Trade Management Software Selection

Discussion in 'Order Execution' started by amtrak, Dec 30, 2003.

  1. amtrak


    I originally put this on page 23 of another thread,
    but decided to give this thought a shot at its own thread:

    After daytrading stocks for a very short while with IB,
    using trailing stops by right-clicking a not-yet-transmitted order,
    I discovered (of necessity) that e-mini futures trading
    requires fast bracket order capability.

    I read the posts here to great advantage, and then tried:
    - Autotrader (very nice software but not intuitive or graphical);
    - BracketTrader (again very nice,
    but not friendly with more than one instrument);
    - FuturesTrader (very feature-rich but non-intuitive);
    - ButtonTrader (beautiful but $50/mo.,
    and the tick charts "excite me" into overtrading,
    while the vertical tape representation led to overtight stops);
    - ZeroLineTrader.

    ZeroLineTrader was an eye-opener --
    it takes the IB quote sheet,
    and adds all the required button functionality
    to one-click submit and manage bracket orders
    for multiple contracts and multiple instruments.

    There has been one further step in the evolution, though --
    when I saw ZeroLineTrader's minimalist set of function buttons.
    I realized that IB's order defaults and hotkeys
    could be combined to provide all the same functionality,
    in almost as few clicks, with only a few cryptic key combinations.

    So what I'm on now is:
    - separate order defaults for each instrument to set trailing stop offsets,
    with an order type of "market" to be used by the "Close" function;

    - hotkeys to adjust limit and aux prices (limit via home/insert or
    left/right arrows, aux via end/page-up or up/down arrows);

    - shortcuts for mouse left-clicks to sell-at-bid and buy-at-ask
    (with a trailing stop bracket order);

    - a shortcut to close the position (at market)
    after left-click in the Position field;

    - shortcuts to buy-at-last after shift+left-click on Last Price,
    and sell-at-last after alt+left-click on Last Price.

    And the little beastie of a configuration works slick.
  2. amtrak


    My usage of IB with hotkeys/shortcuts has hit a snag --
    although I prefer trailing stops without profit targets,
    and that's what I used in testing,
    the capability of trailing stops WITH profit targets MUST be there,
    and IB only allows specification of trailing stop OR bracket order
    (the "trailing amt" field doesn't gray out but it's unuseable if bracket is selected).

    Oh well, back to ZeroLine Trader.
  3. DaveN



    Please state whether you have any affiliation with ZeroLine. With only three posts, I have to say I'm a bit suspiscious. It's hard to tell if that's just your first topic of interest, or if you are pumping the product without paying ET for that privilege....
  4. amtrak


    No, no affiliations here.

    Devoted to trading, through a more general interest in my bank balance (and this site has helped A LOT).

    I'm a newb and I feel like a full-time software evaluator/user with all the packages I've installed, tailored to my trading and then discarded after finding something with a better "focus".

    My post detailed my battle to find trade management software;
    other recent software selection problems included:
    - charting (ending with eSignal because it allowed me to program my own support/resistance lines); and
    - backtesting (starting with Tradestation for purchased-from-vendor S&P daytrade systems and ending with WLD 3 for backtesting MULTIDAY trading systems).

    And if anyone knows how to get IB to do a bracket order from a hotkey/shortcut that includes profit target and trailing stop,
    let me know....