Thursday, December 31, 2009

December Trading Summary

RESULTS FOR DECEMBER
Contracts:263
Net $P/L:-2085
Wins:149
Losses:113
Win%:57
Avg$Win:64
Avg$Loss:-103

Out with a bang

10:10am CST - Nothing like going out of 2009 with a bang! Completely out of sync this morning and I'm quiting before I get the urge to revenge trade. Look for a weekend update with plans for 2010 trading which will be much different than 2009.

Just showing my one gold trade today - other trades had a similar story...


Net breakdown: 6E -$147, 6A -$145, ZS -$118, GGC -$204
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:5
Net $P/L:-614
Wins:1
Losses:4
Win%:20
Avg$Win:8
Avg$Loss:-155

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

1 more day

2:15pm CST - Finished at my low after being up $125 midday. 2 full stops at end of day on GCL and ZS...

Net breakdown: 6E $136, ZS -$126, GCL -$173
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:11
Net $P/L:-163
Wins:7
Losses:4
Win%:64
Avg$Win:50
Avg$Loss:-128

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

2 days left

2:30pm CST - Was in red most of day so glad to finish on plus side. Made more trades than planned but non-stock index markets were actually moving!


Net breakdown: 6E $66, GCL -$73, RLM -$86, ZS $172
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:10
Net $P/L:79
Wins:6
Losses:4
Win%:60
Avg$Win:78
Avg$Loss:-98

Monday, December 28, 2009

2 Stops

2:50pm CST - Plan to trade lightly this week and that equated to 2 trades today. Had small profits on both trades before stops got taken out. Both went on to hit targets later in day of course. Such is trading...


Net breakdown: GCL -$155, ZS -$80
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:2
Net $P/L:-235
Wins:0
Losses:2
Win%:0
Avg$Win:0
Avg$Loss:-117

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Christmas Eve Eve

3:10pm CST - Just 1 trade that went no where today. Merry Christmas to all! Back on Monday...

Net breakdown: ZS $7
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:1
Net $P/L:7
Wins:1
Losses:0
Win%:100
Avg$Win:7
Avg$Loss:0

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Monday again

2:00pm CST - It was a repeat of yesterday, finishing at my LOD, after being up $150 mid-morning. Likely no more trading this week for me (I should have said that a couple days ago). Between the lower holiday week volumes, sometimes higher spikes/volatility (with stops to tight), and me being out of sync, it has been a rough week.

Net breakdown: 6E -$181, ZS -$3, GCL -$105, RLM -$75, GGC $39
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:24
Net $P/L:-326
Wins:13
Losses:11
Win%:54
Avg$Win:68
Avg$Loss:-110

Monday, December 21, 2009

Winter Solstice

2:30pm CST - This shortest day of the year couldn't have ended any sooner. Merry Christmas to whoever was on the other side of my trades. I think I entered on every failed breakout on every chart today, except mini-Russell. Had a sell stop order to short CL at 74.30 but cancelled it when I entered a ZS trade. (I like to have no more than 1 open position at a time.) That would have been a good one! Shorted ZS in the last 15 min. of day at 10.675 and covered for a 1/4 cent. It then dropped 6 cents. I was my own worst enemy today...

Net breakdown: 6E -$202, ZS -$338, GCL -$285, RLM $248, GGC -$245
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:28
Net $P/L:-822
Wins:13
Losses:15
Win%:46
Avg$Win:72
Avg$Loss:-117

Friday, December 18, 2009

Beans Giveth, Crude Taketh

2:40pm CST - Too many charts to show today so I just posted the abysmal crude trades. Crude dug me a $300 hole early I had to dig out of. Beans to the rescue! After an initial botch there buying near open at 27.50 I eventually recovered. Added Gold to the mix today also. Note the P/L curve is ALL trades today (not just crude shown on left):
12/18/09 Crude Trades and P/L Summary All Trades

Net breakdown: RLM $177, ZS $316, GCL $-371, 6E $33, GGC $93
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:24
Net $P/L:249
Wins:13
Losses:11
Win%:54
Avg$Win:89
Avg$Loss:-82

Thursday, December 17, 2009

70 min.

2:40pm CST - Traded 70 minutes today and quit. Happy with $270 and not wanting to give any back. I'm going to start doing this more in the future - have a goal for the day and stop when I hit it. From the charts, you can see the great potential that existed in my ZS and RLM trades today. Got to work on that too. As I said before, when I start trading 2 lots - one will ride for glory and the other will pay for the gas and tolls.
12/17/09 Trades

Net breakdown: RLM(TF) $27, ZS $70, GCL $173
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:8
Net $P/L:270
Wins:6
Losses:2
Win%:75
Avg$Win:76
Avg$Loss:-94

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Half

2:30pm CST - I ended up half off my HOD thanks to two 6E trades in the chop after the FOMC. I packed it up after that. It would have been a great day but was just good in the end. Can't complain too much, who would listen? Should have held the first 6E trade and the last ZS trade longer -see chart. But then again, if I had held the first ZS trade longer, I likely would have been stopped out at breakeven instead of booking 3cents. Damned if you do, damned if you don't...
12/16/09 Trades

Net breakdown: 6E -$139, ZS $215, GCL $118
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:10
Net $P/L:193
Wins:7
Losses:3
Win%:70
Avg$Win:60
Avg$Loss:-75

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Whew

2:30pm CST - I got to trade smarter, not harder. Today my net P/L bounced back and forth from minus to plus or plus to minus 7 times to finish black but $95 off my high of day. I would show you the GCL chart with 14 trades on it but it is too embarrassing! "Overtrading 101" - sign me up!

Net breakdown: 6E -$47, ZS $232, GCL -$182, TF $47
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:23
Net $P/L:50
Wins:15
Losses:8
Win%:65
Avg$Win:57
Avg$Loss:-101

Monday, December 14, 2009

1 Lots

2:20pm CST - A few trades this morning but I'm not happy with myself despite the gain. Take a look at the ZS chart and you'll see why. For now, I am rationalizing this as the curse of 1-lot trading. When I start trading 2 lots, I will work much harder on letting one of them ride!
12/14/09 Trades

Net breakdown: 6E $148, ZS $145
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:4
Net $P/L:293
Wins:4
Losses:0
Win%:100
Avg$Win:73
Avg$Loss:0

Friday, December 11, 2009

Happy Hanukkah

2:50pm CST - Just a few trades on this slow day that starts Hanukkah.


Net breakdown: GCL $111, ZS -$118, 6E $141
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:5
Net $P/L:134
Wins:4
Losses:1
Win%:80
Avg$Win:63
Avg$Loss:-118

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Less than a second

2:40pm CST - I was going to stop when I got up $200 today but never quite made it but got close. My best trade of the day was the quickest I can ever recall being in the market less than a second! Crude is really wild! (Entry was a buy stop order at 70.20 (fill slipped a tick) and exit was a limit order.) Can you imagine the ES moving 2.75 pts. in less than a second during lunchtime, no news doldrums?
Crude Trade 12/10/09

Net breakdown: GCL -$61, ZS $147
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:19
Net $P/L:86
Wins:11
Losses:8
Win%:58
Avg$Win:70
Avg$Loss:-86

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Day Off

Took the day off. May take some more...

Monday, December 7, 2009

Chopped

3:00pm CST - Chopped to little bits today trying to hold winners longer. Having my AvgWin higher than my AvgLoss is not reassuring in today's case.

Net breakdown: 6E -$84, ZS -$300, GCL -$67, ES -$78
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:14
Net $P/L:-529
Wins:3
Losses:10
Win%:23
Avg$Win:124
Avg$Loss:-90

Friday, December 4, 2009

TGIF

2:30pm CST - Took it easy today after yesterday's snafu and with NFP report adding a lot of action I didn't want to get into trouble.

My biggest thing holding me back is not having the confidence(?) to hold on for big gains. I've been scalping so long it's engrained in my head and I need to find a way to wrap my head around holding trades, WINNING trades! Take a look at the 6E chart - only 1 trade for 5 pips but could have had 100+.
12/4/09 Trades

I've made the move to remove the auto bracket orders (target and stop) that get placed when I enter a position. Now I only have the stop order get placed with no target limit order. That way I can wait for price to make a nice move, in theory, before I place the exit order or exit with a trailed stop. But so far this week, that hasn't worked to well.

Scalping is okay for some traders I think, but I generally risk more on a trade (as many have observed through my avg.win and avg.loss stats) than I get reward for. But to make the numbers work the win% must be high and mine just hasn't been lately. Thus my 2009...

2010 will be the year of converting myself into a swing trader (or a scalper holding for points instead of ticks)!

No GCL system trades for me for awhile until much more forward testing can be done.

Net breakdown: ES $9, 6E $58, GCL $218, ZS -$58
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:11
Net $P/L:227
Wins:9
Losses:2
Win%:82
Avg$Win:47
Avg$Loss:-99

Thursday, December 3, 2009

1 Step Forward, 2 (or 3) Back

1:30pm CST - Bad day started early with 4 losing trades on the Euro getting clipped for 10-12 pips each after the Brits' interest rate news. And bad ended with buying the afternoon high in Crude, 76.96 and stopping out at a break to downside of the 15-min. inside bar at 76.69. Should have reversed crude trade right there but I am at my loss limit for the day. I need my head examined. Comments off.

Net breakdown: 6E -$574, ZS -$20, GCL -$475
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:35
Net $P/L:-1069
Wins:16
Losses:19
Win%:46
Avg$Win:71
Avg$Loss:-116

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Can Crude be tamed?

3:30pm CST - Made 2 system trades today on GCL and scalped the rest in GLC, 6E, and ZS. By "system" trades I mean mechanically following my new strat and doing what it tells me to do, more on that below. And by "scalp" I mean discretionary trading for small gains. I lost $200 on the system trades today (the 2 GCL trades between 10:30 and 11:00am on chart) but that is to be expected many days.
12/2/09 Trades

Net breakdown: GCL $95, ZS $166, 6E $66
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:28
Net $P/L:327
Wins:20
Losses:8
Win%:71
Avg$Win:37
Avg$Loss:-51

------------------------------------------
Crude is certainly wild and I wonder if it can be tamed enough to extract some profits in a very mechanical fashion. Of course the hedge funds and others that have access to top programmers do exactly that but with autobots that will always "click the mouse" faster than me any day and with no emotion.

But having looked at the swings in crude, I had an idea for a system and I just completed backtesting every trade that would have occurred in the past year. Without getting deep into the entry details, it basically looks for an overbought or oversold condition and enters on a pullback. The exit details are simple but I would love some feedback from anyone who has studied various exit scenarios to see what might work better. No stops or targets are used after entry (yes I know a black swan could be trouble so an emergency stop could be set). Instead, the exit is a market order. Assuming a long position, the exit would be when the first of 2 conditions occur, 1) the closing print of a subsequent bar is above the high of the entry bar, or 2) the closing print of a bar is below the entry price.

Win% is only 33% and the average trade makes ~5 ticks, or $50 profit. I was more optimistic before I saw the couple near $5000 drawdowns that occurred earlier in the past year and know results can be improved but I don't want to over optimize and have never had much luck with fixed stops/targets or with trailing stops on such systems.

Hypothetical results are below. Commissions are included but no slippage. Slippage of 0-1 tick per trade would reduce results by up to 20%.
Hypothetical Crude System Profit Curve

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

1 Bean Trade

2:20pm CST - Spent most of day backtesting crude further back on my new strat. But did make 1 losing bean trade (short in opening half hour!).

Net breakdown: ZS -$243
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:1
Net $P/L:-243
Wins:0
Losses:1
Win%:0
Avg$Win:0
Avg$Loss:-243

Monday, November 30, 2009

November Trading Summary

RESULTS FOR NOVEMBER
Contracts:123
Net $P/L:-2075
Wins:52
Losses:54
Win%:49
Avg$Win:67
Avg$Loss:-103

Pissed

2:15pm CST - Having regrets is not good but this one is going to stay with me for at least the rest of the day. I think I'm entitled...

After lots of homework and backtesting in the past few days, I decided I would start trading a new plan today with specific entry and exit rules and virtually no discretion involved. I say "virtually" because there will always be some scenario that I, and thus my rules, hadn't thought of. I have more backtesting to do before I feel 95% confident with this method (I would say 100% but anyone who says that isn't a realist, and I am). I'll elaborate more in future posts.

Anyways, today started bad with a $500 hit on crude. Then a nice $300 gain in beans, followed by the trade that made my head hurt (from kicking it repeatedly). Attached is the chart. I missed booking $900 thanks to not following my system. It was just laying there and I let somebody else have it. Back at it tomorrow....
11/30/09 Trades

Net breakdown: GCL -$229, ZS $307
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:3
Net $P/L:78
Wins:2
Losses:1
Win%:67
Avg$Win:297
Avg$Loss:-515

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Killed by Crude

2:40pm CST - OK, I didn't expect this to be easy and today was far from it. I was up $125 or so before crude killed me. I need to change my plan on GCL or maybe switch to QM (mini-crude) or just not trade it. Inventory report didn't help but mostly trying to short at resistance levels was futile. C'est la vie...

But on this day before Thanksgiving Day, I am thankful for the ability to participate in this profession, as hard and as challenging as it is. And making it possible are other things I'm thankful for, namely good health, a good past career in engineering, and no debt.

Net breakdown: 6E -$6, GCL -$612, ZS -$135, TF $21
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:28
Net $P/L:-733
Wins:13
Losses:14
Win%:48
Avg$Win:41
Avg$Loss:-90

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Euros, Beans, and Crude -Oh My!

2:55pm CST - It felt like Lions and Tigers and Bears after trading Dogs (ES) for so long. I've watched these markets in the recent past and traded them all years ago but to actually jump right in today had the adrenaline flowing at times. But I took it easy and scalped some gains which could have been much more had I held some of the winners longer. But I'm content with this start into expanding by repertoire...

11/24/09 Trades
Net breakdown: 6E -$81, GCL $189, ZS $94
RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:12
Net $P/L:202
Wins:8
Losses:4
Win%:67
Avg$Win:66
Avg$Loss:-81

Monday, November 23, 2009

More than ES

3:10pm CST - Volume wasn't as bad today as I thought it might be but but unless you caught the initial pop up, there was nothing but a slow grind down the rest of the day. I plan to continue to take it easy the rest of this holiday week.

Thanks in part to my fellow bloggers, I've been contemplating expanding my repertoire for some time as the ES has been so tough to trade lately. Currencies, grains, mini-Russell, crude, etc. all have lots of opportunity when the ES is just plain dead. It may be a mistake to be more than a one trick pony (ES) but I will find out anyways. Focusing on multiple markets does take more effort but more effort should result in more opportunity.

Today was 3 ES trades and 1 6E trade. Not sure how I will change my summary table below going forward but for now I'm just lumping all trades together.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:4
Net $P/L:87
Wins:3
Losses:1
Win%:75
Avg$Win:43
Avg$Loss:-40

Friday, November 20, 2009

Low Thrills

2:50pm CST - Nice break this week but had to attempt to climb back on the horse today. I nearly shorted yesterday a few minutes after the open at 1099 but "nearly" doesn't count in this business! Today was a low-thrills day that chopped me around but didn't do any damage.

Next week's action with Thanksgiving holiday is bound to be even worse than most of this week.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:8
Net $P/L:16
Wins:4
Losses:3
Win%:57
Avg$Win:40
Avg$Loss:-48

Friday, November 13, 2009

Friday the 13th

3:15pm CST - I escaped Friday the 13th bad luck with a final winner that got me back to breakeven on the day. The tape had so many dead zones today it was tough to stay alert.
11/13/09 ES Trades

I told myself mid-week if I didn't have a positive week, I would take some time off for at least part of next week. So that's what I'm going to do. Of course my idea of "time off" means I will still be pouring through charts, backtesting strats, etc. - I just won't be placing trades. Have a good weekend all.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:10
Net $P/L:-1
Wins:4
Losses:5
Win%:44
Avg$Win:90
Avg$Loss:-72

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Par day

3:50pm CST - Some winners, some losers. And for those that asked, I'll try to post more charts but no promises.
11/12/09 ES Trades

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:5
Net $P/L:-51
Wins:2
Losses:3
Win%:40
Avg$Win:122
Avg$Loss:-98

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Veterans Day

2:50pm CST - A 12 pt. ES range on Veterans Day isn't too bad but it got choppy after the first 1.5 hrs. Got 2 signals today which both stopped out.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:2
Net $P/L:-206
Wins:0
Losses:2
Win%:0
Avg$Win:0
Avg$Loss:-103

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Pre-holiday chop

3:10pm CST - Lots of chop today with only one winner. But I followed the plan of the day and took every trade signal. The 2 afternoon trades are shown on the chart, a loser and the winner:
11/10/09 Afternoon ES Trades

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:4
Net $P/L:-135
Wins:1
Losses:3
Win%:25
Avg$Win:147
Avg$Loss:-94

Monday, November 9, 2009

Up Monday

2:50pm CST - Nice slow motion move up today but with zero good pullbacks! At least I caught the early breakout.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:1
Net $P/L:147
Wins:1
Losses:0
Win%:100
Avg$Win:147
Avg$Loss:0

Friday, November 6, 2009

Quit while I'm behind

11:00am CST - My Friday luck continues. 3 of the losers stopped out to within a tick and reversed to go my way without me to hit my targets. Such is trading. The good news is that I stuck to my plan, did not revenge trade to try to get it back, and shut it down for the day.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:8
Net $P/L:-558
Wins:1
Losses:7
Win%:13
Avg$Win:34
Avg$Loss:-84

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Slow day

3:00pm CST - Slow day with many trades that went nowhere.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:6
Net $P/L:84
Wins:5
Losses:1
Win%:83
Avg$Win:32
Avg$Loss:-78

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

FOMC Day

3:00pm CST - 2 trades after the FOMC non-news. Coulda, woulda, shoulda held the second one into the close for 10+ points...

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:2
Net $P/L:169
Wins:2
Losses:0
Win%:100
Avg$Win:85
Avg$Loss:0

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Donkey

No trades today....

Thanks to those who have commented or emailed with offers of help. I appreciate it but the main issue I've had lately cannot be solved by anyone but myself. It is in my head. Now a secondary issue may be lack of a winning edge. Anyone wanting to help there, just email me your strategy with all the specific entry/exit details! :)

This landed in my inbox today and seemed appropriate:
----------------------------------------------------------
One day a farmer's donkey fell down into a well. The animal cried piteously for hours as the farmer tried to figure out what to do. Finally, he decided the animal was old, and the well needed to be covered up anyway; it just wasn't worth it to retrieve the donkey.



He invited all his neighbors to come over and help him. They all grabbed a shovel and began to shovel dirt into the well. At first, the donkey realized what was happening and cried horribly. Then, to everyone's amazement he quieted down.

A few shovel loads later, the farmer finally looked down the well. He was astonished at what he saw. With each shovel of dirt that hit his back, the donkey was doing something amazing. He would shake it off and take a step up.


As the farmer's neighbors continued to shovel dirt on top of the animal, he would shake it off and take a step up. Pretty soon, everyone was amazed as the donkey stepped up over the edge of the well and happily trotted off!

MORAL: Life is going to shovel dirt on you, all kinds of dirt. The trick to getting out of the well is to shake it off and take a step up. Each of our troubles is a steppingstone. We can get out of the deepest wells just by not stopping and never giving up! Shake it off and take a step up.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Pathetic

3:15pm CST - Pathetic describes my trading to open this month. Obviously I need to make some changes (how many times have I said that before?). Stay tuned...

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:30
Net $P/L:-1178
Wins:6
Losses:10
Win%:38
Avg$Win:49
Avg$Loss:-147

Friday, October 30, 2009

ES October Trading Summary

RESULTS FOR OCTOBER
Contracts:400
Net $P/L:-4087
Wins:75
Losses:70
Win%:52
Avg$Win:100
Avg$Loss:-165

Poor End

2:45pm CDT - I executed my plan perfectly today taking every signal until I hit my loss limit at 1:30. The ES swings were crazy today and volatility was back. Too bad my plan was not in sync with the swings today. A fitting end to the month. November will be better.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:8
Net $P/L:-996
Wins:1
Losses:3
Win%:25
Avg$Win:194
Avg$Loss:-397

Thursday, October 29, 2009

No Sim

2:50pm CDT - 1 long and 1 short today - much easier than yesterday's hectic trading pace where I made 24 trades with zero results! Some of my readers have to wonder WTF am I doing? Yes it's very true lately that I've been trying different things and vary strategy as often as daily. The great thing about trading for yourself is that you can do anything you want. Some have said I should be sim trading but that is not for me. I have tried it in the past but it does nothing to help improve my mindset which is and always will be my biggest nemesis.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:4
Net $P/L:164
Wins:2
Losses:0
Win%:100
Avg$Win:82
Avg$Loss:0

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Slow Speed Selloff

3:15pm CDT - Down $250 after first 2 trades on the day and churned the rest of the day. Back at it tomorrow!

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:49
Net $P/L:-190
Wins:11
Losses:13
Win%:46
Avg$Win:85
Avg$Loss:-86

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

More Broker Hell

3:10pm CDT - Open ECry had no charts/quotes/DOM for awhile this morning (more than an hour). I tried my best to trade off my eSignal charts alone but it was not a good idea in hindsight. It was a tough market to trade even without broker issues to make matter worst. I'm not sure if/when they will ever get their act together but for the near future, I recommend everyone stay away from OEC until they have at least 3 months of solid performance.

I was down nearly double the end tally after the opening 2 hours. Fought back half of it the rest of the day.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:25
Net $P/L:-490
Wins:6
Losses:8
Win%:43
Avg$Win:95
Avg$Loss:-132

Monday, October 26, 2009

Monday Moves

3:00pm CDT - A couple nice moves today in the market made for some good trades. I was pretty good at sitting on my hands in the chop.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:5
Net $P/L:300
Wins:4
Losses:1
Win%:80
Avg$Win:88
Avg$Loss:-53

Friday, October 23, 2009

Friday

3:10pm CDT - Some good trades early on that I should have held longer, then gave all the gains back in the midday chop, then got it back on the short side after lunch. All in all, an okay week for a change. Look forward to the weekend break.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:10
Net $P/L:199
Wins:6
Losses:4
Win%:60
Avg$Win:74
Avg$Loss:-62

Thursday, October 22, 2009

6 in a row

3:00pm CDT - A good morning with 1-2 point scalps. Missed the afternoon spike. Morning winners on chart below (6 in a row!) - but then I had 5 losers/par trades later, not shown. Ready for Friday...
ES 10/22/09 morning winners

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:11
Net $P/L:221
Wins:6
Losses:5
Win%:55
Avg$Win:56
Avg$Loss:-23

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Free Fall

3:15pm CDT - Up $160 at one point, down $160 later on, then back to breakeven on the day. So it goes - a day with a big up move with no retraces to get in, followed by chop, and ending with a huge down move with no decent retraces to get in.

I did scalp a point long a couple minutes after the close on the bounce of that super fast 4 pt. down push that took out all the stops!

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:16
Net $P/L:46
Wins:6
Losses:8
Win%:43
Avg$Win:83
Avg$Loss:-56

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Down Tues.

3:15pm CDT - Some bad entries and overtrading were mostly to blame today for a small down day. I'm feeling out a new methodology so some errors are to be expected. But tomorrow is another day...

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:14
Net $P/L:-111
Wins:8
Losses:5
Win%:62
Avg$Win:44
vg$Loss:-93

Monday, October 19, 2009

Outside Day

2:15pm CDT - 1 nice trade for a few points and a couple trades for a couple ticks that I got out of too early and could have had a point or two on each if held. Always working on that little blemish in my trading psyche, holding winners longer. The work never ends...

On the daily chart, ES logs an outside day (HH and LL than Friday) so I'm quitting a little early to get outside on this first day above 60 deg. in nearly 3 weeks here in Chicago.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:3
Net $P/L:204
Wins:3
Losses:0
Win%:100
Avg$Win:68
Avg$Loss:0

Friday, October 16, 2009

Friday

3:00pm CDT - Just one short trade from this morning. Still taking it easy.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:1
Net $P/L:109
Wins:1
Losses:0
Win%:100
Avg$Win:109
Avg$Loss:0

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Comments

2:45pm CDT - Thanks all who follow along and for most of the comments in Tuesday's post. I read everything that comes in and take it all in, even if it may be blunt unsolicited advice at times. So far I've only had to delete one comment a week or so ago from an Anonymous commenter that called another commenter an idiot. But I know 99% of my followers are mature adults so will likely keep the comment section of this blog unmoderated but reserve the right to change that if I ever need to.

Yesterday I took the day off and will tread lightly going forward for now. One ES trade today shows I am still out of sync, but only by a tick! I was stopped out on a long at the low tick of the regular session at 82.75.
10/15/09 ES Trades

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:1
Net $P/L:-103
Wins:0
Losses:1
Win%:0
Avg$Win:0
Avg$Loss:-103

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Equity Curve

3:20pm CDT - OK, this month is officially depressing so far. Today I traded TF for a change after reviewing lots of charts last night. My strategy involved entering after a small retrace in trend direction and exiting after 4 or so ticks. Rinse and repeat. Of course nothing goes as smoothly as backtesting but I knew trading 1-lots I would not get me in much trouble. So I trade 1 lots, then upped it to 2 lots after going negative, then increased to 4 and finally 5 lots before hitting my $circuit breaker for the day just after 11am. And so ends another negative day!

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:25
Net $P/L:-1362
Wins:1
Losses:6
Win%:14
Avg$Win:186
Avg$Loss:-258

I'm great at following my trading rules and can trade like a robot anytime with zero emotion if I have an ironclad set of rules covering any and all conditions that could arise in my entry/exit and position size. But my "problem" is that something typically comes up that makes me justify tweaking the rules. And so the trouble begins. Part of the reason recently I think is the dwindling year and the desire to be positive by end of 2009 - not a good reason...

Sometime, hopefully sooner rather than later, things will click for me again and I'll be clicking the mouse according to plan, a winning plan. Until then, my goal must be to limit the damage.

Here's my equity curve since start of this blog nearly 6 months ago. Not very pretty but it's reality.
Equity Curve MBAGearhead

Monday, October 12, 2009

FCM Financial Data

No trades today - should have slept in! Happy Columbus Day!

On another note, this is a good site to look at now and then to see how your FCM is doing. For better or worse, my broker has more than doubled in size (customer segregated funds) in less than 2 years.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Rainy Friday

2:50pm CDT - Dead market most of day. Glad it's the weekend!

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:10
Net $P/L:-89
Wins:1
Losses:1
Win%:50
Avg$Win:237
Avg$Loss:-326

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Slow Day

3:00pm CDT - I thought I had plenty of patience but do I have the patience for 30 min. charts? Having doubts already. I'll have to discuss this with my inner boss and figure out a game plan soon.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:2
Net $P/L:119
Wins:2
Losses:0
Win%:100
Avg$Win:59
Avg$Loss:0

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Choppy

3:00pm CDT - First trade of day long was up 3 pts. before going back to breakeven to stop me out. Other 2 trades were about the worst entries possible.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:3
Net $P/L:-283
Wins:1
Losses:2
Win%:33
Avg$Win:9
Avg$Loss:-146

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Going Long

1:45pm CDT - I'm shaking things up and going long - Longer timeframe charts that is! No more trading off 3-tick range charts, 1 min. charts and 5 min. charts. 30 min. will be my new timeframe and primary trading chart. I know this won't solve my personal demons and issues but it can't hurt. The main benefits I see is that it will limit overtrading as I do not intend to do much trading intrabar and it will help me see the bigger picture and hold winners longer. The main negative is that stops need to be bigger. We shall see... 1 short trade this afternoon:

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:1
Net $P/L:134
Wins:1
Losses:0
Win%:100
Avg$Win:134
Avg$Loss:0

Monday, October 5, 2009

Down Day Repeated

2:45pm CDT - Another losing day. I may take some time off this week in case you don't see my daily post. Then again, I may not...

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:24
Net $P/L:-1100
Wins:3
Losses:5
Win%:38
Avg$Win:137
Avg$Loss:-302

Friday, October 2, 2009

Rio

3:10pm CDT - I traded 10 lots all day and didn't do so well. I was actually even until the last trade of day which I stopped out for -9 ticks. Back to 1 or 2 lots Monday.

Congrats to Rio who beat my hometown Chicago for the 2016 Olympics!

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:180
Net $P/L:-1168
Wins:9
Losses:7
Win%:56
Avg$Win:207
Avg$Loss:-433

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Down Market, Up Day

2:50pm CDT - Got shaken out of one short I put on just after the 9am CDT news release that would have gone on to be a winner. But the other shorts today worked great. 21 more days like today would make for a nice month.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:8
Net $P/L:304
Wins:3
Losses:1
Win%:75
Avg$Win:120
Avg$Loss:-55

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

ES September Trading Summary

RESULTS FOR SEPTEMBER
Contracts:443
Net $P/L:1611
Wins:97
Losses:49
Win%:66
Avg$Win:107
Avg$Loss:-179

Tick Swings

3:00pm CDT - The TICK swings were wild today. We went from -1347 to +1358 to -1234 to +1015 to -1127 to +1063. I guess it was end of quarter gyrations? It did make for some nice tradeable moves which I scalped for an okay day to wrap up the month.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:16
Net $P/L:358
Wins:4
Losses:0
Win%:100
Avg$Win:90
Avg$Loss:-0

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Don't Trade the News

3:00pm CDT - After 1 winner, I proceeded to lose 6 in a row all in the first 1.5 hrs. of the market open! I was not in focus and felt the urge to revenge trade so stopped for day. The biggest mistake was attempting to trade the morning consumer confidence number. I was long and added to my position once (within my rules) but stopped out just above the low a couple minutes later.

I guess I really know how to "celebrate" the anniversary of the 777 pt. drop in the Dow a year ago today.... :(

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:33
Net $P/L:-1861
Wins:1
Losses:6
Win%:14
Avg$Win:70
Avg$Loss:-322

Monday, September 28, 2009

Yom Kippur

3:00pm CDT - Nice move up today but didn't find many retraces to get some decent entries. And the sluggish Yom Kippur volume didn't help.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:4
Net $P/L:164
Wins:2
Losses:0
Win%:100
Avg$Win:82
Avg$Loss:-0

Friday, September 25, 2009

Overtrading

3:00pm CDT - Not happy again with my trading - this seems to be a recurring theme this week. Today I certainly overtraded. I need to revisit some charts this weekend.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:58
Net $P/L:249
Wins:11
Losses:6
Win%:65
Avg$Win:59
Avg$Loss:-67

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Thurs.

3:00pm CDT - Not happy with my trading today but ended up okay.

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:28
Net $P/L:277
Wins:4
Losses:3
Win%:57
Avg$Win:278
Avg$Loss:-278

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Ben Day

3:10pm CDT - Changed things up slightly since yesterday to get my grove back. Good day taking nibbles. Here's the post FOMC trades (should have held that last one... DOH!):
9/23/09 Afternoon ES Trades

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:16
Net $P/L:333
Wins:7
Losses:1
Win%:88
Avg$Win:48
Avg$Loss:-6

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Drawdown Day

3:10pm CDT - Another very choppy day which I did not escape from this time! Overtraded given the tight range all day and may have to figure out a filter for days like the past couple. ...or just sit on my hands. Hope FOMC tomorrow adds some life to these charts!

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:38
Net $P/L:-999
Wins:4
Losses:4
Win%:50
Avg$Win:178
Avg$Loss:-428

Monday, September 21, 2009

Chop

3:10pm CDT - Very choppy day which had me red early on and stayed there all day. The 2 losing trades were first, followed by the 3 winners. Not enough to get me green but happy to escape the wrath of the chop mostly unscathed!

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:36
Net $P/L:-94
Wins:3
Losses:2
Win%:60
Avg$Win:246
Avg$Loss:-416

Friday, September 18, 2009

Rosh Hashanah

3:15pm CDT - Slow, low volume Rosh Hashanah today with a few quadruple-witching whipsaws. I was doing great until I made 3 small losing trades at end of day within 8 minutes of the closing bell. Took $85 off my high-of-day. What was I thinking trading at that time? TGIF!

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:20
Net $P/L:373
Wins:5
Losses:4
Win%:56
Avg$Win:94
Avg$Loss:-24

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Jerky

3:10pm CDT - Tough day. Lots of fake outs today which kept me scrambling and bouncing from red to black and back again. On the chart are 5 trades from the morning which had me a smidge red. Recovered in the afternoon but the jerky action had me taking gains off quickly. ...too quickly in most cases. I expect this jerkiness is partly related to expiration day which is tomorrow.
9/17/09 morning trades

RESULTS FOR DAY
Contracts:28
Net $P/L:152
Wins:7
Losses:2
Win%:78
Avg$Win:125
Avg$Loss:-361