TradeDay Review 2024: Pros, Cons and How It Compares

TradeDay is a US-based prop trading firm that provides a broad range of funded trader programs ranging from $99 to $750 monthly recurring participation fees.

Is TradeDay Legit?

TradeDay officially discloses their company details on their website:

  • TradeDay LLC, 2nd Floor, 412 S.Wells, Chicago, Illinois. 60607
  • Email: support@tradeday.com
  • Phone: +1 (872) 222 7850

On Trustpilot, TradeDay has an excellent reputation, with an average rating of 4.6/5 based on 249 reviews (as of October 2023).

What Assets Can You Trade with TradeDay?

TradeDay specializes in futures trading, which includes 50+ available instruments listed on CME, CBOT, COMEX and NYMEX.

  • Equity Futures: 5 major equity futures (ES, NQ, RTY, NKD, YM)
  • Currency Futures: 7 currency futures (6A, 6B, 6C, 6E, 6J, 6S, 6N)
  • Interest Rate Futures: 6 major interest rate futures (ZT, ZF, ZN, ZB, UB, TN)
  • Energy Futures: 4 energy futures (CL, QM, QG, NG)
  • Metal Futures: 4 metal futures (HG, GC, SI, SIL)
  • Agricultural Futures: 8 agricultural futures (HE, LE, ZS, ZC, ZL, ZM, ZW)
  • Micro Futures: 8 micro futures (MES, MNQ, M2K, MYM, M6E, MCL, MGC)

Trading of crypto, CFDs, options, forex and stocks is not available in the TradeDay program.

Does TradeDay Offer Instant Funding Accounts?

No, TradeDay does not offer any no-evaluation or instant funding accounts.

Does TradeDay Offer One-Phase Evaluations?

Yes, TradeDay offers one-phase evaluations with all of their funded account plans. You can choose between the following account sizes (all prices are monthly recurring prices):

  • $10k tier for $99
  • $25k tier for $125
  • $50k tier for $165
  • $100k tier for $275
  • $150k tier for $350
  • $250k tier for $750

A one-phase evaluation means that you go through one evaluation phase until you get rewarded with a TradeDay account, where you can earn profits ready for withdrawal to your bank account.

The rules across all one-phase funding account sizes are similar. You have unlimited trading days, and you can take all the time you need. Yet, you need to place at least one trade every 60 days to keep your account active and avoid suspension due to inactivity.

Tier Profit Target Trailing Max Drawdown Position Limit in Contracts
$10K $1,000 (10%) $1,000 (10%) 1 mini, 10 micros
$25k $1,500 (6%) $1,500 (6%) 2 mini, 20 micros
$50k $2,500 (5%) $2,000 (4%) 5 mini, 50 micros
$100k $5,000 (5%) $3,000 (3%) 10 mini, 50 micros
$150k $7,500 (5%) $4,000 (2.7%) 15 mini, 50 micros
$250k $12,000 (4.8%) $5,000 (2%) 25 mini, 50 micros

The 3 Main Objectives To Meet

To qualify for a funded account with TradeDay, you have three objectives to meet during the evaluation phase:

Make Money: You need to trade until you reach the profit target defined per tier. The profit target is not a fixed percentage but a fixed absolute value.

Track Record: There is a need to trade at least 10 days during the evaluation period to qualify for a funded account. There is no time limit to achieve the goal.

Be Consistent: TradeDay requires you to have consistent profits. If you have, for example, one great day and 9 losing days, TradeDay doesn’t fund you. No single day’s profit is allowed to exceed 30% of your total profits made. If your best day exceeds 30%, your profit target absolute value will increase to “best day” divided by 30%.

That’s it for the 3 main objectives. The consistency rule can be problematic because, in natural trading, you also have a small percentage of trades that make the overall profit. Many are typically breakeven, and sometimes you lose. The consistency rule forces you to cut your profits early.

Let’s say you are on the 10k tier, and your profit target is $1,000. Once your profitable trade reaches $300, you should cut your profits to stay on the $1,000 target. If you keep the position and, let’s say, make $600 in profits with this amazingly looking trade, TradaDay will re-calculate your profit via $600 divided by 30% = $2,000.

The 3 Rules You Should Never Break

To qualify for a funded account, you have to remember three rules you should never break. If you break those rules, you get disqualified:

Permitted Times: With TradeDay, you are only allowed to day trade. All trades have to be closed before the end of the day. It is your responsibility to close those trades early enough before the exchange closes. Also, you are not allowed to have any working orders in the order book 2 minutes before and after a data release, which TradeDay defines as tier 1 data, like FOMC minutes, US CPI, Crude Oil Inventories etc. Breaching this rule ends up in failure of evaluation and, for funded traders, the loss of their funded account.

Permitted Products: There is a list of permitted products provided by TradeDay, and you can only trade those futures contracts. I listed the currently permitted ones at the beginning, but you should always check the list before you trade.

EOD Trading Drawdown: At the end of a trading day, TradeDay calculates the drawdown value based on the end-of-day trading balance. Once your account value falls below the currently active value, you miss and get disqualified. A drawdown limit always moves to the upside and never to the downside. Example: If you have a $1,000 trailing drawdown, and the end-of-day balance is $12,500 in your account, your new trailing drawdown is $11,500.

Profits made in phase one of the evaluation can’t be withdrawn. But once you make profits in the funded trader account stage, you can withdraw profits.

For the first $10,000 in profits, you can keep the full amount of money. After that, you keep 90% of the money made in the 90/10 profit split.

Evaluation Resets

TradeDay does not offer free evaluation resets, but you can buy them for $99. So, in case you fail with your challenge, you can start all over for $99. If you wait until your subscription renews in the next month, you also get a reset.

TradeDay calls this reset on payment renews a free reset, but in fact, it’s not a free reset. It is a paid reset via your monthly fees. So, if you fail your challenge and want to stop taking a challenge, you have to cancel your subscription. Otherwise, TradeDay charges you monthly.

Renewals

TradeDay fees are monthly fees. If you are in an active challenge, you will continuously get charged. If you fail a challenge, you can wait for the renewal date to start over or use the reset for $99.

Does TradeDay Offer Two-Step Evaluations?

No, TradeDay does not offer any two-step evaluations or challenges.

FundedSim and FundedLive Accounts with TradeDay

Once you pass your challenge in the evaluation process, you continue trading in a Funded Sim and then a Funded Live account. In both the Funded Sim and Funded Live accounts, you get rewarded for making profits, and you can withdraw up to $10,000 of your first profits with a profit split of 100/0. After the $10,000 in profits, the profit splits move to 90/10, where you keep 90% of the profits ready for withdrawal.

Once you pass the evaluation, you have the choice to continue with a Funded Sim account or a Funded Live account.

If you decide on the Funded Sim account, you continue in a simulated environment without monthly exchange fees. You can trade in the funded sim account until your profits reach $5,000. Once you reach the $5,000 in profits, you will move over to the Funded Live account. Even if this is a Funded Sim account, you can withdraw the full $5,000 in profits to your bank account.

After evaluation, you can also directly start with the Funded Live account. Alternatively, if you start with the Funded Sim, you get the Funded Live account after $5,000 in profits. There are some things to keep in mind for the funded live accounts:

  • With the funded live accounts, all orders are placed in live markets on the futures exchange.
  • It takes about one week until your live account is set up due to paperwork with the broker and clearing firm.
  • As a live trader for a prop firm, you are considered a professional trader, and you have to pay $122 in exchange fees per exchange per month.
  • Live traders are subjected to the 20/20 rule for funded traders.
  • Live traders can only track progress using Tradovate.

My Opinion

I think TradeDay does a lot of things right. They offer an excellent profit split, education, mentoring, a community and a trading desk. The consistency rule is kind of uncommon because it forces traders to cut profits early to avoid an increase in the profit target value. Also, in my opinion, they should not promote a free reset if there is not such by definition (if you pay a monthly renewal fee, then this is not a free reset).

Before getting started, you should go through the FAQ section on their site, where you will find 100+ articles with in-depth insights. The only thing I did not find there was the information about the broker used with the live-funded account and the commissions per traded futures contract.

Payout Options

As of October 2023, payouts can be processed via bank wire to everywhere in the world, via ACH transfer to US bank accounts, and via PayPal.

Does TradeDay offer Evaluation Fee Refunds?

No, TradeDay doesn’t offer any type of participation fee refunds. However, there is a 14-day trial if you don’t start your evaluation directly. During the free trial, you can explore the platform and use educational resources. Once you place your first trade, the trial period ends, or at the latest, after 14 days.

What is TradeDay’s Partner Broker?

TradeDay does not disclose its partner broker. They work with Tradovate as a trading platform partner, but the broker that hosts the funded accounts is unclear. TradeDay states on its site that it funds its traders directly, so there is no additional intermediate.

What Trading Platforms Does TradeDay Offer?

With TradeDay, you can use Tradovate for free or NinjaTrader, TradingView and Jigsaw with your own license.

Do I Trade with Simulated Funds or Real Money at TradeDay?

With TradeDay, you trade under simulated live conditions during the evaluation challenge and for the first $5,000 in profits in the funded trading account. Once you pass $5,000 in profits as a funded trader in the simulated funded account, you get transferred to a real-money funded account.

When Can I Start Withdrawing Money from TradeDay?

Upon passing the TradeDay evaluation stages, you become a funded trader and can start withdrawing profits from day one. When your withdrawn profit exceeds $500, there are no withdrawal fees.

What Payment Methods Does TradeDay offer?

TradeDay offers payments via credit card and cryptocurrency.

In What Currency Will My Account Balance Be?

All TradeDay accounts are held in USD as the base currency.

Am I allowed to use Expert Advisors (EA), Bots and Algos with TradeDay?

Expert Advisors are not available with futures trading, but you can code bots and algos in NinjaScript running on the NinjaTrader platform for automated trading. However, be careful with heavy use of algo trading and ask support about your case to be on the safe side.

Pros

  • Excellent Trustpilot review ratings
  • Competitive pricing structure
  • Free level 1 data feeds for CME, CBOT, COMEX, or NYMEX
  • Great profit split conditions (100% of the first $10k, then 90%)
  • Payouts via bank wire globally, ACH transfer to US-based bank accounts, PayPal.

Cons

  • No instant-funded accounts available
  • Consistency rule can be problematic
  • Only one level 2 data feed included (you choose)
  • Broker not disclosed
Alexander Voigt, CEO
Article by
Alexander Voigt is the founder of DayTradingZ, was a regular contributor to Benzinga and has been featured and quoted on leading financial websites such as Investors.com, Capital.com, Business Insider and Forbes.
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