Brokers for day trading
Customizable Options Chains Set up your chains to display the exact info you need to see. You can do much more with the COE: Route your orders directly to a selected options exchange Reverse your strategies with the click of a button to reflect your market sentiment See how much premium you will pay or receive for each complex order before you send it Save your favorite strategies for faster input in future orders Executions Window Use this window to see the margin requirements on open orders and trades in each underlier.
See all trades broken down by individual fill. Use the Strategy view to manually break and hedge eligible positions. Manually hedge your positions and strategies. Select any row to break an already existing hedge.
Pin positions to mark them as hedged or broken Use Auto-hedge to automatically hedge all eligible positions for the best utilization of margin Options Level 2 Quotes Get an in-depth look at options liquidity at every price level. Lightspeed Trader provides you with real-time quote feeds from all the major exchanges. Level 2 allows you to see buyers and sellers in the market and offers insight into potential points of resistance and support. Integrated time and sales, positions bar, Greeks bar and order ticket If your strategy involves scalping options, this feature is a must.
Options Time and Sales Keep track of where options are actually trading, not just where they are being quoted.
Link your time and sales window to your options quotes Customize and sort your columns based on your preferences Customizable Layouts Lightspeed Trader allows you to configure up to 10 personalized screen layouts.
Layout Example Trade Stocks, Options, and Futures Lightspeed lets you trade equities, options and futures from a single screen. Level 2 stock quotes Streaming Options Chains Level 2 Options Quotes Level 2 Futures Quotes Scan the Market for Trading Opportunities Lightscan screens the entire universe of symbols to display symbols sorted and filtered based on your unique preferences.
Advanced Charting Fast — Our charts are powered directly by our ticker plant. This eliminates any delays between market prints and chart updates. Customizable -Easily link charts to Level II screens, create hot buttons to view multiple charts, automatically plot trade executions into your charts, configure time frames, change colors and display options. Risk Controls Remain Disciplined and prevent order entry errors using our front and back end risk controls.
Tip of the Iceberg These are just some of the solutions our systems offer day traders. See Lightspeed Trader in action in our video series. Open an Account Try a Demo. The technology and features built into our platform are driven by one goal: We pride ourselves on providing the fastest market data and order management solutions in the industry.
Lightspeed now allows you to easily build and trade complex options strategies like debit and credit spreads, straddles, strangles and butterflies.
The navigation is simple, intuitive, and extremely powerful. To top it off, take advantage of additional intraday leverage extended to you from hedged options strategies. Set up your chains to display the exact info you need to see. Lightspeed offers dozens of columns and settings. Our options chains are fully interactive. Select multiple lines in your chain and automatically send the corresponding strategy to your order entry window. You can also link you chains to stock quotes , level2 options quotes, and options prints time and sales.
The COE window can receive multiple lines directly from the options chain. This allows you to quickly and easily select, stage and send your complex options strategy orders. With our low options commissions , you never pay extra for complex orders. Keep track of where options are actually trading, not just where they are being quoted. Lightspeed Trader allows you to configure up to 10 personalized screen layouts.
Each layout can stretch across four monitors, and you can switch between layouts with the click of a button. Lightspeed lets you trade equities, options and futures from a single screen. View one of our platform intro webinars to see how simple it is.
Level 2 stock quotes. Level 2 Options Quotes. Level 2 Futures Quotes. Lightscan screens the entire universe of symbols to display symbols sorted and filtered based on your unique preferences. But today, to reduce market risk, the settlement period is typically two working days. Reducing the settlement period reduces the likelihood of default , but was impossible before the advent of electronic ownership transfer. The systems by which stocks are traded have also evolved, the second half of the twentieth century having seen the advent of electronic communication networks ECNs.
These are essentially large proprietary computer networks on which brokers could list a certain amount of securities to sell at a certain price the asking price or "ask" or offer to buy a certain amount of securities at a certain price the "bid".
The first of these was Instinet or "inet" , which was founded in as a way for major institutions to bypass the increasingly cumbersome and expensive NYSE, also allowing them to trade during hours when the exchanges were closed. Early ECNs such as Instinet were very unfriendly to small investors, because they tended to give large institutions better prices than were available to the public. This resulted in a fragmented and sometimes illiquid market. The next important step in facilitating day trading was the founding in of NASDAQ —a virtual stock exchange on which orders were transmitted electronically.
Moving from paper share certificates and written share registers to "dematerialized" shares, computerized trading and registration required not only extensive changes to legislation but also the development of the necessary technology: These developments heralded the appearance of " market makers ": A market maker has an inventory of stocks to buy and sell, and simultaneously offers to buy and sell the same stock.
Obviously, it will offer to sell stock at a higher price than the price at which it offers to buy. This difference is known as the "spread". The market maker is indifferent as to whether the stock goes up or down, it simply tries to constantly buy for less than it sells. A persistent trend in one direction will result in a loss for the market maker, but the strategy is overall positive otherwise they would exit the business.
Today there are about firms who participate as market makers on ECNs, each generally making a market in four to forty different stocks. Another reform made was the " Small Order Execution System ", or "SOES", which required market makers to buy or sell, immediately, small orders up to shares at the market maker's listed bid or ask.
In the late s, existing ECNs began to offer their services to small investors. New brokerage firms which specialized in serving online traders who wanted to trade on the ECNs emerged. Archipelago eventually became a stock exchange and in was purchased by the NYSE. Moreover, the trader was able in to buy the stock almost instantly and got it at a cheaper price.
ECNs are in constant flux. New ones are formed, while existing ones are bought or merged. As of the end of , the most important ECNs to the individual trader were:. This combination of factors has made day trading in stocks and stock derivatives such as ETFs possible. The low commission rates allow an individual or small firm to make a large number of trades during a single day. The liquidity and small spreads provided by ECNs allow an individual to make near-instantaneous trades and to get favorable pricing.
The ability for individuals to day trade coincided with the extreme bull market in technological issues from to early , known as the Dot-com bubble. In March, , this bubble burst, and a large number of less-experienced day traders began to lose money as fast, or faster, than they had made during the buying frenzy.
The NASDAQ crashed from back to ; many of the less-experienced traders went broke, although obviously it was possible to have made a fortune during that time by shorting or playing on volatility. In parallel to stock trading, starting at the end of the s, a number of new Market Maker firms provided foreign exchange and derivative day trading through new electronic trading platforms. These allowed day traders to have instant access to decentralised markets such as forex and global markets through derivatives such as contracts for difference.
Most of these firms were based in the UK and later in less restrictive jurisdictions, this was in part due to the regulations in the US prohibiting this type of over-the-counter trading.
These firms typically provide trading on margin allowing day traders to take large position with relatively small capital, but with the associated increase in risk. Retail forex trading became a popular way to day trade due to its liquidity and the hour nature of the market. The following are several basic strategies by which day traders attempt to make profits.
Besides these, some day traders also use contrarian reverse strategies more commonly seen in algorithmic trading to trade specifically against irrational behavior from day traders using these approaches. It is important for a trader to remain flexible and adjust their techniques to match changing market conditions. Some of these approaches require shorting stocks instead of buying them: There are several technical problems with short sales—the broker may not have shares to lend in a specific issue, the broker can call for the return of its shares at any time, and some restrictions are imposed in America by the U.
Securities and Exchange Commission on short-selling see uptick rule for details. Some of these restrictions in particular the uptick rule don't apply to trades of stocks that are actually shares of an exchange-traded fund ETF. Trend following , a strategy used in all trading time-frames, assumes that financial instruments which have been rising steadily will continue to rise, and vice versa with falling.
The trend follower buys an instrument which has been rising, or short sells a falling one, in the expectation that the trend will continue. Contrarian investing is a market timing strategy used in all trading time-frames. It assumes that financial instruments which have been rising steadily will reverse and start to fall, and vice versa.
The contrarian trader buys an instrument which has been falling, or short-sells a rising one, in the expectation that the trend will change. Range trading, or range-bound trading, is a trading style in which stocks are watched that have either been rising off a support price or falling off a resistance price. That is, every time the stock hits a high, it falls back to the low, and vice versa. Such a stock is said to be "trading in a range", which is the opposite of trending. A related approach to range trading is looking for moves outside of an established range, called a breakout price moves up or a breakdown price moves down , and assume that once the range has been broken prices will continue in that direction for some time.
Scalping was originally referred to as spread trading. Scalping is a trading style where small price gaps created by the bid-ask spread are exploited by the speculator.