Trading Strategies Revealed – “Opening Range Breakout” review

“Opening Range Breakout” is a popular trading strategy that uses first intra-day candle’s high-low range to identify the entry point upon its breakout.

How to trade using Opening Range Breakout?

A trader should open a buy trade when price breaks the high of the first candle and a sell trade when price breaks the low of the first candle.

Initial back-test

To run a back-test we have coded a complete Opening Range Breakout trading strategy as a MetaTrader 4 Expert Advisor. During preliminary analysis we have identified that the best time frame for Opening Range Breakout trading strategy is 1 hour (H1). We have run a back-test of Opening Range Breakout strategy. For our test as a trade exit rule we have used a Trailing Stop of 30 pips which is launched after a trade has started and is modified each new 1 pip of profit. From our point of view, such approach allows to maximize profit and minimize drawdown.

We have run the test for 2009.01.01-2021.01.24 using Every Tick modelling on EURUSD-H1, using 1:11 leverage, without reinvestment, assuming spread equals 10 ticks. These are the main parameters of Opening Range Breakout trading strategy performance at its non-optimized state:

ROI# of tradesWinning ratioMax. drawdown

Trading data analysis

After running the initial test of a simple non-filtered strategy we perform a trading data analysis that allows to identify possible filters to use to make the strategy more profitable reducing the drawdown simultaneously.

The following charts may give some possible insights on which filters to apply (time sessions, day of week limitation, trend strength threshold, overbought/oversold conditions, volatility range) to turn this strategy profitable should you decide to use this strategy in your investment portfolio:


Opening Range Brekout trading strategy can be used with other indicators to filter out losing trades and make entry signals more accurate. After analysing trading data we have found the following insights which have helped us to increase the profitability of Opening Range Brekout trading strategy and reduce it’s drawdown

  • Trades that were opened at a too low and at a too high values of ADX have appeared to bring more losses when trading “Opening Range Breakout” trading strategy during 2009 – 2020. ADX shows the power of the current trend. It is more reasonable to take trades at the trend start.
    (ROI increase -5.14% -> -0.6%, Drawdown reduction 61.69% -> 19.48%)
  • The majority of buy trades that were opened at a too low value of Stochastic and the majority of sell trades that were opened at a too high value of Stochastic were losing when trading “Opening Range Breakout” trading strategy during 2009 – 2020. It is risky to take trades in the overbought and oversold zones.
    (ROI increase -5.14% -> 1.3%, Drawdown reduction 61.69% -> 12.50%)
  • The most profitable trades were opened at the middle value of DeMarker when trading “Opening Range Breakout” during 2009 – 2020. DeMarker aims to assess the directional bias of the market.
    (ROI increase -5.14% -> -0.3%, Drawdown reduction 61.69% -> 22.42%)

Optimization results

We have analysed data received from a test of Opening Range Breakout trading strategy during 2009 — 2019 years and applied some filters such as Stochastic, ADX and Demarker. As a result, the profitability of the strategy has increased from -5.14% up to 5.6% and it’s drawdown has reduced from 61.69% to 4.58% using leverage 1:1.

Post-optimization back-test

Reducing the drawdown has allowed us to increase the leverage that can be used while trading this strategy up to 1:35, which in turn, has resulted in annualized ROI increase up to 196.09%!

Reducing the drawdown has also allowed us to use risk based lot calculation. Below you can see the back-test results using $10,000 initial balance and 7% risk per trade:

ROI# of tradesWinning ratioMax. drawdown

Analyze your trading strategy!

If you have a trading strategy that you want to analyse, optimize and increase its profitability (or even turn it from losing into a profitable Forex trading strategy) – feel free to contact us! Our trading data analysis team will respond to you within 24 hours clarifying all the details needed.

Our team of experienced MQL4/MQL5 programmers and NinjaScript developers guarantees the quality of your trading strategy automation in accordance with your individual requirements.
Send us the description of your project and we will provide you a free consultation regarding your trading system.

Disclaimer: Hypothetical or Simulated performance results have certain limitations, unlike an actual performance record, simulated results do not represent actual trading. Also, since the trades have not been executed, the results may have under-or-over compensated for the impact, if any, of certain market factors, such as lack of liquidity.

Simulated trading programs in general are also subject to the fact that they are designed with the benefit of hindsight. No representation is being made that any account will or is likely to achieve profit or losses similar to those shown.

Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results. The customer is responsible for using the product at his or her own risk and “Nordman Algorithms” is not responsible for any possible losses caused by use of the product, including but not limited to losses.