Discussion in 'Automated Trading' started by Mimimy, Dec 2, 2008.

  1. Mimimy


    Let's say I have a multi million account in wich i want to trade automatically, undreds of stocks AND options.

    Tradestation is the reference about trading automation.
    The only plateform that provide, charts, analysis, backtesting ... and brokerage.
    At least that is what they say on marketing...

    I'm talking to real tradestation professional here,
    what are the bad thing about tradestation ? What are the limitations ? Are they possible to breach (using DLLs ?).

    Do you knowcompanyor peaple in this case (having developped really really complex strategy in tradestation and add-ons, including undreds of different positions?)

    May tradestation be a good choice here or the worst... ? (I'm talking only technologicaly here)

    Thanks in advance for the answers.
  2. while I'm sure there are probably some people with multi-million dollar accounts using tradestation, I'd be shocked if it was a significant number.

    tradestation is built for the mass market. if you're trading a lot of money you're going to want to be able to customize stuff to your liking and intentions.

    from a mass market perspective, tradestation is good because it's easy language is very... well, easy. it's fast to learn and it's been around a long time so there's lot of books and examples of it. it has a lot of data, it has pretty good charting capabilities.

    it's not really designed for portfolio trading though. there's some add ons to allow you to backtest more than one stock at a time, and this feature has been in developement forever... but it's not a strong suit of the product. also the data is only available through the tradestation sandbox, so again you can't really customize your own tools ontop of what they provide.

    in short, tradestation is a sandbox more than a platform.
  3. Surdo


    I would not use them for execution.

    Call tech support 1-800-822-0512, click YES to "Are you a current Brokerage customer" you do not go to sales.

    Tell me how long you are in the telephone cue on hold please...that should answer your question.

    I have a simple tech question for them and was on hold for 25 minutes before I hung up my speaker phone, I really am tired of that Al Dimeola song!
  4. Mimimy


    the best solution if you want exactly everything as you wish is to re progrm everything by youself...

    But the real question is,
    what are the tru tradestation limitation in these matters ? Or just there are none ?
    At the end, you can do all by yourself, but CAN you do in tradestation too ?
    Why not ?
  5. Tums


    Are you referring to EasyLanguage?

    or Tradestation the broker?
  6. TraDaToR


    - no bid/ask datas for automation
    - no real time datas for automation ( datas are updated every tick )
    - incredibly crappy market datas( missing sizes everywhere )

    Other than that, automation works fine with no problem, but...em...
  7. I run several fairly complex strategies in TS and it took a while to get TradeStation to a point where it was reliable enough to trade size. I run strategies on 700+ products, all intraday on a minute by minute time scale. I use Radarscreen and it generated orders via Macros - i.e. I've automated execution through RadarScreen. I've found this to be leagues better than using their chart based automated trading, RS can handle the large data influx and you can also do more with the marcos regarding orders and stops.

    Given that you get to a point where you can use Radarscreen in this manner (the learning curve is Ok) then comes the issue of TS's brokerage and data reliability. 95% of the time they are Ok, but, when the market is moving and their system tanks, they suck at customer service. You will be SOL. This has happened 4 times to me this year, but, I can tolerate that because the market activity on some days this year has been extraordinary. For the most part, TS does OK.

    The software is mediocre. They try to do a lot of stuff which makes it a jack of all trades - master of none type of tool.

    I'd say give it a shot and see if you like it. I have several backup brokers and I recommend you split up your capital among them and route signals from TradeStation to the other brokers. The problem again become data reliability (TradeStation is responsible for all signals, hence the bottleneck) in such a configuration which I am still trying to overcome.

    As a side note I've been exploring Amibroker as a custom platform for automated trading and I think there is value in that product. TS is limiting when you get to a certain point, but, it can get you pretty far.

  8. Mimimy


    I understand you use radarscreen wich is mandatory,
    my trading would be on hundreds of positions butnot on a tick per tick, maybe hourly at best.
    I also a lot use options, dio you have any experience with tradestation and options ?
    Can you explain more why TS is not a good broker ?
    And why you say the software is not so good ?

    Also, we talked about radarscreen and macros, do you have any experience with the use of the DLLs?

    Thanks again for your previous answer and in advance!
  9. Surdo


    Call tech support as "a customer", not a new account, and see if they answer the phone!

    The charts/software are fine for basic automated trading, I would use another executing broker, or have another funded account.
    (much easier in futures)

    DO NOT use TS as your only brokerage account, it will cost you eventually.
  10. As far as options I've never automated anything regarding options. When I've looked into it, my options trading relied too heavily on bid/ask data, not OHLC. TS works well for OHLC data but I've never been able to get it to use bid/ask data properly. I don't have much experience with this. What you can do is start a small account and go to the TS forums (they're only available to TS customers) and ask about options there. The TS forums are very good BTW; some of the best forum resources I have seen for any software product. There is a lot on DLL's in those forums as well, I've never played with DLL's myself so I can't help you there. I know quite a few forum members use DLLs though.

    The brokerage just doesn't care about its customers. There's always an issue getting through to the trade desk and when the markets are active, good luck getting through.

    The software (version 8.3) had some bugs... it would crash when requesting large amounts of data and sometimes not restart properly. It would also corrupt files requiring a reinstall. In general, 8.3 did not recover from intraday data failures, i.e. once it got f--ked, it would take a restart, or even a reinstall, to get things back to normal. A huge pain when you're active during the day and the thing goes down first thing in the morning. I just started using 8.4 and these problems seem to have been somewhat resolved, so they are improving.

    #10     Dec 3, 2008