When Level II quotes first came out, they were the rage. However, I rarely hear them talked about in the arena of trading anymore. I see them from time to time mentioned on other conference boards, usually by younger traders who believe they can see something (like an institution) trading a large block. I have found the Level II quotes useful in gauging the depth and amount of buying-selling. Just by glancing at it, I can tell on which side there is more pressure. However, I fool the level IIs all the time. On my trading system there is a "display size" option. The other day I sold 25000 shares but on the level II it appeared that I only had 100 shares up for sale. Anyone looking at the Level IIs and deciding which level to put their trade at that would have been fooled. Indeed, there were large trades placed 5 cents above mine. Unfortunately, the price of the stock never reached that point as I had exhausted the buyers five cents ahead of those guys sales. Its obvious that some institutions will play with the level II quotes trying to fool other traders into thinking a certain way. My question is are Level II quotes really a useful gauge to you? For myself, I use it as a general indicator of buying and selling pressure, however, I know that the Level II is highly manipulated and cannot be trusted 100%.