Tick Size Pilot ("TSP" or "Pilot") Program:
Under the TSP Program, if IB receives any order in a Pilot Security that does not conform to the designated pricing increment (e.g., a limit price in a $0.01 increment for a security designated as trading $0.05 increments), IB will REJECT that order, subject to limited exceptions. IB strongly encourages a thorough review of your software or your vendor’s software to understand the criteria for what causes an order in a Pilot Security to be rejected to permit you or your vendor to make changes to correctly handle orders in Test Group Pilot Securities.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
Q: What is the Tick Size Pilot?
A: On May 6, 2015 the SEC approved an amended TSP NMS Plan. The Pilot will be two years in length. Data collection for the Pilot began on April 4, 2016, 6 months prior to the implementation of the trading and quoting rules for the Pilot. Implementation of the trading and quoting rules for the Pilot will begin on October 3, 2016.
The Pilot will be conducted using a Control Group and three Test Groups where variations in quoting and trading rules exist between each group. Please see the TSP NMS Plan for additional information.
Q: Will the Pilot quoting and trading rules apply during regular market hours, pre-market hours and post market hours?
A: The Pilot rules apply during all operational hours (pre-market, regular hours, and post market hours trading).
Q: Will the Pilot quoting and trading rules apply to odd-lot and mixed-lot sizes?
A: Yes, the Pilot rules to all order sizes.
Q: Will orders in Control Group Securities be accepted in price increments of less than $0.05?
A: Yes, orders submitted in price increments of less than $0.05 will continue to be accepted in Control Group securities.
Q: Will orders in a Test Group 1, 2 or 3 Pilot Securities be accepted in price increments of less than $0.05?
A: No, unless covered by an exception, orders submitted in price increments of less than $0.05 will be rejected.
Q: Which Pilot Security Orders in Test Groups will Interactive Brokers accept at other than $0.05 increments?
Midpoint orders with no explicitly stated limit price or impermissible offsets will be accepted
VWAP orders which do not have an explicitly stated limit price or impermissible offsets will be accepted.
Interactive Brokers will accept Exchange operated Retail Price Improvement orders as follows:
Test Group 1 in $0.001 price increments
Test Groups 2 and 3 in $0.005 price increments.
Q: Will there be any changes to the Opening / Closing processes on Exchanges?
A: Please refer to each of the exchange rules for details but in general there will be no changes to the Opening / Closing process. All orders entered and eligible to participate in Exchange Opening / Closing Cross will be accepted in increments of $0.05. The Exchanges will begin publishing all quotes in increments of $0.05; however, Net Order Imbalance Indicator prices may be published in increments of $0.025.
Q: What will happen to my GTC order that was placed prior to October 3rd in a Pilot Stock that was priced in impermissible tick increments?
A: Interactive Brokers will cancel all outstanding GTC orders in Pilot stocks in Test Groups that are not in permissible tick increments with respect to limit, stop and offset prices.
Q: What will happen to my GTC order placed after October 3rd that was placed and accepted in a nickel tick increment but the Pilot Stock moves from a Test Group to the Control Group which permits non-nickel increments?
A: The GTC order will automatically be able to be revised by the user in non-nickel increments on the date the Pilot stock moves from the Test Group to the Control Group. Similarly, if a stock gets added to Test Group due to a corporate action, IB will cancel the GTC order if it is priced in impermissible increments.
Q: Where can I find out more information?
A: See KB2752 or the FINRA website for additional details regarding the Pilot Program: http://www.finra.org/industry/tick-size-pilot-program
1) Click on the LOG IN button at the top right corner of the page.
2) Under the section TRADER WORKSTATION, click on TWS Latest.
4) Click on the item Windows 32-bit.
5) Make sure that the description under the DOWNLOAD button has changed to "Windows: 32 bit". Click now on DOWNLOAD.
6) Launch the downloaded file. The Trader Workstation installation will start. At this point you may see the warning message "Trader Workstation latest is already installed...". Ignore this warning and click on the button Next > to continue the installation.
7) Your "Trader Workstation" Desktop icon will be automatically updated. You can now launch the 32-bit Trader Workstation by a double click on that icon.
If you have launched the 32-bit TWS and the 32 bit version of eSignal but you still receive the same error message, please follow as well the instructions below
To correct an incompatibility with the dbcapi.dll file, we will replace that file with another version of it taken from the eSignal installation folder. Please follow the steps below to perform the substitution:
1) Navigate to C:\Jts and rename the file dbcapi.dll to dbcapi_old.dll
2) Navigate to the directory where 32-bit eSignal 12 is installed (most commonly C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Interactive Data\DM)
3) Copy dbcapi_vc8.dll from that directory into the C:\Jts directory.
4) Move to the C:\Jts directory
5) Right click on the dbcapi_vc8.dll file (now in the C:\Jts directory) and select rename. Type dbcapi.dll as the new filename.
6) TWS is now ready to accept the eSignal data feed.
TWS users running add-on applications in Excel using DDE on a Windows 64-bit operating systems may receive the following error message upon log in or when enabling the DDE client:
This message is usually displayed for the following reasons:
You running an instance of TWS that is using the 64-bit version of the Java Virtual Machine while attempting to load the ddedll.dll library which has been compiled for 32-bit Java. This error can be corrected by re-installing TWS 32-bit from IB website.
The API Components (and consequently the library ddedll.dll) have not yet been installed but you already enabled the DDE Client Connection for TWS. This error can be corrected by installing the API Components.
1) Click on the LOG IN button at the top right corner of the page.
2) Under the section TRADER WORKSTATION, click on the TWS Latest.
Note: IB has recently updated the installer wizard for Trader Workstation (TWS) and now utilizes a new desktop icon (click here for Release Note). Clients using an older build of TWS and wish to run a DDE client connection, would need to install a newer build of TWS and start using the new desktop icon.
If you have installed and launched the 32-bit TWS but you are still receiving the same error message, please proceed with the instructions below
Please open the page http://www.ibkr.com in your browser and click on the menu Trading --> API Solutions. Then at the bottom of the page, click on the button "LEARN MORE ABOUT IB API" and perform the steps below:
9) This will direct you to Interactive Brokers API License Agreement, please review.
10) Once you review the API License Agreement, click the I Agree button at the bottom.
11) Under the section "Windows" on the right side, download one of the IB API packages listed and install it.
12) Once the installation has completed, log back into TWS.
IB provides to its account holders a variety of proprietary trading platforms at no cost and therefore does not actively promote or offer the platforms or add-on software of other vendors. Nonetheless, as IB's principal trading platform, the TraderWorkstation (TWS), operates with an open API, there are numerous third-party vendors who create order entry, charting and various other analytical programs which operate in conjunction with the TWS for purposes of executing orders through IB. As these API specifications are made public, we are not necessarily aware of all vendors who create applications to integrate with the TWS but do operate a program referred to as The Marketplace@IB which operates as a self-service community bringing together third party vendors who have products and services to offer with IB customers seeking to fill a specific need.
While MetaTrader is not a participant in The Marketplace@IB, and does not support integration with the TWS, different vendors such as Trade-Commander (trade-commander.com), and jTWSdata (www.tradingsoftwarelab.com/jtwsdata/) do offer software which they represent acts as a bridge between MetaTrader and the TWS. As is the case with other third-party software applications, IB is not in a position to provide information or recommendations as to the compatibility or operation of such software.
Account holders are encouraged to routinely monitor their order submissions with the objective of optimizing efficiency and minimizing 'wasted' or non-executed orders. As inefficient orders have the potential to consume a disproportionate amount of system resources. IB measures the effectiveness of client orders through the Order Efficiency Ratio (OER). This ratio compares aggregate daily order activity relative to that portion of activity which results in an execution and is determined as follows:
OER = (Order Submissions + Order Revisions + Order Cancellations) / (Executed Orders + 1)
Outlined below is a list of considerations which can assist with optimizing (reducing) one's OER:
1. Cancellation of Day Orders - strategies which use 'Day' as the Time in Force setting and are restricted to Regular Trading Hours should not initiate order cancellations after 16:00 ET, but rather rely upon IB processes which automatically act to cancel such orders. While the client initiated cancellation request which serve to increase the OER, IB's cancellation will not.
2. Modification vs. Cancellation - logic which acts to cancel and subsequently replace orders should be substituted with logic which simply modifies the existing orders. This will serve to reduce the process from two order actions to a single order action, thereby improving the OER.
3. Conditional Orders - when utilizing strategies which involve the pricing of one product relative to another, consideration should be given to minimizing unnecessary price and quantity order modifications. As an example, an order modification based upon a price change should only be triggered if the prior price is no longer competitive and the new suggested price is competitive.
4. Meaningful Revisions – logic which serves to modify existing orders without substantially increasing the likelihood of the modified order interacting with the NBBO should be avoided. An example of this would be the modification of a buy order from $30.50 to $30.55 on a stock having a bid-ask of $31.25 - $31.26.
5. RTH Orders – logic which modifies orders set to execute solely during Regular Trading Hours based upon price changes taking place outside those hours should be optimized to only make such modifications during or just prior to the time at which the orders are activated.
6. Order Stacking - Any strategy that incorporates and transmits the stacking of orders on the same side of a particular underlying should minimize transmitting those that are not immediately marketable until the orders which have a greater likelihood of interacting with the NBBO have executed.
7. Use of IB Order Types - as the revision logic embedded within IB-supported order types is not considered an order action for the purposes of the OER, consideration should be given to using IB order types, whenever practical, as opposed to replicating such logic within the client order management logic. Logic which is commonly initiated by clients and whose behavior can be readily replicated by IB order types include: the dynamic management of orders expressed in terms of an options implied volatility (Volatility Orders), orders to set a stop price at a fixed amount relative to the market price (Trailing Stop Orders), and orders designed to automatically maintain a limit price relative to the NBBO (Pegged-to-Market Orders).
The above is not intended to be an exhaustive list of steps for optimizing one's orders but rather those which address the most frequently observed inefficiencies in client order management logic, are relatively simple to implement and which provide the opportunity for substantive and enduring improvements. For further information or questions, please contact the Customer Service Technical Assistance Center.
Account holders who have elected to opt out of IB's Secure Login System (SLS), and effectively relinquish the protections afforded by two factor authentication, are strongly encouraged to familiarize themselves with and utilize alternative best practice security measures, a number of which are discussed below.
It's important to note that while none of these measures, on either an individual or collective basis, is deemed equivalent to the SLS in terms of protection and, in fact, are recommended as complementary measures, opting out of SLS serves to increase their relevance.
One way to add protection or a level of security to your IB Trading account while not utilizing a Secure Login Device would be to setup IP restrictions. By selecting this setting through Account Management you're telling Interactive Brokers that you only want access to your trading account(s) from a specified IP address, or a range of IP addresses. In addition, should you have multiple authorized traders for a given account, these restrictions can be set at the individual trader level.
To implement IP restrictions you will need to log into Account Management using your security device and mouse-over the Manage Account menu then click on Security and then on IP Restrictions. This will take you to the "Manage IP Address Restrictions" screen. From there click on the Add IP Address Restriction button, select the trader user name from the drop-down list, enter the IP address from which you connect (xx.xx.xx.xx.xx.xx) and click on the Submit button. Note that any updates do not take effect immediately but rather the following business day.
To find the IP address of your PC please follow the below steps. (Please note that the below will only give you the local PC address. If you are using any type of router in your home network please make sure you use your WAN IP address. Any IP address that starts with 192.XXX.XXX.XXX is most likely your LAN IP, and not your WAN IP. You can find your WAN IP by calling your ISP and asking them for it.)
The IP restriction feature is only intended where the IP address is static, or remains constant. In certain instances your computer’s IP address may be assigned automatically and in a dynamic or changing manner by your network administrator or Internet Service Provider. IB recommends that you confirm that your address is static prior to using this restriction feature.
While the use of the IP restriction feature will restrict access to the IP address(es) you specify, you must be aware it isn't 100% full proof against very advanced electronic thieves who know how to spoof, and or mask an IP Address. it should be noted that this feature alone will not necessarily prevent unauthorized access by any hacker having your user name and password along with the ability to ‘spoof’ your IP address.
If you have any other questions please feel free to contact IB's Technical Support center.