Trade Ideas Review – An In-Depth, Unbiased Look
Trade Ideas Review (5/24/2016) – I had a recent and thorough conversation with Dan Mirkin, CEO & Senior Managing Partner of Trade Ideas, regarding his artificial intelligence-based software. That conversation was a catalyst for me, sincerely. Eye opening.
This is my personal evaluation and opinion of the software and it’s abilities, my perspective. I intend to be very honest with everyone reading this “review.” The technology both with the scans and artificial intelligence is impressive. If I didn’t think that Trade Ideas was an effective tool, I wouldn’t be writing about it. I’m not a spokesperson, nor do I push any products/subscriptions onto anyone. All information offered on this site is free to all, and always will be.
The reason I felt it necessary in this case is for the “wow factor” that I experienced on a personal level, that I feel the need to share with other traders. I’m well aware of the number of trading-related software products that claim to “predict” moves within the market, and subscriptions services galore that do the same. Most of these services are absolute scams that real traders want nothing to do with. Keeping this in mind, I was very skeptical that Trade Ideas would be similar, it just seemed “too good to be true.”
After Dan and I spoke, I began to notice other traders throughout social media that I have respected for a while using Trade Ideas for their own trading. I thought to myself “surely they must find it useful or it wouldn’t be a part of their strategy.” I think see others put it to good use inspired me to do the same.
In this Trade Ideas “review” I’ll go more in-depth into some of my favorite features, and areas that I find most useful for my trading within the Trade Ideas software.
Trade Ideas Review – First Thoughts
My first thoughts… how about skeptical as hell? I had a whole list of questions for Mirkin on what made his software so different from the other “stock callers” out there. No way this software is as good as it claims to be. There has to be a catch. More on that later…
It also seems expensive. The standard subscription plan is $99 per month (or $888 annually), with the Artificial Intelligence & Oddsmaker Backtesting feature being an additional $89 per month, making your premium subscription $188 per month (15% discount and link offered later in this review). In a world where fools pay comparable fees for chatroom access and emails, in addition to the occasional $1000 DVD, Trade Ideas gives you a lot more bang for your buck. No 16 year old furus/gurus writing you nightly emails & watch lists here.
You a chat room guy? Though not my style, many find chat rooms to be extremely useful and helpful to their trading. Trade Ideas offers a free trading chat room.
When I logged into Trade Ideas for the first time, I recalled the same feeling as logging into a new broker… a feeling of overwhelming confusion. How do I… do anything? So of course, I started to click around curiously trying to find my way. I figured out a few things on my own. I found the Trade Ideas chatroom and a few other features, but didn’t realize what I was missing out on until I had someone point it out. Like any tool, it is only as good as the person using it. You have to know how to use the tool for it to be effective. The big difference with Trade Ideas is that every subscriber receives a 1-on-1 “Hour-of-Power” training session with an expert educator on the software. In addition, loads of webinars and training videos are available to view. Their customer service and education team is outstanding.
Once you’ve had your training, the process is much more streamline. You start to realize that after creating price alerts, developing strategies, backtesting those strategies, tweak here, tweak there, backtest again, and nail your first created strategy… that you’ve still only just begun to scratch the surface of the capabilities of this system.
Trade Ideas Review – Channels
What’s your cup of tea? Are you an early riser that likes to catch the moves before the open? “Premarket” shows all of your gappers and premarket movers. Maybe you’re an options put/call ratio monitor and trader? “Options” will have everything you’re looking for. Every channel has a similar look, but each is specific in finding opportunities related to the channel name.
A convenient feature, the Channel Bar helps you navigate easily and quickly through the software. One click, and you arrive at a new channel where 10 or so different small windows open up to display related trading data on the topic that you selected. The default layout of each channel is similar what is shown below, with a number of charts and windows.
Trade Ideas Review – Social Media Channel
Love this one. The Social Media channel uses Trade Ideas proprietary social media integrations. It not only looks at exchange data, but also unstructured social data. It tracks which stocks are discussed the most on social media over different time frames. In today’s world, social media is increasingly where key news events break first. On this channel social media and market data are analyzed and combined.
An old strategy of mine was to follow heavily followed traders simply for their influence on a ticker. A day they mention a move on the name, it would receive significantly more attention than the avg day, therefore creating substantial liquidity. Finding unusual volume on tickers that normally wouldn’t see it. This tab takes the leg work out of that strategy completely.
Social Media features several alert windows that include:
- Unusual Social Mentions
- Most Discussed and Trending Up
- Most Discussed and Trending Down
- Social Media Stream window that labels individual trading strategies based on analytics
Trade Ideas Review – Surge Channel
Aside from the regular Volume channel, I find Surge to be impressive, as will any traders that look for sudden surges of volume. The channel spots movers with windows that include:
- Most Upward Momentum Right Now
- Most Downward Momentum Right Now
- High Volume Movers
- Instantaneous Volume Surge
- Explosive Daily Range
I really like the Most Upward and Downward Momentum windows, because in addition to telling you what’s moving, it will also display the most recent support/resistance of where the move will potentially end and/or reverse.
Trade Ideas Review – ActiveTrading
Probably my favorite channel, traders looking for tickers that move quickly will find ActiveTrading very useful. The channel was designed by Trade Ideas Director of Education, Jamie Hodge. Before joining the Trade Ideas team, Jamie spent more than 15 years as a professional trader. The ActiveTrading channel is information rich and contains windows that update data very quickly. I really enjoy using this one, as I can find reversal plays fairly easily. Windows on this channel include:
- Biggest Bounce on Losers
- Biggest Pullbacks on Winners
- Derived Data Stream
- Turbo Breaks Up
- Turbo Breaks down
- Most Unusual Daily movers
Trade Ideas Review – Holly A.I. Channel
This is a delicate subject/channel that I wanted address in detail in this Trade Ideas review. Mixed feedback throughout the community on Holly. Here’s mine, beginning with the positive:
The artificial intelligence package includes the backtesting feature using the “Oddsmaker” in addition to custom price alerts and the A.I. channel. “Holly” as she is referred to, is the world’s only artificial intelligence engine for the retail investor. The best thing about the A.I. technology is that when the market closes, Holly starts to work the whole day over re-trading everything and learning from today, for the benefit of tomorrow. All the strategies get redesigned by her based on today, the names and the exploited concepts stay, but the filters get changed to improve after every single day of trading.
Trade Ideas is the only system on the planet that does this. Essentially, it learns from itself each day that passes. The result is a curated, distilled stream of vigorously tested long and short opportunities, with stop loss targets and profit target parameters automatically assigned (and displayed on the chart) for every new trade idea. This information advantage can save both novices and veterans hours of research and testing. Figuratively speaking, she is statistically perfect.
Now for the negative (sort of). The “catch” I mentioned earlier… Holly is not a magical stock finding machine that pulls 100% green trades. I’m sure you’ve heard “there is no holy grail in trading.” She trades statistical setups that are ideal for profits. Veteran traders do the same, but will trade their fair share of losses as well. Holly is no different in that regard. At the times of this review, her average win rate is around 50%, which is lower than most advanced trader’s win rates with her overall profit margin over the course of 90 days being roughly a positive 40 points. However, as the display below shows, Holly’s 90 day return far exceeds that of the S&P 500.
What you probably don’t realize (even if you currently use the software) is that in theory, Holly’s profit margin is much more than 40 points. Holly’s numbers are skewed, in a sense that time stops are set for every trade at the 60 minute mark. On a regular basis, Holly will exit a trade at the 60 minute mark no matter what, even at times when any trader in their right mind would never exit. She pinpoints entries to a “T,” but is awful when it comes to exits. For this reason, many of her entry signals can be rolled into swing and/or long term trades. This feature is by design, and if you swing trade… can benefit you enormously.
That being said… if a new trader were to subscribe to Trade Ideas and follow Holly’s trades like a sheep, they would likely wipe out their account from commissions, slippage, etc. However, if they were to utilize Holly as a “cherry picking tool,” it can be very valuable. Today, there are several traders I know that rely solely on Holly to trade. A.I. is the future of trading, there is no debate.
In my opinion, the best way to consider Holly is as just another pro trader on Twitter. She shoots out alerts and entries/exits consistently, but that doesn’t mean you have to follow each of them, same as you wouldn’t with other traders. Instead, try pulling up her most recent entry on a chart and summing the trade up for yourself. If it looks good, take it. She may have nailed the entry for you. If it doesn’t, let it go. This feature can be very useful at locating great entries if this strategy is utilized.
Holly’s win average has increased to approximately 53.7%, as the artificial intelligence system “learning and replaying the market” each night, has only left her more informed and better prepared with each day that passes. As more time carries on, chances are this win rate will only increase as the trend has shown. The net return of the Trade Ideas’ simulated portfolio for 2017 for Q1 and Q2 ending June 30 was 22% after commissions in Risk-Off mode. These results were achieved by the company’s A.I. powered, Investment Discovery Engine, ‘Holly.’ The portfolio’s gross return before commissions and fees measured 39%. These results compare to the S&P 500, measured by the $SPY index, which earned an 8.2% return over the same period. Risk-Off performance reflects a strict adherence to Reward and Risk targets for each trade. Actions are not deviated from original trade plan rules regardless of initial positive performance; however, positions may be exited earlier if existing profits erode significantly. This mode is meant to conservatively portray HOLLY performance results.
Holly’s performance in Risk-On mode, where a trade idea’s positive performance affects the decision to go beyond Reward targets (without, however, extending beyond the Market Close), stands at 26% after commission and fees. Taking the best possible scenario, a summation of all the correct decisions on whether to apply Risk-Off and Risk-On modes yielded a whopping 72% return after commissions and fees.
Alert Windows and Cloud Feature
Aside from the Channel Bar and channels listed above, there are a lot of other features within Trade Ideas that you don’t realize are there when you first begin to use the software. For instance, the system is cloud-based. Once you have strategies or alert windows that work well for you, you can share them with any other Trade Ideas user by just by offering up a link. Likewise, they can share a link to a strategy or alert window with you. It’s as simple as “File —> load from cloud” and put in the link. Once complete, their strategy/alert window will pop up and you can save it on your system. The video below demonstrates this feature.
Below is the same alert window (SPY Watcher) but customized and configured to follow $DWTI.
Related reading: Shared Trade Ideas Alerts and Layouts
Trade Ideas Review – Backtesting with the OddsMaker
This is where the Trade Ideas Review takes on a whole new form. You can create your own strategies and backtest them to death to find flaws. Tweak it here, tweak it there, and test it again. The OddsMaker is fast and powerful. There’s no programming or scripting knowledge needed – any of your Trade Ideas strategies can be tested and improved in a few minutes. Select the strategy window to test, set the entry/exit/hold conditions, and run the OddsMaker. The bulk of the computations are done on Trade Ideas’ servers, so you get results quickly. All strategy refinements are accomplished using the same configuration window Trade Ideas clients use to configure alert windows.
Below is a great video demonstrating how to access and utilize the Oddsmaker backtesting feature on Trade Ideas.
A New Wave
As most of you likely already know “Artificial Intelligence,” or “A.I.” is rapidly becoming a preferred method of trading for many traders throughout the globe. No? Then surely you have heard the term “algos.” Brokers and Institutions are still the heavy users at the moment, using anything from “Robo-Advisors” to “Robo-traders.” Just last summer, the Chicago Mercantile Exchange Group closed most of it’s old-school trading pits after 167 years of operation. The old way of traders yelling at each other and using their hand signals to buy and sell has become outdated. The order process they carried out on behalf of so many has been replaced with… wait for it… artificial intelligence-based computers.
The headlines below paint the picture. Whether we like it or not, A.I. has become a major player and valuable tool to the many who utilize it. From financial institutions and hedge funds to major companies in automotive, tech, and even social media are investing billions (with a “B”) in the power of artificial intelligence.
Many believe a “revolution” is coming involving artificial intelligence. Not sure if that means a Matrix-style takeover, or…? Though I can’t speak on that, I will say that as a knowledgeable trader of the markets, I am genuinely impressed with A.I. technology as a tool for financial trading.
From alert windows that find stocks with institutional grade buy/sell pressure, to social media combing and the “statistically perfect” artificial intelligence computer named “Holly” that you can trade along side, Trade Ideas has a little something for every style of trader.
If you have questions beyond what has been covered in this Trade Ideas Review, they hold a weekly webinar with product demo/Q&A that is free and open to the public. I highly suggest you register.
In the end, I’m genuinely impressed, and a little surprised. Based on the marketing behind the product, I expected an A.I. trading robot. I got a lot more. Most of the good stuff I never knew about until I tried it myself. Now, I see the value and potential with some fine tuning.
With all of this information out on the table, I will say that the only two paid subscription products that I use and would recommend to any trader are TradingView.com Pro Membership (for the best charting software available anywhere) and Trade Ideas (for the everything mentioned above). The A.I. license that comes with the Holly A.I. channel, Oddsmaker, Custom Alert Windows and 2 custom made strategies is available for an additional fee as mentioned before. Make no mistake, the monthly fee for such a tool is worth every penny. If you have the means, I highly recommend. If you have a smaller account, perhaps something to works towards once you have some cash to play with. Again, in a world where people pay comparable fees for access to a simple chatroom, that money can get you a lot more using this software.
If interested, I was able to get Dan to agree to a 15% discount to all TraderMentality.com readers.
Go to Trade-Ideas.com and use promo code TRADERM15 for a 15% discount.
As for our original conversation, check out my interview with Dan Mirkin.