Tradestation vs NinjaTrader: Reviews- Which one is better?

Deciding whether NinjaTrader or Tradestation is better is similar to deciding which kid is your favorite.  You just can’t do that!  These two programs are the only trading platforms that all futures traders use.  These two platforms are the only ones I have been using for my roughly 10 year day trading career.  I share my day trading tips and more about my strategy on my new Day Trading website at http://thedaytradingacademy.com

If you trade stocks or options then you have different possibilities including the programs that the big brokerages offer.  Big brokerages are much too expensive in comparison to the brokers that are tailor made for the futures market.  This is the reason why most futures day traders and professional day traders use one of these two platforms.

Choosing between the two has gotten more difficult over the years due to the fact that Ninja Trader is new to the charting realm of trading.   NinjaTrader use to be known as just an execution platform but recently taken a significant dive into charting.

tradestation, futures charts, tradestation charting

Picture of a Tradestation Chart

This bodes well for many traders since Tradestation used to be the only platform that was available.  Competition is always better!  We can look at a few areas of charting to really compare the two platforms:

  • Cost
  • Ease of Use – Charting
  • Ease of Use – Execution
  • Features
  • Customer Service
  • Initial Setup & Installation


Cost of NinjaTrader & Tradestation Platforms:

Tradestation NinjaTrader, Tradestation logo, Ninja Trader, NinjaTraderTradestation is significantly more expensive since you can use Ninja Trader for free when you are practicing or simulating.

Tradestation costs $125 a month unless you make 10 round trip trades per month out of a live account (1 round trip=you take on a position & then sell it).

If you are able to make 10 live round trip trades per  month then you only pay a $25 monthly fee for the data feed.  Ninja Trader is completely free to use on simulation.  In order to trade a live account with Ninja Trader you have to buy a license.  Price details are listed below:

Cost of Tradestation

  • $25 a month with 10 live round trip trades
  • $125 a month using simulation or not having 10 live round trip trades

Cost of Ninja Trader: Purchase

  • $995 for a 1 broker Lifetime License (option most will choose)
  • $1495 for Multi Broker Lifetime License

Cost of Ninja Trader: Lease

  • $60 a month ($180 total – 3 month lease)
  • $55 a month ($330 total – 6 month lease)
  • $50 a month ($600 total – 1 year lease)

Advantage: Ninja Trader (who can argue with free!)


Ease of Use – Charting:

Tradestation use to win this battle big time before the recent release of Ninja Trader 7.  With the new release both platforms are on par with each other aside from some small nuances.  Most old school day traders like myself use Tradestation.

Most new traders use Ninja Trader since it costs nothing to use until you go live.  I still prefer to use Tradestation for charting since those small nuances to me make a difference in comparison to Ninja Trader.

Advantage: Either


Ease of Use – Execution:

Ninja matrix, NinjaTrader Matrix

NinjaTrader Matrix

There are some major differences in execution between Ninja Trader and Tradestation.  To put it plainly, Ninja Trader is light years ahead of Tradestation.  Ninja Trader has more options and some cool features that the age old Tradestation platform doesn’t have.

The data feeds that both platforms use are also very different.  I have personally noticed that Trade Station is more sensitive to spikes in volume while Ninja Trader is more sensitive to internet shortages.  When you travel around the world like I do these small differences can cost thousands of dollars.

When spikes in volume occur Tradestation tends to not be able to catch up with the data where Ninja Trader keeps right up.  When the internet cuts out even for even a millisecond Tradestation for the most part stays connected while Ninja Trader loses its connection almost immediately.

Ninja Trader’s feed options are much better than Tradestation’s.  Tradestation still uses a very old data connection that was invented ages ago, updates to the feed may or may not have happened recently.  Ninja Trader on the other hand can connect via various data feed providers that are up to date.

Advantage: Ninja Trader


Tradestation & Ninjatrader Features:

Chart trader, chart trader ninjatrader, ninja trader chart trader

Chart Trader on NinjaTrader

When we look at the features of both platforms Ninja Trader has a clear edge.  When learning how to day trade and practicing it’s important to be able to simulate in a live environment.

What Ninja Trader provides is the ability to download historical data and replay it like its live.  You can now practice how to day trade any time of the week, day or night.

This is an invaluable tool for both new day traders and those that want to practice.  Most newbies have other responsibilities and having the freedom of time is priceless.

Another cool feature on Ninja Trader is the chart trader option.  This is where you can visually see all of your stops and targets on your chart rather than just your order matrix.  It brings a whole new visibility to day trading that took charting to a whole new level.

Advantage: Ninja Trader


Customer Service:

Tradestation offers 24 hour customer service except for the weekends while Ninja Trader only offers email support.  While it can be annoying at times Ninja Trader support has a canny way of answering your question right away.  I have been very surprised to receive emails at 2am from a question I asked.  This does not fix the fact that speaking to someone on the phone is much easier than trying to explain it in words.

Advantage: Tradestation


Initial Setup & Installation:

While both platforms are easy to use they are equal when it comes to setup and installation.  They both have their quirks and you will need help setting up both of them.  Most times when you buy a strategy or software the company you buy it from will assist with the install.

I have found that Ninja Trader has more videos and tutorials than Tradestation but I haven’t needed much technical support for Tradestation.  You can’t take my word on that.  I have found that both technical supports have been helpful.

Advantage: Either


Recommendation: Ninja Trader

One of the biggest reasons most new traders use Ninja Trader is for the price.  If you are already spending thousands of dollars to start day trading the last thing you need are more expenses.  The extra chart trader features and especially the ability to simulate in a live market environment is invaluable.


  1. Tradestation is definitely better, there really are no comparision in my Opinion, Ninja is a very difficult platform and hard to set up, difficult and hard to understand menus, it seems you got take a week to configure it and asking around in forums before you even can make it work properly, I really can’t understand all the hype about it, tested it, didn’t like it, with Tradestation there is no such troubble, easy to understand and no configuring needed. just start it up and trade, I don’t have time for poorly programmed trading platforms, I am not a programmer, not worth 1000 bux, Tradestation also have a lot more usable features than Ninja Trader does. Ninja has very poor support in fx since there hardly are no decent brokers offering Ninja with their feed, so you have to use a expensive subscription data feed,, sure it’s nice with a DOM and you can trade futures with it to, but I would rather use X-trader which is unrivaled for that purpose,

    1. Chris I think that Ninja Trader is light years ahead of Tradestation for trade execution and they have gotten on the charting bandwagon a few years ago and every new version that comes out they make it better and better. With the way that you can trade on the actual chart on NinjaTrader and the market replay where you can replay the market at any time of the day like it was live… Tradestation can’t touch NInjaTrader in my opinion.

      I do still use TS for charting but think that NinjaTrader is the better option now with the extra features that TS can’t touch

      1. if you think that “that Ninja Trader is light years ahead of Tradestation” you probably have a poor knowledge of Tradestation.

        1. Only have been using it for 12 years Mirk. Definitely poor knowledge. Tradestation is better for algo’s and rules based programs. For new traders NT is the way to go.

      2. Hi Marcello

        I need Information on Futures trading. I am using NT simulation for Practice,now thinking to go live. I have no knowledge of cost involved with NT futures. who will provide data etc.


      3. I believe that Ninja Trader is just and scam, very sophisticated but scam never the less, I expend 100s if not thousand of hours dealing with the simulator, and I have a strategy for almos every single market condition, even do many times I have a simulated position that goes in the right direction but as soon as i place a real money position the hel braake loose, 1st I notice that every time I star a position i start losing money 10. dolars and when I close my account invariable get 10 less, plus the fee, I also noticed that the market change trend olnly to eat my stop loose money and then it comes back? but if I place another position the “market again” change direction just to consume my money by the stop loose! that is almos imposible unles their software is designed to trick the user, as long as most of the investors are home alone, their sistem made tricked them out in any direction they pleas, Just imagen placing a CL for i contract and the market change trend just to get feed with me? I will recommend anybody who is just starting over to be very critical about the behave of the platform!!!!!!!

  2. Well, I have just gone through the process of signing up with Tradestation, which includes funding the account before you can try their platform. What I have found is that for order execution, Tradestation is a nightmare. Sure there are lots of options but when all you want to do is place an at market order and have a stop and a profit target sent as well, you can’t then just click and send the order, you first have to go through the same click-click-click crap for every order. Either that or write macros for on click ordering and I’m not doing that.

    Their chart trading is nowhere near as good as Ninja, I couldn’t move my orders on the chart with the mouse, none of the cancel or sell buttons would work. If I was in a real trade I wouldn’t have been able to exit the position in a hurry.

    The charts in Tradestation do look better than Ninjas, but I’m sure Ninja will catch up there as well. If the poster above thinks that order execution is hard with Ninja, he should try Apex Trading’s similar platform (if he’s in the States). It is even better and easier than Ninja but some of their traders are arrogant bastards.

    The only advantage with TS is their combined feed and brokerage, but Ninja beats them hands down in every other department.

  3. Does anyone have experience with Think-or-Swim at TD Ameritrade? I believe you are able to trade in same screen with chart display. Also they offer simulation ability.

  4. Here are a few things you also need to consider that Marcello did not cover:

    1. Automated Trading – If you do a lot of automated, algorithmic, or any type of trading that is completely 100% automated, then Tradestation is much better. Ninja does not even come close when it comes to programmed automated trading. Tradestation uses a programming language called “easy language” and it’s not that hard to learn. (Advantage: Tradestation)

    2. Conditional Orders – Tradestation can do any type of conceivable order (aka, “set-and-forget”) that you can possibly imagine. Ninja has conditional order capabilities but nowhere near the capability of Tradestation. (Advantage: Tradestation)

    3. User Interface – I have spoken with the developers at Tradestation and their VP of product before and most of them do not trade. Therefore, they are developing a platform that they never personally use. This is why their interface is the most difficult user interface on planet earth. I have coached hundreds of new traders and I never had one trader be able to learn Tradestation in one day! You can learn how to trade on almost every platform on the market in one day except for Tradestation. Matter of fact, their mission in 2011 was to make Tradestation more “user friendly” because that is the biggest complaint from customers according to their staff. The engineers at Tradestation develop their platform from an “engineer mindset” instead of a “trader mindset”. Ninja is the other way around so they will always have a better user interface. (Advantage: Ninja)

    4. Multiple Asset Classes – You can not trade options on Ninja, only stocks, forex, and futures. On Tradestation, you can trade everything, which is cool cuz you don’t have to deal with multiple brokers. However, if you are trading options, you should be using the Think or Swim platform cuz they have the best options chain on the market as of 2012. (Advantage: Tradestation)

    5. Software Updates – Tradestation is a publicly traded company. They have to deal with a ton of compliance issues, so it takes forever for them to update a glitch in their software. Ninja is a smaller company and more agile and their updates come quicker and do not have to go through a bunch of hurdles. (Advantage: Ninja)

    6. Pending Orders – This is a huge factor that no one ever talks about. Your stop losses and all pending orders are sitting on “client side” (this means it sits on your computer) with Ninja and this is very dangerous! If your computer crashes or malfunctions or your internet is cutoff, then your stop losses will not get filled. All pending orders in Tradestation are sitting on “server side” (this means it’s sitting at Tradestation’s computers) so your stop losses will get filled because they have more redundancy and security protection on their servers then you do on your computer at home. This is the MAIN reason and the ONLY reason that I’m still using Tradestation and not Ninja. Otherwise, I would be using Ninja in a heartbeat. If you do any type of active trading, it’s obvious that Ninja was designed by traders for traders whereas Tradestation was designed by engineers for traders (Advantage: Tradestion)

    7. Cost – I also want to add that if you are worried about the cost of using either tradestation or ninja you are making a huge mistake. This should NOT be a factor when selecting a platform. The platform should meet your trading criteria, strategy, trading plan etc. The cost of the trading platform is just a business expense. My mentor used to pay $300-$400 dollars in commission per side. We are all paying less than $7/trade nowadays. The cost of trading is so little now that if you are complaining about trading software costs, data fees, commissions, etc. then you are wasting your time my friend. My friend was shopping for a Maserati ($100k+) one day and a guy told him you only get 8-9 miles per gallon. This is a very stupid comment. If a person driving a $100k car has to worry about the cost of gas, he shouldn’t be driving it.

    If you are a actively making more than 3 daytrades per day and can sit in front of your computer while trading then use Ninja.

    If you do not make more than 3 trades per day or you can not sit in front of your computer while trading then use Tradestation. This is due to the “client side” and “server side” issue I just talked about above.


    1. Paz.. thanks for the full run down. I have verified the pending orders, your number 6, and they are not placed on the client side. There are is a feature in NinjaTrader called volume trigger and if that is activated its on the client side but if you dont have that feature activated it is not with the client. It may have been that way in the past but I have verified this many times for my traders and it is indeed on their side not on the client side unless you have the volume trigger activated

    2. Hi , I wanted to know if your advice and comparison betwen Trade Station and Ninja is still valid today march 2016. Has Ninja´s technology improved specially for auto trading? Thanks

        1. Above you mentioned that you thought TS was better for algo trading. Do you think that is still the case, or has Ninja come up to the level on that?

          1. Best to backtest on TS… would not trade with the TS brokerage. Their fills are atrocious. NT is better at that than TS. Once you have backtested your strategies then you can operate on TS or other broker.

    3. I am just getting into NinjaTrader and the Pending Order issue seems to have been addressed. All pending orders are sent instantly to the exchange (it does not sit on you computer), except for OCO orders. Therefore, if your internet connection is dropped, your orders will still get executed. As a backup, you can call the broker and have them execute your order (at no charge).

      1. That could have been an internet issue on your end also Ron. If your internet is fast enough it should go from pending to active in mili seconds.

  5. Does anyone have any experience using Tradestation on two computers? This is potentially one advantage which hasn’t been mentioned above (one account can have more than one login I believe). I am researching how to do this at the moment and am trying to understand if you can have two separate PC’s or if you would have to have the software sit on a server which would be accessed by two separate workstations. A bit off topic but if there is any advice out there it would be appreciated.

    1. Anna.. I use Tradestation and you cannot log into more than one computer at a time.. the simple fact that you have to pay for Tradestation monthly would cost you more in the long term. Tradestation if you are not using their overpriced brokerage firm costs $125 a month.. NinjaTrader is a one time monthly fee and thats it so even if you buy two licenses from Ninjatrader it will be cheaper in the long run than Tradestation.

  6. Ninja Trader is completely free to use on simulation AND when you are trading manually.
    You must lease or buy a licence when you need automated strategies in your LIVE trading.
    Good work Marcelo!

  7. Been looking at Ninjatrader lifetime one broker package option but wanted to ask if I don’t use one of listed brokers is it possible for me to open account solely for the ninja charting or do I have to pay more for a monthly streaming feed like kinetick??

    1. Simon…. you can use Ninja Trader for free until you go live. They don’t charge you unless you have a live account. You can sign up for a kinetic feed which I do recommend which is only $50 a month, but you can get a free feed from a broker until you go live.

  8. Thanks for reply Marcello. So once I’m live on Ninja trader I can get a free broker feed? My etrade platform doesn’t seem to come up on broker option though..

    1. Hey Simon.. thats actually incorrect.. you get a free ninjatrader license when you do not trade live. Once you go live you need to buy the license which you can purchase for roughly $180 for 3 months ($60 a month) or a lifetime license for $100.

  9. I’ve used TradeStation for 3 years and find the platform to be stable, reliable and straightforward. Lately, I have felt their customer service has worsened. A good proportion of the people I’ve interacted with are unpleasant, hurried, fast talking people who behave as if the’re the only people that know something. I try to let it go. It seems to be a pattern for the TSS people now. It’s definitely an aggravation. About 1/3 of the time after I get off the phone with them, the thought of switching platforms crosses my mind. Unfortunately, I like the platform and it meets my needs. I’ve spent a lot of time optimizing my trading screens and I do not want to go through that process again.

    1. Patrick the only reason why I have kept Tradestation around is because its more stable when it comes to the internet connection, as I travel around the world I have become accustomed to internet problems and Tradestation for the most part stays connected when NT may cut off for a bit. Now that doesn’t go without saying that when there is a disconnected NT does load a lot faster than TS. I have found TS to be extremely heavy especially on computer memory, if you look at your processes you will find that there are 8 or 9 different processes for TS. Its tough to switch but I am in the process of doing it as well and I would definitely recommend NInjaTrader based on my experience with both platforms

  10. Mostly it sounds like Ninja Trader is the way to go. I had a question about the monthly streaming feed that Simon mentioned. I am about to open an account with deepdiscounttrading – their feed is from TT, which is free, but is it somehow not on a high enough level for trading futures? I also use Thinkorswim for stocks with TD Ameritrade – the question here is if I am better off using Thinkorswim for chart and Ninja for execution or should I really be signing up with Rithmic or Kinetic and spend the extra money?

    1. I think that you should be alright in terms of execution but using TD Ameritrade for futures trading is going to cost you a fortune. Trading eminis with a specified broker is going to be much cheaper in terms of commissions, I had two traders switch from TD Ameritrade to other emini brokers because of how much money it saves. I would recommend using Ninja for charting & execution

  11. Its great to hear from you Marchello, looks like I will sign up with Deepdiscounttrades, which offers commistions of $.50 plus CME fees and then using R|trader Pro. Reason for not using Ninja is that they dont provide server sided OCO. What’s your take on that and R|trader? You are right TD Ameritrade charges an arm and a leg… On another note I’d be curious to learn more about your day trade approach?

  12. Hello to all.
    I’m new.
    Using Ninja and am very satisfied. programming in C # is more difficult than Tradestation but allows you to do everything. I do trading on Stoks, using trading systems in my building. I wanted to start with futures Intraday automatically. Can you recommend a reliable broker.

      1. Interactive brokers is the best all around , as you can trade anything with it, including futures, stocks, options and Forex. Furthermore, NinjaTrder in the free version can use their data feed. All you have to do is execute the orders directly from Interactive brokers which has a very decent DOM. If you want to pay for data feed, go with Kintec. But use IB as a broker. In the long run, you will be happy and SAFE.

        1. Do not agree Edward. Their commissions for futures are a bit higher than what you can get. Now NT brokerage is allowing people to open up accounts for as little as $1000 and their commissions are way lower than IB. Would recommend NT over IB for emini futures.

  13. I’m looking at Ninja or Tradestation for options trading, on checking the Ninja website options do not appear to be available.

  14. I have recently communicated with a commodities broker. The platform they use is NinjaTrader. I have been informed that NinjaTrader Lite is available for 0$ per month with conditions (not too harsh). A couple of things you do not get with NinjaTrader Lite is the ability to make trailing stop orders. I leave it up to you to get the details. It is always better to get this inforrmation straight from the horse. Good luck to all in your trading.

    1. Andrew that’s incorrect, when you get a lifetime license with NinjaTrader you get access to everything. Its a one time payment which is why there is no monthly payment

  15. I used to use Tradestation many moons ago but not for execution..I don’t think.

    I liked the ability to set up custom filters and although I tried the “Easy Language”, it wasn’t so “easy” for me as I just don’t have the mind/patience to learn that stuff..I’ll give you the damn instructions, you make sure all the commas are where they should be..lol

    So, I would say the forums and the ability to find someone to code your idea were a huge perk with TS.Not sure if that’s still the case but I had a few custom indicators built which made for a really great spreadsheet.

  16. Marcello,

    Why don’t you get a “server” with (say) Amazon (AWS) and run NinjaTrader there? It will solve the internet connection problem, and it will also solve the computer-crash problem that Paz

  17. Marcello, agreed; but in that scenario, NT doesn’t crash; you may lose the ability to see the NT screen only. If you trade based on established NT strategies, then nothing is lost.

  18. “These two programs are the only trading platforms that all futures traders use.”

    Really… thanks, I needed a hearty laugh today.

    1. Well there are a slew of others that have cropped up over the years but I would still consider these two to be the best. Tradestation is the oldest of course and NInjaTrader would be the new serious player in the game.

  19. Hi all.
    Can anyone tell me where i might find a charting software that contains Monthly & Weekly charts back to 1896……..on the Dow/Dow 30. I wish to see the broad view back to the beginning. Not the log scale charts on google, but proper software, scrolling charts unpon which i can overlay a study. Many thanks to anyone who may be able to point me in the right direction 🙂

  20. Hi all,
    I have been and am still using Tradestation for 5+years but I am looking for a simulator to help w/my scalping techniques. I tried ThinkOrSwim (ToS) for a year but the software is still very unstable w/a challenging limited thinkScript programming language. The ToS simulator seems to have been abandoned by their dev team years ago since the limitations such as no alerts or file IO is still absent. The only positive I have seen is it may be the best option trading platform out there.
    Another advantage I see w/TS that was not mentioned above is the massive and I mean massive amount of EasyLang. code and support via the forums and on the net that is available. Their forums go back 10+years and will save you 1000s of $$$ just reading these boards. Also something that is overlooked and it is prob because of Marcellos trading style is that TradeStation is and has been free for me. The requirement is that you execute 50 per month or you trade a certain # of shares. They also recently won Barrons 2012 Top Awards in several categories one being “Best Trading Experience and Technology”.
    Having said all that I still am in need of a simulator (Im not referring to the ability to backtest strategies) so I am looking at Ninjatrader. The problem I heard using Ninjatrader for this is the simulator is only available once “you” start collecting the data on your machine, i.e. the simulator only supports replay capabilities from the moment you sign up. I cannot replay yesterday, the past week, etc. Which honestly seems pretty lame but if it is free maybe I will try it.
    Marcello since you have used both concurrently do you have 2 broker accounts?

    1. Rob I would look into a platform called X trader. I am currently looking at the viability of trading out of simultaneous accounts which should be something that you could look into as well.

  21. Hello, I am still learning day trading although I am a pretty old guy with several careers under my belt. I opened an account with TradeStation a couple months ago, and they made me a promotional offer….. in place of the initial commission-free trading for 90 days, they gave me the charting/trading platform free for the life of the account as long as I maintain a $2500 balance. I mentioned this to a friend who has been using TS and paying the monthly fee, and she called her rep and they gave her the same deal.

    I do kind of agree about TS customer service, sometimes I have to wait for humans to get to the phone, and definitely some of the support staff are more knowledgeable and helpful than others. But they have been universally polite.

  22. How much do you guys pay for futures data fees with tradestation now. All other brokers are free, is tradestation giving out live and historical futures data to keep up with time also?

    1. Billy Tradestation normally costs up to $125 a month, $100 for the actual platform and then minimum of $25 a month for data (that can go up very quickly). This is why I recommended Ninjatrader rather than Tradestation because you can use the actual platform for free

  23. Marcello,

    I was thinking of calling them like you and getting the platform cost free unlimited with a balance of 2500 in my account and just paying the 25 dollar a month fee. Can you tell me who your sales rep is so I can talk to the same person?


  24. If the platform fee for TS can come down to zero then that is an incentive but what about the data feed ? If you are trading in the short term then getting the right data feed is make or break. Personally I use NT through a brokerage that feeds into ZenFire and couldn’t be happier with them, so don’t have direct experience with TS. However before I would consider moving I would want to see a thorough comparison in terms of speed of execution and any potential data lag. Focusing on getting the cheapest of anything may often provide you with a false economy.

  25. Hi,

    are there any free intra-day data feeds available to be used in simulation? The offer on NinjaTrader website seems to entitle for only two weeks of free data. Should I just go for Kinetick and pay $50 per month?


  26. Hello, I carefully read the “war” between NT and TS. Everything is beautiful! but no one has talked about multicharts ….. I’d like to know what you think. thanks

    1. I would consider Multicharts to be the better version of Tradestation, but it isn’t as popular Massimo. Word on the street is the guys that invented the easy language found in TS created their own platform and that happens to be Multicharts. I know a few traders that are using it and hear good things about it.

  27. Ninja Trader has a lot of nice features, but it crashes a lot. I have a special Falcon Trading Computer with a lot of muscle, but Ninja bogs down my computer all the time and I get white outs and have to reboot the program A LOT!

  28. Hey Marcello,
    Great site(s)!

    You can’t really say NinjaTrader is the best ’cause it’s free because it’s that’s only free while papertrading. For real trading you either have to pay the $995 for a license (which is about 40 months if you use the $25 TradeStation monthly fee, for comparison) or have to pay for a monthly lease.

    I prefer ThinkorSwim. And then Tradestation.

    I agree with Paul, NinjaTrader is a bit buggy, unstable and shuts down, which in trading is…bad! The Alerts are difficult to use also. And I still haven’t figured out the Zoom feature! 🙁
    Execution speed, which may depend on the broker, is a bit slower also.

    1. Thanks for the note Suleman. Even if you had to pay for both I would still recommend NinjaTrader. The only reason why I still us TS is because its better with unreliable internet connections. TS actually charges a monthly fee outside of the $25 dollar fee but they have recently changed that for some user but long term NT is still cheaper since it is a lifetime license. I would actually use a platform like Multicharts instead of ThinkorSwim. The commissions with ThinkorSwim are astronomical in comparison to emini brokers. ThinkorSwim was designed as an options broker even though now they offer different features.

      At the end of the day I would still recommend NT.

  29. Hey Marcello and all,

    Thanks for the info. I’m considering TS to trade futures. Just browsed the website, still confused about real cost of having an account there. Appreciate any and all feedback/answers:

    1) TS is both a platform provider and a broker? Who’s their clearing firm? Accounts reside with TS or
    someone else?

    2) Seems there’re 4 potential fees we need to pay, to trade on TS.
    a) Platform Fee, waived if a TS broker client.
    b) Monthly service fee of $99.95 if not meeting minimum criteria.
    c) Commissions, not appearing to be competitive at all.
    d) Data fees to pay varied exchanges. If I want to trade emini SP (CME), Dow (CBOT), Crude
    (NYMEX) & gold (COMEX) and go for the package deals, I need to pay $90 x 4 = $360, each
    month! Prohibiting, isn’t it?

    Please confirm, disconfirm and/or clarify. Thanks.


    1. 1. Yes.. their brokerages are sky high so would not recommend opening an account with them. They do have something new I believe where if you open an account with them and have the required funds in the account then you will be able to not have the monthly fee. Which in essence means that you get the account for free instead of paying the $125. That however is to be confirmed. I would recommend Multicharts instead of TS which is more robust and is only a one time fee. Their clearing firm is RJO Obrien
      2. A) This is what I mentioned above before it was a requirement to make 10 round trip trades a month. That may have changed.
      B) Same as mentioned above with the 10 round trip trades
      C) Commissions are absolutely atrocious.. I would put them at close to double of what you should be paying
      D) No data fees with NT (not sure about multicharts

      I personally don’t pay anything for TS a month but dont ask me how I worked that one out. Think I got a bit lucky lol

  30. Well, having used both Ninja and TS I have come out strongly in favor of TS. Some of the comments above re order entry and charting on TS are just plain ignorant. TS charts are far better than Ninja, order entry for Steve above, is nowhere near as complex as he says in TS, in fact I have no idea what you are smoking Steve? Window management in Ninja is just plain painful, in fact it is just an undockable mess.

    Just to clarify the situation re platform fees. If you do 10 round turn CONTRACTS per month, the TS platform is free. That’s 10 contracts, which could be just one trade, NOT 10 trades. Obviously a lot of people complaining haven’t been using the platform that long. “Commissions are atrocious” What? Are you for real? TS costs me the grand total of $20 a month, that’s it, including feeds and all and does everything you could want it to do as a discretionary trader.

    1. The commissions John I mentioned are not the exchange fee that you pay for its the commissions to enter a trade (round trip). I would agree with you that Tradestation has better charts but overall I would say that NT is actually better.

  31. Hi Marcello,
    I am just curious about 1 thing.
    I have an account with IC Markets, I trade FOREX.
    All I want to use NT for is for certain volume/tick/price analysis software which only works on NT, TS and MQ.
    Since I won’t actually be using NT to trade but just for the signals, I can successfully only use the free version of NT, is that correct?
    Or would there be any benefit in me getting a lifetime license?

  32. I used TS, and recently switched to IB. I use Ninja for futures and Option Vue with the IB data for options. Since IBs data feed is not up to snuff I also have to used a separate data feed provider for futures trading.

    I honestly, at this point, I think TS is the better answer for me. I’m going to give it a few months to see, but right now I see only one draw back for me……that being tradestations multiple account requirement. It just isn’t practical for my trading profile. With IB I have a single account, with portfolio based margin requirements. And I trade everything from one account. In return I pay huge fees for multiple solutions in order to get what I think is a minor improvement over TS.

    1. If you haven’t used TS before I would recommend that you would try NT. The only reason I still use TS is because I have been using it for over 10 years. Would highly recommend giving a NT a go.

  33. Hi Marcello,
    Above, I’ve read all the commentaries regarding NT &TS. Presently, I am using NT and its okeee, my biggest complaint regarding NT is that I can’t have a page with all my charts for the ES and another page with all my charts for the CL and then another page…..you get the idea. TS on the other hand had this feature but as you say, its not very user friendly and being Canadian they will no longer allow us access which rules out going back to TS for me. In the past, I have used E-Signal, they provide data feed to a slew of platforms and brokers (couldn’t find this again but I’m certain it also provides data feed to TS). The E-Signal platform is very user friendly, and through the years has greatly improved, there are less and less failures with price spikes. They have pages so that you can have one different market on each page and you can draw a trend line and not worry about having to manually extend it as is NT, or TS that takes numerous clicks to get a trendline in place. With E-Siganl the trend line extends itself until you choose to remove it. This week I will be installing a new trading computer and I am tossing with the idea of returning to E-Siganl although there is a monthly fee for their charts. Don’t really know what to do, I am out of TS that’s for sure so its a toss between Ninja and E-Signal, the real tie breaker is the trend line feature on E-Signal which extends, the historical data that can go back alot further and the one page per instrument. So, what say you, Marcello, it seems sooo confusing right now and I need to make a decision so I can install whatever on this new computer and get up and running. Thanking you in advance for all your feedback, much appreciated. Gloria

    1. I honestly haven’t used Esignal at all Gloria so I wouldn’t want to steer you in the wrong direction but I have been supporting NInjaTrader for quite some time for all of our in house traders in addition to everyone in the training program. I’d recommend NT only because I know the features they have and are quite useful. Would definitely recommend them.

  34. Marcello,
    I am new to trading concept.
    I made a plan to learn and practice trading, starting with S&P500 emini futures.
    I have started my studies while ago.Now I would like to practice paper trading, using live feed while I am studying .
    Could you please explain to me what steps should I take and in which order to set up my account.
    I’d like to use NinjaTrader as software but I am unsure about who should I get the feed from and what broker I should go with.
    Thanks much

    1. Hi Kaveh there are really a lot of options that you can use to open up accounts. Just choose an emini broker that provides a free trail and you should be able to get started right away.

  35. Hi Marcello,
    Do you know if you are able to have Canadian stocks with the free Kinetick data? I did a quick trial and was not able to get it to work.
    Thanks in advance


  36. Marcello,

    NT can be FREE with live trading. I am doing it myself NOW. No fee whatsoever unless you want additional data (indexes and such, $17/month). Certain “features” such as the chart trader and automated trading are not available in the FREE platform, but you CAN TRADE LIVE, NO PLATFORM FEE AT ALL.
    10 times in this comment section you keep saying you have to pay for NT to trade live. YOU DO NOT. PERIOD. I don’t pay for it and I trade live.

    TS is way ahead as far as charting goes, but FREE is better than $260/ month +++(no account).

  37. kaveh,

    If you’re still looking for a broker, AMP FUTURES seems the easiest to use for NT, you can get a demo platform in 15 minutes that’s good for 2 weeks, then you can request another, and another ….. I traded on their NT SIM for 8 months before I went live. You can also trade live, FREE, with NT, if you can live without automated trading, strategies, and the chart trader, otherwise it’s $60/month (billed $180 per quarter).

    1. Would not recommend AMP futures for anyone. Lots of our traders have had serious problems with AMP. Would recommend Advantage or Mirus Futures instead. Much better customer service and less problems. CQG feed has been quite a problem for many of our traders.

  38. BTW, The NT SIM is THE BEST SIMULATOR in existence. It doesn’t give you fills you would not likely get in REALTIME, it puts you in line with other orders already entered. If anything, I think I get BETTER fills in REAL TIME.

    Most SIMS will fill you as soon as you put an order in on the BID or ASK, which, as we all know, doesn’t happen in real time (makes you look like a REALLY good, profitable trader though!) . You have to wait behind orders that were already entered before yours. NT SIM does that.

    OK, I’m done….. Thanks.

  39. I’ve been using TradeStation for many years and recently wanted to give NT a try. IMO TradeStation in much better. I’ve had to pay a lot of money to get basic indicators I could get for free with TS. I wanted a simple moving average cross indicator that would send me email alerts with the averages crossed. That was about $600. And it doesn’t even work. With TS all your charts are neatly organized in Desktops. Each Desktop can have multiple worksapces to neatly organize your charts. With NT, your charts are all part of one workspace so organizing your charts is no easy task. As an options trader NT is basically useless. Tradestation is very strong in the options department. If you can trade options with NT I don’t know how and if it’s possible it is ridiculously hard to do. You won’t get a screen of options chains that’s for sure. If you are a day trader and only use a DOM that NT is good but TradeStation has a great DOM as well. The price of data is about the same for a full featured platform IMO. Once you add up all the data you want with one of NT data providers it’s going to be about the same as TS. What NT has that costs $60/mo with TS is the Matrix tool. Tradestations’ Matrix is $60 where you can do the same thing with NT’s version included in the platform. That’s a big plus for NT. But overall I’m not all that impressed with NT. People say it’s free which in concept is true, but if you have special indicators you want you’ll most likely have to pay a pretty penny for them. And maybe pay each month.

    1. Marc could be that you just started using the platform. For someone that is just getting started I would actually recommend NT over TS. I wouldn’t recommend NT for options as the platform isn’t really built for that. The DOM on TS I would say isn’t as good as the one on NT in my opinion. Most of our traders are now trading on the chart rather than on the DOM itself. Never heard of anyone having to pay extra for special indicators.

  40. Hi Marcello,

    You mentioned you had serious Problems with AMP. I also read some similar commemts in big mikes Forum but also without any details.

    MayI ask you to explain a bit more detailed the serious Problems you had?

    Before I decided To go with CQG I compared zenfire with cqg and I didnt read too much good from zenfire. I compared CQG (AMP) datafeed against xtrader(TT) which ins known to be fast and I couldnt figure out any difference so i decided To go with cqg.

    However I might change from AMP To another Broker before I Start live trading in Order To avoid troubles….


  41. I am very new to NT, and I am currently looking into learning the platform since it has a free sim version. I do have a few questions and I’d really appreciate it if anyone here could answer them.
    1) Is it true that with NT you can’t trade options? I am opening an account with interactive broker and I am pretty sure I can combine NT and IB together, does that mean I will have no problem trading options then?
    2) With the free NT simulator, is it real time? I downloaded the platform and has a few connection options (Kinetic EOD, Market Replay Connection and Simulated Data Feed). Can someone tell me what the difference is among these connection options?
    3) If I want to simulate with real time data as if I am trading with a live account on NT, do I need to pay for the Kinetic feed?

    Thank you very much!

    1. 1. Would have to double check with NT support to find out if you are able to trade with options. You can use the IB feed with NinjaTrader although I would not recommend using IB to trade anything other than options. Their commissions are very high for things like emini futures.
      2. The NT simulator is real time. Kinetic is real time feed and free end of day data, Market Replay is where you can download the data from previous days and replay them as if they were live (to be able to practice at night or weekends and watch the market as if it was live). Simulated data feed is just that a feed that simulates the live market.
      3. If you are going to trade live you do not need the Kinetic feed as the broker provides the feed or you.

  42. One important issue has not been touched in detail.
    And i am looking for this for quite some time.
    Comparing TS and NJ or even other platforms like Trade navigator.
    What is the best platform to program your own strategies, to backtest strategies and to automatic trade the strategies.
    In other words we are talking here about the functionality of the program languages provided by the different platforms, are there restrictions?.
    for example:
    1 multiple trades per bar
    2 possibility of looping, recursive logic
    3 adding to positions (pyramiding) in automatic trading
    4 easy to learn the language and support

    please your expertise or references to other websites that answer those questions

    1. I know that both platforms provide much of this functionality but you would need to check with them directly Yeshe. I haven’t done any programming as its easier for us to train our in house traders rather than try to automate.

    2. Hello Yeshe,

      that`s a good question. If the question comes to backtesting, the infos getting very rare.
      i started trading seriously last year (2013). After a couple of months i started with backtesting. I`m using NanoStationPro from WHS but i realiesed it is very difficult to implement historical datas.

      Now i´m searching in the last 2months for a software to make good backtesting and easy to implement historical data-feed.

      Please let me know about your experience.



  43. Hi,
    Just wanted to give an update from my post a year ago. I decided to stick w/TS. I can tell from having read all the comments again, that Marcello is a big NT proponent focusing on cost as the #1 issue. Which from the start of this thread back in May 2012 has changed it seems for TradeStation. TS if you plan to do 10 trades a month is free. Think about that a moment 10 trades (10 roundtrips) in a month and if you scale in or out your position it may be basically 1 Facebook(FB) trade you are in that month. My brokerage fees at TS are .006/share with a minimum of $1. So if I buy 200shares of FB it costs me $1.20 when I sell those 200shares it costs me $1.20. I have no other fees. I also (along with others) over the past few years am able to get $500 in free commissions (offered at the beginning of the a new year) if I open up a new account which basically involved shutting one account down and opening it up again with a new #. If you are not making 10 trades a month then you probably do not need either of these products. If you are not the developer type or willing to learn Microsoft C# it is hard to imagine you would want to create and write custom indicators in NT. For TS if the custom indicator is not provided by default then there is a good chance it is in the support forums which date back 12+ years. If you are simply going to just use the standard indicators like MACD, RSI, MovingAverages, or BollingerBands then once again you may not need these platforms. Just simply look for the best brokerage fees you can find with a reputable brokerage firm.
    NT you have to pay a license fee it is not free and you will also need to sign up with a brokerage and pay their fees. At TS they are the brokerage firm so everything is handled by 1 company. We are talking here about live trading not simulation or demo trading. In regards to using NT w/Kinetic there is a price increase per month (up from $50/month) if you want to view more than 500symbols which trading in the equities world is a real possibility. I have automated scans of several thousands of stocks nightly looking for the chart patterns I want to trade. I also have talked w/numerous TS support guys over the years when I needed help, you can NOT do that with NT. Seriously think about the time and effort it will take to explain a problem in an email that you may not understand the cause of. TS support guys will remote onto my desktop to help me resolve an issue. I am not saying TS doesnt have issues but I feel over the past few years they have tried to become more competitive with their pricing and their products.

  44. I am considering opening a Daytrading A/c with TradeStation to trade Fdax, Some trades by implication very short. Trading at Market could rapid/fast to instantaneous order execution be expected using Market Order?
    Does One Click Reverse Order facility exist on T S trading platform.
    Any views or experience much appreciated

  45. Hello,

    I live in Canada and already have a brokerage account. I am looking to day trade mostly US stocks with occasional Can stock trading. I am looking for a good charting program with data feed combination. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

  46. Many people who stumble upon this page page may read just the first few paragraphs and may incorrectly assume that Tradestation still costs $125 month, when in fact this changed some time ago.

    I’d like to suggest editing the original post at the top of the page to reflect the fact that there is no longer a $100 fee for using the tradestation platform — as long as you maintain $2500 in the account, something you’re quite likely to do if you’re using the platform to trade.

    The only fees currently on tradestation are for the data feed, which varies, depending on which feed you want, and for the add-ons, Radarscreen and Portfolio maestro. ($59 each, but free if you trade at least 10 contracts a month or make 50 equities trades or trade 5000 shares).

    I am not promoting one platform or the other btw. I am not yet familiar with Ninja Trader, though it sounds interesting.

    1. Peter you are incorrect… have spoken to many traders that recently opened accts at Tradestation and they are being charged the fee. That is only for special circumstances and it is only for certain accounts that is not for everyone.

    2. Specifically stated on their website:

      Account Service Fee : $99.95/month if account doesn’t meet the minimum criteria

      Minimum criteria :
      Equities and Futures accounts having the following trading activity or more in the preceding month:
      Futures: 10 round-turn futures or futures option contracts -or- 50 round-turn single stock
      Equities: 5,000 shares
      Equity & Index Options 50 contracts


      For clients with a Forex account only, a FREE version of RadarScreen limited to Forex symbols will be available and no account service fee is charged regardless of trading activity.


      Accounts having a balance of $100,000 on the last day of the previous calendar month.

  47. I have using TS for over six months before changing to NT. With the exception of the dome and market replay, TS is better…far better. I made the change due to commissions. I use IB and AMP with NT. I have experienced major stability issues with NT. Getting help is a horrible experience and due to the fact the NT is optimize for future trading, stock trading is a total mess. Many stock symbols and indicies have to be manually mapped in within the NT database. Why this database is not complete is a mystery to me. I am still attempting to get NT to help me get this done. I was told by a support rep at NT that the system does not utilize mult-cores—only one. TS can use as many as you have. There are so many things that TS does that NT does not do. It is simply not a stock trading tool. It is missing a scanning feature. It’s Market Analyzer cannot compare to Radar Screen. I paid for the mult-broker version . I trade about 1000 contracts per month. Amp will save me 450 per month in commissions and another 100 per month in data feeds. In less than 3 months, I would pay for NT. My IB rate are 1/2 that of TS. Over the year, I will save thousands. For now I will have suffer with NT. One good thing…I was able to transfer my indicators at no charge and they look better on NT. Another bad thing about TS. I was starting to get significant amount of slipage. I have not experience that at all with AMP’s CQG feed.

    1. Thanks Gregg but I recommend to most of our traders to not open accounts at AMP. Very bad customer service and many of our traders have had issues with them.

  48. Hi Marcello.
    I have been trading e mini S&P for 5 years ,I get my charts from Trade Station and Deal with AMP for my trading, do you know of any good Company in Toronto that carries Ninja platform so I could switch to.

    1. Ardie you can purchase NinjaTrader as a Canadian citizen. You may have to connect the feed to Interactive Brokers though. Canada govt regulations state that brokers have to register in both Canada and the United States so many brokerages won’t take Canadian companies. You should be able to use Interactive brokers.

      1. Hi Marcello ,

        Could you please add me to your skype list , I have good we can do togeather also I want to ask you about Ninja trader

        Skype : wael.farag.elsewedy.cables.

        Wael Farag

  49. NT is by far the best (agree with the above) – Also there is .net c# integration – the stuff you can do is limitless…

  50. Does anyone know of a bridge to link Tradestation to institutional platform for cash forex.Tradestation platform is for retail trading which has a wider spread. You cannot use tradestation software(automated trading) for tradestation institutional.

  51. NT script programing is a mess, why do I have to learn C#? one more thing, where the hell is the screener?

  52. I’m newbie on ATS. my friend recommend me to use multichart, IB(broker) and esignal(data feed). but it seems a little bit expensive to a newbie. I would like to find a cheapest data feed methods. Can anyone give me subjections?

    1. Mulithcart isn’t a good platform. In full disclosure I have never used it but have been told by friends and long term traders that it isn’t that good. IB has some of the highest commissions in the industry so I wouldn’t recommend them as a broker unless you are trading options. Look for small specialized E-mini brokerage houses and they will provide a free feed. The new NinjaTrader Brokerage (which used to be Mirus) now gives you the ability to use NT for free and you can also find a free feed through them. Hope that helps.

  53. Hi Marcello,

    I follow your travel log and trading log regularly. For you Columbia and Buenos Aires Station, are you hiring people to trade for you? If so do you hire people to trade for you in US.

    1. Right now Abhi we are not opening any trading centers in the United States. I am sticking with emerging economies because people there need this opportunity more than people in the states.

  54. I would like to also mention that NinjaTrader has always been a very stable platform that runs fast. It is the only platform that never cause me issues months after installation cause by conflicts between the platform and my other software that I have loaded on my machine.

  55. Hi there, would anybody know anything about issues with Ninja charts, in that if you scroll to the left to go back in time, there is a delay? Like a screen refresh problems? Thanks

  56. Hi Marcello and all – I have traded Equities and Options with RealTick, InstaQuote by Merrill Lynch for many years, I have never traded Futures. All the softwares I mentioned are old and outdated in many respects. Last month I finally decided to move my accounts to MXXXXXX, and their platform is called XXXXXXX; it is versatile and agile, and best of all you can trade all financial instruments under the sun. It is loaded with nice charts and plugins and best of all it enables Ninja Trader as plugin, and I am seriously considering the application as you and others on this site has confirmed my interest.
    First I am soliciting your opinion on the XXXXXXX. The platform is free, and they charge $65 per month for data including level II on Equities and Futures OpenView, also the commission is way lower than almost all the best brokerage houses, and they are ranked as equal or better compared to TradeStation. Their Customer service is one of the best or the best in the industry. The only con is when openning a new account; it is a lenghty process, and all conversation you have with them is documented every step of the way, and you have a password and pin number to enter the secured site built on the platform…some say it is intrusive, but they said transparency and honesty is part of the way they do business. Do you recommend Ninja Trader as plugin to this platform and how can I learn real profitable tradering techniques from your group especially understanding the charts and what each indicator is telling me and to confrim the multiple indicator signals real time. I want to hear from you and I think your world tour video was very inspiring. Thank you.
    PS: Some friends suggested that I move my accounts to TradeStation.

  57. The comparison is not impartial, TradeStation extends into fragments of the markets that Ninja Trader probably hopes to. Meaning, Tradestations clients are a fruit that Ninja wishes to harvest.
    Reality is, to be poetic, Ninja’s field hands have not learned to construe and substantiate terminology and market rapport at a level high enough to swing TradeStation clients .

  58. I am keen on day trading and I need to know what the cost and setup time for Ninjatrader is.

    What sort of support and help can I get for day trading. Do I need data feeds and how much is this going to cost me?

  59. Hi, I have just started trading and have taken a look around ur website which looks very interesting.
    My question relates to stop market order displays…
    On ninja, limit buy and sell orders are displayed – but not buy/sell stop orders. Do you know if any platform displays these order waiting to fill.

  60. What about free version of NT?
    Have you tried it, can you recommend it (or not)?
    I am asking from the beginner’s point of view, actually using MT4 (and its high leverage).

    1. You can use the free version but it doesn’t come with all of the features. One of the best features that NT has is the ability to use the chart trader and trade directly from the chart. Something that TS stole from NT recently on the upgrade to 9.5. You can only get the chart trader from the purchased version.

  61. Well, for sure NinjaTrader and Trade Station are not the only trading platforms that all futures traders use and they are not the best ones. I rather Sierra Chart and I think Sierra Chart is better than NinjaTrader and Trade Station. Sierra Chart is not only cheaper, but it has many more features.

    1. Sierra Chart is actually up and coming much like NInjaTrader was years ago Jorge. Their data feed, CTS, is still unbundled also which makes it very good as well.

  62. Tjhanks for the review. Used to trade in the 80s 90s even back to DOS..(know what that is?) retired and getting back into it. Just dwnlded Ninja..Thanks again and love the animals!.

  63. Hi, Marcello
    In order operate futures from Colombia with Ninjatrade, do i need a USA bank account for funding and withdrawal?
    William from Popayán.

  64. Marcello you sound like you have worked with other traders, helping them to get up and going. Is that true? If so I am trying to get set up with ninja trader but it is like pulling teeth to get them to help me. Can you help me?

  65. Does anyone know of a broker that utilizes Ninja Trader but allows one to trade stocks, ETFs, and options, as well as futures? Thanks.

  66. I have used Tradestation for a few years; while trading, the DOM can freeze up at times with large volume. So I started looking at NinjaTrader; so far I have not found out how to enter trades as easily and quickly as TS. Perhaps I just have not figured it out but on the TS DOM, just clicking on any price will put in an order. But clicking on any price on the Ninja Trader DOM is more complicated as I have to use both hands to maneuver the keyboard and the mouse to enter correctly. That seems not very efficient. Any suggestions?

  67. This article is out of date. I can’t speak for Ninja Trader, but I know that TradeStation now offers some of the capability that it didn’t have when this article was written.

    1. Richard I still use both Tradestation and Ninjatrader and I can tell you that it is not out of date. Tradestation simply copied the functions that NinjaTrader came up and let me tell you that they don’t work as well.

  68. Been on TS for 10 years …How about statergy optimization back testing , walk forward , is coding as easy as easy language in NT …. are generated reports as detailed as in TS …. overall how about Algo traders capabilities. … thanks .

    1. Back testing is better on TS, TS is actually the best at back testing, but TS is also the most horrible at fills. I had to move all of my accounts from Tradestation because they were giving me too much slippage.

  69. Hello Marcello

    I’m new to trading and looking to use Ninja Trader for my charting which brokerage will you recommend to use for uk users? Do you have a you tube video showing how to setup the ninja trader and broker?

    Many thanks

  70. Hi Marcello,
    I would like to know if you recomend Ninja as plattform for auto trading stategies.
    I `ve started using Multicharts.net special edition for AMP futures + CQG last years. Had bad experience:
    1) Gaps of data on charts
    2) Problems on executions, trades that should have entered did not.
    3) workspaces brake. Workspaces get corrupted , they break and start working wrong randomly taking trades on managing them different from what is coded.
    I am evaluating betwen Ninja and Tradestation.
    Thanks for the advice.

    1. Good to hear from you Natlia,
      First off… I would avoid AMP futures like the plague. Many traders I know have had serious problems with them. I know many traders that have algo trading and have automatic trading strategies on NT. TS is best for backtesting but the worst for order fills. Have not had significant issues that you mentioned. Every platform has its bugs.

  71. This article was written almost 5 years ago now. I see there is an ongoing discussion on which system is better. But my question is a bit different – after 5 years, are we still looking at these 2 platforms as being the best in the market for algo trading? I understand after so long those engaged in this discussion may be accustomed to these platforms. I don’t really want a list of alternatives to look at if these are the the bees knees, but I’m finding it hard to find current info comparing platforms. Should I NOW be considering still only these two platforms for model based (algo) trading of currencies?

    1. All of these platforms offer algo trading Christopher? Just because the dynamics of the markets have changed doesn’t mean that they platforms haven’t improved. I wouldn’t open an account with the TS brokerage also for everyone reading, HUGE slippage when other brokers offer much better order entry.

  72. NJ is a great one. I used it after MT4 but then dropped both and started using VertexFX because i found it faster with many features i really loved. NJ is still one of my favorite though

  73. Hi Marcello,
    i find NinjaTrader very complex to use because i am new to it but i like the platform. the videos on youtube does not really start from the scratch for a layman .please is the any link you can give me that will teach me the basis like buy ,sell, stop limit , buy stop etc. Also does it have RADAR SCREEN like Tradestation? if it does how do i activate it?

    many thanks

    1. Takes a bit of time to get used to it but once you do it is better. If your using radar screen for stocks I’m pretty sure NinjaTrader doesn’t have that feature just yet. NinjaTrader sticks to Forex and Futures (for now)

  74. Hi, the tick chart you use in TS is available in NT? Because on NT there is the possibility to set it to Ticks mode but the bars are totally different to the ones we see in TS. In NT the closest set up is the OHLO on tick mode as I saw. What set up you use in NT? Let me know if I miss something or what do you guys think.



  75. Hello Marcello.

    I want to ask you .if i want open NT demo account for practicing do i have to purchase the feed date or the demo account come with date no need to purchase the data.

  76. Hey Marcello- Does NT brokerage store OCOs on their servers or is it on your local PC? Say if you your internet goes down, then will that OCO go down too, potentially leaving you in a position with no stop loss, or is the OCO stored on their server?

  77. (May 20, 2016) This is an interesting comparison. I do purely algorithmic trading. TradeStation’s “Easy Language” is easy to learn – in a superficial sense. For experienced programmers, Easy Language hardly qualifies as a language. It is not a stack machine and thus does not support recursion. C# (which I have not yet tested in NT) is likely to be a lot more powerful and since it is my daily language, it is very attractive.

    What is the best reference manual for NT7 or NT8 – specifically an API manual.

    I am planing to start trading FOREX. I have written and tested some powerful algorithms int EL – only to find via a phone call that TS no longer supports FOREX.

  78. I am a long time TradeStation user but have recently found an interesting trading site which uses NT for their strategy platform. Is it possible to open a NT account and use simulated realtime date for free, taking the signals generated on the NT platform, and trade them in real time on my TS account? In otherwords, is the free simulated account actually using live real time data? And is all this without any data fees?

    1. No Larry that can’t be done… you always have to pay for data. The simulated data feed is something that expires I believe every two weeks now. It would be very complicated for you to trade live on a diff chart through Tradestation. I would recommend you trade with NT instead of TS. NT has much better entries, from my experience much better fills, and better customer service.

  79. I use both Tradestation and Ninjatrader.

    The thing that frustrates me the most about Ninjatrader is that there must be a fixed perimeter to drag the chart back and forth and then if you want to go up or down you must press control and the y axis in order to do so. Then the automatic feature stretches out the candles and doesn’t show you where you are at relative to historical moves. I am trying to figure out if there is a way to make it like Tradestation where if you click on background dragging you can move the whole screen up down and all around without stretching any candles and seeing price as it is relative to historical data.

    The issue that I have about Tradestation is that there is no expand/contract x axis feature similar to Ninjatrader when you click and hold on the bottom of the x axis and it will condense the data to fit all on your screen. This drives me nuts that they wouldn’t have such a simple feature. I don’t like pressing the arrow keys to zoom in or out because that is not what I want to do.

    I have talked to support about this and it seems there is nothing that they can do; although, I am still trying to figure out if there is a way to make the background dragging of Ninjatrader into manual mode that allows to drag which ever way I want without having to go up and down from the y axis. Let me know if you know anything about how to do this.

  80. I’ve been using TradeStation and they move my entree like a spread of 2 ticks. Is that normal in TS? Does that happen in NT?

  81. Hello. Marcello. You have been doing a great work. Great appreciation from you. I am very found of travel as well, and your blog is of great value and motivation for me to start up.

    I would like to day trade and i wanted to know how to start?
    What is the first step?, do i need a trading course before starting up? Do you recommend an agency?, a program?. I have a business degree and have a little bit of the theoretical understanding on how some of those financial instruments operates.

    Could you kindly guide me through the process. What are the steps to follow to be able to day trade.
    Thanking you in advance, and keep your great work up.

  82. Hi Marcello I saw that you made a comment that NT is only good for futures and forex. I am from Canada and trade primarily stocks. Would you say that NT would not be good for me? If not any other suggestions?


  83. i have a brokerage account in both ninja and tradestation. In fact i keep a comparison of how I do in both accounts. at the end of the month, im always ahead using ninja making the same trades. but i won’t give up my charting and backtesting on tradestation. i use automated traded on both platforms and tradestation is best. changes i can make myself on tradestation in 15 minutes takes a professional programmer an hour to do. executing trades on ninja is far superior than tradestation. but again what keeps me trading the 10 RT’s a month is the charting and backtesting and optimization.

  84. All of you are missing the boat. The real issue is order execution. I get angry every time I place an emini order with Tradestation. Your orders are held in TS until price hits your entry price, then it is sent to the exchange for execution where you are placed last in a que and you may or may not get filled. More importantly, price has to move 1 or 2 tics past your profit target before TS sends it to the exchange. If TS is slow getting your profit target to the exchange, you could miss getting filled and price will have already moved back towards your entry. Bummer! If you use a limit order for you stop, 99% of the time price will move right past your stop and you will have to use an emergency exit Market order “Close” button that executes 2 tics past when you clicked it. NO!, Tradestation does not allow you to use a Stop Limit order. The used to but they took it away because it was to easy to get a fill. In Short…. before you decide on a broker, ask about order execution.

  85. Marcello, I am based in the UK and have been studying and researching ways to trade ES futures from there using NT platform. However, there seem to be major issues with brokers over here, either they do not allow to open an account for UK resident or there seem to be some sort of glitches between brokers and platforms and live feeds.. If you know anything in this regard, or if its a common issue. Please could you shed some light on this as I am not sure who to turn to for answers. The question initially is which brokers do Brits use for this kind of trading?

    Also, since I am looking to trade in the UK… would I be trading in $ or £? would my money be in UK or in the US as the brokers seem to be US companies?

    I would mutely appreciate your help on this.

  86. Hey Marcello,

    I just started using Tradestation to automate strategies and have been having trouble getting orders filled. Backtesting works fine, and all was good during the simulation, but when I went live, orders weren’t being filled even though they show up on the chart. Have you run into this problem before with TS or could it be something else. Should I try NT?

  87. I swing trade. Ninjatrader used to be able to connect to yahoo and correct charts due to dividends and splits. Yahoo quit providing that service. NinjaTrader is not going to do anything to correct charts. Doing it manually is time consuming. Can anyone give feed back on using Tradestation for swing trading. Do they provide corrected charts ? Any comments on swing trading with tradestion will help.

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