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Developer/CTA Interview
Morgan Tuck
Founder, SystematicSignals
Program(s) Developed: Battalion, Brigade, Saturn, Charge, Archer, Crossbow and Flipper
Interview Date: September, 2008
Interviewed by John F. Gallwas - Founder of Striker Securities
Morgan Tuck is a self-taught student of the markets who, because of his non-financial background found that he could think "outside-the box" in the development of viable trading systems. As a result he has not only developed the trading systems listed above, but combined the systems into 13 portfolios requiring from $15,000 to $250,000. Mr. Tuck is the owner of Systematic Signals, the marketing organization for his trading systems.
John Gallwas: Tell our readers what led you to being able to think "outside-the box" when developing trading systems.

Morgan Tuck: There's nothing new or unique about what I have done. Over a period of years I simply took a few good concepts and kept twisting and turning them around till I either found something good enough to work with, or something so bad I could do the opposite. I am a true student of the markets and it's my dedication and above all persistence that finally came through.

John Gallwas: What futures markets are the seven systems listed above designed to trade?

Morgan Tuck: My primary market is the ES. Although Charge can trade on almost any index and Flipper trades on the ER and EM. The reason I focus on ES is liquidity which allows for less slippage as well as greater growth than other markets.

John Gallwas: Is there a common trading theory for your trading systems or are they all based on different parameters?

Morgan Tuck: There are three basic systems that I use. The first being my Charge system which is based on market internals, specifically the advancing issues and declining issues on the NYSE to determine market direction. It took a few years to build it into what it is today and I consider the system one of my greatest accomplishments.

The second is Battalion. I found this system when working on a moving average system that failed so awesomely that I reversed the idea and created the basis for Battalion and the parameters that I have been using for the better part of 5 years now. This development led to several combinations of systems like using Battalion and Charge to launch Archer, and the more leveraged version Crossbow. By using channels I added Brigade and Saturn.

The third system is Flipper which uses the previous days range to determine next days break-out and trailing stop for exit and/or reversal. Flipper works best when it is combined my other systems in portfolios.

The combining of systems has enabled me to provide trading programs for smaller account sizes, that will automatically adjust as profit objectives are reached. This gives the small account the ability to compound their results more aggressive without swapping trading systems. For the larger account it provides a layering effect so that a trader?s position size can be matched to the probability of a profitable trade.

The three core methods are all very different from one another, which I believe is why we have enjoyed great success with our portfolios to date. Of course, there can be no guarantees that this past performance will be repeated in the future.

John Gallwas: You are one of the few system vendors that offer portfolios of trading system based on account sizes. Tell us why you offer portfolios and what a potential customer should know about your portfolio program?

Morgan Tuck: I believe that low draw-downs are one of the more important aspects of trading, and a portfolio of trading system using different parameters is the key. The three diverse methods I developed have proven to be ideal for portfolio construction because they can be layered into various size portfolios ranging in size from $15K to $250K. To encourage the portfolio approach our system pricing encouraged diversifying across our systems because we do not charge per system, instead we charge in increments of total contracts. This way the trader is not penalized for diversification. I feel that our whole approach to portfolios is a huge part of our success at SystematicSignals.

John Gallwas: Is there anything in "What's New" that you care to share with our readers at this time?

Morgan Tuck: While I am always working on my existing code to look for ways to upgrade the existing trading system, I plan to work on another technical area called "pattern recognition". I feel that there are chart formations that can generate good trading signals and it is my next goal to see if I can find a way to build a trading system using these patterns.

SystematicSignals -Trading System List:
  1. Battalion Trading System ? Uses multiple price proxies to isolate periods when the market has consolidated to the point where low-risk trading signals can be generated.
  2. Brigade Trading System - An alternative version of Battalion that is less aggressive, and with profitable trading, provides a stepping stone to Saturn.
  3. Saturn Trading System - Based on the same logic as Battalion, the system introduces additional patterns to allow for expanded trading opportunities. .
  4. Charge Index system ? A basic trading system that goes long when advancing issues are greater than declining issues and short when the opposite occurs.
  5. Archer Trading System - Based on Archer as well as Battalion logic but is further enhanced with aspects of Charge to further increase net profitability.
  6. Crossbow Trading System ? Takes same concept of Archer and by putting more power in the contract filter adjusts contracts traded to probability of success.
  7. Flipper Trading System ? Uses previous days range to determine next days break-out and trailing stop for exit and/or reversal.
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.
In This Issue:
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Author, Trading System Developer
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