Today,Automated Trading Systems for Financial Markets and Recommendations for Their Usage Articles using information and trading platforms has become a de facto requirement for successful trading in the financial markets. Their advantages as compared to conventional trading schemes include, for example, an unprecedented speed of processing and delivery of information to end users, the level of integration with data providers, and a wide array of built-in technical analysis instruments. At the same time, an investor opening an account with a brokerage firm simply cannot simultaneously manage the real-time analysis and trade in more than 4-6 financial instruments in several markets 24 hours 7 days a week. This brings about the need to employ automatic trading systems in the form of runtime environment with client and server parts and the programs to control these systems (scripts).
2. Comparative Analysis of the Problem Area
Various software components embrace the entire target sector of the market—from analytics and forecasting to complex trade and administration. The components of a trading platform provide its clients—brokers, dealers, traders, financial analysts and advisors—just the service they need at the very moment they need it, from immediate round-the-clock access to information of concern by means of mobile devices, to multi-move trading operations in the major client terminal.
2.1. MetaTrader4-based SolutionsOne of the world’s most widely used trade platform products is apparently MetaTrader4, developed by MetaQuotes Software CorporatVon for Forex market trading. The platform includes an integrated development environment (IDE) MetaEdVtor, intended for writing scripts in a programming language called MetaQuotes Language, or MQL4 for short. The language’s syntax is based on the classic C language syntax, and the flow logic has not been significantly changed since the previous version of the platform that used MQL II as the programming language. The new automated trade framework is, undoubtedly, an evolution of the previous one. Both languages feature good functionality, with an optimum set of built-in trading and utility functions which is quite sufficient to implement the basic operations, and a facility to define custom functions to help implement non-standard ideas. From the programming point of view, MQL4 is much more convenient that its predecessor; this language is more oriented at professional programmers, while MQL II, in my opinion, will rather suit financial experts wishing to build trading programs (or trading advisors, in the MetaQuotes terminology) of their own.
2.2. Omega Research-based SolutionsIn the New World, the vast majority of companies use the Omega Research platform developed by TradeStation Securities, Inc. This platform has long ago proven its worth at the worldwide market, and to date experts consider it to be the best system for technical analysis. The provided IDE called Omega Research PowerEditor is intended to create control programs in EasyLanguage (EL). The language’s major advantage that strikes the eye is the easiness (hence is the name) of placing opening and closing orders. The corresponding program instructions can be written such as if we were formulating an order to our broker in the plain human language. In MQL4, for example, placing an order to open a position would involve specifying about a dozen of various parameters. In EasyLanguage, the same can be expressed in a short statement using a few words. Working with technical indicators is about that simple, too. But don’t fall under an illusion: when creating these simple commands, language developers sacrificed the functionality and limited the possible ways of using a particular function, therefore effectively depriving the IDE users of the opportunity to accurately implement their own algorithms. TradeStation decided not to create extensive libraries of built-in trading and utility functions but to limit to only an essential set. As the platform advanced, the number of functions written by both in-house and third-party developers grew, and TradeStation simply included them as user-defined functions into the repository of its scripts. As a result, the functionality offered to users is not in the least scarcer than that of MetaQuotes product. PowerEditor provides a built-in dictionary that lets user search and get help on the available functions. Another handy tool worth mentioning is the strategy builder. Using the strategy builder, the user can easily create a basic algorithm for his or her trading program, and then modify and adjust it as necessary. EasyLanguage is an old-timer and pioneer in the field of creating automated trading systems for the stock market. It was the basis for the development of MQL II. EasyLanguage will be a good choice for programmers, but still a better one for financial experts more oriented at analyzing the market than trading.
2.3. ProTrader-based SolutionsProfessional financial experts can choose the ProTrader2 or ProTraderFX platform as their working tool, depending on the type of the financial market—stock or Forex, respectively. The two platforms are https://cammatch.net developed and supported by PFSoft LLC. While featuring the specially developed ProTrader Language (PTL), the provided IDE named PTL Builder offers also the opportunity to create scripts in MQLII, MQL4 and EasyLanguage. For this, the text of the program is translated to a language-independent code. Therefore, at runtime it does not matter in which language the script was written. This technology does not only enable creating new scripts, but makes it possible to use freely the entire accumulated collection of scripts that many experienced traders possess. The main idea put into the new scripting language was to ensure maximum reliability and predictability of the scripts being run. The PTL language is built so as to minimize the possibility of making a mistake in the text of a user’s script—the potentially dangerous points will be detected even before the script is tested or launched. Regardless of the programming language chosen, the platform works with verified managed code while running the script. This Microsoft-developed technology enables proper handling of errors that cannot be detected before the script is run. This means the program will not fail and will not perform any unwanted operations that might be due to critical errors or damage caused by another program, for which the account holder would eventually have to pay. The PTL Builder IDE will serve well both financial experts and programmers thanks to its support of different programming languages and provided tools such as tester and debugger.