TradeSim Review

  • Trading Simulator
  • Stock Charts
  • Features
  • Value
4.1

Summary

TradingSim web-based trading simulator that enables traders to paper trade based on historical data. This platform promises more functionality than your run-of-the-mill web simulator. Is it worth the extra money? Find out in this review.

Pros

  • Only day trading simulator with some semblance of stock screening (“Market Movers” feature)
  • TradingView charts
  • Hotkeys
  • Time & sales
  • Quite cheap

Cons

  • Only two years of historical data
  • One of their main competitors, thinkOnDemand, is free to TD Ameritrade clients

About TradingSim

TradingSim is a 100% web-based trading simulator that enables traders to paper trade on historical intraday data. The platform has much more functionality than your average day trading simulator, offering unexpected features like tick data and time & sales data.

The goal of the platform is to allow day traders of all experience levels to practice and test strategies. It’s a real-life backtest that actually controls for the human element involved in execution, emotions, and stock selection.

Keep reading our TradingSim review to find out if this trading simulator is right for you.

TradingSim Website

Pricing Options

TradingSim has three different pricing tiers.

Equities Only

Price: $49/mo or $300/yr

This tier only includes historical price data for equities. Here are the features included in the plan, as laid out by TradingSim:

  • 11,000+ Stocks
  • 1,000+ ETFs
  • Market Movers screener
  • Over 500 Trading sessions
  • Hotkeys
  • Track Your PNL
  • Risk Management Settings

You can also add Level 2 market data for an additional $8.25/mo.

Futures Only

Price:  $49/mo or $300/yr

This tier only includes data for futures contracts. Here are the features included in the plan:

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  • 20 Top Futures Contracts
  • Bitcoin Futures
  • 2 Years of Historical Futures Data
  • Top Indices, Commodities, Currencies, and Bonds
  • Hotkeys
  • Track Your PNL
  • Risk Management Settings

Equities & Futures

Price: $79/mo or $432/yr

This tier includes market data for both equities and futures contracts. You get all of the functionality from the other two tiers at a 28% discount.

You can try out any TradingSim plan risk-free for 7 days.

TradingSim Pricing

TradingSim vs. Competitors

TradingSim is not alone in the day trading simulator business. There are plenty of competitors with similar offerings. So how does TradingSim compare to these? First, we should establish the popular players in the space:

thinkOnDemand

This is part of the ThinkOrSwim trading platform, allowing you to toggle between your real money and paper trading account with ease. Here are a few pros & cons of using thinkOnDemand versus TradingSim.

Pros

  • Part of ThinkOrSwim architecture. Comfortable trading platform with great charts
  • Currently over 4 years of data, double that of TradingSim
  • Free with ThinkorSwm account

Cons

  • No scanning or Market Movers list
  • Weaker time manipulation functionality
  • No time & sales

NinjaTrader Demo

The NinjaTrader trading platform comes with a built-in paper trading account that’s similar to thinkOnDemand.

Pros

  • High quality charts
  • Depth of market data
  • Decent time manipulation

Cons

  • Difficult to get used to the platform
  • Designed primarily for futures and forex

There are also platforms like TradeOff that attempt to gamify paper trading. However, this isn’t a dedicated market replay platform and it can be more difficult to practice day trading with TradeOff.

TradingSim’s Word

TradingSim displays its own comparison on its website. While biased, it is worth including in this TradingSim review. They also have a few testimonials from popular traders like Kunal of Bulls on Wall Street.

 

tradingsim comparison

TradingSim Features

Below is the dashboard for the TradingSim platform. Let’s dive into some of the features.

TradingSim Platform

Charts by TradingView

One of the most crucial parts of any trading platform, whether simulated or live, is the charting package. Glitchy, slow charts can ruin a trading experience and even cost you money. Luckily for subscribers of TradingSim, TradingView’s excellent HTML5 charts are seamlessly integrated into the web based platform. They feature more than 60 technical indicators and more than 30 drawing tools, accounting for the vast majority of technical analysis systems and styles.

As far as charting platforms go, it is very difficult to complain about TradingView. You get access to clean charts with a lot of different trading tools. You can use line charts, candle charts, bar charts, and more. TradingView’s charts also make for a more realistic trading environment within TradingSim – after all, many day traders rely on TradingView for live trading.

🏆 Top Rated Services 🏆

Our team has reviewed over 200 services. These are our favorites:
📈  Best Day Trading Service
Investors Underground
📊  Best Stock Scanner
Trade Ideas
📉 Best Stock Charts
TradingView
💰  Best Stock Picking Service
Motley Fool
📱  Best Mobile Broker
Webull
💻   Best Robo-Advisor
M1 Finance

tradingsim chart

Fast Forwarding and Time Manipulation

tradingsim timeline

Market session replay is one of the best TradingSim features and this is where the paper trading platform most outshines its competition. Below your chart window, you’ll find a timeline that you can use to navigate instantly to any specific time of day. So, if your trading style involves only taking trades during the last 30 minutes of the trading day, you can quickly and easily jump to that time.

Additionally, you can change the replay speed. TradingSim lets you play back historical data at a rate as fast as 15 minutes of data per second. This is great for getting a large sample size of trades in a very small span of time.

tradingsim time

For example, let’s say we want to test an opening range breakout swing trading strategy. In that case, the important part of the trade is seeing the opening bar and then setting your orders. Using a super fast multiplier like 15 minutes of historical data per second would enable us to zoom through stock trading and quickly give us an idea of whether the strategy is viable or not.

Of course, you can also pause to investigate trade setups as they’re forming. This is especially helpful if you’re using market depth data and want to pair that with detailed technical analysis.

Market Movers

tradingsim screen

The ability to screen through stocks on historical data is usually the biggest drawback of day trading simulators. While TradingSim doesn’t offer a full screener, they do more than the rest of the competition with the platform’s Market Movers lists. The criteria for screening is quite barebones, though. You can only filter by highest/lowest gains on the day, expressed in either dollars or percentage points. Even with these basic lists, we can find the “stocks in play” for that day instead of sticking to arbitrary large caps that we wouldn’t actually have traded that day because other stocks were in play.

One more basic screen TradingSim can add to really push this feature to its limit is volume gainers. While the percentage gainers is great, many active traders never touch those high-flying pharma companies always topping the gainers lists. For many, a high-volume, 2% move in a stock like Exxon or Johnson & Johnson is just as exciting for day trading as a 50% move in an obscure biotech, because one can deploy much more capital towards a mega-cap trade. Many traders put just a few basis points with high leverage on whichever mega and large caps are in play that day, because it drastically reduces the probability of a black swan event that more risky traders are exposed to when trading those hot biotechs.

Hotkeys

tradingsim hotkeys

This is another great feature for simulated trading that will mean a lot to a small demographic of traders, while serving as a nice bonus to the rest of us. Hotkeys are vital for super short term, scalping traders. Hot keys allow you to place orders faster by using keyboard shortcuts. While hot keys can be risky for new traders, they can also be convenient when you’re not trading with real money. It can be easier to focus on a stock’s price action when you’re simply pressing a few buttons to enter and exit trades.

Of course, you should treat practice trading the same way you would treat real trading. So, if you don’t plan on trading with hot keys, don’t get carried away with them while using TradingSim.

TradingSim In Action

TradingSim – Final Thoughts

Of the day trading simulators current on the market, we think TradingSim is the best, both in terms of price and practicality. It’s really cheap at $25 per month, especially when you consider that you could lose much more than $25 in your first day of live trading if you’ve never practiced your trading strategies. If a new day trader spent all of their free time over the next few months listening to trading podcasts, reading trading blogs/books, and paper trading on TradingSim, I don’t think it’s unlikely that they’ll come out on the other side a consistently profitable trader. All at a cost of $25 per month.

What really puts TradingSim above their competition, as I mentioned earlier, is their “Market Movers” feature that shows the biggest gainers of that market day. TradingSim would be smart to realize that this is their differentiator and to spend most of their R&D on improving that feature and only that feature. The rest of the features are fine, and basically commoditized across the platforms; they don’t change one’s trading experience much.

Our TradingSim review did turn up some flaws. The platform’s interface is a quite basic and looks nothing like your average DMA day trading software like DAS Trader or Lightspeed Trader. However, I would make the argument that it doesn’t really matter. TradingSim nails the basics required of a trading simulator and offers solid tools for more experienced traders who want to practice trading strategies or try out new strategies.

Ultimately, TradingSim is a learning tool. It allows traders to practice trading without risking their capital. Unlike paper trading accounts, TradingSim lets you replay older stock market data so you can “backtest” your strategies in real-time.

Test out the free 7-day trial to see if it’s a good fit for you.

Pros

  • Test strategies and practice risk management on historical market data
  • Only day trading simulator with some semblance of stock screening (“Market Movers” feature)
  • Supports stock trading and futures trading
  • Uses TradingView charts
  • Relatively cheap

Cons

  • Only two years of historical data
  • One of their main competitors, thinkOnDemand, is free to TD Ameritrade clients