DEFINITION of 'Autotrading'

A trading strategy where buy and sell orders are placed automatically based on an underlying system or program. The buy or sell orders are sent out to be executed in the market when a certain set of criteria is met.

Some investment newsletters provide an autotrading feature where, based on the newsletter's recommendation, an order to buy or sell a position is sent to the subscriber brokers automatically.

BREAKING DOWN 'Autotrading'

Autotrading and systems or programs to form buy and sell signals are used typically by active traders who enter and exit positions at a much higher rate than the average investor. There are also a wide range of systems that differ on the set of criteria used to generate the buy or sell signals. Typically, the criteria used is more technical in format - in that it focuses on price movement and technical indicators. These autotrading systems are used in a wide range of markets including stocks, futures, options and Forex.