Indicator Settings

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An Indicator is a visual technical analysis tool, used to analyze market conditions and identify and forecast trends and market patterns. An indicator is a visualization of a mathematical formula, and consists of one or more Plots – lines, histograms, series of points or crosses, highs and lows, left and right ticks, or a combination of the above. Indicators are computed using the price, volume, and (occasionally) open interest data.

Each indicator, applied to a chart, is set individually and has its own Format Indicator window. Indicator Title is displayed in the title bar of the Format Indicator window. Multiple instances of the same indicator can be applied to the same chart; each instance will have its own Format Indicator window, allowing different settings to be used for each of the instances.

Basic adjustments to the indicator's logic can be made by changing the Input Values. Indicator Style, Maximum Bars Back value, and Base Data Series can be set, and the recalculation frequency selected.


Setting Input Values

An Input is a constant used in the indicator calculations. Indicators can have one or more inputs, or none at all.

Each input is assigned a name. There are three types of inputs: Numeric, True/False, and String.

Indicators can be modified by changing the input Values.

One of the main advantages of using the inputs is that basic adjustments to the study's logic can be made by simply changing the input values, without the need to edit the studies' actual code.

Most, but not all, indicators use input values; to learn more see Default Studies Inputs. The inputs can be modified before as well as after the indicator has been inserted.

Indicator Inputs can be set from the Format Indicator window:

  1. Open the Format Indicator window.

    To open the Format Indicator window, position the mouse pointer over the indicator; double-click once the Pointer Pointer.png changes into a Hand Hand.png.

    The Format Indicator window can also be opened by one of the following methods:
      - Position the mouse pointer over an indicator; once the Pointer Pointer.png changes into a Hand Hand.png, right-click and then click Format Indicator Name
      - Open the Format Objects window; in the Indicators tab, select an indicator and click the Format button. See Opening Format Objects Window.

    Note: The Format Indicator window for the indicator being inserted will open automatically if the Format check box in the Insert Study window is checked.

  2. Select the Inputs tab.
  3. In the Value column, click on the value of the input that you want to change and enter the desired value.
Tip: To use these general settings as the default for the selected indicator, check Use as Default check box.


Setting Style

The Type, Color, Style, and Weight of the indicator's plot can be customized; if an indicator consists of multiple plots, each plot can be set individually.
Changes to indicator style settings will be applied to the Chart Window in real time.

Indicator style can be set from the Format Indicator window:

  1. Open the Format Indicator window.

    To open the Format Indicator window, position the mouse pointer over the indicator; double-click once the Pointer Pointer.png changes into a Hand Hand.png.

    The Format Indicator window can also be opened by one of the following methods:
      - Position the mouse pointer over an indicator; once the Pointer Pointer.png changes into a Hand Hand.png, right-click and then click Format Indicator Name
      - Open the Format Objects window; in the Indicators tab, select an indicator and click the Format button. See Opening Format Objects Window.

    Note: The Format Indicator window for the indicator being inserted will open automatically if the Format check box in the Insert Study window is checked.

  2. Select the Style tab.
  3. In the Type column, select the plot type from the drop-down list box.
  4. In the Color column select the plot color from the drop-down palette box.
  5. In the Style column select the plot style from the drop-down list box.
  6. In the Weight column select the plot weight from the drop-down list box; the weight can only be selected for the solid line style.
Tip: To use these general settings as the default for the selected indicator, check Use as Default check box.


Setting Maximum Bars Back

All indicators based on past data use a certain number of bars for their calculations. The number of bars is called Maximum number of bars a study will reference, or Maximum Bars Back. You can select to set this value manually, or to have it set automatically (Auto-Detect). The Maximum Bars Back value cannot be smaller than 1 and cannot be greater than actual number of bars on the chart. This value shows how many bars a study requires to be calculated before it can plot first results on the chart. It means that there can be no plot or any other visual output on the X number of bars at the beginning of the chart, where X = MaxBarsBack or Maximum number of bars a study will reference.


Auto-Detect Maximum Bars Back

Automatic detection of the Maximum Bars Back value can be chosen from the Format Indicator window:

  1. Open the Format Indicator window.

    To open the Format Indicator window, position the mouse pointer over the indicator; double-click once the Pointer Pointer.png changes into a Hand Hand.png.

    The Format Indicator window can also be opened by one of the following methods:
      - Position the mouse pointer over an indicator; once the Pointer Pointer.png changes into a Hand Hand.png, right-click and then click Format Indicator Name
      - Open the Format Objects window; in the Indicators tab, select an indicator and click the Format button. See Opening Format Objects Window.

    Note: The Format Indicator window for the indicator being inserted will open automatically if the Format check box in the Insert Study window is checked.

  2. Select the Properties tab.
  3. In the Maximum Bars Back section click the Auto-Detect radio button.
Tip: To use these general settings as the default for the selected indicator, check Use as Default check box.


Set Maximum Bars Back Manually

Please note that in order for the indicator to be displayed, the number of bars in the data series on which the indicator is based must be greater than the indicator's Maximum Bars Back setting.

Maximum Bars Back value can be set manually from the Format Indicator window:

  1. Open the Format Indicator window.

    To open the Format Indicator window, position the mouse pointer over the indicator; double-click once the Pointer Pointer.png changes into a Hand Hand.png.

    The Format Indicator window can also be opened by one of the following methods:
      - Position the mouse pointer over an indicator; once the Pointer Pointer.png changes into a Hand Hand.png, right-click and then click Format Indicator Name
      - Open the Format Objects window; in the Indicators tab, select an indicator and click the Format button. See Opening Format Objects Window.

    Note: The Format Indicator window for the indicator being inserted will open automatically if the Format check box in the Insert Study window is checked.

  2. Select the Properties tab.
  3. In the Maximum Bars Back section click the User Specified radio button.
  4. In the User Specified text box enter a Maximum Bars Back value.
Tip: To use these general settings as the default for the selected indicator, check Use as Default check box.


Selecting Base Data Series

An indicator can be based on any one of the data series in a multi-symbol chart. When applied to a multi-symbol chart, an indicator is based on the data series with the Data # 1 by default.

Indicator's base data series is selected from the Format Indicator window:

  1. Open the Format Indicator window.

    To open the Format Indicator window, position the mouse pointer over the indicator; double-click once the Pointer Pointer.png changes into a Hand Hand.png.

    The Format Indicator window can also be opened by one of the following methods:
      - Position the mouse pointer over an indicator; once the Pointer Pointer.png changes into a Hand Hand.png, right-click and then click Format Indicator Name
      - Open the Format Objects window; in the Indicators tab, select an indicator and click the Format button. See Opening Format Objects Window.

    Note: The Format Indicator window for the indicator being inserted will open automatically if the Format check box in the Insert Study window is checked.

  2. Select the Properties tab.
  3. In the Base Study On section, select the data series that the indicator is to be based on from the drop-down list box.


Selecting SubChart

An indicator can be placed into a new or an existing SubChart in a chart window. To learn more, see SubCharts.
The SubChart to place the indicator into can be selected from the Format Indicator window:

  1. Open the Format Indicator window.

    To open the Format Indicator window, position the mouse pointer over the indicator; double-click once the Pointer Pointer.png changes into a Hand Hand.png.

    The Format Indicator window can also be opened by one of the following methods:
      - Position the mouse pointer over an indicator; once the Pointer Pointer.png changes into a Hand Hand.png, right-click and then click Format Indicator Name
      - Open the Format Objects window; in the Indicators tab, select an indicator and click the Format button. See Opening Format Objects Window.

    Note: The Format Indicator window for the indicator being inserted will open automatically if the Format check box in the Insert Study window is checked.

  2. Select the Properties tab.
  3. In the SubChart section, in the scrolling list box, select Show On Top or Show On Bottom to place the indicator into a new SubChart at the top or at the bottom of the Chart Window, respectively, or select a SubChart# to place the indicator into an existing SubChart.


Advanced properties

  • Update on every tick

You can elect whether to recalculate an indicator every time a new tick is received in real-time, or only at the close of each bar. One or the other may be more appropriate, depending on the indicator's algorithm. Update on Every Tick option is enabled by default. Updating a large number of complex indicators on every tick will require substantial system resources.

Note: This option does not affect the calculation on historical data. On historical data the indicator is calculated on the bar close values only.

Indicator's update rate is set from the Format Indicator window:

  1. Open the Format Indicator window.

    To open the Format Indicator window, position the mouse pointer over the indicator; double-click once the Pointer Pointer.png changes into a Hand Hand.png.

    The Format Indicator window can also be opened by one of the following methods:
      - Position the mouse pointer over an indicator; once the Pointer Pointer.png changes into a Hand Hand.png, right-click and then click Format Indicator Name
      - Open the Format Objects window; in the Indicators tab, select an indicator and click the Format button. See Opening Format Objects Window.

    Note: The Format Indicator window for the indicator being inserted will open automatically if the Format check box in the Insert Study window is checked.

  2. Select the Properties tab.
  3. Check Update on Every Tick check box to recalculate the indicator on every tick; uncheck the box to recalculate the indicator on bar close only.
Tip: To use these general settings as the default for the selected indicator, check Use as Default check box.
  • Realtime-history matching

The detailed description of this feature can be found here: Realtime-History Matching

  • Skip identical ticks

The detailed description of this feature can be found here: Skip Identical Ticks

Setting Last Price Marker

Last Price Marker is a special label displayed on the price scale that indicates the latest value of indicators' plots.

If an indicator (study) has multiple plots then the markers can be displayed for each plot.

The color of each marker is the same as of the corresponding plot.

To turn on/off Last Price Marker for an indicator (study):

  1. Open the Format Indicator window.

    To open the Format Indicator window, position the mouse pointer over the indicator; double-click once the Pointer Pointer.png changes into a Hand Hand.png.

    The Format Indicator window can also be opened by one of the following methods:
      - Position the mouse pointer over an indicator; once the Pointer Pointer.png changes into a Hand Hand.png, right-click and then click Format Indicator Name
      - Open the Format Objects window; in the Indicators tab, select an indicator and click the Format button. See Opening Format Objects Window.

    Note: The Format Indicator window for the indicator being inserted will open automatically if the Format check box in the Insert Study window is checked.

  2. Select the Style tab.
  3. In the Marker column, select or deselect the checkboxes for the corresponding plots.
Tip: To use these general settings as the default for the selected indicator, check Use as Default check box.
Tip: The Last Price Marker can also be used to control how a study is displayed in the Scanner.

For example, the RSI study contains three plots, each with its own marker checkbox.

To display the data for only one of the three plots in the Scanner:

  1. Uncheck the other two markers.
  2. Check Use as default.
  3. Click OK.

The next time this study is added to the Scanner, only the plot that was checked will be displayed in the Scanner.

For more information about displaying indicators' plots in Scanner please see Displaying Studies with Two or More Plots