Schwab option trading capability?

garyw

Active member
Gold Member
Schwab is unable to place conditional multi-leg option orders?

Does anyone here use Schwab for option trading beyond single leg trades? Have I been spoiled by TOS?
Just off the phone with their StreetSmart Edge guy and their Derivitives specialist, and amazed with lack of capability.
I have not funded accounts there, and expect that will likely not change unless they provide some functionality.
 

Tim

Member
Aeromir Expert
I have traded options with Schwab for more than 10 years. I use streetsmart it is adequate but not as good as TOS. They do take multi leg orders of all kinds easily. Schwab has demonstrated that thney often have better execution than TOS - I have had orders in on both and schwab will fill when TOS wont, and usually at a better price than TOS does when they do fill. Schwab negotiated commissions and their rate is VERY good. They dont charge the outraegeous fee for SPX like TOS does not either.

So I like them, but the TOS platform is superior to all others.
 

Marcas

Active member
I can confirm. SSE does support multileg options. I don't use it anymore as they don't (or didn't) have Linux version. As I remember platform was highly configurable, better (relative) than TOS. Yes, there are some features missing for options traders, but, at least back then, Schwab wanted to channel options guys to separate platform X-Options (or something like that).

The big Q is if TOS will be maintained by Schwab. I can't imagine it wont, makes 'convoluted sense'. If Schwab provides better commissions it will be no brainier for many traders to switch. If Schwab decide to get rid of TOS anyway, I think there will be plenty of offers from other brokers.
Is there any transition timeline set?
 

status1

Active member
Schwab does have some conditional order placement capability but I have never used it because I want to get in and out quick
Not sure what kind of condition you are looking for but on the website there is a link to create an advanced order and you have a choice of contingent on price, time or volume and you can have multiple legs

The SSE I have used even less and I don't see any multi leg conditional capbility just for a single order or at least it's not readily apparent
 

garyw

Active member
Gold Member
Speaking with their Derivatives specialist today and their StreetSmartEdge expert yesterday, both informed me their conditional orders only work for single leg option orders. Was inquiring if they were able to handle my position exit OCO orders which contain conditional orders for both good and stop-like exits for multi-legged option positions.
Maybe Tim has figured out how to do things their staff can't. It would not surprise me from my limited exposure so far.
TOS has spoiled me with their feature rich platform that I have become accustomed to.
 

Tim

Member
Aeromir Expert
Heres a couple screenshots from Schwab SSE. These are from the "All in One" trade tool which you launch first. The tabs circled in red are pre-defined types of orders that when selected bring up the appropriate single or multi-leg orders. then you can select the options and strikes for the legs.

Each tab can be customized.In this way SSE lets you build from a select list of orders (second image). Once you have selected one, you can add or remove legs manually if you want to, it will even let you build non-sensical multi-leg orders, and submit them.

In the third image I tried to show how you can build conditional orders with multiple criteria, although I dont use this feature much.

Lastly, Schwab lets you make "walk" orders, where the price (for example) increases every x seconds or minutes automatically via a cancel/replace up to or down to a limit. I have found this pretty cool to get an order to fill although I usually do this manually. TOS does not allow this kind of order.

So I hope to show some things SSE can do. Again however, I feel the TOS platform is still superior. I hope (and expect) Schwab will keep TOS when they integrate TD with them. They have a history of supporting acquired platforms, when they bought OptionsXpress. I periodically call Schwab and implore them to keep it but it is still too early in the process for anyone to know.




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status1

Active member
TOS has spoiled me with their feature rich platform that I have become accustomed to

I think you are right about that
I think what Tim showed you on the SSE was the conditional order for a single leg or one part of the trade
Yes you can set up a multiple leg order but when you switch to contingent order it defaults to a single order so I don't see a way around that
You can set up a covered call because you can set the the price of the stock and once that is trigered you can have the call option sent in but I don't see a way to set up a conditional order for a multi leg

On the website you can set up a multi leg order and than set up a contingent order for the underlying so let's say when SPX reaches the price you set than your multi leg order is trigered at the limit price you set
 
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