Algorithmic trading systems selection for NinjaTrader

Trader Question:

Please help me understand Algorithmic trading systems selection for NinjaTrader, how do i choose the right robot there is so many to choose from the MTDS, MTNTF, MTU7. PLEASE ADVISE!

MT Answer:

Free users are welcome to experiment  free forever unlimited on sim/demo trading and use the free online resources of of the 24/7 Help Desk: https://microtrends.zendesk.com/hc/en-us and the MicroTrends Help Desk Forum of previously answered questions and articles:  https://microtrends.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/community/topics

Paid for users on the Gold Plan get  in depth support and assistance/ tempaltes basic advice get started advice and documentation structure delivered by drop box/ and data on the Platinum Plan we setup a server and a set of models/templates and mentor on how to approach/ backtest/ collate stats and  work on pre-production and sim/live trading models and and manage that process but it is always the trader who makes the decisions – we simply accelerate the learning curve and facilitate it all.

What is the Right Algorithmic Trading System Robot for me?

Over time – The right robot is one you have selected based on your direct experience and understanding:
You would have backtested, out of sample tested, traded in pre-production and selected for your style/ availability & capital
And you will have tracked all your systems/tests and collated all the data at all stages with notes so you understand what you tested in the past and why you arrived to the present – you will know which robot works when and why and you can match it to the current market phases and decide if its tenable to use etc
you will correlate it to market ranges/ volume/ trends and price cycles so you will know why and when to use it and when not to and you can have several – for example a breakout or a trend model and or mean reversions

The Tools are here for that: Automated trading
https://s3.amazonaws.com/microtrends/docs/MicroTrends+NinjaTrader+Approaches+and+Tools+for+Automated+Trading+success.pdf

you will want data too: tickdata
https://www.tickdata.com/product/historical-futures-data/

Getting Started:
we suggest starting with a simple robot – such as the MTDS SDK USAR – and understanding all the basic parameters – then moving to a MTu7 if required – MTU7 is a combination of MTDS7 + MTNTF7 signals indicators

GET STARTED with MTDS7
https://microtrends.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/217164386-MTDS7-New-User-Orientation

MTDS7 USAR Trader Modes:
https://s3.amazonaws.com/microtrends/docs/MTDS7+SDK+USAR+Trader+Modes.pdf
There is a section for templates, tools and bars downloads – They are called just Uni Renko or Super Renko

MTu7 – Structured learning approach – after MTDS7 mastery
https://microtrends.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/115001234303-Structured-Learning-approach-for-MTu7-Strategies

Resources & TIPS
https://microtrends.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/115002165203-Installing-and-getting-started-with-MicroTrends-NinjaTrader-7-Strategies-Automated-Trading-Systems
https://microtrends.zendesk.com/entries/65133859-Prepare-NinjaTrader-7-for-AutoTrading
https://microtrends.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/115000299263-NinjaTrader-7-Hangs-after-clicking-the-Strategies-Menu-to-display-strategy-list

Suggested Reading

New Market Wizards
Way of the Turtle –
Mechanical trading systems – Earik Beann
Mechanical Trading Systems – Pairing Trader Psychology with Technical Analysis – RICHARD L. WEISSMAN

Now you need to understand this also
http://www.vantharp.com/tharp-concepts/expectancy.asp
http://www.learningmarkets.com/determining-expectancy-in-your-trading/

automated trading systems free strategy like an atm machine

Trader Question:

“What do you have that could be a trend trader that takes quick 4-6 tick profits on a many trade basis. Kinda like trading the trend but enter every green bar for a 4-6 tick profit and every red bar for 4-6 ticks profits. and do this consistently all day long day in and out. Not asking for alot. Let’s think about how we can make a strategy that is very consistent and makes 4-6 tick all the time kinda like an atm machine…”

MicroTrends Answer
The only thing in trading that makes money the whole time is the exchange and the broker. Some market making firms make money every day, some reputedly since inception of HTF market making algos – you only need about 100Milllion to trade and a pay roll 25% of that to start with for some of the best minds in the industry.

In reality – We are restricted to slow systems in comparison to the Pro inside track of market makers and high frequency trading, and we will never ever ever make money the whole time like an ATM machine – to even want that is to be a failure – trading systems at best they will have moments of profit and moments of drawdown. This is why we must employ risk management and money management and backtest and understand the drawdown and capital requirements of a systems natural profile- without curve fitting – to give us the win % ratio and average loser/winner to provide the expectancy of the system -and the old cliches are 100% true and timeless the trend is your friend until the end. You ascertain if the system is within your style of trading and risk capital – then perform further testing. out of sample, realtime paper trading etc.

So yes you are asking for a lot you are asking for the absolute impossible – – it doesn’t exist this side of the fence. Trading certainly doesn’t work that way as the markets don’t work that way – slippage/ Liquidity/ latency, trendless periods etc on top.

The world of NinjaTrader is at best a slick glider or cessna if you are lucky when you use a professional developer for your NinjaTrader trading systems development, compared to a ground to air missile used by the real players who use direct market access and don’t use a retail platform or aggregated datafeed, and you are into Formula 1 budgets and skills – you cannot hope to trade like that without the correct budget and equipment or team. Take for example Datafeeds used by retail platforms are 100 times+ slower that a pro data feed direct from the exchange, order routing proximity hosting to machine pricing engines are 100KS per annum for 1 metre closer on a wire, networks cards are £50K upwards… the data we see, the time sales we is ancient history to the inside track players – they are operating in the now – we are operating in the shadow of the past – so our systems need to based on what is tenable and not what fear and greed makes us dream up and fantasies- i just want to trade every each tick 1 delusional trader told me once and they blew $600K USD in 1 year chasing that futile blind deaf to advice steered by greed and fear – greed i want every signal, fear i want a small target i cant stand losing.

If you believe as retail trader you can have an ATM machine and go play golf and talk down the pub about your life and setup and its all easy and you go do this on your shoe string budget and total lack of skill and knowledge then you are a delusional dreamer seduced by the BS on the internet and unscrupulous brokers and vendors – you are a sucker, a pigeon waiting to be butchered, you will go in circles forever bleeding out your account time and time again – looking for the holy grail when in fact you need a mindset change and few home truths told to you – however you are rarely going to get that as the mindset out there is to take as much money from you as possible and suck your blood.

The best you can expect to do with a system is already fantastic why change it ? the answer is you need to change:
You can attempt to enter the market when you have identified trending cyclical moments and get that more right than wrong – then that style may be tenable for short periods – so how to trade them and how to stop trading once they go so you don’t give it back… the easiest way is to trend trade and let it run – with timing/ and other elements, less is more – 3 to 5 trades per day – limit your risk per trade and daily/weekly risk.

If you think you can do 100 trades per day you I can 99.99999999..% guarantee you will never make it.

Less is more… so try to enter with high probability with the directional bias and take some off the table early and run the rest for example or trail in etc… and let it run etc..
That is the easiest way to do things in order to get your first working system – trying to get a scalping system Goldman Sachs would pay 10Mil+ for is not going to work here…

So that’s my advice a change of thinking will do you good as I can bet money you will not succeed trying to scalp all day.

So we can look at the entry system and create some kind of filtering condition. You cannot always force a system to work in your budget, you have to get a viable system and understand what it takes to use it… and either it’s too expensive or you got some kind of chance…

So for the reasons above we offer our trading systems for free unlimited for trial/testing research. We dont take advantage of traders financial aspirations, we are straight talking no BS, show it as it is. You can experiment with all our free NinjaTrader strategies forever for sim/demo/backtest purposes – believe your stats – do it correctly don’t go in circles bleeding jumping from 1 system to another as each one goes in and out of winning and losing runs.

MicroTrends NinjaTrader 8 Trading Systems Migration Update News

We are currently still working on NT7 and NT8 in parallel to finalize the NT7 code base -before full migration of features to NT8 over the course of 2017, we aim to have the first release of NT8 code base this quarter and it will be a continuous release and process with updates over the course of 2017 into 2018 3 months to 6 months to migrate – with additional new products and services added into 2019. So the NT8 products will incremental in features etc., and news updates are provided on social media, blog, newsletter etc. here http://www.microtrends.co/contact/

NT8 has had many challenges being new software,  it’s been a very difficult task to migrate with something that has so many issues for the purpose or developing and testing – we are seeing that this latest release of NT8 is the strongest version so far and thus will allow us to pick up the pace.

NT8 focus is the MTDS8 – and it’s taken 6 months of starting and stopping so far with NT8, due to the caveats we are unable to work unhindered and have hit many detours on route so that any timescale is subject to slippage as the process of discovery in development goes on. We are aiming and hoping this quarter to get that released – then we can start to build up all the other frameworks etc.

NT8 did have some very serious problems to address which became apparent only to the minority of users, so in fact for most people its been a robust and successful upgrade. NT8 fixed the errors in NT7 however by the virtue of using a new different technology NT8 has its own new world of technical nuances and caveats to resolve which only come out of the woodwork when given to the end users. Therefore these issues also affected us and we have hit many dead ends on what should have been a simple task, so we have been unable to steer a steady course and make the kind of progress we needed to hit our deadlines of delivery of first versions end of Q1, now we are looking at Q2…

As details the latest version of NT8 is looking the best so far, in most cases 80% of you won’t see any issues but in small % there are problems which can stop progress in its tracks as we try to go around the impediments.  Over time  with each iteration and release NT8 will a more robust and polished high end trading platform for retail and commercial traders, so the current state is all part of software development and with the early usage of a new technology, bleeding edge you will get some wins and some disadvantages to be addressed over time.

NT8 is  quite amazing and as we go we are seeing new potential and untapped areas of trading opportunities by leverage its unparalleled features and functions in the trading platform world. So when NT8 is more robust it allows us to go at full speed in all areas.

Why are we moving to NT8  cant we just use our wonderful NT7 tech?

This situation of migrating and programming to new software with maturing ahead, certainly can make life very hard this end and we can only imagine what the NT dev Team has gone through! – Truth is in fact personally I wanted to retire from doing so much development and spend more of my time trading and just trade with my technology with some enhancements, and not spend the next 1 to 3 years writing new  WPF technology versions, but still develop -just not so much 🙂

Well i do enjoy development, but migration can be headache a long process and the end goal is the end results are going to be well worth it..  Life cant always be a smooth ride in the development dept.. if it were i’m sure i would not have enjoyed all those years ago… 1990s!!!!  So it’s case of patience… the clash of interests is really time and focus… If I can viably trade which i can both self assisted and within hedge funds with a proven track and smash it out the park with my current tech and the wonderful NinjaTrader platform!-It does begs the question. “What the heck do I need to do this for?” Bleeding through the forehead with effort and doing incredibly long hours as it seems sometimes for little or no gain in the short term and turning my back on much larger and easier financial opportunities: “TRADING” 🙂

That’s when short term thinking has to be replaced with medium to long terms thinking, if  i can do this now with the current tech what can i do with the next generation? now that is an excited thought!  Patience! And that attitude is the winning one in all aspects of life and trading i believe.

But! Time is going fast in 2017, every time i look at our plans for the NT7 ended due to a change of architecture with NT8 WPF which resulted in multiples of ideas  and so now the very large new plans for NT8.. and it stretches in to many years as new and wonderful new products are visualized to leverage the new NT8 features and capability!!!

For the  users and for the Fans. I feel that with 3000 past users of the MTNTF indicators from MicroTrends and the requests from people i am compelled to migrate to NT8…  we will provide the software on the same free basis, however we found that around 95% of NT7 users are using the software free and many do not pay for the license, so that will change slightly in the future as we enforce some kind of payment reminder for the license etc… we think that’s more than fair,we are the only ones to be so generous so some revenues for indicators will be switched on soon.

One reason we are doing this is i will benefit as a trader myself – and that is a major reason. I firmly believe in NT8 and the future with it. We are going to get a 10 year to 15 year ride from WPF – even if the boffins at MicroSoft have turned towards other technologies in that time, its here for decades..

Technically there are many reasons to use NT8 versus NT7.

NT7 has short falls, it was a not a finished product, it needed a rewrite to make it the robust version, we can all make comments from the sidelines and mine would be: it needed to be – NT 7.5 windows forms, would be my preferred route and a 6 month to 1 year release date-  and then.. go on to the new technology… WPF or UWA or even go cloud…    and that ideal is based on infinite resources and time…

So when NT reached the verdict  NT7 needed a rewrite to cut out the foundations preventing progress and recreate them,  NT investigated and saw Microsoft were sending smoke signals out to say windows forms is finished, WPF is and will be here for a long term ( but so will windows forms but they wont talk about that or support or make updates to it) – so  NT8 became a WPF technology, WPF for serious desktops applications is the only choice you have now – unless you go for windows forms still – its unsupported by Microsoft.  WPF may eventually  become UWA or something similar in the next 5 to 10 years as WPF is even now effectively dead to some deveopers in terms of its not the start player anymore, not  fitting into Microsoft’s Core and Azure/mobile push… but its the only choice they have now and it will be worked on by MicroSoft the aim to optimize and make it better… but the % of fuel it’s a backburner item for MicroSoft not a new ground breaking future tech, just one above the minimum support to keep it alive and improve it but nothing hugely, but really they finalized what they needed to with it now as a mature technology, there is not a huge amount except platform compatibility ,optimization and bugs fixes to come-  but with the c# language and .net framework that is progressing constantly! So this is good news for NT8, it will also benefit.

So love it or hate it – there is good reason for both… WPF desktops apps are here to stay and for Microsoft is still very much alive… it’s widely in use today and many legacy windows applications are being migrated to it all over the planet…so that they are using a supported current tech…   The real deal and investment for future tech is that Microsoft wants 1 technology to be used for computer/tablet/ phone….  and to grow is Azure/ server Core

so the end result NT8 was a new technology WPF and latest .net tech and so therefore it has taken many years for the developers to write it and become proficient compared to their black belt expertise in the Windows forms world..  and so this  year we all have to start to use WPF and XAML and the transition really sucks sometimes, however it is really better and there is no choice -the end result is we can build better stuff so in the end it will become a wonderful thing!

And that is the constant of being a developer, as soon as you are an established veteran you are out of date and have to move on dragging you heals or embracing the “so called better” in many cases it’s not but in many cases it is… there is no real choice… for me some technologies 20 years allowed more powerful programming than all the bloated bloatware we are forced to use today… in some ways, in some ways now its a light year ahead our hands are tied and MicroSoft is the dictator as it finds new ways to make money or die if stand still.

So of course NT moved with the technology to NT8 WPF instead of Windows forms  – and it took a long long long time to do which is not at all surprising, so we are stuck with a semi finished NT7 with pitfall and now a new technology with its pitfalls as its still maturing – but fast becoming something very viable and much much more powerful than NT7 – so 2017 is the year NT8 became great.

NT7 still has some advantages over NT8 which will be short lived when the  Ninjatrader Application Usability Testing team are let lose on NT8 to make it slicker and easier to use – and so we will we be able to create charts, arrange, load templates , save templates,  and use less clicks and short cuts and be productive on a  server for example – where NT8 lags behind. NT7 – but its out in front by a light year for performance and connection reliability the essentials that NT7 could not provide!  NT7 had many issues to be addressed by NT8 and these were in fact done.

WPF future… Microsoft wants to adapt to the hardware’s requirements and to improve WPF so that it become an absolutely suitable for all modern devices. ‘it’s important that existing WPF applications can adapt to new hardware capabilities coming to desktop machines’, – says Microsoft.

One more thing we have to mention is dotNetConf. Specifically – report dedicated to WPF. So, at the beginning of the speech, Unni Ravindranathan and Harikrishna Menon, who are project and program managers at Microsoft, mentioned, that WPF isn’t dead – there are things that are still in development. They added that they can’t explain in details because of NDA policy. But they hinted that the main purpose is to improve the performance of WPF at all. In general, Microsoft is going to work on the next areas of improvement: productivity and performance of scrolling and virtualization; support and integration of the DirectX (DX11 and DX12); modern equipment support (modern touch hardware, for example); tooling (diagnostic tooling support for WPF); etc.

Conclusion

Seems like Microsoft doesn’t want to showdown what’s really going on with its desktop apps and what’s their future. But we can say with confidence that desktop apps aren’t dead, they’re more than alive.

The main thing that NT8 and WPF have  is that NT8 does protects you from the craziness a developer must endure when using WPF XAML and Visual Studio for example – and actually makes it easier to code, the new editor in NT8 is a light year ahead of  the NT7 version . AS  amateurs or Pro developers this means we can forget the fact that NT8 uses WPF for 80% of the time, then its only syntactical changes and some more advanced changes and knowledge learning curves required.  So really to the end user NT8 and WPF offers nothing but advantages, and ongoing supported technology that is very mature and widespread.

New Power and moved boundaries

Apart from WPF which is merely the visaul presentaion layer of NinjaTrader – the most important developments are the facts:  NT8 is using an up to date technology for us to program in the latest .net  Frameworks  using the up to datae c#…so we are now able to produce some very advanced and evolved products so the effort and trouble will be well worth it!  NT8 is a giant leap forwards from NT7, as with all new technologies and products it will take some time to mature usually 1 to 2 years in a production environment, and you can be sure the NT teams are flat out and in full attendance to all issues and enhancements possible in NT8 so we can expect some very things for the long term also.

So we are very excited but sometimes extremely overwhelmed at the amount of work ahead!!!   Just think i could be trading 4 hours per day and taking life easy – instead of sometimes coding 12 to 16,…  we are loyal to our user base and will get the job done and you will see new boundaries pushed in the future with the tool sets we are writing.  And i will as a trader get to use the technology, and we got a good 10 years of NT8 Architecture ahead… so in fact it will be a win win…   then we got NT9 at some point and it will be interesting to see the technologies for mobile/tablet and desktop/ cloud… it might well utilise.

So In summary we are very happy with NT8  and our path ahead and very keen to get NT8 MTDS8 release very soon in fact, but were not able to release the version I wanted so we rolled back to a very basic working model – plans for it are being stifled by technical challenges so we will have to keep it simple and then build up my vision for it over the coming months and evolve it …  the current releases of NT8 are so good now that we can plough on ahead at a fast pace.  But this is not the end yet of NT7 or the products for it, we will finalize them and support them and focus on NT8 into the future.

Stay up to date with news/ promos &  updates are provided on social media, blog, newsletter etc. here http://www.microtrends.co/contact/

how to get started trading with NinjaTrader MicroTrends Trading Systems

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See below for full Guidance details of installing and configuring/using NinjaTrader

  1. Download & Install the NinjaTrader FREE Trade Platform
  2. Get a Datafeed or trading acocunt with a datafeed included
  3. Configure NT with the Datafeed/Account Connection
  4. Download free ninjatrader custom bars, free trial indicators & Import to NinjaTrader
  5. Restart NinjaTrader
  6. Connect to the datafeed
  7. Open a chart with the custom bars or your choice of bars
  8. Add the indicator/s to the chart, learn how to work with charts, indicators & workspaces
  9. Show chart trader and configure for trading sim/realtime ready for trading, get setup for manual order entry with a basic automatic trade manager – or use an advanced trade management system for free on demo/pay for live trading such as the MTDS7 NinjaBuddy Trade Manager for automatic trade management
  10. Practice realtime/sim trading using indicator signals & create your system rules, log your stats in excel or a trade journal and perfect your trading skills to become a winning trading.

NinjaTrader Trade Platform – Guidance

NinjaTrader 7 Help Guides

  1. http://ninjatrader.com/support/helpGuides/nt7/
  2. Install: http://ninjatrader.com/support/helpGuides/nt7/installation.htm
  3. Connect to data: http://ninjatrader.com/support/helpGuides/nt7/connecting.htm
  4. Create a Chart: http://ninjatrader.com/support/helpGuides/nt7/creating_a_chart.htm
  5. Working with indicators: http://ninjatrader.com/support/helpGuides/nt7/working_with_indicators.htm

NinjaTrader 8 Help Guides

  1. http://ninjatrader.com/support/helpGuides/nt8/en-us/
  2. Install: http://ninjatrader.com/support/helpGuides/nt8/en-us/installation.htm
  3. Connect to data: http://ninjatrader.com/support/helpGuides/nt8/en-us/connecting.htm
  4. Create a Chart: http://ninjatrader.com/support/helpGuides/nt8/en-us/creating_a_chart.htm
  5. Working with indicators: http://ninjatrader.com/support/helpGuides/nt8/en-us/working_with_indicators.htm

2015 to 2016 Journey from NinjaTrader 7 to NinjaTrader 8

When it comes as of writing November 2016 – in terms of NinjaTrader 8, MicroTrends is very behind where i wanted us to be in migrating our technologies to NinjaTrader 8 from NinjaTrader 7.  You will happy to know we are at 1000% effort and time on this now and very happy with the technology NT has done a superb job and the latest C# .net technology is a light year ahead now. WE will be releasing NinjaTrader 8 new and migrated components November onwards. The reason we are behind was due to a long project i will summarize if i can:

In 2015 to 2016 – my focus was elsewhere instead of MicroTrends public products and projects – I  developed and traded automated trading systems supplied by MicroTrends algorithmic trading consultancy for a commercial hedge fund Clearpoint Capital (CPC) and was given a 5Mil cap to trade with and a risk mandate of 1%,  to trade alongside their discretionary fundamental trading model –  I was treated with amazing hospitality and every courtesy, expense and wish furnished… my job apart from enjoying Australia was to implement mechanical systems using the MTDS7 as the foundation with some strategies based on the MTDS USAR and the MTNTF7 Fib Grid systems the later. I could write a small book on the pains and successes.

I was based on site at the invitation of CPC and over time implemented some swing/ day trading algos which are proprietary to MicroTrends, we aimed to diversify across 20 futures instruments or so with different volumes, ranges, behaviour and seasonals… which resulted in a massive testing cycle of 3 months testing, visualisation sense checking, out of sample, walkforwards and realtime sim trading pre production – until going live, then ongoing stats and assessment against baseline -and variants of settings based on live trading feedback…  trading 3 different timezones and requiring fault tolerance and redundancy, therefore in In addition and lots of infrastructure and data feed costs.

We ended up with viable automated systems on 6 markets live trading with 3 automated systems   2- systems but with parameter-set and time-series diversification -a total of 18 in parallel and that took 6months to go live,  for compliance we had to follow a rigid set of plans before trading…and some systems were taken offline and replaced by evolved versions before we were stable, i enjoyed immensely using MicroTrends MTDS7 and NinjaTrader technology and enhancing it on the job as required.  It was a fantastic journey with a lot of success algorithmic trading the FDAX which is beyond all doubt my favourite market….trading up to 8lots per trade entry certainly had its moments 🙂

We also placed discretionary trades based on the MicroTrends NinjaTrader Framework – Multi-time Frame Analysis – Fib Grid systems and had great success with those on markets screened for volatility and market structure- such as Silver, Gold, Coffee etc Our challenge with that as merely to trail the stop/brackets at the correct intervals… so automatic trade management was a key requirement missing for this components- if volatile moves  occur you need to scale out/trail in to lock in profits to prevent giving it back on a reversal profit taking sell off or short covering rally -all those points are easily determined in advance -you just need to be there to move the stoploss brackets in.

Due to the time zone and style of trading implemented and the need to constantly diversify, i ending up working until 6am, 5 days per week and then on weekends preparing multiple systems, stats, backtests, real-time tests, live results and manage 3 live trading servers, 3 pre-production, 3 back test servers and so it was in the end a 7 day per week task –   instead of 1 server with an easy to manage end of day trading system – this was not a tenable approach for me or anyone – so in August we switched off to change route and focus free from the overhead of trading and monitoring, we had great success with the algos… but our operational foot print was too big and our efficiency was too low…perhaps 66% instead of 85% as a goal…

Imagine the cost and maintaining 9 servers, backtest, pre production, and production servers as they used servers with different time zones had costs of  data feeds + my office costs- + my retainer 😉  + my annual bonus… then 24/7 monitoring – which in the end made this approach not the best route.  1. we needed to scale to a wider and more manageable trading portfolio… 2. the basis of mistakes and inefficiencies in the limitations of the technology had cost around 50% of profits on some markets, according to a real-time baseline versus the real-time live results, crashes, stop/restarts/ downloading data crashes, or connections failing at the session open were the culprit…

This is the real difference between the hypothetical realtime sim world to the realtime live trading world – and it is not just the difference between getting in the cage and fighting a UFC champion or sitting at home and being a keyboard warrior  – but more importantly the difference between the realized real world view and the hypothetical universe which is required as a guide and benchmark – the efficiency of live trading is the key to trading success.

So, on FDAX, FGBL, SPI, Nikkei where i was present and monitoring we hit it out the ball park or made a profit most weeks… on the other systems where i was not in direct attendance we routinely suffered opportunity costs -missed profits – technological issues prevented the mechanical fully automated trading systems working in a viable way due to inefficiency, the problem we were using a system created for day trading not swing trading. NinjaTrader 7 had some bad habits such as crashing when loading data so that other strategies were stopped and lost their context, working orders were cancelled and positions had to be flattened before you could restart a mechanical trading system, s0 we had to have separate servers to reduce the effects of errors, professional data feeds for each one. For me although trading was successful, I was simply spinning plates and juggling and it burned me out somewhat……we could not scale with this approach… fine for someone wanting to sit in front of a machine for 5 days per week – 12 to 16 hours per day – but even then limited to the amount of systems you can easily manage.

The problem stemmed from using NT7 strategies – these are really only suitable for attended day trading/swing overnight Sunday to Friday at maximum quite reliably but you need to make sure you are there to prepare data download,refresh and set it off for the open on Sunday evening – then you can trade all the way through with a NinjaTrader Continuum connection all the way to Friday Close, you need to close out Friday or do some special arranging using mutliple accounts with a fresh batch to start Sunday… Fantastic, but really i needed something to trade all week and start again the next week and not lose context of its positions and orders and to be able to reconnect and reload data… Sometimes a disconnect and reconnect caused havoc, cancelling working orders and leaving on unguarded positions, routine stuff… or a connection not waking up at the session open Sunday would miss a gold move – and that was the one needed to make the system viable……

So i needed to replace this solution to provide us with a swing trading/position trading capability – restart, stop/start, disconnect/reconnect – over a period of weeks/months on the same trade and not lose context…and to allow external adjustments of trades and orders and not go out of sync… CPC had no alternative but to as order me to investigate a multitude of alternative trading platforms: I investigated CQG API, TT XTrader API, Smart Quant, Bloomberg, Rithmic, Orc, Aparma,  Modulus, AgenaTader, even KDB+ and a Fix Engine after exhaustive and non biased examination of all technologies  and many dead ends…  or time and budget restrictions, actually we ended up with NinjaTrader 8, nothing else ticked as many boxes as the only cost effective and technologically capable solution – which is good for me… I can migrate from NinjaTrader 7 to NinjaTrader 8… still using charting technical price and signals indicators and not have issues trying to port them to other lesser featured platforms.

Using NinjaTrader 8 we can remove the problems with NT7 crashing and not loading data properly for example – also connectivity in NT8 works better and i can make sure it starts on a Sunday open to trade gold and not miss the open for example…… but we have to write an extension a set of proprietary MicroTrends technologies to enable true swing/position trading capability in NinjaTrader.

So, what about the winning algos in NT7?  Well they are great for a few markets but our mandate is the systems need to scale across 30 futures instruments not 6… which were medium high frequency trading systems- we wanted easy to manage low frequency systems – so then the only alternative I had to write an EOD system which allows us to scale to a large number of markets, so I can combine the winning algo pricing and rules, in as additional setup criteria when conditions are correct to use it in the system.

Why NinjaTrader 8 is the proven choice.

What we need is at a glance to see positions and entries across 30 markets+ as defined by the Fund Asset, stay in control with discretionary/automatic entry and automatic trade management with the ability to trade it all from a market scanner/chart view, stop/restart/ and not lose context of positions or working orders and externally adjust manually and the automatic system has no issues adjusting.  We can do this with the market analyzer with modified columns and function, allowing us full control and even the ability to monitor connections, reconnect and even download data on a schedule, and the system all restarts and continues without a hitch… Our Efficiency is then where we need it -say 85% +… Operationally cost wise, we can use the minimum for data feeds and equipment, this technique is something NT8 cannot do out the box, it requires advanced specialist development skills MicroTrends has in house, we can leverage the NT8 open structure we can access the lower API levels directly and access and build a solid foundation for swing and position trading… incredible! Thank you NinjaTrader!

NinjaTrader EOD system swing trading/position trading automatic trade management, stop, restart continue…discretionary + automatic trade management or fully auto + automatic trade management.

So, to conclude now i completed this EOD system in November and we are in a test phase, CPC will forward test and roll it out in 2017 and our high frequency high maintenance trading is finished allowing me a normal life once more- i will migrate the EOD system to NinjaTrader 8 eventually and we plan to build similar systems for traders who are interested in End of day Trading systems for NinjaTrader.

As a result of this work we are happy to anounce MicroTrends has also planned a release of a similar product.  If you interested in a swing/position trading which overcomes NinjaTrader strategy behaviours and allows control of a portfolio with automated or discretionary trade entry and automatic trade management please contact John at the Help Desk support@microtrends.co  who will provide details and make sure you are on the list for this limited sale product.

But for now, this means i am now back working full time on MicroTrends business – migration from NinjaTrader 7 to NinjaTrader 8!!!    And will also be consulting and continuing with the above at a more sedate existence!!!  So now you know why we are late with NinjaTrader 8!

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