Global Symbol Settings


Introduction

The Global Symbol Settings window is a central repository for the available symbols for a Data or Trading service and the Tick Size, Price Display Format, Currency Value Per Tick, Price Multipliers, Intraday Session Times for Intraday charts, and various other settings for the symbols.

The settings can be defined for a specific symbol or for a symbol pattern. The symbols you see listed in File >> Find Symbol originate from the Global Settings >> Symbol Settings . Whatever symbol or symbol pattern is listed in Global Symbol Settings, will appear in Find Symbol , with the exception of unrecognized symbol patterns.

When you open a new Historical or Intraday chart, open a Trade DOM, change the symbol of a chart, or press the Apply Global Symbol Settings button on the Chart >> Chart Settings window, then the settings for a symbol defined in the Global Symbol Settings window will be applied to the Chart Settings automatically. These Global Symbol Settings provide a central location for Symbol Settings that can be used without having to manually set these for individual charts.

Sierra Chart provides a set of symbol settings for the most common symbols for each Data and Trading service we support.

Any changes that you make to the Global Symbol Settings under Global Settings >> Symbol Settings do not affect existing open charts. It is only when you open a new chart or Trade DOM, change the symbol of a chart, or press the Apply Global Symbol Settings button on the Chart >> Chart Settings window, do the settings get applied to a chart. Therefore, you have the ability to change any of the settings in Chart >> Chart Settings independent of the Global Symbol Settings for a symbol.

The settings for a symbol defined in the Global Symbol Settings window are also used for the Trade Activity Log and Trade Orders and Positions windows. If you change the settings for a particular symbol and that symbol is currently displayed in the Trade Activity Log, then select Edit >>Refresh Log on the Trade Activity Log menu to use the new settings.

Instructions

Sierra Chart provides symbol settings for many common symbols. To add symbols and the settings for those symbols, follow these instructions.

These instructions also apply to modifying existing settings for symbols in the Global Symbol Settings list.

  1. Select Global Settings >> Symbol Settings on the menu.
  2. Adding New Symbol: Press the Add button. You need to press the Add button before entering the symbol and the related settings. Alternatively you can select in the list of existing Symbols an individual symbol and press the Duplicate to duplicate the existing settings so you can use them as a template.
  3. Modifying Existing Symbol: To modify settings for an existing symbol, simply select the symbol in the Symbols list on the left.
  4. Enter or update the symbol or symbol pattern in the Symbol Pattern box. You can enter an actual symbol or a pattern that will match to many symbols. When using a pattern you must enable the Use Pattern Matching Characters option. Stock symbols are matched using the '?' patterns. There is an individual '?' that matches with each letter. So a three character stock symbol will have a ??? pattern.
  5. Enter the settings for the symbol or symbol pattern, on the various tabs.
  6. Repeat step 2 for additional symbols.
  7. Press the OK button.

Symbol Pattern Characters

The following characters can be used for pattern matching:

  • * = any character
  • ? = any alphabetical character
  • # = any digit.

When using a symbol pattern you must have the same number of characters in the Symbol Pattern as the actual symbol. For example, for a symbol pattern to match with the symbol ES-201009-GLOBEX, you must use ES-######-GLOBEX.

Duplicating Existing Settings for a Symbol

When you want to add Symbol Settings for a new symbol which is not already listed and it is similar to an existing symbol, then follow the below procedure.

Under some conditions this is an essential step to perform to get settings from an existing symbol that are not settable through the user interface or which may not be easily set.

  1. Select Global Settings >> Symbol Settings.
  2. Select an existing symbol in the list of symbols on the Global Symbol Settings window.
  3. Press the Duplicate button. A new symbol will be added to the list with "- Copy" at the end of it.
  4. Modify both the Symbol and other Symbol Settings as required. You will need to remove the "- Copy" text from the end of the Symbol make sure the symbol is a unique symbol in the list.
  5. Press OK.

Different Methods to Set Symbol Settings

There two different ways the Tick Size, Currency Value Per Tick, Price Display Format, Price Multiplier, Intraday Session Times for Intraday charts, Trade and Current Quote Symbol , and other settings can be set in Chart >> Chart Settings for a chart. These are described below.

  1. These settings can be manually set in Chart >> Chart Settings simply by modifying them.
  2. The preferred method is to use the Global Symbol Settings defined under Global Settings >> Symbol Settings to set these. There are two ways in which the settings are applied to a chart. When you open a new chart or Trade DOM, or change the symbol of a chart, if there are Global Symbol Settings defined for the symbol or there is a symbol pattern which matches the symbol of the chart, then they will be set from the Global Symbol Settings. The other way is to press the Apply Global Symbol Settings button on the Chart >> Chart Settings window. If there are Global Symbol Settings defined for the symbol or there is a symbol pattern which matches the symbol of the chart, then they will be applied from the Global Symbol Settings.

Also take note of Setting of Intraday Chart Session Times.

Global Symbol Settings Controls

This section documents each setting control on the Global Symbol Settings window. To open the Global Symbol Settings window select Global Settings >> Symbol Settings on the menu.

  • Full Reset: This will delete all of the Symbol Settings that currently exist and save them to a back-up file. Symbol Settings for the currently selected Service will be requested from the server.
  • Service: This list box selects the Data or Trading service to display Symbol Settings for.
  • Update From Server: This will request Symbol Settings for the currently selected service from the server, and update the settings for the symbols that there are settings for, and add any new symbols available.
  • Symbols List: This lists the symbols that have settings for the currently selected Data or Trading service. All of the settings on the tabs in this window are for the selected symbol in this list.
  • General >> Use Only For This Service: When this option is enabled, the Symbol Settings for the symbol apply only to the selected Data or Trading service. If this option is not enabled, then the Symbol Settings for the symbol apply to all services.
  • General >> Symbol: This is the symbol that the Symbol Settings are for. If Use Pattern Matching is enabled, then this can contain Pattern Matching characters. Pattern Matching Characters:
    * = any character
    ? = any alphabetical character
    # = any digit.
  • General >> Use Pattern Matching: When this option is enabled, then you can enter pattern matching characters in the Symbol that will support matching to many different actual symbols.
  • General >> Contract Months (For Futures): In the case of a Futures symbol, enable the contract months that the Futures symbol has contracts for. Each contract month is represented by a single letter code. These are standard codes which are listed in the Futures Contract Month Codes section.
  • General >> Description: This is the descriptive name for the symbol.
  • General >> Price Display Format: This sets the Display Format for all price values for the symbol.
  • General >> Tick Size: This is the minimum value that the price values for the symbol change by. For example, the ES Futures has a tick size of 0.25, assuming there are 2 decimal places in the quoted prices for the market. For Stocks, this would usually be set to 0.01. In the case of Foreign exchange symbols, there is no definite Tick Size to use. You will need to set this according to your charting and trading requirements. By default for the EURUSD we use .00005. You may want to use .0001. Or you may want to use .00001. All order prices are rounded to the nearest Tick Size upon order submission. When changing the Tick Size for a foreign exchange symbol, then also verify you have the proper Currency Value Per Tick setting to correspond to it.
  • General >> Currency Value Per Tick: This is the value that each tick is worth in the currency for the particular symbol being traded. For example, if a Futures Contract is equivalent to a 1000 units of the underlying that the contract is for, then this should be set to 1000 times the Tick Size. For a COMEX Gold Contract which is equivalent to 100 ounces of gold and has a Tick Size of 0.1, the Currency Value Per Tick will be 10. In the case of foreign exchange symbols, where the order quantities match the actual number of currency units being traded, then Currency Value Per Tick must match the Tick Size. In order to trade 10,000 units of a particular currency, you have to use order quantity of 10000, then Currency Value Per Tick always needs to be set to the same value as the Tick Size. CurrencyProfitLoss = PointsProfitLoss / TickSize * CurrencyValuePerTick.
  • General >> Real-Time Price Multiplier: This sets the multiplier that the real time prices from the connected service for the symbol are multiplied by.
  • General >> Default Order Quantity: This sets the initial order quantity for the Trade Window for a Trade DOM or for a chart. Whenever you open a new chart or Trade DOM, this will be the order quantity. In the list box for the Quantity on the Trade Window, the listed quantities will also be in increments of this Default Order Quantity.
  • Historical >> Historical Chart Symbol: This is the symbol for a Historical Daily chart, when the data for Historical Daily charts comes from an alternate service. This symbol corresponds to the Symbol for the primary Data or Trading service.
  • Historical >> Historical Chart Multiplier: This is the multiplier that needs to be applied to the Historical Daily data to match the price format for the corresponding Symbol used by the primary Data or Trading service.
  • Intraday >> Time Zone: This specifies the time zone for the Intraday chart Session Times specified on this tab of the Global Symbol Settings window. For example, if the Session Times are defined in New York time, then this needs to be set to the New York Times own. This does not have to match the Time Zone setting in Sierra Chart. When these Session Times are applied to a chart, then the Session Times will be converted from this time zone to the Time Zone setting in Sierra Chart.

    You should specify what Time Zone the Session Times are relative to, by selecting a Time Zone from the list. In this way you can always be assured that the correct Session Times will be set even if you change the Sierra Chart global Time Zone setting. Otherwise, select Not Specified (this is the default).

    It needs to be understood that this Time Zone setting does not specify the time zone that you want times displayed as in the charts for the symbol that this setting is for. Sierra Chart has a single Time Zone setting set through Global Settings >> Data/Trade Service Settings that sets the Time Zone to display times in. This setting only indicates what Time Zone the Session Times set in the Global Symbol Settings for the symbol, are relative to.
  • Intraday >> Session Start Time: This is the Start Time used for Intraday charts for the symbol.
  • Intraday >> Session End Time: This is the End Time used for Intraday charts for the symbol.
  • Intraday >> Evening Start Time: This is the Evening Session Start Time used for Intraday charts for the symbol.
  • Intraday >> Evening End Time: This is the Evening Session Stop Time used for Intraday charts for the symbol.
  • Intraday >> Start New Daily Bar at Session Start: When this option is enabled for the symbol or symbol pattern, then in the case of Historical Charts (Daily, Weekly, Monthly, ...), when the Start Time for the trading day is encountered, a new Daily bar will begin at that time if there has been market data received after that time. This will be either the Session Start Time, or the Evening Start Time if the Evening Start Time and the Evening End Time are set to values other than 00:00:00 and 00:00:00 or 00:00:00 and 23:59:59, respectively.
  • Intraday >> Record Market Depth Data: When this option is enabled for the symbol or symbol pattern, then market depth data will be recorded in data files with a depth file extension, 1 for each day, any time Intraday data is being recorded for the symbol which matches the symbol or symbol pattern. These depth files are located in the MarketDepthData subfolder of the Data Files Folder. All market depth updates are recorded without any filtering.
  • Rollover >> Rollover Rule: For future symbols, a rollover rule can be defined for the symbol which will automatically rollover the futures symbol in a chart or Quote Board when it no longer is the actively traded contract ( Chart >> Chart Settings >> Automatically Rollover Futures Symbol. These settings are also used in the building of Continuous Futures Contract charts. The possible rollover rules are:

    • Number Of Business Days Before Contract Month
    • Number Of Business Days Before First Business Day Of Contract Month
    • Number Of Calendar Days Before Friday Count Within Contract Month
    • Number Of Business Days Before Wednesday Count Within Contract Month
    • Number Of Business Days Before Specific Business Day Before Contract Month
    • Number Of Business Days Before Specific Calendar Days Before Contract Month
    • Number of Business Days before Business Calendar Day in Contract Month
    • Last Thursday Of The Contract Month
    • Thursday Count Within Contract Month

    For each of the rollover rules, there may be 1 or 2 boxes displayed below them to specify additional values for the rollover rule.

    To automatically rollover a symbol of the chart, it is necessary to enable Chart >> Chart Settings >> Automatically Rollover Futures Symbol. For additional information, refer to Automatically Rollover Futures Symbol.

  • Rollover >> Continuous Contract: These contract months are optional and are used to set the particular contract months to build the Continuous Futures Contract from independently from the standard contract months for a particular futures market.
  • Additional >> Category: This is the category that the symbol belongs to. This is for organizing symbols in the File >> Find Symbol window. All symbols in the category specified here will be grouped together into this category.
  • Additional >> Round Turn Commission: The Round Turn Commission field specifies the commission value as a currency value for a complete trade which includes both Buy and Sell order fills.

    This commission is multiplied by the Quantity of the order fills. So if the Quantity of the order fills is 5, then the commission is multiplied by 5.

    The Round Turn Commission applies to either the Symbol or Symbol pattern.

    This Round Turn Commission value is used in the Trade >> Trade Activity Log Profit/Loss calculations when Apply Commission is enabled on the Trade Activity Log window. The commission is not used in the Profit/Loss calculations within the Chart, Trade DOM, or Trade Windows. The Round Turn Commission does not apply to the Trade Activity tab or Trade Stats for Charts tab of the Trade Activity Log since there are no Profit/Loss fields or the data originates from a chart
  • Additional >> Symbol Service ID: This sets the identifier used by some external data or trading services for the Symbol. This setting has a specialized purpose and it is not a setting that the user normally would use.
  • Additional >> Currency: This sets the currency for the selected Symbol. This setting has a specialized purpose and it is not a setting that the user normally would use.
  • Additional >> Trade and Current Quote Symbol: This specifies the corresponding Trade and Current Quote Symbol which will be automatically set with the Symbol in Chart >> Chart Settings. Normally it will only make sense to set this when the Symbol is not a pattern.
  • Internal >> Auto Set Tick Size and Value Format from Data Feed: The default for this option is unchecked/false. Normally this should be disabled by default and the Tick Size, Price Display Format and Currency Value Per Tick should be properly set for the symbol or symbol pattern in the Global Symbol Settings. When this option is enabled, and these settings are available from the connected data feed, then they will be automatically set for the symbol in the Chart Settings of a chart and ignore the Global Symbol Settings.
  • Internal >> Record Bid/Ask Average: when this option is enabled, then the average of the Bid and Ask prices are recorded/stored in the Intraday data file for a symbol as these prices change, went Intraday data recording is occurring. This is instead of the last trade price. The only reason that this would be used is in the case of Forex symbols which only have Bid and Ask prices and not a last trade price. This is an internal setting used by Sierra Chart and should not be changed by a user.
  • New button: Press this button to add a new entry to the Symbols list. You need to press New before entering the settings for a new symbol.
  • Duplicate button: Press this button to duplicate the settings for an existing symbol in the Symbols list. This is useful to create a similar set of settings for different symbol. The settings will be duplicated for the highlighted symbol in the Symbols list.
  • Remove button: Press this button to delete the symbol and the settings for the selected symbol in the Symbols list.
  • Apply Intraday Session Times To Intraday Chart: When this option is enabled and you change the symbol of an Intraday chart, or you press the Apply Global Symbol Settings button in Chart Settings , then the Intraday Session Times will be applied to that chart. Otherwise, if this option is disabled this will not occur.

    If this option is disabled, you can still enable this feature for individual charts in Chart >> Chart Settings >> Advanced Settings >> Apply Intraday Session Times to Intraday Chart .
  • Overwrite Existing Settings When Automatically Updating From The Server: When this option is enabled, which is the default, then whenever symbol settings are received from the Sierra Chart server, the settings will be updated and overwritten with what is received. Disable this option to prevent this. You would want to disable this option if you have made changes to the default settings and want to keep those changes.
  • Use Symbol Settings in New Instances When Started : When this option is enabled, when File >> New Instance is used to start a new instance of Sierra Chart, then the Global Symbol Settings from the main instance the new instance is started from, are copied to the new instance. The new instance uses these Global Symbol Settings. This is useful to make sure the customized settings you have set in the main instance are used by all of the sub instances. The default for this option is disabled.

Setting of Intraday Chart Session Times

When opening a new Intraday chart, the Session Times in Chart >> Chart Settings will always be set according to the Session Times set for the symbol in Global Settings >> Symbol Settings.

When changing the symbol of an Intraday chart, the Session Times will be set from the Global Symbol Settings if either of these options are enabled:

  • Global Settings >> Symbol Settings >> Apply Intraday Session Times to Intraday Chart.
  • Chart >> Chart Settings >> Advanced Settings >> Apply Intraday Session Times to Intraday Chart.

Preventing the Changing of Intraday Chart Session Times

To prevent the Session Times from being changed when the symbol of an Intraday chart is changed, do the following:

  1. Make sure Global Settings >> Symbol Settings >> Apply Intraday Session Times to Intraday Chart is unchecked.
  2. Make sure Chart >> Chart Settings >> Advanced Settings >> Apply Intraday Session Times to Intraday Chart is unchecked.

Applying Global Symbol Settings to Existing Intraday Chart

  1. Go to the Intraday chart that you want to apply the Global Symbol Settings to.
  2. Select Chart >> Chart Settings >> Advanced Settings. Make sure the Apply Intraday Session Times to Intraday Chart option is enabled.
  3. Press the Apply button.
  4. Select the Main Settings tab.
  5. Press the Apply Global Symbol Settings button.
  6. Press OK

Update Global Symbol Settings

To update all of the available Symbol related settings for the currently selected Data/Trading service, from the Sierra Chart server, follow one of the procedures below.

Update Symbol Settings

  1. Select Global Settings >> Symbol Settings on the menu.
  2. Do not change the Service setting. It needs to be left at the current setting which will match the Data/Trading service you are currently using.
  3. Press Update From Server button. The button will be momentarily disabled.
  4. Wait for the button to reenable which indicates the updating of the symbol settings is complete. Normally the updating should be done in less than 5 seconds. However, this could take longer depending upon the speed of your Internet connection, how much data has to be downloaded and how many existing symbols there are. It should not take longer than 30 seconds unless you have a connectivity problem.
  5. When the update is complete, press OK.
  6. Reconnect to the data feed by selecting File >> Disconnect and File >> Connect to Data Feed.

Full Reset of Symbol Settings

It is supported to completely clear all of the symbol settings for all of the supported Data/Trading services and download settings for the currently selected Data/Trading service. It is not recommended that you do this unless there is a specific reason to do so or you have been directed by Sierra Chart support to do this. Here are the instructions:

  1. Select Global Settings >> Symbol Settings on the menu.
  2. Press the Full Reset button.
  3. Press OK when prompted. The list of symbols will be cleared.
  4. Wait for the symbol list to fill back up with symbols. Normally this should be completed in less than 5 seconds. However, this could take longer depending upon the speed of your Internet connection and how much data has to be downloaded. It should not take longer than 30 seconds unless you have a connectivity problem.
  5. When the update is complete, press OK.
  6. Reconnect to the data feed by selecting File >> Disconnect and File >> Connect to Data Feed.

Update/Apply Symbol Settings to Charts

Once the update of the Global Symbol Settings is complete using the Update Global Symbol Settings or Full Reset of Symbol Settings methods, the individual charts and Trade DOM windows that you already have open, may need to have the new Symbol Settings applied to them.

This will only be necessary if Sierra Chart support has instructed you to do so. Generally the reason why this would be necessary is if the Tick Size, Value Format, or the multipliers in the Symbol Settings have changed.

  1. Optional: If you want to apply the Intraday Session Times to the charts as defined in the Global Symbol Settings, then select Global Settings >> Symbol Settings. Enable the Apply Intraday Session Times to Intraday Chart option and press OK. Otherwise, make sure this option is disabled.
  2. Go to each chart and Trade DOM window for the particular symbols there is incorrect Symbol Settings for and select Chart >> Chart Settings on the menu.
  3. Press the Apply Global Symbol Settings button.
  4. Press OK.
  5. In the case of the Historical Daily charts which also includes Weekly, Monthly, Quarterly, Yearly chart bars, it is necessary to re-download the data if the chart bars are not displaying correctly relative to the last bar in the chart. To do this, select Edit >> Delete All Data and Download.
  6. Repeat the above steps for each Chart and Trade DOM that you have an issue with, which relates to the Symbol Settings.

Direct Editing of Global Symbol Settings through Underlying File

The Global Symbol Settings are stored in the GlobalSymbolSettings.XML file located in the folder where Sierra Chart is installed to on your system.

This section explains how to edit this file but provides no further information on any undocumented fields.

It is assumed that you have an understanding of the Extensible Markup Language (XML).

  1. Exit from Sierra Chart with File >> Exit. Sierra Chart must not be run while editing the file.
  2. Go to the folder that Sierra Chart is installed to on your system.
  3. In that folder, you will see the GlobalSymbolSettings.XML file.
  4. Open this file in the text editor of your choice.
  5. Perform the edits that you require in the file. You can modify symbol settings. You can add a new symbol by adding the new symbol settings for it by modeling them similar to the settings for other existing symbols. You can remove symbol settings for particular symbols.
  6. The settings for a particular Data/Trading Service are identified by a service code. This is the tag: <service-code></service-code>. All Symbol Settings for a particular symbol need to have this tag specifying the Service they are for.
  7. There is no need to set this if it is the same as the Symbol: <trade-and-current-quote-symbol></trade-and-current-quote-symbol>

*Last modified Friday, 25th November, 2016.