Looking out for Survey Volunteers: We are now giving away a lifetime free copy of our MaoriVibes EA (NZDUSD H1) that’s being used in our real money MAORI portfolio.

Qualify and finish our survey “Decision elements before applying real money funds to trading with a Forex Expert Advisor” (doable in under 3 minutes) and receive a free copy of the MaoriVibes EA at the end.

Go to Survey here

NZDUSD is not the easiest instrument to automate trading, and therefore MaoriVibes can provide an interesting, money-making risk diversification element in your portfolio. It has been working steadily and making money in our Maori Portfolio since January 2019.

Please find the MaoriVibes ExpertAdvisor FactSheet below.

If you have any issue with the survey or the EA, please contact us, using one of the channels at the website.

Thanks for your collaboration!
Odysseia Capital Team

Go to Survey here


Go to Survey here

After inception in June 2016 Odysseia Capital decided to terminate the Arion Service.

The decision didn’t come light as this was our first signal with inception in June of 2015. We leave the market place with a overall return of over 42%. The decision didn’t result from a violation of the maximum DD limit imposed in our strategy, but because in the current market conditions of an extremely high central banks role around the world, causing low volatility and also in the current indefiniteness in key economies around the world the strategies in which Arion relies have a hard time to perform.

As you can know from our previous posts, we have been waiting long for a return of a normal volatility environment that could allow Arion to return to past performance. But the world is in a strange stance position and there are no signs that problems are to be disentangled soon.  So we don’t need to wait for the portfolio to surpass the maximum drawdown limit when we see that the current conditions that are prolonged for a long time now don’t bring value to Arion, and thus our customers. With our customer’s interests in mind, as always, we decide to put an end to what as a interesting and challenging journey that, at the end, still managed to provide an interesting return.

But the news are not all bad, we are now shifting our focus to more resilient strategies and are presently working in three portfolios:

a) NEXUS – a long term focused portfolio aimed to be more robust a transient conditions and provide long term survival and low risk. NEXUS can already be subscribed through our website. Visit the correspondent service page for more information.

b) MAORI: a portfolio in the works mainly focused in AUD and NZD crosses to allow diversification possibilities to your portfolio.

c) ZEPHIR: a portfolio in the works focused in a more adaptive approach to diverse market conditions with a wide range of instruments covered and thus highly diversified.

We also introduced a very innovative subscription system, in which the subscription price varies with the long term performance of the corresponding portfolio. Head to the corresponding service page to learn more about this exciting feature.

Stay tuned for more news soon!


We have been quiet in our communication outlets but working diligently in the background and after a very challenging 2017 we managed finally to reach another all time overall record. After 3 years and no year with negative return, Arion has touched it’s all time highest overall return of 72% since its inception date.

What a good way to celebrate a 3 year anniversary!

Visit the statistics of our verified account here:


October 2017 ARION Wrap-up

The volatility in the markets remains low, and so it continued during the month of October. However, luckily for Arion, here and there it seems that the markets are less available for the extreme complacency stance that we have been seeing in all of 2017. Odysseia Capital has been calling for this pick-up in volatility as it’s be hard to accommodate the view that the markets would now be unresponsive to every and any event, in what it would seem to the less attentive, a relentless march of asset appreciation. 

Despite what it seems now to be a healthy pick-up in global economy, it’s also true that the markets tick by what happens in the main economic blocks. We believe the next months, as Brexit negotiations will either default or succeed, as the USA administration will prove that it can deliver (or not) on promises and the ECB starts to tighten the monetary policy, will show a different picture in the volatility.

Specifically, this October, the October 26th ECB meeting brought extra localized volatility as Mário Draghi presented a more dovish approach as compared to several other previous public interventions. The effect on volatility (as represented by the VIX index) is clearly seen in the chart below, where it can be easily verified the volatility spike on the 26th of October, the date of the ECB monetary policy meeting and press conference.


Image source: CBOE (www.cboe.com)

The volatility spike on the 26th of October enabled some very interesting trades in the Arion and the strategy was able to end the month with a return of 2.4%, above the long term monthly target,  locking in the second month in a row of not only positive returns but also above the aimed 2%/month. It remains to be seen if the markets will allow Arion to return to stable stream of positive returns as seen before.

We take the opportunity to inform that the NZDUSD strategy will be removed from the portfolio. It failed to prove profitable after 1.5 years and the negative contribution of more -1% to the October return was the last drop. But worry not, a totally new NZD strategy has already been developed and it’s at this time under test.


Some days ago we have published in our blog our first conclusions of the broker challenge we started in September 2016. In that blog entry, we have made several considerations on each of the brokers and we have highlighted FXCM as being a very promising broker.

We bring back the following table published in our last blog entry.


In fact, if we had computed the percent return of the time period since the FXCM was started, we would have had the following results in the total compounded return for the top 3 accounts:

1st – FXCM: 5.9% return

2nd – ActivTrades: 5.0% return

3rd – GlobalPrime: 4.3% return.

The apparent excellent results from FXCM since May intrigued us and made us want to go deeper and learn more.  What we found wasn’t a totally pleasant surprise.

It appears that the rollover swaps and commissions charged by FXCM are not recorded as commission or as rollover swaps as an integral part of the trade, but rather as separate withdrawals and deposits (in the this last case only in positive rollover swaps).

Take a look at typical FXCM trade record in MyFxbook from where we drew our aggregated results to our study.


It’s evident the high number of associated extra transactions (withdrawals and deposits) resulting from each single trade. The problem occurs because that these transactions are (correctly) not accounted by MyFxbook as swaps and commissions being part of the trading activity, but rather just for what they are (according with the way they were recorded): as withdrawals and deposits.

Withdrawals and Deposits shouldn’t affect trading performance indicators, but commissions and swaps should definitely be accounted for as they are part of the cost model for the trader in accordance with the revenue system the broker implements at the core of its business model.

With FXCM we face then a rather peculiar situation where the main performance indicators associated with the trading as published by MyFxBook don’t represent the net performance for the trader. However, the MyFxBook reported figures are closer to the performance a trader would have if there would be no brokerage costs (namely swaps and commissions). On one hand, this brings some transparency, as one can easily now understand how high are the costs and how much from one’s trading success is landing in the broker pocket, but on the other it also creates confusion as the overall performance figures such as returns, profit and growth charts as published by MyFxBook (and to which the trader’s eyes are naturally drawn to) are simply and factually incorrect, indeed very incorrect.

So, returning to our broker challenge, regarding FXCM we have to compute, month per month, the impact of the broker’s costs which are wrongly recorded as withdrawals/deposits. The following table, after corrections results:


The first conclusion we see take is that, after all, since May the overall return for FXCM was not 5.9% as previously thought, but of 3.5%.

A divergence in a 5 month return of 2.4% it’s a huge difference for a strategy aiming to get a couple of percent per month. Mind you, that FXCM still seems to be performing well as it maintains itself in the top 3 brokers’ ranking for the 5 months it has been trading (surpassing Thinkforex which during these months had a return of -0.2%). However, we ask ourselves what makes a broker to record costs, including commissions, in such a strange and awkward fashion. We can only come up with the explanation that the aim is of creating information asymmetry, when so many traders in the community are using reporting tools such as MyFxBook. in fact , with FXCM it seems at first sight, that one is achieving a very interesting performance, but a closer look will tell us that almost of half of the “performance” shown by MyFxBook is, after all, going directly to the broker’s pocket.

We had already encountered similar practices in other brokers but restricted to rollover swaps, which cause much less impact in MyFxBook performance indicators. For instance in our now “retired-from-challenge” Oanda account , you can verify that since inception in September 2016, only 88 Eur were subtracted from the account in rollover swaps (and recorded as withdrawals), whereas in a FXCM account, of the same size and trading equal position sizes, in 5 months about 280 Eur were withdrawn, this because FXCM also records commissions (not only swaps) as withdrawals. Concerning rollover swaps, even if it annoys a bit because it impacts MyFxBook performance indicators, we can understand the concept behind it: what the broker aims is to charge you on a daily basis for the financing costs (swaps) as they are occurring in your account since positions can remain open for long times. Luckily, other brokers embed the swap in the overall trade cost and only effectively charge you when the trade is closed. In this last model, each trade enclosed all the costing information related with it and the net profit you see will be the final net profit of the trade.

So, what can we conclude from this lesson:

  • Brokers go a great length to create the maximum information asymmetry possible, are at least to present you information in the more pleasant way possible to make their case (i.e. to maximize their revenues).
  • It’s good to the broker that you think you are gaining more than you effectively are. This builds confidence and encourages trading. The more the trading the more the broker wins in commissions, spreads etc.
  • Even experienced traders can be tricked when observing a MyFxBook report. That was what happened to us. The close to 6% return shown by FXCM MyFxBook was, after all, no more than 3.5%.
  • Short term strategies aiming for low pip gains per trade (such as Arion) are much more prone to be affected by this phenomenon, as the lump sum commission doesn’t depend on the gain/loss made or the time each trade is open, but on the position size and number of trades.
  • Traders have to be on high alert when analyzing their performance, especially on short term trading strategies, like Arion. This is also particularly true when analyzing the performance of service vendors such as ourselves in MxFxBook. Is the aggregated key performance indicators real ? Can they really be taken for face value ? 
  • Traders should question brokers why do they opt for this kind of awkward recording practices and tell them they are not happy with it. That’s what we’ll do with FXCM.

BROKER CHALLENGE – 13 months and 2.000 closed trades later…


So, more than 1 year ago we started a broker contest with the aim to understand in what extent brokers matter, when choosing the right environment to host a client account for a signal service relying in short term strategies like Arion. See more detailed information about our brokers under test in our “Brokers” webpage here.

We have enrolled the following brokers in this challenge:

  • Global Prime (Master account in this test)
  • FxPro UK
  • ThinkForex UK
  • HotForex
  • Oanda UK
  • Forex Time
  • LMAX
  • ActivTrades 
  • FXCM (added since May 2017)

More details about each of the account types here.

All brokers’ MT4 trading platforms have been installed in VPS with enough capacity and residing as close as possible to the broker’s servers in order to reduce latency. This means that brokers MT4s trading platforms have been installed in a close to an ideal infrastructure to allow all brokers excel or fail in similar fashion. All accounts are of REAL MONEY so with direct real money investment from Odysseia Capital.

After 13 months and close to 2.000 trades we think it’s now time to take some conclusions. And the conclusions are quite interesting, in our view.

Let’s take a look to the monthly percentage return achieved by each one of the tested brokers. Grading colors mean relative position of each broker in the ranking (green, leading, red lagging)


As it can be noted, the test resulted in huge differences across the board. From a total compounded return of close to 12% in the leading broker (Activtrades) to -3% in the lagging broker (FxPro). It’s a whopping 15% of return in little more than one year. More than enough for opposite decisions between continuing with the signal or drop it.

Now, because some accounts have some specifics (for instance Lmax has not always allowed micro lots for Gold trades during the total test) and different instruments can have different different position sizes (as per defined internally by the Arion strategy team) we decided also to also perform a comparison on Pips, which provides a similar, but not totally coincident view:


Please note that FXCM account only joined the test in May and therefore didn’t have the same time available to accumulate Pips. In fact FXCM is one of the accounts we trust will be within the best performers, provided that enough time is allowed.

The main differences we found when making the analysis by Pips are that Lmax jumped to the third place (the Gold trades surely weighted on Lmax) and Hotforex has also jumped up in the ranking, possibly because this account is the only small account in the challenge (with only 2.500 EUR starting capital) so smaller positioning is harder to balance in this account and granularity of positions is not possible.

In brief, our conclusions are:

  • When selecting a broker to follow a trading signal (any signal, not only Arion) one should monitor closely the adherence of the its own account to the account of the Signal Provider. There are very significant differences between brokers (and possibly account types), which become very evident when a comprehensive long term test is undertaken.
  • When contacted, bad brokers will tell you that they cannot guarantee they have the same prices than other brokers, that their pricing depend on liquidity providers, etc, etc. The reality is that this can all be true, but what matters is that it translates in much worse trading conditions for customers and can transform a profitable strategy into a losing one. It’s as plain as that: prices are different between brokers, but if there was no clear disadvantage in some brokers towards others, over 2.000 trades and 13 months and several market conditions, variability between the brokers should cancel each other. If there are big accumulated divergences between brokers, it means only that brokers with poor performance provide you with worse conditions for  the requirements of your strategy. As all in life, some brokers are good, others poor and we should be able to accept that as a plain fact when operating in this market.


About how we will proceed with each broker:

  • Regarding FxPro and Oanda, tests will finish immediately. It’s evident enough that the tested accounts don’t make the cut to allow Arion to excel. However, regarding these two brokers we will still initiate two tests in two different account types and give them a second chance. We have contacted both these brokers, which have suggested other account types
  • ThinkForex is a puzzle we still have to understand how such a poor Pips performance has still managed to place Thinkforex in the clear profitable group. We still have to decide what to do.
  • ForexTime has behaved averagely broker, but we cannot drop it easily as this is our long term history showcase account.
  • Hotforex: we believe that it deserves the benefit of the doubt, so we will increase capital in order to give it the same conditions as the other accounts under test.
  • Lmax will continue in the challenge. It suffered in the % return due to the overweight of the Gold positions, but now Gold positions in micro lots seem to be allowed, so we expect to perform better from now on.
  • FXCM is still young in our test but the performance so far seems to be promising. It will continue in the challenge.
  • Active trades is our best in class (client account). It will continue to be part of the challenge.


All accounts in the challenge be assessed here.

All in all, Odysseia Capital is extremely satisfied by having setup this challenge. After 13 months we believe we have provided valuable information to our customers and feel proud that, as far as we know, we are the only signal provider in the world which tests its signals in so many different brokerage environment with significant real money accounts for the sole benefit of our customers.


Note: Odysseia Capital has no relation or affiliation with any broker, other than a normal client/supplier relationship. The above conclusions are not intended to serve as a generic recommendation or evaluation about any broker. The results and conclusions are limited to the scope of the trading within the Arion product, as per described above. When expressions such as “best” or “worse” are used, or alike with similar value, they are to be understood only as within the scope of the test, as per described above.

September 2017 ARION Wrap-up 

September marked the return of ARION to a clear month of profits. Several events affecting the Euro the  US Dollar and the Cable contributed for a very nice month and even if part of the profits were given away back to the market towards the end of the month, the 7.4% with which we ended September brought the profit back to close to the all time highs. We are happy to have closed a large part of the marginal losses that had been accumulating in the last few months. Quite relevant also is the that maximum drawdown (DD) of less than 13% since the begging of the year, which was when the strategy started to result in less than satisfying results. The maximum drawdown registered in this period was less than half of the maximum DD planned for the service, which shows the maintenance of a good risk diversification of the portfolio.

Nobody likes to see losses small or larger accumulating for mote than a couple of months and ARION has seen some clients defecting the service. We try hard to fight the natural human behavioral pattern to systematically loose money in the markets. Humans have a natural tendency, shaped by psychological constraints of by buying high and selling low. In fact humans often need confirmation to buy a financial asset and are extremely sensitive to losses. This means that financial products are often bought after gains have been made (confirmation need), so at an high price point, and sold at a low price when a less than good period arrives (out of fear of losses) This behavior is exactly the opposite of what should be the rule to be successful when investing in the markets. We have seen that happen in these last months in Arion, but we are aware it’s really hard to overcome customer’s fears and to convince them to enter the product when it is loosing money, as even one of the best managed funds ever – the Fidelity Investments Magellan fund – managed to have the average customer loosing money on its best 13 year period, despite the fund averaged a hefty annual return of (a positive!) 29% per year over that very same time period! (read more here). 

Anyway, to the customers who decided to stay with us, we are happy to bring them to profits again and strive to continue  to. To the ones who decided to leave in the recent drawdown period we are sorry we couldn’t argue strong enough to convince them to stay and recoup their losses, for some it was just a matter of a couple of weeks.

Currently ARION’s new subscriptions are suspended. The suspension will last until we have in place all the adjustments we foresee and until we a achieve a smooth come back to our long term target of +2% long term average monthly return.


Despite the North Korea/US showdown and the increasingly evident Trump’s isolation in presidency and other factors that could spike the volatility to other higher levels, market keeps showing a reasonable degree of complacency as shown by VIX index, which has peaked at around 17 on Trump’s comments regarding the recent Charlottesville’s events or at around 16 when Kim Jong-un decided to fly a missile over Japanese sovereign territory. Last year, on a mere less than clear comment from the BoJ governor, VIX jumped to over 20.

Nothing seems to release the energy we still believe to be accumulating in the markets. While we still believe the markets will sooner or later return to higher levels of volatility, we must also recognize that, during the past months, Arion’s performance hasn’t been in line with out objectives and with its past behavior.

Moreover, the quality of the late volatility is not the best for Arion to excel in performance. As we have clarified before, Arion performs best when the volatility comes from market events that are clear in their impacts and so that markets can digest clearly. What to say when, in the current market phase, a Noth Korea projectile flies over Japan, but the market flies at the same time to the yen as safe haven currency ?

With this setting in mind, we have decided to concentrate our efforts in fixing what there is to fix in Arion and avoid any additional energy on marketing the product and dealing with new customers. We stand by the long term profitability targets of the product.

This is why we decide to suspend temporarily the acceptance of new subscriptions after the 1st of September.

Current customers are of course welcome to remain in the service as long as they wish. We will however reach by email them regarding more information about how will the evolve and options available.

Please note that we take this decision out of Odysseia Capital’s core attribute to always provide the best service possible to its customer base, as the recent drawdown experienced by the strategy is still very far away from the 30% maximum allowed or even the 21% maximum ever experienced.

We will reopen ARION subscriptions with renewed strenght, when it shows us again more consistent behavior and profit pattern to our customers.

We also take the opportunity to inform that our NEXUS strategy is in the works and already showing quite interesting results in a real money account. Stay tuned!

June 2017 ARION Wrap-up – No news is not good news

June 2017 marks the second year in ARION’s lifetime. Unfortunately this is pretty much the only relevant piece of news this month. 

Following a string of several months, the VIX continues at historical low levels, limiting the rebound opportunities to move ARION aways from the plateauing period it has been experiencing since early this year.

June was basically a “no history month” with a +78 pip performance and a -10 USD profit in our showcase account at ForexTime. The account went nowhere, hurting our compounded monthly return which took another bite (at the end of June was sitting at 1.88% per month).

We want to avoid to repeat ourselves month after month, so now we wish to focus on a more interesting topic: Brokers!! (yes, it’s always so interesting to check that there are actually relevant differences between them)!

As we see months going by in 2017, we see our showcase account at ForexTime adding up negative months upon negative months. True, at most of the months the negative returns have been close to marginal, yes. However, it’s always distressing to see one’s account adding up negative performance upon negative performance. This is, however, not true for all brokers.

Upon a quick visit to our brokers webpage (https://odysseiacapital.com/resources/brokers/) it’s easy to see that from a pool of brokers running the exact same strategy, results over the months are hardly similar. To our despair, our showcase account at ForexTime (and it’s only so due to its longer history) is the account that has been, since September, the lackluster within the group.

From the pool tested, the best brokers to host ARION strategy have proved to be ActivTrades, GlobalPrime and Thinkforex UK, in this order. This is what our broker comparison tells us over a 9 month period. FXCM seems promising but we still need more data.

See the table below showing several brokers running the very same ARION strategy:


Table 1 –  Broker challenge running ARION over 9 months. The color scheme within each month show the relative performance of each broker when compared with the group in the same month.

Another important result is that when a broker is performing badly, over time, the negative (or positive, depends on which broker one hosts the service) results adds up. See the difference experienced between ForexTime account and ActiveTrades. Over 9 months it ads up to more than 11% return difference. It’s huge!!

Naturally that the performance of some of our customer’s accounts can be quite different from our ForexTime account, even if it is receiving signals from our ForexTime account through distribution channels like simpletrader.net, for instance. It depends at what prices orders are being filled, when signal triggers an order at customers’ accounts.

So, what does this means to our customers ?

While we are under talks with Forex Time to see what is possible to do on their side (we don’t have high expectations though), we are also advising a change to all our customers who might be experiencing something like our ForexTime performance, wish to stick with ARION and believe (as we do) that sooner than later a rebound in the strategy will come picking up again the long term trend of the strategy and the the long term targets defined for ARION.

We usually avoid any advising on what distribution channel we favor or disfavor. In this case however it seems clear some customers might have an advantage by subscribing the service directly through our webpage (as opposed to one of the signal copying services where our signal is also available) and to select ActivTrades (for instance) to host their client account.

Important to notice is that the ActivTrades account is a “Client Account” to our own service (even if owned by us) as any other account from a client would be. Therefore, in case your setup is a subscription through our website and an ActivTrades account to host your account and our signal copier, the expectation would be to track our client ActivTrades account closely. Please be aware however that other factors can also play a role, such as VPS hosting or latency from your computer and ActivTrades trading servers.

If you wish to move your subscription to a direct relationship through our site and our own signal copying service (instead of a marketplace such as simpletrader.net), and have any questions or doubts, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We will try to address all your concerns as soon as possible.

Please take notice that this post is no specific affiliate recommendation on any broker, as we don’t have any commercial relationship of affiliation or receive any rebates or revenues from brokers in any sense. The present post is solely a naked analysis of the facts and the identification of possible more advantageous scenarios to our customers.

Another month, another low overall volatility period in the markets.

Our outlook for a new high VIX sustained cycle we set out in our last March report did not materialize and throughout VIX maintained itself again in historically low levels. At the time of this post VIX stood at little over 10, already after a 2% daily increase.


Source: CBOE

Naturally we are not satisfied with this kind of numbness in the markets, which is causing ARION to underperform so far this year. For the first time in ARION’s history, May marked the first occurrence of a three month negative results series and a unwanted dip below our long term 2% monthly return target. The fact that it’s also the longest period of low volatility ARION has ever experienced doesn’t leave us anyway less disappointed with the way the last months have shown themselves to ARION. 

In benefit of the truth it must also be said that not all of our three sub-strategies in ARION had negative performance. In fact one of the three main strategies had a quite hefty monthly return. Arion benefits from a high degree of diversification, meaning that to enjoy less deep drawdowns one must be able accept that in some months good returns in some of the sub-strategies might be cancelled out by the other parts of the portfolio.

As one bad luck does never come alone (shouldn’t Murphy law work all the time), when around mid month we saw a spike in VIX, the strategy was able to scoop some really nice trades, but unfortunately the server where this FXTM showcase account was running had a severe problem and for some days this account was in fact intermittent on and off the market, missing the best period of the month. Our other account at Activtrades, which was running at a different server had in fact a positive month, mainly due to the nice trades the strategy was able to pocket exactly at the period when VIX spiked and managed to end the month positively. The positive May performance at our Activtrades account can be checked here: https://www.myfxbook.com/members/odysseiacapital/arion-activtrades/1899812

Overall, we can only say we’re regret this development of events and we continue to work hard to recover to our long profitability targets, especially now in this month of June when our strategy is celebrating 2 years in the market. However we really need some help from the kind of volatility we have seen in past years and months – VIX larger than 20 and volatility resulting from unambiguous events easily digested by the markets.