Commissions

Discussions about brokerage firms for futures, stocks and other tradeable instruments.
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AFJ Garner
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Commissions

Post by AFJ Garner » Wed Dec 14, 2005 5:40 am

I use a systems assist broker rather than placing orders myself. I live between two countries and am always on a plane. Were I based in one place I would undoubtably trade myself. But travelling between the two places takes 8 hours and I know I would end up missing signals and rollovers. Also the idea of setting up backup facilities in two places just does not appeal: at least one backup pc in each place and certainly back up telephones lines and broadband. Not to mention backup versions of CSI, trading software and so on.

Which brings me to my point: I have had my account traded for me for a while now and am just reviweing costs. I am happy with my broker - he has been at all times most helpful, friendly and efficient and I have no complaints whatsoever.

I guess much depends on account size: presumably most clients re-negotiate commissions as account size increases.

But I would be interested in hearing from others what they are paying their brokers for this service and whether com paid is inclusive or exclusive of FCM com and exchange fees.

I guess PM or e-mail would be the most tactful way to discuss this.

Bondtrader
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Post by Bondtrader » Wed Dec 14, 2005 9:19 am

I robotrade more than one account at more than one robo-broker. It makes me feel more comfortable to spread my business around, and to have a slight bit of competitive tension between brokers.

Account A trades futures using a system very similar to the "Turtle" system within Trading Blox Builder. Entries and exits use Stop orders and two new Stop orders (at new prices) are entered for every market, every day. Right now it's trading 30 markets so that's 60 new Stop orders each day. Account equity is approx $300K and I pay the robo-broker $19.00 commissions per contract, round-trip.

Account Z trades futures using a system very similar to the "RSI Trend Catcher" within T.B.B. Entries and exits take place "at the Market on the Open". There are no stops of any kind. The broker needs to do far less because there are only 2 or 3 orders a week (whereas account A places 60 orders a day). Account equity is approx $5 million and I pay the robo-broker $11.00 commissions per contract, round-trip. The vastly reduced workload was the main reason why she gave me such a low rate.

Please don't send me PM or mail, I don't read or reply to those. Post here.

AFJ Garner
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Post by AFJ Garner » Wed Dec 14, 2005 10:26 am

Thank you for the reply Bondtrader. On your less active system, does the $11 per round trip include FCM brokerage and exchange fees? I imagine not.

I am trading a system similar to the TBB Bollinger Breakout with entires at the market open and stops placed in the market which get changed regularly as average and its envelope move. Including rollovers there are, I suppose, around 5 trades a week on average going forward......more than in the past since I am increasing the number of futures I trade. It is a slow and easy system to trade.

I currently pay $20 per round trip per contract to the systems assist broker but this does not include exchange fees or FCM comm. I use an IB, while my a/c is with Refco/Man

Thanks, food for thought.

Jason
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Post by Jason » Wed Dec 14, 2005 6:58 pm

I currently execute trades myself either electronically or via email and pay between $3 and $10 RT with Goldman Sachs.

I am investigating establishing a FIX connection (http://www.fixprotocol.org) that would take my TBB orders file or my Mechanica orders file and effectively "Robotrade" for me. I am in the very early stages of looking into this. If anyone has any experience in this area, let me know. Otherwise, I will share my results and conclusions as they arise.

Regards,

Jason

AFJ Garner
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Post by AFJ Garner » Fri Dec 16, 2005 8:12 am

Jason is that all inclusive? I guess exchange and other fees are on top of that? Is that for high volume trading? Can you also talk to someone at GS for this price when you have a question or something goes wrong? Which Goldmans: US or UK? Or elsewhere?

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Post by sluggo » Fri Dec 16, 2005 8:48 am

I think Futures magazine classifies Goldman Sachs as an "Institutional Only" brokerage. They'll open an account for a CTA or a hedge fund or a commercial, but not for a regular Joe private trader. They don't serve the retail segment.

AFJ Garner
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Post by AFJ Garner » Fri Dec 16, 2005 9:01 am

Thanks Sluggo. I had an instutional brokerage account in the name of my BVI company with Goldmans back in the 90's when I was getting US IPOs from them but sadly closed it down. By the way, are you still using the systems assist route or do you put your own orders in these days? I think I must very probably get off my lazy butt and do my own orders and run my system myself. Not on grounds of cost, simply on grounds of experience. I'm far too lazy at looking at fills, slippage, roll timing etc etc.

dailyuser
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Post by dailyuser » Mon Feb 27, 2006 2:45 pm

We charge $16.81 per round turn as a general rule of thumb for system trades...volume goes up - price goes down.

Rob
http://keenercapital.com

zz double
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Post by zz double » Mon Feb 27, 2006 5:53 pm

AFJ,

From my experience its good to execute your own orders, especially now most of them are screen traded. Whereas in the old days the floor traders would be almost guaranteed to fill your sell orders at the bottom and buy orders at the top of the opening range, probably to one of their mates (shock, horror!)............(1 sec while I delete Voldemort's newsletter, must remember to unsubscribe)..........now you have the opportunity to replace them completely and do it yourself. I tend to take a short term view with no heroics and work it so slippage is improved. So far so good.

ZZ

p.s. How is the snow this season in Switzerland, good I hear.

mike168
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Post by mike168 » Tue Feb 28, 2006 1:51 am

I had similar bad experience with Lind-Waldock. I put market-on-open and stop-loss orders for floor traded commodities through that account with bad fills and I decided to close that account. Now I trade electronic futures only through Interactive Brokers. Fast and cheap but markets are limited. Incidentally, I think commission alone does not give the whole picture. Have to consider the fill price and slippage as well. I keep a record of the theoretical system gain versus the actual to keep track of each brokers-market performance (even for my tiny account).

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