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Transitioning from paper-trading to real money trading Tomorrow (CL)

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Transitioning from paper-trading to real money trading Tomorrow (CL)

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  #1 (permalink)
Potomac, MD
Experience: Intermediate
Platform: ToS, NT
Broker: TD Ameritrade, IB
Trading: QM/CL
reno57540's Avatar
Posts: 161 since Oct 2012
Thanks: 120 given, 213 received


I have been paper-daytrading NQ and CL rather successfully for the last 3 months and plan to start using real money tomorrow.

While trading in SIM mode was a great way to learn the trading platform and test my set-up. I feel that sometimes there are trades i would not take with real money. I am not sure if that is a common situation but while i used to take my set-up and rules very seriously at first i am now more and more reckless and believe the reason is that since no real cash is at risk, and my set-up has not changed since the beginning, i tend to trade out of boredom.

Anyways i would be interested to hear other people's feelings and experience while transitioning to the real trading world.

My plan is to only trade CL, 1 contract at a time with a 10-15(max) tick stop loss. For that i am using a 300 tick charts as my set-up chart and 900 tock chart for confirmation. My basic setup consists of using the 50 MA to find out the trend and use stochastics/Macds and support/resistance levels on a pull back to enter in the direction of the trend or against if the trend is extended and there is a divergence on the price and the indicator.

can't wait for tomorrow

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  #3 (permalink)
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As a beginner, I would definitely advise against trading CL. Or any futures really.

Please watch:
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It breaks it all down and you can make an informed decision.

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  #4 (permalink)
Dartmouth NS
Experience: Intermediate
Platform: MC, MC.Net, NT, TWS
Broker: IB / IQFeed / Kids
Trading: Forex, stocks
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Good luck! It is a different kettle of fish (trading cash the right way). I'm in the crowd that started out trading real money and had to lose my shirt before able to take paper trading seriously. I resumed trading cash some months ago but switch back to paper fairly often to forward test new ideas or when just in the mood to deviate from the trading plan (hate to admit to that).

I find I'm more cautious trading cash (more inclined to stick to the plan) but not hesitant to place orders. What helped me focus on trading rather than the fact it's cash was determining a lot size I was comfortable with and dividing it in half.

Once the thrill wore off I found it was necessary to become more cerebral about trading; in other words had to work to keep the positives front of mind (e.g., reading about the art of trading, trying to actively embrace the virtues of confidence and self-discipline) or the novelty turns into boredom. In my case boredom (not quite the same thing as impatience) may be the greatest danger to profitability and greatest impediment to improving as a trader.

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  #5 (permalink)
Potomac, MD
Experience: Intermediate
Platform: ToS, NT
Broker: TD Ameritrade, IB
Trading: QM/CL
reno57540's Avatar
Posts: 161 since Oct 2012
Thanks: 120 given, 213 received


Thank you Mike for your honest answer. After reading your post and doing more research on the forum i got worried about going live with CL and decided to postpone for now. However, here i am again today, paper trading CL without much problems. Even though i over traded again out of boredom, i am still up for the day, even after commissions. I am using NT with an ATM strategy that places a stop mkt order as soon as the order is filled, so i am not too concerned about large individual losses, and of course I am always flat on Wednesdays at 10:30am

I truly believe that using fake money and repeating the same actions over and over is part of what is causing me to over-trade. I personally feel like i am ready to try with real money and that, like bnichols, i will be more cautious and follow my plan even better

I am not a true beginner as I have been live trading stocks (actively) for a couple of years now, and i also gave other, more conservative futures instruments a try (NQ) but they did not fit my style as i found they did not move fast enough and i would often find myself bailing out before the move. I also felt like there were many more stop runs in NQ as there are in CL.

I know that when live trading CL slippage can be a problem but i am using stop limit orders with a 1 tick max slippage so i shouldn't suffer from bad entries (when i get in ).

Anyways thanks again for the feedback.

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Last Updated on October 25, 2012

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