What Is A Pair Scanner


What is a Pair Scanner?

A Pair Scanner is a powerful tool used in the world of finance and trading to identify and analyze potential trading opportunities in the stock market. It is a software program or online platform that helps traders and investors to scan and analyze pairs of financial instruments, such as stocks, currencies, or commodities, based on predetermined criteria to find potential trade setups.

Pair scanning is based on the principle of correlation, which measures the relationship between two or more financial instruments. Pair Scanners utilize advanced algorithms to analyze historical price data, technical indicators, and other factors to identify pairs of assets that exhibit a high degree of correlation or divergence.

By using a Pair Scanner, traders can identify opportunities for trading strategies such as pair trading, where they buy one asset while simultaneously selling another asset that is highly correlated. This strategy allows traders to profit from the relative performance of two assets, rather than relying on the overall direction of the market.

Furthermore, Pair Scanners can also be used to identify potential arbitrage opportunities. Arbitrage refers to the practice of simultaneously buying and selling an asset in different markets to profit from the price discrepancies between them. Pair Scanners can quickly scan multiple markets and identify such price discrepancies, allowing traders to execute profitable arbitrage trades.

Pair Scanners are commonly used by professional traders, hedge funds, and quantitative analysts who rely on data-driven trading strategies. However, they are also popular among individual retail traders who can benefit from the speed, accuracy, and analysis provided by these tools.

With the advancement of technology, Pair Scanners have evolved to offer additional features such as real-time data feeds, customizable scanning criteria, and integration with trading platforms. This allows traders to stay updated with market movements and quickly identify potential trading opportunities.

How does a Pair Scanner work?

A Pair Scanner works by using advanced algorithms and data analysis techniques to identify pairs of financial instruments that exhibit a high degree of correlation or divergence. The scanner takes into account various factors such as historical price data, technical indicators, and other market variables to evaluate the relationship between different assets.

The first step in the process is to select the financial instruments that will be analyzed. This can include stocks, currencies, commodities, or any other tradable assets. The Pair Scanner then retrieves historical price data for the selected assets from a data provider or an integrated database.

Once the price data is obtained, the Pair Scanner calculates various statistical measures such as correlation coefficients and standard deviations to determine the strength and direction of the relationship between the assets. Correlation coefficients range from -1 to +1, where -1 indicates a strong negative correlation, +1 indicates a strong positive correlation, and 0 indicates no correlation.

The Pair Scanner then applies preset criteria or customizable filters to identify pairs that meet specific trading strategies or criteria. For example, a trader may set criteria to identify pairs with a correlation coefficient above a certain threshold or pairs that have exhibited a recent divergence in prices.

After the initial scanning process, the Pair Scanner generates a list of potential trading opportunities or pairs that meet the specified criteria. Traders can then further analyze these pairs to identify entry and exit points, calculate risk-reward ratios, and develop trading strategies.

Some Pair Scanners also provide real-time data feeds, allowing traders to monitor the performance of selected pairs and receive alerts when certain conditions are met. This helps traders stay informed and take immediate action on potential trading opportunities.

In addition to the scanning and analysis features, many Pair Scanners offer integration with trading platforms, allowing traders to directly execute trades based on the identified pairs. This streamlines the trading process and eliminates the need for manual order placement.

Overall, a Pair Scanner automates the process of identifying and analyzing potential trading opportunities, saving traders time and providing them with valuable insights to make informed trading decisions.

Different types of Pair Scanners

Pair Scanners come in various types and configurations, offering different features and functionalities to cater to the diverse needs of traders and investors. Here are some common types of Pair Scanners:

  1. Desktop-based Pair Scanners: These are software programs that need to be installed on a computer. They offer advanced scanning and analysis capabilities, allowing traders to customize their scanning criteria and analyze a wide range of financial instruments.
  2. Web-based Pair Scanners: These are online platforms that can be accessed through a web browser without the need to install any software. They typically offer real-time data feeds, customizable scanning filters, and integration with trading platforms for seamless execution of trades.
  3. Broker-integrated Pair Scanners: Some brokers provide their own Pair Scanners as part of their trading platform. These scanners are often tailored to the specific assets offered by the broker and may have limited customization options compared to standalone scanners.
  4. Algorithmic Pair Scanners: These scanners utilize complex algorithms and mathematical models to identify and analyze pairs of assets. They often incorporate machine learning techniques to continuously improve the scanning accuracy and adapt to changing market conditions.
  5. Pair Scanners for specific markets: Certain Pair Scanners are designed specifically for particular markets, such as forex, stocks, or commodities. These scanners may offer specialized features and indicators tailored to the characteristics of the specific market.

It is important for traders to choose a Pair Scanner that aligns with their trading style, preferences, and the financial instruments they wish to analyze. Some scanners may focus on short-term trading strategies, while others may be better suited for long-term investing or specific trading techniques such as pairs trading or arbitrage.

Traders should consider factors such as scanning speed, accuracy, ease of use, customization options, and integration with other trading tools when selecting a Pair Scanner. It is also recommended to try out different scanners through free trials or demo accounts to assess their effectiveness and suitability before committing to a particular scanner.

Benefits of using a Pair Scanner

Using a Pair Scanner can provide traders and investors with numerous advantages in their trading activities. Here are some key benefits of using a Pair Scanner:

  1. Increased Efficiency: Pair Scanners automate the process of identifying and analyzing potential trading opportunities. This saves traders a significant amount of time that would otherwise be spent manually searching for pairs and conducting analysis.
  2. Objective Analysis: Pair Scanners provide objective analysis based on predefined criteria and mathematical models. This reduces the impact of emotional bias and allows traders to make more informed decisions based on data-driven insights.
  3. Advanced Data Analysis: Pair Scanners use sophisticated algorithms and statistical measures to analyze historical price data, technical indicators, and other factors. This enables traders to gain a deeper understanding of the relationship between different assets and identify patterns that may not be apparent to the naked eye.
  4. Identification of Trading Opportunities: Pair Scanners can quickly scan through a wide range of financial instruments and identify pairs that meet specific trading criteria. This helps traders uncover potential trading setups that they may have missed otherwise.
  5. Customization and Flexibility: Many Pair Scanners offer customizable scanning filters, allowing traders to define their own criteria for identifying pairs. This enables traders to align the scanner with their preferred trading strategies and adapt to changing market conditions.
  6. Real-time Market Monitoring: Some Pair Scanners provide real-time data feeds and alerts, keeping traders updated with market movements and potential trading opportunities. This helps traders to stay responsive and take prompt action when favorable conditions arise.
  7. Integration with Trading Platforms: Pair Scanners that integrate with trading platforms allow traders to execute trades seamlessly from within the scanner. This streamlines the trading process and eliminates the need for manual order placement.
  8. Improving Trading Performance: By providing valuable insights and helping traders identify high-probability trade setups, Pair Scanners can contribute to improved trading performance and potentially increase profitability.

Overall, using a Pair Scanner provides traders and investors with a competitive edge by combining the power of technology, data analysis, and automation to identify and analyze potential trading opportunities in a more efficient and objective manner.

Popular Pair Scanners in the market

There are several pair scanners available in the market, each offering unique features and capabilities. Here are some of the popular pair scanners widely used by traders and investors:

  1. TradeStation: TradeStation is a well-known platform that provides robust pair scanning capabilities. It offers customizable scanning filters, real-time data feeds, and integration with their trading platform, allowing traders to execute trades directly from the scanner.
  2. Thinkorswim: Thinkorswim, owned by TD Ameritrade, is another widely used pair scanning platform. It provides advanced scanning tools, real-time streaming data, and a wide range of technical indicators to analyze pairs across various markets.
  3. Finviz: Finviz is a popular web-based pair scanner that offers a comprehensive set of scanning filters and visualization tools. It allows traders to scan pairs based on various criteria, such as performance, correlation, and technical patterns.
  4. QuantConnect: QuantConnect is an algorithmic pair scanner that offers a cloud-based platform for developing and executing trading strategies. It provides access to a large historical data library and supports multiple programming languages for coding custom trading algorithms.
  5. Koyfin: Koyfin is a versatile financial analysis platform that includes pair scanning features. It offers a wide range of indicators, charting tools, and customizable scanning criteria. Koyfin also provides insights and research across different asset classes.
  6. StockPair: StockPair is a specialized pair scanning platform for trading stock pairs. It focuses on identifying and analyzing pairs of stocks that exhibit high correlation or divergence in their performance, providing traders with opportunities for pair trading.
  7. MetaStock: MetaStock is a popular pair scanning software that caters to traders across various markets. It offers extensive technical analysis tools, advanced scanning filters, and integration with other trading platforms.
  8. MultiCharts: MultiCharts is a comprehensive trading software that includes pair scanning capabilities. It provides customizable scanning filters, real-time market data, and support for developing and deploying automated trading strategies.

These are just a few examples of the many pair scanners available in the market. When choosing a pair scanner, it is essential to consider factors such as your trading goals, level of expertise, budget, and specific requirements to find a scanner that best suits your needs.

Factors to consider when choosing a Pair Scanner

With a wide range of pair scanners available, it is important to consider several factors before selecting the one that best suits your trading needs. Here are some key factors to consider:

  1. Scanning Capabilities: Assess the scanning capabilities of the pair scanner, including the range of financial instruments it can analyze, the depth of historical data it can access, and the variety of scanning filters and indicators it offers. Ensure that the scanner can scan the specific assets and markets you are interested in.
  2. Customization Options: Look for a pair scanner that allows you to customize scanning criteria and filters. This will ensure that you can adapt the scanner to your preferred trading strategies and specific market conditions.
  3. Real-time Data Feeds: Consider whether the pair scanner provides real-time data feeds or delayed data. Real-time data feeds enable you to stay updated with market movements and react promptly to trading opportunities.
  4. User-friendly Interface: Evaluate the user interface of the pair scanner. It should be intuitive, easy to navigate, and provide a smooth user experience. A cluttered or complex interface can hinder your efficiency and effectiveness in using the scanner.
  5. Integration with Trading Platform: If you prefer executing trades directly from the pair scanner, check if it integrates with your preferred trading platform. Seamless integration allows you to place trades without switching between different applications.
  6. Technical Support: Consider the level of technical support offered by the pair scanner provider. Prompt and efficient support can be essential in resolving any issues or clarifying queries that may arise during your use of the scanner.
  7. Pricing: Compare the pricing structures of different pair scanners. Some scanners may have a one-time purchase fee, while others may require a monthly or annual subscription. Consider your budget and the value provided by the scanner when making a decision.
  8. Reviews and Reputation: Research customer reviews and the reputation of the pair scanner provider. Look for feedback on the accuracy of the scanner, the level of customer support, and the overall user experience. This will give you insights into the reliability and effectiveness of the scanner.

By carefully considering these factors, you can select a pair scanner that aligns with your trading goals, preferences, and technical requirements. Remember that finding the right pair scanner plays a crucial role in enhancing your trading efficiency and identifying profitable trading opportunities.

Tips for using a Pair Scanner effectively

Using a pair scanner can be a valuable tool in your trading arsenal. Here are some tips to help you make the most of your pair scanner and maximize its effectiveness:

  1. Define your trading strategy: Before using a pair scanner, have a clear understanding of your trading strategy and objectives. This will help you define the criteria and filters you need to set in the scanner to identify potential pairs according to your strategy.
  2. Select the right time frame: Choose the appropriate time frame for scanning pairs based on your trading style and objectives. Different time frames can reveal different trends and patterns, so consider using multiple time frames to get a comprehensive view of the market.
  3. Refine your scanning criteria: Continuously refine and optimize your scanning criteria based on market conditions and your trading results. This will help you identify more accurate and relevant trading opportunities while filtering out false signals.
  4. Combine with other analysis techniques: Use the pair scanner as a tool to complement other analysis techniques. Consider incorporating fundamental analysis, technical analysis, and market sentiment analysis alongside the scanner’s results to make well-informed trading decisions.
  5. Perform thorough analysis: Once the pair scanner identifies potential trading opportunities, conduct in-depth analysis of the pairs that meet your criteria. Evaluate factors such as historical performance, correlation strength, price patterns, and fundamental factors before executing trades.
  6. Monitor and adjust positions: Regularly monitor the performance of the pairs in your portfolio and make adjustments as needed. Use the pair scanner to identify entry and exit points, as well as potential profit targets and stop-loss levels.
  7. Utilize risk management techniques: Implement proper risk management techniques when trading pairs identified by the scanner. Set appropriate position sizes, diversify your portfolio, and use stop-loss orders to limit potential losses.
  8. Stay updated with market news: Stay informed about economic events, news releases, and market sentiment that may impact the performance of the pairs you are trading. Incorporate market news and events into your analysis to make more accurate trading decisions.
  9. Continuously learn and adapt: The market is constantly evolving, and so should your trading approach. Continuously learn from your trading experiences, track your results, and adapt your scanning criteria and trading strategies based on lessons learned.
  10. Practice and refine: Practice using the pair scanner in a simulated trading environment before committing real capital. This will allow you to refine your scanning techniques, test different strategies, and gain confidence in using the scanner effectively.

By following these tips, you can harness the power of a pair scanner to identify potential trading opportunities, enhance your analysis, and make more informed trading decisions in the market.

Pros and cons of using a Pair Scanner

Using a pair scanner can offer numerous advantages, but it also comes with its own set of drawbacks. Here are the pros and cons of using a pair scanner:


  1. Time-saving: Pair scanners automate the process of identifying and analyzing potential trading opportunities, saving traders a significant amount of time compared to manual analysis.
  2. Data-driven decisions: Pair scanners provide objective analysis based on predefined criteria and mathematical models, helping traders make more informed and data-driven trading decisions.
  3. Advanced data analysis: Pair scanners utilize sophisticated algorithms and statistical measures to analyze historical price data and technical indicators, allowing traders to uncover patterns and relationships that may not be evident to the naked eye.
  4. Identification of trading opportunities: Pair scanners can quickly scan through a wide range of financial instruments and identify pairs that meet specific trading criteria, helping traders discover potential trading setups that they may have missed otherwise.
  5. Customization and flexibility: Many pair scanners offer customizable scanning filters, allowing traders to tailor the scanner to their preferred trading strategies and adapt to changing market conditions.
  6. Real-time market monitoring: Some pair scanners provide real-time data feeds and alerts, helping traders stay informed about market movements and take prompt action on potential trading opportunities.
  7. Integration with trading platforms: Pair scanners that integrate with trading platforms allow traders to execute trades seamlessly from within the scanner, streamlining the trading process and eliminating the need for manual order placement.


  1. Reliance on historical data: Pair scanners heavily rely on historical price data and technical indicators, which may not always reflect current market conditions. Fundamental factors and market sentiment can influence price movements, which may not be captured in historical data.
  2. False signals: Pair scanners may produce false signals or generate potential trading opportunities that do not materialize. Traders need to exercise caution and conduct their own analysis before executing trades based solely on scanner results.
  3. Complexity: Some pair scanners can be complex to use, especially for beginners. Understanding the various scanning filters, indicators, and customization options may require a learning curve and a strong understanding of trading concepts.
  4. Over-reliance on automation: Relying solely on a pair scanner may lead to overdependence on automation and neglecting the importance of human judgment and intuition. Traders should use pair scanners as a tool to complement their own analysis rather than relying solely on its outputs.
  5. Cost: Some pair scanners come with a significant cost, especially those with advanced features and real-time data feeds. Traders need to assess the value provided by the scanner and ensure that it is cost-effective for their trading needs.
  6. Technical issues: Pair scanners are software programs that may encounter technical issues or downtime. Traders should consider the reliability and stability of the scanner before committing to its usage.

Considering these pros and cons, traders need to weigh the benefits and drawbacks of using a pair scanner to determine if it aligns with their trading approach and enhances their overall trading experience.

Common mistakes to avoid when using a Pair Scanner

While using a pair scanner can be a powerful tool in your trading arsenal, it’s important to recognize and avoid common mistakes that traders may make. By being mindful of these pitfalls, you can maximize the effectiveness of your pair scanner and improve your trading results. Here are some common mistakes to avoid:

  1. Blindly relying on scanner results: One of the biggest mistakes traders make is blindly relying on the pair scanner without conducting independent analysis. It’s crucial to use the scanner as a starting point and then perform thorough analysis to confirm the scanner’s results.
  2. Over-optimizing scanning criteria: While customization is a valuable feature of pair scanners, it’s important not to over-optimize your scanning criteria. Over-optimization can lead to results that look good in historical data but fail to perform well in real-time market conditions.
  3. Ignoring risk management: Some traders become overly focused on finding trading opportunities using the pair scanner and neglect to implement effective risk management strategies. It’s essential to manage your risk by setting appropriate position sizes, using stop-loss orders, and diversifying your portfolio.
  4. Not adapting to changing market conditions: Market conditions are constantly evolving, and what works today may not work tomorrow. Traders should regularly review and adjust their scanning criteria as market conditions change to ensure their pair scanner continues to generate valid and relevant trading opportunities.
  5. Chasing every scanner signal: Not every signal generated by the pair scanner will result in a profitable trade. Traders need to exercise discipline and patience by selecting only high-quality signals and ignoring lower-probability trade setups.
  6. Failure to keep a trading journal: Many traders overlook the importance of keeping a trading journal when using a pair scanner. Tracking your trades, including entry and exit points, reasons for taking the trade, and the outcome, can provide valuable insights and help identify areas for improvement.
  7. Not staying updated with market news: Failing to stay informed about market news and events can limit the effectiveness of your pair scanner. Economic releases, earnings reports, and geopolitical developments can significantly impact the performance of pairs. Incorporate market news into your analysis to make more informed trading decisions.
  8. Overtrading: Some traders get caught up in the excitement of using a pair scanner and end up overtrading, taking too many trades based solely on scanner results. It’s important to maintain discipline and patience, only executing trades that align with your trading strategy and meet your risk-reward criteria.
  9. Not backtesting scanning criteria: Backtesting is a crucial step to verify the effectiveness of your scanning criteria and to evaluate how it would have performed in different market conditions. Failing to backtest can lead to suboptimal results and missed opportunities.
  10. Insufficient knowledge of pair trading strategies: Pair trading involves more than just identifying correlated or divergent pairs. Traders need a solid understanding of pair trading strategies and risk management techniques to effectively capitalize on pair scanner results.

By avoiding these common mistakes, you can use a pair scanner more effectively and increase your chances of success in the markets. Remember that using a pair scanner should be a supplement to your trading skills and knowledge, rather than a substitute for them.

Future trends in Pair Scanning technology

As technology continues to advance, the field of pair scanning is expected to evolve and bring forth new trends and innovations. Here are some future trends in pair scanning technology to watch out for:

  1. Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML): The integration of AI and ML into pair scanning technology is expected to enhance the accuracy and efficiency of scanners. These technologies can analyze vast amounts of data, learn from patterns, and adapt to changing market conditions, improving the quality of trading signals.
  2. Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Sentiment Analysis: Pair scanners may incorporate NLP and sentiment analysis capabilities to analyze news articles, social media data, and financial reports to gauge market sentiment. This can provide additional insights and help traders factor in market sentiment when identifying pairs for potential trading opportunities.
  3. Big Data Analytics: With the growth of big data, pair scanners can harness this wealth of information to improve the quality of scanning and analysis. By analyzing large volumes of data from various sources, including alternative data sets, pair scanners can uncover hidden patterns and correlations that may not be evident from traditional market data.
  4. Real-time and Streaming Data: Pair scanners will continue to evolve to provide even faster real-time and streaming data feeds. This allows traders to stay updated and react quickly to market movements and changing pair correlations, enabling more timely execution of trades.
  5. Enhanced Visualization and User Interface: Pair scanners are likely to offer more intuitive and visually appealing interfaces with enhanced visualization capabilities. Graphs, heat maps, and other graphical representations can help traders identify patterns and relationships more easily, leading to more informed trading decisions.
  6. Cloud-based Solutions: Cloud-based pair scanning solutions are expected to become more prevalent, enabling traders to access and analyze pair data from anywhere and on any device. These platforms offer scalability, flexibility, and the ability to easily integrate with other trading tools and platforms.
  7. Social Trading Integration: Pair scanners may integrate social trading features, allowing traders to share their pair scanning setups and insights with others. This fosters collaboration, idea generation, and sharing of best practices among traders, creating a community-driven approach to pair trading.
  8. Increased Automation: Pair scanners will continue to automate and streamline various trading tasks, such as order execution and position management. This can reduce human error, improve efficiency, and free up time for traders to focus on strategic decision-making.
  9. Risk Management Integration: Future pair scanners may include more advanced risk management features, such as position sizing calculators and risk-reward analysis tools. These features can help traders better manage their risk and optimize their overall trading performance.
  10. Integration with Decentralized Finance (DeFi): With the rise of DeFi, pair scanning technology may integrate with decentralized exchanges and platforms. This opens up opportunities to scan pairs across multiple decentralized markets, providing traders with a wider range of trading options.

These future trends in pair scanning technology are expected to further enhance the capabilities of scanners and provide traders with more sophisticated tools for identifying and capitalizing on pair trading opportunities.