Real-time streaming quotes

Real-time Streaming Prices: available to every private investor since the rise of the internet. But what exactly is it and how does it work? The explanation and costs of this at a glance.


In the past, when everything was still slow… you also had patience. The whole world turned slowly, and so did the prices. Private investors looked at the prices via the NOS teletext pages. These passed with a delay of 15 minutes. To place an order, one called the institution, contact person or intermediary with which one had a securities account. Here one could request the real-time rate, or the rate that was available at that moment. And based on that, an order was placed. And then we had to wait to see whether the order had been executed. One could wait for this by simply waiting for the mail and looking at the account statement. Or they called the institution, contact person or intermediary again, provided the order number and were then told whether the order had been executed and at what rate. And so people sometimes spent a whole day placing one order. Because in the past, there was no hurry…

And then the internet came along

And internet was fast. At least, at the time. By our standards, the internet was very slow back then. With the internet people suddenly had more options. Financial institutions started offering online brokerage accounts. It was now possible to place your order online. And that was handy! The disadvantage was that people were still dependent on the slow price display: it was still 15 minutes behind. So not really real time.

Real-time streaming quotes

With the help of Java, real-time streaming prices could be developed: a window is visible with various shares, the prices of which change continuously. The amount of shares traded, the current price, the bid and ask price, highest and lowest daily price and opening and closing price can be followed in real time via this screen. In the beginning, real-time prices could only be followed for a fee. And it really wasn’t cheap. Later, various sites came up with trial versions: people could register and use them for free for a number of days, to later determine whether they would purchase this application or not. Binckbank started offering real-time streaming prices for free if people opened a securities account with the bank: this resulted in the fact that hundreds of accounts were opened, ten euros were deposited into them and they could therefore view the real-time streaming prices for free. And since 2008, various sites have offered, including free real-time streaming quotes on their website. So available to everyone.