Very frustrated with pricing and order execution

So this morning I wanted to buy a stock which the website was at 37.6p. I placed a limit order above that to be careful about what price I got and it didn’t execute. I therefore put in a very small market order to see what it went through at … 41.6p. So now sitting at a loss on that. I reset the larger order at 38.6p and it just sits there unfilled with the price listed as 37.7 - 37.8. I’ve now got the order filled at a slightly higher price but how can I place orders when a market order might be filled at several percent above the displayed price and I have no idea what price an order will be filled at?

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What stock are you talking about - your orders sit in a queue on the exchange and get executed if the liquidity is good enough. Users could then view the activity on the exchange and better comment.

It could be the stock you are trading has a high volatility/spread - the indicative price in the app is now last traded price, which in my opinion is not as representative of the movement in value of the security as can flip/flop between bid/ask rather than reflect the overall view/movement of the security in the market over time.

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It may well depend on the stock and how liquid it is - I tend to get quotes elsewhere and use that as a guide but on less traded stocks you are more likely to get a Bid/Offer prices over one iside the range.

Limit orders are a sensible option if the spread is wider although you may need to be patient and wait for it to execute. Sometimes even when selecting Market Order a trade may not be executed for some time if the stock is illiquid.

The order was for 3LUP which is LSE leveraged stock for Uber so not exactly a small stock. To execute market order at 9% over listed price is excessive.

I understand the comment that market orders get executed in a queue, etc but placing an order on a large stock you don’t expect to pay 9% above displayed price or for a limit order to sit unfilled when 3% above displayed price


Its not 9% over listed price. The spread alone is 6% which is quite high.

You need to recognise the 212 app now shows us LTP.

3LUP is fairly illiquid as well, so unless your planning to invest long term and happy with slow execution - why buy it?

The market order executed at 41.6 so 2p over the offer that you’re showing.

Its constantly moving and indicative based on quotes out there. Here is the figure now - the market is open:


You are missing my basic point. It is impossible to place market orders when you essentially have no idea what price they will be executed at. To display a price Xp and execute at 6% or more over that makes decisions impossible and placing limit orders that might sit there all day is a poor alternative

What you are saying is due to an illiquid market not any broker.

Your other options are to go with more expensive brokers - Hargreaves or Interactive Investor, when you place a market order, they also reach out to market makers that will give you a trade quote including their own fees, for you to accept or not.

If you’re looking to buy in at a target price, then you shouldn’t be using market order but limit orders. You will also need to accept if investing in fairly illiquid listings like 3LUP, your trade might not get executed at your price.


As @Dougal1984 says, this is due to the illiquidity of the shares rather than any broker. This sort of thing is par for the course with low volume stocks.

Invest at your peril.


so that explains why I had the same problem with Glencore earlier today as well

What happened with Glencore? This should be infinitely more liquid.


I tried to deal in several stocks this morning. Essentially had the problem of putting a limit buy order in with a price above the displayed price and it sitting there unfilled.

Hey, @WakeMeUp.

Limit Buy orders are intended to be used when the stock price makes a downward movement. For example, if the current price of an instrument is 30.00, then the target price of the Limit Buy Order should be below 30.00. Otherwise, the order will be converted directly to a Market Order.

If you want to set up a certain target price above the current one of a given security, it’s best to use Stop Buy Order. More information about the different types of orders can be found here.

Nevertheless, please drop me a DM with the position ID, and we’ll take a closer look.

Then how can this be? Unless atrocious liquidity.

Most likely liquidity issues, but I’ll need to check the order in question to be certain.

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@Michael.M you say that limit buy orders should be used when there is a downward movement and set with the price below the current market price. That is fine if you know what the market price is and orders will execute if they are at or above it. However, if you have no idea what price a market order will execute at because the price displayed isn’t giving an accurate representation of the market price then a limit order is the safest (and perhaps only) way of placing an order with any security as to execution price. I have replied to your DM and given an example where 20 minutes ago T212 was displaying a price of 474.602 for a stock where I had an unexecuted limit buy set at 477.4 and when I checked a broker website the market bid/offer was actually 489/500. My order wasn’t going to execute because it the market price was significantly different to the price displayed on T212 so I had no idea where to set a price to ensure execution and if I had placed a market order I would not have wanted to pay 500. Thus the only safe option I have is to place limit orders at prices that I am happy at the old theory of using a limit order to get a price lower than the current market is not now the only reason to use limit buys

@Zergui the problem isn’t simply liquidity. I have had buy orders not execute on highly liquid stock when I believe the market price was below the order price. The problem with stock that isn’t liquid isn’t the liquidity. It is that the price displayed on T212 sometimes bears little resemblance to the market price and thus it is impossible to place a market order (because you have no idea what price it will execute at) and a limit order will not execute because the market price is significantly different to the price displayed on T212 (not because of liquidity issues). Yesterday T212 displayed a price of 37.6p and a market order executed at 41.6p (are you prepared to risk execution at 10% above the price being displayed?). Today I have another stock with a displayed price of 474p, an order at 477.4p but looking at a broker website the actual bid/offer was 489/500 so the problem wasn’t liquidity the problem was that I can’t make good decisions based on the price displayed on T212

This has always been the case on most brokers. Exactly why you should not base your investment decisions on the broker but research. The figures are indicative - you’re best looking at the exchange or level 2 data. More so now there is no indicative market bid/ask(as in what people are quoting now as an estimate to trade live) in the 212 app, but last trade price which as you will be aware on an illiquid stock like 3LUP will not be a good barometer, as well as the spread normally being much higher (6%).

Access to L2 is a bit more expensive to provide given much more data points so its up to you if its worth paying for or not to know the depth of the order book. You sometimes get this data on more expensive brokers, but thats life - you get what you pay for. You are seeing the result of having a lower cost order platform, there is less lets say ‘premium’ data available.

212 used to provide Bid/Ask, and I’m an advocate of that. I was slightly disappointed that they think LTP is better - it generally doesn’t matter much on highly liquid stocks, and I’m not sure if its a cost thing - to have less data points.


Yeah i was backing you out buddy. T212 said if the limit order was set above market price, it would be converted to a market order, which is inconsistent with your claim that it wasn’t filled. I was asking staff how that could be :person_shrugging: