Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Survey Results - Mechanical Traders

Taken as a group, people who identify themselves as 100% mechanical traders are more profitable than either pure discretionary or hybrid traders.

Only 27% of pure discretionary traders reported that they were profitable the last 3 years.  The number jumps to 43% for hybrid traders, and then jumps again to 55% for mechanical traders.

So, according to this survey, you are twice as likely to be profitable if you are 100% mechanical, as opposed to 100% discretionary.

The other interesting point here is that mechanical traders who backtest for more than 1 year tend to be more profitable.  Not surprising to me, but hopefully it is enlightening to those traders out there who feel long backtests are pointless.


  1. Hi Kevin, thanks for sharing results. What was the sample size of this survey/how many participants?

  2. Hi MBA -

    There were over 150 responses. Not sure it would pass all tests for statistical significance, so there definitely is some margin for error here.