Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Question on Level II Quotes

Level II quotes on the SPY.  I feel like I should know this, but I have no idea how to use this for trading purposes.  

In this example, the left column has more bids at 83.41.  The right column has ask prices at 83.42 and above, but they are fewer orders in number.  Is this a very short term bullish indicator?

How do we use these for day-trading?


  1. The ETF's are tough to read because the volume is so huge, and it's easier to look at individual issues.

    What you would want to see as a bull would be say "100K shares at 82.20" or as a Bear "100K at 82.55"
    Looking at your L2 data, it looks like they might be giving you Local data(meaning data from your brokerage), you may want to see if you can adjust where the data is coming from.

    I wish I screen Captured, I'd give you what my spy shows me.

    Right now the bid ask is 82.14-82.15
    but I get 106K shares at 82.10, and 75K shares at 82.17. Then like 20-40K at other levels.
    The L2 data doesn't show the Market orders, but what you are looking for is an OBVIOUS bias.

    of course this morning we are trading fairly neutral, so there is limited Bias at this point, and the volume is showing that.. and to be honest there could be some down bias by volume. but that doesn't have anything to do with the L2 Data... but when you start putting numerous things together you can get an honest sense of market direction.

  2. "OBVIOUS bias" In you example the obvious bias is bullish, right? (I guess not so obvious to me. Sorry. I just want to make sure I understand the concept.)

  3. My example was not an example of "OBVIOUS Bias"
    The example was the Reality of today, which has been Neutral to slightly Bearish.

    Ok, In July when all the banks were on a steady slide you would see like 100K shares on say RF sitting 10Cents above the Ask holding the stock down. When your usuall .01 level would be 1K shares. You could just see that the sellers were serious in holding it down.

    and the opposite happens on the up side. But sometimes it's just one buyer, and just a huge block won't mean anything.. this is tough to communicate, but you want to see the trend either up or down, and that setup, and it's very bullish or bearish..
    but remember those orders are the Limit orders in the system, and that doesn't include what the quants are doing or what the market orders are doing.

  4. You should post something. you still have a residual 40-50 reads today, you should give them something to read... Even a cartoon or something.