SpeedTrader was founded in 1999 by Guy Gentile as the online division of StockUSA Inc, StockUSA based in New York, provides high-performance trade execution and brokerage services to high-frequency, institutional, brokers and active-trading clients.
In 2003 Gentile co-founded Direct Access Software and began developing a bespoke trading platform with high-speed execution routing to the major exchanges. This platform is used by SpeedTrader today and offers lightning fast execution times.
In 2005 they added Forex trading to the product portfolio and currently offer trading in equities, options, futures, and foreign exchange.
- Stocks and ETFs Per Trade: $6.95
- Stocks and ETFs Per Share: $0.0039 per share, $0.39 min per trade
- Futures Trades (Electronic): $1.00 per contract (plus exchange and NFA fees)
- Options Trades: $1.00 per contract
- Bonds Trades: $50 per ticket
- Mutual Funds: $50 per trade for no-load mutual funds
- Investment products: stocks, options, futures, futures symbols, no-load mutual funds, Forex, bonds, ETFs
- Minimum to open account: $0 for cash account, $2,000 for margin account
Their website is pretty clear and easy to use; (reminds me of Firstrade) to me it looks a little amateurish and old fashioned, but everything’s there with multiple ways to contact them if you need any help.
There is the usual Index Pricing, but at least its live data and not delayed. I’m sorry but I really don’t see the need for this information, if you have an account login and if you don’t there are better websites available to get pricing data.
Signing up is pretty simple; they use the rather clever tactic of asking for your email address first. This is because a large number of applicants abandon the process halfway through, either because they don’t have the required forms to hand or it’s taking longer than they expected.
Rest assured SpeedTrader won’t let you forget and if you abandon the process halfway through you can expect a flurry of emails prompting you to complete it.
They have one of the most comprehensive trading platforms I’ve ever seen, it really is on a par with a professional system like Lightspeed.
There are 3 platforms to choose from for equities and options traders.
- SpeedTrader 2.0 – FREE browser-based direct access trading.
- SpeedTrader PRO is $49* per month. Level II Direct Access software
- Sterling Trader Pro is $150 per month. It delivers a full suite of trading tools with reliable, real-time market data, high-end performance, and a fully-customizable, streamlined design power the broad range of execution and management tools.
*($49 fee waived for clients who generate commissions equal to or greater than the total amount of fees that month)
SpeedTrader Pro is an absolutely fantastic trading platform, its point and click functionality makes it easy to execute orders from anywhere in the system, and it gives you access to professional level tools.
iSpeedTrader mobile is as the name suggests, is their mobile trading platform. Limited to the iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch, it gives you access to your account whilst on the move.
It’s a fully functioning platform that enables you to execute orders, get quotes and view account status.
- Low commissions for very active traders
- Free streaming real-time Level I or Level II quotes
- Professional trading platform
- Free intra-day charting
- Virtual trading
- $30 Quarterly Inactivity Fee (if under 15 trades)
- Steep software fees for PRO and Sterling PRO platforms
- High mutual funds commissions
- $35 annual IRA fee and $25 IRA set-up fee
- Option exercise or assignment $30 each
- Lack of trading community
I get the impression that they are only interested in larger more experienced traders.
They do offer trading seminars and training videos, but they’re very much aimed at the intermediate investor and there’s no trading community to learn from. A rookie trader or those that trade infrequently are better served by other brokers.
If you’re looking to manage an IRA account then SpeedTrader is an expensive choice because of the annual $35 maintenance fee and $25 set-up fee.
They are an excellent choice if you’re an experienced investor and trade regularly enough to avoid the quarterly inactivity fees. Their platform alone gives you professional grade tools that are sure to improve your trading and profitability but only if you can cover the steep platform fees for the PRO versions.
Sign-up for a trading account with with them and check out their amazing trading tools for yourself.