I am from Canada and use IB as my broker because they are cheap.
Trade futures now as a hobby and am fairly successful using price action.
Want to get more into options for time reasons and wondered if anyone new of an options api for IB.
I like IB for its diversity and cost but find it a bit confusing. Thought there may be a company out there that offers options trading using a simpler platform integrated with IB.
I don't like TWS that much myself, but for options I think it's doing a pretty decent job.
Options are more complex than other instruments, using a "simple" trading platform for options may hide some of options specific aspects, so that's maybe not a good idea anyway.
Usually in trading, those who know don't talk, and those who talk don't know. (Al Brooks)
success requires no deodorant! (Sun Tzu)
OptionVue (optionvue.com) can use the IB data feed as its data source, but any 3rd party Option platform will have some limitations because IB limits you to 100 symbols at one time. So when you open up a couple option chains, you can easily exceed that number. I believe you can request more symbols from IB (at a higher cost?), but I haven't done it myself.
If you tell us what specifically you want your simple option platform to do (other than interface with IB), we might be able to steer you toward something.
I use IB, but I am not happy with their platform, so I opened an account with TradeStation.
TradeStation has lower commissions, if you trade more contracts. IB has very unclear commissions, so the size of the commission is actually always surprise. You never know. They are hiding behind market fees.
Also their naked options margins are nonsense. They obviously want you to trade spreads, because they can get double commission on spread, then on naked put/call.
TradeStation has better platform, it's much faster.
I tried to open Call spread with Interactive Brokers and TradeStation in the same time. I always manually changed the limit price for one dolar less and waited a bit, and again and again.
First test was OK - both brokers realized the trade for the same price.
But I was very unhappy from the result of the second test: Interactive Brokers realized the trade for price 2 USD worse!
I am not sure if they are playing game with my orders, because that would be very bad, so maybe it's just the "speciality" of their platform and network - it just doesn't work as it should. I don't know.
TradeStation is much faster. I change the limit price and the trade is realized in a second. With Interactive Brokers, I change the limit price and I have to wait 20 seconds to see if the trade will be realized or not. Or even worse: it's not relized, but with other broker it is, for the same price!
So, I will completely switch to another broker, probably TradeStation.
I think that the best platform for options is ThinkOrSwim, but I can't open account with them, because I am not from the US.