Ettrading software sentinel, appear primarily interested in gaining access to the sophisticated trade-execution software rather than in jumping directly into the day-trading business, sources say.
Advertisement In many cases, the talks have centered on the large brokerages buying stakes in the trading companies, though outright purchases also have been discussed, sources say. Though some sets of talks between Wall Street firms and day-trading outfits have gone on for several months, it is unclear whether any deals will be completed.
Advertisement Nonetheless, the mere existence of discussions reflects a dramatic turnaround in mainstream Wall Street's attitude toward day-trading brokerages, which offer individual investors access to and training on extremely fast-paced trading systems.
Some of the white-shoe firms have been sharply critical of individual day traders in the past, essentially labeling them as bandits who undermine the stock market with their furious trading -- much of which attempts to exploit momentary opportunities in Wall Street dealers' quoted prices for Nasdaq stocks.
But mainstream companies also have become attracted to day-trading shops' sophisticated software now that alternative electronic trading systems have emerged to challenge the traditional markets of the New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq.