Understanding Execution & Routing
After you place an order, the work really begins. In order to provide an exceptional execution, there are a number of factors to be considered, including: execution price, opportunities for price improvement, market depth, order size, the type of security, speed, accuracy, and system availability.
In 2001, the Securities and Exchange Commission began to require brokerages to disclose their order-routing practices. The SEC also created a set of criteria for measuring order execution at the market centers that receive orders from broker-dealers. At Schwab, we work diligently to meet and exceed these requirements, and to ensure we work toward our clients' best interests.
In arranging for the execution of Non-Directed Orders for equities and listed options, Schwab seeks out industry-leading execution services and access to the best-performing markets. Schwab routes orders for execution to unaffiliated broker-dealers, who may act as market maker or manage execution of the orders in other market venues.
Schwab considers a number of factors in evaluating execution quality among markets and firms, including execution price and opportunities for price improvement, market depth and order size, the trading characteristics of the security, speed and accuracy of executions, the availability of efficient and reliable order handling systems, liquidity and automatic execution guarantees, and service levels and the cost of executing orders at a particular market or firm. Price improvement occurs when an order is executed at a price more favorable than the displayed national best bid or offer. Schwab regularly monitors the execution quality obtained to ensure orders are routed to market venues that have provided high-quality executions over time.
Regulation NMS and Rule 611—Detailed information on the new regulation and how it may affect you.