To highlight a problem in the bond market, which lacks a uniform trading system like the stock market, I opened up three of my accounts where I buy corporate bonds and checked the ask prices for a 2.25% Public Service of Colorado First Mortgage Bond maturing on 9/15/22.
FINRA Page: Bond Detail (prospectus linked at FINRA Page)
My one bond purchase this morning is shown in the trade section.
YTM at Total Cost (98.252) = 2.587%
This is another return of my money purchase. My trade was the first one today.
I already own one of those bonds, but have not go around to discussing that purchase. I bought another one this morning in a different account.
I first looked at the Vanguard Order Book:
The best ask was at 98.315. A total of 546 bonds were available at that price but the minimum order was 10 bonds. I did not want 10. I wanted just 1. The best price for 1 bond was 98.648 and up to 500 bonds were available at that price.
I next opened the Fidelity Order Book:
The best price shown was 98.239 requiring a 10 bond minimum. The best 1 bond ask price was 98.25.
I then went to IB which quoted me 28.15 for 1 bond. I entered an order slightly above that price since IB will warn me when my 1 bond order is not going to be sent to the right exchange. I bought 1 more bond and paid 98.152:
The IB commission is the same as Fidelity.
I do not use any of my other brokers due to higher commission rates.