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-- by Joel T. Patz
What's the stock market doing with your money? Window On WallStreet Deluxe Investor 5.0 lets you examine stock fundamentals and technical indicators that describe market conditions, helping you choose appropriate vehicles for your investments.
The charting window is the core of Window On WallStreet. After selecting the securities you want to monitor, you can develop charts to show everything from price movements to moving averages, choosing from a library of more than 150 indicators that you can overlay on a chart or, for clarity, place in separate panes.
Version 5.0 adds new analysis templates (predefined chart layouts). You can also create alerts that look for user-specified conditions and register changing market environments, such as when the high, low, close or volume values change by a percentage you designate.
Also new in version 5.0 is the Rational Analysis Technology Expert (RATE), which the developer says offers superior buy and sell signals. RATE is far from foolproof. In one plot we created, following the RATE indicator's advice would have led to financial losses, with buy and sell signals occurring at precisely the wrong points.
With Window On WallStreet, you download data from a variety of online services, including CompuServe and Dial Data. A CD-ROM of historical data ships with the product, so in order to be current, you'll usually only have to download a quarter's worth of information. You can also automatically update your Quicken portfolio.
The CD-ROM presents financial advisor Jonathan Pond in a multimedia (video and text) interactive introduction to financial planning. Mostly talking-head videos, there are elementary quizzes and planning tools for novices.
Though it has a more straighforward user interface than Omega Research's SuperCharts, Window on WallStreet is less than perfect. An indicator placed on a chart to look for sell signals for a certain stock could not be deleted when the alert was never triggered. Beginners will be tempted to add many indicators, thus creating an overwhelming chart. Fortunately, the documentation is thorough and clear.
Window On WallStreet offers fast, customizable analysis, but the problems with indicators and its awkward interface keep it off the WinList.