They may not be old enough to drive a car, but kids as young as 13 can now trade stocks online—as well as learn about saving, spending and investing—with Fidelity Investments’ new youth account, launched on Tuesday.
The new brokerage account, available only to teens between 13 and 17 whose parent or guardian has a retail brokerage account with Fidelity, requires no minimum deposit or investment and charges no fees. It features educational content and tools to teach teens about money and investing, comes with a debit card for spending, and allows teens to buy and sell stocks, Fidelity mutual funds, and most exchange traded funds. Parents and guardians will be able to monitor the account, but the teen is considered the account owner. The youth account transitions to a standard brokerage account when the owner turns 18, with more flexibility and more choices.
Fidelity said this is the first brokerage account targeting teens, but the industry as a whole has been pushing to attract new, ever younger investors. Robinhood, which offers zero commission trading on its popular app, is credited with unleashing a new generation of young retail investors. The median age of a Robinhood investor is 31. Robinhood has been repeatedly accused of luring unwitting individuals into the markets without proper protections.
Fidelity said its new youth account has safeguards so teens won’t get into trouble. Although the teen account owner will technically have sole control of the account and decision-making, only a parent or guardian can open or close the account, and they can cancel the debit card at any time. They can also view debit card statements and trade confirmations and sign up for activity alerts, and they serve as the point of contact with Fidelity for any problems.