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NinjaTrader is a excellent futures and forex charting platform and brokerage service. It’s also a very cost effective trading platform solution for traders of all levels. In this post I’d like to break down and discuss how much does Ninjatrader cost.
In this post I’ll discuss the various options for using and purchasing the platform. I’ll explain how to access the platform for free. I’ll also discuss why purchasing the Ninjatrader platform is the best option for trading live markets and finally I’ll breakdown all the platform costs and other trading fees to consider.
Let get into it…
Table of Contents
Is NinjaTrader really free?
NinjaTrader offers all its core essentials for free through a free or demo account. These services include advanced charting, market analysis, simulated trading, and live trading data.
However, the free account does not offer several really useful advanced features such as live placement of trades using the chart trader, Hotkeys, Enhanced DOM, order flow and is subject to heftier trading fees.
Essentially, at the free level, you will get access to the tools for trade analysis and demo trading. But if your planning to day trade live. Then upgrading to a paid plan is essential in my opinion!
If you trade over longer periods of time, and don’t require any of the Trader+ features. Then the free platform does offer a really nice charting tools and indicators and you can place trades off chart without the chart trader function.
For free accounts a minimum brokerage funding amount of $400 for futures or $50 for forex accounts is required.
If you want to simply want to trial the platform and demo trade no brokerage account is required. However you’ll only be offered 2 weeks of free live data that can be renewed once per email address.
Downloading the free trading platform
If the free account features are suitable for your needs, click here to get the NinjaTrader platform trading software for free.
Simply type in your email address then click the download button. See black box above.
A short form will pop-up that includes fields on first name, last name, phone, country, and asset class for desired live market data.
For a detailed guide on downloading the NinjaTrader platform, check out my previous post at the link. to my previous post.
For a detailed guide to opening a NinjaTrader demo account, see my previous post.
What are the other license options?
If you plan to day trade live using the platform. Then the benefits of upgrading to either the lease or the lifetime subscription options make it almost essential in my opinion. This is of course dependent on your strategy and trading style.
Most day traders will find the benefits of the on chart trading feature essential. This is only available with either of the paid subscription for live trading.
There are also other relevant costs associated with NinjaTrader, such as administrative, exchange, and commissions.
We will discuss these costs in the following sections.
How much does it cost to start using NinjaTrader?
NinjaTrader offers free access to the platforms basic features plus on chart trading through its demo account. However, for live trading, on chart trading and other premium features, are only available by leasing and purchasing the lifetime subscription.
See an overview of the pricing and feature inclusions of lease and purchasing/owing NinjaTrader license.
Core Essentials: Advanced charting Market analysis. Simulated trading. On chart trading for demo only.
Annual: $720 Semi-annual: $425 Quarterly: $225 (Auto renewal)
Leasing the license grants access to core essentials plus:
One-time payment: $1,0994 monthly installments: $329
Purchasing the lifetime license entitles you to the core essentials, Trader + and:
Note that pricing is as of writing. For up-to-date NinjaTarder pricing, see the link.
How much is NinjaTrader monthly?
There are no monthly payment options for platform lease subscriptions. The shortest duration is quarterly.
Monthly installment options are available by purchasing the lifetime subscription license. These are made in 4 monthly payments of $329. If you prefer this option its important to note that this is equivalent to a total cost of $1316 or $200 more than a one off payment.
The lease option is currently (at time of writing) $720 per year. This is only available as a one time payment option. However for the sake of comparison this equates to a monthly cost of $60 per month. Which is very competitive relative to other quality trading platforms available today.
Note that pricing is as of writing. For up-to-date NinjaTrader cost, see the link.
In addition to these costs, NinjaTrader also has trading fees. We’ll discuss these in the following section.
How much are NinjaTrader account and exchange fees?
NinjaTrader also offers brokerage account services. Its brokerage will grant access to live trading via NinjaTrader.
To get this access, you will need to first signup for a separate brokerage account. See my previous post on Opening a NinjaTrader Brokerage Account to learn how to get started.
NinjaTrader offers access to both futures and forex brokers. NinjaTrader offers its own brokerage services for Futures through Dorman and Phillips Capital and Forex through Oanda and Forex.com
For a full list of other Brokerage services for Ninjatrader see the link.
For the most part maintaining a NinjaTrader brokerage account is free.
There are however a handful of administrative and management fees that are worth being aware of.
Important administrative fees you want to be aware of is the ‘Minimum account activity fee’. If you don’t trade during the month you’ll be charge this fee. At the time of writing this was $25. But check the link above for the most up to date fees.
This includes any withdrawal, deposit or conversion fees. These can all add up so its a good idea to take note of these!
Trade Management fees
Trade management fees include any margin calls or Margin & delivery liquidation violations.
The Ninjatrader Emergency trade desk is an excellent fee service.
Exchange Data Fees
Data fees will depend on the exchange and whether your account is labeled as non-professional or professional.
NinjaTrader brokerages support CME market data for CME, CBOT, NYMEX & COMEX. ICE Market Data for ICE US, ICE EU Financials and Eurex for NinjaTrader continuum.
For a full list of exchange fees offered by NinjaTrader see the link.
NinjaTrader follows CME self-certification to classify applicants as professional/non-professional.
For more information on NinjaTrader’s distinction between professional and non-professional users click the link.
How much does NinjaTrader charge per trade?
NinjaTrader’s futures trading fees are broken down into 3 components. These include an exchange and NFA fee, Routing fee and Ninjatrader commission.
Here is an overview of the trade charges:
Overview or fee
Exchange & NFA
Exchange fees per contract will vary per exchange and security
By default, all accounts use Continuum order routing. Quoted fees are for Continuum; additional fees may apply for other order routing technology.
Commission (license options)
Commission costs will vary depending on the selected platform license.
The trading fee is the sum of these 3 items. Round trip fees are double this sum.
To view the detailed quotes, see the most up to date NinjaTrader’s Futures Trade Costs see the link
Ninjatrader Forex fees include the spread and a commission fee depending on the platform license.
To view the detailed quotes, see the most up to date NinjaTrader’s Forex Trade costs see the link.
Does NinjaTrader have commission?
Yes, NinjaTrader’s commissions vary depending on the Ninjatrader platform subscription option also type of security and lot / contract size.
All NinjaTrader futures e-mini and full contracts have the following commissions at the time of writing. Micro contracts are less:
Forex spread fees vary depending on the instrument. NinjaTarders Forex commissions per 1K lot size are based on the type of platform subscription:
Note: all prices are at time of writing for the most up to date pricing list see the links.
Is NinjaTrader worth buying?
NinjaTrader is a one-stop shop for futures and forex traders needs.
The simplicity of an all in one trading platform and brokerage service instantly gives it an edge over many of its competitors.
NinjaTrader 8 offers features suitable for any trader regardless of experience level.
The platform is generally easy to use. It may take some users a little time to get used to navigating around the platform. But once familiar the charts are easy to manipulate. There is an excellent selection of tools and indicators that are all simple to use.
Another great benefit of Ninjatrader is its well regarded and popular within he retail trading industry. You will find most futures traders and many forex traders will be familiar with the platform.
If you’ve trialed a demo of the platform and now plan to trade live. Then in my opinion Ninjatrader is worth buying.
The upgraded lease and lifetime options offer essential live trading features such as the on-chart trader that aren’t available with the free plan.
If you plan to trade on a regular basis then the Ninjatrader cost commission savings of the lifetime plan could make it worth buying for many users.
NinjaTrader Pros and Cons
NinjaTrader: Is it worth it?
Overall, NinjaTrader is worth considering as a one-stop shop for all your trading needs.
Choosing between free account and getting the license is matter of trade frequency, budget, and your level of tolerance when it comes to convenience.
From a lease versus purchase perspective, however, paying the one-time fee is a good option as you’ll save on platform costs in the long run, and trade commissions on the short term.
If you’d like to learn more on how NinjaTrader fares from the perspective of its competitors, visit my previous posts: NinjaTrader versus TradingView, NinjaTrader versus TradeStation, NinjaTrader versus MultiCharts