Wednesday, 8 July 2015

The difference between brokers

Some people don't know this but in this market there are different brokers.
You have:

A) Market makers:
A market maker broker, or a dealing desk, is a broker which purchases a given financial instrument at their own risk. Each market maker competes for customer order flow by displaying buy and sell quotations for a guaranteed number of instruments.
They make money through the fixed difference between the bid and ask price.
These can be good brokers, but if you have a broker that takes positions against you you'll be in deep trouble, because they rather want you to lose your money (like 95% of the people who trade manually do).
In this way they can manipulate the spreads, tell you your strategy isn't allowed or just simply make it hard for you to make a profit (spread spikes, reqoutes, etc),
The bad ones are called bucket shops,
Please be aware I'm not saying every market maker is a bucket shop, there are truly legit one out there,
A good list can be found here:

B) ECN brokers:

ECNs pass on prices from multiple market participants, such as banks and market makers, as well as other traders connected to this, and display the best bid/ask quotes on their trading platforms based on these prices. ECN-type brokers also serve as counter parties to forex transactions, but they operate on a settlement, rather than pricing basis.
Electronic networks make money by charging customers a fixed commission for each transaction. Authentic ECNs do not play any role in making or setting prices, therefore, the risks of price manipulation are reduced for retail traders.
Lately there is a big rise of ECN brokerages and I strongly support this.
A list of this type of broker can be found here:

Side note:
When looking for a good broker you'll always need to do your own homework.
Can you find bad reviews on the Internet, what kind of support do they offer (phone, mail and chat), how quickly are they with respones.
The most important for me is how quick they process withdrawals.

Finding a good system is one, but finding a good broker is another big thing.
I've asked the people of Loop what they see as a good broker and they said they like to work with Key to markets and Topfx.

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