The Quick Quote gadget allows you to view basic pricing data of a symbol. This data includes current last, bid, and ask prices and also the net change. For futures and forex, the net change is measured from the last transaction in the previous trading session; for other instruments, since morning. The Quick Quote is basically a watch list that only has one symbol in it. While you cannot customize this watch list, all other watch list functions are available: you can send orders, create alerts, and view more in-depth info on the symbol from the right-click menu.
The left sidebar is an area in the thinkorswim interface where you keep gadgets necessary for your work. These gadgets allow you to view some trading information immediately, watch news or even distract yourself by playing a couple of built-in games without needing to leave the main window of the platform. The content of the left sidebar is completely customizable. It is up to you to decide which gadgets to keep there; refer to pages in this section, to learn more about each of them.
To add a gadget, click the 'plus' button at the bottom of the sidebar. The Select gadget dialog will appear. Click on the name of the gadget you would like to display; it will be immediately added. Note that you can have up to 15 gadgets at a time on the left sidebar, however only a subset of these will be onscreen at any given time depending on their heights. The sidebar can be scrolled using the arrow buttons at the bottom. You can also resize the sidebar by dragging its right border to the width you like.
If you don't need a previously added gadget anymore, you can remove it from the left sidebar. In order to do that, click the Show actions button in its top right corner and choose Delete gadget from the menu; the gadget will be removed. If you've added many gadgets and like to quickly delete several of them, consider using the Customize gadgets dialog (accessible via the 'gear' button at the bottom). This dialog displays a compact list of currently added gadgets; clicking the 'x' button next to a gadget name will delete the gadget from the sidebar. This menu also allows you to rearrange the order of your gadgets by clicking and dragging their names into a new order.
The Show actions menu (accessible from the button at the top-right corner of each gadget) also allows you to detach or switch the gadget. Detaching means displaying the gadget in a separate window with an option to keep it above all other windows (for this purpose, click the 'pin' button on top of the detached gadget). Switching means replacing a gadget with another: after clicking Switch gadget, you will see the Select gadget dialog where you can choose a gadget to replace the current one.
If you don't need any of the gadgets at the moment, you can hide the whole sidebar. In order to do that, click the Hide gadgets button in the bottom left corner of the sidebar; the sidebar will be hidden. The button itself, however, will be kept where it belongs so that you can quickly unhide the sidebar once you need it again.
Level II is a thinkorswim gadget that displays best ask and bid prices for each of the exchanges making markets in stocks, options, and futures. It is essentially a real-time ordered list of best bids and asks of an underlying that allows instant order placement. Like all other gadgets, Level II can be displayed as a section of the left sidebar or a separate window (see the Left Sidebar article for details).
In the gadget header you will see the following elements: the symbol selector, the 'clip' icon , the full name of the symbol, the current market price of the selected symbol, and its percentage and absolute change since midnight. The clip icon brings up a color-and-number selection menu; choosing a color in this menu will link Level II to all thinkorswim components with similar color. Consider linking Level II to a watch list so that clicking through the latter will immediately display the corresponding symbols in Level II.
For stocks and options, Level II is a color-coded display of best bid and ask prices from a given set of exchanges. Use the toggle in the upper right corner of the working area to switch between the pre-defined sets (books): Level II, NASDAQ Full Book, and BATS/EDGE Full Book. For futures, since they each trade on a single exchange, Level II displays first several layers of that exchange's book.
When you specify the symbol in the symbol selector, you will see the real-time quotes in the working area. The working area is divided into two sets of columns: bid-related (to the left) and ask-related (to the right). These columns identify the marketplace or market maker at the given bid or ask price with respective number of shares to be bought or sold (ask/bid size). In both ask and bid size columns, the numbers represent hundreds of available shares or contracts: for example, 3 in the bid size column means that there are 300 shares or contracts ready to be bought at the respective bid price at the respective exchange.
Since the purpose of Level II is providing you with best bid ask prices, the columns are sorted accordingly. By default, the bid area of the gadget is sorted in descending order by the bid price column, so that highest prices are on top. As it might be expected, the ask side is sorted vice versa: the default sorting displays lowest prices on top. You can re-sort the columns in the reverse order by clicking on the Bid or Ask title, or sort the set by exchange name or bid/ask price by clicking the title of respective column.
Level II enables you to add orders instantly. Click on a bid price in Level II to add a sell order; clicking on an ask price will prompt you to add a buy order.
Times and Sales is a thinkorswim gadget that provides you with more in-depth data on a specified instrument. This data includes records on time, price, and volume of each transaction completed for this instrument intraday. Like all other gadgets, Times and Sales can be displayed as a section of the left sidebar or a separate window (see the Left Sidebar article for details).
In the gadget header you will see the following elements: the symbol selector, the 'clip' icon , the full name of the symbol, the current market price of the selected symbol, and its percentage and absolute change since midnight. The clip icon brings up a color-and-number selection menu; choosing a color in this menu will link Times and Sales to all thinkorswim components with similar color. Consider linking Times and Sales to a watch list so that clicking through the latter will immediately display the corresponding symbols in Times and Sales.
Once you have selected the symbol, the working area of the gadget will display the transaction records sorted by transaction time, newest first. By default, the gadget will also display the price and the volume of each recorded transaction. The list of records is refreshed every five minutes and transactions older than that are removed. Viewing all recorded transactions might be unnecessary sometimes, so you can filter the records by size of the transaction. Click on the header of the Size column and select the desirable size range from the drop-down so only records that fit into this range will be displayed. You can also specify a custom range by clicking Customize Size Filter in this drop-down.
If you need to load additional trading data into Times and Sales, you can customize the columns. Right-click anywhere in the table header and choose Customize. In the dialog window, customize the set of columns: in addition to the default ones, you can add instrument's bid and ask values and also the exchange where the transaction was completed (marked by letter X in the Available Items list). Note that in Times and Sales, the exchanges are named using a one-letter code; the full list of codes can be found here.