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Currently I am trying to sell some options on ThinkorSwim that have a bid x ask spread of $8 x $8.5. When I remove my ask, the spread widens so that the ask is in the $9 range so I am fairly confident that the $8.5 ask is me. However, my ask is $8.45, yet thinkorswim always reflects an ask that is $0.05 above what I entered. Do they enter a price slightly higher than what I will get paid so that they can keep the spread as a commission?

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Brokerages are not required to place your order directly on an exchange as long as they fill it at a price that is the same as, or better than, the National Best Bid and Offer (NBBO). This is the highest bid and lowest ask for the security across all exchanges. Many brokerages will fill orders (especially smaller options orders) from their own inventory.

SEC Regulation NMS does not allow the brokerage to fill your order at a better price than your limit and pocket the difference.

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