Personal Finance & Money Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for people who want to be financially literate. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I know that stocks below $1.00 can be traded to 4 decimal places, but is that possible for stocks above $1.00? On a list order transactions, one can find prices like $2.2801 despite most ecn brokers forbidding the practice.

share|improve this question
How may shares do you commonly trade? Does that hundredth of a cent impact your decision? – JoeTaxpayer Aug 24 '12 at 0:55
What exchange/ECN? That highly depends on the market place. – hroptatyr Aug 24 '12 at 14:10
Not sure. I guess my question is more like "is there an exchange that allows the placing of orders at a fraction of a cent?" – wonton Aug 25 '12 at 1:00
Aren't share prices in the US quoted in eighths of a dollar as in "Stock A was down one and three-eighths yesterday and is up one and five-eighths this morning"? – Dilip Sarwate Sep 23 '12 at 22:06
@DilipSarwate - All US-based stock exchanges were decimalized on or before April 9, 2001, by order of the SEC. – fennec Sep 24 '12 at 22:57
up vote 1 down vote accepted

I'm not sure fennec's answer is the right one.

This happens too frequently to me in thinly traded stocks. I will have a bid of say 2400 shares @ $1.06 outstanding as the listed high bid price and quantity. Suddenly a trade for 200 shares will execute at 1.0601 leaving my offer untouched.

Once in a blue moon is one thing; 25 to 30 percent of the trades and always at $0.0001 above or below my price is another. I suspect someone is "stepping in front" of me. A broker practice forbidden but which seems to happen all too frequently.

For example watch SPPR. Yesterday (10/4/12) at the close, Scottrader listed the high for SPPR as 1.0701 and the low as 1.0699. (Note: Many sites round the data to 0.01; don't be misled.)

share|improve this answer
This is exactly what I'm asking about. – wonton Oct 6 '12 at 21:24
I haven't been able to find where you report such activity. The exchange or the SEC. No links are obvious at either place. @fennec – Jerry Oct 9 '12 at 15:45

It's possible that if someone bought, say, 300 shares, they were able to buy 200 of them at one price, but then had to pay a slightly higher price (say, $0.01 higher) for the next 100. Then the price reported for those shares would be the average amount, and would be fractional.

share|improve this answer
Yes @wonton , to add to this, the averaging is what is reported on the ticker tape, as there are many other situations where an average could happen. I recently did call a market maker about this and was told how it happens – CQM Sep 23 '12 at 17:15

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.