Best options broker?

Discussion in 'Options' started by, Jun 29, 2002.

  1. Could someone please recommend a good options broker? I have been using Datek for some time, but are not very satisfied with their service. This is what I'm looking for:

    - Streaming option quotes
    - Low commissions (<20$ for 10 contracts)
    - Direct access
    - Possibility to buy long calls and puts with cash account
    - Low account minimum (< 5K$)

    Thanks for any help...

  2. asad147a


  3. I use optionsxpress and they give good customer service and fast executions of market orders. Also there is no account minimum at all, you can start with $100 if you want. There also are no hidden fees or fees for inactivity.

    If you are a once a month type of trader or have less than $2,000 for options then optionsxpress is practically the only thing worth considering.

    I have never used IB but it seems that if you are a highly active trader they can save you a lot on commissions because they don't have a minimum commission per order ( no ticket charge ). Ticket charges at other brokers are often $5-$15 per transaction and add up very quickly. But, if you are not very active they will stick you with lots of extra fees for services whether you use them or not. I think their minimum for an account is $2,000.

    If you have more than $2,000 and trade every day, then IB is probably for you.
  4. Hmmm I think you don't know IB to say :'they will stick you with LOTS of EXTRA fees for services' ...

    I don't see what you are talking about ? What are those fees ?
    George, IB customer since 1999...
  5. def

    def Sponsor

    to set the record straight:

    IB: $1 per option.
    No minimums, no other fees except the exchange data fee. If you do more than $30 in commissions per month that is waived.

    OptionsXpress: 1.50 per contract 14.95 minimum + exercise assignment fee of 19.95

    30 trades at IB = $30
    2 trades at optionxpress = $29.90.

    IB caters to the active trader but the inactive traders are on the same level playing field.
  6. Thanks asad147a, dotslashfuture, GeorgeSoros & def for your valuable input.

    Based on your advice I have checked out both Optionsxpress and IB. I tried the IB demo, which seemed to work fine.

    dotslashfuture - would you please confirm that Optionsxpress do privide streaming option quotes, since I can't find that info on their webpage?
  7. asad147a


    Does the 30 trades mean 30 contracts or trades with any number of contracts. ?

    Please confirm if my understanding as stated below is correct.

    Trading 30 Contracts irrespective of number of trades
    at IB cost $30.00

    Trading a maximum of 20 contracts with 2 trades at Options Xpress costs 29.90.

    By any comparison Interactive Brokers appear to be cheaper.
  8. ktm


    IB by a longshot...based on your first post, they seem to meet your needs and it would be difficult to create a scenario where they are not the outright cheapest options broker a retailer could ever find.
  9. qazmax


    I am using PreferredTrade right now and ave been very happy with the results so far.

    The offer spreads, and stops based on the stock price or the option price. THey have direct access to all the floors. But they do not have streaming quotes, best when used with another quote feed.

    Customer service has been very good so far.

    1.95/contract... 19.95 min so IB might be cheaper...

  10. zxcv1fu


    I think the commision for 20 contract of Options Xpress is $30. Min 14.95 does not mean additional.

    Has anyone checked the broker interest/margin difference besides fees?

    Some brokers require you to trade thru their software program which makes me hesitate to join, another learning curve to conquer.

    I spent some time to check into option brokers lately too. Currently Datek is the one that I use for option trading. I also use a Real tick broker which gives me the direct access real time quotes with all exchanges. All this time I find Datek always provides the best quote. Even with stock trades, Datek provides the best execution even when I did not see the Island in the insides. Do not know how they do it.

    Which option borkers provides pair tradings & stops based on stock price?
    #10     Jul 7, 2002