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My path of trading full-time


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My path of trading full-time

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  #1 (permalink)
LJYY
Singapore
 
 
Posts: 14 since Jun 2011
Thanks: 6 given, 8 received

Hi everyone, a brief self intro, I have quited my job to attempt to be a trader full-time although I do not profess to be more than a beginner in trading. Its has been 1 month but my progress has not been good, hence I am starting a journal to force myself to become more disciplined in recording my trading results and review ways of improving upon my results.

I am living in a different time zone which makes it hard for me to monitor the market overnight, my time zone is around 12 hours apart from US time zone hence, although I try to keep myself awake at night, I normally will give up at around 2, 3 am.

Trading methodology
I am trading the Russell mini index mainly at the moment, a brief description of my trading method is that it enters orders when the short term trend is aligned with the longer term trend. I trail my stop with a profit target of 3X my initial risk. Using MA band filter and basic price action to filter out whipsaws.

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  #3 (permalink)
LJYY
Singapore
 
 
Posts: 14 since Jun 2011
Thanks: 6 given, 8 received


I will be posting my results on a daily basis and note down some of my thoughts.

I will compile an overall review on a weekly basis after I have more samples to look at areas of improvement.

Results for my first day :
1) B +1.2
2) B +0.1
3) B -1.2


Thoughts :
The market was plunging down due to the US debt limit but as the longer term trend which I used a MA has not given an indication, hence, I did not trade on the downside. I wonder if I should make exceptions to my rules for certain situations where the market is trending counter to the longer term trend indicator but there is a basis for the market to be doing so, is sticking to the rules deemed as too rigid in this situation?

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  #4 (permalink)
 RM99 
Austin, TX
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: TradeStation
Trading: Futures
 
Posts: 882 since Mar 2011
Thanks: 124 given, 701 received


LJYY View Post
I will be posting my results on a daily basis and note down some of my thoughts.

I will compile an overall review on a weekly basis after I have more samples to look at areas of improvement.

Results for my first day :
1) B +1.2
2) B +0.1
3) B -1.2


Thoughts :
The market was plunging down due to the US debt limit but as the longer term trend which I used a MA has not given an indication, hence, I did not trade on the downside. I wonder if I should make exceptions to my rules for certain situations where the market is trending counter to the longer term trend indicator but there is a basis for the market to be doing so, is sticking to the rules deemed as too rigid in this situation?

As you progress, your "rules" will develop for a reason. Trading with the grain is usually a good rule as long as you can adequately determine the trend.

As you discovered, trend is a relative term and depends on the time frame.

This is part of the trial and error and experience that comes with knowledge of a particular market or instrument. After awhile, you'll settle in on what time frame to calculate your moving averages to establish trend.

I would also recommend that you expand your definition of trend to include neutral or sideways, as a rigid trend filtering system falters when there's a turn or a pivot. Without the additional category of "flat" or neutral, you find yourself either two options, up or down and as you saw today, the market was choppy to negative trending...whether that's the beginning of a new downward trend or not is a matter of opinion and debate.

I would say that you can also adjust your "rule" to stay clear of days when fundamental news can throw things for a loop. Add the bloomberg news calendar to your home page (or whichever you choose) and that can help to identify things like FOMC, Jobs, Unemployment, Consumer Confidence, etc, etc.

Fundamentals always get a vote and even the most prolific edge with respect to technicals gets trumped when there's significant fundamental news that's scheduled AND unscheduled (like the Gulf Oil spill, Japanese Earthquake, Greek Debt vote, etc, etc. etc.)

"A dumb man never learns. A smart man learns from his own failure and success. But a wise man learns from the failure and success of others."
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  #5 (permalink)
 RM99 
Austin, TX
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: TradeStation
Trading: Futures
 
Posts: 882 since Mar 2011
Thanks: 124 given, 701 received

To expand a little further....

Know that the longer your MA timeframe, the harder and more extensive a countertrend will have to be in order to change the trend.

It's best to use a multi-time frame analysis in order to guage when you should enter trades.

A short and long or a short, medium and long time frame analysis will help you to enter when all the rowers are pulling in the same direction.

Secondly, the larger the time frame, the larger your loss and profit values will be. Certain instruments have more volitility and whipsaw than others.....you'll just have to guage for yourself what "appropriate" level of risk/reward you're willing to take. I'm not familiar with TF or Russel.

A general rule of thumb is that an approach that features a medium to lower win%, with a higher average profit than average loss, is usually a sign of success.

That's not to say that you can't be successful chasing small trades that win small profits often (but have high stop loss)....but if that's the case, you'd better be sure you can maintain a high win rate.

Try multi-time framing first, and then settle in on what the average or appropriate level of risk might be for the typical swings and trends. Then you'll start to develop an expectancy for how often you can win 10 ticks before losing 8. So forth and so on.

As far as the time of the market opens, well, the only thing I can tell you is if you're going to be a full time trader, you have to put in the work. Part of the reason MOST people think making money at trading is a dream is that they don't have the time or opportunity to focus on it FULL TIME. If you're a full time trader, and you insist on living in SE Asia, there's no excuse for not being up and working when the market you're trading is open for business. (unless you're going to try to trade off hours to make sanity of your work/sleep schedule).

"A dumb man never learns. A smart man learns from his own failure and success. But a wise man learns from the failure and success of others."
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  #6 (permalink)
 Big Mike 
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Congrats on creating your journal, I look forward to more.

Mike

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  #7 (permalink)
LJYY
Singapore
 
 
Posts: 14 since Jun 2011
Thanks: 6 given, 8 received

Results for 2nd day:
1) S -0.4
2) S -1.8
3) S 7.2



Thoughts:

After the first day of plunging down, my longer term MA has started to move down, hence trades were only taken on the short side.

I have to say that the second trade which was a loss was not a good trade as I did not follow my own rules. My risk management rules state that I will not risk more than 2.5 on any single trade and if the predetermined stop loss is more than that, I have to pass on the trade. In this case, I had chosen another place to put the stop loss instead of skipping on the trade. This seems to be a problem with me, maybe because sometimes I had spend 6-7 hours waiting for a valid setup, hence when a setup comes, I am often reluctant to let it go just because of risk management rules. I have to constantly remind myself that there will always be another trade and not risk too much on a single trade. To be able to make money from trading, I have to be more disciplined than anyone else.

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  #8 (permalink)
LJYY
Singapore
 
 
Posts: 14 since Jun 2011
Thanks: 6 given, 8 received

Results:

1) S -2.3


Thoughts:

There was an earlier trade which I passed on as the risk was greater than my maximum loss, so hopefully, the previous time I did that will be the last time I ever do that again. Market recovered later in the day hence stopping me out.

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  #9 (permalink)
LJYY
Singapore
 
 
Posts: 14 since Jun 2011
Thanks: 6 given, 8 received

Trades: No trades were taken.

Thoughts: Many of the setups during the trading session exceeded my maximum of risk of 25 ticks and I decided to pass on the trades. I think that my maximum risk might be too small to trade effectively, hence I have increased the maximum risk per trade to 30 ticks. Since the maximum stop loss is to protect the account, it has to strike a balance between the account size and the opportunities available in the market. 30 ticks per trade is still considered acceptable risks to my account.

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  #10 (permalink)
 Jones 
Stuttgart, Germany
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: Ninja Trader
Broker: IB TWS / Kinetick
Trading: ES
 
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Posts: 32 since May 2011
Thanks: 17 given, 13 received


hi,

thank you for shareing your trading day with others. it would be interesting to see when you enter a trade, what are the rules and definitions of the setup you take,.... .
If you do not have the possibility to take pictures from your trading software you can install FastStone Capture: FastStone Capture (Letzte Freeware Version) - Download - CHIP Online (last freeware version) itīs intuitive in handling and not a big installment.
i want to trade for a living to. i once did so about 12 years ago, also successful. but nowadays it is very hard for me to find the appropriate method to trade since my capital is very low and not much room to work with. what helped me very much to get higher profitability setups is al brooks book, reading price charts bar by bar. might you want to take a look at it. hope it helps...

cheers
jones

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  #11 (permalink)
 jagui 
Italy - Roma
 
Experience: Intermediate
Platform: Ninja + proprietary
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Posts: 200 since Jul 2010
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Did you look at the NIFTY50 futures traded at the NSE of India?
It looks like a very tradable instrument, and should be better suited for your timezone.

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  #12 (permalink)
 bluemele 
Honolulu, Hawaii
 
Experience: Intermediate
Platform: NinjaTrader
Broker: ATC/TT, AMP/Zen-Fire, AMP/CQG
Trading: TF
 
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Posts: 2,547 since Jun 2010
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My advice is to keep some other 'streams of income' coming in during your transition to trading. Something that doesn't require a ton of mental or emotional drainage, but something that will pay your utilities, some food etc..

I would not advise what I did, because I basically cut off most of my business and went hard core. It worked out for a while, then when things got tough, I faltered and it probably slowed down my curve.

As a friend puts it, in today's economy, having a decent paying job "is an asset" much like a house, investment etc..

Good luck on your journey and I wish you the best of success.

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  #13 (permalink)
 GaryD 
Orlando, Florida
 
Experience: None
Platform: shoes
Trading: happy
 
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Posts: 6,462 since May 2011


LJYY View Post
Hi everyone, a brief self intro, I have quited my job to attempt to be a trader full-time although I do not profess to be more than a beginner in trading. Its has been 1 month but my progress has not been good, hence I am starting a journal to force myself to become more disciplined in recording my trading results and review ways of improving upon my results.

I am living in a different time zone which makes it hard for me to monitor the market overnight, my time zone is around 12 hours apart from US time zone hence, although I try to keep myself awake at night, I normally will give up at around 2, 3 am.

Trading methodology
I am trading the Russell mini index mainly at the moment, a brief description of my trading method is that it enters orders when the short term trend is aligned with the longer term trend. I trail my stop with a profit target of 3X my initial risk. Using MA band filter and basic price action to filter out whipsaws.



Trading full-time is a great experience for learning what the markets do. Screen time is possibly the most important part of your education.

The fact that your profit target is 3x your stop is good mathematically. How do you choose where you will place the stop and profit target?

I discovered that I make much better trade decisions when I am not thinking about having to trade or making a certain amount of money. Relying on trading as your sole source of income can make some people feel pressured to make a profit on a regular basis.

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  #14 (permalink)
LJYY
Singapore
 
 
Posts: 14 since Jun 2011
Thanks: 6 given, 8 received

Trades: No trades taken.

Thoughts: Despite having increased my max risk per trade to 30 ticks earlier, no trades were taken as the high volatility in the market resulted in most trades having to risk beyond my max loss. Although it is hard to watch prices going down and down when my indicators tell me to sell, I have to watch the risk I am taking with each trade. If I am trading multiple lots, I can halve my position size to take on higher tick risks, but since I m only trading single lot until my account grows, I have to pass on these opportunities.

Thanks to those who offer me words of encouragement. At the moment, I am doing some part-time work during the weekends to put food on the table. As for my setups, its quite similiar to the multi-time frame trend trading thread. Nothing that is new, what is on my charts is only MAs.

I am currently working on developing another strategy that's mean reversion to be used in conjunction with my trend following strategy, will need to look through the charts and finetune the rules before implementing it. If two strategies not not correlated, trading multiple strategies will reduce volatility of earnings and allow more consistent growth in my account.

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  #15 (permalink)
 Gabriyele 
LA/CAlifornia REpublic
 
Experience: None
Platform: NT7
Trading: Chello
 
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Posts: 3,025 since May 2011

so don't give up LJYY, ever!
I'm absolutely certain that you are on your way to become
the best possible trader that you can imagine yourself to be!!!



Excellent work on your thread LJYY, keep it up my friend!!



P.S.
give RJAY's ChannelTrend bars a try,OR his RenkoHybrid bars,...... if you'd like

It certainly makes trading a whole lot easier!!

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  #16 (permalink)
LJYY
Singapore
 
 
Posts: 14 since Jun 2011
Thanks: 6 given, 8 received

Trades:

1) S +3.1
2) S -2.8
3) S -3.2
4) S +8.4

Thoughts:

Overall trend was down but I had 2 losing trades out of 4. This might indicate that my stop loss and point where I enter trades might not be optimum, but before changing my strategy, I will need to have more trades before I consider revising.

I also noticed that there tend to be huge trend reversals at 8.30 and 9.30 which tend to hit my stops. This has happened several times before. Closing all open positions before then and not opening new positions just before those times might help to improve my results. To observe further.

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  #17 (permalink)
 RM99 
Austin, TX
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: TradeStation
Trading: Futures
 
Posts: 882 since Mar 2011
Thanks: 124 given, 701 received


LJYY View Post
Trades:

1) S +3.1
2) S -2.8
3) S -3.2
4) S +8.4

Thoughts:

Overall trend was down but I had 2 losing trades out of 4. This might indicate that my stop loss and point where I enter trades might not be optimum, but before changing my strategy, I will need to have more trades before I consider revising.

I also noticed that there tend to be huge trend reversals at 8.30 and 9.30 which tend to hit my stops. This has happened several times before. Closing all open positions before then and not opening new positions just before those times might help to improve my results. To observe further.

Time based assessments can be spurious. If you're going to avoid those times, avoid them because the volume or the volitility isn't to your liking. Spotting trend reversals at a particular time each day can be a dangerous thing, because the next logical progression is for you to say "here it is again, I think I'll get in on this trend reversal."

Assessing the daily volume/price action patterns for each day based on what time of the day it is, that's fine. But be careful about noticing what appear to be daily, SPECIFIC price actions.

"A dumb man never learns. A smart man learns from his own failure and success. But a wise man learns from the failure and success of others."
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  #18 (permalink)
LJYY
Singapore
 
 
Posts: 14 since Jun 2011
Thanks: 6 given, 8 received

Trades :
1) S -0.0

Thoughts :

Prices had moved down to my take profits target, missing it by a few ticks and prices started to reverse. There was an announcement at 2 pm when the liquidity in the market dried up. Prices hovered just before my take profits for a few bars and then after the announcement. Prices reversed up and hit my stop loss before going in the other direction to reach my take profit. As what RM99 had advised, fundamentals can negate any edge that technical analysis can. Going forward, I will take note of any major announcements and close off my positions before then.

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  #19 (permalink)
LJYY
Singapore
 
 
Posts: 14 since Jun 2011
Thanks: 6 given, 8 received

Trades: No trades were taken.

Thoughts:

My longer term MA had turned up so I was looking to go long but prices keep moving down coupled with the high volatility resulted in no trades taken yesterday. As mentioned previously, I am working on a mean reversion strategy at the moment, but have not been able to work out something that's workable. I came across the Perry's method in the forum and is currently forward testing it. Since its much shorter term, it might be able to smooth out my results and allow me to trade smaller trends which my method will normally pass on.

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  #20 (permalink)
LJYY
Singapore
 
 
Posts: 14 since Jun 2011
Thanks: 6 given, 8 received

Trades:

1) S -1.9
2) S -3.1

Thoughts:

My long term MA were in selling mode so I was looking to sell. Although my losses are smaller than my wins, I find that I often end up taking a full loss and I did not get to trail my stop along to minimise them. This could mean that my entry points can be improved upon or my way of trailing the stop loss can be further improved. I will review the trades that I have and come up with some possible methods to improve on them. As I have been looking at Perry's system, I was wonder if it is possible to use range bars to help in my entry points too.

I have forward tested Perry's system on the ES for the past two days, the results are good, will definitely help to reduce volatility in my earnings, but will need to look at it for a longer period of time before I start trading it.

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  #21 (permalink)
LJYY
Singapore
 
 
Posts: 14 since Jun 2011
Thanks: 6 given, 8 received

Trades:

1) B +4.5


Thoughts:

I have reviewed all my trades from earlier on, although I think the sample size is not large enough yet for me to draw conclusions on making changes, I noticed that out of 15 trades, I had 6 winners. Some observations that I have:

1) Out of the 6 winners, after the entry bar, the maximum retracement against my entry point was only 10 ticks.
2) After prices moved in my favor by my 1R, moving stop to breakeven has no impact on the 6 winners.

Current sample size is still small and I will continue to collect data on the above before I implement any changes.

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  #22 (permalink)
LJYY
Singapore
 
 
Posts: 14 since Jun 2011
Thanks: 6 given, 8 received

Trades:

1) S -3.2


Thoughts:

After trading my method for a while, abielt a short while, I have some feelings about my current system of trading. It trades really infrequently and in fact, although its supposed to be a trend following system, most of the time, I am left out of large moves made while trying to wait for a point to get on. Also, my initial stop losses are frequently hit for the full 1R loss which makes me keep wondering if there's a better entry point to enter the trend.

I will be stopping trading for the rest of the week to backtest some modifications on my trading system. In particular, after looking at Perry's trading system using range bars, I was thinking of incorporating ranges bars in my trading system. After making the modifications, I want to achieve the following:

1) The system should be able to get on major trends early, as opposed to now when my system miss the bulk of the movement.

2) To choose a point of entry where the momentum of prices are moving fast in the direction such that if I am entering using a two lot system, I can take one lot off at a profit after a few ticks and move the second lot to breakeven and hang on for the rest of the ride.

3) To step up on the frequency of trading. Personally, I feel that this is a debatable point, but my way of thinking is that if trading is a probability game then if the system itself has more samples everyday, it increases the likelihood that we will end up in net profit most days.

I feel that there is a fine line between trying to make a great system and chasing the holy grail and I definitely hope that my expectations are not so unreasonable as to be construed as chasing the holy grail.

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  #23 (permalink)
LJYY
Singapore
 
 
Posts: 14 since Jun 2011
Thanks: 6 given, 8 received

Hi pple, I havn't been posting in my journal for a long time. Previously, I took some time off to develop and backtest a system. I decided to switch to trading Singapore market as the timing is more in line with my hours. After some testing, I managed to come up with a strategy that has a relatively smooth equity curve and I implemented it for 2 months letting it auto-trade, but the results were dismal. I investigated and realised that there was too much slippage entering with market orders at the start of a bar and now have to go back to the drawing board, but I feel lost and seriously worry that I am putting my efforts in the wrong direction...I often hear so many conflicting advice from everyone that I really don't know what to put my effort towards...should I continue backtesting and fitting various indicators on the charts? Should I try to trade discretionary? But trading discretionary has always posed a question to me, I am not sure how am I supposed to be exercising my discretion, shouldn't my decisions be based on either a) price or b) indicators or c) volume, all of which can be backtested, what am I trying to develop if I try to trade discretionary. I did speak to a guy who is quite profitable trading futures on SGX, but when I try to ask him in detail why did he enter or exit into trades, he says that it is mostly by feel. Am I trying to develop some kind of feeling for trading? Should that be the goal?

Some people say that simple systems do not work...and some people say that try to keep it simple, don't over complicate matters...Sorry for the rambling, I feel that I am so lost, I don't even know what question to ask anymore.

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  #24 (permalink)
 JustinIsHere 
Montreal, Canada
 
Experience: Beginner
Platform: NinjaTrader, Multicharts
Trading: ES
 
Posts: 114 since Dec 2011
Thanks: 55 given, 126 received


Gerald Loeb
Whenever You Find The Key To The Market, They Change The Locks

I think your market slippage issue is a well known problem amongst algo traders. Why else would there be firms who relocate next to exchanges to have the lowest latency possible in order to frontrun other algos?

As for advice, let me ask you this question: How long have you been focused on developping/backtesting your system? Perhaps you're developing tunnelvision and need to step back and reconsider your situation. Mistakes happen, especially with code. Perhaps minor adjustments will allow you to reverse the effects. Maybe it's your indicators. Whatever it is, I think that that's not what you should look into right now. You sound distressed and your state of mind is probably restricting your lucidity. Take some time off and do something that will take you off of this topic. Your subconscious won't stop thinking about the problems that you face and that's all you need to regain clarity over the situation. This is what people mean when they say "Give it time".

When you regain a neutral state over this matter. Go back through all your methods. Act as if you knew absolutely nothing about markets and trading and begin questioning each of your steps. In other terms; unlearn. This is a stage where you clean up and get rid of things that hinder you. Look at each indicator and ask yourself if this is making money for you. If not, remove it. You can always bring it back later, but try working from scratch and rebuilding, as necessary.

The cleanup is not only done on your technical analysis. It has to be applied to how you view the markets and your position in it. Go through all the "common sense" talk that goes through your head. What do you tell yourself, that once rationalized, don't make any sense? Think about what you think. I'll say it again. Think about what you think, because it can easily cloud your judgment, specially when trades go against you. If you win over your mind, the battle is halfway won. If your mind losses and negativity takes over, the battle will be a bitch to win.

Here's a tip: Cover your eyes with your hands and think in your head that once your hands have covered your eyes, your eyes have been swapped with a new pair of eyes. Now open your new eyes and look again at your problems and don't forget that you are now looking at your problems with a new pair of eyes. From someone else, perhaps. And these eyes allow you to see things differently, as if you were someone else.

Once you believe this, you will have an easier time seeing your problems from new angles and solutions should appear more easily.

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  #25 (permalink)
bwasi
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
 
 
Posts: 31 since Nov 2009
Thanks: 16 given, 34 received

once a while , a chart is a good reference for your own review later.
that will check your if your thinking (writing) and reality (chart) is linking together.

You'll develop a feel after about 2 or 3 years minimum, and after a lots of mistakes.
I will advise you to avoid indicators but you'll not want to follow this advice as you may think they are beatiful ;
I can type here 3 long pages of advice but I think it will be waste of YoUR time
I switched to US market 3 years ago..and you'll know why sooner or later...

here is a Singapore trader blog for your ref...
https://juzjules.blogspot.com/

Welcome to the JunGLe and Good Luck from a KL pt trader.

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Elite only
 

Our 12-year anniversary w/ $$,$$$ prizes (check soon)

June
     



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