Secure, real-time share trading via the Internet is a reality with the launch of a locally developed application called DFMtrade, which has been licensed exclusively to share broker DF Mainland Securities.
The software, which was developed by NET New Zealand over five months using Visual Basic, has been launched simultaneously in Auckland and Wellington this week. ACT leader Richard Prebble launched the software, using the Internet to demonstrate how the application lets users buy and sell shares.
What differentiates DFMtrade from other stock exchange computer software is that it allows users to actual share transactions to be made in real-time, working with current prices. Other packages on the market, including locally developed Iguana, only allow access to share prices and records.
The client software, which is available form DF Mainland's Internet home page (http://www.dfmainland.co.nz) relies upon a current Internet connection, but runs independently from the Web browser.
The software includes a price ticker which displays real-time share prices, a Real-Time Price Grid which allows the customer to select and display real-time bid, ask, last and change statistics, and a Big Movers Grid which shows statistics of the most active shares in the current day's trading.
Changing prices for individual shares are also displayed on two graphs, one representing price changes for the last 150 trades, the other representing changes within the last 150 days.
Every time a customer communicates using DFMtrade, they must enter an authorisation code, and transactions over the Internet are encrypted using a proprietary encryption system which has been modelled on systems currently in use by large financial institutions for transferring funds over telephone lines.
When processed, customers are charged the sum of the consideration and the brokerage to their account. If the amount of the transaction is not present in the account, the transaction is held for 48 hours, then cancelled if funds do not become available.
According to DF Mainland spokesperson Matt Houtman, DFMtrade offers customers a simple means of carrying out share transactions using the Internet. "We want to compete with other brokers on quality of service, not on price. If you are a client of a certain broker, we are just offering you an option that for the same cost gives you a lot more services," Houtman says.