Tech Talk

   Each month in this Journal, our technical support staff addresses issues of interest to many CSI subscribers in a question-and-answer format. This month, they present questions about Unfair Advantage(UA), focusing primarily on premium services.


  The views and information expressed in this document reflect the opinions and experience of the author Robert C. Pelletier.  Neither CSI nor the author undertake or intend to provide tax advice or trading advice in any market or endorse any outside individual or firm.  All recommendations are provided for their informational value only.  Readers should consult competent financial advisors or outside counsel before making any software purchase or investment decision.  CSI does not stand behind or endorse the products of any outside firms.

Copyright (c) 1998 Commodity Systems Inc. (CSI).  All rights are reserved.

Tech Talk
Information from CSI's Customer Support Department

Sound Off

   MATIF's rapid transition from open outcry to a fully electronic trading system has left many, including CSI, clamoring for better reporting of information from the exchange for the CAC-40 and other important contracts. We believe traders on every exchange have the right to know the daily range and close. Don't you?  This problem affects ALL data vendors and traders, as it originates with the exchange itself.

   If you are dissatisfied with the trade information now available for MATIF, please let them know. (We have!) Tell them you require the daily summary data now sought by CSI and other concerned data suppliers. Let them know that you care and that you are a potential trader of their products, but only if both accurate day-time session and accurate 24-hour full session summary prices are made readily available to non-continuous summary session (end-of-day) quotation vendors such as CSI!

Write to:

Matif SA
(Marché à Terme International de France)
115, rue réaumur
75083 Paris cedex 02, France
Tel. : +33 (0)1 40 28 82 82
Fax. : +33 (0)1 40 28 80 01

Holiday Schedule

   CSI will be closed for voice communication on Monday, September 7 for the US Labor Day Holiday. The host computer will remain accessible and data from other exchanges will be available as usual.

Questions and Answers

  I received a replacement Unfair Advantage CD from CSI, but, upon installation, I was unable to access the database through the Internet. Any suggestions?

   As noted in the letter that accompanied the new CD, for best results, we recommend uninstalling the old UA and restarting your computer before installing the new one. And, before running the new program for the first time, we recommend you restart your computer again. This second restart will force your computer to forget any resident DLLs that may have been running and replace them with the new DLLs that are a part of the new software held on your new CD-ROM. If you followed these instructions and the problem continues, please call our tech support staff for immediate assistance.

   I would like to expand my trading activity to some of the European exchanges and other off-shore exchanges, but can't seem to access the charts with my Unfair Advantage. How can I view this data?

   It sounds as if you signed up for just North American coverage in your UA service. You can upgrade to Full World service by paying the balance in License Fees ($49) plus prepaying the World Database rate for the remainder of your subscription term ($13 per month). You can work this out with either our marketing or bookkeeping representatives, who will remotely enable access to the World Database. Call them at (800) 274-4727 or (561) 392-8663. You'll probably be able to begin viewing those off-shore markets the very day you make that call.

   What is going on with my prices for the MATIF CAC-40 Index? Ever since the exchange went all-electronic, CSI's prices have stopped matching those of the Wall Street Journal.

   Unfortunately, the MATIF has left to each data vendor the job of figuring out the trading range and closing price for a day of data. The result: no two vendors match! We hope that the exchange will rectify this situation soon and we are working with them and other data suppliers to find a resolution. See our "Sound Off" article in this issue for information on how you can help.

   My Omega software does not recognize the overseas markets I download with Unfair Advantage, apparently because of the three-character ticker symbols. How can I use CSI's overseas data with Omega's software?

   Although the ticker symbols for overseas markets ARE three-character values, Unfair Advantage can use an alternate set of two-character symbols.  To use this two-character alternative, go to the View menu, click "User Settings," and then the "General" tab. Next, click "Force all exchange symbols to two characters." The replacement symbols are listed in the factsheets under "Symbol (2)." Please be advised that that there are only so many two-character symbol combinations.

   To accommodate nearly 1,000 different futures, cash and forward markets with only two characters in an abbreviated mnemonic form is all but impossible. The symbols were selected for their uniqueness, not for their representative qualities, so don't expect them to make a lot of sense. If you have trouble with these arbitrary symbols, we suggest you either convince Omega to move toward the industry standard three-character symbol set or change CSI's fact sheet symbol definitions to your own selections, being wary of duplicates. If you make changes, be sure to preserve your new copy so that it won't be overwritten when you install your next upgrade of UA.

Further Note

   To Australian, New Zealand, South African, South American and other Southern Hemisphere Users:

   As the Northern Hemisphere approaches the fall season of the year, we will be setting our clocks back an hour to preserve an extra hour of daylight. Coincidentally, you in the Southern Hemisphere will move your clocks forward an hour to accomplish the reverse. Data posting times will appear to be two hours later to you, simply because our respective governments toyed with our clocks. When you re-set your clocks, please begin calling for your data two hours later to continue to enjoy the same level of service. In six months, you can revert to the previous collection time.