CenterPoint Securities Review
Appealing to hyperactive traders who place hundreds to thousands of trades per year is no easy task. Direct access brokers like CenterPoint Securities, SpeedTrader, and Cobra Trading offer multiple platforms and pricing structures but struggle to provide the same value as a broker like Interactive Brokers.
CenterPoint Securities, a division of Precision Securities LLC, has been serving professional traders for eight years. CenterPoint Securities targets the small group of traders who trade thousands of shares each month, including day traders and scalpers.
- CenterPoint Securities offers multiple direct-access platforms; including DAS Trader Pro, Sterling Trader Pro, and CenterPoint Trader (a lite version of Sterling Trader Pro).
- As a small firm, CenterPoint Securities has a responsive support team that traders can get to know on a first-name basis.
- In certain situations, short locates may be more widely available with CenterPoint Securities than its competitors.
- Like most other niche professional-focused brokers, the mobile experience is very poor.
- Traders who don’t meet monthly volume minimums will have to pay platform fees, often exceeding $100.
Commissions & Fees
CenterPoint Securities offers multiple pricing plans and subscription fees that can be confusing to investors. Because of monthly subscription fees, CenterPoint Securities quickly becomes costly for low-volume investors.
- Traders can choose either per-trade pricing, starting at $5.95 per trade plus/minus routing fees, or per-share pricing, starting at $.004/share, which is cheaper than starting prices for SpeedTrader ($.0044/share) and LightSpeed ($.0045/share).
- Margin rates are variable and based on the Banque Centrale Du Luxembourg.
- Platform fees are additional and come bundled with market data, which is another cost passed onto the trader.
- Traders are fully responsible for their market center routing fees or rebates. Adding liquidity yields a rebate, while taking liquidity (e.g., market orders) incurs an additional fee from the market center.
|Stock Trade Fee (per trade)||$5.95|
|ETF Trade Fee||$5.95|
|Options Base Fee||N/A|
|Options Per Contract Fee||$0.00|
|Mutual Fund Trade Fee||N/A|
|Broker Assisted Trades Fee||N/A|
Platforms & Tools
CenterPoint Securities three platforms; DAS Trader Pro, Sterling Trader Pro, and CenterPoint Trader. CenterPoint Trader is a lite version of Sterling Trader Pro and offers fewer routes and API capabilities at a lower price than Sterling Trader Pro. For our testing, we used DAS Trader Pro, which left us wanting more.
- In addition to CenterPoint Trader, traders can directly access multiple platforms such as DAS Trader Pro and Sterling Trader Pro.
- Advanced order functionality, including hotkey mapping options, are robust.
- While DAS Trader Pro offers basic day trading features, traders who desire advanced tools and a variety of charting options will be disappointed.
- Traders will pay a monthly fee of $120 to utilize the DAS Trader Pro platform unless they trade more than 300,000 shares. Also, traders will pay a $15 fee for a regional quotes data package, bringing the monthly total to $135. Pink sheet data is too extra and costs $40 a month.
|Desktop Platform (Windows)||Yes|
|Watch Lists - Total Fields||30|
|Charting - Drawing Tools||9|
|Charting - Indicators / Studies||36|
|Option Chains - Total Columns||17|
|Platforms & Tools|
Like most direct access brokers, CenterPoint Securities does not emphasize research, rendering it nonexistent.
- There are no advanced portfolio analysis and backtesting capabilities.
|Research - Stocks||Yes|
|Stock Research - Reports||0|
|Research - ETFs||No|
|Research - Mutual Funds||No|
|Research - Pink Sheets / OTCBB||No|
|Research - Fixed Income||No|
|Research - Futures||No|
|Research - Forex||No|
Similar to other direct access brokers, mobile trading receives little emphasis at CenterPoint Securities. Although mobile trading is available, the experience is lackluster compared to apps offered by top Day Trading Brokers.
- Basic trading can be conducted on the mobile app.
- I experienced app crashes and frozen screens in my testing, making me question the reliability of the app. Functionality aside, the mobile experience feels bare. Apart from mobile charting, which offers 14 technical indicators, the app lacks features across the board and is in desperate need for a redesign.
- While we did not test Sterling Trader’s mobile app, one is offered for both iOS and Android.
- Compared to Interactive Brokers, the mobile experience is terrible.
Mobile Apps Comparison
|Apple Watch App||No|
|Watch List Syncing||No|
|Charting - After Hours||Yes|
Offering of Investments
CenterPoint Securities offers everything active traders need to trade at a high volume.
- Full direct-market routing to over 30 routing options.
- Short locate capabilities with multiple venues for liquidity.
- CenterPoint Securities concentrates on professional stock and options trading, meaning there aren’t products like IRAs or bonds available.
|OTCBB / Pink Sheets||Yes|
|Complex Options Max Legs|
|Bonds (US Treasury)||No|
|Mutual Funds (Total)||0|
As a direct-access broker, CenterPoint Securities caters best to professional traders who trade frequently enough to avoid minimum fees and who seek multiple routing options alongside personalized customer service.
Customer service aside, Interactive Brokers offers a superior product across the board, from cheaper pricing to an excellent trading platform (including mobile app), and robust research.
2020 Review Methodology
For the StockBrokers.com tenth annual best online brokers review published in January 2020, a total of 3,540 data points were collected over six months and used to score brokers. This makes StockBrokers.com home to the largest independent database on the web covering the online broker industry.
Participation is required to be included. Each broker completed an in-depth data profile and provided executive time (live in person or over the web) for an annual update meeting. Our rigorous data validation process yields an error rate of less than .001% each year, providing site visitors quality data they can trust. Learn more about how we test.
About the author: Blain Reinkensmeyer As Head of Research at StockBrokers.com, Blain Reinkensmeyer has 18 years of trading experience with over 1,000 trades placed during that time. Referenced as a leading expert on the US online brokerage industry, Blain has been quoted in the WSJ, The New York Times, Forbes, and the Chicago Tribune, among others.