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Old 07-01-2011, 05:53 PM   #1
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A couple questions about options permissions and different trading platforms

Hey guys,

I just have a few questions about options trading and what platforms you guys think are good compared to price.

I have used TD Ameritrade for five years and have never really considered other platforms until recently. I am an Apex member and hold a few mutual funds and I trade stocks. I have done a lot of research into options trading and I want to add it to my trading strategy. I applied to be able to purchase options and they will only let me do covered calls (Tier 1). I understand that covered calls are "safer" because I would be selling calls on stock that I already own, BUT, I really prefer to have the leverage of buying a call and keeping all of the gains if it goes above the strike price rather than selling a call on a stock that I own and then having my stock called away from me and limiting what I could have gained above the strike price. I know that covered calls could be great in a stock that is just moving sideways, but with today's market roller coaster, it's hard to find a stock that is sideways. Personally, I feel that it is my money to lose if I make lame-brained calls or puts, so let me swim....I can lose just as much money in stocks so I guess I just don't understand why they limit one and not the other (though...if I have to ask, that's probably good enough reason. lol)

Ok, after all of that, I have looked into different platforms and I have heard that Zecco prices options trading at 4.95 + .65 per contract. I have also heard that they are more lenient on options permissions (maybe it would be easier to be approved for Tier 2). I am curious if anyone uses Zecco and what they think about it.

I don't plan on being the next Warren Buffett, but I do plan on investing my money wisely and making it work for me. If it is necessary for me to start of with training wheels (covered calls), then so be it, I just think it requires a lot more money to make money that way.

Thanks for any input (and patience! )
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Old 07-03-2011, 04:05 PM   #2
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I use thinkorswim, no "tiers" of options trading, just options enabled or not. To get enabled with a funded account takes all of sending in the form asking to be enable to trade options. Bonus, since TD bought them, you're probably familiar with most of the stuff on the trading platform.
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