A Review of Metastock Format 8:
Is Upgrading Worth the Money?
are like many other traders, you have been eagerly waiting for the
release of Metastock Format 8 for one reason, and one reason only.
The reportedly redeveloped system tester. Metastock Format's one major
flaw has always been its lack of back testing capabilities, though
previous versions of Metastock Format are head and shoulders above
the competition on other fronts.
But whatever criteria you use to trade with, be it moving averages, candle sticks, fibonacci
retracements ,or any other trading system, you're going to need to back test it. Everyone
needs to thoroughly back test, or simulate, their trading system in ways that can match the
conditions you will be trading in. It's something all serious traders do.
Consequently, when Equis International (the makers of Metastock Format) announced an all-new type
of exploration that emulates running system tests over an entire database of securities, I could
hardly wait Metastock Format 8.0's release.
While waiting to receiving my copy of Metastock Format 8.0 I began building trading systems. By
the time my copy of Metastock Format 8.0 finally arrived I had about having around 20 systems
ready for testing, and couldn't wait to try them out.
However, when I loaded up the software, I was in for a surprise. It looked like nothing had changed.
I thought maybe Equis International had kept the same interface and added in greater flexibility
and some more features, but after searching in every nook and cranny, I found next to nothing that
was new. It looked the same and, except for a couple of small changes, it was the same!
Then I came to the System tester now called the Enhanced System Tester. Here was the major
reason for upgrading from version 7.22, and what appeared to be only real difference between
Metastock Format 7.22 and Metastock Format 8.0.
After fiddling around with the Enhanced System Tester for a few hours, and testing my 20 systems,
I reached the verdict that I had wasted my money . Despite the supposed
improvements to the Enhanced System Tester it, like its predecessor, left a lot to be
Even though the Metastock Format 8.0 Enhanced System Tester tests multiple securities in one
batch, it treats each security independently of the others. Therefore, when Metastock Format
tests the first security, it uses your predefined float and takes the trade over the test
period selected. Once that is completed, it repeats the same process for the second security,
using the same initial float, with no reference to the first security.
In the end, you receive the same result that you would have if you simply tested each security
individually and added the results together. Not only is this process dreadfully slow, but
the entire reason for testing your system is side-stepped. When your finished all the
explorations, the performance of your trading system is still unknown!
The moral of the story is that if you already own Metastock Format 7, don't worry about upgrading.
Simply stick with the version you have and keep your fingers crossed that Equis International
gets it right for Metastock Format 9.0.
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