Cyber v. XOOM v. RT v. Hammer v. IB

Discussion in 'Retail Brokers' started by AAAintheBeltway, Dec 27, 2003.

  1. Here's the deal. I've used RT for years. Very nice platform that offers good charts and Lev II and reasonably fast executions. I'm not a 100 trade a day guy, but I like to look at charts, Lev II and a fairly long list of stocks. A good options quote with greeks is useful, although I trade options with other brokers.

    I have done the numbers and realized I can save quite a lot by ditching RT. I typically don't do enough tickets to get RT free. I compared to XOOM and figured I would net $500/month in savings, less if I have to add a chart service but still substantial. Not sure about commish/fees on Hammer, but it seems more oriented to scalpers and would require charts. IB would require a chart app. I would like to avoid using an additional chart service, both for hassle factor and savings. I know a lot of you use QT but I'm not sure it's what I want.

    I happened to click on the Cyber banner just to take a look. In the past the commish was not competitive, but now it's $9.95 for <5000 shares, plus Island is free. Unlike some of the above, they actually have a professional website that explains every last detail. You have the security of dealing with a big firm. The platform fee is a little steep but doesn't require much to waive it.

    The charts looked a little dubious but they also offer a neat tab feature to save screen space. I found the 2 minute rule thing to be a little confusing too.

    Anyone using these guys and why aren't they the clear winner in this contest?
     
  2. I found them too expensive when I used them before they lowered the fee. Not really good if you trade smaller lots or like to scale in / out over time.

    They do have some very useful scans for intraday monitoring, that platforms like Tradestation woefully lack.
     
  3. AAA,

    I think in order for someone to figure your potential savings and recommend a platform, you'd need to disclose your avg trade size, how many trades per day/month, and what base platform fees you're currently paying.

    Also, knowing what securities you trade/watch would help.
    Futures, which exchanges?
    Stocks, which exchanges?
    Options?
    SSF's?
    How far back does charting application/data need to go? 1 week?, 5 years?
     
  4. Sashe

    Sashe

    very expensive to do partials (since they charge per trade), contradicts with my style, i have Cyber but going to close acct. Plus ECN fees are too high, if you hit someone using CyberExchange Smart routing and its not ISLD you may get charged up to $14.95-19.95 instead of $9.95. Also to make a withdrawal you need to fax it in. To change password gotta call in. You also need to sign up for futures acct separately. Those little things are pretty annoying.
    IB has made much more sense to me at least.
     
  5. Sashe,

    I was a little confused about how they do partials and how their "2 minute rule" worked. If you get partials that take longer than 2 minutes , do they charge an extra commish? That sucks big time. And can you keep doing the same trade over and over for one commish if within 2 minutes, as long as <5000 shares?

    How about the platform in general? Is the charting decent? Reliability?
     
  6.  
  7. Cyber Bryan,

    Thanks for the explanation. Your website is one of the best in terms of clarityand detail, but I wanted to make sure I understood the 2 minute rule correctly.

    As you described it, that is a great advantage. There are few things more annoying than getting an Island partial for 82 shares on a size bid or offer, then watch the market move away from you.

    Now could you clarify what happens with partials? Am I correct in assuming that partials within 2 minutes are one commish but if they execute outside 2 minutes generate additional commisssions? Say I get three partials , each 3 minutes apart. Is that 3 separate full commissions?

    Also, are all Island executions free, ie taking liquidity as well as adding?

    Finally, do you have opening only NYSE orders and do you have a way of showing imbalances?
     
  8. AAA,

    "Now could you clarify what happens with partials? Am I correct in assuming that partials within 2 minutes are one commish but if they execute outside 2 minutes generate additional commisssions?"

    Correct. One ticket, regardless of how many partial fills, within the 2 minute window.

    "Say I get three partials , each 3 minutes apart. Is that 3 separate full commissions?"

    Yep, three commissions.

    "Also, are all Island executions free, ie taking liquidity as well as adding?"

    Yes. Island is always free.
     
  9. nouseforaname,

    Thanks. You using Cyber? What do you think?

    I guess I'll have to think about this for a while, but it seems to me this 2 minute rule is awesome. The downside is you can't leave a limit order out there all day in a thin stock and get filled in drips and drabs. But you can smack the crap out of one for 2 minutes for $9.95, then turn around and pare it out for another $9.95. That's better than a reserve order where anyone can see the size is refreshing and will avoid it. Am I missing something here?
     
  10. nouseforaname,

    Thanks. You using Cyber? What do you think?

    I guess I'll have to think about this for a while, but it seems to me this 2 minute rule is awesome. The downside is you can't leave a limit order out there all day in a thin stock and get filled in drips and drabs. But you can smack the crap out of one for 2 minutes for $9.95, then turn around and pare it out for another $9.95. That's better than a reserve order where anyone can see the size is refreshing and will avoid it. Am I missing something here?


    No problem...I've been a cyber client since Aug. of 99. The 2 minute rule is good (but was better before, they changed it from a 5 minute window a year or so ago;). What are you missing? I don't know...they do charge a per share fee for over 5000 shares (not good if you're trading larger size and/or lower priced issues) and their ecn fees are not the most competitive (see a few other brokers out there who pass on rebates etc.).

    Why have I been with them for so long? 1) Cybertrader data has been flawless for the entire time I've been with them and 2) their client support is top notch (I can reach them in literally seconds if something is/goes awry.

    None of this means I'm not on the prowl for a better deal ;) but thus far cyber has been the perfect fit for me.

    Any other questions just let me know....
     
    #10     Dec 29, 2003