Stock Predictor is a stock charting and investment strategy backtesting program geared for technical analysts. The program provides buy, hold, avoid and sell recommendations for individual stocks, charts them with a variety of technical indicators, and maintains a database of historical prices. Even though Stock Predictor does not provide real-time quotes, it does not charge for server connection or historical data because it uses free data servers. Users can choose between MSN Money, Google Finance or Yahoo! Finance.
The program’s primary selling point is its backtesting feature, which allows users to create and apply trading strategies and analyze their performance over a historical set of data. Investors can then optimize their investment strategies. Backtesting is a remarkable tool; however, it is not perfect by any means and relying on it has its own risks. The basic problem with backtesting is that historical performance generally has little correlation with future performance. That said, having the backtest results on your side can be a comfort.
The Companies tab is where users will find their active list of companies and the program’s predictions for them. Next to the company name, there will be a buy, hold, avoid, or sell prediction that users may consider when researching potential investments. Selecting a company will display its chart with the default settings and any buy/sell markers specific to that company. To see more information about a company, such as its 52-week performance, right-click on the company and select “Extended Info for [Ticker].”
After creating an active list of companies, users can test various investment strategies against one company or all of them by going to the Strategies tab. Choosing a strategy from the dropdown menu will display its description, allow users to adjust its parameters, and run it against one company or all of the companies in the active list. After running the strategy, buy/sell markers will be automatically added to the chart to reflect the investing strategy. To see these in greater detail, select the Trading History tab located above the chart. Here users will see when the trigger was hit, the stock’s price, and the gains since the previous signal. At the bottom of this tab is the Statistics window, which summarizes the strategy’s performance for a particular stock and allows users to adjust its trading date range, stating capital, and the broker’s commission. To get the same detailed report for all of the companies in the list, go to the Report tab on the toolbar and select Strategy Report.
The program also allows users to combine strategies and record their own buys and sells on a company’s chart. However, only two strategies can be combined at a time and the program requires a sell before another buy can be registered. In other words, the program does not allow users to reiterate buy ratings or record more purchases on a graph without selling first. This will potentially limit the upside of a strategy and exacerbate the downside for investors who prefer incremental moves, i.e., buying and selling a little at a time.
Stock Predictor is a decent program for those who would like a relatively inexpensive way to backtest strategies. The program also provides a good help guide, which makes it easy to learn.
Ashkon Software LLC
System Requirements: Windows 2000/XP/Vista/2003/7
Size: 11.2 MB
Price: $295; free 10-day trial