I'm looking for some guidance and advice regarding platform options - here's my situation:
Over 15 years investing/swing trading experience - but only manual order entry with my online broker
Swing Trading mainly with stock options and futures - hold for 1 to 7 days or so, then close position
Investing just buying/selling stocks for the long term (not looking to automate that)
Used a few brokers, most recently optionsXpress
I am looking for the right platform to:
Back-test strategies (current I use ninjatrader) - show strategy results on charts and tabular results (kind of like ninjatrader does)
Automate my swing trading entries (order placed automatically), as well as stops & profit targets.
Decent charting support - all swing trades are based on technical analysis, so I need charts
Here's the trick - I would like to the automated order entries to be based on underlying security (say on Apple stock), but the system actually to buy calls or puts of that underlying security
Example 1: Apple trades above $700/share, the system buys 3 weekly option calls strike at 705. Similar for futures or indices or ETFs.
I can close positions manually - or they can be closed out automatically with stops & profit targets.
My strategies have pretty straight forward entries (no complicated indicators or complex math), stops and profit targets based on previous bars, averages of low or high. 2-3 tiered profit target easily defined. May or may not move stops based on profit targets achieved.
I trade options with only discretionary money - options only knowing and limiting my risk exposure (no naked options)
I discovered that NT does not trade options, to my disappointment. I haven't completed my research, but I am looking at MultiCharts, SierraCharts, E-signal, ninja trader, Interactive Broker Java API....
Is there any platforms I am missing that can achieve the results?
What is your recommendation for the most stable, fast, reliable platform that can do this?
Give CQG integrated client a try. It's a powerful platform with automation&back test capability, good charting, support for options/stocks/futures, top quality data, excellent customer support. The only downside is: it's expensive for retail traders
The following user says Thank You to shzhning for this post:
In my experience MultiCharts offers a detailed and capable backtesting engine while also providing a polished front end for charting and strategy development. The backtesting engine includes plenty of reporting options and also offers portfolio backtesting and optimization options as well.
You also have the choice between either an EasyLanguage or C#/.NET compatible version if you prefer one or the other. Many choose EasyLanguage for rapid development and backtesting, but the more ‘developer’ minded traders may prefer C# for the flexibility it provides.
The downside is that MultiCharts does not support options, nor do many of the platforms you listed unfortunately. However, options aside, I think MultiCharts is worth a demo at the very least as it is set up very well for automation efforts whether it be actual execution or the research/development phases. It may be possible to still incorporate your options trading with MultiCharts for signal generation, but of course this would likely require some further development work on your end.
THERE IS A SUBSTANTIAL RISK OF LOSS IN FUTURES TRADING. PAST PERFORMANCE IS NOT INDICATIVE OF FUTURE RESULTS.
PM with any questions about optimusfutures (800) 771-6748 (561) 367 8686. THERE IS A SUBSTANTIAL RISK OF LOSS IN FUTURES TRADING.
The following user says Thank You to mattz for this post:
I would add Thinkorswim(TOS), Livevol & Obsidian to your list to evaluate. TOS may work but you would have to negotiate the commissions. Livevol platform is included if you use their brokerage. Interactive Broker does their clearing and commissions are excellent. Obsidian (Silexx) is for pros and broker neutral. You can clear through IB with them as well.
With all of these you would have to evaluate whether they can handle your backtest and automation requirements. I agree with a previous user that you should look at Amibroker for backtesting and system development. They have a trading interface with IB for order automation but I would be careful.
Last edited by canyon; July 29th, 2014 at 09:11 PM.
Reason: Amibroker comments
The following user says Thank You to canyon for this post:
Thank you all for your thoughts - it seems I should zero in on what I really need - so let me ask this then, this is a key requirement for me:
1. Forget about backtesting or charting. Which of these platforms (or any platforms out there) is able to automate options trading for me, based on the underlying security? For example, apple trades above $700, then buy 3 weekly calls with strike at 705. I press the button, set it and forget it until the trade is triggered.
This is my key requirement - will any of them work??
Nah - do your own research and due diligence. One last suggestion. Take a look at Prodigio RT for trade execution. They interface with TOS/TDA, Trade Monster & TradeKing, which all support stocks & options.