What is Systematic Trading?

Systematic trading is based on the premise of automated rules-based strategiesi usually generated from a computerized model (algorithms), offer a probability-based predictive view of the markets constructed from backtesting historical data.

How Does Systematic Trading Differ from Systematic Risk?

Systematic trading is a structured method of trading. Systematic risk also known as market risk relates to a portfolio’s “market” exposure frequently measured by beta.ii

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What Kind of Data Does Systematic Trading Analyze?

Systematic trading analyzes data to generate entry and exit signals. The signals could be a single moment of trade execution (the entire trade is executed at one time) or it could be multiple signals as the strategy enters or exits positions over a given period.

How Long Can Systematic Trading Positions Be Held?

The duration of holding positions may be from intra-day to several months.


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When Did Systematic Trading Become Popular?

The concept of rules-based trading systems are not recent concepts derived for computers, but instead, technology embraced an age-old trading methodology. The equity markets can easily trace rules-based trading back to the 1880s original Dow Theory.iii

What Are Key Characteristics of a Systematic Trading Strategy?

Conditions: Systematic strategies are considered conditional models because they require specified conditions or criteria to appear in the input data for a signal to be generated. The systematic models may be based on technical analysis/ quantitative or quantifying fundamental data sometimes known as “quantamental” to generate signals.iv

How Is Risk Management Considered in Systematic Trading?

These systems frequently incorporate risk management controls that may include stop-loss orders, profit targets and/or adjusting position size.

Is Systematic Trading Available Through All Asset Classes?

A rules-based trading system may be applied to most asset classes and allows a fund manager to trade multiple markets simultaneously offering potential opportunities to diversify their fund’s portfolio. Managed futures funds are often perceived as systematic trading. However, some managed futures strategies are discretionary. Systematic traders have the largest proportion of assets under management in managed futures.v

What are Key Advantages to Systematic Trading?

Some of the benefits of systematic trading involve the ability to backtest the system on any past data to determine its potential robustness in various market environments. Systematic trading usually removes the day-to-day human interaction and behavioral biases that strengthen strategy discipline, but trading systems are designed by a person or group of people, integrating their risk management and markets perspective.

What are Key Disadvantages to Systematic Trading?

The disadvantage may include increased frequency of false signals when the system does not function as designed in some market environments.

Where Can I See a List of Systematic Trading Strategies by CTAs?

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Where can I learn more about the Systematic Trading Methodology?

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