Saturday, July 3, 2010

Trading Systems for Metastock

Trading systems for Metastock usually use indicators and oscillators known from the technical analysis. Apart form simple systems which are based on one or two indicators, there are also many complex platforms that are able to adapt themselves to the current market conditions. They recognize whether there is a trend or consolidation and choose the most suitable strategy.
Metastock trading systems enable testing your individual trading ideas based on historical data which makes it easier to take decisions on their future use. Although creating and testing the Metastock trading systems is usually time-consuming and requires considerable expertise, it brings profits in the long term. To earn high profits you should combine particular tools of technical analysis into one coherent and logic integrity. While building a Metastock trading system you need to make sure it is logic and coherent, not only thinking of the possible profits it could bring you based on historic data. First of all you should define the operating conditions of the system, when it should be unbeaten and when it might fail. This will let you check if the eventual losses result from the error in the strategy itself or it is due to particular market conditions. When the system is built randomly with accidental indicators and oscillators selection, it often generates profits only in the case of the historical data but in the real market conditions it brings losses. The parameters of trading systems are usually being matched to the historical data by optimization. It consists of choosing such indicators that would bring the highest profit in the testing period. Different values of parameters are checked for each indicator or oscillator and then the possible profit that would have been reported is being calculated. The next step includes combining the outcomes and choosing the most profitable parameters. There is a risk of over-optimizing the system. That means that the values of tested indicators failed to match the historical data without logic and cohesion of the strategy.
After understanding the general idea of the trading system and defining the rules of entering and exiting the market there comes a testing process. Thanks to the programs such as Metastock or TradeStation it is possible to make thousands of tests in order to choose the best parameters of the indicators. It is possible if you follow several rules. In both of them setting the value of indicators lies at the end. They are usually connected with generally accepted value or with the ones selected in the optimization process. Both ways have their own advantages and disadvantages but none of them should be rejected beforehand. The selection of the parameters for indicators should be considered according to the philosophy of the entire system and its tools. At the same time however, taking into account the accepted assumptions, the decision about their precise value shall proceed to a larger extent by optimization.
The second most important issue, apart from optimizing parameters of the metastock trading system, is evaluating its efficiency. In order to do it you can use various statistics such as the proportion of the profitable transactions to the lost ones, comparison of the average transaction profit to the highest loss or average profit of profitable transaction to the transaction at a loss. Safety of the system is also defined by a proportion of total profit from all transactions to total loses from all transactions. The analysis of the capital curve is also a useful tool. It brings a lot of precious advice. Thanks to the capital curve you can easily find out whether the profit, which the system brings you, has risen evenly or it was the result of the one very profitable transaction. You will also know how often and how strong the changes of the capital are etc. By comparing the capital curve with the quotation, you can easily notice the moments when the system fails or define whether the system is better during strong trends or during horizontal movements.
Evaluation of the Metastock trading system efficiency is not a simple task. At the beginning you can get the wrong impression that the best system is the one that brings the highest profit. But the truth is much more complicated. Although in a final reckoning the rate of return from invested capital is always important, you should remember that system is tested based on historical data which usually are matched to the value of parameters. It means that a good result which was achieved in the last year doesn’t necessarily have to be repeated in the next period. That is why first of all we should take into account the safety of the system and as the second thing its profitability.