Generic Trade is the first online futures broker I have seen to create obvious transparency for traders when they go to the company’s website to get more details. The website is somewhat basic and straight to the point - no bells, no whistles.
Rates on other markets and futures options are also at the low end of the scale compared to other discount brokers. The small retail trader will have a dificult time finding a better commission rate, but large and very active traders can find slightly better rates at a few online brokers.
The other trading platform is the desktop version called Firetip. This trading platform works very well and has most of the features traders want. There is a $59 monthly fee for Firetip, which you have to factor into your trading costs. Many brokers charge a platform fee and some waive it if you do enough trades each month. The $59 monthly fee does cover the exchange fees for realtime quotes from the exchanges. That alone can often cost well over $100 a month for multiple markets.
Traders who choose to use the Firetip platform also have access to the online platform. This is a nice feature where you can check futures quotes and charts, get portfolio updates and place trades from any computer with internet access.
Generic Trade does have 24 hour support, and that along with good technology and trade execution is probably all that most traders need.
Generic Trade has no minimum account balances (to open or maintain), no minimum trading activity and no account maintenance charges. They offer the same rates and services to all clients, which is quite unusual.
From reviewing their website and speaking with Marc Nathan at Generic Trade, I can tell they are trying to do something different. They are setting themselves apart from the competition by offering a straightforward and fair deal to all traders, regardless of account size and experience. In reality, I think they are just getting back to the basics that most unjaded futures trader would expect.