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Sierra Chart - Futures Trading Platform

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Disclaimer: This third-party trading platform demo is designed as an introduction to the platform and its functionality. It is not intended to mimic trading results in a live trading environment. In an actual live trading environment, commissions and fees would be applied at the close of every business day, and an account statement would be generated. Daily statements and the associated fees are not applied within the demo environment and as such, those fees, which may have a material impact on your account, are not reflected in final profit and loss calculations within this demo. Other factors such as latency fill price and execution times may also differ from live trading results. It is not intended for this demo to be an accurate representation of actual profits or losses that may occur in a live trading environment. These 3rd party platforms generally supply the user with real-time market data, however that can change at any time and without notice. This data should not be considered an adequate approximation of the trading results or experience that may occur in a live-trading environment.

How to Connect to Sierra Chart

Discount Trading will provide you with the necessary CQG Username and Password to access your account. You will need that before you can proceed. Go into the Sierra Chart trading program. Select Global Settings. Then select Data/Trade Service Settings on the menu.

Sierra Chart Main Screen

You can then click on the Service list box on the top of the window. Select the CQG FIX selection from the list.

**In the case of a CQG demo account or in the case where Discount Trading has specified you need to use the CQG Web API, then select the CQG Web API selection from the list**.

In the Service Setting Click the Server setting, select Live. Only select Demo if you are using a CQG demo account.

In the Service Setting Click the Username setting enter your CQG trading account username.

In the Service Setting Click the Password box and enter your CQG trading account password provided. These are case sensitive so please make certain that you enter them exactly as provided by Discount Trading.

Sierra Chart Main Screen

You need to make sure that the Service Setting Select Connect to Market Data Server is True. However, if you will be using the Sierra Chart Exchange Data Feed for market data, then you need to set this to False.

Normally in Service Setting : Allow Server to Drop Data should be set to False. This is a CQG specific feature. If this is set to True, it will tell the CQG server that when it detects your trading program is not processing data as fast as the server is sending data, it will start slowing down some market data and not send it through to your platform. Set this option to True if you notice that your connection to the CQG server is frequently getting disconnected or slowed.

You should enable the Connect On Program Startup and the Reconnect on failure options in the selection.

You can set the Time Zone setting to the time zone that you want the data times to be displayed.

You can set the Intraday Data Storage Time Unit to what you require.

Then, select OK to close the Data and Trade Service Settings.

Now, to connect to the data and trading server, select File then Connect to the Data Feed on the menu.

Sierra Chart Main Screen

If the Window :: Message Log window opens and displays error messages, then you should select File :: Disconnect to prevent further connection attempts. Carefully review the setup steps above again.

If there is some other message displayed in the Message Log, then in most cases it is a message from the CQG system. You need to read what it says and contact your broker/trading service about it. The message should be self-explanatory. If not, then have your broker/trading service contact CQG for interpretation of that particular message.

After checking the connection settings in the Global Settings :: Data/Trade Service Settings window and your CQG account enablements through Discount Trading, try connecting to the data and trading servers again by selecting File :: Connect to Data Feed on the menu.

Historical Charts

To open a Historical Chart, an Intraday Chart or a Trading DOM, select File :: Find Symbol on the menu. Locate the symbol you want in the list and press the button. If you do not see the symbol that you want to use, contact Sierra Chart support so they can add it for you.

Sierra Chart Main Screen

Within this box, if you do not see any symbols listed in the Find Symbol window, then select Global Settings :: Symbol Settings :: Update From Server.

You must wait for the symbol list to update. You can then press OK and try opening the Find Symbol window again.

If you are looking for a complete list of CQG symbols, you will need to refer to the CQG main website for a complete symbol list.

What is Sierra Chart?

  • Sierra Chart is a professional trading platform for the futures markets which is compatible with many externally available trading services. Sierra Charts supports many modes including manual, automated, and simulated Trading.

  • A very popular platform used by thousands of futures traders world-wide.

  • Real-time data and Historical data, Charting, and Technical Analysis platform for the futures markets.

  • Sierra Chart fully supports the DTC (Data and Trading Communications Protocol).

  • Optional high quality direct data connections for CME / CBOT / NYMEX / COMEX / Eurex / ICE / HKFE / Euronext / LIFFE / NYSE / NASDAQ / Cash Indices realtime market data feed is available. *There is an additional cost for real-time exchange data.

Sierra Chart Main Screen

Cost for Platform

  • Low pricing makes Sierra Chart affordable for futures traders world-wide.

  • Refer to the table below for the available discounts. The below are costs paid directly to Sierra Chart

Number Of Month Standard Sierra Chart
(Service Package 3)
Sierra Chart with Advanced Features
(Service Package 5)
1 $24 USD $33 USD 0 %
3 $63.36 USD ($21.12 USD/Month) $87.12 USD ($29.04 USD/Month) 12 %
6 $109.44 USD ($18.24 USD/Month) $150.48 USD ($25.08 USD/Month) 24 %
12 $190.08 USD ($15.84 USD/Month) $261.36 USD ($21.78 USD/Month) 34 %

*All pricing is subject to small changes over time without notice.


  • Stable and highly customizable design.

  • Uncomplicated interface that can handle the most demanding needs. Sierra Charts has been proven and trusted by investors/traders/brokers for over a decade.

  • High performance programming for a reliable and fast user experience.

  • Designed for both basic and advanced traders. Easy to use automated trading. Use our exclusive Chart DOM (depth of market) which is a functional Trading DOM fully integrated with charts.

  • Comprehensive documentation available for setup and use.

  • Sierra Chart supports numerous internal and external Data and Trading services. All the major data services and backend trading platforms are supported. Sierra Chart supports DTC making it automatically compatible with any external Data or Trading service using this protocol.

  • DiscountTrading recommends using CQG data backend.

  • FIX and DTC protocols are available for the most reliable and trouble-free trading experience.

  • Sierra Chart is simple and easy to use. Download a demo today and see for yourself. All functions are easily found with features and flexibility for advanced users.

  • Create custom studies, indicators, and trading systems using the Sierra Chart Advanced Custom Study Interface. There are also many add-ons developed by third party developers.

  • Display historical market depth data on charts.

Development and New Versions

  • Sierra Chart is being continuously improved. Come be a part of our growing community! We are here to support you with quality trading software and services.

  • New updates released periodically

  • Drawing Tools increased from 32 to 64. This applies to Drawing Tools like the Price Retracement tool which uses a variable number of levels.

  • When using any of the Spreadsheet studies, there are new study inputs used to specify the name of the Sheet the chart data is outputted to. This can be used as an alternative to using the standard of Sheet# where # by default is the chart number.

  • Added new variables and functions to ACSIL. You will see the new members at the bottom of the SierraChart.h file. Most of them have now been documented.

  • Various other developments.

Trading Connectivity, Historical Data, and OCO orders

  • Sierra Chart directly provides historical daily data and detailed intraday data for stocks, forex, futures and indexes without having to use an external service.

  • All of the major data services and trading backends are supported: CQG, T4, etc.

  • Direct connections to all data and trading services. Sierra Chart does not use Java or .NET. Sierra Chart is programmed in native C++ code for the greatest speed and reliability.

  • OCO (order cancels order) and bracket order functionality are available on the server side, Sierra Chart uses this server side functionality for the greatest safety for OCO and bracket orders in case your personal computer becomes disconnected from your order entry provider.

Sierra Chart – Order Types

Market, Limit, Stop, Stop-Limit, OCO Limit and Stop, OCO Limit and Stop-Limit, Market If Touched, Trailing Stop, Trailing Stop-Limit, Triggered Trailing Stop, Triggered Trailing Stop Limit, Step Trailing Stop, Step Trailing Stop Limit, Triggered Step Trailing Stop, Triggered Step Trailing Stop Limit, Limit Chase, Limit Touch Chase, OCO Buy Stop Sell Stop, OCO Buy Stop-Limit Sell Stop-Limit, OCO Buy Limit Sell Limit

(All Orders May Not Be Available on All Markets)

Sierra Chart – Charts

Create Historical charts with a bar period of Daily, Weekly, Monthly, Quarterly, Yearly, or any number of days. Historical data for the charts is automatically downloaded from various supported services. The downloaded data is saved locally on your hard disk in a text format. You have the ability to easily edit the data, if necessary. Historical charts are updated in real time, so you always have a chart which is up to date with the latest trade.

Drawing Tools For Charts:

  • Pointer
  • Chart Values/Crosshair
  • Adjust Regions
  • Hand
  • Zoom In / Cancel Zoom In
  • Line, Ray, Extended Line
  • Chart Calculator
  • Price Retracement (2 point) | Price Expansion (2 point) | Price Projection (3 point) Tools
  • Vertical Line | Horizontal Line | Horizontal Ray
  • Horizontal Level
  • Parallel Lines
  • Parallel Rays
  • Linear Regression with Channel
  • Raff Regression Channel
  • Time Expansion
  • Time Projection
  • Fibonacci Fan / Percentage Fan / Speed Resistance Lines
  • Gann Fan
  • Type Text | Stationary Text
  • Pitchfork (Median Line Tool) | Pitchfork - Schiff Median | Pitchfork - Modified Schiff
  • Rectangle | Extending Rectangle | Ellipse
  • Gann Grid
  • Arrow
  • Marker
  • Draw Volume Profile
  • Zig-Zag
  • Cycle
  • Reward/Risk
  • Swing Marker
  • Date Marker
  • OHLC Ray
  • Control Bar Text Drawing Buttons

Chart Drawing Modification Functions include:

  • Chart Drawing Properties
  • Chart Drawing Alerts
  • Move Drawing
  • Copy and Move Drawing
  • Adjust Drawing
  • Copy and Adjust Drawing
  • Make Line Parallel
  • Snap to High/Low and Snap Side to High/Low
  • Modify Text
  • Erasing Chart Drawings
  • Quickly Changing Colors / Line Style / Line Width
  • Hide Drawing

Chart Linking - Sierra Chart

Chart linking allows you to maintain various settings among a group of charts that share the same Link Number. Chart Linking settings can be accessed through Chart >> Chart Settings >> Advanced Settings 2 on the menu.

Link Number: For each chart that you want to link together within the same Chartbook, set this to the same nonzero number for all of those charts and Sierra Chart will use this number to link them together.

For example, if you have 4 charts that you want to link together, then select the same Link Number for each of those charts. Next, enable one or more of the Chart Linking options documented below to select the type of Chart Linking that you want.

For example, if you have enabled Link Symbol and Link Bar Period for a particular chart and you change the symbol in another chart or the bar period in another chart that has the same Link Number, then the chart with these options enabled will be changed to match.

The Link Number will be shown in the title bar of the chart window. Example: L5.

The scope of chart linking is within a Chartbook. In other words, a Link Number is unique within a Chartbook. It is possible to use the same Link Number in different Chartbooks and have no association between the charts with that same Link Number that are in separate Chartbooks.

The particular Chart Linking option which is enabled on a chart, affects that chart if the corresponding action is performed in another chart with the same Link Number. So in other words, if there is chart 1 and 2, they both use the same Chart Linking number, and chart 1 has Chart Linking >> Scroll Position enabled and chart 2 does not, then scrolling chart 2 will scroll chart 1.

The following are descriptions of the available Chart Linking options (Types). These different Chart Linking Types apply only to the chart for which they are set on, not to other charts.

  • Symbol: When the symbol of a chart is changed, the symbol of other linked charts using this option will change to match.
  • Bar Period: When the bar period of a chart is changed, the bar period of other linked charts using this option will change to match.
  • Scroll Position: When the scroll position of a chart is changed, the other linked charts using this option will be scrolled to the identical position.
  • Session Times: When the Session Times of a chart are changed, the other linked charts using this option will be changed to the same Session Times.
  • Studies: When the studies of a chart are changed, the other linked charts using this option will be changed to have the exact same study configuration. This includes all of the studies and their settings.

    If you are linking Studies through the Chart Linking feature, potentially there could be problems when using the Spreadsheet studies. This is true when the Chart Data Output Sheet Number input with the Spreadsheet study is set to a nonzero number.

    If there are many studies on the chart, and/or a lot of days of data loaded in a chart, there are many charts linked together and you are using the Chart Linking >> Studies option, then potentially Sierra Chart can freeze for an extended time after changing the studies on one chart and all of the other charts are updated. This happens because the studies have to be recalculated on all of the charts that are linked together.
  • Link Days to Load: When the Use Number of Days to Load >> Days to Load setting of a chart is changed, the other linked charts using this option will be changed to have the same Days to Load setting. This setting also applies to the Use Date Range settings.
  • Link Bar Spacing: When the bar spacing of a chart is changed, the other linked charts using this option will also have their bar spacing changed to match.
  • Link Trade Window: When the Trade Window settings of a chart are changed, the other linked charts using this option will also have the same settings changed in their associated Trade Window. All of the settings on the Trade Window are linked.
  • Vertical Scale: When the vertical scale of a chart is changed through Interactive Scale Range or Interactive Scale Move, or the Constant Range is changed when using a Constant Range scale, the other linked charts using this option will have identical adjustments made to their vertical scales.

Sierra Chart is a Portable Application.

Sierra Chart does not use the Windows registry in any way. All program files, data files and configuration files are installed into the folder and sub-folders where Sierra Chart is installed to. Sierra Chart can easily be installed to a removable drive. You can install unlimited copies of Sierra Chart to a system simply by installing each one into its own folder. There are no restrictions on the number of copies that can be run simultaneously on a system. By installing multiple copies of Sierra Chart on a system, you can work with multiple Data and Trading services or use multiple accounts with those services.