Im confused by the video showing ticker data is not the same as individual trade data.

From another video a tick is an executed buy/sell trade, normally comes with time, trade size, and price. Isn't that an individual trade data?

When I search for tick chart, it says "Tick charts create a new bar following a tick—the previous set number of trades—either up or down.". Now a tick consist of multiple trades?

So is a tick/ticker an individual trade?

1 Answer 1


Individual trade data reports every trade at every price. It's a continuous line (other than gaps) from the start of the day until the end of the day).

Data providers take individual trade data and create a time bar where each bar represents the identical amount of time throughout the day. If it's one minute bars then it's the O-H-L-C of every trade in the past minute. This is a time based chart.

A Tick Chart is one where a new bar is created every time a set number of trades occur. So if the preset is 500, a bar is created every time 500 trades occur, regardless of their size. It removes time from the equation. You could have one bar or many bars during one minute, depending on the amount of trading activity.

  • The second video, it says "each trade is called a tick, is because every time a transaction occur it is broadcast on the ticker tape". I understood that ticker tape is in the past, but a tick means individual trade? The word tick, ticker data do create confusion...
    – Consy
    Commented Jan 7, 2020 at 14:45
  • Yes, it's confusing, especially the first video which I listened to a few minutes of and had no clear idea what their point was. I remember the days of the ticker tape but I don't know what ticker data is other than that reference. I have come across two usages of the word tick. The more common one is the minimum price movement of a security. If it trades in one cent increments, the tick is a penny. Some people use tick as the price change between two consecutive trades. Commented Jan 8, 2020 at 22:35
  • continued: There can be multiple uses of financial terminology, some of them outdated. For example, way back when some used the expression buying naked calls for a person who bought calls. Today it's just call buying calls and having naked calls means selling them uncovered. Commented Jan 8, 2020 at 22:35

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