A decline in the number of investors using 401(k) plans, increasing unemployment and an aging population have knocked Fidelity Investments from its slot as the No. 1 mutual fund provider and distributor.

Last week Cogent Research released its 2010 Investor Brandscape report, a self-reported survey of 4,000 affluent and high-net-worth investors in the United States who gave their perceptions of distributors and mutual funds. The report said Fidelity had fallen to No. 2 behind Charles Schwab Corp. in the Top 10 distributor rankings and No. 2 behind Vanguard among the Top 10 mutual fund companies.

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