For this review we have a look at SwissRunner, a trader who’s been on ZuluTrade for 66 weeks. At the time of writing (June 5th 2014) this signal provider was the 2nd most popular in terms of money following them (almost $3 million). They were also ranked 15th in the ZuluRanking. Based on SwissRunner’s ZuluTrade profile and trade history, here’s our review of this Swiss based trader:
- overall profitable and fairly consistent
- follows signals with own live ZuluTrade account
- trades low volatile pair (i.e. overall less risky)
- over 1 year trading history
- takes into account news event
- fairly high relative historical drawdown
- no clear maximum stop levels (total risk not known with 18 open trades)
- managed 4 other systems which bombed on ZuluTrade
When we look at SwissRunner ‘s profit graph (see below) we see an overall increase which, excluding the first two months, is fairly gradual. Their first two months of trading on ZuluTrade were however very volatile. In terms of monthly profits, only one month was a losing month to date when unrealised PnL is taken into account.
In total 6,247 pips profit was booked by SwissRunner on ZuluTrade so far, which is just over 400 pips per month average. More pips were made during the first 6 months though and looking at the past 6 months only, the average returns were 320 pips per month.
Overall these results were achieved by SwissRunner against a drawdown of -2,020 pips, though excluding the first few months, the maximum drawdown was -674 pips. However, whichever way you look at this, the drawdown versus returns is still pretty high. Overall it’s 32% and just looking at the past 6 months it’s 35%.
SwissRunner describes themselves as ‘an expert in statistics and algorithmic trading’, using a strategy they optimised for a year and a half. They also mention they observe the news, and from their status updates and trade history on ZuluTrade it’s clear this is the case. In terms of recommended total number of trades SwissRunner suggest to allow for 18. However this was only used once so far and normally the amount opened are 10 or less.
It’s important to note that SwissRunner specialise in trading the EUR/CHF pair. This is important to know since this pair is probably the least volatile of the major currency pairs. In fact the Swiss Central Bank (SCB) pegs the CHF to the EUR. Hence the daily movements are pretty small. Obviously this means the risk is smaller than trading on other more volatile pairs, though the potential daily profits will be smaller too.
In fact looking at SwissRunner’s historical trades on ZuluTrade we notice that their worst single trade only went as low as -185 pips before reversing and being closed at -60.9 pips, even though this trade was open for almost 2 weeks! Looking at the historical trades we also notice that SwissRunner doesn’t seem to use fixed stop levels, and most trades seem to be closed manual. However, again because of the low volatility of the pair, the use of stop levels is probably slightly less important as long as positions are monitored daily. The one major risk though could be if the SCB changes the peg level, something which happened a few years ago, and caused a 5,000 pip movement within seconds.
With potentially 18 open trades and no stops, the potential drawdown can still go up quite quickly, even on the EUR/CHF pair. With no fixed stops, the trust of how the drawdown and risk will be managed is fully down to the ZuluTrade signal provider in this case. A positive factor here though is that SwissRunner follow their own signals from a live ZuluTrade account, and they mention they’ve done this since the beginning. While the amount they use to follow themselves is probably not massive (otherwise the highest profit made from this trader in the table on the left of their ZuluTrade profile would be higher), it’s still a positive factor since they risk some of their own money as well. A slightly more worrying observation is that SwissRunner is know as 5 other systems on ZuluTrade, 4 of which have bombed.
Average profits per trade are 8 pips, which is good, but not great. Especially if you take into account the slippage which you may experience this number can be low. However, because the EUR/CHF pair is traded I’d expect slippage to be low. Firstly because the spreads on this pair are normally low across all brokers and secondly because volatility is low.
So overall, the results of SwissRunner have been pretty consistent (excluding the first two months). Historical drawdown on the other hand has been fairly high when compared to the average returns. However because a low volatile pair is being traded overall risk can be consider slightly lower than when more volatile pairs are being traded. Nevertheless because 18 positions can be opened at 1 time and no stops are being use, full trust needs to lie with how SwissRunner manages their own trades. The fact they risk their own money is a positive factor here, as is the fact that they take into account news events and provide occasional status updates. One key worry though are the other systems they tried on ZuluTrade, but which failed.
Please note that we include any ZuluTrade trader reviews here for information purposes only. Any review should not be considered as investment advice. Trading Forex and using social trading networks to copy other traders can be highly risky. Never invest money you cannot afford to lose and always consult an independent financial advisor if you’re not sure.