Any profitable users of TB?

Discussions about the testing and simulation of mechanical trading systems using historical data and other methods. Trading Blox Customers should post Trading Blox specific questions in the Customer Support forum.
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hottip
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Any profitable users of TB?

Post by hottip » Thu Feb 11, 2010 1:41 pm

I've been trading profitably fulltime for 7 yrs now. I've always been a "system trader" but the extent of my backtesting has been crudely through Excel. I've finally decided to venture into a more comprehensive backtesting s/w package such as TradingBlox. My question is -- Are there any profitable users of this s/w package out there? I'm not asking for any secrets, but knowing that there are profitable traders who have relied on this s/w to develop their strategies and would highly recommend it to others would make me feel more comfortable making the investment.

I'm currently using the trial version, and I've been impressed with it so far.

Thanks for any input.

Rick

sluggo
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Post by sluggo » Thu Feb 11, 2010 1:51 pm

I assume you mean, any other profitable users of TBlox, besides AFJ Garner. With whom you are already acquainted.

Forum Roundtable member "William" has a thought-provoking quotation in his signature which may apply. (LINK)

hottip
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Post by hottip » Thu Feb 11, 2010 2:02 pm

Thanks Sluggo. Yes, I've already assumed that Mr. Garner is very successful. I was hoping that there would be at least a handful more who can claim this software has helped make them money (as opposed to being a tool for purely intellectual exercises).

My question has much less to do with self-confidence as it does with confidence in a product that will cost me over three grand. I guess my question should be more specific -- Do people find that the strategies that they develop and test with this s/w transition well to real trading?

Thanks again,
Rick

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Post by LeapFrog » Thu Feb 11, 2010 2:35 pm

hottip wrote:Do people find that the strategies that they develop and test with this s/w transition well to real trading?
Ah! Maybe this is an easier question to answer - or maybe not. I would answer: yes. Does that help?

If you're also asking if TB realistically represents the real world, I would say it does as best as any measurer of past performance can "show the way" into the future.

If you're asking if TB is "worth" the money - that has to be a personal decision doesn't it? I can tell you I "hummed" and "harred" about buying it for a long time and regretted the dithering. It is all relative to your risk equity too isn't it. If your account is $10K then spending a third of it on s/w may be tough to justify. But if you make and lose multiple times the s/w price in a single trade, then, not so hard to justify.

If you're asking that by buying TB you are sure to then become a profitable trader if only you do the right thing, work hard, and follow your systems, then, I would say the answer is: no.

If I haven't stumbled upon the question you're really asking, try again.
Last edited by LeapFrog on Thu Feb 11, 2010 3:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Chris67
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Post by Chris67 » Thu Feb 11, 2010 3:02 pm

Hottip
I , apparently , was the first person to take my own money live using systems I designed on this software (back then it was called Veritrader) - that was way back in the heady days of early 2004 if I remember correctly - I can honestly say its the best investment Ive ever made in my entire life - I had traded 14 year s prior to that in a sort of discretionary gut feel (but understanding the principles of trend following) way and was never as profitable as I have been since !
Last year was my first losing year and this one , 6 weeks in, is heading in exactly the same direction , but I would suggest you beg , borrow and steal to buy this software
No guarantees of course - but then there never is
Chris
p.s. I have no role in TB and do not personally benefit from promoting TB - I just find it a great resource (although sluggo is annoying heheh - he's alright too really)
C

sluggo
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Post by sluggo » Thu Feb 11, 2010 10:07 pm

LeapFrog wrote:If you're asking if TB is "worth" the money - that has to be a personal decision doesn't it? ... It is all relative to your risk equity too isn't it. If your account is $10K then spending a third of it on s/w may be tough to justify. But if you make and lose multiple times the s/w price in a single trade, then, not so hard to justify.
One competitor to TBlox sells their product for (1/15)th the price. Yes really. If the price of the software is an important consideration, perhaps you may want to try out the lower cost item first. If it meets your needs, congratulations, you got what you needed for (1/15)th of the money. If it doesn't meet your needs, you can always buy TBlox later and your total cost is only (16/15)ths what it would have been -- which you may deem to be A Really Good Proposition Bet.

If you are unable to find the Blox competitor who sells their software so inexpensively, search this Roundtable site for discussion threads started by user "sunyata" in June 2009.

hottip
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Post by hottip » Fri Feb 12, 2010 12:50 am

sluggo wrote:One competitor to TBlox sells their product for (1/15)th the price. Yes really. If the price of the software is an important consideration, perhaps you may want to try out the lower cost item first. If it meets your needs, congratulations, you got what you needed for (1/15)th of the money. If it doesn't meet your needs, you can always buy TBlox later and your total cost is only (16/15)ths what it would have been -- which you may deem to be A Really Good Proposition Bet.

If you are unable to find the Blox competitor who sells their software so inexpensively, search this Roundtable site for discussion threads started by user "sunyata" in June 2009.
Sluggo, I think you're probably talking about Amibroker, which I've researched, along with TradersStudio & Wealth-Lab Pro. I've noticed that Amibroker is very cheap and has great reviews, but that the drawback is the programming learning curve, which I'm not sure is worth the money saved, considering I'm not a computer programmer to begin with. :)

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Post by DeanoT » Fri Feb 12, 2010 4:21 am

Eight years ago I knew a thing or two about the markets, but had no ability to translate that knowledge into profit. The two key factors in my transformation from knowledgeable to profitable trader were:

1) Market Wizards, and

2) Trading Blox

Market Wizards, and in particular the interviews with Seykota and Dennis confirmed for me my hunch that mechanical, technical and mathematical systems were not only profitable, but optimal. It was a key factor in me believing that I could develop a winning trading strategy. But giving me the belief that I could was only half the battle.

Next I needed a tool to test my trading theories, build positive expectancy trading systems, and develop money management rules, before I could have the confidence to trade the markets profitably. TradingBlox was the only product I found that met all my needs.

As others have said, the decision to buy TradingBlox is most definitely a personal one, but I have yet to hear of one person who has regretted it. I certainly don't.
Last edited by DeanoT on Fri Feb 12, 2010 6:25 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by danZman » Fri Feb 12, 2010 5:46 am

When I bought my first car, I was looking for something that could get me around without spending money I didn't have. It was functional, not the Ferrari or Aston.

Mechanical trading takes a great deal of research, which means time. If you want something that works right NOW without breaking the bank, a platform like Tradestation will get you up to speed very quickly. TB is more like a refined luxury car that is perhaps for the more experienced. You have to crawl before you can walk.

TB will let you test everything you can think of...but at a high learning curve.

TS and others...does the job, but is lacking when you are ready to drill down to every aspect of trading (especially multi-system and multi-instrument trading).

I will answer your question in a different way. Am I profitable because of Trading Blox? No. I'm profitable because I put a large amount of time and effort into mechanical system trading. TB was my hammer. I am the carpenter.

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Post by AFJ Garner » Fri Feb 12, 2010 6:31 am

I will first make an important assumption: that you have enough money to make trading/investment worthwhile. Search this site for important tips on how much money you need to trade a diversified basket of futures. Sluggo and others have come up with important and useful suggestions on how you can start up with relatively small amounts of capital using "small" and or/ low volatility contracts. Clearly, if you intend to trade stocks or ETFs/ETCs starting capital is not a problem but it does have a bearing on how much you can/are willing to pay for a back testing engine.

The next assumption is that you are willing to invest a great deal of time learning how to programme. In my (probably prejudiced view) no trader should be without programming skills. It is not rocket science: it does take intelligence and hard work. I began from scratch with no programming background. I view it as some of the most interesting and rewarding work I have ever undertaken.

In my opinion you need to buy software which can back test portfolios. As I understand it this is not possible with Trade Station.

Trading Blox has been far and away my most important learning tool in this business. I have been able to do everything I have wanted to do and more. I have picked up invaluable ideas and code from other users on this forum. If you are serious about this business, TB (or its equivalent) is a must. There are some packages out there which cost $20/- and over and I suspect that TB does pretty well everything that such packages do.

Look at Mechanica if you want an alternative. I do own Mechanica but.................

The other enormous advantage of TB is the built in systems. And the Blox on offer for free in the market place. The kick start which these will give you is extremely valuable.

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Post by hottip » Fri Feb 12, 2010 12:47 pm

Thanks for all the responses. I forgot to mention that I've also looked into VectorVest. They have some interesting proprietary indicators and many good reviews as well. The problem is that I think their backtester is only for equities and also is not as robust as TB. Another plus for TB is the community of users on this forum as well as the marketplace (which unfortunately I have no visibility to during the trial period).

I'm pretty well capitalized, and I'm looking to diversify my strategies a bit. I've mostly been daytrading the last 7yrs, so I'm most comfortable with a hold of 24hrs or less. Am I right to assume that most of the users here are creating swing systems? Are there users here who have successfully used TB to create intraday systems?

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Post by sluggo » Fri Feb 12, 2010 2:05 pm

I prefer longer holdtimes myself; here for example are some of the existing positions in a system I'm trading with real money right now (as part of a suite). EOD data seems to suit me better, for some reason.
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Post by LeviF » Fri Feb 12, 2010 2:13 pm

I have created hundreds (thousands?) of systems with Blox. Hourly and daily. Volatility based, swing based, support/resistance, indicator based, etc. After studying those systems, I always come back to long term trend following.

I could calculate my trade signals with a pencil and notepad if i had to (maybe a spreadsheet is a bit more realistic). But I had to spend thousands of hours with Blox to see how things really work and get the confidence needed to trust my systems.

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Post by Jez Liberty » Fri Feb 12, 2010 5:08 pm

hottip wrote:Sluggo, I think you're probably talking about Amibroker, which I've researched, along with TradersStudio & Wealth-Lab Pro. I've noticed that Amibroker is very cheap and has great reviews, but that the drawback is the programming learning curve, which I'm not sure is worth the money saved, considering I'm not a computer programmer to begin with. :)
If I can add my 2 cents (as I was in a position similar to yours). I now own TradersStudio, AmiBroker and Trading Blox - I bought them in this order over the last year. I just bought Trading Blox last Wednesday! hurray! :lol: :lol:

After some initial analysis, I had decided on TradersStudio, mostly on a cost basis (I was seeing TradersStudio as Trading Blox Builder little brother, not as nice and with a few features lacking that I might be able to fix by coding them in the systems).
After being let down by its speed and not really enjoying the user experience, I evaluated AmiBroker and bought it. For what I was testing at the time, it turned out to be 25x faster than TradersStudio. However I did find the platform less geared towards portfolio backtesting, multi-systems, Futures, etc. The programming learning curve appeared a bit steeper also.

Finally I went back to Trading Blox (I did evaluate it a while back) as I realised that it was just the right tool for the job and just better than the other platforms. I am very glad with it now (over my 2-3 weeks of evaluating, I have definitely found that it will help me speed up the development process compared to the other platforms). Learning curve is not that steep, its many options make it very sophisticated and its very fast too..

As anthony Garner says in his book, when it comes to Backtesting software, "dont be a cheapskate". I now regret having tried to be one and wasted a bit of time on other softwares..

And this forum rocks compared to anywhere else I have found! :wink:


PS: you can check my blog where I cover some of these software comparison or pm me if you want to ask more specific questions.

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Post by cully » Sat Mar 13, 2010 11:14 pm

Very timely discussion as I have also been researching backtesting engines. I've traded only stocks in the past and still enjoy the top down analysis it takes to filter out trending sectors, industries and ultimately stocks. In this process I largely depend on relative strength and some form or a derivative of moving averages. I'm considering trying my hand at futures, but is TB the right tool for testing mechanical stock trading systems?

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Post by hasakura » Sun Mar 14, 2010 3:03 am

started on 12/18/10, and so far so good! (fingers crossed)

Trading blox is great! I continue to be amazed at the new charting improvement and new developments. Also the customer service is wonderful!
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Post by NGPilot » Tue Apr 06, 2010 4:21 pm

How do you get the 3D graph?

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Post by nonpareil » Wed Apr 07, 2010 8:33 am

It's in the latest upgrades, I think it was version 3.4 perhaps?

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Post by NGPilot » Wed Apr 07, 2010 4:12 pm

I upgraded to TB Builder Edition and now have the 3D graphics.

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