Do any other brokers offer TWS?

Discussion in 'Retail Brokers' started by MB1708, Dec 8, 2001.

  1. MB1708


    Can anyone suggest a discount futures broker as a backup for IB?

    My experience of connection dropouts and system freezes with TWS (especially on FTSE futures) makes me nervous to hold any open positions with IB without a backup account at another broker.

    I do have a couple of backup brokers already but they both use the Patsystems platform, which is rather cumbersome and not a patch on TWS for futures day trading (when it actually works).

    So I was wondering if anyone knows of any other brokers with the TWS platform? ManDirect is one, and they are very well established, but the commission rates they’ve quoted me are more than double those of IB.

    The ideal backup would be financially secure, offering deep discount rates (perhaps just a little more expensive than IB) and with an independent TWS platform (not linked to IB computers). Not much point having a backup broker if their system crashes at the same time as IB!

    Perhaps this is expecting too much. If so, can anyone suggest a good backup futures broker generally?

    Thanks and regards to all,
  2. The following is my understanding on the subject.

    Patsystems, TradingTechnologies, GL Trade and other ISVs (independent software vendors) offer their software to others as a front-end only tobe run on different networks. But Interactivebrokers is not in the ISV business and only run their TWS on their own proprietary network.

    It is true that you can get TWS through other brokers but unlike the front-ends I mentioned, it still runs on the same Interactivebroker's network so you cannot use this arrangement as a backup. Also, unless you do tremendous volume, you'll be hard pressed to find anyone that can come close to matching IB's commissions. IB wants you to come to them direct and charges the account monthly fees and the full realtime data fees. Some brokers will eat this charge but some will pass this on to you. This make it harder for them to match IB's commissions if you use TWS.

    If you do go this route, i.e. get TWS through another broker, you do have a built in backup system since they probably offer Patsystems or one of the other front-ends available to trade the same account.

    I suppose you could open two accounts, the primary one with IB and the backup with another broker. I'm sure the backup broker will gladly take your money since a big part of FCM's income is from the interest income they earn from your account.... at least this was a significant part when the rates weren't so low. :p

    But just remember.... everything is negotiable in this business. That I know for sure. :D