Keeping a trading journal is a good way for traders to keep track of their trades and improve their profitability over time. With a trading journal, you can identify patterns of success in your trading and draw lessons from your mistakes to avoid repeating them in the future.
In this guide, we’ll explain why you need a trading journal and highlight the six best trading journals for 2022.
What is a Trading Journal?
A trading journal is a diary of your trades. It can be written down or digital.
Importantly, a trading journal should do more than simply record trades’ entry and exit points and performance, as most brokerage platforms keep track of these details for you. A good trading journal will include notes on what strategy a trade was based on, your thoughts going into and during the trade, and other details that are relevant to your trading style.
Why You Should Use a Trading Journal
Using a trading journal is one of the best ways to improve your consistency and profitability as a trader. By keeping meticulous notes on your trades, you can see which of your trading strategies is most successful, which setups consistently yield profits, and even what times of day you typically trade most successfully.
Over time, you can use a trading journal to identify your best and worst-performing strategies and adjust your trading accordingly. You can also use a trading journal to measure the impacts of these adjustments, ensuring that any changes you make actually lead to measurable improvements in your profitability.
The 6 Best Trading Journals
While you can keep a trading journal manually, there are plenty of software platforms that automate the journaling process and make it easier to analyze patterns in your trading. Let’s take a closer look at the six best trading journal platforms for 2022.
TraderVue – Best Overall Trading Journal
TraderVue is a comprehensive digital trading journal that supports stock, options, futures, and forex trading. TraderVue can import trade data automatically from most major brokerages and enables you to tag each trade based on setup, strategy, or any other custom labels you create. When analyzing trades, you can filter based on these tags or on ticker symbols, trade duration, a set of dates, and more.
TraderVue offers a wide range of reports to analyze your trading performance over time. In addition to basic profit and loss charts, you can measure your liquidity, and risk-adjusted performance as well as directly compare performance across individual date ranges or ticker symbols. TraderVue also has a built-in community so you can share your trade data and learn from others.
TraderVue offers a free plan that lets you add up to 30 trades per month and includes limited customization and analysis options. Paid plans start at $29 per month.
TraderSync – Most Feature-rich Trading Journal
TraderSync is a modern trading journal platform with a lot to offer. In addition to keeping track of notes and custom tags, TraderSync enables you to display entry and exit points and stop loss and profit target levels right on your charts for every trade. You can also add screenshots from your trading platform and take notes on the go with mobile apps for iOS and Android devices.
TraderSync offers exceptional analysis tools, with 10 built-in report types and many ways to filter your trade data based on date, ticker, performance, setup, and more. The platform even uses artificial intelligence to analyze your trade data and suggest strategies, trading hours, or asset classes that work best for you. You can also simulate what your overall performance might look like if you change some aspects of your strategy or focus only on specific setups.
TraderSync starts at $29.95 per month. You can try out the platform free for seven days.
Chartlog – Best Charting Tools
Chartlog is unique among trading journals in that the platform has advanced charting tools from TradingView built-in. This enables the platform to automatically tag trades and setups based on strategies and indicators available within TradingView. For traders who already use TradingView as their primary charting platform, this can be a significant advantage.
Chartlog can import data automatically from most major brokerages and enables you to take notes on any of your trades. It also offers plenty of ways to filter and analyze your trade data, including risk-adjusted performance reports. Just note that you need a top-tier Pro subscription to analyze trades by date range, duration, asset type, or tag combinations.
Chartlog starts at $14.99 per month. The Pro plan, which includes all journal analysis tools, costs $39.99 per month.
Edgewonk – Best Desktop Platform
Edgewonk offers a customizable desktop journaling software in addition to a web platform and mobile apps for iOS and Android devices. The desktop platform is especially nice because you can customize its look and layout so that the key trade data you need is available at a glance.
Edgewonk also has several tools that help this platform stand out. The strategy backtester enables you to simulate “what if” scenarios and see how they would have performed relative to your actual trades. An optimization module runs future simulations so you can visualize possible ranges of factors like account drawdown and profitability. In addition, Edgewonk enables you to keep multiple journals, so you can have different datasets for each of your trading accounts.
Edgewonk offers a single subscription tier that costs $169 per year.
Profit.ly – Best Trading Community
Profit.ly is a community-based trading platform founded by trader Timothy Sykes. It makes trade data from all users on the platform public by default and offers a leaderboard so you can easily find top-performing traders. The platform’s aim is to enable traders to learn from one another, and particularly from highly successful traders.
To help achieve this, Profit.ly also offers trading chat rooms run by “guru” traders. You can see what trades each guru is making in real-time and ask questions to learn more about the strategies in play.
Profit.ly offers analysis tools so you can track your own performance and see how your trading improves over time. However, the analysis tools aren’t as customizable as they are with dedicated journaling software.
Profit.ly plans start at $29.95 per month.
Trademetria – Best for Trading a Wide Range of Assets
Trademetria is an all-in-one investment research platform, charting software, and trade journal. It offers a wide range of trade tracking features, including the ability to annotate charts, upload screenshots from your trading platform, and create your own custom tags. Trademetria offers in-depth analysis tools, and you can even filter your performance based on the performance of major market indices.
What’s especially nice about Trademetria is that it works with almost any type of asset you can trade. The platform supports stocks, options, forex, futures, CFDs, and cryptocurrencies, and you can import data from up to 50 trading accounts with the top-tier Pro plan.
Trademetria offers a free account that lets you import up to 30 trades per month. Paid plans start at $29.95 per month.
Conclusion: Best Trading Journals
Using a trading journal can help you identify which of your setups and trading strategies are most profitable, enabling you to become a more consistent and profitable trader. We think Tradervue is the all-around best trading journal for 2022, but all of the platforms we highlighted offer in-depth tools for tracking and analyzing your trades.