Systems to trade US stocks


I have recently been looking at what systems there are available to trade stocks on the US markets, predominantly on the Nasdaq.

All I can say is that for a newcomer to US stock trading it is a minefield and I would appreciate input from those people who have such experience in trading these areas.

My requirements for trading the Nasdaq was to have a package that provided the following:-

Nasdaq Level 2 including visibility of market makers and access to the Island book and other ECNs if possible
A good charting/analytical package
Real time feed
A trading platform that allows me to have an account with an ECN/broker of my choice.

I am looking to trade the Nasdaq using Level 2 alongside a decent charting package through a fast trading platform using an ECN or a broker. (If it wasn't clear)

As you may have guessed I am still finding my way here.

However although I have found many avenues to take with packages such as esignal, tenfore, tradestation 2000i, real tick3, and EXPtrader, I would appreciate input from those people who are already there, had the pain of finding the optimum package, and are either trading in this manner or something similar.

With the many data feeds and software packages I am somewhat concerned about signing up to a lemon.

Many thanks to those who contribute.

There are quite a few packages out there for trading the Nasdaq and they're all found on the web.In just a few minutes of surfing i found these.
Thanx for the reply Naz.

However I was hoping to stimulate a response from those people who already trade the Nasdaq, to find out what they use and how they rate it.

If there are people that have already tried certain packages and like / do not like them for certain reasons I would appreciate it if they could post these thoughts so those of us who want to get it right first time do not find out the hard way.

I realise that some of it will be down to personal preference but in some cases (esignal for example) the best deals are negotiated if there is a commitment to a year in advance (I am being quoted $160/month or the equivalent of $89 per month if I commit for a year).

Stumping up cash in advance is great if you have a number of recommendations and you are confident of its performance but to do it from cold with only the demos and the web site to go from can be a little dangerous imo. (Updata Trader Pro II for example)

I am obviously familiar with your setup Naz but there must be a number of people that have at least walked away from your course and are more advanced than me in determining good / bad packages available.

I use RealTick3 and never had any problems after three years of trading. You can find some background info on platforms and brokers on my website at I would also recommend the broker link at where every direct access broker is listed along with their trading platform.

The only drawback with RT3 is the price which is $250/month but if you are trading 25 round trips a month the broker should provide it free.