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One last price comparison. On the same issue as the opening post, ET is now asking 99.644, and Fido, too, has bumped up their price to 99.417 (from the previous 99.333). So, one further buying rule needs to be laid down. Timing matters.

As with stocks, bonds are constantly being re-priced through the trading day, sometimes up, sometimes down, from previously. I have yet to figure out when in the day might be the most advantageous time to buy. But I do know that if you can squeak in your order when no one else seems to be bidding, often enough you can end the day in-the-money on the trade --even including commish-- for having caught a low price.

For sure, if you're buying small, you probably won't get a price as low as the big boys. But that's not a certainty. Sometimes, when I've gone back and reviewed T&S, I see that my tiny, little, 2-lot execution was the low for the day.

OTOH, sometimes the underlying desk isn't in a mood to co-operate and keeps pennying you back on an order. ("Price has increased.") Sometimes, I've gone back and forth two or three times with a desk that kept backing from its published offer and kept asking for more money. Sometimes, if I really wanted the issue, I paid up. Other times, I've backed away, and on a later day gotten the fill I should have had in the first place.

Same-same with mins. Sometimes, an underlying desk is imposing a larger minimum-purchase than I want to make. Often enough, another desk will sell fewer, but at a higher price which can be discovered by pulling the book. But what's really funny is that sometimes, a lower min --but unpublished offer-- has the same priced as the national best bid/best offer. So that becomes another buying rule. Pull the book before you write your order.

There are probably a dozen other buying tips and tricks that others have discovered over the years. It might be useful for us to gather them in one place. So, post.
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