Direct Market Access
Direct Market Access (DMA) is a service offered by some stockbrokers that enables sophisticated private investors to place buy and sell orders directly on the London Stock Exchange order books. With DMA private investors can level the playing field and trade like market professionals.
What is DMA?
Traditionally a broker has sent an investor's order to a specialist market maker known as Retail Service Provider (RSP), however DMA now provides you with a choice. DMA allows you to take greater control of your trades by using a broker to place your orders directly on the central market along with all the other market participants. A relatively new service for investors in the U.K. but a benefit which has been enjoyed by investors for sometime in other major markets around the world.
The key benefits of DMA include:
- Equal playing field
Every order is of equal status on the order book, prioritised only in terms of price and time.
Orders are visible to the entire market allowing all market participants full contribution to central market liquidity.
- Depth of order book
The order book shows the number of buyers versus the number of sellers and at what price they are willing to trade.
- Set your own price
Limit orders can be entered at whatever price you choose and will be available to the entire market.
- Tighter spreads
As limit orders are displayed publicly rather than held privately, market spreads become tighter, benefiting the order placer, who has a higher chance of getting executed at the price and the market as a whole which has a tighter public reference price to work from.
- Auction participation
You can participate in the pre-market and post-market auctions where the highest or lowest price often occurs.
- Peace of mind
Regulation and market supervision by the Exchange.
The order book is always available during trading hours.
Background to trading
Gain a better understanding of the differences between non-order book trading and order book trading. Find out more.
Level 2 market data
Level 2 market data provides the most comprehensive and in depth set of data available on trading activity. Learn about level 2 market data in order to trade more effectively via DMA.
DMA Interactive Guide
To see the real benefits of DMA, why not try it out for yourself? The DMA Interactive Guide provides you with an opportunity to understand the order book. The DMA Interactive Guide is based on historical level 2 market data, providing you with an accurate representation of a DMA service in a risk-free environment.
Launch DMA Interactive Guide
Please note: For real DMA use, you will need to contact a broker who provides a DMA Service
Please ensure that you are fully aware of associated rules and procedures before trading on the London Stock Exchange: