Although its asset management division is still king, the brokerage unit of Fidelity Investments outgrew its money manager peer in 2005 by about 14%, the Boston-based fund giant indicated in an earnings report.

Fidelity Brokerage Co. reported that total client assets under administration last year were $1.4 trillion, an increase of 23% from $1 trillion in 2004. By comparison, Fidelity's core asset management unit grew by about 9% to $1.2 trillion in 2005.

"Customers responded to our series of initiatives to deliver lower-cost mutual funds and annuities, to enhance our sophisticated trading and clearing technology, and provide greater product and pricing transparency," said Ellyn A. McClogan, president, Fidelity Brokerage, in a statement.

Daily average commissionable trades were 275,075, up 23% from the fourth quarter of 2004. Total client accounts in the fourth quarter were 16.6 million, up 16% versus the same period a year ago.

The brokerage unit's key competitors are Charles Schwab and Ameritrade.

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