How many subscribers can a system expect?

Lets say for example the following system is posted on this site…

Trades es, approx 4-5 trades per week.

Average trade profit (total net profit / number of trades) = $50, based on a single contract.

Average winners 80%,

no major close to close drawdowns (ie max 10% peak to trough).

equity curve sloping in the right direction etc etc.

What is a reasonable number of subscriptions one can expect from this site after say 3-6 months of live trades.

I appreciated this is a difficult question, but am only after a rough idea (ie is it more likely this sort of system will attract 0 subscribers or 5 subscribers or 20 or 100 or 1000).


Just take a look at the systems that get the most views, and the ones that have “my analyst” comments from others. Most are not slow and steady. The system you describe is more slow and steady, with “only” $10K per year in profits. I would guess to keep drawdown below 10% of equity, you’d probably need to start with $20K. This gives 50% annual return. This system won’t even show up as significant compared to the 200-500% high fliers. Those systems get all the attention, before they inevitably crash (which usually happens after developer says “my system is different, stats don’t apply, mine will never crash…”.)

So, my answer is 0 to 10 subs, after 6 months.

As one point of reference, my system has $63 avg trade on 1 ES contract, 5 trades per week, 142% annual return, 6 months of history, but 27% max drawdown and 52% wins (with weak APD, profit factor and Sharpe). So, I’m close to most of your criteria (except % wins, which is irrelevant to all but newbies or egomaniacs), and I’m at the lower range (really lower range) of subs.

BUT, I am not complaining. I probably would not subscribe to my own system with the record it shows. I do trade it with my own money, though, since its performance is exactly what 10 years of walk forward results show (so I have confidence in it), and I am adequately capitalized and emotionally prepared to suffer through 25-35% drawdown.

Sexy systems with parabolic equity curves sell. But they usually live hard and die young.

Hope this helps.

Well said, Kevin. I think we’re headed for a great washout, at least in terms of stock index systems.

Once this happens, C2 will have to introduce a new measure of success that involves the volatility of the instruments being traded. SP Emini margin at one of the largest firms (MFG) is now more than $8k – other symbols are also increased appropriately. Lots of firms are lagging that figure, but you can bet they’ll get there. MFG ranks at the top of their risk control.

How many stock futures systems would be in business at C2 with that margin requirement? Hint – only the good ones.

You are definitely right. And how bout the ES day trading margin rate of $500 at some firms? That is crazy!

thanks for the reply

A few have $300…

re the "Sexy systems with parabolic equity curves" any idea of the subscriber base this kind of system attracts?

You might try PM’ing the developers of those systems and see if they’ll tell you (they probably will not).

You can get a sense of their popularity by looking at the number of view, and the number of people who’ve marked system on “my analyst” page.