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Friendly vendor competition?

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Elite Member
Monterey, CA
Futures Experience: Intermediate
Platform: Ninjatrader
Favorite Futures: CL
Posts: 80 since Jan 2014
Thanks: 28 given, 97 received

Friendly vendor competition?

After the recent talk about just how much the trading marketplace seems to be overflowing with style-over-substance sites and products and vendors, and how many of them focus entirely on shrewd marketing as opposed to developing a working product, I was thinking that this forum might be in a unique position to help clear these muddied waters. This is just an idea, but I thought I'd throw it out there to see if it gained any traction. . .

What if we were to create/host a friendly ongoing competition that stripped away all of the nonsense and hype and potential for excuses, and allowed vendors to test their logic on a level playing field, keeping careful track of the results? This means a hands-off, automated strategy competition. I envision this competition to be similar to the automated strategy competitions that have been hosted on this forum before, with one VITAL caveat: Instead of having strategies that trade once or twice a week, sometimes even less, we would set a minimum of in-market-time per week, that, if not hit, would disqualify the competitor (or financial penalize somehow)? A calculation for each trade, such as "NumberOfContracts * TimeInMarket = X", and then we simply sum together all X values, for a cumulative total of single-contract-market-minutes, which I think is a decent overall gauge of market exposure, and a means to force enough market exposure to claim that the strategies have been properly tested. I'd hope that most vendors selling automated strategies should be able to put together a portfolio/grouping of strategies that are active enough to meet the minimum cutoff that would be established.

I'd want to add this caveat because it forces a much more accurate and efficient test of the abilities of a trader. Anyone can attain a nice net profit over a tiny handful of trades, even coasting on pure randomness and chaos, just as anyone can flip 'heads' 8 or 9 times out of 10, if given a few tries to do so. . but nobody is going to flip heads 900 times out of 1000 anytime soon. The randomness/chaos/chance decreases exponentially, of course, as the data pool increases.

This type of competition would be as close as we could come to an objective measure of actual EDGE encompassed within the products of these vendors. The winner would be whomever had the highest net profit at the end of the time period (perhaps approximately a month, or two?), and very clear and direct statistics could be updated regularly to show how the competition was progressing. Those vendors who did compete could have their net-profit balances permanently listed somewhere, immortalized for all to see, and if they performed well, I'd imagine this would be a significant boon for business.

I'd think any vendor with an effective and consistent product would jump at the chance to prove himself in such a public manner, and I really do envision a friendly competition, where all who are willing to face off are lauded by the community for doing so. . would be nice if it could be entirely friendly and supportive, and all-around positive in nature.

I'd even be willing to take an active role in setup and management of the competition, (though the 'playing field' should be an objective arbiter like Sam or someone else trusted implicitly by the community with a VPS to offer), and/or would absolutely love to compete myself, as I thrive on (friendly) competition. . would also be more than willing to help track down some other competitors.

That is, IF there is any real interest in this amongst (formerly BMT)'ers. . . I'd love to hear your thoughts, Mike, first and foremost. I DO think its possible to help reorient the marketplace a bit, in the direction of one where vendors rise or fall based upon merit and ability, as opposed to shrewdness, manipulation and exaggeration carrying the day.


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