DEFINITION of 'Level 1'
A trading service that displays real-time bid/ask quotes and last sales for securities trading on a stock exchange. Level 1 quotes supply basic information that may suffice for most investors, but not for active traders. Such traders generally need the complete order book and market depth information that is offered by Level 2 quotes.
BREAKING DOWN 'Level 1'
Level 1 price quotes were a relative rarity before the advent of the Internet and online trading, but are now offered without charge by a number of financial portals and websites. Reliable Level 1 quotes aid investors in getting better prices for security purchases and sales, especially in fast-moving markets where investors may prefer limit orders rather than market orders.