How To Set Backtest Date Range

Example how to select and set date range window to be backtested. Normally when you change chart period it changes the number of days being backtested which means as you increas the chart period (for example from 5min to 15min) you also increase the number of days traded, so you can not compare apples to apples for which period would yield best returns for your strategy. Now you can. Incorporate this code replacing buy and sell with your strategy, then simply input the From and To dates in Format -> Inputs, and then change the chart period to view updated results.

NOTE: There is a limit in backtesting to 2000 orders, so please be aware of this when setting your date ranges. If you set your range too high, you may be exceeding this limit on some periods and not on others, so this would yield incorrect comparison of returns per period. If you see in your backtesting results that you are nearing this limit for one of your periods you are testing, then reduce the date range to a smaller number of days.


(Thanks to @Gesundheit "Adeel" for pointing me in the right direction on this!)
Nov 04
Informacje o Wersji: Changed default settings to remove need for setting present date if backtesting up to current moment in time.
Apr 27
Informacje o Wersji: Per requests added examples of:

- Using input statements for MA lengths.

- Using date range condition within execution.

- BONUS example of creating a function for date range.

Also added simple error checking to input statements for month and day.
Apr 27
Informacje o Wersji: Added "max_bars_back=2000" in top strategy line to prevent possibility of exceeding 2000 event limit. This will prevent that error from possibly occurring.
Sep 18
Informacje o Wersji: Statement in "Release Notes" immediately above is incorrect. Setting "max_bars_back=2000" in top strategy line does not prevent possibility of exceeding 2000 order limit. It instead is used to manually define how many historical bars are preloaded for indicator calculations. If you receive an ‘out of depth at index’ error this means something in your script calculations requires a certain number of historical bars and for some reason those bars were not automatically allocated. Raising this setting may help prevent that error from occurring.

For preventing the error on exceeding 2000 orders you must take steps to reduce the number of trades. Various means to do this include changing the range you are backtesting, changing the period, changing the frequency of how often your strategy trades, etc.
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There is a more recent example script which also shows how to automatically set the date range window to be backtested from X days or weeks ago to present. Additional options are also included to manually set the date range or to show entire range available. It can be seen here:

It is very helpful. Is it possible to exit to cash at finish to cash to compare with Buy and hold. Thanks.
allanster areddy01
@areddy01, this script is intended only as an example of how to include option to manually set your desired date range to backtest. Net profit is calculated from first entry through last exit. Buy and hold is calculated from first entry through close, so with the formation of each new candle your buy and hold will change. If you wanted to compare the two you would need to manually calculate buy and hold for the same range as net profit. The values needed for this are shown in list of trades.
allanster allanster
@areddy01, my previous reply stripped the bracketed 1 that I typed after close. "Buy and hold is calculated from first entry through close previous to current bar".
Fabulous...Thanks so much !!!
Awesome, thanks, helped me a lot!
allanster millioneuroman
@millioneuroman, great to hear it helped. I have a more recent example which adds the ability to also automatically set the date range back by a certain duration from the present. You can see it here...

@allanster, even better, thanks a million ;)
Thanks this is awesome, in v4 remove "when =" from "when = window()"
allanster IsThatACat
@IsThatACat, perhaps I misunderstand your comment, but "when =" is necessary in this script regardless of whether or not you are using Pine v4. Removing 'when =" would result in a compilation error.
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