Must you know how to program?

Discussion in 'Trading' started by Brianharvey, Feb 4, 2010.

  1. I've been demo trading on and off for a long time now.
    I dont feel as though i've 'wasted time' because I actually enjoy it!

    However, after all of this time, recently im starting to wonder if it is actually possible.
    I know that there are people who do make consistent money through trading just using charts/TA, but im wondering if that is simply down to luck. If there was a coin flipping competition where you were charged commisions, there would still be some people in the 'winning circle' at the end of the competition.

    However, before I completely give up on the idea of actually making any money, I want to backtest various ideas.
    However, I dont know the first thing about programming.

    Is there anyone here who trades successfully who doesn't know how to write/test/backtest codes and strategies?
  2. Brian, I'll bet that you're "book smart" but you'll never be convinced nor confident enough that you'll succeed. For you, simulated trading can be entertainment but live trading will never be a business. Because of that, don't waste time with programming nor with going from one system to another without ever opening a funded trading account. :cool:
  3. Many do including some of the best but it has a longer learning curve both in terms of time and money.
  4. programing is not necessary and backtesting is of limited value especially for someone who has never traded.
    here is a hint. trading is an art and not a science. the market is an emotional creature. emotions are sometimes not rational.
  5. Programming these days is not very difficult - the programming languages live more in the domain of the problem being solved rather than the domain of how the computer actually operates. In other words, to program about finance now you really only need to understand finance, not computers.

    If you're not willing to tackle a fairly simple task like this, or pay to have someone else tackle it, I would question your commitment to trading.
  6. spindr0


    1) I don't know what's current but there are programs that backtest (TradeStation comes to mind) and probably trading platforms as well.

    2) I've made good money trading for the past few years and I don't know a thing about programming. B/T an old charting program (Metastock) and spreadsheets, I get it done :)
  7. Why is backtesting of limited value?
    (I have actually traded live a fair but by the way, but on through bucketshops that allow me to trade at stakes that dont hurt when i inevitably get stopped out!)

    Do you just trade from the charts?
    Im told that there is a way to trade without charts, that is NOT using fundamental analysis or DOM/level2 type stuff.
    Im lost as to what else there possibly is?!
    I feel ive nearly exhausted everything on the charts front.

  8. His position, while somewhat popular on ET, is not popular in the industry and I would go so far as to say it's just wrong.

    Back testing is an essential first step for any trading system. It's not the only barrier to profitability, but ask yourself this: if you backtested a system and could find no evidence it gave decent returns, would you trade it with real money?

    In other words, a good backtest doesn't imply a system is actually going to be profitable, but bad backtests tent to imply it won't be.
  9. Metaphor: If you can afford to be picky about your car, you can afford to be picky about your backtesting.

    If you can't afford to be picky about your car, don't trade.
  10. dozu888


    learn how to trade first.

    backtesting is useless.
    #10     Feb 4, 2010