Algo-Trading-Course

Best Algorithmic Trading Courses (2021) ranked by Bankers

In Finance Courses & Certifications by Gaurav SharmaUpdated On:

Algorithmic trading has been used in one form or another for several decades now. In fact, there have been a couple of famous instances of unintended crashes due the algorithms not performing as intended. But we have come a long way form then and algorithmic trading is now a highly efficient science with billions being poured into its development and perfection. Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence are the newest technologies being utilized and we are seeing exponential improvements.

Because of these advances, the demand for algorithmic trading experts has been increasing and there really aren’t enough qualified candidates to fill the roles in trading or development. Individual traders are also looking at some form of algorithms and given my own Computer Science and Finance background, I too have been toying with algo trading since around 2009. This is something you need to learn sooner rather than later and here are the best courses to help you do just that.


1. Artificial Intelligence for Trading from Udacity

Who is it for?

Ideal for quantitative analysts and traders (quants), investment analysts, financial engineers, data analysts in trading and other professionals who need to use advanced computing for market related roles.

Why take this course?

  1. This is more than just a course. It’s a Nanodegree program that’ll pick you up and get you desk-ready to become an AI coding super trader in a matter of months. Udacity provides a lot of value-added services to students, and this is not just a hands-off undertaking. You do real world projects and receive feedback. You have mentor support for technical issues and also get access to a career coach. This is not just a bunch of online videos being marketed as a course. Mentors answer your technical questions if you have any and career resources like Resume/ LinkedIn profile reviews help turn you into an AI mastermind.
  2. The program heavily uses Python and Mathematical concepts and covers topics like quantitative trading, portfolio optimization, factor investing, sentiment analysis using natural language processing, signal processing, back testing and finally simulating trades. The whole nine yards.
  3. A course dedicated to using AI for quantitative trading applications. There is a focus on portfolio optimization, natural language processing for sentiment analysis, using trading signals for your algorithms, back-testing and so on. In short, this course is laser focused on quantitative trading and it does that rather well.
  4. There are a lot of mini projects that you must complete along the way which reinforces the learning rather well. Think of it as a Nanodegree program (which is what its officially called). It’s not just a course, its a more comprehensive and focused experience that requires greater commitment from the learner. However, the extra effort is proportionally rewarded with a superior understanding of the concepts which I would equate to completing a full-time degree on the subject.
  5. For example, your first project is to develop a momentum trading strategy after learning quantitative trading and generating signals from stock data. Then you move on to portfolio optimization, financial securities formed by stocks, including market indices, vanilla ETFs, and Smart Beta ETFs. Crucial trading concepts like factor investing, alpha research, sentiment analysis, and trade simulation is also covered in great detail. There is also a massive section on using natural language processing to generate trading signals! This is just top-notch stuff if you are even mildly interested in trading.

Summary

Time to CompleteAbout 6 months
FormatSelf-paced, fully online
DifficultyIntermediate

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2. Investment Management with Python and Machine Learning Specialization from EDHEC

Who is it for?

Asset and Portfolio managers, day traders, professional traders.

Why take this course?

  1. This is one of the best specializations for trading and asset management using machine learning and data science. The course has a triple focus: giving you the foundational theory and underlying concepts for investments, practical applications and implementation, and lastly doing all of this using Python for AI and ML.
  2. The specialization is divided into four modules or sub-courses. The first course focuses on portfolio construction and analysis with Python. You will learn the underlying science behind this along with the basics of investment philosophy and practical implementations. Next, you move on to advanced portfolio construction using Python. Although Python is used heavily, this is still a beginner friendly course and you will learn what you need to along the way.
  3. The third module focuses on using Python and machine Learning for asset management. Lastly, you will use the same Python and Machine Learning skills for asset management with alternative data sets. The idea is to explore and identify new data that can help in the investment process. With the power of machine learning and AI, we can finally do this.
  4. This specialisation is offered by EDHEC Business Schools which is one of the best in Europe. This specialisation will not only help you learn form the best but should also give you a strong CV point or something to add to your LinkedIn profile.

Summary

Time to Complete80 hours
FormatSelf-paced, fully online
DifficultyBeginner

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3. Electronic Trading in Financial Markets from the New York Institute of Finance

Who is it for?

Retail traders, professional traders, regulators, financial journalists, trading operations staff and risk managers.

Why take this course?

  1. NYIF has been trading bankers, traders and regulators for almost a century now. Their experience is reflected in this and other courses and online learning provides you the opportunity to benefit as well right from the comfort of your home.
  2. The course covers fundamentals of the market structure and mechanics, how electronic trading happens, what are the formats and why they are used, how an electronic order book is maintained and used, how exchanges work and what are the inherent limitations of each approach.
  3. Then you move on to more advanced electronic trading topics like the dynamics of trading with large volumes, using benchmark algorithms, and other complex mechanics of automated trading. Fixed income trading (for bonds) is also covered. Lastly, you will learn about the latest FinTech innovations and the opportunities they present for electronic trading.

Summary

Time to Complete12 hours
FormatSelf-paced, fully online
DifficultyBeginner

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About the Author

Gaurav Sharma

Gaurav started his finance career as an intern in Citi’s Institutional Clients Group in 2009, eventually ending up as an Associate Director at Standard Chartered Bank’s Corporate & Institutional Banking division a few years later. By 2016, he was an independent consultant helping FinTech start-ups in London with product development and launch. Gaurav also helps banks with their digital banking initiatives and advises PE & VC firms with investments in the financial services and FinTech sectors. Gaurav writes on topics ranging from EU banking regulations and tradional finance to Blockchain startups and the future of banking itself! He has an Engineering degree in Computer Science and an MBA with a double major in Finance and Marketing. He is also a Certified Financial Risk Manager.