What is PineScript?
It is a lightweight scripting language which is not very sophisticated but allows you to do some powerful things with your charts, such as create or customize indicators and tools, back-test strategies and (my personal favorite) — create trading signal alerts.
You do not need to have prior programming experience in order to use PineScript, although it certainly helps. I have over 10 years’ experience in coding software and computer games from my past life before I became a trader, and I must admit, it has been a very useful skill to have.
As traders, we must do everything we can to maintain our edge in the markets. Using code and scripts for automation is one way of dramatically enhancing your edge.
With all the tools I have created over the years it feels like I have a second pair of eyes on the market at all times – which means there’s not as much pressure to keep my own on them all the time.
What Are the Benefits of PineScript?
Before I begin my PineScript lessons, here is a list of the benefits you will get from learning how to code:
- Reduce your required screen-time
- Reduce anxiety over missing setups when you are busy
- Systematize your setups into an objective rules-based process
- Dramatically improve back-testing efficiency and speed
- Test strategies over hundreds of trades in seconds with the click of a button
- Enhance or customize existing indicators to suit your needs
- Detect large spikes in volume or ATR (useful for stocks and crypto)
- Create custom indicators and oscillators
- Paint useful information like Stop Loss and Take Profit directly to your chart
- Automate parts of your trading process or analysis
- Create trade management tools (eg. Trailing stop loss calculation tools)
- Turn existing indicators into alerts (eg. Whenever RSI goes overbought)
- Gain a better understanding of the mechanics of price action
- Gain a better understanding of how automated trading works
- Find comfort in knowing that you have a robot on your side
If you are entirely new to programming and have never written a line of code in your life, then you may want to learn some of the absolute basics first.
I will do my best to explain the concepts to you, but if I miss something or what I say does not make sense, then try searching for some basic programming courses.
A great website to learn the fundamentals is W3Schools.com. I would recommend starting with the Python tutorial because Python is a popular programming language for traders and trading systems (and is very similar to PineScript in its style).
W3Schools have a great free course on Python and other popular programming languages which you can find by clicking here.
You really have nothing to lose by learning to code. In the lessons to follow, I will teach you what I know about PineScript.
Click here to see my list of TradingView indicators