SimpleAutoTrading Software

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Contents

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Automated trading now accounts for the majority of orders executed in Forex: in the US alone, about 70% of daily transactions are made by automatic trading software!

Why? If you’ve done much Forex trading, you’ll know how exhausting trading can be, especially if something goes wrong. There are traders who dream of a partner who is intelligent, not exposed to emotions, logical, always looking for profitable trades, and who can execute those trades almost immediately. If you’re looking for all of that and more, look no further – these qualities also describe automated trading software.

Automatic trading software can be used to trade a range of markets, including Forex, stocks, commodities, cryptocurrencies and more. The software simply analyses the market, and opens a trade so you don’t need to carry it out manually. In a nutshell, with automated software you can turn on your trading terminal, activate the program and then walk away while the software trades for you.

In this article, we’ll share an introduction to automated trading software, including:

  1. What is automated trading software?
  2. How how automatic trading software works
  3. Who can use auto trading programs
  4. The advantage and disadvantages of Forex trading programs
  5. Different financial markets for auto trading software
  6. How to start automated trading

What is automated trading software?

Before we can cover what automated Forex software is, we need to start with the basics: What is automated trading?

Simply, there are two types of trading:

  1. Manual trading
  2. Automatic trading

Manual trading is when you manually open and close trades in your trading platform. Automatic trading, on the other hand, is when a software program analyses the market and places a trade based on predefined parameters.

Automated trading software, also known as Expert Advisors or EAs, can open and close trading positions without human intervention. Some automatic software uses technical analysis to make algorithmic trading decisions, while others use economic news to place orders.

How does automated trading software work?

Automated Forex trading software analyses market information in order to make trading decisions. This information might include currency price charts, economic news and events, spread fluctuations, and other market activity.

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By analysing this data, using criteria that has been programmed by the trader, the software identifies trading signals and generate a purchase or sell alert based on those criteria. On this alert, the software can be programmed to automatically carry out the trade.

In summary, the functions Forex auto trading software can carry out include:

  1. Market analysis, including technical analysis and fundamental analysis based on your trading strategy
  2. Opening trades automatically when the specified conditions are met
  3. Closing open positions according to the specified conditions (take profit, stop loss, reversal . )
  4. Risk management, through limiting the size of open positions or the number of open positions you have at any one time

If you have a Forex trading strategy with an automated approach, you can program your automatic trading software to analyse and trade the markets 24 hours a day, which allows you to seize all potential trading opportunities.

Having said that, although trading algorithms can be great tools, keep in mind that using Forex trading program does not guarantee a profit. The results will depend on the strategy used, and a winning strategy may become a loser if market conditions change.

Are you ready to start automated trading? Then you can try out a range of different tools FREE with Admiral Markets?

How? The process is simple:

  1. Sign up for a free demo account.
  2. Download and install MetaTrader 5.
  3. Download and install MetaTrader Supreme Edition.
  4. Open MetaTrader on your computer, and sign in using your demo account details.

Then you can start using free Expert Advisors to see how automated trading works!

Who can use automated Forex trading software?

Hypothetically, newbies, experienced professional traders and seasoned Forex traders can benefit from using FX trading software to make their trading decisions.

In fact, automated trading software is available for a wide range of prices with varying levels of sophistication to meet different needs. Fortunately, most programs offer a free demo period along with other incentives to buy, which gives you the opportunity to see if a Forex trading program is a good match for you.

What are the advantages of automated Forex trading programs?

Now that we’ve covered how automated trading software works, what are the benefits of using tools like this?

The first advantage of automated trading programs is the removal of emotional and psychological influences when trading. Automated software makes your trading decisions consistent and unemotional, exploiting parameters you have pre-defined, or the default setting you have previously installed.

Many traders – both beginners and experienced – often make trades for emotional reasons. They see there is a lot of activity in the GBP/USD, for example, and they don’t want to miss a potentially profitable trade. Or they see a trade going badly, and manually close it before their strategy says they should. With automated trading, emotional decisions and lapses of judgement do not happen.

Automated software pushes you to clearly set out your trading strategy, rules and objectives in order to program the algorithm, so this forces you to set rules and stick to them!

Next, for currency speculators who make trades based currency spreads, auto Forex trading software can be effective. This is because price discrepancies are instantaneously apparent, the information is immediately read by the trading system and consequently a trade is executed.

Additionally, automated software programs also enable traders to manage multiple accounts at the same time, which is a real plus that is not easily available to manual trades on a single computer. This allows you to seize many opportunities simultaneously, along with running complementary strategies at the same time. For instance, with the right software you could run a scalping strategy and a different day trading strategy for the same financial asset.

For serious Forex traders who have other interests, occupations, or obligations, automated software or an automated Forex trading robot can save considerable time that could otherwise be devoted to other important activities such as studying the markets, analysing different charts, or watching for various events that influence currency prices.

Automated FX trading systems allow you to free yourself from your computer monitor, while the software scans the market, looks for trading opportunities and makes trades on your behalf.

In addition, MetaTrader 4 & 5 applications on iPhone, Android and tablet allow you to easily monitor your trading account wherever you are.

One final benefit of Forex auto trading software is that the marketing incentives to buy specific packages, which might give you extra tools for trading.

While there are many benefits to trading with automated trading software, keep in mind that this is not a recommendation on our part to use automatic trading.

What are the disadvantages of Forex auto trading?

As with any tool, automated Forex trading software comes with disadvantages as well as benefits. Some of these include:

  1. Scams related to the sale of autonomous trading software – not every program out there will perform the way you want it to, which can make it easy to spend money with no benefit.
  2. Lack of knowledge in computer and algorithmic programming – given the previous point, it’s important to understand how your automated trading program works. If you don’t have strong programming or computer knowledge, you might struggle to get the most out of auto trading.
  3. The financial cost of using a professional coder – if you can’t code, you can hire people to create Forex and currency trading programs for you. However, these people can get expensive quite quickly.
  4. The lack of systematic trading training – beyond programming knowledge, it’s also important to have a clear trading system for the trading bot to follow. If you don’t, then you will struggle to see the benefits of automated trading software.

These are the four most common challenges faced by beginners to automated trading. If you are an experienced auto trader, you may encounter other difficulties related to advanced trading strategies.

Remember to take into account these considerations when creating your trading strategy and your algorithm! This will save you some nasty surprises.

Which financial markets are the best for using automated trading software?

Automated trading programs are not all made equal, and it’s important to consider the markets you want to trade when choosing the right one for you. In particular, it is important to apply your strategy in markets that are more likely to provide good trading conditions, but also constant movements on a regular basis.

In our experience, auto traders trade three major markets: Forex, indices and cryptocurrencies. In the following sections, we’ll share the advantages of using automated trading for trading these three markets via CFDs ( Contracts for Difference).

Benefits of automatic Forex trading

  1. Enjoy high volatility every day on dozens of currency pairs.
  2. Get 24/7 continuous quotes, trade any time of day and night.
  3. Take advantage of the strong liquidity of the foreign exchange market, with about $5 trillion in transactions every day.
  4. Many Forex auto traders are available on the world’s two leading trading platforms, MetaTrader 5 and MetaTrader 4. These are the world’s most popular platforms for manual and algorithmic trading.

Benefits of automatic trading on index CFDs

  • Auto trading index CFDs is ideal for day traders. Stock markets open and close at a fixed time, which means your trading session can therefore be limited to trading hours without having to monitor an algorithm continuously.
  • Take advantage of open market movements and strategies developed around gaps in the market open, and market ranges.
  • Tight spread can limit transaction costs, making smaller trades more profitable.
  • Indices reflect news from economy and major companies, meaning you can choose an automated trading program that is triggered by fundamental analysis alerts.

Automatic trading on cryptocurrencies

With the large movements in cyptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ripple and Ethereum over the past few years, many traders are looking at automated trading strategies for crypto.

Cryptocurrencies are an interesting market for trading algorithms, in that they regularly experiences peaks of volatility. On the other hand, they also experience long periods of range-bound movements.

The advantage of an automatic algorithm is to be able to take advantage of opportunities during peak volatility without the need to monitor the market constantly. In addition, the cryptocurrency market is open seven days a week!

However, be aware that the crypto market is still new and unregulated, so avoid purchasing any automated trading software that is specifically designed for crypto. Instead, focus on software that can trade a range of markets, which you can then program for your cryptocurrency trading needs.

Want to try automatic trading for popular cryptocurrencies, like Bitcoin, Litecoin and Ethereum? Then click the banner below to learn about the different crypto CFDs offered by Admiral Markets.

What’s the best time for auto trading Forex?

The best times to use automated trading software are:

  1. When economic publications and speeches are released by major market players
  2. When technical analysis is at its most reliable

During major publications, markets tend to experience significant movements, which is why many traders specialise in using automated trading based on the economic calendar.

Forex trading software can be programmed to monitor regular economic events, like the announcement of the US unemployment rate. The software can then open an automatic trade following the movements caused by the announcement, as soon as the announcement has been made.

Let’s consider a concrete example:

  • If US unemployment rate is lower than expected, an automated trading system can be triggered to go long on USD and US indices when the price closes above a simple or exponential moving average of a certain period.
  • If the US unemployment rate is higher than expected, the auto software can make short trades when the price closes below a simple or exponential moving average of a certain period.

The other good time to use automated trading software is when technical signals are at their most reliable. When is this?

The best times to activate automated trading systems happen to be when there is no economic data on the calendar, which means assets are more likely to respond reliably technical levels such as major support and resistance.

How to create an automated Forex trading system

To create an automated trading system – one that can be mastered with automated Forex programs – you’ll need to start with you trading strategy.

Simply, a trading program needs rules to follow, and if you are unable to give it those rules (whether you program it yourself or hire someone to do it), it won’t be able to operate effectively. To do this, you will need to:

  1. Develop a trading plan based on your capital and risk tolerance.
  2. Develop an automatic trading strategy with very precise conditions for taking positions and analysing the market. This might be linked to economic announcements, or certain technical levels.
  3. Integrate trend analysis with a filter, to define whether the system should seek to buy or sell (e.g. a moving average).
  4. The precise characteristics of a buy or sell signal depending on whether the trend filter is bullish or bearish (e.g. breaking the last peak for a long position or breaking the last trough for a short position).

By following the four steps above, you will be able to create your own automatic trading system, with the first two steps being essential prerequisites for the creation of your Expert Advisor.

Note the importance of accurate conditions for opening or closing positions. If the instructions are not clear and precise, your system will not perform the desired operations, or perform financial transactions other than those desired.

How to start auto trading Forex

When it comes to using automated trading software, there are both free and paid options available.

How to do free automated trading

Free auto trading simply means you are programming your own automated trading software, rather than buying one of the currency trading programs available on the markets.

To do this, you will need to:

  1. Create a trading strategy with clear rules and triggers for opening and closing trades.
  2. Code that strategy into an Expert Advisor that is compatible with your trading program.
  3. If you haven’t already, download a free trading platform, usually available via your broker. (At Admiral Markets, we offer traders MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5).

If you don’t have the skills to code your own forex trading program, Admiral Markets offers the MetaTrader Supreme Edition plugin for free to all live and demo account holders.

MetaTrader Supreme Edition is a tool for MetaTrader that has a range of exclusive indicators and Expert Advisors (or automated trading programs) that you can use to supercharge your trading. For example, the free software trader EA Admiral Correlation Matrix calculates the correlations between several instruments and markets, giving you a clear picture of the correlated movements of the financial markets – and is 100% free.

Another example is the Admiral Donchian flag which has an alert to warn you of the breakout of a major price level. All free automatic trading software is not intended to open positions – some only serve to send signals and alerts to the trader.

If you’re ready to get started, click the banner below to download MetaTrader Supreme Edition today!

How to do paid automated trading

There are a number of paid options for automated trading.

Once you’ve created your trading strategy, the first option is hiring a professional programmer to build an EA, and then to test it on your trading platform to ensure its effectiveness.

If you decide to have your Expert Advisor MT4 or MT5 develop by a professional, the bill will depend on the complexity of your strategy. As a general rule, the more complex the program is, the more it will cost you.

Option 2 is to download a paid automatic trading software from the MetaTrader Market, accessible from the MetaTrader platform in the ‘Market’ window.

Option 3 is to find an automatic trading program on a third party website.

For options 2 and 3 to be their most effective, it’s important to take the time to learn about the Forex software and check the opinions of users and the strategy used. The main risk lies in mastering the trading strategy of the algorithm. In order to use the automatic Forex trading software correctly, you must understand the strategy it uses.

When you are buying from third-party sites, also be wary of unscrupulous sites that may be selling losing algorithms and using false advertising. If this is a concern for you, do not hesitate to buy a Forex algorithm from a serious developer who can explain the implemented strategy.

Automated trading in MetaTrader

While there are a range of trading platforms that accommodate automated Forex trading, the world’s most popular platform is MetaTrader. Both MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5 offer traders access to a wide range of markets (thousands, with Admiral Markets!) from a single platform, along with advanced charting functionality.

The platforms are also compatible with Expert Advisors (EAs), which allow you to carry out trades automatically.

To add an expert advisor to your MetaTrader chart is very simple:

  1. Select the chart where you would like to add an EA.
  2. Click the “Navigation” panel.
  3. Expand the “Expert Advisors” menu, followed by the “Advisors” menu.
  4. Select your preferred EA and drag it onto the chart. You can also double click on it to apply it to an MT4 or MT5 chart.
  5. Fill the desired parameters into the popup window.
  6. In the “Common” tab, check “Allow Automated Trading”.

Source: Metatrader 5

How to Optimise an MT4 or MT5 Expert Advisor

  1. Type Ctrl+R to open the strategy tester.
  2. Choose an indicator or MT4 EA to test.
  3. Select the symbol (instrument) you want to trade.
  4. Define the unit of time on which the EA will operate
  5. Indicate the spread that the EA will use to simulate positions taken in the past.
  6. Check the “Optimisation” box.
  7. Click “Expert properties” to customise your MetaTrader optimisation.

Source: Optimisation Parameters, Admiral Markets MT4

Once these parameters are customised, all you have to do is press ‘Start’ to start the optimisation!

How to Analyse an MT4 or MT5 Optimisation Report

Once the optimisation is finished, you can go to the results in the ‘Optimisation Results’ tab. The different results can be sorted by:

  • Profit
  • Total number of automatic trades
  • Profit factor
  • Expected payoff
  • Drawdown $
  • Drawdown %
  • Input parameters

You just have to choose the best results to find the parameters that best match the time period tested.

You also have an optimisation graph that looks like the following image:

Source: Chart Optimisation, MT4 Admiral Markets

Beware, very often novice traders who use a trading program tend to fall into over-optimisation and find themselves using an approach doomed to failure because the parameters of their automated Forex systems will be optimised too accurately for a defined period of time established in the past.

Thus, during the periods of future trading, the particular trader who employs such a system will see results very different than those obtained in his backtests, so it is not uncommon to see an automated strategy be largely successful in the past but losing thereafter!

Is optimisation really useful?

If you only optimise a few parameters and your automatic system is dynamic and includes the price action reading, you will be more likely to avoid over-optimising your systematic approach.

On the other hand, it is useless, or even counterproductive, to seek to over-optimise an expert advisor. Finally, if you run several optimisations on your EA, consider changing the dates of the backtests, so that the algorithm is tested on different market context.

4 elements of an automatic trading strategy

Now that you know how to start auto Forex trading, with both free and paid options, as well as the steps to get started in MetaTrader, we will outline four elements that can help you choose the best automated trading strategy.

Keep in mind that these elements don’t guarantee the effectiveness of any automated trading strategy or trading robot, it is only a guide to get your started. Following these steps, however, will help minimise the emotional aspect of your trading and maintain your trading discipline.

1. Strategy logic

The first thing you should consider before an automatic trading strategy is the logic behind the strategy. Here it is useful to consider:

  • Objective benefits
  • Risks
  • Stop losses
  • Momentum
  • Rank
  • Trend

Never underestimate the market conditions in which you will apply your strategy. Not all strategies work in all market environments. You must first consider the environment you are in, and then apply the strategy that works best.

2. Input and output signals

A large number of traders spend a lot of time worrying about the input and output signals in an automated Forex strategy. It is important to understand the general logic implied by the strategy, although we should not overestimate every operation the strategy makes.

In general, this strategy is a start for hundreds or even thousands of operations to come. Try to analyse the performance of the operations as a whole and not individually.

When you review your operations:

  1. Place your winning and losing operations in different places.
  2. Calculate the average of your winning and losing operations, considering a set of at least 10 operations
  3. Ask yourself: The net result of my last 10 operations has been positive or negative, how many pips have I generated or lost?
  4. Try to replicate the winning operations with higher returns.

3. Market conditions

Previously, we mentioned the importance of choosing the right automated trading software for the market in which you are trading. More often than not, traders forget this step.

There are two different types of market conditions. We will define these conditions as:

These two conditions are mutually exclusive. When the market is in a trend, prices are constant and progressing in the same direction. An upward trend is one with higher highs and lower lows, while a downward trend has a series of lower highs and lower lows.

Ranges, on the other hand, are formed when the market is not moving up or down but the price is consolidating. Generally a price will fluctuate between an upper and a lower limit, known as support and resistance levels.

When choosing an automated trading strategy, neither type of market is better or worse – the only thing that should worry you is what kind of market condition your automated Forex strategy is based on.

4. Leverage

Now let’s see the last item on our list: leverage. This is an area that is commonly missed by automated FX operators.

Most of the time, traders expect too much from automated trading strategies before using them. This can lead them to trade with high levels of leverage. And while leverage has the power to amplify your profits, it has the same magnifying effect on any losses.

The danger with automated trading software is that many traders tend to only look at the positive aspects of a strategy and ignore potential losses. This then causes them to choose higher levels of leverage than they should based on their available capital, and can quickly lead to large losses if market conditions change or the Forex bot doesn’t perform as expected.

For this reason, when using automated software, we suggest using effective leverage no more than 10 times. If you are just starting out, you can consider even a lower level, for example 5 times the amount you want to invest.

The benefit of using smaller amounts of leverage is that if your FX strategy experiences a reduction, you only risk a small part of your account and, therefore, you would have much more capital left to negotiate, compared to using higher amounts of leverage..

We hope this checklist helps you towards successful automatic trading. You will begin to implement the best automated trading strategy properly using the right leverage and performance expectations.

5. Bonus tip: Learn from the experts

If you really want to take your trading to the next level, the best way to get started is to learn from those who have been where you are now. The good news is that you can do this with our free webinar series, Trading Spotlight!

Three times a week with three pro traders, Trading Spotlight takes a deep dive into the world’s most popular trading topics. Find out more and reserve your spot by clicking the banner below.

How to choose an automated FX trading program

While our auto trading platforms of choice are MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5, you might want to consider your options on the market. In order to do this, it’s important to define your needs and do your research by reading automatic trading reviews.

Define your needs

Since automated trading systems vary in terms of speed, performance, programmability and complexity, what is good for one trader might not be good for another. Some Forex traders will want a program that generates reports, or imposes stops, trailing stops and other market orders. Other traders, such as those who are less experienced, may want a simpler program with a set-and-forget feature.

With this in mind, the first step is defining your needs for the software.

At their most basic, any automated trading program should be able to perform the following tasks:

  • Generate reports or trading alerts automatically
  • Place stop orders
  • Manage standalone trailing stops
  • Place conditional orders directly on the Forex market
  • Trading in tick, or high speed scalping (High Frequency Trading)

Assuming the programs you are considering can perform all of the above, when it comes to choosing between different currency trading programs, here are some more elements to consider:

  • Real-time market monitoring
  • Remote access capability (this is vital if you travel often, or intend to be away from your PC for a long time)
  • Virtual private server hosting, or VPS, which provides fast internet access, isolates the Forex automated software for security purposes, and also offers technical support
  • Ongoing fees and commissions – is there a one-off charge to purchase the software, or will you need to pay extra fees and trading commissions?
  • Return guarantees, terms and conditions

Read automatic trading reviews

Some auto trading firms claim to have a very high percentage of winning trades. However, as the saying goes, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

In fact, the main criticism made of automated trading software is of unscrupulous people selling losing algorithms. There are many trading scams on the internet, and it can be difficult for new traders to detect them, especially if you’ve never tried automatic trading.

Such advertising claims must be verified, and this is where reviews for Forex automation software can be useful.

A quick Google search will bring up a range of websites that list brokers who offer auto trading support, as well as reviews of specific automated trading programs.

On top of this, the best software publishers will provide authenticated trading history results in order to show the effectiveness of the programs they are offering. The golden rule is to understand that past performance is not a warranty of positive future results.

Consider the costs of the Forex trading program

While cost shouldn’t be your top concern, price competition does currently favour the consumer, so perhaps it’s a good idea to shop around for the best deal. Just be careful not to sacrifice quality for price. Prices for trading packages can range anywhere from hundreds of dollars to thousands.

Try auto trading before you buy

When you’re considering different automated trading software, you’ll find that some firms provide video content of software programs functioning in the market, purchasing, and selling currency pairs. If there are screenshots of account action with trade prices for buy and sell transactions, time of profit posting, and execution – then you should consider checking them out before committing to anything.

While testing new Forex automatic trading software, run the tutorial, or any other training function in order to see if it is appropriate and answers all of your questions. Additionally, you may have to call the support desk for answers to complex questions about programming, like the buy-sell criteria, and exploiting the system in general.

If a help link is offered to you, check how easy it is to navigate, and whether it’s of any use to you. Some of your questions might not be answered through the information provided in the help section and knowledge base. A high level of service and technical support is crucial for Forex traders at any level of experience, but is especially significant for novices and newbies.

Often the majority of the leading firms will also offer a free, non-obligatory test of their automated Forex trading robots, so that the potential customer can see if the program is a good fit. In such a situation, test to see if the program can be installed easily, and ensure that you do not have any difficulties with understanding and using it.

Moreover, ensure that the software is programmable and flexible, so that you can change any pre-installed default settings.

How to test automated trading software

If you have found some auto Forex software that looks promising, the next step is to test it. Backtesting against historical data will help you confirm that the software behaves the way you want, before you put any money at risk.

You can also test the Forex automaton on a demo account over a significant period, or on a significant number of open automatic trades, in order to verify its functioning and its profitability.

A third option for testing is performing a manual test of your strategy on past course data.

In fact, you can test automated trading strategies using Expert Advisors in MetaTrader Supreme Edition, a plugin that includes:

  • The trading simulator
  • The Mini Terminal
  • The Admiral Keltner indicator

These free trading tools allow you to try a systematic trading tools that can eventually become an algorithmic trading strategy.

What is the best platform for automatic trading?

While it’s easy to get caught up in the possibilities of algorithmic trading, it’s also important to consider the trading platform you will use.

The best platform for automatic trading must meet three criteria:

  1. It must be intuitive: You must be comfortable using it
  2. It must be functional: It must not restrict you in your trading strategies
  3. It must be customisable and professional: You must be able to use it for both automatic and manual trading

Forex trading software is numerous but only a few are recognised as reliable and robust. This is one of the many reasons why MetaTrader 4 and 5 are the world’s most popular trading platforms.

And this is why these are the automated trading platform we offer at Admiral Markets:

  • MetaTrader 4
  • MetaTrader 5
  • MetaTrader Edition Supreme
  • MetaTrader WebTrader

Download MetaTrader 5 below.

Which broker should you choose for automatic trading?

Just as choosing the right trading platform is important, so too is choosing the best Forex broker. You could have the ultimate automatic Forex software in your arsenal, but if you aren’t trading with a reputable, ethical broker, you might struggle to access your profits.

With this in mind, it’s important to consider these points when choosing a Forex broker:

  1. Always trade with a regulated broker
  2. Choose a broker that authorises the use of Expert Advisors
  3. Choose brokers with fast order execution
  4. Prioritise Brokers with tight spreads to limit transaction costs and maximise your profits
  5. Choose a broker with a wide range of markets and financial instruments

While the previous five points are essential, this list is not exhaustive! Depending on your strategy, you may have additional requirements, for example: If your algorithm uses a hedging strategy, you must make sure to choose a broker that allows hedging.

For the vast majority of automatic trading strategies, Admiral Markets offers many advantages:

  1. Regulated by some of the world’s leading financial regulators – the FCA, EFSA, CySEC and ASIC
  2. Tight spreads (meaning lower trading costs) on Forex CFDs and other instruments
  3. No opening or closing fees for Forex CFDs – only the spread is paid
  4. Mini lots available CFD, meaning you can trade in low volumes as you test your strategies – with micro lots from 0.01 lots
  5. No minimum stop losses or take profits
  6. Orders executed at the best prices in the market in just a few milliseconds
  7. Speed, comfort and simplicity: enter or exit trades with just one click
  8. Free real-time FX and CFD trading charts in MetaTrader 4 and 5
  9. Access leverage of up to 1:30 for Retail clients, and 1:500 for Professional clients
  10. Minimum deposits from € 200 – start small and increase your investment as you learn the markets

Final thoughts

While automatic trading software is not as simple as most Forex or CFD providers want you to believe, that doesn’t mean it’s impossible!

Like any tool, automated Forex programs are just one that you need to learn. Once you do, they can run your trades for you, while you spend time on the things that are more important to you.

It does not matter what level of expertise you have in Forex trading. Whether you are a beginner, an experienced trader, or a professional, Forex trading automated software can help you.

It is vital to understand that no Forex automated software can guarantee a 100% rate of winning trades. It’s also important to remember that past performance does not guarantee success in the future. However, it is a tool that could give you an edge in the market, when used appropriately.

Ready to dive deeper? Then why not learn to trade in a safe, risk-free environment with a FREE demo account? It is an easy way to learn the basics of Forex trading and polish your skills as a trader before you progress to the next level. Click the banner below to open your free demo trading account!

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About Admiral Markets

Admiral Markets is a multi-award winning, globally regulated Forex and CFD broker, offering trading on over 8,000 financial instruments via the world’s most popular trading platforms: MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5. Start trading today!

This material does not contain and should not be construed as containing investment advice, investment recommendations, an offer of or solicitation for any transactions in financial instruments. Please note that such trading analysis is not a reliable indicator for any current or future performance, as circumstances may change over time. Before making any investment decisions, you should seek advice from independent financial advisors to ensure you understand the risks.

Software

Day trading software is the general name for any software that helps you analyse, decide on, and make a trade. It may grant you access to all the technical analysis and indicator tools and resources you need. The best software may also identify trades and even automate or execute them in line with your strategy. Whether you’re after trading software for beginners, or as an advanced trader, with more options than ever before, doing your research has never been so important.

Firstly, you’ll find out precisely how these software packages work. This page will then highlight what to look for from your broker’s software offering, whilst breaking down forex software, stocks software, and others in detail. It will also touch upon software demo accounts, equipment and the regional differences to be aware of.

Best Trading Software 2020

How Trading Software Works

Online day trading software can be broken down into four categories:

  • Data – Before you start trading for the day you need to know the prices of the stocks, futures and/or currencies you want to trade. For stocks and futures, those prices will usually come from the exchange where they are traded. Forex, however, doesn’t have a central exchange.
  • Charting – Smart traders will usually chart prices in charting software. Many vendors will also offer data feeds. These charting packages usually offer basic technical analysis indicators. Opt for a more advanced package and you can benefit from more indicators and the ability to backtest your strategies.
  • Trade execution – With your data to hand and after analysing it on a chart, at some point you’ll want to enter a trade. For that, you’ll need some sort of trade execution software, an electronic trading platform. A lot of software today will also allow you to develop your own trading strategies with an application programming interface (API). They may also offer you automated trading capabilities specifically for day trading.
  • Broker vs independent vendor – A lot of brokers will offer software directly linked to their in-house systems, but you can also use third-party applications through independent software vendors with brokers that support such integration. The benefit of third-party solutions is that they often have more advanced features and enable you to trade with several different brokers with one single interface.

Tools

Mac or Windows?

When choosing your software you need something that works seamlessly with your desktop or laptop. Any crashes or technical issues could cost you serious profit. Fortunately, the day trader is no longer constrained to Windows computers, recent years have seen a surge in the popularity of day trading software for Mac.

MetaTrader4, for example, is the worlds most popular trading platform. It’s user-friendly, so combined with an easy to navigate Mac, it’s ideal for both beginners and veterans. But whether you’re looking for the best trading software for Mac or Windows, check reviews to ensure the technical tools, data feeds, portfolio trackers, backtesting capabilities and any other features you require won’t run into compatibility hurdles. In addition, make sure the initial trading software download is free. Reputable brokers shouldn’t charge you for the installation privilege.

Mobile Day Trading Software

You can also get extremely useful mobile trading software, normally in the form of an app on iOS and Android. These aren’t designed to replace desktop applications as they lack in the capabilities area. They are best used to supplement your normal trading software.

Make sure when choosing your software that the mobile app comes free. A good app will provide succinct market updates, trends and the usual stock price tickers. If the app overloads you with information that pushes you towards impulsive decisions, stay clear.

What To Look For

Brokers will often offer standard software, but if you want additional features that may be essential for your strategies then you may have to pay significantly more. So conduct a thorough software comparison before you start trading with your hard earned capital.

Cost & Need

  • Does it meet your needs? – There is no one size fits all. Different trading software will suit different people. Are you following a simple stocks strategy such as moving average tracking? Alternatively, do you want to employ a more complicated multi-conditional strategy? Will you need a direct forex feed? To make sure it caters for your needs get a free software download trial and practice day trading on it first.
  • Cost – How much does day trading software cost? It’s all too easy to opt for the cheapest trading software. Whilst this may save you money in the short term, you may be sacrificing essential features your strategy requires. Adding these features later may cost you even more than if you’d invested in a comprehensive software to start with. Also, check to see if the software is available as part of the standard brokerage account, or does it come at an additional cost?

Technology

  • Execution speed – Time is money and nowhere is that truer than in the day trading world. Ensure your software will allow you to enter and exit trades swiftly. Check reviews for any trade execution red flags. A few seconds could be the difference finishing being in the red or black at the end of the day.
  • Accessibility – Is it a web based software offering? If so, you’ll need just an internet connection to get online, plus you’ll have zero installation, update and maintenance costs. Web based trading software is the best option for beginners. However, if you employ extremely complex algorithms, you may need a computer based installable software. Bear in mind this will be a far more expensive route to go down.
  • Features – Day traders rely on short term price movements to turn a profit. What does your strategy need to monitor these price fluctuations? Will you need charts, particular data feeds, news sources, specific market access? If so, check whether these will be included as standard.
  • Analytics – Does your strategy depend on technical indicators and pattern recognition? Will the software recognise arbitrage opportunities? A comprehensive analysis software will provide you with all the analytical features you need in one user-friendly bundle.

Forex Trading Software

Which is the best forex trading software available on today’s market? With hundreds to choose from, finding the right software for your needs isn’t a straightforward decision. The first question to ask would be ‘what information, resources and tools do you need to enhance your forex strategy?’

Below are some of the most popular currency trading software available:

  • Trading platforms – These enable you to manually manage and execute forex trades.
  • Trading signal generators – These will provide you with recommended levels for which to enter and exit positions.
  • Technical analysis software – These will offer you charts of historical exchanges rates, plus a wide range of technical indicators.
  • Automated forex trading software – Once you’ve pre-programmed your rules and strategy, these programmes will automatically execute trades on your behalf.

Stocks Trading Software

With today’s volatile market trends, picking the right stock trading software is essential. It is often said that there are very few stocks worth trading each day. That means identifying them before they make their big move will be what separates the profitable traders and the rest. Before you purchase, always check the trading software reviews first.

In addition, look for the following capabilities from your software:

  • Market scanning – The programme should scan the market for potential opportunities and swiftly draw your attention to stocks of interest.
  • Charting software – These will help you decipher market conditions, so look for software that keeps their charts user friendly, or even offers customisability options.
  • Portfolio tracking – This will help you keep a close track of all previous trades, helping you to identify mistakes and hone your strategy.
  • Backtesting The software should enable you to backtest your trading systems against historical data, giving you an idea of whether and how successful your strategy will be, before you risk real capital.

Other Instruments & Markets

On top of the software for the instruments above, you can also get your hands on the following:

  • Commodity trading software – There’s a rich supply of international trading software for the commodities markets. Plus, you can get your hands on some of the best free online trading and charting software around.
  • Bitcoin day trading software – As the market is still growing, there are new options popping up every month. You’ll also find some of the best trading simulator software, that’s probably free.
  • Emini trading software – Emini options continue to grow, so you can choose between generic systems, or specialist Emini software. You’ll also find lots of good scalping software options, with plenty of reviews on software forums.
  • Penny stocks software – There is healthy competition, so if you’re looking at where to buy the best trading software for penny stocks, a quick Google will answer all your prayers in abundance. You can also find easy to use buy and sell signal software for penny stocks.
  • Software for NSE – You can find free trading software for Indian markets, or you can choose from the ever growing options.
  • Software for cryptocurrency – You can choose between robot, prediction software, or you can find plenty of manual options. You can also now get your hands on useful virtual money management software to keep your online wallet heavy.

Journal Software

Day trading journal software allows you to keep online log books. Why would you want that? Because they keep a detailed account of all your previous trades. They record the instrument, date, price, entry, and exit points. This allows you to not only fill in your tax returns with ease, but also to analyse your recent trade performance. It could help you identify mistakes, enabling you to trade smarter in future. This makes it some of the most important intraday trading software available.

Make sure when you compare software, you check the reviews first. Even the ones that proclaim to be one of the ‘top 10 day trading software’, can have some serious drawbacks. Also bear in mind, the easiest trading software won’t necessarily be the best. If it’s easy because it falls short of the essentials outlined above, your bottom line may suffer.

Having said that, consider the popular and well regarded options below:

  • MetaTrader – Market leading multi-functional trading platform. Integrated with many leading brokers.
  • TradingView – The leading charting package with a wealth of technical analysis tools and the ability to build and back test strategies. Can also automate trades, and copy trade.
  • Linux software – Considered some of the fastest real time trading software around.
  • JSE software – Considered one of the best futures day trading software available.
  • MCX analysis software – One of Tim Sykes highly recommended trading software systems.
  • TD Ameritrade – Some of the best live and virtual day trading software available, scoring particularly high in US reviews.
  • Etrade software – Nifty trading software, that’s fast, reliable and used by traders of all levels.
  • Consors software – This German software offers some of the best trading simulation software for free.
  • AlgoTrader – This is ideal if you’re looking for customisable, open source software to implement automated strategies.
  • NinjaTrader – allows developers to build their own integrated indicators.
  • ZuluTrade – Automate trades or copy trading signals or traders. Popular in the US.
  • eToro – Leading Social Trading network. Copy profitable traders – or become a ‘leader’ and earn when other traders follow your trades.

Software Strategies

Choosing the right software is a hugely important decision, but part of that decision comes with ensuring that it works harmoniously with your day trading strategies. If you’re trading forex using a simple price action strategy, then you may have everything you need with your broker’s standard program software.

Tools such as TradingView can also help you build and back test strategies, including using your own code if desired.

However, if you have a complex strategy you may need software that has all the indicators and technical tools at a few clicks notice, to ensure you make fast and accurate decisions. Your strategy needs are likely to be greater and you may require optional advanced features that are often expensive.

Demo Accounts

If you want to test a specific software before committing to it, the best way to do it is a “demo account”. A demo account is a form of practice account where you trade for free with “play money” using the real software and its features. It’s a great way to trial softwares, strategies and your own skills and is something we highly recommend. We list all trading demo accounts here.

Regional Impact

Tailored for specific markets

The best trading software for Australia and Canada, may fall short of the mark in Indian and South African markets. This is simply because the software in India can be extremely different to Australian softwares. Spider software, for example, provides technical analysis software specifically for Indian markets. But if you want to trade stocks in the West, you may find that software from far afield won’t give you all the access to data feeds and news resources you need to successfully trade.

There’s also the question of cost. You can get plenty of free charting software for Indian markets, but the same powerful and comprehensive software in the UK, Europe, and the US can often come with a hefty price tag. So, make sure your software comparison takes into account location and price.

Tax Considerations

The same principle applies to day trading tax software. The accounting software needs to be able to accurately calculate how much tax is payable to your country’s specific body, the IRS for example. Apart from wasting your time, any tax errors will fall on your lap, as will any fines.

Final Word On Location

If you’re British, do your homework and find out what the best trading software specifically for the UK is. If you’re Canadian, check you won’t encounter any tax problems if you invest in accounting software from South Africa.

Take Home Points

It’s worth bearing in mind that your choice of broker can restrict the tools available to you. Free day trading software may seem like a no brainer to start with, but if it comes with the sacrifice of technical tools that could enhance trade decisions then it may cost you in the long run. Remember the best day trading software for forex may not cut the mustard when you use it for stocks, so do your research and consider all the factors outlined above. Most importantly, you wouldn’t buy a car without test driving it first, and your day trading software shouldn’t be any different.

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