Hey guys

Discussion in 'Automated Trading' started by ClarkFX, May 29, 2012.

  1. ClarkFX


    Hey everyone,

    My name is Clark, I've been lurking around this forum for a bit and decided I should probably create and account and start posting.

    A little bit about me.. I've been trading FX profitably for 3 of the 4 years now, mostly manual and discretionary, and in the last year have started studying and going the automated route. It's something I always wanted to get into.

    I'd say I'm good with a computer (but then again, what 18-19 year old isn't) but unfortunately, I have little to none programming experience, but I am starting to learn slowly, DBs, C++, Java, etc. Although I do know a bit about webdesign (HTML, CSS, PHP).

    In terms of trading, I'd say I'm experienced with most aspects of system development (backtesting, walkforward analysis, money management, etc), I have knowledge in HFT, arbitrage and concepts that require a decent amount of research to understand; so I'm not a complete dummy.

    Just in the last 3-4 months, I had actually worked with a software developer in creating my own custom automated trading platform. Unfortunately, he lived in Greece and we've had to abandon the project as a whole.

    So now I am left with nothing, but am ready to work and start on my ATS from scratch again.

    I intend to stay here for the long run and hope to learn what I can from individuals who are already well set on their way with their own ATS.

    Anyways, just wanted to say hi. :)

  2. januson


    Welcome Clark :)

    I wish you good luck in your journey, it's a very interesting path you've entered.

    I've been in this game since 1999 and started to program for 10 years ago, though not trading software which I started to spend my spare time in for a couple of years ago.

    I've tried/ bought Wealthlab, tried/ bought Multicharts and tried MetaTrader 4 and 5, unfortunately none of them satisfied me :p
  3. Dom84


    Hi Clark and Januson,

    I think everyone is in search of the holy grail - the fool proof ATS. I spent more than 10 years manually back testing various strategies until I came across a young chap who was actually able to codify it for me and I've never looked back. If you keep at it for long enough you will get there but it does take ages.

    If you want more info on how it all came into focus please feel free to email me at emac.84@bigpond.com

    I know how frustrating it can be and the countless hours put in whilst trying to develop something. My only advise really is to keep it as simple as possible and don't try to overthink it. It has to become "monkey see monkey do"

    Cheers and good luck,

  4. ClarkFX


    Hi Januson and Dom84,

    Thanks for your replies and welcoming. I appreciate you guys telling me a little about your background.

    See, what is hindering my development of my ATS is I am lacking the technical experience and knowledge to set up the infrastructure whether that is hardware and/or software. So I'd love to hear more from you guys about that. And actually, came here specifically to learn more about. Of course knowledge on system development, and other aspects of ATSs, I could do more with learning as well.

    I've looked into the commercial automated platforms and backtesters in the past (MultiCharts, TradeStation, WealthLab, NinjaTrader) and have come to decide that I'd do better taking the time and resources in starting on the right foot by creating my own software. I might as well do it initially before I get too deep in a certain aspect that it will become more tasking to switch over. At the same time, it seems that the general consensus on starting a serious ATS venture would be to go custom. Fortunately, I've some of profits from trading saved up, as well as some investors looking to invest in the low 6 figures, so I'm fortunate to have the funding for something like this.

    What do you guys think? What are your current approaches?

  5. Dom84


    To be perfectly honest with you Clark, and given what you have just written I don't feel you are ready to go down this track unless I am mistaken - and that is no offence meant.

    Have you got a trading plan established that you want to automate?

    How robust is it when you back test it manually?

    What is the time frame you want to trade?

    Do you want to be a trader, investor or a scalper?

    Do you want your system to be robust enough to be able to trade indices, equities, FX etc. or just one instrument?

    I would hate to see you waste all your trading profits and more trying to develop a fool proof system before you have addressed any of these issues let alone all of them and probably more.

    Certainly you do want to customize something special which I understand perfectly but every system needs to be tweaked from time to time to adapt to varying market conditions. My partner and I have had to do that. Without the technical expertise you will again have to pay someone to do this for you.

    If you are paying someone to do this for you I would just hate to think how much it would cost. Also, unless you build it yourself, you have no control over who knows what your parameters are and your system could be developed at great expense to yourself and then be leaked out for commercial purposes. We are going live in the USA in July, and even our web designer there doesn't know how our system works. His job is to design the site to meet the requirements of the USA. We are the only 2 who know what the parameters are.

    You may find you spent all your trading profits and that of your backers and still have nothing to show for it.

    I hope I have not offended you. It is just that after almost 12 years of working on this stuff - I know how difficult it is. I was just lucky I found a business partner who could take my trading plan and codify it. I'd hate to see you totally shafted.

    I totally understand and admire your enthusiasm - but encourage you to think it through well and truly before you throw money at it.

    My email address is in the other post if you want any further info. I've been trying to address a few people from many sources who want to build an ATS.

  6. ClarkFX


    Hey Dom,

    Thanks for the advice, I don't take things into offense that easily. I'll take a closer look at what you've said and analyze my current circumstances as well. I appreciate the help. :)

  7. ClarkFX


    Thank you for the welcome ElectricSavant. :) I didn't mean to start a ruckus so soon. ;)