Suggestions for Software and other misc.

Discussion in 'Trading Software' started by demonet, Sep 20, 2003.

  1. demonet


    I am signing up with Point Direx as my broker...they are cheap (as everyone seems to know), and reliability in the above-average area. I just want to play stocks and options (unforntunately no E-minis at the moment) for now. PD says they have a great charting package with their platinum platform, and to tell you the truth is n't bad, but I do want to get into writing/modifying oscilatiors/ trend indicators, use fibonaccis, and a few more things which PD doesn't appear that they can do at the moment.

    BTW, I will mostly swing trading until I can inch my equity to meet the PDT rule.

    I want to find a cheap chart provider who can let me do research up to 2-4 years back and be able to save charts, etc., back test if possible, and generally be able to really get a handle on my slightly ambitious chart needs Sunday night in anticipation for those Monday morning out of the gate frenzies.

    I had considered usting QT, but they do not take the data feed from PD as of yet (supposedly soon).

    SWP seems like a goo choice, but they use as a data feed. I am a bit new to this, but it seems to have two different data feeds, one from PD and one from for SWP, a lot more errors are likely to arise.

    Am I just overly concerned, or should I look for more integration between by broker, chart provider and quote provider?

    And, for those of you who love to share opinions, I would happy to hear what you suggest. I am already set up, or will be set up soon with PD, so now I just need a comprehensive means to do my after hours chart research, and some sort of programming (API) ability for scanning. If it is feasible and prudent (and cheap), I will get a chart provider with its own data feed, but it just seems riskier...but maybe I am wrong.

    Can this be done for under $40/month?

    Coda: I hear a lot of thumbs-up for They sound good, but I have not looked to deeply into them. Can anyone give me the flexibility facor of this add-on. Can I virtually come up with any formula for scanning? I am failry proficient in many languages (PHP, java, VB, C++ (a little anyway), but just want to have the flexibility to come up with scans and alerts that I want without too much hassle. Can you recommend any chart-providers that offer this?


    I read "Come into My Trading Room", and I have always been a slow, methodical trader, but that book made me feel like I might as well go back to the dictionary (a la Homer Simpson when he was learning "Marketing" for the bowling alley..

    Me after Elder's book: Dictionary: Stock Market: "1 : a place where security trading is conducted on an organized system
    2 : an association of people organized to provide an auction market among themselves for the purchase and sale of securities"

  2. Save your money by choosing IB instead of PD and you will also get plenty of free apps that work with IB, such as QT or BT2003. To trade stocks you don't need anything that even remotely approaches a silver level not to mention a platinum one.
  3. H2O


    I think it's better to have 2 separate datafeeds. You can (and should) always doublecheck before you enter a trade. has a very good charting package but their datafeed quality isn't the best around. (Do a search on this board)

    eSignal is better, and I believe they have an eSignal equities basic subscription that should work for you.

    Since you're planning on swing trading, do you NEED real time data other than your trading platform ? If not, you can consider EOD data as well. There're some pretty good packages out there.(TC2000, CSI (which I use))

    Hope this helps
  4. demonet


    Thank you for you input everyone. I am not too proud to say that while I have used traded the old Ameritrade way (web-based brokers with orders filled in 30-45 seconds), and yes, I will be mostly swing trading, I am completely unfamiliar with putting together a beginner package to trade stocks/options (and futures if possible). Further, I also plan to take advantage of my alloted 4 intraday trades, so I would like real-time data, and a level II screen.

    If I was to go with PD, the platinum version just seems to have more charting options (still lacking somewhat when viewed with an eye toward the future and more complex TA) and the ability to have more stocks active during your session. Other than that, I see no big deal in paying 10-15 more for the platinum over some of the less expensive versions.

    Honestly, I have struggled for 6 weeks now over a broker, and everytime I look at IB in a positive light for their large variety of services and cheaper commissions, I see so many many things (i.e. posts on these boards) that make me think that IB could ultimately be a headache for someone like me who may not understand how to intgrate everything right away, and as such I would like some quick and easy tech support...I also have only one PC for now, and if need be in real time, I would like to be able to plug in data quickly to get an idea if my plan is going awry. I may be wrong on this of course, but whenever I am reading the IB reviews here, there are just too many disgruntled customers!

    If I trade well, and do things cautiously (and I know these are famous last words), I hope to gradually increase my starting 10K equity to trade intraday, and at that point I do not want to have to reinvent the wheel by reselecting brokers, chart providers, etc, but instead just upgrade with my exisitng providers. I have heard that PD will have the ability to trade futures soon, and right now, they are so responsive/knowledgeable on the phone that my comfort with them is quite high (and they are as cheap and fast as they come, from what I have read here).

    H2O, I would love to use eSignal, but their basic equities version doesn't seem to have too many advanced charting options and no scanner, which I would prefer. But then no one addressed my questions yet....

    So, from what I get from everyone so far is that my best choices would be:

    PD and eSignal Equities package---> ($40 (& low commissions) for PD +$104)/mo for eSignal


    IB and QT (or TWS?) ---> ($70? monthly fee & low commissions +$7 (QT))

    I apologize for any ignorance here, and hope that you will inform me on these matters with patience.

    I thought I could get "paraylsis from analysis" when just analyzing charts, but when it trying to get a value in selecting what I need at this point, I am going crazy!!

    Any who have more suggestions, please be forthcoming.

  5. There are no monthly fees for the IB+QT combo except the 10 buck fee for the data if you do not trade frequently enough and do not pay at least $30 in commissions per month although even this could only be for futures and not stocks. I trade futures mostly, so I am not quite sure if that $10 fee applies also to stocks. I would say no, but perhaps someone can correct me.

    So IB is definitely a way to go, IMHO.
  6. demonet


    If I do go with IB, can someone tell me what their TWS platform offers, and would going with QT be enough? Reason: although it is not crucial at this moment, I was hoping to apply some of my recent knowledge regarding fibonacci studies to price charts and really was hoping to find a chart provider who would offer this feature that would cost less than $60/mo...but that when was when I thought I was going to be paying 40/mo for PD.

    But from electron it sounds like there are no monthly IB fees, save commissions....

    So, electron if you could confirm, if I was to go with IB and also the eSignal equities (not basic) package, I would only be paying the $104/month for esignal and my commissions to IB (unless I trade too infrequently with IB) as IB does not charge a monthly fee for data/software, etc.?

    Thanks again for your patience!

  7. demonet


    Sorry to keep adding to this thread, but I have been doing a 180 degree turn-around on IB thanks to Electron.

    However, since it is late saturday night, can anyone help me on this pricing?

    I am going to get the non-pro US bundle (for IB), but I want level II, so does that mean I am going to have to pay for level II (at $79/mo) through IB in order to get level II info on eSignal?

    Sheesh! this is confusing! But if that is the case than I would be paying $79 for IB plus $179 for esignal equities (-$50 for 2 months as part of their special). I was under the impression that I could get the data feed for free (unless I traded too infrequently) and that eSignal would provide the level II display (but I guess logic would dictate that I need level II DATA, right?).

    I don't want to be impulsive, but I am in the middle of signing up for both as we speak because I have been wringing my hands over the best package(s) to get for weeks and I wanted to just jump in and do it....and I thought IB + eSignal was going to work, but this Level II screen charge of $79 is going to make it quite difficult (or at least out of my budget).

    Can anyone help me here????

    Thanks, Parker

    Thanks again for the hand-holding.....
  8. if you are signing up for Level II from eSignal, then you do not need to sign up for Level II from IB.

    As for Quotetracker integration with XoomTrade/PointDirex, that should be completed shortly
  9. reg


    You are thinking and agonizing too much. A trader needs to make quick decisions day in and day out.
    Do your own research and just go for it. Quit going round in circles.
  10. demonet


    I am not trading. I am PREPARING to trade. Do you make quick decisions when you are going over your data/charts and indicators during non-market hours?

    I am setting up a foundation that I want to work as best as possible at the best value (that doesn't mean dirt cheap), so when I am actually trading and I need to make quick decisions, the last thing I will have to worry about are the tools I selected at the outset.

    OK...but I just signed up with IB, and will sign up with esignal (equities) when I get approved from IB.

    Thanks for everyone's help. I feel like I got a lot accomplished and I am thankful I can turn to you guys when I have questions. It is very rare that I see anybody flaming or being malicious on these boards and that gives me a little comfort.

    One last question (and I did check other threads on this with no real answer at least which I understood).... I am running XP and it has VM...are there any benefits/downsides in choosing the standalone TWS v. the browser based TWS?

    Thanks ya kindly,

    #10     Sep 21, 2003