Suppose the lowest offer on stock S is $10. This offer is not the market maker's offer. A trader places a market order to buy stock S on the NYSE. Can the NYSE market maker "intercept" this market order and sell stock S at $9.99 using the market maker's own inventory, bypassing the lowest existing offer?

  • 1
    Wouldn't you love to get your stock cheaper than you expected?
    – Aganju
    Apr 19, 2021 at 16:33
  • Any trader, including the market maker, can become the market on either side (even both sides) of the NBBO quote by offering a higher bid or a lower ask. I can't source it but I do not believe that a market maker can arbitrarily step in front of NBBO to pick off a market order. Jan 14, 2022 at 19:46

1 Answer 1


A market maker can change his bid price to match the ask, but the trade can only happen when an ask price matches his bid price. That's the nature of the order-matching systems used. The prices you see are only what the price of the stock was at last trade, but that doesn't mean one or more market makers haven't adjusted their bid prices either down or up from there in the meantime. So you can have quotes that are either higher or lower than bid and ask.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .