Tradestation vs. IB

Discussion in 'Interactive Brokers' started by Swish, Sep 25, 2003.

  1. Swish


    I've seen a lot of discussion on this board regarding IB and some regarding Tradestation. The Tradestation comments are generally from folks that are familiar with pre ts7 versions of the software.

    As I'm trying to decide who to switch my acct to, I'd like to hear about pros and cons of IB vs ts7 from folks who are fairly familiar with both.

    As far as I can tell, here are the pros for each:


    1. Worldwide markets
    2. Universal accts (can trade all markets from same acct)
    3. Slightly better in price (with new fee structure)


    1. Charting / TA tools built in
    2. Backtesting
    3. Automation ability

    I know both are a bit weak on customer service when compared to higher commission companies (Cyber for instance) - but hey, something's gotta give - I'm tired of letting commissions drive some of my trading decisions.

    I'm sure there are many other pros and cons - please contribute and help me make a wise choice!!!


  2. H2O


    Pro for IB : Offers multicurrency accts
  3. customer ... I will admit TRAD offers something IB and most
    deep discount futures firms do not.

    A way to trade open outcry contracts for a cheap RT

    not sure if this is only a promotion with a limit to number of days
    or trades with TRAD as I am only reading from their ads

  4. Re IB, I went to the combination of E-Signal for charting/backtesting and IB for brokerage because the overwhelming majority of successful traders whom I corresponded with recommended that. Trading can be automated between the two using third party SW until E-Signal gets around to full automation, next year they say.

    In favor of IB is near instantaneous execution with near theoretical slippage.

    I have read elsewhere of data latency issues with TS. Best to inquire about that.

    Unless you have a TS brokerage account, E-Signal plus IB is a lot cheaper. Lower commissions, lower data fee.
  5. Woody


    It is difficult to make an apples to apples comparison between the two because with TS7 you are required to pay a $99 per month platform fee for the charting and backtesting capabilities. IB has no charting, but there are third party venders such as Sierra Charts and Quotetracker which provide charting at a much cheaper rate. The benefit of TS7 charting is that there are no hassles with data maintenance. However, as previously mentioned there have been data latency issues with TS7 in the past.

    From an order platform standpoint, IB is substantially superior to TS7 in my opinion, especially if you use one of add-on programs like Bracket Trader or Ninja Trader. The TWS platform is much more flexible and easier to use and you can set up bracket orders, OCA orders, conditional orders, etc. that are not possible with TS7. The hot key options in TWS are also significantly superior to TS7.

    It seems to me that you need to decide if the platform fee for TS7 is worth the charting and backtesting capabilities. If you like TS7 charting and backtesting capabilities, you can always still use IB for order execution. In my opinion there is no comparison between the order platforms and IB has lower commissions.
  6. ramora


    I use both TradeStation and IB. TradeStation for charting and the ability to program/use EasyLanguage indicators.

    IB for trade entry. Once I place a trade I am usually watching IB for quotes because in a fast market Tradestation will slow a lot behind the market. IB seems to stay close to the trading prices.

    I also like IB because it has a public API that lets me program a new charting program easily. Also several IB front ends are available such as NinjaTrader and BracketTrader.

    I like having two accounts in case the datafeed to one broker gets interrupted.

  7. Which firm has more customers and % net profit?
    I know Ib holds transact much more money.

    Will tradestation startegy plateform will be used in
    long future considering other softwares like wealthlab
    and investor RT,...?
  8. zxcv1fu


    There is no option online trading in TS.
  9. Swish


    for the responses. One related question, with IB being its own clearing firm, does it still direct all orders to 3rd party exchanges or ecns? I'd be worried about the conflict of interest if IB tried to match orders in house.


  10. def

    def Sponsor

    IB doesn't match customer orders. It does have an internal route for equities called TMBR. However orders are only routed to TMBR if TMBR can meet or improve the NBBO. Orders that go trough this route receive instanteous fills.

    The best way to think about it is the tmbr quote becomes part of the NBBO quote and then SMART routing routes to where it believes is the best market.
    #10     Sep 28, 2003