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mStocks Help

Help Topics

Welcome to mStocks+

posted Nov 22, 2015, 5:44 PM by Admin Manager   [ updated Nov 23, 2015, 4:11 PM ]

Thanks so much for your interest in mStocks+. We hope you enjoy our software. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to reach-out to us. We love hearing from our users and learning how they are using our products. It's a great way for us to hear about new features and changes that need to be made. 

If you like what you see, please consider upgrading to the paid version via the link on the main window.

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mStocks Overview

mStocks+ is a great resource for both passive and active traders. We have tried hard to make our software work for a number of different scenarios. Which one of the following scenarios fits your trading style?

The "Watcher" - if you are simply interested in watching what is happening in the market and keeping track of price changes for a handful of stocks, we are definitely the right solution for you. We offer both textual and graphical representation of trading data. You can also keep up-to-date with our news articles and other features. Follow a small number of symbols or many, it's up to you...

The "Passive Trader" - you own a few stocks and other investments, but you don't trade that often. You are in for the long term and are primarily interested in tracking at how the stocks you hold positions in are doing. mStocks+ supports basic positions just for you. This allow you to enter the number of shares you own and your total cost basis. From this, mStocks+ will let you know how your investments are doing each day as well as overall.

The "Active Trader" - like the passive trader, you too are interested in your investment performance. However, your trades are more complicated and you need to keep track of individual transactions (buy, sell, split, dividends, deposits, etc...). It's too complicated for you to determine your shares owned and cost basis, so why not let mStocks+ do it for you. This is where our advanced positions and portfolio support comes in. You enter the transactions that you have made and mStocks+ does the heavy lifting.

Key Features of mStocks+:
  • Easily monitor your investment positions 
  • Investigate new trading opportunities 
  • Visualize performance historically and as it happens 
  • Keep current on news impacting stocks you follow 
  • Tag stocks to create investment groupings and monitor the groups return 
  • Tell mStocks+ about your investments via our basic or advanced positions features
  • Analyze gains, losses and visualize your return on positions you hold 
If you like our software, please consider rating us in the App Store. Positive ratings and comments drive sales and allow us to keep bringing new features...

You can always reach us at

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Free Version Limitations

If you have just downloaded mStocks+ from the app store and are yet to upgrade to the full version, there are some limitations placed on your version of mStocks+. We believe these to be reasonable and you should have no trouble fully utilizing the software.

Limitations include:
  • Add and monitor a maximum of 7 symbols 
  • New reader limited to a single article 
  • Charting limited to 6 month view only
Outside of these, all other functionality is available for you to test drive.

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Purchasing the Full Access Version

If you find that you like mStocks+ and would like to purchase the full version, click the "Full Version" link on the top of the screen. This will bring up the InApp purchase window and you can make your purchase securely with the App Store.

Getting Started

posted Nov 22, 2015, 5:43 PM by Admin Manager   [ updated Nov 23, 2015, 4:16 PM ]

The following will help you get started with mStocks+. It's meant to introduce the navigation and provide an overview of the major features. Several of the areas discussed here have more detailed help topics available.

System Menu Bar

When you first launch mStocks+, the main window will open and show on your screen. You should also notice a popup window show up in the system menu bar. This popup will let you know that the program is running and monitoring your investments. If you click on the mStocks+ icon in the system menu bar, you will get a menu that will allow you to access program features. These include:
  • About Screen 
  • Toggle Main Window 
  • Toggle Ticker 
  • Set Preferences 
  • Setup Hot Keys 
  • mStocks+ Help 
  • Quit mStocks+ 
mStocks+ was designed to run in the background and does not require you to have the main window open all the time. You can confidently close the main window and know that all symbols will continue to be updated. You can easily open the main window by pressing the hot key (default is command-S) or by clicking on the system menu icon and choosing the "Toggle Main Window" menu option. (Hint - toggle the hot key when the window is open and it will close).

Main Window Overview

mStocks+ has been designed as a single window application. You have a variety of way to configure the window to your preferred style and can also choose to hide certain areas.

Within the main window, you'll notice that there are both vertical and horizontal sliders that allow you to change the dimensions between the sections. You can adjust the sliders to show more of the symbols list and less of the news and charts view (or vice versa). Similarly, you can change the dimensions between the news view and charts view. Slide these to set your preferences. mStocks+ remembers the positions and will retain them the next time the window is opened or the program restarts.

Symbol List

The symbol list at the top of the main window shows the symbols and other instruments that you have added to mStocks+. You can add symbols by performing a symbol lookup and you can remove them by selecting the delete option. You can also sort and filter the list of symbols based on a number of criteria. More on searching and filtering in another help topic.

If you right click on the symbol list, you will be shown a popup menu from which you can access additional features.

Detail Panel

The detail panel is shown on the right side of the screen. You can toggle the panel open or closed by clicking the detail panel toggle icon. When the detail panel is open, you can see additional information on the selected symbol. You can also assign tags, and edit the cost basis and shares owned for basic positions that you take in a symbol. See 'Basic Positions' help topic for more details on basic positions.

The sections on the detail panel (Symbol Details, Positions, and Tags) can be collapsed by clicking on the title. This will offer additional room on small laptop displays.

New Articles

When you click on a symbol in the symbol list, current news articles will be loaded and shown in the news list. Clicking on an article will open the news reader and you can read the article. 

Charting & Symbol Details

Like the news reader, charts and other details are shown when you click on a symbol. There are several tabs in the charting and details area that show additional information about the symbol. These include:
  • Stock Charts 
  • Symbol History 
  • Heat Map 
  • Performance 
There are additional help topics that go over each of these.

Adding and Filtering Symbols

Symbol Lookup

To add a new symbol to your symbols list, simply type a name or ticker symbol into the search box and press enter. You will be shown a result set that matches your criteria. Pick the symbol that you are interested in. It will be added to the symbols list and the relevant details will be downloaded and updated on the main window.

Filtering Symbols

At some point, the number of symbols that you have in the symbols list will become unmanageable. This is where filtering becomes valuable. Filtering can be done in two different ways.

Tag Filtering - You can filter the symbols list for symbols that have similar tags.
Portfolio Filtering - You can pick a specific portfolio and only show the symbols that are on the selected portfolio.

Initial Setup

posted Nov 22, 2015, 5:43 PM by Admin Manager   [ updated Nov 24, 2015, 5:37 PM ]

Before you go too far, it's important that you take the time to setup a couple of settings in mStocks+. 

Base Currency

mStocks allows you to add symbols that trade in different currencies in the symbols list.  You can see the currency that the symbol uses on the Detail Panel as well as via a column that can be shown in the symbols list. In order to be able show total value and other monetary fields, mStocks+ will convert the different symbol's currencies into a base currency. This base currency is used throughout the App to show you consistent monetary values.  Base Currency is set in the preferences screen.

It's important that you pick your base currency before you start entering positions you have in stocks.  Once you start adding positions, the base currency is locked in and can't be changed.  Therefore you should set this as soon as you get started.  The Base Currency defaults to USD.

Show Mode

Another important feature that sometimes trips our users up is the Show Mode. You can setup mStocks+ to only show in the system menu bar or show in the system menu bar and the main menu bar like normal Mac applications.  This is a preference that you can choose in Preferences.  Unlike the Base Currency, you can change this at any time.  We default to show only in Menu Bar.

Hot Keys

You should get accustom to using the Hot Keys to show the Main Window and the Ticker Tape.  By default the hot key are as follows:


The command and shift keys need to be held down when you press either S or T to get the toggle to work. If you don't like the default hot keys, you can change these to what ever combination you like.

Symbol Lookup

posted Nov 22, 2015, 5:43 PM by Admin Manager   [ updated Nov 23, 2015, 4:17 PM ]

Adding additional symbols to the symbols list is quick and easy. You simply enter the ticker symbol or name of the company that you are looking for in the symbol lookup field and press enter. mStocks+ will perform a search and return a result set of all symbols that match your search criteria. Navigate to the symbol that you are looking for with the arrow keys and press enter or double click to select the symbol. This will cause mStocks+ to perform a symbol lookup and load the details, news and charts. These will be shown on the main window and the new symbol will be selected in the symbols list.

Symbol search field for "netflix":

Search results for "netflix":

Symbol Data Providers 

When you do a search, mStocks+ pulls data from both Yahoo and Google. Chart data, quote history and news feeds always com from Yahoo, but the stock quotes are pulled from both providers. This is done to get a complete view of each symbol. We typically find that Google does a better job of providing after hours quotes for most symbols. The Google quotes are also real-time and not delayed like most Yahoo quotes. 

The actual ticker symbols that Google and Yahoo utilize are different and mStocks+ will convert between them. If you right click on a symbol and choose the Yahoo Quote or Google Quote option, you'll be sent to the provider's websites for more detail information. You'll notice when this is done, the lookup symbol will be different. You shouldn't need to be concerned about the difference other than to understand that it exists.

For example. Yahoo's symbol for Netflix is "NFLX". Google recognizes Netflix by "NASDAQ:NFLX".

Tags and Filters

posted Nov 22, 2015, 5:43 PM by Admin Manager   [ updated Nov 23, 2015, 4:23 PM ]

Tagging Symbols

Tags are textual labels that you assign to a collection of symbols. A symbol can have multiple tags. Tags are automatically created when you add one to a symbol and then can then be assigned to other symbols. The easiest way to tag a symbol is to use the Tags field on the Detail Panel. Here you simply type the name of the tag that you want to use. You'll notice that mStock+ will default to existing tags as you type. You can select an existing one, or create a new one.


You can also create and assign tags by right clicking on a symbol and selecting the "Tag with" menu option and then selecting either "Add New..." to create a new tag, or select an existing tag from the list of tags show.


If you find that you need to rename or delete tags, you can use the Manage Tags window. This is accessed via the "Managed Tags..." menu option on the popup menu when you right click on the symbols list.


To delete tags, select them and press the "delete" button. To edit a tag name, highlight it in the list by clicking on it and press enter. You will be able to edit the name directly in the list. Press close when you are done and all symbols that have the tags you updated will be changed.

Using Tags

Feel free to use tags how ever you find best meets your needs. Many of our customers use them to segment symbols based on industry, sector or specific focus areas of the company. You could create tags for "Technology", "Social Media", or "Retail". Use what best meets your trading needs.

Filtering your Symbols List

Filtering allows you to restrict the symbols in the symbols list to just those items that you are interested in. This can be done in two ways:

Filter on Tags - you can filter on tags that you have created
Filter on Portfolios - you can filter on portfolios that you have created.

In both cases, the symbols list will be restricted to just those items that match the filter criteria.

You can visually that if a filter is in effect by looking at the filter icon and filter textual label. In the screen image below, you can see that a filter is being performed on the "Technology" tag. Note that the filter icon is shaded blue. It will be clear when there is no filter being in place and the textual filter label will show "All Symbols".


To select a different filter, click on the filter text of the existing filter (in the case above, click on Technology). This will bring up the filter selection window as shown above. To change the filter, click on the new filter from the list. You can also click on the Clear Filter link to remove the existing filter. To close the filter popup without making changes, click on the close "X" icon.

You can also select and clear filters from the right-click popup menu. You will see options for "Filter on Tag..", "Filter on Portfolio..." and "Clear Filter" from the popup menu.

Impacts of Filters 

As mentioned already, filters change the list of symbols shown in the symbols list. However, this is not the only place that the changes that will be seen. When you are filtering, mStocks+ also changes some of the reports and graphs that you will see in the Charts and Details options shown at the bottom of the main screen. For examples, the heat map will be changed to only show symbols being filtered. Filtering also impacts some of the calculations of days return and total return shown in the system menu bar and in the mStocks+ status bar.

Symbols List

posted Nov 22, 2015, 5:43 PM by Admin Manager   [ updated Nov 23, 2015, 5:06 PM ]

The symbol list at the top of the main window shows the symbols and other instruments that you have added. You can add additional symbols by performing a symbol lookup and you can remove them by selecting the delete option. You can also filter the list of symbols that are shown based on a number of criteria.

Display Columns

When mStocks+ is initially installed, only a handful of columns are setup to be shown on the Symbols List. You can add and delete columns by right clicking on the column heading of any shown field. When you do this you will get a popup menu that will show all available columns. To add or remove a column, click on its name.

You can change the display order for columns by clicking on the column title and dragging it to a new position. You can change the default size of a column by clicking on the column spacer bar and dragging it to a new size.

If you single click on a column header, it will sort the symbols list on that field. Clicking again on the same header will sort again, but in the reverse order.

mStocks+ will remember the columns you have selected as well as the size and order. 

mStocks supports the following columns and data elements:

Trade DirectionA green up arrow or red down arrow representing the current day's trading direction
Stock SymbolThe stock ticker symbol for the stock or instrument.
NameThe name of the company for the symbol
ExchangeThe stock exchange for the symbol
Current PriceThe current trading price
Open PriceThe open price for the current trading day
Previous Close PriceThe close price for the previous trading day
Day's ChangeThe amount of change of the stock price for the current trading day
Day's Percent ChangeThe percentage change of the stock price for the current trading day
Day's ReturnThe amount of return for the trading day based on shares owned for this symbol.  Will be zero for symbols that you have no position in.
Extended Hours PriceThe current trading price in after hours trading
Extended Hours ChangeThe amount of change of the stock price for the after hours trading
Extended Hours Percent ChangeThe percentage change of the stock price for the after hours trading
VolumeThe volume change for the current trading day
Average VolumeThe 3 month average volume
Day Range GraphA graph representing the current stock price in relation to the stocks day low and day high prices
Day Range PercentA percentage representing the current stock price in relation to the stocks day low and day high prices
Day RangeThe range of trading showing days low and high
Day's Low PriceThe low price for the current trading day
Day's High PriceThe high price for the current trading day
52 Week Range GraphA graph representing the current stock price in relation to the stocks 52 week low and high prices
52 Week Range PercentageA percentage representing the current stock price in relation to the stocks 52 week low and high prices
52 Week RangeThe range of trading showing 52 week low and high
52 Week Low PriceThe low price for the past 52 weeks
52 Week High PriceThe high price for the past 52 weeks
PE Ratio (PE)The price to equity ratio
Earnings Per Share (EPS)The earnings per share
Market CapitalizationTotal market capitalization
Shares OwnedThe number of shares that you own of this symbol.   Will be zero for symbols that you have no position in.
Cost BasisThe total cost basis for the shares that you own of this symbol.   Will be zero for symbols that you have no position in.
Total ReturnThe total return you have for this symbol.  Will be zero for symbols that you have no position in.
Total Percent ReturnThe total percent return you have for this symbol.  Will be zero for symbols that you have no position in.
Total ValueThe total value you have in this symbol.   Will be zero for symbols that you have no position in.
Exchange RateThe current exchange rate for this symbol
CurrencyThe currency that this symbol is priced in
TagsA comma separated list of tags for this symbol

Editing Fields

There are 3 columns in the symbols list that can be edited. These are "Name", "Shares Owned" and "Cost Basis". You can double click on the value for these fields and you will be able to make changes. You can also select the symbol row that you wish to edit the field for and press the enter key to start the editing. Once you have edited a value, you can tab to the next. Press enter when you are done to have the change saved.

Deleting Symbols

If you wish to remove a symbol,  right click the row for the symbol and choose the delete option. You can also press the "delete" key. You will be prompted to confirm that you wish to delete the symbol. Deleting a symbol also removes all news articles, symbol history and chart data. Deletions can not be undone and you should think twice to make sure that you really want to do this. Note that you can always add the symbol again if you change your mind later.

NOTE - the most destructive thing about deleting symbols is in regard to basic and advanced positions. Deleting a symbol removes the shares owned and cost basis.  It also removes all transactions that are part of the symbol.


posted Nov 22, 2015, 5:42 PM by Admin Manager   [ updated Dec 5, 2015, 5:33 PM ]

mStocks has an incredibly powerful charting feature that supports overlays and oscillators. These features should fit the needs of the average investor as well as those technical charting masters. 

The chart is drawn for the selected symbol in the symbols list. The chart window is separated into three areas:

Main Chart - this is the top portion of the chart as depicted below. It's where the graph representing the symbols trading prices is drawn
Volume Chart - this is the middle section in the diagram below. It represents trading volume.
Oscillators Chart - the bottom area. Several different types of oscillators can be drawn here.

While the main chart is always shown, the volume and oscillators can be turned off making additional room for the main chart. You configure the bottom two sections in the layers and oscillators popup windows.  These are accessed by the icons below the chart. Note that if you shrink the chart by adjusting the spacer between the symbol list and chart area too small, the oscillator and/or volume sections may not be drawn. They will reappear as you make the chart area larger again. 

If you hover your mouse over the chart, you will see tracking lines as well as updates to the display to represent the price, volume and other data based on where your mouse is positioned.  Try it out.


Chart Types

mStocks+ support several different chart types for the Main Chart. You choose the chart type by clicking on the chart type drop down at the bottom left of the chart window. Try this out and see how the Main Chart changes based on your selection.
  • Mountain Chart
  • Line Chart
  • High-Low Chart
  • Candle Stick Chart
Chart Range

The charts can be drawn across several different time periods. These can range from a single day to full history for the symbol. You can select several increments between these. The chart range is changed by clicking on the range buttons below the chart.

Chart Themes

Themes are color schemes in which the chart is drawn. Pick the theme that fits your preference by clicking on the themes icon and then choosing a theme drop down. You can choose to draw the volume chart using red/green bars or using the theme color.  You can also toggle between showing and not showing the chart marker labels.


Layers are overlays that are drawn on top of the Main Chart. These layers can be configured via the Layers popup shown below. Choose the type of layer that you  would like to show and set the number of days.  You can also toggle Bollinger Bands and volume.


Oscillators are indicators that can be helpful for those symbols not showing significant variation in trends in either direction. They are typically used when a company's stock is in a horizontal or sideways trading pattern, or has not been able to establish a definite trend in a choppy market.

mStocks+ supports two Oscillator options:

Relative Strength Indicator (RSI) - the RSI is a technical momentum indicator that compares the magnitude of recent gains to recent losses in an attempt to determine overbought and oversold conditions. Overbought situations occur when a stock has an RSI that is equal to or greater than 70. Likewise, oversold situations are represented by an RSI of 30 or less. Oversold situation are buying opportunities whereas overbought conditions introduce downward price pressure.

Moving Average Convergence/Divergence (MACD) - the MACD is a trend-following momentum indicator that shows the relationship between two moving averages of prices. The MACD is calculated by subtracting the 26-day exponential moving average (EMA) from the 12-day EMA. A nine-day EMA of the MACD, called the "signal line", is then plotted on top of the MACD, functioning as a trigger for buy and sell signals.

Chart Scale

mStocks+ supports both linear and logarithmic chart scales.

News Reader

posted Nov 22, 2015, 5:42 PM by Admin Manager   [ updated Dec 5, 2015, 5:36 PM ]

The News Reader downloads and displays relevant news articles for each of the symbols on your symbols list.  Clicking on a symbol will result in the news list to be updated to match articles for the symbol.  These are shown in news articles list:

As you hover your mouse over the lists of articles, you will see a gray highlight over the indicated article. Click to read the article in the News Reader.  Note that if you are using the free version of mStocks+ you will only be able to launch the News Reader for the first article in the articles list.

Once the News Reader opens, you will see a window similar to that shown below.


By default, mStocks+ uses the Instapaper Mobilizer to remove all advertising and other nonessential information from the article. This allows for better reading but can some times miss portions of the article. If this occurs, simply click on the "Show Full Page" button to load the full article into the News Reader. If you prefer, you can open the full article in your default browser by clicking on "Open In Browser...".  There are settings in the Preferences screens that allow you to configure how the News Reader functions. For example, you can choose different mobilizers or chose to always have the articles load the full page version.

The "Prev" and "Next" buttons allow you to navigate through the full list of news articles for the current symbol.  The status bar gives you an indication of how many articles exist and which of them you are currently viewing.

Press the "Close" button to close the News Reader and return to the Main Window.

Historic Price Data

posted Nov 22, 2015, 5:42 PM by Admin Manager   [ updated Dec 5, 2015, 5:38 PM ]

In order to provide charting for symbols, mStocks+ automatically downloads 10 years of price data for each symbol. This raw data is shown in the History Price Data view.  You can view 1, 2, 3 or all 10 years of history by clicking on the filter option below the history list.  You can also export this data to a CSV spreadsheet if you would like to do additional analysis on the data.


You can sort on any of the fields by click on the column headings.

Heat Maps

posted Nov 22, 2015, 5:42 PM by Admin Manager   [ updated Dec 5, 2015, 5:42 PM ]

A heat map is a graphical representation of price data where the individual values are shown in a matrix and prices are represented as colors.  The darker the green color, the stronger the stock performance. The darker the red color, the weaker the performance.  Stock shown in white have not moved from their previous close price.


You can click on any of the squares in the heat map and the symbol represented by the color will be shown in the Symbols List.  

The symbols shown in the heat map represent those in the Symbols List.  Filtering the symbols list results in a similar filter on the heat map.

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