When it comes to trading, you want the latest and greatest. Traders who make a living on their accounts, like Shawn Lucas, will rely heavily on the features of their trading platform to make money. There’s so much to account for when looking into platforms. There’s questions raised like:
- “Does my broker use the platform?”
- “Are the connections reliable?”
- “What happens when I turn the platform off?”
Here are a few of the most popular and mainstream trading platforms along with opinions traders have for each of them.
First, we have Alveo. Alveo is a proprietary trading platform created by professional trader Shawn Lucas and other traders to pull in the best features of other platforms into one. Alveo works with the Apiary Fund and their education system teaching others how to trade the markets and get started on their own accounts. Therefore, Alveo has a certain simplicity to it so that new and learning traders are not overwhelmed and given so much that they don’t know what to do with the application. With this though, there’s still all the other functionality that a trading platform needs for a professional trader. Alveo includes 44 indicators and direct connection to the LPs, giving some of the best spreads and no-commission trading out there. The Alveo application is written in C#, allowing for a trader to go in and get a custom indicator, EA, or script written relatively easily. There’s also an online community forum where individuals go to share custom-made code and answer questions. Alveo is an Apiary Fund only platform, and only trades the 29 pairs that are within the Apiary Fund. These pairs however, are the most common FOREX pairs along with Silver and Gold metals. With it being the primary platform for the company, they have weekly classes on how to use the platform and a readily available support team to answer application questions.
Metatrader is one of the most commonly used platforms out there. Most brokers use Metatrader as their platform, and it has many functionalities for traders who are looking to experiment with new things and have a copious amount of trading experience. With all the functionality that Metatrader offers, it can be overwhelming for a new trader or for someone looking for just basic functionality. It’s a free platform, however, and because of its popularity, there’s a pretty vast marketplace of indicators, EAs, and Scripts you can buy. It’s more difficult to code your own, though, due to the coding language of Metatrader being a custom language called MQL4. There are many updates that come with Metatrader due to bugs in custom languages, and having high volume trading strategies can be difficult for Metatrader at times.
NinjaTrader is another extremely popular platform to trade with. Like Alveo, the coding is in C#, so customization can be very simple for someone with coding knowledge. Like MT4, a wide range of brokers allow trading with NinjaTrader. However, not as vast a quantity as Metatrader allows for. It’s more scalping friendly than Metatrader which comes at a cost when using it in live mode. The cost of the platform, however, is quite affordable compared to other platforms such as TradeStation. With its popularity and popular coding language comes third-party add-ons with ease. It does take a bit of time to learn the platform, and if you’re coding yourself, it can take additional time due to certain features. A separate cost for a data feed is typically needed when using NinjaTrader, as well.
Finally, we have TradeStation. TradeStation, like Alveo, is specific to a trading company. You must trade with TradeStation to use the platform. Unlike Alveo, the platform comes at a cost and doesn’t have an education program to go along with it. TradeStation does have many add-ons available and a vast online community to go to when confusion with the platform arises. It’s pretty easy to code strategies into TradeStation to use, especially with added help from forums like with Alveo. One of the biggest downfalls of TradeStation is that there’s no demo mode to try the platform before you have to start incurring the costs of the platform.
All in all, when going to choose a platform, you should look at it as Shawn Lucas did when creating Alveo. You might ask yourself, considering your skill level, what will have everything you need, not be too busy, and allow you to add what you want later? If this is the outlook you have, Alveo and TradeStation are in the top bracket. If you’re going for a platform that you can use wherever you go, MetaTrader and NinjaTrader are on top. But if you’re looking for the cheapest and simplest option, especially to learn the trade and experience a trading platform, Alveo goes to the top of the list.