The old saying goes “technical analysis is a great way to part traders from their money.” However to some it is still a helpful trend to see market trends and to hopefully buy and invest while it’s still on it’s way up and not when a stock is about to drop in price. Technical analysis has also been called a great tool to see historically where you should have bought and sold. As a predictor though it is often faulty at best and of course if it worked will then everyone would be rich by now.
With that said technical analysis increases your probability of seeing where the market is headed. It provides you some background into how an asset is doing and what might come next and is far better than going into an investment blind.
When you using technical analysis software “uptrends” are marked by seeing at least three successive rising troughs and peaks. While “downtrends” occur when you have at least three successive troughs and peaks.
The four best free technical analysis charting software for investing are below.
EclipseTrader is an Eclipse Rich Client Platform (RCP) application focused on the building of an online stock trading system. featuring shares pricing watch, intraday and history charts with technical analysis indicators, level II/market depth view, news watching, and integrated trading.
Main features of EclipseTrader include:
- Realtime Quotes
- Trading Accounts Management
- Integrated Trading/li>
- Intraday Charts
- History Charts
- Technical Analisys Indicators
- Price Patterns Detection
- Financial News
- Level II (Book) Market Data
Qtstalker is a user friendly Technical Analysis package for GNU/Linux (and hence other Unix-like systems). Similar to commercial wares such as Metastock, Supercharts and Tradestation. Keeps to a lean, simple design for speed, portability, and low resource usage. Because it uses a plugin model, Qtstalker can easily be extended.
Main features of Qtstalker include:
- A point-and-click object-oriented graphical user interface.
- Chart types include line, bar and candlestick.
- Customizable colors. Logarithmic and linear arithmetic scaling. Scale to screen.
- Indicators plugins include MACD, MAs, Bollinger Bands, RSI, and dozens more. Provides access to the TA-Lib library of common functions.
- A simple scripting facility to create custom indicators. This powerfully enables combination of different plots in one indicator and combining of other indicators and calculations.
- A special indicator “ExScript” enables external scripts to pass indicator data in.
- An “Indicator Summary” tool shows a table of all indicator parameters from all active indicators. It also writes the data to XML output for use by external programs.
- Chart drawing objects: trendlines, buy/sell arrows, horizontal and vertical lines, Fibonacci retracement lines, text and cycles.
- Quote plugins download data from online sources such as Yahoo, CME, NYBOT.
- Data import plugins for plain-text CSV files.
- The “Plugin” architecture for quotes and indicators enables easy future extensibility.
- Minute, daily, weekly and monthly chart compression options.
- Various data classes to support for investment types such as stocks, futures, indices, ratios and spreads.
- A back testing function allowing indicator performance tests using actual trading data.
- A very basic portfolio manager. Good for tracking open positions. (Suggestions welcome.)
- A Scanner that can scan the qtstalker database for charts that meet a user defined criteria.
- A paper trading mode enabling users to practice trading without risking capital.
Free Chart Geany: (http://freechartgeany.sourceforge.net/)
Free Chart Geany is the free and open source edition of Chart Geany, a commercial solution for market technical analysis and charting.
Main features of Free Chart Geany include:
- Support for major technical analysis indicators like: Simple Moving Average, Exponential Moving Average, MACD, Relative Strength Index, Bollinger Bands and Parabolic SAR.
- Support for various Comma Separated Values (CSV) formats like Metastock 7, Metastock 8, AMI Broker, Yahoo Finance, Google Finance and Standard CSV.
- Support for various drawing and text objects like Labels, Trailing Text, Horizontal Lines, Vertical Lines, Trend Lines and Fibonacci Retracements.
- Line, Bar, Candle and Trend Candle (Heikin-Ashi) charts.
- Linear or semi-logarithmic price scaling.
- Zoom In and Zoom out.
- Time-frames: Day, Week, Month and Year.
- One click screen shots for charts.
- Spreadsheet-like data manager.
- Single file local storage. You can work offline if needed.
- Self-contained software, independent from other software back-ends like Java Virtual Machine or .NET Framework.
- Easy download of quotes from Yahoo Finance or Google Finance.
- Free Chart Geany is a tab based application. You can manage the charts the same way you manage the pages of your web browser.
AIOTrade (former Humai Trader) is a free, open source (under the terms of BSD license) stock technical analysis platform with a pluggable architecture that is ideal for extensions such as indicators and charts. It’s built on pure java.
Main features of AIOTrade include:
- Pull stock price from Yahoo
- Runs on your PC
- Is built on Java
Let us know if you have any other suggestions for free technical analysis charting software for investing in the comments section below.