How to Create And Test a Trading Strategy, Part III

by Mark Williams on February 4, 2009


You’ve thought out your idea, fleshed it out, got a flowchart and summary going, now, it is time to create get your strategy created and backtested.

But, how do you go about getting the strategy created?

Well, there are two ways to go about this.

The first way, which is the HARDEST, is to code your strategy itself.

The second way is to hire someone to do it for you.

Let’s go over the second way in more detail today.

First, you need to know a little bit about your platform. What I mean by this, is what type of coding language does it use.

There are many languages out there that the more robust trading platforms use, but the MAJOR ones are EasyLanguage, Java, C++ and C# (C sharp).

Once you have this information, and armed with your flowchart and work summary, you can hire someone you know who is a programmer, or outsource this code to an outsourcing site.

I recommend the following sites:



Of the three, Rent-A-Coder has been the cheapest to use, but Elance has many protections in place in case someone tries to rip you off (although both rent-a-coder and Guru have come a long way in this regard)

These sites work like a reverse eBay. You state your project, your time line, and milestones, and people from all over the world will send out bids for the work. Then, you choose the price and person that you like, and you go from there.

Each site allows you to setup an escrow account that you can then use to pay the person, per milestone.

Now, if you believe that you have found the holy grail of all strategies, and you don’t want to people to find out about, you do not have to put up all the details of your project. However, having the flowchart handy and the written summary will help out the programmer who takes the assignment immensely

Also — and this may be the GREATEST piece of information you will EVER get from this site — DO NOT EVER go for the lowest bidder. End of story. Don’t do it, Don’t do it, Don’t do it, or you WILL get screwed over GUARANTEED!!!

Another piece of advice, and it’s a little tricky thing to do, it, at the end or at the beginning of your auction ad, write something along the lines of “This should be a cinch/really easy/piece of pie for someone who is versed/skilled in/got skills in/knows about/is an expert in <enter your trading platform or computer language of choice here>”

Example: “This should be a piece of cake for anyone who has made indicators and strategies before in NinjaTrader!”

I don’t know why (and I have tested this), but this statement has caused everyone bidding on my projects to drop the price of their bids BIG TIME!

Don’t ask me why it works, or why people even go for it, but it does.

Next, we will go over what you can do if you want to program the strategy yourself.

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 KateNo Gravatar 02.09.09 at 5:19 pm

Elance, rentacoder & guru are great resources for hiring programmers, but there are also professional organizations that offer these types of services that might be a better option for large scale projects. I have had very good experiences with 1st Custom Software. And they have a great article about hiring contractors for these types of services.

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