Retail investors can now bypass brokers and trade directly on the world’s derivatives, equities and bond exchanges at the click of a mouse. Or so says EasyScreen, a provider of trading technology for the equities, derivatives and bond markets, whose customers include eSpeed and Refco as well as investment banks.
The company is also a vendor for LIFFE CONNECT(tm), the LIFFE trading platform, and offers connectivity to EUREX, Euronext Paris (Matif), Chicago Board of Trade, Chicago Mercantile Exchange, Singapore Exchange and Sydney Futures Exchange.
The idea of the new service is to give retail investors access to the same technology and dealing cost advantages as professional traders, using real time market prices. The service initially offers connectivity to worldwide derivative exchanges, with equities available by late autumn and bonds to follow.
“In a world where time really is money, even contacting your broker by telephone could result in a costly delay,” says Todd Van Hees, Head of Support at EasyScreen. “If the execution of an order is delayed even by seconds it could be filled at a higher price and the trader will lose money. Our new service offers online investors the very same technology that is used by professional traders, giving them the ability and control to execute trades themselves, at incredibly fast speeds. A trader’s order hits the exchange around a tenth of a second after they hit the buy or sell button, enabling them to take full advantage of price movements, rather than risking being disadvantaged by them.”
To use the service, investors need to register with a clearing-house and download EasyScreen’s Easy Access Trade (“EAT”) trading screen software to begin live trading on the exchanges.Orders are routed via EasyScreen’s EasyRouter software, which not only allows orders to reach the exchanges rapidly, but also means that traders or clearing-houses can set individual limits through an advanced pre-trade risk management system. Connection to the exchanges is offered through a hi-tech data centre in the City of London with a second site acting as a live backup. The data centres employ advanced security measures and up-to-date monitoring and disaster recovery systems, to ensure the trading system stay up and running.
EAT is downloaded via the web and sits as a minimal installation (3 Megabytes) on the trader’s PC. EAT allows the trading of equities, derivatives and bonds on a single screen. EAT traders benefit from high transaction speed trading and seamless cross market opportunities, with amalgamated pre-trade risk management efficiently offsetting margin requirements across all products and exchanges.
Easyscreen was founded in 1998 by two former LIFFE traders. The company has offices in London, Chicago, New York and Sydney.