A Beginner Thread

Discussion in 'Automated Trading' started by elomich, Dec 3, 2011.

  1. elomich


    I recently started a thread here asking some questions regarding a strategy I have been looking to automate. Before posting I was very in the dark, and despite some helpful replies, I still feel like there is A LOT of information I need. I wanted to begin a thread to address some issues for people like me - people who have traded and know trading, but know pretty much nothing about computing, programming, optimization, and every other term related to automated trading.

    I was trying to think of a few good beginner questions. For example, someone just getting into trading might ask about some good resources to learn the basics of the markets. What purpose do they serve, how are prices decided, etc...basic stuff like that. So,

    What are some good resources to begin to learn about automated trading? Any good books? I saw someone posted this:


    Should I take some classes at a community college to learn more about programming?

    Are there any places to find examples of a strategy going from an idea to a computer language?

    Seriously, anything to cover some of the basics. I feel I, and maybe others in a similar position, could use some info to build a solid foundation. Please speak as if you are giving advice to a 3rd grader. Thanks!
  2. Lornz


  3. elomich


    +1. Thanks a lot for the reply. These are the kind of things I am looking for. They seem to cover a lot of the programming basics, as you said.

    Once one has a trading idea, is that all they really need to do? Code it and run it? Or are there other steps involved?

    Is there a good resource that talks about a lot of the different types of automated trading systems out there? For example, a description of how a HFT system might work and how a long term fundamental-based system might work?
  4. I would not trade based on fundamentals. Period!!!
    With Fundamentals trading you will have large drawdowns and a very slow rate of return.
    Stocks respond to markets, fear, greed etc and you will be in a sea which surges back and forward where you have no control.
    Fundamental information as supplied by companies, media etc is out of date, complex, deceiving, too deep to evaluate correctly, you need indepth inside info on a company to evaluate true fundamentals.
    You may get some winners, but it will most likely be a random win.
    This is a very slow route to getting rich, Warren Buffett may succeed but I think he has inside info to invest.
    As you have this Thread in the Automated trading section, hence this response, these two don't go together.
  5. elomich


    I only said fundamentals to demonstrate that I was looking for a source that would describe how a very wide variety of systems might work.
  6. I am still learning and a long ways from a fully automated trading system . I am learning to use ProdigioRTS from ThinkOrSwim to fire live signals. It is really easy to use and does not require scripting or programming skills.

    It's all a drag-and-drop visual development environement and has a lively support/educational forum where different strategies are demonstrated on video live and on archive.
  7. Mr_You


    Download NinjaTrader (for free), download futures Market Replay data (for free) or sign up with Zen-Fire for a free 30-day demo account for backtesting futures historical data. Use the Strategy Wizard in NinjaTrader to create a strategy or "unlock it" to custom code your own using C#.

    See NinjaTrader training videos to help get you started. You really can't get started with the basics any easier/quicker/cheaper than this. Anything besides the above and an intro to C# (online for free) is probably overkill for a beginner.

    Consider Kinetick if you need other data feeds or historical data for backtesting.