Back To The Future Trading
Trading indicators that attempt to call market turning points, well ahead in the future. Unfortunately the developer does not trade inside of the live trading room, nor proof of any trading success whatsoever. The live trading room is merely a four hour, extended infomercial with no live trading.
Thanks for reading today’s review of Back To The Future Trading
What is Back To The Future Trading? Back To The Future Trading is a suite of trading indicators for NinjaTrader, MetaTrader or TradeStation, with an accompanied live trading room. The cost of the software is varied; there are 18 indicators in total that can be purchased with an average price of $500 per indicator. In addition to being able to pick and choose from different indicators, there are also 3 packages that can be purchased ranging in price from $1995 up to $3495. Each package contains an assortment of indicators, if you spend more, then you get more indicators. The $3495 package includes all of the indicators.
The trading room cannot be purchased separately. The trading room is actually meant to be more of a “training room” and can last from 30 to 180 days, this depends upon the amount of money spent. Spend $1995 you get 30 days of the training room, spend $3495 and you get 180 days of the training room. Once the training period ends, then the trader is on their own and there is no other additional live training support provided. However, the purchaser is able to watch recorded videos of prior training events.
At the heart of the Back To The Future Trading indicators is its ability to supposedly forecast future turning points and provide trading signals at some point ahead in the future. In other words, the software looks at a data series and then projects into the future what it believes will happen.
Inside the live trading room
On Thursday’s, at 4pm EST, after the market closes, the owner of the company Michael Lydick will hold a weekly meeting to discuss how the forecasting signals played out over the prior 4 days. However, I personally found it of little value because all of the chart examples were prepared in advance by Michael. Hindsight works wonderful with ANY indicator. And I found that Michael’s hindsight was indeed exemplary. On Friday, Michael then holds a live trading session. However, there is no live trading. We recorded two of the Friday live trading sessions which lasted approximately 4 hours each session. At no time did we witness any actual trading. Instead, the four hour live sessions is more of a product infomercial where Michael spends several hours flipping through charts and highlighting where the software got it right.
It appears that Michael is using WD Gann cycles as WD Gann is featured prominently on the Back To The Future website. WD Gann was certainly an interesting character, during the prohibition era 1920’s, WD Gann began publishing a series of newsletters that described his stock market forecasting method. There are multiple references to WD Gann on the internet, admittedly, as a person looks over a WD Gann forecasting chart…it looks quite impressive. The following is a common example…
At the heart of WD Gann’s trading method is forward cycle analysis. And at the heart of WD Gann’s newsletters were how he would create a weekly forecast of what he felt the market should do over a range of different commodity and stock groups. WD Gann newsletters would always start with a few well chosen examples of how WD Gann and his forward forecasting method worked over a select group of carefully selected stocks or commodities. In this vein, I see a great similarity in presentation between WD Gann and Michael Lydick’s Back To The Future Trading. Both have the benefit of hindsight, both able to pluck a out well chosen example of how well the method worked over the selected data series.
The problem with followers of WD Gann
WD Gann is considered one of the first trading guru’s of the modern industrial era. What really made WD Gann effective was that he was the first to effectively leverage a more efficient US Postal system and leverage the speed of information distribution. His weekly newsletters hit mailboxes over and over, and the esoteric nature of forecasts, blended with an almost spiritual/cryptic delivery made him a very popular financial prognosticator. When WD Gann passed away in the 1950’s, many naturally assumed that he left a vast fortune to his son, John Gann. However, interviews with John Gann later revealed that Gann never made a penny trading, instead his estate consisted of only his home.
The problem with forward cycle analysis
I am sure that most of you have heard the saying, “Its always 5 o’clock somewhere”. Which means its always a good time to have a drink. And this saying is perfect for those that use forward cycle analysis to predict future market turning points. In the case of Michael Lydick and Back To The Future Trading, you can always find a chart where the forward cycle analysis will work perfectly. The problem is that we never can accurately predict which time frame will work best. Someday’s it works awesome on one minute bars, some days on 5 minute bars, other days its absolutely beautiful on 15 minute bars. The benefit of hindsight gives us the unfair and cruel edge that we so desperately desire.
This is also the problem with all indicators, whether they are lagging indicators or they are forward predictive indicators…sometimes they work great and sometimes they don’t work at all. In my opinion, and from personal experience, as traders we move through a series of progressive discoveries regarding trading indicators. We purchase NinjaTrader, or Tradestation, or whatever charting package that fancies us, and then we start applying indicators to the charts. We read a few books about trading indicators and then we apply these indicators to our charts, hopefully giving us the edge we need. Unfortunately, when we start trading, we soon discover that the common trading indicators like MACD, Stochastics, moving averages, etc. will work sometimes but too often they don’t work at all. And so what do we do next? Well, we go onto the internet, that great oracle of all things truthful and pure, and we start searching for “better” indicators.
Invariably, we find that there is a Chinese army of trading vendors willing to sell us the magic indicator that will solve all of our trading problems. Everything under the sun can be found. I wont go into the history of technical analysis, as this would take a hundred of years to encompass the scope and scale. However, one thing I am sure of…technical analysis is a lot like ladies fashion. What is hot today will be ugly and unwanted only a few short years from now. The pitch of Back To The Future Trading and its forward cycle analysis is nothing new. In fact, over the years it has taken on more shapes and names than the menu at Taco Bell. Same basic ingredients, but at the end of the day a taco bell gordita is just a large taco bell, soft taco and a nacho grandre burrito is just like the nacho libre burrito but with a squirt of yellow nacho cheese. Whether it be WD Gann or Michael Lydick and his magic indicators, they are one in the same. They take a series of past data points and assume that these points contain a predictive component. They then push the data forward using a calculation not dissimilar to a sine wave.
The Acid Test
So, now that we have talked about the Back To The Future trading indicators, how do we really know if they really work? What is the most efficient and effective way for us to test the validity and authenticity of these trading indicators? Well, I can think of no better method than simply having the developer of these trading tools demonstrate them in real time, with real money. Unfortunately, this is not going to happen with Michael Lydick. He simply refuses to eat his own cooking. Which is frustrating.
I did write to Michael and explain to him that I would be writing a review and that he should provide me some proof of the validity of his approach. His response was how can I possibly write a review of his trading indicators if I have never tried his trading indicators? So let me get this straight, you want me spent several thousand dollars for the right to use the trading indicators, and open a trading account with thousands more dollars, with nothing more than hope that these trading indicators actually work? Yes. He said that would be the best approach and that I could trust that his trading indicators do actually work with uncanny accuracy. Heck Mike, why not just fire up those indicators and trade them yourself, show us with real money that they can generate a profit. Heck, I don’t even need for you to use real money, use a simulator. At least I can then go back to my readers and show them the results of your simulated efforts. Unfortunately, Mike wont eat his own cooking, inside of his live trading room. Does Mike trade outside of his live trading room, hiding away from public view, away from the spotlight of public scrutiny? He claims he does, but he simply refuses to disclose any personal trading performance.
One of the things that I like to do for entertainment and research into a trading vendor is to search online for reviews. One of my favorites is BikeMikesTrading (futures.io), as well as ForexPeaceArmy.com.
If a person takes a moment and searches BigMikesTrading, they will find several threads relating to BackToTheFutureTrading. I recommend that people take a moment and read some of the user comments regarding Michael Lydick and BackToTheFutureTrading. In my opinion, Mr. Lydick is quite argumentative and short with anyone that attempts to challenge the validity of his trading indicators. Also of note, and of particular interest is the thread at ForexPeaceArmy.com. A person identifying themselves as “bttft-michael” becomes, in my opinion, quite belligerent and defensive whenever anyone expresses an opinion that he finds disagreeable.
Going forward, I am definitely interested in interviewing legitimate purchasers of the BackToTheFuture trading indicators. If you can prove that you have purchased these indicators and would like to express your opinion, then please contact me directly, and as soon as possible. I may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What About The Testimonials!
It seems like the favorite and often used rabbit hole of most trading vendors is to point our questions and concerns towards actual customer testimonials. They tell us to talk to actual users that are making big bank and profiting daily from these magic trading indicators. This logic always drives me the most crazy. You are going to point me towards people that I don’t know in hopes that I can develop some sort of trusting bond and they will give me a message of affirmation? All of this reminds me of a conversation that I had a few months ago with my best friend, Mike.
Mike is an airline pilot. He also has an engineering degree and is a really smart dude. He flies the big jets, with hundreds of passengers. Sometimes he sends me pics from the cockpit to show off and intimidate me with the scope and scale of the instrumentation. Admittedly, when I see this dark cavern of buttons, switches, screens and whatnot, I cannot help but be impressed. How could a human use all of this stuff in tandem with the pressure and responsibility of delivering hundreds of people across vast spaces of land and water? It amazes me. However, in spite of all of Mike’s smarts, he sends me this dopey email about a software program that supposedly predicts the numbers of the Lotto.
He was serious. This program is called LottoPro and it automatically imports the winning lottery data from over 100 different state, national, and international lotteries. It then applies a series of analysis including, genetic algorithms, Fibonacci, Gann Cycles, and advanced chaos algorithms that supposedly are able to detect hidden patterns within the data. Mike explained to me that he thought it might actually work, and sure it sounded a little nutty but the program only costs $30. In addition to the low cost for this high quality software product, it also contained an unconditional 30 day money back guarantee.
In additional to sending me the really fancy screen shots of this software in action, Mike also sent me a newspaper article which acted as a customer testimonial. Apparently a man in Hollywood Florida used the program to win the $35 million dollar power ball. The gentleman purchased the program and made only a $2 dollar investment in the numbers that the software predicted and he won the jackpot. Of course, the vendor of the software features this prominently on page one of his website. Now, I am not going to get into the finer points of this, but how does an apparently smart guy like Mike get taken in by what most of us can so easily identify as a total scam. Folks, there is no software that can predict the lottery numbers. Its a random event. However the lesson to be learned is that even really smart people can be taken in by trading indicator hustlers.
Wrapping Things Up
I know that Mike Lydick is going to read this review, and it’s not going to sit well with him. I get it. I write a lot of crummy reviews. However, what people don’t seem to understand, or neglect to accept is that folks get hurt from products that have not and cannot be proven to work. For example, products that tease out small pieces of success and shadows of hope, always coming tantalizing close to delivering….but ultimately fail and drain yet another trading account. Mike, my friend, likes to believe that attacks like this are not fair and that he must be patient and accept his accuser. But I say to heck with that, I am not looking for grace or biblical perspective, what I want is for Michael Lydick to prove to the trading community that his products actually work, with a real time trading account. Anything less is simply another drab trading product by yet another trading guru that does not trade live, that I have reviewed for my opinion.
Well, that’s it for today. Thanks for reading. And I sincerely hope that at some point I can come back and write a new review of Back To The Future Trading, but next time I have actual proof that the developer can actually turn his theories into real trading profits. Please don’t forget to leave any comments below. Even the haters will discover that their voices are heard.