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Clients Rate Top Financial Services Firms in 13 Categories

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Customers of top financial services performers reveal who they love in Hearts & Wallets’ annual national customer satisfaction rating report.

More than 5,000 U.S. households rate their top two financial providers on service and pricing performance in the report, “Wants & Pricing: Helping Customers Purchase What They Want in Saving and Investing.”

The report focuses on top-level national annual satisfaction ratings for the top 23 providers, leading brokers, banks and retirement platforms cited most often by their customers.

Customers also revealed what qualities they most want in their financial providers. According to Hearts & Wallets, “understandability” is the new top consumer desire, with 56% of consumers nationally saying “explains things in understandable terms” is important to them for service dimension attributes.

A perennial top want is tied for first, “fees are clear and understandable,” also with 56%.

The report also reveals firms rated as top performers by their customers for certain qualities like understandability.

Hearts & Wallets provided a sampling of firms that were rated “top performers” or “most improved” by their customers for 13 attributes. The complete report covers 25 attributes for five key service dimensions and three pricing dimensions.

To be cited as a top performer, firms must receive ratings from their customers that are distinctly higher than the ratings customers of other firms gave to those firms. Most improved providers from the prior year are also rated significantly higher by their customers than they were the prior year.

Find out which financial providers fared well in the following 13 attributes:

Explains things in understandable terms

Explains things in understandable terms

USAA, Edward Jones and Ameriprise Financial were the top performers in 2017. These three firms were also named top performers in 2016. Morgan Stanley and Citibank were rated as most improved in this year’s survey.

Understands me and shares my values

Ameriprise, Edward Jones and USAA were all rated top performers for this attribute. Morgan Stanley and American Funds were rated “most improved.”

Has made me money

According to the survey, consumers rate Edward Jones as a “top performer” in the “has made me money” category. Consumers rate Morgan Stanley as “most improved.”

Well-trained staff

For the second year in a row, Ameriprise, Edward Jones and USAA were rated as top performers for having a “well-trained staff.” This year, Morgan Stanley and Charles Schwab also joined the “top performers.”

Scottrade, Citibank and Morgan Stanley were rated as most improved.

Online tools and research

According to this year’s ratings, TD Ameritrade is considered a top performer for its online tools and research. PNC, Merrill Lynch and TD Ameritrade were also rated as “most improved” in this category.

Offers personal financial advice

Offers personal financial advice

Ameriprise, Edward Jones and Wells Fargo Advisors are again considered “top performers” for their personal advice, as they were in 2016 too. Morgan Stanley joined the ranks of top performers in 2017, as well as being voted as most improved.

Fees are clear and understandable

Consumers consider Scottrade a top performer when it comes to clear and understandable fees. Scottrade, PNC and Citibank were rated “most improved” this year.

Investment ideas knowledgeable, timely and tactical

Edward Jones and Ameriprise were rated as top performers for the second year in a row, with Morgan Stanley and Charles Schwab joining them this year. Merrill Lynch and Scottrade were rated as most improved.

Unbiased, puts my interests first

USAA, for the second year in a row, and Edward Jones were rated as top performers by consumers. Consumers rated Morgan Stanley and T. Rowe as “most improved.”

Easily reachable by telephone

Clear, useful statements

No firms were named as top performers when it came to “clear, useful statements.” However, Scottrade and Morgan Stanley were rated most improved.

Easily reachable by telephone

Edward Jones is considered a top performer for phone call performance. Meanwhile, Morgan Stanley and Scottrade were rated most improved.

Has low fees

When it comes to low fees, consumers rate Scottrade, USAA, Vanguard and Charles Schwab as top performers. They also rate Scottrade as most improved.

Fees are reasonable for the service provided

Consumers view Scottrade’s reasonable fees as top performer. Consumers also rate Scottrade, as well as Ameriprise and PNC, as most improved.

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