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July 3, 2023 at 12:09 #56801aaronpriestParticipant
I’ve decided to attempt the FTMO Challenge, and I’d like to do it with no other tools but EA Studio, just to prove if it can be done. 😉 I decided to document my journey here, successes and failures (because it might take a few attempts!), and also get some advice and input along the way if folks want to chime in or even try it with me.
The objectives are here: https://ftmo.com/en/#objectives For a brief summary, here are the goals (for a normal risk account):
- 10% profit target in 30 days
- 10% maximum loss in 30 days
- 5% maximum daily loss
- Minimum of 10 trading days
- No trading weekends or Sundays
- All trades must be closed before end of Friday each week, no open trades over the weekend
- No trading during 3 bull news 2 minutes before or 2 minutes after (this is problematic for EA trading),
calender of restricted events is here: https://ftmo.com/en/calendar/
- Ideally no higher than 1.5% risk per trade, because other competitions that follow similar rules also include this one, although I don’t think FTMO has this particular rule
So, that’s a pretty tough challenge! If you pass it, the requirement to hit 10% profit in a month is lifted, but the others are still in effect to maintain your account, so you can lower your risk per trade substantially for the long term with real money.
Here are my current frustrations that I’m trying to work around:
- I signed up with a free demo first of course, before attempting the real challenge. They give you a demo $50K MT4 account with a broker called FFTraderSRO. The maximum amount of history for every currency pair and timeframe is about 16 days, and they can’t give you any more history (I asked). The demo is only good for 14 days too, so you can’t wait to gather more data. This of course makes EA generation frustrating. I downloaded DukasCopy history and decided to go for M15 timeframe. I also downloaded what data I could from FFTrader. I went to Symbol settings and attempted to get DukasCopy to match by entering the spread, swap day, swap long, swap short, commission, etc. But so far I’m not getting anywhere near the same results with MT4 backtesting vs. EA Studio (limiting the dates to the same range of course). How do you handle generating EAs for multiple brokers that have different history?
- The main symbols are AUDUSD, EURUSD, GBPUSD, NZDUSD, USDCAD, USDCHF, USDJPY, XAGUSD, and XAUUSD. There are many others, but they all have a .lmax afterward and I assume that means these trades would get copied to an account with LMAX. This may be the key for me to solving my first problem. Maybe I can download more history from LMAX and trade the *.lmax symbols on FFTrader instead and get better results. I haven’t had time to test this yet. It would also solve the risk of having too many currencies that are all USD.
- There is no way to set an investor password on the demo account, however you can work around that with FX Blue by using their MT4 EA on a chart to sync instead.
- I’m really struggling to get enough quality EAs generated in 3-4 days. I have a pretty fast 7700K that is liquid cooled and overclocked to 5.2GHz, but it’s only 4 cores (8 threads with hyperthreading). If I go for less stringent requirements, I don’t get very good EAs, even if I get quite a few that pass Monte Carlo. If I go for more strict ones and add Walk Forward optimization as well, then I’m waiting 24hrs or more for a single EA, but 3-4 of them make a really nice looking portfolio. I really want to get 10 or more really good EAs though. Here are my current settings:
- I’m just not getting anything with those above settings yet. I got a few EAs per pair with less stringent requirements, and also added walk forward optimization to them before Monte Carlo, but they failed miserably on the 2 weeks or so of backtesting I could do on FFTrader. I’ll leave the reactor running a few more days. My demo will expire before I even start anything with FTMO on this round, LOL! It will take me a month to generate enough quality EAs with what I thought was a fast computer. But at least I’ve got a glimpse into the broker and some ideas to try LMAX as a demo broker with hopefully more history before requesting another demo with FTMO. Maybe there is a better way to use EAs that Petko has already generated instead of making my own? What do you have for a CPU Petko? Probably more than 4 cores?
- Is there any way to automate pausing or stopping EAs during specific time periods? There are times I’m traveling or working and I’d have to have all EAs paused for 2-3 days before I would get a chance to start them again, just to avoid 2 minutes before or after a critical news time when I can’t be at the computer or remote into it–or risk being disqualified for a trade opening or closing at that critical moment. FTMO has an EA that can close out all open trades at specific time frames, like 5 minutes before an event, but that seems even more brutal with greater potential losses. I’d rather just pause EAs and resume at specific times and automate that in advance, rather than close open or pending trades.
Happy to have any suggestions or feedback! Has anyone else attempted this, and what was your experience?
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