What is ATS? From a technical point of view, the "Action Threshold Software" (ATS) is basically a set of two indicators and an expert advisor for the Metatrader 4 (MT4) platform. Simply put, one indicator draws various lines and boxes onto your charts, the other one runs in a separate window and is meant to assist you in grading price swings. The indicators can be applied to any time frame and asset that is available in your MT4. The expert advisor is an alert system which can be configured to send you notifications when specific events occur. The expert advisor will, however, not enter, exit or manage trades.
The boxes and lines drawn by the first indicator are designed to create some sort of structure which you can frame your trading ideas on. They are all based on ATS's concept of the three different market phases. The interpretation of these elements is completely up to you - the ATS indicators will never give you specific entry or exit signals (like a green or red arrow). You might want to watch the introductory video on their Youtube channel to get more information.
There is a weekly webinar which lasts about 1 - 1.5 hours. Subscribers may ask questions regarding the market and the host will then break down and analyze the situation, beginning from a high(er) time frame, usually the monthly chart. Customers may also contact the support team via email to have individual questions answered. In addition, there are plenty of, but mostly quite brief formal training videos explaining the components of the software and a so-called "basic strategy" for new subscribers to begin with.
There is also a weekly "volatility report" which features 1 - 4 currency pairs / US indexes. According to the creators of the report, a larger price movement is expected to happen anytime soon in these assets. You are also given a bias (long/short) and a "threshold price".
My experiences with ATS I have been using the ATS software for about 5 months now. I will most likely cancel my subscription. Here are the reasons:
- For some reason, the "basic strategy" does not work for me. I have tried it on a demo account for some time, but the majority of my trades were losses.
- The suggested trading style does not suit me. You are encouraged to think like the "big players" who scale in with multiple positions over a longer period of time. If you are a position trader and willing to hold your trades longer term, this might not bother you.
- In one webinar, the host told the viewers to be "creative" with the tools ATS provides. I have a strong belief in rule-based trading. Whenever I try to be "creative" in the markets, I usually lose money. Again, this might not apply to you.
- The webinars usually take a look at the markets from hindsight. A lot of times you are going to hear something like "if you had caught it here, you would have..." or "you could have entered another position here". The host(s) avoid at all costs to say anything that could be interpreted as a live signal.
- The price point of USD 150 per month is too high for me. You may also choose to pay for 6 or 12 months upfront and get a discount (~5.6% for the 6 months package and ~11% for the one year package).
Conclusion ATS is definitely not a scam. It's a legitimate piece of software some traders might find useful to have in their trading arsenal. There is no free trial, so if you want to test it, you'll have to bite the bullet and pay the 150 dollars for a month. Also worth mentioning: I contacted the support team on various occasions. They were quick to respond and answered all my questions in a friendly manner.
If you want clear "rules of engangement" for the financial markets in terms of buy/sell signals, ATS is not for you. If you love to trade higher time frames, hold your positons for an extended period of time and do not want your decisions to depend on any "classic" indicator but price action only, you might want to give it a try.