Newcomer Level

Installing The Bourse software was easy, with typical computer-aided installation. The application ran slightly faster after the upgraded version (6.6) was downloaded during the review period, and there were never any problems with the program crashing. Data import was swift, especially with the use of a satellite Internet connection.

The beginners’ tutorial enables you to get started immediately, and gives a good basic introduction to The Bourse. In less than an hour it is possible to have loaded a watch list and to be performing technical analysis on your selected stocks.

Setting up and modifying watch lists was simple, and the ability to customise column headings a nice touch. However, this facility does not appear to extend to chart titles. Creating charts and applying studies is straightforward, but while there are a good number of studies available, it is not possible to apply customised studies. This may limit its use for the serious technical analyst.

Stock splits and share issues are handled properly, with no distortions in price.

Screen layout can be customised. However the standard ‘MDI’ layout effectively combines a watch list with market depth and a chart without being too cluttered. One little annoying feature is the need to push ‘request’ each time you want something to happen, rather than it happening automatically. Synchronisation of the screen is a good feature, as it lets you look at depth and chart for all stocks in a watch list.

A feature I’m not a fan of is the use of the letters ‘T’ and ‘M’ to refer to ‘thousands’ or ‘millions’ of shares on bid/offer columns of market depth. The letters make it harder to compare the figures at first glance than would be the case if the actual numbers were used.

The full list of toolbar icons and shortcuts in the back of the manual is handy, as is the quick reference guide that comes in the software box. After-sales service was excellent, but then the service team was aware that I was doing a review!

The Bourse software can be used either with end-of-day data or with live data. A nifty feature of the upgraded version is that charts automatically reflect the most recent price if using the live data feed.

Intermediate Level

The Bourse was easy to install and came with a well-written reference manual. It has technical support available weekdays during Australian business hours. For new users there is a ‘getting started’ tutorial and comprehensive help, although the help is not context sensitive.

You log in on the start page and the software fires up with a sample layout. I found I could create as many pages as I liked, firstly by getting it to look just right and then saving the layout. These pages can then be retrieved at any time to suit the different views required. For example, if you are trading different types of instruments such as equities (ASX and US), options, warrants or futures you may want to look at them in different ways. You can view any combination along with charts, watch lists, market depth, company profiles, news reports, currency cross rates and web pages. Online trading is built-in through AOT brokers.

Data is supplied exclusively by Bourse Data. However, you can customise the package and pay only for what you want. You can choose packages with end-of-day, live data, snapshot or dynamic streaming with or without ETOs. The data can be exported into a variety of formats.

Virtually all the popular indicators are included, and you are able to specify your own parameters. I found any combination could be used on each chart and saved as a style. However you cannot programme your own indicators and Bourse Scan is not included. You can specify up to eight colour choices for each indicator using a 64- colour palette. Custom toolbars can be created and moved to any edge. All windows can be synchronised to change simultaneously as you select different securities. The software also has a nice feature of remembering all your analysis lines and comments if you wish, independently for each security.

The Bourse has many advantages over browser-based packages. It is highly flexible, stable and is quick to respond. Once set up to work your way, it is quite effortless to use.

Experienced Level

Traders interact with the markets in their own ways. According to the manner in which they trade, all have different requirements of the software packages that will assist them in identifying opportunities.

For traders who use fundamental data to determine stock choices and then use technical analysis as a means of timing their entry, The Bourse provides an excellent resource. The platform is easy to use and effectively places at your fingertips what would otherwise take hours of extensive research. Minute-to-minute news from two separate sources is also available.

As a charting package, The Bourse has a couple of nice features for Gann followers, with both Gann angles and a nifty retracement measurement tool. There are a number of easily customised popular indicators, with a choice of either a logarithmic or an arithmetic scale on charts. The charts can be viewed over a variety of times from monthly to tick data. Standard charting features, like the choice between bar, candlestick and point and figure charts, are all included. However, The Bourse does not include a programming language that would enable you to define your own proprietary indicators, nor does it provide any back-testing facility. This makes it very simple to use, but limits its capacity for those traders seeking a full system design package.

Options traders will find The Bourse an excellent source of live price data. It is very easy to establish what is happening with both the option and the underlying. You can view price information through a series of open windows that can be seen simultaneously in a format of your choice. Other windows display sector performance. There is a ‘top movers’ list and a handy pull-down menu that displays market depth on a stock in real time.

As I trade mainly stocks, my personal requirements for a software package include a comprehensive scanning facility, which, unfortunately, The Bourse lacks. I understand that it is possible to purchase an add-on product called ‘Bourse Scan’, which would enable searches to be made based on both fundamental and price criteria.

The Bourse comes with a comprehensive manual and a tutorial. However, I found these hardly necessary, as simple experimentation quickly led to easy and comfortable use of the system.

In summary, I found The Bourse to be an easy-to-use software package that would be of assistance to a variety of traders with different investment needs.

The Bourse Response

It is always difficult to review a comprehensive market information and research service thoroughly in such a short time, but congratulations to the reviewers on doing such a fine job.

The first reviewer uses a satellite broadband connection and was impressed with the speed of the service. We designed the service for extremely fast delivery on dial-up access. Delayed, Snapshot and Dynamic intra-day data is transmitted only as needed. End-of-day data is stored on your local hard drive automatically while you do your research – no need to wait for downloads to finish before doing your research and analysis.

Two reviewers commented on the lack of capacity to “programme” custom indicators. We have focussed on making analysis simple – and thus more effective. Most custom indicators are covered through the 37 indicators included in the software. Practically speaking, many traders don’t want to programme at such a complex level.

One reviewer found the abbreviation of numbers with ‘T’ and ‘M’ in the market depth disappointing. Like many features in The Bourse, this is fully customisable. A right mouse-click in the market depth displays the option to use normal numbers.

As pointed out, our after-sales service is excellent. It is one of the key factors that distinguish Bourse Data. We delight in helping our customers realise the full potential of our software and services. We go further by offering cost-effective training services exclusively to our customers.

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