Lincoln B. Fiske Jr.
President of TradingVisions Systems, Inc.
Interview Date: October, 2004
Interviewed by Striker CEO/Founder
John Gallwas: We understand that you founded TradingVisions Systems, Inc. in 2003 and that you are also registered as an Informational CTA with the NFA. Could you give us a brief summary of your academic and business background and what led you to becoming a trading systems developer?
Lincoln Fiske: My background is probably not typical for developers, since I've been a high school English teacher for over 20 years. Currently I'm on a year's leave-of-absence and am not planning to return to education. Since Junior High I've been interested in investing, starting at that point with mutual funds and stocks. Although at that time I was considering becoming a stock broker, I eventually turned to education to satisfy my love of literature and learning. In the late 80's I got involved in commodities, lured by leverage and stories of accelerated riches. After several years of unsuccessfully trying funds, systems, broker discretion, and CTAs, I turned to developing my own systems. A few years ago I released my first system to the public, and now offer six varied systems.
It's great to be able to now devote fulltime to being a systems developer. Developing requires a lot of focused time, and particularly because you can't predict outcomes, you need to be flexible with blocks of time. I'm fortunate to have this flexibility to pursue new ideas.
John Gallwas: What is your company's mission and can you give us the profile of a typical customer?
Lincoln Fiske: The mission of TradingVisions is to provide well-designed, money-making systems that trade a variety of futures markets, methodologies, and time-frames. TradingVisions is unique in that it produces day trading, swing trading, and long term position systems that effectively trade many markets. The most sensible approach to investing is to trade a number of systems over a variety of markets and time-frames, and I believe very strongly that through such an approach, investors/traders greatly increase their chances of withstanding the buffets of the marketplace. TradingVisions embodies this philosophy by allowing clients to create strong portfolios that meet all three criteria at a very reasonable lease or purchase fee. The majority of my clients are seasoned investors/traders who purchase my systems, preferring the freedom of trading whatever size and markets they choose.
John Gallwas: Is there any special reason why your Impetus system, that trades the Russell Index, has been one of the top day-trading systems in actual trading at Striker this year?
Lincoln Fiske: Impetus looks for a late-session breakout or retracement and return to a strong trend. I released the system in early January, 2003. It, too, places a high requirement on volatility, and therefore I also have moved its trading to the Russell e-mini. It generally captures smaller moves and consequently experiences lower drawdowns. Over the last several months it's done a good job of choosing trades carefully. Impetus ERL (mini Russell) is currently one of only two index systems in the Futures Truth top 20 of all systems over the last year, and its risk/reward ratio is excellent. The Russell is also an out-of-sample market for Impetus, proving its robustness.
John Gallwas: Your newest system is the AXIOM Index and Striker tracks trading in the S&P, MidCap, Russell, and NASDAQ versions. How do our results, which include trading cost and slippage, compare to your expectations and do you have any suggestions on the best way for traders to use the system?
Lincoln Fiske: I'm excited about the prospects for AXIOM Index, which I released in late April of this year. The system uses a unique confluence and mutual confirmation of trends to determine market direction, and it enters both on breakouts and retracements, swing trading a variety of indexes for periods of several days to weeks, depending upon the trend. This longer-term approach especially fits the current lower volatility environment, since it is not necessary to have high intraday ranges for successful trades: Trends taking several days can be captured.
Part of the logic that I especially like is AXIOM's stop strategy. I wanted a system that goes for larger, long-term trends, so I left the stops wide to give trades latitude. However, I was also able to build in a profit lock stop that quickly moves from the initial stop loss to a profit. From that point on, trades have a wide berth to follow the trend, and are then ideally captured by a profit objective. This yields a good percentage of winners (50-62%), excellent per-trade profits, and a healthy net profit, a combination which is difficult to find.
I've been very pleased with the post-release results, especially since the indexes over the last several months have been in a restricted trading range, with few strong moves. The best way to trade the system is as a portfolio of the four markets, S&P 500, Russell 2000, NASDAQ, and S&P Midcap. I recommend the e-minis, since they are more liquid and allow for more diversification with smaller accounts. An account size of $25,000 to $35,000 should be adequate to trade the four markets, which have low correlations. This combination yields a nicely trending equity curve, minimizing drawdowns and maximizing the risk/reward ratio. In my personal accounts, which I'm delighted to have at Striker, I trade AXIOM Index on the four markets, as well as Impetus ERL and EarlyBird III ERL. This makes for an especially strong combination.
AXIOM also works well on a number of global indexes, including the DAX, Kospi (S. Korea), and India Index. These out-of-sample markets help to validate the system's robustness, providing a reality check against excessive curve-fitting.
John Gallwas: As a dedicated student of the markets, we know you are always working on something. Do you have anything in the “what's new” department that you can share with us now?
Lincoln Fiske: I have three daytrading systems that I'm working on, one that uses a unique relationship between the open-high-low-close of intraday bars, one that uses ATR bands, and another that looks at volatility compressed within specific time constraints. I'm also in the middle of a project studying re-optimization cycles, looking for patterns of how optimized variables change over time. There's always more than enough to keep busy!
John Gallwas: Do you have any special offers for Striker clients?
Lincoln Fiske: Yes, I'd be glad to present two special offers, both of which emphasize the power of portfolios. The first fits a $15,000-20,000 account and trades AXIOM Index ERL (e-mini Russell 2000) and NQ (e-mini NASDAQ), and Impetus ERL. This is available to the first 25 Striker clients at $115/month lease fee (normally $125). The second is for a $30,000-35,000 account and adds to the above markets AXIOM Index ES (e-mini S&P) and EMD (e-mini Midcap), for a total of 5 contracts. This is available to the first 25 Striker clients at $155/month lease fee (normally $175). Details of these two portfolios may be viewed here. Be sure to mention the Striker Report for the discount.
Thanks for the opportunity to be interviewed, John.
This interview is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be
a solicitation of any kind. Trade only with risk capital. The risk of
trading can be substantial and each investor and/or trader must consider
whether trading systems are a suitable investment.
There is a risk of loss in trading. It is the nature of commodity and securities trading that where there is the opportunity for profit, there is also the risk of loss. Commodity trading involves a certain degree of risk, and may not be suitable for all investors. Derivative transactions, including futures, are complex and carry the risk of substantial losses. Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results. Please read additional risk matters on our web site, www.striker.com. It is important you understand all the risks involved with trading, and you should only trade with risk capital. This communication is intended for the sole use of the intended recipient.
About this report The information and links on this website are for informational purposes. The risk of trading can be substantial and each investor and/or trader must consider whether this is a suitable investment. Past performance, whether actual or indicated by simulated historical tests of strategies, is not indicative of future results. Striker is a member of the National Futures Association ("NFA"), the Managed Funds Association ("MFA"), and the National Introducing Broker Association ("NIBA"). Striker is registered with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission ("CFTC"), and was formerly registered with the Securities Exchange Commission ("SEC"). Additionally, Striker is a former member of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority ("FINRA"), and the Securities Investor Protection Corporation ("SIPC"). FINRA is the largest non-governmental regulator for all securities business in the United States. Please read Striker Disclosure Statement for the additional disclosure.
The trading performance cited throughout our web site is based on actual trading history, unless otherwise noted. The starting account balance is based on the system developer recommendation. Striker tracks actual performance by recording and maintaining each trade ticket for each system generated. The performance information assumes that no additions or withdrawals have been made. The rate of return for all systems disclosed in the Striker Report is cumulative from the day the system actually started trading at Striker. We maintain a "life" track for all 3rd party systems. We do not necessarily base our records on any particular client account. No one particular customer has achieved these results. The percentage returns reflect inclusion of commissions and fees.The actual percentage gains/losses experienced by investors will vary depending on many factors, including, but not limited to: starting account balances, market behavior, the duration and extent of investor participation (whether or not a client takes all signals for a system) in the specified system and money management techniques.
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