Direct ChartTrader

Questions about MultiCharts and user contributed studies.
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Direct ChartTrader

Postby mid_trader » 21 Feb 2009


I would Love to trade directly from the Chart Like NT6x, especially with playback to practice stategies off-line, but don't see this feature on the list. I love MC ad EL in MC that is not in NT (Which is C#).

Any Plans for Same?
Anyone else hoping for this feature?

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Postby bowlesj3 » 21 Feb 2009

Hi mid_trader,

Just curious. How do you trade directly off the chart? Enter orders, cancel orders, etc.


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Postby RobotMan » 21 Feb 2009

Hi John,

MultiCharts, has the best charting ability that I have found. I can write (in PowerLanguage) just about any indicator and have it update in real time and have just about any type of barchart update in real-time. I like it and I like the direction that TSS is going. However, I am not the demographic that they are marketing to (yet). I am a discretionary intra-day trader.

Since this is a MultiCharts forum, I don't like to get off topic. However, In order for me to actually trade, I need to have a broker and an order entry platform that will allow discretionary entries and exits. One of the best I have found is NT powered by Zen-Fire order processing engine. You can download a free copy and use it with real-time data for free until you actually start to trade real money just to test it out. It has a DOM and charting, just like many front ends do. You can enter orders directly with one click on the DOM and have pre-set Advanced Trade Management (ATM) that sets targets and stops however you like and blindingly fast.
Looking at your chart and trading in the DOM is sometimes very confusing. One is graphical and the other is tabular. Hard for your mind to switch back and forth. One of the greatest advantages of NT Chart Trading, though, is the ability to right click directly in the chart and place a stop, limit, or stop-limit order wherever you want. You can click-drag the entry if you would like and after your order is hit, you can let the ATM manage the trade or you can click and drag the remaining targets and exits - right in the chart. It's very clean and very fast. You really need to play with it for a day or two to really appreciate how user friendly it is to trade with. It's really quite amazing and I look forward to the day that MC can do the same.

Hope that helps.

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Postby TJ » 22 Feb 2009

MultiCharts, has the best charting ability that I have found. I can write (in PowerLanguage) just about any indicator and have it update in real time and have just about any type of barchart update in real-time....

update in real time is a major convenience.

some charting software make you do the followings:
1. delete the old indicator and re-apply the newly edited and compiled indicator,
(imagine you have 10 charts !!!)

or worse still,

2. exit the program, install the "new" indicator, then apply the "new" indicator again.
(well, you are not going to tweak anything or experiment any new logics during trading hours.)


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Postby geizer » 22 Feb 2009

Trading of the chart would be a real value to a discretionary trader.
By reading the forum, I see some members of the community have implemented great custom build programs in PowerLanguage to help placing the orders. Since Multicharts have automated trading capabilities, I think that the same underlying mechanisms can be used to provide discretionary traders with the tools to place orders manually. I am not sure how many traders of the community are discretionary traders, and how many are fully automated, but just a thought.

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Postby bowlesj3 » 22 Feb 2009

In a way I am a discretionary trader who uses MC and its EL to do chart trading. I just don't use MC to actually place or control the order. I use the database program. However I have not taken the time to get familiar with MCs auto order execution but if it does work you could transfer what I do over to MC. Here are some of the things you could do.

You could have a study place horizontal lines out front of the chart. You place them where you want to take entry and also exit (the study detects their location - I am not talking about arming them to execute an order but I guess you could do that for entry). You also have the EL code place text out front of the prices which are single letters. You click on these to issue commands to the study as to order type etc. All the commands are in the help which are required to do this. Even if your entry points are from subchart #2 bounces you can do it. I am doing all this now. Works just great. If MC has order execution commands to change an orders limit for entry/exit there is no reason this can't be used for that either.

I must say that what I am doing is a lot more complex than what I just described because it has my strategy heavily built into it. It is custom chart trading with database assist to make it much more custom with user prompts for mutli choice options that I have programmed directly to fit my strategy.

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Postby bowlesj3 » 22 Feb 2009

Regarding getting MC be used for chart trading as roughly described above, maybe I should spell it out especially for someone new to MC. One request. If you actually get this to work please send me a copy since I may modify my approach and move some of the order execution to MC rather than doing it from my database program (or at least I will consider it). My approach is similar in ways to what I describe below and gives me a lot more power but has some drawbacks too. I have a freeze on my programming now and want to focus only on trading at the moment so it could be years before I ever give this a shot myself.

Two assumptions must be true before this will work. 1/ your symbol has to tick fairly fast because these commands do not execute until the ticks come trough. 2/ The MC auto order execution has to work for your broker. I gather this is working for IB now. I have never tried it with MC 2.1.999.999. It has to be able to issue a market, limit and change order and maybe a cancel would be a good idea. If there is no cancel maybe you can program the study to reinitialize and you issue the cancel from the brokers API.

TIP, read the help contents sections for Text, Arrows and Trend lines thoroughly (at least 2 times) before you attempt this. It is a lot more fun than the frustration you will encounter if you do not.

TIP, do a search in the forum for "reserve words". You will eventually find some extra commands that may not be in the help. I think it was Andrew who put them out there.

TIP. this study has to run on every tick so you have to set it to do that.

Here is the rough logic or specifications for the MC chart trading study.

For a quick overview, what you will be doing is putting out text codes that you highlight to interactively control the study and putting two lines out that you use to set the value for your orders.

When the study first starts, on the last bar of the chart on barstatus = 2 the text codes and the horizontal lines are put out in front of prices a bit (on the 1 minute bars most likely or on your smallest bar size). Here is the command to put them out front.

Variable: TimeLoc(0);
TimeLoc = MinutesToTime(TimeToMinutes(time) + whateverbars);
TimeLoc is used in the TL_new command and the Text_New command.

There is a similar command set if you are using bars with seconds but I have never actually used these ones. They are not in the help. They are built in functions found with the editor.

Variable: TimeLoc(0);
TimeLoc = SecondsToTime_s(TimeToSeconds(time_s) + whateverbars);
TimeLoc is used in the TL_new_s command and the Text_New_s command.

You have to set your chart forward spacing properly for this to work since you are putting the text codes and lines out front of price a bit.

The two text codes L and S stand for Long and Short. M, L and C stand for market, limit and change. Maybe Q is cancel/quit. The text ID codes which are obtained from the Text_New commands must be stored so you know what has been highlighted by you to issue your commands interactively back to the study. To initialize an order you highlight L or S. The Text_GetActive command detects this. Again the study knows the Ids in advance from when the study first put them out. The playsound command starts the beeping on each tick as it detects the active text. Your code only acts on the first beep and ignores the rest and your code knows when you deactivate the text and it stops beeping. You click the chart to deactivate the text and shut the beeping off. At this time the line switches from dotted to solid white. You move the line by clicking and grabbing it in the middle and moving it to your preferred entry point. For getting the value of where you placed the line you use the TL_GetValue command. You have to always store the previous location data for the line for this next step. Once it detects it is in a new location it turns solid red and has the entry price showing to the right (rounded to the smallest unit of price move). So next you click M or L for market or limit. Again the Text_GetActive is used to know that you have highlighted theses codes on the screen and playsound issues the beep to let you know it got the command from you. If M and prices hit the line then auto execution is called to send out a market order. I gather MC now has confirmation for orders issued to IB. If yes then you could have MC play a sound when the broker software confirms the order. If L is clicked the order is put out right away if you want as a limit. Maybe LI is limit immediately and LT is limit on touch. Okay so prices move to the line which is constantly being kept out front of price a bit by the study and when prices touch you are in. The system of course knows this. Once you are in the trade the line turns from red to green to let you know that MC has got the confirmation from your broker. You have already positioned a target line that was put out by the system on barstatus = 2. You had to do this with a rough estimate before you clicked M or L. You can decide to refine this exit line position at any time. Maybe you have another set of M and L and C commands to set this exit to market or limit and to change it. Again when ever you click a text MC uses the playsound to beep letting you know you should click the chart to stop the beeping. Here is a tip for moving the line. Use TL_GetActive to ensure the study is not going to move the line forward when it is active which is when you are moving it to a new price location. I think you have to test for status –2 to know that line is not currently active and being moved by the user.

This is important. When the study first starts up, do not have the study put the text code or lines out before barstatus=2 and when it does then have it beep to let you know it is ready. If you put the text and lines out before barstatus = 2 it will (without fail) delete them on you and replace them on every single tick until barstatus = 2 (an MC quirk that was driving me crazy until I figured out what was going on). It is much like the fact that it zeros variables on each new tick until barstatus = 2 unless you use intrabarpersist. The problem with this one is there is no solution I know of except waiting until barstatus=2. Once they are out there have the study use playsound to beep and let you know. You can then use the set location commands to move them forward so they are always available to you for highlighting when you need them.

Again you should definitely be able to get this to work since I have done basically everything I mention above in various studies. As implied I have never sent a plug in order out to a broker from MC so that is the part I am not sure of. It obviously isn't as good as true chart trading but would not be too bad if the ticks are coming in fast.

That is it. Clear as mud. Happy programming.


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