Good choice of book on your early path. I wish I had heard of Al Brooks in the beginning. I'd say his book is equivalent to a reading-price-charts-101 required class that most had never heard about. It's hard reading at first. The first chapter has a bunch of his terminology and references to all over the book, but if you reread it and get familiar with his terminology, the rest of the book is easier to get through. If you're not in a hurry, I suggest you skip this book and get his new edition books which should be out next month. Al said he wrote the original book in a month rushed, and didn't have time to edit and proofread it. The new editions had another trader proof read it and it's bigger, much easier to read, with much better printed charts.
Here's another site with a free video course on general trading and trading psychology. www.emini-watch.com You don't have to buy the indicators. And he does a video trading blog every other day. Great progress on your beginning journal.
Last edited by Cloudy; October 18th, 2011 at 03:59 PM.
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Ahhh...a brand new day. Everyday starts out with so much promise...
Still looking at he old 5 minute shart with the EMA 20 as my sole indicator. read more of Brooks on price action, so I put up an indicator based on his process in his book. Very cool...puts the h's and l's right on the chart so i dont have to count the bars. These indicators are free?
Anyway, plugging away at chart reading, and trying to place smart trades. Itws working pretty well from a logistical perspective. Today i thought I can actually do this right.
Today is a learnig week...not really trading as I have too much going on this week. I HAVE A REAL JOB THAT IS SUCKING UP MY TIME.
Thanks for the tips Cloudy...I appreciate your feedback.
took some heat...was down 3 points at 8:50 , but I was convinced it was taking a breather.
Did recover, but I felt the trend wasnt developing, so I got out with only the 2 ticks. Looking back, wasnt a good entry, I was fortunate to get out withy the small profit. But, it kept running.
3. 9:20 long at 1224.50 +4 ticks
As it turns out, it made a nice run all the way to 1235.75.
As a result, 4 ticks looks puny in comparison.
But, I chose to look at this another way. I am trading the right side of the chart, and its only in hindsight that I can see how nice a run it turned into.
Only did the 3 trades. up 15 ticks.
What did I do right? Stuck to a disciplined approach, and only stayed in the trade to get small ticks. I will expand my stratagy as I gain more competence in reading the chart over time in different markets. Either a trending up, a trending down or a sideways market.
A couple of interesting observations. When I have a chart side by side, in the ES and the 6E and even CL, the chartshave similar corelation. Dont think it really means anything, or if you can actually use that to trade.
Position sizing is important, and that the number of contracts and the stops you put on, including trailing stops, can expand your profits. For instance, in bigger trends, if I had a strategy to add contracts after i was in a breakeven or a profit positiobn, I could have let the last move in the ES run. But to place a stategy like that manually is prone to error. And to have a different strategy for different markets is also important.
I am thinking that, when i increase my contract size, I can have 3 steps in place.
Step 1 Break even trade, step 2 profitable trade and step 3 a runner with a trailing stop, once the profit target is hit.
And to have a similar strategy for either a trending or sideways market.
For now, just building consitency and comfort with my trading.
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Discovered replay data over the weekend. Wanted to practice entries and exits and to see actual price action in faster times. What a remarkable tool. Speed up 5 minute chart, so that I can see the develpoment of trends like a 1 minute chart. What a great way to develop screen experience.
Does it matter that the information is already available. I dont think so because I am trading bar by bar, and only looking for 3 to 6 ticks in the trends. And really trying to limit my trades to highest probabitlity trades.
I am happy with what I did today. Was at my Station at 8:30. After a little work on Saturday, I was prepared to trade the ES this morning. Have things to do, so I was determiuned to restrict my time to the best possible trades.
All these on the ES.
long at 8:45 1235.75 Sold at 1239.00
Looked to be a break to the upside.
+ 5 ticks
Long at 8:49 1237.00 Sold 1237.50
+ 2 ticks
Still looked for continued high, but didnt develop as I was anticipating. Stalled a bit, so i got out with 2 tciks.
Long at 8:52 1237.50 Sold 1238.50
+ 4 Ticks
Long at 9:03 1238.00 Sold 1238.75
seemed to be stalling a bit, and expected if the trend ddint continue, there would be a slight pullback to fill the gap.
I am quite pleased with my performance today. Approached with discipline, and I did not rely on indicators, but rather focused on price action alone.
Is this really that simple? When I look at futures.io (formerly BMT) and the myriad of methods and indicators and such, it all seems overwhelming. But if I keep it real simple, I am way less anxious, and I am far more confident in my decisions. Just buy when it is going up, and sell when itis going down. Seems to me a simple strategy requires a simple approach.
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Weird stuff happening on Ninja Trader. couldnt figure out how various acccounts are giving me eroneous readings, so I had to reload lots of my data. Going to backup from now on, so that i can recall my information.
One particular problem happen on the ES at 9:35 EST...significant downward push, and i was on the right side of the trade, however, for some reason, NT had me long, when i went short on the trade. It registered correctly on the chart, but my summary was wrong. Have no idea what caused the problem. but I reset the NT, and had to clear my executions. i wrote them down in my journal, but it is still a pain.
With trades needing to be executed imediately, i wonder what happens when such a situation is live?
Anyway, I had to calculate out my P and L by hand.
12 trades today
Trending down day, so most of my positions were shorts.
Preety good today. Off to a slow start was down 16 ticks at one point, but came back in the late morning and afternoon sessions.
Set a bigger stop based on price action and the daily range, off a 5 minute chart on the ES and caught a couple of good movers.
More than a few trades. 23, but I must have had 6 hours in front of the screen. Placed a couple of trades, set my stops and walked away from the computer, as I was confident. I counted those as screen time trades as well. I just came back to check how things were going.
Still I feel I am guessing to much, and some trades are not as confident as others.
Still this is an interesting journey i am on. Reading Brooks and I find much of his descriptions interesting to say the least.
This journal entry is a day late as i got busy, yesterday. Will do todays entries later today.
Did a lot of studying and meditating on the weekend. I have seen some blogs of traders who trade a whole week at 100 %. I cant figure that out. If a trader is 100% week after week, why wouldnt one trade for an hour in the morning and take the rest of the day off? No one can trade 100% week after week live. If you have a completely elastic source of funds, I guess you could take a lot of heat and still ride out the peaks and valleys. But is that realistic? Of course not. How can one sit in a position down a significant amount of funds and still ride it out?
Dipped my toe in the CL the last couple of days after practicing on the replay market data. Did this for a couple of reasons.
1. I wanted to practice multiple contracts and postion size and stop strtegies, and the CL has big swings.
2. I used to work in the oil industry. Pipelines, ags plants, drilling and maintanance in Alberta, Canada. my brother is a petroleum engineer, so i feel I have a bit of an affiliation with the substance.
Stepped up to 4 contracts from 2 contracts.
Pretty simple 4 contracxts in , 2 with a stop of 10 ticks with a target of 15, the secong 2 with a stop of 12 and and no limit on the upside, but I set a trailing stop of 5 ticks. might be a little tight, but I figure I will learn as i go. I havnt written these in stone, but I will move the stop if it isnt moving like I anticipate.
Trading with the trend 75% of the time. Anticipating swings or retacements the other 25%.
13 trades 61.54% efficient 8 winners, 5 losers, because of my stops being hit fast.But if my stops were wider, I was pretty good on the trades. Even the losers, I was eventua;lly on the right side. (of course, you can always trade at 50%) You have a 1 in 2 chance of being right on every trade.
Wrote out my performance yesterday, but took too long to post and had some kinda timeout that lost my text. So, no post yesterday.
11 trades yesterday. 3 losers. was an up and down day. Worst trade entry hit my stop in a blink. Lost 36 ticks in a millisecond...happens.
But a had some better winners too. Still trading 4 cars with a strategy and trailing stops. That way i can limit my downside risk when the trade goes the way I antcipate.
up 190 ticks on 1 contract. Because of the various protective and trailing stops, the contracts fill at different intervals. i am trading 4 contracts because the 1 contract in and out was like watching paint dry, and I was losing interest and placing too many trades, to make it worth my time. After all, If I make more money at my real job per hour than trading, why would I trade? The issue for me isnt wether I need another career. I already have one of those.
Trading for me fuels my interest in the investment markets, an interst I have had since my teens. For years i listened to fund managers and had them show me charts, and now i , for the first time, i am getting a sense of really seeing what they are telling me about investments. This is more about understanding the investment world, and myself, if that makes any sense.
Today i think I had a bit of a breakthrough.
I succeeded in disciplining myself to only taking HPT. Still trading the 5 minute with EMA 20. i have better volume as an indicator, but only to monitor price action. not really paying attention to it.
Trade 1 Short @ 8:10 +10 ticks.
Trade 2 Short @ 8:28 + 0....trade didnt develop, so i bailed on it
Trade 3 Short @ 8:30 +82 unfolded the way I anticipated at 8:28, so i got back into the short
Trade 4 Long @ 8:52 +74 nice move from off the EMA 20
Trade 5 Long @ 9:26 +28 trend stalled, so I got manually closed
Trade 6 Long @ 9:34 +28 Started to move and then reversed and hit my trailing stops
positive 222 ticks I trade only 4 ticks with a 2 stage strategy. Average of 55.5 ticks per contract.
I am trying to keep it simple, without a lot of indicators. Got overloaded when I tried that a few weeks back, and I found I was letting the indicators do my resoning for me, instead of doing it for myself. The most complicated, and powerful compurter in the world, is the 6 inch one between your own 2 ears.
Anyway, lokking over these last few weeks has been very helpful, and I think i am making progress. It feels like progress. It certainly is not as easy as it looks...or as easy as one can explain.
Buy things that are going up, sell things that are going down.
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