Day Trade and Keep Your Day Job
By THERESA W. CAREY
A new online brokerage firm, DittoTrade, lets you mimic the trades of professionals—and get the same prices they do.
A new online broker is opening with an interesting twist. Aside from the usual online features, DittoTrade lets you buy and sell right alongside an experienced trader.
DittoTrade's CEO, Joseph Fox, has prior experience operating an online brokerage firm—he was a founder of Web Street Securities, which was a top-rated broker in Barron's annual ranking back in the late 1990s and was acquired by E*Trade (ticker: ETFC) in 2001. Fox decided during 2008's financial meltdown that he wanted to go back into the business, mainly because he believed individual traders were getting clobbered by institutional traders using algorithms and high-frequency techniques.
His fledgling firm (www.dittotrade.com
) opened its virtual doors in a beta test last October, but will soon be more visible, thanks to a new marketing campaign (and, no doubt, articles like this one). Fox says the idea is to let average investors, who usually have better things to do than stare at a computer screen, benefit from the skills of people who are in the market every day.
Upon logging in, you are presented with a standard-looking account balance page with streaming quotes. The "Trading Pit" is where customers can place orders on their own; like tradeMonster, when you enter a position on DittoTrade, you are encouraged to set a stop-loss and a profit target. Things start to differ, however, if you connect to a Master Trader.