From the May 2013 issue of Futures Magazine • Subscribe!

Cyborg Trader Pro

Cyborg Trader Pro
Cyborg Trading Systems
Supported Platforms: Sterling Trader Pro, Interactive Brokers and X_Trader Pro
Pricing: $250/month - $350/month

Overall Rating: 4 out of 4

In the world of finance, particularly trading, software engineers work long and hard in pushing the envelope to develop cutting-edge tools and resources to help traders gain a competitive edge in trading. It takes an incredibly high level of commitment to refine those tools to make the complex simple and functional for the benefit of the end user.

Automated trading platforms have been limited in both function and design; but if you took a trader who happened to be an engineer, then you might have something different, even groundbreaking.

“We are traders who happen to be engineers, and who heard the frustrations of traders at every level — retail, beginner, floor trader, institutional trader –and developed the trading technology that we would want to trade ourselves,“ says Jamie Oschefski, sales director for Cyborg Trading Systems (CTS).

CTS develops automated trading technology for financial firms. Their core focus is to simplify and expedite the development and implementation of complex automated trading strategies. In a realm of “me too” technology, CTS is an anomaly.

Download and installation

When first downloading CTS’ software to access the trading platform, you’ll be surprised at the flexibility and ease of navigating its functionality. CTS provides an intuitive point-and-click interface with drop- down menus and combo-boxes for a visual strategy development. In addition, you have the ability to use a full-fledged API in C# where you can build your own proprietary signals while leveraging the already proven execution and trade management sophistication offered in Cyborg.

However, what impressed me a great deal is that CTS includes an Excel Integration for traders who have some programming knowledge using Excel in developing their own trading strategies as well as API access for C+ programming. 

CTS has world-class support and a vast resource of educational tools, along with video tutorials, to help you navigate your way through its features while holding your hand along the way if you need it, so that you can squeeze every last drop of benefit from their technology.

“We built everything from a trader’s mindset, not an engineer’s mindset,” says Oschefski, “This drastically reduces the learning curve.”

Product test-drive

I decided to test CTS’s platform using a simple and reliable breakout method involving all-time price highs but utilizing split-orders – one at the time of the breakout and the other as price rose 10% to test how CTS would scale into a position while still controlling risk on the parameters that I set.

I first opened Cyborg’s toolbar manager on my desktop. At first glance, you’ll notice how simple the layout is — designed for simplicity utilizing a drop-tree structure so that you can easily point-and-click the various branches.

CTS allows you to create “Trigger Complexes” made up of custom rules for predefined conditions that you establish for smart-entries. As an initial experiment, I clicked the Puzzle icon on the toolbar and named the trigger “Breakout All-Time High.” Then, I had to set the breakout allocation for the entry and I divided it into two separate entries. The first entry would be 50% of my capital allocation based on 20% of my trade capital, which translated into 10% on this initial entry, and the second entry would be the remaining 50% of my allocation as price rose 10% from its initial breakout in order to pyramid into a position that I named “All-Time High Pyramid.”

Appearing to the right of the screen is the Market Offset feature, which allows me to set an offset of how far price can move from the initial entry point by selecting a price or percent offset. I selected a price offset of 5, which would allow price to move 5 cents beyond my trigger before abandoning the trade.

Now, there is an Advanced Option feature that appears just below the Offset feature that allows you a whole new set of Smart Technology features to further refine the parameters for your Trigger Complex rules as well as Order Specification, but I ignored these for this initial test, opting to keep it simple for now.

At this point, I want to add that I was referring to the video tutorials by CTS as I was setting up my parameters for my Trigger Complexes, and always felt comfortable as they guided me through this process. If they didn’t, CTS has solid support that included the ability to chat online and hold my hand as I worked my way through this setup phase.

I saved my settings for the breakout triggers, inputted a selection of stocks to trade with the parameters that I had just created and stood back to watch as the platform executed my entry instructions flawlessly with pinpoint precision and breathtaking speed.

For this initial run, I decided to let CTS’ platform focus on my entries while I focused on setting up the rules correctly, but the technology allows you set up custom rules for trailing stops and risk management as well.

Admittedly, considering the possibilities of the technology, this was a pretty crude test, but the ease of its implementation was still incredible to experience. More so when you consider that you can trade across markets, risk parameters, breakouts, trends, counter-trends, profit targets and more, all with the goal of smooth integration across styles and boundaries to lower risk and achieve greater trade equity growth.

If successful trading is a combination of what works while maintaining a distinct competitive advantage over other traders, then CTS personifies that key trading in large part by being designed by traders for traders instead of just being designed by engineers for traders.

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