Economic Calendar

Economic Calendar

The Economic Calendar gives a real-time heads-up display of upcoming economic events on the main chart. In addition the economic calendar shows past events anchored to associated price action data. The illustration below shows a snapshot of the Economic Calendar in action for the EURUSD currency pair as of 29 June 2012.

 




Economic events are classified as one of:

  • All day event e.g. G7 or G20 summits.

  • Low volatility event, which has limited potential to move the markets.

  • Medium volatility event, which has real potential to move the markets.

  • High volatility event, which has the potential to move the markets significantly e.g. GDP announcements, central bank minutes, etc.

It should be noted that the potential of an economic event to move the markets is also dependant on prevailing market sentiment. This means that low volatility events can in certain conditions have a bigger than expected impact on the markets and vice versa for high volatility events.

Clearly the US and Chinese economies are the global powerhouses that all other economies are dependant on to varying extents. Economic data from these two economies is therefore weighted accordingly. This means that economic data from the US and China is normally tagged so that it appears on all currency pairs and commodities. Whereas data from other economic zones is normally tagged so that it appears on currency pairs relevant to each economic zone. High volatility events for all of the major economies are normally tagged so that they appear on all currency pairs and commodities.

Upcoming events are displayed on the main chart and are normally anchored to the bottom left. Upcoming events can also be anchored to other corners of the main chart or can be dragged via point and click to any area of the chart. The economic calendar displays upcoming events as follows:

 

Event Type

Display

Supplied Default Setting

All day event

Event day of the week followed by a description of the event.

Stays on the chart as an upcoming event for 24 hours for both supplied strategy files.

Low volatility event

(1) followed by minutes to event (and hours if required) followed by event description.

New upcoming events appear on the chart 60 minutes before the event is due and age 1 minute after the events due date/time if using FATS Economic calendar.txt.

If using FATS Economic calendar 8hr heads-up all.txt then new upcoming events appear on the chart 8 hours before the event is due and age 1 minute after the events due date/time.

Medium volatility event

(2) followed by minutes to event (and hours if required) followed by event description.

New upcoming events appear on the chart 90 minutes before the event is due and age 1 minute after the events due date/time if using FATS Economic calendar.txt.

If using FATS Economic calendar 8hr heads-up all.txt then same as Low volatility event.

High volatility event

(3) followed by minutes to event (and hours if required) followed by event description.

New upcoming events appear on the chart 2 hours before the event is due and age 1 minute after the events due date/time if using FATS Economic calendar.txt.

If using FATS Economic calendar 8hr heads-up all.txt then same as Medium volatility event.

 

The Supplied Default Settings described above can be substituted for trader specific requirements by creating new strategy files, which contain the required custom settings. This is explained fully in the accompanying instructions.

The time to upcoming events is updated real-time to give a clear visual reminder of the time remaining until the event data is due.

Past events are also displayed on the main chart by anchoring the event to the date and time. Past events can be shown by volatility or by event description. If past events are shown by event description then the event description is displayed vertically so that it reads from top to bottom. This enables the event to be aligned to date and time and gives the trader the ability to scroll back in time to view price action and economic event correlations. Because of the limitations associated with displaying past events (more than one event for the same asset and date/time) the economic calendar displays the event with the highest volatility.

Economic event data for the major currencies is prepared for the week ahead starting Sunday and is compiled from multiple sources. Economic events are checked daily for any updates that may impact the markets, such as sovereign bond auctions, and the data is updated accordingly. The major currencies by trading volume being USD, EUR, GBP, JPY, CHF, AUD, CAD and NZD. The Yuan is not yet a major currency from a trading point of view but the economic data coming out of China has the power to shake the markets and as such is included in the economic calendar. The data is compiled into a CSV .txt file, which is then made available via email or via this website. The economic calendar reads the file at start-up and loads the data into internal memory, and is subsequently used to give a heads-up in real-time as an aid to trading the markets.

The economic calendar software consists of:

  • An .ex4 indicator file, which handles the MT4 specific tasks of displaying the economic calendar data. Think of the .ex4 as the dashboard of a car. It makes essential information available in an easy to digest format but does none of the work to determine the data to be displayed.

  • A .dll file, which handles all of the processing. Think of the .dll as the engine of a car. It does all of the work to determine what data should be displayed and when, but does none of the work to display the data.

  • An input parameters .txt file, which contains basic configuration information such as the difference between local time and chart time.

  • Two .txt files, also known as strategy files, which determine the configuration of the economic calendar such as the name of the data file and the amount of time leading up to new events that should be used to display upcoming events. Higher volatility events are normally configured to give more notice than lower volatility events. The strategy file is the means by which the economic calendar can be tailored to suit individual needs.

  • An instrument symbol .txt file, which contains symbol mapping data to link the economic calendar data to broker specific instrument symbols.

  • An optional .csv file, which contains the economic calendar data in a format expected by the .dll. Date and time is Coordinated Universal Time and is converted to chart time by the software when loaded.

  • A .pdf file, which contains installation instructions and instructions for modifying the strategy file and the input parameters file to accommodate custom requirements and other time zones.

  • A copy of the terms and conditions governing use of the Software.

The software is made available free of charge subject to your acceptance of the terms and conditions governing use of the software. Click here to read the terms & conditions and to download the economic calendar software.