isn’t that big of a concern; I’ll continue with Edward Jones.”

That 1% expenditure ratio might mean a difference of more than $176,000! The 5.75 percent front-end load costs and Edward Jones products regularly underperform Vanguard funds.


Is Vanguard or Edward Jones better for beginners?

Vanguard is often considered the best option for beginner investors due to its low costs, excellent customer service, and wide range of investment options. Additionally, Vanguard offers a variety of educational resources that can help new investors make more informed decisions about their investments.

Does Vanguard charge transfer fees?

Vanguard does not charge any outgoing or inbound transfer fees; however, your existing firm may impose a transfer cost if you switch to Vanguard. It is vital to stay in touch with both organizations throughout the process to ensure a successful transition.

Is it worth switching from Edward Jones to Vanguard?

Depending on your situation, it may be worth considering switching from Edward Jones to Vanguard. You will need to weigh each provider’s pros and cons based on fees, customer service, investment options, and educational resources.

What should I do if I have more questions?

If you have any additional questions or need assistance in deciding between Vanguard and Edward Jones, it is best to speak with a financial advisor or contact the companies directly. Additionally, several online forums can provide advice and guidance when investing decisions.

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