Difference between eSignal and Zen-fire

Discussion in 'Retail Brokers' started by david brewster, Dec 28, 2010.

  1. This is probably a newbie question. My understanding is that Zen-Fire is a real-time data-feed provider. eSignal is a trading platform as well as real-time data-feed provider. So why does eSignal need to partner with Zen-Fire as a data provider? See the relevant link: http://www.elitetrader.com/vb/showthread.php?threadid=173260.

    Thanks for any clarification!
  2. This is from Chuck_T from the thread you referenced:

    "The ability to trade on Zen-Fire data, from the eSignal OnDemand - Mini Futures
    platform packs an advantageous punch for CME Group retail traders. The
    combination of eSignal's comprehensive historical data, with the real-time data
    of Zen-Fire, gives traders the best of both worlds; boosting an already
    incredible trading experience for Zen-Fire Traders," says Pat Shaughnessy,
    Principal of Zen-Fire, a leading provider of professional trading solutions.

    In case you didn't know, Zen-fire does not provide historical data. So here, it looks like eSignal is providing the historical data and the realtime data is via Zen-fire which apparently has a better real-time exchange fee structure than eSignal's. At least thats how I interpret it.

  3. Thanks for the info, charlie. That's probably the reason for eSignal-ZenFire partnership. Zen-Fire has a superior feed (unfiltered), and eSignal is a good front-end for charting/trading and is providing historical.

    I do have another question. Zen-Fire's big claim is that it is a super-fast and reliable trading engine (for routing client's orders to exchange). So how were the electronic future-orders routed before Zen-Fire (founded in 2004)? What were the firms before Zen-Fire's presence?
  4. I'm not quite understanding your question. If you are asking what was available to the retail trader to electronically trade futures before zen-fire; there were and are a bunch of them. I personally have used: Pats Systems, Interactive Brokers, Tradestation Securities, Trading Technologies. I currently use zen-fire.

  5. Thanks, Charlie.

    My question was more on the routing technology side. Basically I'm not very clear how the order-routing works. In Zen-Fires' case, a client use a trading platform (NT for example) to receive feed from ZF and to submit orders to ZF. Once ZF received the order, it does a number of order/account checking and route the order to the exchange. In this sense, ZF is called a trading engine. So my question is: how does this "order-routing" works before ZF came to existence?

    Interactive Broker is just a broker, like Mirus. A broker cannot route orders to the exchange directly, right? If a broker can directly route the orders to the exchange, why do we need Zen-Fire?
  6. emg


  7. emg


    that link above will tell you what is zen fire
  8. We don't "need" zen-fire. If you trade thru Interactive Brokers software (I forget what they call it), that order will be routed without any involvement with zen-fire. If you send an order via Tradestation's software - no zen-fire. Same thing for the others I referenced. Pats and Trading Technolgies are what you are calling trading engines. Zen-fire is just another way to do it - not the only way.
  9. Brokers like Interactive Brokers, Tradestation, MB Trading, TD Ameritrade and eTrade to name a few, all have there own order routing technologies. I guess you could call it proprietary technology though they often will expose their technology via an api.

    Brokers like Mirus, as far as I know, down have there own order routing technologies, so they offer a 3rd party solution like zen-fire or Pats or Trading Technologies.

    So breaking it down to the basics, to trade you need:
    1) Data - Realtime and/or Historical and/or end-of-day.
    2) Order routing - To various exchanges depending on what you want to trade. Some go to all exchanges and some go to just a few.
    3) Clearing firm - A Broker may or may not be a clearing firm those that aren't have some sort of relation with one though. Some clearing firms will clear at all exchanges and some will clear at just a few.

    There are various ways to achieve this. This should all be factored into selecting a broker(s), a data provider and an order routing technology.

    With the brokers I mentioned in the first paragraph, they are an all-in-one solution. Brokers like Mirus are not. That is not necessarily good or bad. The marketplace has room for both.

  10. Thanks for the detailed explanation, Charlie. Really appreciate it.
    #10     Dec 30, 2010