TradeStation

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TradeStation
Subsidiary
Industry Brokerage
Founded 1982 (TradeStation formed as Omega Research, Inc.)[1]
Headquarters Plantation, Florida, USA, Florida, United States
Key people
Salomon Sredni,
President & CEO[2]
Products Stocks & ETFs, Options, Futures & Forex
Parent Monex Group
Website www.tradestation.com

TradeStation (formally TradeStation Securities) is an online brokerage company based in Plantation, Florida. Best known for its TradeStation analysis software and electronic trading platform which it provides to active trader and certain institutional trader markets. The TradeStation platform features electronic order execution and enables clients to design, test, optimize, monitor, and automate their own custom equities, options, futures and forex trading strategies.[3][4] The company has been a subsidiary of Japan's Monex Group since 2011.

History[edit]

Two trained classical violinists, brothers William (Bill) and Rafael Cruz, came from Cuba to United States with a dream to provide a way to design, test, optimize, and automate their own custom equities to control one's financial future. This dream led to the development of TradeStation. Bill was 16 when he start studying trading. Two years later, the brothers pooled $2400 into a futures account to trade pork bellies. They gathered pork belly data to make charts, which they used to test ideas. In college, Bill met Kip Irvine, a music major with a minor in computers. Bill agreed to play Irvine’s compositions if Irvine helped him automate his trading strategy analysis. This took more time than desired, so Bill decided to test his strategies himself without coding knowledge. This was the start of the development of EasyLanguage.

Bill and Ralph decided to start a their own company and began hiring talented people to program software. The original development team included Irvine, Sam Tennis, Peter Parandjuk, and Liren Ji, with Ruben Triana and Darla Tuttle in product management. The Cruz brothers discovered that the real opportunity was in selling non-technical clients the tools to program and test their own strategies. In 1987, they released System Writer, which was programmed to process one bar at a time and variables were assigned past values based on previous bars with bar 0 being the current bar. Users were allowed to write their own functions to extend the product on a personal level and develop unique trading ideas. While this company, then called Omega Research, had a bright future, it also had a rough beginning. This was because most people did not know this product existed or what it offered. Backtesting indicated what did not work in the past, which was not a guarantee of future results. However, if a system did not backtest well, it was guaranteed to not work in the future. Once the value of backtesting was realized, System Writer was the only viable option. System Writer Plus was released with new and innovative charting features in 1989. Bruce Babcock of Commodity Trader Consumer Reports (CTCR) said in his 1989 review: “System Writer is the system trading software equivalent of putting a man on the moon.”[5]

In 1991, Omega Research was reborn as TradeStation. TradeStation added intra-day analysis and a real-time element. The next major breakthrough came in 1993, when the Reuters Group approached the Cruz brothers to buy them out. Bill and Ralph weren't interested in selling but they would license it, which Reuters refused. A few years later, Bill and Ralph made a licensing deal with Dow Jones Telerate. TradeStation was launched as a premium service to institutional clients in 1996. That same year, Salomon Sredni joined the company as Vice President of Operations. In 1997, Omega Research went public and was officially renamed TradeStation. TradeStation launched an online version to deliver data over the Internet in 1999. Delivering data over the Internet instead of a satellite dish was a major competitive advantage for the company. In 2001, TradeStation 6.0 added real-time execution and brought short-term intraday trading off the floor. Retail traders now able to day-trade from their desktops. Also in 2001, the company launched TradeStation Securities, a stock brokerage firm. The testing, order generation, and native execution were fully integrated in 2003 with TradeStation 7.0. Forex analytics followed, and then TradeStation 8.0 added options execution. In 2005, TradeStation became a self-clearing options firm. A third-party solution provider network also helped to TradeStation to grow. Managed by Tuttle, the network featured dozens of professional programmers who expanded the capability of TradeStation and its sister applications. An entire industry grew up around the software, including seminars, publications, and user networks. It all contributed to the penetration and success of TradeStation. The Cruz brothers retired from the company in 2007, and Sredni was promoted to CEO.[6]

  • 1982 - Company is formed under the name Omega Research, Inc.
  • 1989 - System Writer, a trading strategy software application, is launched.
  • 1991 - TradeStation, the company's flagship product, is launched.
  • 1992 - SuperCharts, a charting and analytics software application, is launched.
  • 1994 - Telerate agrees to offer TradeStation as a service to its institutional customers worldwide and launches the service in 1996
  • 1996 - OptionStation, an options trading analytics product that enables traders to explore complex trading strategies, is launched.
  • 1997 - The company does an Initial public offering (IPO) and is listed on Nasdaq
  • 1999 - RadarScreen, a software application that enables traders to scan up to thousands of securities to identify buy and sell opportunities based on the trader's criteria, is launched.
  • 1999 - The company acquires Window On WallStreet and in 2000 launches WindowOnWallStreet.com, the company's first Internet-based charting and analytics service.
  • 2000 - TradeStation 6, the Internet-based trading platform that is to serve as the foundation of the company's direct-access brokerage service, is launched.
  • 2000 - The company acquires a direct-access securities brokerage, Onlinetrading.com, which is subsequently renamed TradeStation Securities.
  • 2001 - Trading symbol for the company's publicly traded common stock is changed from OMGA to TRAD.
  • 2001 - Company launches TradeStation 6 for institutional and active traders, which combines for the first time custom strategy design and testing, automated trading and direct-access execution of stock trades.
  • 2003 - Company launches TradeStation 7, which includes execution of futures trades.
  • 2003 - TradeStation Securities launches forex analytics and execution services.
  • 2004 - Company launches TradeStation 8, which includes execution of options trades.
  • 2005 - The company commences self-clearing of options trades for active traders
  • 2006 - TradeStation Europe Limited receives approval from UKs Financial Services Authority (FSA) as an introducing broker.
  • 2007 - Fundamental data is incorporated into historical database for strategy testing. Integrated Forex execution is launched.
  • 2009 - Launch of TradeStation Prime Services in September 2009
  • 2010 - as of December 31, 2010, TradeStation reports revenue of $129.0 million, net income of $11.4 million, client assets in excess of $2.3 billion with over 47,000 brokerage accounts. The company launch of TradeStation 9.0 and Eurex execution
  • 2011 - TradeStation Group acquired by Japan's Monex Group.[7] The company also launches TradeStation Forex and acquires IBFX Holdings, LLC [8]
  • 2012 - TradeStation releases online web app for trading US Equities in Japan
  • 2013 - Introduces Lower-Priced “Flat Ticket” Commission Pricing for Equities and Options.
  • 2014 - The company entered the Chinese Market through an alliance with Guosen Securities Company Limited, in addition to the Korean Market through an alliance with Shinhan Investment Corp. A new online TradingApp® Store is launched with hundreds of custom products.[8]
  • 2015 - TradeStation ranked Hightest Rated for “Best for Frequent Traders” and “Best for International Traders” by Barron’s, “#1 Platform Technology” and “#1 Desktop Platform” by StockBrokers.com, and “Top Five” Online Broker and #1 for Equity Trading Tools by Investor’s Business Daily.[9]

TradeStation Analysis and Trading Platform[edit]

The TradeStation analysis and trading platform is a professional electronic trading platform for financial market traders. It provides extensive functionality for receiving real-time data, displaying charts, enter orders, and manage outstanding orders and market positions.[10]

Although it comes with a large number of pre-defined indicators, strategy components, and analysis tools, individuals can modify and customize existing indicators and strategies as well as display their own using TradeStation’s proprietary object-oriented EasyLanguage programming language. Traders can also access thousands of software trading products created by independent EasyLanguage developers through TradeStation Strategy Network, as well as access a collection of strategy trading ideas submitted by the TradeStation community in the EasyLanguage Library.

TradeStation supports the development, testing, optimizing, and automation of all aspects of trading. Trading strategies can be back-tested and refined against historical data[11] before being turned on and traded "live." TradeStation can either be used as a research and testing tool or as a trading platform with TradeStation Securities acting as the broker.[3][4]

Corporate Structure[edit]

TradeStation Group, Inc.’s principal operating subsidiaries are TradeStation Securities, Inc., and TradeStation Forex, Inc. TradeStation acquired IBFX Holdings, LLC, in November 2011, expanding TradeStation's forex business in the U.S. and globally. TradeStation is a wholly owned subsidiary of Monex Group, Inc., one of Japan’s largest online financial services providers.

TradeStation Securities, Inc. is a member of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC), National Securities Clearing Corporation (NSCC), Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC), Options Clearing Corporation (OCC) and the National Futures Association (NFA). It is a licensed securities broker-dealer and a registered futures commission merchant, and is also a member of the Boston Options Exchange, Chicago Board Options Exchange, Chicago Stock Exchange, International Securities Exchange and NASDAQ OMX. Its TradeStation Prime Services division, based in New York, seeks to provide prime brokerage services to small and mid-sized hedge funds and other firms. TradeStation Forex, Inc. a Retail Foreign Exchange Dealer (RFED), and IBFX Australia Pty. Ltd., authorized and regulated by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission, provide the company’s forex brokerage offering. The company’s technology subsidiary, TradeStation Technologies, Inc., develops and offers strategy trading software tools and subscription services. Its London-based subsidiary, TradeStation Europe Limited, an Financial Services Authority authorized brokerage firm, introduces UK and other European accounts to TradeStation Securities and TradeStation Forex, Inc.

Monex Group provides online investment and trading services for retail and institutional customers around the world through its subsidiaries, including Monex in Japan, TradeStation in the U.S. and Europe, Monex Boom in Hong Kong, and IBFX for forex business. Monex Group is pursuing its “Global Vision” strategy to establish a truly global online financial institution that creates positive synergies for all stakeholders.

Its main subsidiary, Monex Inc., one of Japan’s largest online securities brokerages, provides advanced and unique financial services to its nearly 1 million individual investors. Monex Group’s services also cover M&A advisory, debt and equity underwriting, asset management focusing on alternative investments, investment education, and other investment banking functions in Japan.

Add-ons[edit]

A large number of third-party developers sell add-on extensions for TradeStation. Since TradeStation is a development platform, a custom trading program can be developed called a trading system or trading strategy. If any trader has an analysis technique or potentially profitable strategy he would like to have developed, he can either write his own strategy in EasyLanguage or have his trading system developed by third-party developers. Traders can also take advantage of TradeStation Strategy Network, an online marketplace of ready-to-use add-on products built to run on the TradeStation platform by independent developers.

TradeStation WebAPI[edit]

The TradeStation WebAPI is a RESTful application programming interface that is used to power applications like the TradeStation iOS app, WebTrading, and more. Third-party developers can also build stand-alone applications or integrate key benefits from TradeStation into their existing systems using any programming language that can make HTTP requests and receive HTTP responses.

Software versions[edit]

Version 5 was called TradeStation 2000i and could use a variety of different real-time data feeds; although officially it is no longer supported, it is still used by traders wishing to work with real-time non-U.S. data. Support for TradeStation 5.0 alias 2000i was closed 31 December 2003 Announce link.

Version 4 of TradeStation was 16 bit software and is now no longer used.

Industry Awards and Rankings[edit]

TradeStation earned three stars and finished fourteenth overall in the StockBrokers.com 2011 Online Broker Review.[12] In 2012, they earned four stars and a ninth place finish, also being awarded for Best Platform Technology.[13] For 2013, TradeStation moved down, earning three stars, a thirteenth place finish, and once again took Best Platform Technology.[14] In 2014, TradeStation ended in fourteenth place with a three star rating and were awarded #1 for Platform Technology for the third year running.[15]

In 2012, Barron's awarded TradeStation a fourth overall ranking of 4 ½ stars in the review of online brokers [16]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]