Ninjatrader Brokerage Review

If you’ve considered getting into futures or forex trading at all, you’ve probably heard of Ninja Trader. Because it has an open-source framework, it has thousands of add-on apps and hundreds of developers working on it constantly.

For this reason, it’s very popular. But is Ninja Trader the right platform or brokerage for you?

Read on to find out the benefits and disadvantages to using Ninja Trader platform and/or brokerage.

Brief Overview

Ninja Trader was released in 2004. Its parent company is headquartered in Denver, CO.

It has over 40,000 users and more than 400 developers. It is similar to MT4 in the sense that it is “open source”. But while MT4 is primarily used by forex traders, Ninja Trader is more popular with the futures trading community.

Ninja Trader can be used for free on a demo account. But if you want to use it to make live trades, you have to either use Ninja Trader Brokerage and pay extra per contract or else lease or buy the platform and use an outside brokerage.

This is a big difference between Ninja Trader and other platforms because most other platforms can only be obtained through an affiliated brokerage.

Who Should Consider It?

If you want to trade futures or forex but do not want to be tied down to a particular broker’s proprietary platform, Ninja Trader might be the right software for you. If you like the software and don’t want to pay an upfront fee to own or lease it, you may also want to use Ninja Trader brokerage.

If you are an experienced trader who wants to have a lot of scripts to use, Ninja Trader is a great platform. This is especially true for the old version, Ninja Trader 7. But Ninja Trader 8 also has a lot of scripts available. And they are growing every day as programmers port over the scripts from the old version.

If you are a beginner, you probably want to stay away from Ninja Trader 7 because it is very difficult to learn.

However, the company has made great strides toward the new version being more newbie-friendly. In addition, the company does offer plenty of video tutorials for NJ7 on their YouTube page if you want to learn the old version.

So this platform isn’t necessarily bad for beginners. But it is aimed more at the experienced trader who likes to use a lot of scripts.

Likes & Dislikes


  • Free simulation version using either random data or live data updated once per day.
  • Highly customizable. Floating windows and many types of indicators can not be found in other platforms. 


  • Older version has steep learning curve while newer version has less scripts available. 
  • No mobile platform (yet).

Investment Offerings

In forex, Ninja Trader can be used to trade any major or minor currency pair and many exotic ones as well.

For example, the company lists commission rates for the Turkish lira, Mexican peso and Swedish krone. These exotic currencies can be traded using Ninja Trader brokerage, which is offered through an agreement with

While most traders won’t have an interest in these, it’s nice to know they are available. You never know when you might be in a weird mood and want to trade something new.

In order to trade forex, Ninja Trader brokerage requires a $2,000 minimum deposit through

If you buy or lease the platform and use an outside broker instead, you may be able to start trading with a smaller amount of capital. Check with your individual broker to make sure.

In futures, Ninja Trader can be used to trade a wide variety of products from different exchanges. Whether you want to trade Fed Funds Futures, S & P 500 e-minis, Comex gold, CBOT 30-yr. T-Bond contracts, CME live cattle, or whatever…Ninja Trader has what you need.

There are a total of 224 types of contracts on the “instrument list” inside the software. So if you’re the kind of trader who likes to jump around from one product to another, you’re definitely not going to get bored with the options available.

Futures can be traded with a minimum deposit of $1,000 through Ninja Trader brokerage. This is done through an agreement with Phillip Capital and Dorman Trading.

The trading platform also has support for stocks. So if you can find an outside stock broker that allows you to use Ninja Trader, it is theoretically possible to do so. However, I am not aware of any that will allow you to do this.


Owning Ninja Trader

The Ninja Trader platform can be purchased with a “lifetime membership” for $999. If you have a lifetime membership, you get access to all of the updates and support you need for the rest of your life. You can also use the software on any of the brokerages that allow it.

If you don’t have $999 up front, you can break the payment down into four monthly installments of $299 each ($1200 total).

If you decide to use Ninja Trader brokerage, a person who owns the software only pays $0.53 commission per futures contract and $0.04 commission per forex lot.

Leasing Ninja Trader

Another option is to lease the platform. In this case, you only have to pay $50 per month. This is a lot better than $299 in the short-run. But of course over a lifetime it’s a lot more expensive.

If you lease the software and use it with Ninja Trader brokerage, you have to pay slightly higher commissions than you would if you owned it: $0.73 per futures contract and $0.05 per forex lot.

Using Ninja Trader for Free (Live Trading)

If you don’t want to lease or buy Ninja Trader, you can always just use it for free and only pay for commissions.

But of course, there are several “catches” to doing this.

First, you can only use Ninja Trader to do live trades for free if you use Ninja Trader brokerage through Phillip Capital,, or Dorman Trading. If you want to use an outside broker, this option is not available.

Second, you get charged more for commissions if you don’t lease or buy the platform: $0.95 per futures contract and $0.06 per forex lot.

Using Ninja Trader for Free (Simulated Trading)

Finally, there is one way to use Ninja Trader totally free. All you have to do is download the software and set it up to use either the “simulated” data feed or the Kinetick End of Day data feed.

The simulated data feed randomly generates price data that is completely unrelated to the real world. But you can use it to practice as much as you want and pay nothing.

The Kinetick End of Day data feed provides end-of-day price data from the real world. Again, this costs nothing and can be useful if you just want to practice.



When you open Ninja Trader 7 or 8, what you get is a set of windows that can be moved around your screen and put wherever you want. If you use multiple monitors to keep track of things going on in the markets, you can even send each of these windows to different monitors.

The heart of the software is the Control Center window. This can be used to open whatever other windows you need.


Ninja Trader 7 has a white and grey theme that cannot be changed.

Ninja Trader 8 has five “skins” that you can choose. By default, “slate grey” is the one it loads up as. But you can change it to black, light, slate light or slate black.

Customization options


As stated before, Ninja Trader is very similar to MT4 in the sense that it allows scripts to be run inside the software. It does this using a programming language called “NinjaScript”.

Chart Trader

Yet another way to customize your trading experience is to use the “chart trader”.


Another way to customize is to configure hot-keys to trigger various actions.


Pushing the “strategy” button will produce a list of automated strategies that can be used for trading.

Educational Materials

In addition to all of these features, the company also provides plenty of help to traders who want learn how to use the software. Their YouTube channel has over 90 videos explaining how to use various Ninja Trader tools.

Customer Service

If the educational materials are not enough for you to figure out how to do what you want with Ninja Trader, the company offers platform support and customer service through e-mail 24 hours a day, five days a week.

For emergencies involving actual trades, the company offers 24/7 phone support.


Ninja Trader is a powerful platform and brokerage for trading futures and forex. It’s hard to go wrong with software that has so many users and developers striving to help each other make it better.

If you are using the old version, it can be difficult for beginners. But experienced traders will usually be very happy with it. And even beginners may like it, especially if they get the new version.