Cobra Trading Review



In this review we’re going to cover Cobra Trading, Cobra is a direct access broker. What does that mean? Well it means they deal direct with market makers thus eliminating the middle man and his resulting fee.

Aren’t all brokers’ direct access? No most brokerage houses are retail brokers; they’re the middleman between you and the market makers. This enables them to sell smaller trade sizes which would be inefficient for a direct access broker to deal with.

What are the advantages to going direct access? Well you get cheaper trading costs, but only if you trade in volume. The other main reason is quicker execution, when you’re trading in high volume every second counts so dealing direct means you get a much quicker execution with less slippage.

In this review we’re going to look at Cobra Trading, one of the smaller direct access brokers. We’re going to check out their platform, trading costs and level of service. So keep reading to see if Cobra is the right broker for you.

Fees & Commissions  

Equities .005/share when you trade 0-250,000 shares per month*
Options $5.00+ .95 per contract
Annual IRA Fee $30.00
*.004/share when you trade 250,000+ shares per month


 Website & Sign-Up

Cobra-Trading-Website

 

Signing up for an account with Cobra couldn’t be easier, they give you a number of options including doing it by post, but I chose to complete my application online, even then you have the choice of digitally signing your forms or printing them off to sign manually.

Once the process is complete which takes no more than 10 minutes providing you have all your documents to hand, you’re ready to fund your account. This can be done by wire transfer or the more traditional ACH, you can even send a check if you want. Funds take about 3 days to clear into your account and then you’re ready to trade.

Trading Tools

Cobra offer 5 trading platforms, yes five, so you should be able to find a platform that suits your trading style here. Most of their platforms have been developed for use by professional traders and come complete with a full range of trading tools and news feeds.

 

Cobra Online: Free

The first and most basic platform is Cobra Online, this is their standard web based trading platform. You get dynamic, real time customizable charts and technical indicators along with Level 1 data as standard. This is a very basic platform that is only really suitable for beginners.

Omni Pro $100: per month*

Then we have OmniPro, this is an automated platform for all you black box traders out there. Its comes complete with real time charting a customizable interface, live news feeds and a complete set of risk management tools. A full explanation of Black box trading is beyond the scope of this article so we’ll jump straight to the next platform which is.

CobraIQ $125: per month*

CobraIQ was developed from the ground up to address the needs of active traders. IQ is a comprehensive trading system that integrates real-time trading with powerful analytics and advanced charting.

Real Tick: $250 per month*

The next platform is RealTick, this is a professional style platform created by Townsend Analytics. RealTick delivers real-time market data, news and analytics, sophisticated trading tools, unrivalled access to exchanges, ECNs and risk management tools.

Sterling Trader Pro: $250 per month*

The final platform is Sterling Trader Pro, this is a multi-purpose front-end trading platform that is equipped with a list of distinctive features that were specifically designed with the input of experienced traders. You get an advanced highly customizable order entry system, advanced charting and real time profit and loss.

*Platform fees are reduced for active traders who trade the required amount each month.

  • OmniPro: 50,000 shares per month
  • CobraIQ: 75,000 shares per month
  • RealTick: 200,000 shares per month
  • Sterling: 200,000 share per month

 

Pros

  • Professional style trading platforms
  • Excellent customer service
  • Fast Execution

 Cons

  • Expensive platform fees
  • Free Platform is very limited
  • Poor Education and training materials
  • Annual IRA Fee $30.00

Summary

Cobra Trading know their market and know it well, this is not a broker for beginners or intermediate traders. They’re only interested in the big ticket traders with loads of experience and a large sum of money to invest.

If you’re a part time trader looking to manage your IRA account or just starting out you’re much better off looking to join a retail broker that offers much more comprehensive training and education.

For beginners I would recommend either Zecco or TradeKing both of whom have excellent training and education as well as world class trading communities for you to learn from.

If you’re more of an intermediate trader I would recommend either optionsXpress or OptionsHouse who have excellent trading platforms complete with more sophisticated options tools along with more intermediate training and education.

Cobra Trading is only suitable for big ticket traders who trade regularly and in high volume. If that’s you then you can expect a superb if slightly expensive platform with excellent customer service and rapid execution times.




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