Backtesting Software & Autotrade

Discussion in 'Trading Software' started by whoknows?, Dec 12, 2006.

  1. OK. I have spent the last two days (literally about 8 hours total) sifting through this place. I signed up a while ago but never really checked it out. I was not expecting so many professionals here. I don't know why, but I was just expecting things like "So how do I start to trade for a living," and "I've got it made because my Forex Broker is giving me 400:1 leverage, and they are offering me matching funds so in essence I can now trade at 800:1. I am going to buy when stochastics are low and sell when they are high. Seems like that always is right. I will be rich in no time."

    I apologize.

    Anyway, I need some help. I need a portfolio backtesting software package. I am looking at Patsystems IQ Trader, Tradecision, and Trading Solutions. Someone mentioned Traders Studio, which is about 1/5 the price. So maybe that's an option.

    I will need to have algo trading capabilities, and would like to have NN/GA included or as an add on. I know Tradecision has this. IQ Trader has autotrade capabilities. Then there is Progress Software's Apama. I am so damn confused, and unfortunately, most of the higher end providers do not offer demos.

    Can anyone help me here with some knowledge and experience?
    Also, I am undecided on my Prime Broker yet, but for a front-end I am told J-Trader or X-Trader is the way to go (I will be trading equites, options, futures, fx). Is Redi still a player?

    Right now I have a currency portfolio (testing this FX trading stuff) through the Currenex platform. I've tried a bunch and like this one the best; however, I am still manual trading and Currenex let's me play like a trader, as opposed to those other clunky things out there. Any thoughts on sticking with Currenex as a front-end? Has anyone used there Smartorder system for Algos?

    Sorry for the long e-mail. I have been researching for months and now I am being held up because I can't make a decsion. I can't get enough info, strange as that may seem.

    Any help will be greatly appreciated.

  2. taowave


    I am going to eliminate patsystems from the discussion as i have never heard of them,and upon looking them up seem to serve a vastly different function that the other 3...

    I own Traders Studio,am demoing TradingSolutions and am looking into Tradecsion.

    TradingSolutions is a NN product so it is really a much different product than TradersStudio and Tradecision.There is a trader on the board who uses the product and is very familiar with it.His username is Makloda...Look him up,he has been quite helpful in guiding me.From the little time I have spent with TradingSolutions,it apears to be a well thought out program with an excellent user interface.Unfortunately,I can help you much past that point..

    Traders Studio is an excellent tool,though it is currently an EOD product.It has full portfolio backtesting capabilities,can backtest across multiple asset classes as well as applying money managemnt/position sizing across ones portfolio of single assets or multiple assets...If you are an equity trader,they are one of the few people who handle the nuances of equity data correctly.It may be the best backtester on the market.Charting capabilities are currently being enhanced and a new version should be comong out soon...From what I understand,they have NN add ons as well..

    Tradecision unfortunately does not offer a demo,so I cant really elaborate on the product.i do have friends who use the product and they feel it has an excellent interface asnf the charting package is quite strong.I do not know if they have added full portfolio backtesting and optimisations as of yet.They have an integrated NN package as well...Its a bit pricey as EOD costs apx $1100,so that may be a bit of a deterrent...

    I am confident in saying TradersStudio is the best backtesting portfolio tool of the 3...

  3. I own TradersStudio as well - it's a good tool for backtesting. It is particularly powerful if you want to test multiple strategies at the same time. It has the most sophisticated money management, although it also takes more work to get it there. It is, first and foremost, a programming tool. The other two tools have much more of a point-and-click interface.

    TradingSolutions, which I'm demoing, combines technical analysis, a simplified rules-based trading/backtesting interface, and robust NN and genetic algorithms for optimization. It lacks any real portfolio management/money management tools. It is a very interesting tool, but isn't a complete package.

    Tradecisions, which I have yet to demo, potentially has the complete package. They offer rules-based trading, genetic algorithms for optimization, neural networks for predictions, and money management techniques. In January they will be adding more money management/portfolio tools which I am waiting to evaluate.

    Tradecisions offers integration with Interactive Brokers - TradingSolutions offers this through an add-on.

    Hope this helps.
  4. taowave


    I do like the concept of one platform,one programming language to perform backtesting,NN and money management..Anyone out there who is using Tradecision??
  5. This is great stuff. Thanks for the input so far. I am going to try to get Tradecision to give me a demo. I will let you know.

    Nobody has mentioned the IQ Trader from Patsystems. These guys are the makers of the institutionally based J-Trader platform. IQ is their backtesting/algo-autotrading platform. I'm definitely not sure on this, but we may be overlooking a serious platform if we don't take a look. I have heard the optimization is blazingly fast and ahead of its time. Again, no demo available which pisses me off.

    Thanks again for the great comments.

    Any more info is greatly appreciated.

  6. taowave


    Just looked at the Pats IQ webpage..Nice package,but it appears that you must use Pats datafeed and esignal for EOD data....

    Any idea of what pats IQ costs.Can you purchase it or is it a monthly lease?

    Also,if youcan get a demo out of TD,let me know

  7. IQ seems to offer:
    - Simple optimization techniques - not clear whether it uses genetic algorithms.
    - Backtesting: seems to offer it for an individual strategy/instrument. I didn't see any portfolio level materials. They do say in "key benefits" that they have "Money management tools to manage trading systems" - just not sure what it means.
    - Neural networks: doesn't appear to have any.

    The product looks more interesting for a straight trader - a lot of neat tools for trading off of charts/trendlines. Pretty cool, but not really what I'm looking for - might work for you if that matches your needs.

    The general problem with all these systems is the lack of evaluation/demo copies. I'm not sure how one is supposed to decide between the systems given that. Anybody have any idea how much IQ costs?
  8. I will gather some more data on these systems today and I will let you know. I first heard about the IQ trader in Automated Trader magazine. It was a good article.

    By the way, if you don't subscibe to that magazine yet, I highly recommend it. It's free (at least for now) and I found it to be very helpful. The site is

    The October 2006 issue is not online yet, but I have it in hard copy and .pdf. Send me a PM and I will send you the article on IQ if you want it. In the meantime, I will find out the cost and also work on a demo from Tradecision.

    I just noticed that in the article there is a separate section that talks about Berkeley Futures. It seems Berkeley has been offering IQ to their traders since 2005. It mentions that a free demo of IQ is available through Berkeley. Anyway, I will check directly with Patsystems as well.

  9. taowave


    D,What is up with these companies not offering free demos??

    Are they relying on the laziness factor and assuming a certain % of people will just keep the package as opposed to sending it back???

    As for IQ,i couldnt tell if it was a lease or purchase program

  10. I think they don't want to have to support people downloading demos - which I can somewhat understand. Most offer a 30 day money-back guarantee but Tradecision, reading their policy, definitely made me feel a bit queezy about handing over the money - I wasn't sure I'd see it again. Again, they are probably a good company - haven't heard any complaints - I just didn't like the way the fine-print read.
    #10     Dec 14, 2006