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Is Interactive Brokers bad?
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Is Interactive Brokers bad?

  #1 (permalink)
Elite Member
Seattle, WA
 
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Is Interactive Brokers bad?

I am considering to swing trade futures so I need a broker that supports server side OCO.
There are only a few of them, and IB is the one that can also trade stocks, which is kind of nice.
However I searched in this forum and found a lot of horror stories with them. Looks very scary to me.
There also seem to be some IB hired folks trying to discredit real traders who filed a complaint.
But I also heard from a few people who used IB for 10+ years and really loved it.
I am really confused is it a good or bad broker.

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  #2 (permalink)
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  #3 (permalink)
Administrator: Retired Backtester
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sam028's Avatar
 
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I also know people who use it for a long time, it's a good choice if you want to trades all kind of instruments, stocks, futures, options, Fx, ..., and it's a serious company.
Their data feed is "prehistoric" compared to Kinetick/Rithmic/IQFeed/TT/..., and the fills can be better with some other brokers, but if you can live with this, why not...

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  #4 (permalink)
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Big Mike's Avatar
 
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Two main issues with IB:

a) Their data
b) The TWS interface with NinjaTrader

I think that if you are trading futures, and you are trading anything smaller than Dailies (and even then, if you value historical data accuracy) then you need a real data provider such as DTN IQFeed or Kinetick if you only use Ninja.

That solves A.

As for B, from what I've read, it really isn't a big deal so long as you don't upgrade TWS until NinjaTrader tells you to. It is a pain that it forces you to log out, but get over it. Not a big deal.

So if you really want IB, then just supplement with a quality data feed and you'll be fine.

Mike

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  #5 (permalink)
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Big Mike View Post
Two main issues with IB:

a) Their data
b) The TWS interface with NinjaTrader

I think that if you are trading futures, and you are trading anything smaller than Dailies (and even then, if you value historical data accuracy) then you need a real data provider such as DTN IQFeed or Kinetick if you only use Ninja.

That solves A.

As for B, from what I've read, it really isn't a big deal so long as you don't upgrade TWS until NinjaTrader tells you to. It is a pain that it forces you to log out, but get over it. Not a big deal.

So if you really want IB, then just supplement with a quality data feed and you'll be fine.

Mike

How about trade execution? Some people say the execution is pretty bad.
I love the idea that I could trade stocks and futures in one broker, but they seem to have a prop trading desk, so I am a bit concerned if they will have the same risk as MF global.

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  #6 (permalink)
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muscleman View Post
How about trade execution? Some people say the execution is pretty bad.

Don't recall ever hearing that complaint about IB.

Mike

Due to time constraints, please do not PM me if your question can be resolved or answered on the forum.

Need help?
1) Stop changing things. No new indicators, charts, or methods. Be consistent with what is in front of you first.
2) Start a journal and post to it daily with the trades you made to show your strengths and weaknesses.
3) Set goals for yourself to reach daily. Make them about how you trade, not how much money you make.
4) Accept responsibility for your actions. Stop looking elsewhere to explain away poor performance.
5) Where to start as a trader? Watch this webinar and read this thread for hundreds of questions and answers.
6)
Help using the forum? Watch this video to learn general tips on using the site.

If you want
to support our community, become an Elite Member.

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  #7 (permalink)
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I've been using IB for many years with no problems.

First of all, IB is a BROKER. Their business is not a chart and data provider.
They do provide charts.... not very good. They provide data.... usable, but far from perfect.

You're better off getting your charting and data from another source.

But if you're looking for a good broker with EXCELLENT EXECUTION, IB would not be a bad choice.

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  #8 (permalink)
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I have used IB for about 3 years now. No issues with execution.

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  #9 (permalink)
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mRoss21 View Post
I've been using IB for many years with no problems.

First of all, IB is a BROKER. Their business is not a chart and data provider.
They do provide charts.... not very good. They provide data.... usable, but far from perfect.

You're better off getting your charting and data from another source.

But if you're looking for a good broker with EXCELLENT EXECUTION, IB would not be a bad choice.

Thank you. Do you know if they have a prop trader on board and trade against you?
I am a bit scared of the MF global case, where the supposedly segregated funds were illegally used by MF Global to make their own bets. If a broker has a prop trader on board, and losing a lot of money, they will have the incentive to risk and illegally use client funds. If they only do the clearing, then there is less incentive to illegally use client funds.
Is IB also the clearing firm, or just an introducing broker?

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  #10 (permalink)
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Big Mike View Post
Don't recall ever hearing that complaint about IB.

Mike

Do you know if they have prop traders on board? I viewed their SEC filings, and it does seem like they have market making business and prop trading. I am concerned if they may do the same thing as MF global, and illegally use client funds in segregated accounts to bet that they can survive.

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