Over the last couple days, I test drove Think or Swim’s trading demo platform, a.k.a. Paper Money. I’ve decided to use this application for my paper trading experimental stage. During this testing period, I want to learn several things: 1) Try out specific trading strategies – swing, momentum, etc.; 2) Explore overall life logistics (juggling with work, etc.); 3) Master the technical aspects of trading (making orders, managing multiple positions, etc.); and 4) Check out various tools and applications to monitor and screen stocks. Here are my observations of TOS’s Paper Money (PM):

  • PM can be used in both desktop and web based modes.
  • To start, it gives you two $100,000 accounts, one IRA and one Margin – the amounts in these accounts can be changed and reset.
  • Trades are executed based on real-time prices, taking an average between bid and ask.
  • Orders are filled immediately, or if a limit order is made, when the price is achieved.
  • With unfunded accounts, price quotes are delayed 20 minutes, but once you have money in your TOS account, the quotes are given real time.
  • So far, if shares are difficult to borrow, there is a good chance that short orders will be rejected, simulating real life.
  • PM includes commissions, and allows you to learn the difference between TOS’s Flat Rate and Fee per Share price structure.
  • You can use Stop, Stop Limit, Order Cancelling Orders, Options, etc. orders.
  • These types of orders have executed well so far.

Based on my rules discussed here, I’m ready to start on Wednesday with my fake but realistic paper trading simulation practice doesn’t really count but since I’m tracking it I care about the results adventure.