NinjaTrader Trading Platform

NinjaTrader LLC is a proprietary trading platform, built by US-based firm NinjaTrader LLC for the retail forex market segment. NinjaTrader LLC launched its latest version (NinjaTrader 8) in November 2016. As a platform primarily designed to serve the US markets, NinjaTrader has been modified to suit the requirements of the National Futures Association (NFA) for all dealer member platforms.

The NinjaTrader8 forex platform is presently offered to the public by several forex brokers that primarily serve the US and UK markets. Examples are:

  1. GAIN Capital LLC (owners of Forex.com)
  2. FXCM UK
  3. Interactive Brokers
  4. TD Ameritrade

NinjaTrader8 comes in two versions:

1) Traders who want to run simulation trading, or who simply want access to charts and tools for technical analysis can use the free version of NinjaTrader8.

2) The paid version of NinjaTrader8 comes with a full package. It is available for a monthly fee. There is also an option to get the platform outright purchase.

How to Get Access to the NinjaTrader8 Platform

Obtain the free and paid versions of NinjaTrader8 as follows:

Free version: Download the executable file from the NinjaTrader website by filling a short registration form. This process is not the full account opening process which requires some financial disclosures by the client. This is because the free version of NinjaTrader8 is only used for demo trading. After filling the form, login details as well as the demo server details (which indicates the broker feed to be used) will be sent to the trader’s email address. Unpack the downloaded executable file in the setup process to install and run the platform. You can access the platform by selecting the server, then entering the login details in the appropriate boxes.

Paid version: You can own the NinjaTrader8 platform outright. Choose a NinjaTrader broker and pay the sum of $999 for a lifetime license, or pay $299 in four monthly installments to own NinjaTrader and get free updates for life.

There is also the option of leasing the platform. Under the lease arrangement, the user can pay $600 a year, $330 twice a year or $180 per quarter. At any time, the lifetime license can be acquired by paying the differential.

The NinjaTrader8 platform comes in two versions:

  • NinjaTrader downloadable desktop client
  • NinjaTrader web trader.

The discussion here will focus on the NinjaTrader8 downloadable platform.

NinjaTrader Installation Guide

The NinjaTrader8 platform can be downloaded from the website after filling a short online form. Download the setup file, then Run it and enable the installation. Adjust the firewall settings and allow your computer to access the NinjaTrader8 file for installation.

Live Trading Activation

The demo platform has a “Buy Platform” function which can be used to pay for the paid version of NinjaTrader8. The paid versions are used for real money trading. You can secure your platform’s license key from any of the brokers that offer NinjaTrader8.

The NinjaTrader Connection Guide will guide you on the setup process which will enable you to connect to live market price feeds and also get access to other important price data such as updated charts.

Chart Interface

The snapshot below shows what the interface of the NinjaTrader8 platform looks like. The various tools that are available for the trader to use are shown. Most of the other functions that are required for the trading experience can be activated using these buttons shown on the interface.

How to Trade with NinjaTrader

In this section, we shall describe some key functions that all traders using the NinjaTrader8 platform need to be familiar with.

New Chart

The NinjaTrader8 platform features several assets in different asset classes: stocks, currencies, CFDs, etc. Trading starts with the selection of the asset to trade, and asset selection goes with the selection of a new chart.

To open a New Chart, click on New -> Chart -> Select -> Select asset from drop-down menu, then click OK.

Chart Properties

Charts have various properties and these can all be set by the trader. There are default settings as well. Here are some of the chart settings that can be adjusted by the trader.

The main chart characteristics are:

  • Data series
  • Time frames
  • Chart styles
  • Visuals

Each of these chart metrics has a submenu which indicates items that can be adjusted on the chart according to the user’s preferences.

Opening Postitions

The chart interface has facilities which can be used to open new orders in the market. This is done using the Chart Trader function. To use this, click on “Chart Trader” (see snapshot of interface above), then make sure you unhide it. This displays the entry order parameters on the side of the chart you want to trade.

On the chart window shown below, we can see the trade parameters displayed on the right hand side of the chart. In this case, the Buy Market function (Buy Mkt) has been used to initiate an immediate Buy entry position on the GBPUSD at market price. This is done by clicking the Buy Mkt button. This opens up a small dialog box which is a confirmation box for the trade. The trader may confirm the order by clicking OK, or may reject the order by clicking NO. There is also the option of disabling the confirmation box option, in which case the “One Click” trade function is activated.

Selecting Indicators

Traders who want to perform technical analysis on the charts can select indicators and apply them on charts. On an active chart, right-click on the chart with your mouse button, then select “Indicators” on the drop-down menu that is displayed. You can also click on Ctrl + I to activate this function. Another drop down menu is displayed containing an alphabetically-arranged list of indicators. Scroll up and down the list to select an indicator.

Selecting Chart Tools

The trader can also select other tools of technical analysis aside indicators. An example is the trend line tool or the Fibonacci tools, which are shown in this dropdown menu:

To access this pane, right-click on the asset chart, then scroll down on the menu that displays on the page to “Drawing Tools”. A side menu opens up, which displays the various tools that could be used.

Conclusion

The NinjaTrader8 platform will take some exploration to fully understand how to use it. Beginners will not find this platform easy to adapt to, but with enough practice, some of the basic trade functions can be learned pretty quickly and built upon to provide an optimal trade experience.