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The Perfect System? - at Least in Theory

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The Perfect System? - at Least in Theory

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  #11 (permalink)
desert CA
Experience: Intermediate
Platform: NT7, TOS, CQG-trader
Broker: AMP, DT, TDA
Trading: CL,NQ,YM
Posts: 2,130 since Jul 2011
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Andrew Scott View Post
So I'm paper trading my system with Thinkorswim for a few months, selling iron condors for the suggested limit ptice, then buying them back a few days later for a lower price.
I was coping with the occasional, outrageously irrational, apparent profit, particularly on AMZN, eg a $500K gain on a 10 contract position in a few days. I figured it was some glitch in their data feed. But most of the trades ( 98% of them) looked reasonably healthy, and the system still showed a profit after discounting those wild bonuses. I believed it was time to test the system on another platform.
I would have been happy to go live with TOS, (because of their amazingly well-organized trading platform and despite their horrendous commissions), but they won't let me open an account because I live in Australia.

Did you have "real-time" quotes on your papertrading system? usually they only have delayed quotes which is about 10-15 minutes if you are just using an unfunded paper account. When you fund your account you may have to ask them to make sure your paper TOS version is real-time.

Personally, I've found that with the real-time quotes TOS simulates the limit orders fairly well, at least better than it used to be pre-TDAmeritrade acquisition original TOS platform. (Fortunately after the TDA acquisition, the improvement of the platform has been prioritized, so marked improvements are constant; when prior , promised improvements would develop at a snail like pace) It's not exactly perfect to live options trading, but it's fairly close now, so yes it does simulate the frustrating non-fills of options of a multi-legged spread not able to be sold or bought back.

If you want to hear my "unwanted" option, the CBOE pits is still a market-maker ripoff machine, meaning what you see on paper or even your own estimates with option prices, one is very likely having to give those locals(if not replaced by market making computer algos now; it's still the same as those algo bid-askers will still pinch the retailer) a tithe for each leg you see of a spread. Some of the former pit market makers actually sell courses and mentorships and such trying to get you to trade what "used to" (or maybe never did ) work in the form of risky delta-neutral spreads such as calendars and iron condors. so, yes, one can use's free videos and information for free learning, but as always to learn any directional or non-directional elusive edge, it's not going to be just shared for free; or up to the individual to find their own way.

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  #12 (permalink)
Adelaide SA Australia
Posts: 7 since Aug 2012
Thanks: 4 given, 0 received

As an update, I now have an account open with Options House. Their platform is a bit primitive and confusing compared to TOS, but at least they tolerate an Australian.
Still not ready to commit real cash to a system, I experimented yesterday with a virtual market order, hoping that the system would get me in at the mid point. Not so.
Before the open, the bid ask spread were
1.65 and 3.60
1.95 and 3.00.
My BTO orders got virtually filled at - guess what? yes, the ask price.
It's a challenge.
The next hurdle is trying to trade live with only $700 cash in my account.
According to FINRA/OH, I need $2K cash in the account before I can open a spread.
I have yet to discover what their definition of a spread is.

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  #13 (permalink)
San Diego, CA
Experience: Intermediate
Platform: TT Pro
Broker: Advantage
Trading: Gasoil, heatoil, crude
baywolf's Avatar
Posts: 55 since Sep 2009
Thanks: 26 given, 31 received

If you are a placing complex order with more than one leg, then the order routes to a complex order book.

Complex Order Book - COBWeb

In addition no market maker is likely going to pick it off unless they have an edge. So you will need to be at least at the mark or give up more edge before someone will bite.

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August 13, 2014

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