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Day Trading Stocks with Discretion


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Day Trading Stocks with Discretion

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  #101 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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5 losers. -$80 net.

Trade 1 was ok timing, right direction. Was a little surprised in the strength of the sell of. Got stopped out at break even after running $1 in my favor. That is a little much to give back on a trade. Need to think about how much I want to give back after big moves.

Trade 2 was the first pullback after the strong sell off. I need to wait for the second chance. Markets rarely trade in a pure zig zag. They bobble and bounce, which means you will often get a second chance at the same or better price, but without the same heat. Full stop loss.

Trade 3 was taken after price bounced off support around $149.40 for the fifth time today. I have been in a string of losers, which was making me shy with my stops. Now the bounce was after a lower high, so I did have some right to be defensive. But a string of losers will force break even trades when profits are nearby. As was the case here, could have picked up $200 on this trade if patient.

Trade 4 was the second pull back on a strong push up. If this resistance level was broken, it would be a new multi-month high, so i was willing to wait to see if it played out rather than just trying to scalp this one at resistance. Stopped at break even.

Trade 5 was a second pull back after a strong sell off and a push off the resistance of $149.40 that was support 6 times today. I thought this was the pullback after the break out. No dice - full stop. Again, if I had waited for the second "entry" by which time maybe I would have seen the weakening signs.

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  #102 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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Adding this week's trades...

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  #103 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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4 losers. -$60 net. Fourth day of consecutive losses.

Trade 1 could have been an amazing trade. $151 was the top. Break through that and the sky is the limit. Looks like a day trader had a similar idea. Look at the spike of volume at 7:18am on the run up and the spike at 7:36 near the way down. Probably a $7000-10,000 trade if it was one person who pulled it off. I was in it only to see if it took off. Not today.

Trade 2 was after the second pullback on the sharp sell off <$2 of travel, not what I would expect from even a range day, but price did not push through the $149.50 level for long. I got out for half a full stop.

Trade 3 shows the long series of losses taking its toll. Now I had taken heat once already (rarely do I need to take heat twice, I am usually just wrong by then), but I let a push through the 21 EMA shake me out of what could have been a $100+ trade.

Trade 4 was a short after the trendline was broken. Market went into chop afterwards, which took out my stop.

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  #104 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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4 winners. $520 net. 4-day streak broken with record day.

Trade 1 was a test of yesterday's close. Price did not push higher, took the short. Was quick to move the stop to BE, but patient afterwards. Jammed stop when I hit $1. Was happy with this exit. The earlier trades in the day tend to have wider stops because the volatility is higher, so if it goes my way, I should get out, and then have another chance to enter again on pullback when vol is lower. Like what happened with Trade 2.

Trade 2 was off a pullback. The previous bar at 8:12am had a pretty good tail on top, which coincided with previous resistance. As I approached $1 profit, i was very aggressive with the stop.

Trade 3 was a pullback looking for continuation after the lower low. Moved stop once to break even. Then jammed the stop after price tested $147.50 for the second time.

Trade 4 was taken after price pushed through the EMA21 after the double bottom formation. This was a counter trend at the point of entry; although there was a slight pullback at 10:09am. I was concerned about resistance at $148.75, so I set a target just $0.50 higher than entry, and just inside $148.75. Big mistake. Left 5R on the table. I was expecting price to flatline after 10:30, like it did at noon.

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  #105 (permalink)
 Big Mike 
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  #106 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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Two trades. 1 winner, 1 loser. $160 net.

Trade 1 was a little early. Would have been nice to catch all that nice easy down trend slope. I need to think about being more patient for the second entry (like at 7:30a or 7:48a). Stopped out just 10 minutes too early. Instead, I spent 9-10am waiting for a reversal (not suspecting trend day). Almost got long around 10am.

Trade 2 was more of a desperation trade. I suspected I would have resistance and possible a bottom for the day at $147, but I was sick of watching the trend down without me. I probably would have bailed at break even at 11:09am, except I wasn't watching then. Jammed my stop at $1 profit, 5R trade, at 12:12. Only 45 minutes left in the session wasn't expecting another leg down. Left 4R on the table there.

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  #107 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 2 losers. $220 net.

Trade 1 I waite for the pullback after the breakout at $147. Maybe could have gotten BE at 7:27am, but wasn't in the right trade at this point.

Trade 2 shorted after the push back through $147 and the bounce off the same level. Price bounced for 10 more minutes, then got a good move. Once I hit $1 of price in my favor, I was watching my stop very closely . Really debated when to jam my stop. Managed to get to $1.50 of price in my favor, a nice 7.5R trade, and took it. Left another 2R on the table, but price was over $1 away from the 21EMA, which doesn't happen often.

Trade 3 was a little embarrassing. It was at least with trend, and part of a continuation triangle, suggesting pressure was still on the downside. AND the 21EMA had had a chance to catch up to price. I also had visions of $ugarplums in my head because $145.60 was a multi-multi-day low after a huge gap up on earnings. If this level broke, we could close the gap, which would be a big day. HOWEVER, Mr. Market also bounced off $145.35 not once, not twice, but three times - holding its ground. Then on the fourth push lower, ever so dropping below the prior three, it closed up. My mind should have been screaming TRAP, but but instead it was thinking about how I was going to add to my winning trade as price broke down further. Sigh. Second full loss for the day ended trading.

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  #108 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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2 losers. net -$40

Was away from desk for most of the day. Not a great day. Gap up was half the move, only really $1 of range for most of the day.

Trade 1 was an attempt to jump on the gentle up ramp. Out at BE.

Trade 2 was a little silly give the day and the run in the markets. The trend line was broken, but not much of a signal beyond that.

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  #109 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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Fifth week of profitable trades, although, one of those weeks was just barely: 691, 10, 473, 97, 800.

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  #110 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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2 winners, 2 losers. Net $51.

Very tight range day. Only really $0.80 of range.

Trade 1 was a continuation of what could have been the trend after a HH/HL. Stopped out for a modest gain.

Trade 2 was a continuation of trend after another HH/HL. This turned out to be a trap. Full stop loss in 1 bar.

Trade 3 After the next low did not break the previous low, I got long again - targeting to get back to $150.20. No dice, was taken out for a tick. It happens.

I thought I was done for the day, but then at 12:33, I saw a large order go in as we crossed $150. Hypothesis was it was a day trade looking to make a few pennies on tens of thousands of shares. Given we were in a tight range day this would likely reverse strongly if it didn't pan out. If it was one guy, he probably made $1-3k, nice work. But price stalled at $150.20 again. I jumped in off the 1min chart on a breakdown. Took a little heat and then end of day volume stepped in and took price below $150, and I got my push down for the close.

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  #111 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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2 losers, -$80.

Day started off with a very strong opening, pushing through the significant resistant level of $151 in the first 3 minutes, and then closing the gap to $153, which I have been waiting for all week in the next 15 minutes. Wasn't on my screen to even see it happen. Don't know if I would have caught it that early in the session even if I had been.

I should have taken the long at the close of 7:03 after the second failed push for $153, but I was torn between looking for a strong trend day or a spike and channel day. After watching the market grind higher for a half hour, I took a pretty lousy entry at 7:33, assuming that the spike would be followed with a gradual upward sloping channel. That thesis should have been invalidated around 7:52.

But Trade 2 was still playing off the strong bullish sentiment, looking for a test of $153 as support. Instead I got my channel, but downward sloping. I was expecting something like a complex correction upward, given the early strength.

If I had caught the down channel, I suspect my entry would have been between 9:30 and 9:45, as price broke down through $153. I probably would have bailed on the trade at $152, rather than hold through the close. The spike and channel looked text book on the 30 min chart. It looked a little off on the 3 min chart, at least the spike part did.

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  #112 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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2 losers, net -$40

Very tight trading range. Almost $0.50 vs an median day of $2.

Trade 1 was taken after what looked like 3 lower highs. Managed to eek out at BE.

Trade 2 was a trap. The lows kept on creeping up, and I thought I had a breakout coming. Stopped out quickly.

Stayed out for the rest of the day, which was the best trade.

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 bijeremiad 
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3 winners, 2 losers. Net $130.

Trade 1 was taken after a failed push up after the low of the day at that point and a lower high. Took some heat, but came out. As price approached a level with various support points, I jammed my stop in as profits came closer to $1.

Trade 2 should have been my last trade. I saw the strong reversal bar from 7:48-7:54. After a higher low was put in at 8:06 I was long the break out above the high of 8:09. I should have taken more comfort in price taking out the previous highs at 8:33, but as priced pushed through the 21 EMA, I jammed my stop in for an exit.

Then when price failed to take out the high again, I went short and was taken out shortly in Trade 3.

Fortunately, I eventually recognized this as a complex correction and got back into Trade 2 again. After eight bars tried to push through $149, I bailed just shy of that resistance level - leaving about 1R on the table.

Trade 5 was a little aggressive - no broken trend line, no second test. Just sense that we were range bound and not going anywhere. Ended getting out at BE.

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  #114 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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2 losers, net -$80.

If I have to take a day of two full stops, I guess this is the way to go.

Trade 1 was after three lower highs (although not a lower low just prior). This looked pretty good for a first pullback after breakout. But stopped out. I was hesitant to take the lower high at 7:42 because I was missing the lower low.

Trade 2 was a push off the 21 EMA. Now it was the fourth, but it was a fairly strong down day. Stopped out.

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  #115 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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Week ended down -$20, killed the positive week streak.

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  #116 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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2 losers, net -$80.

Tough day to stop out twice, since it had such a nice upward sloping trend for 4 hours.

Trade 1 I got in after price bounced off the 21 EMA and looked to be breaking higher, but got stopped out the next bar with a quick swing.

Trade 2 looked like I was trading off a lower high, and I felt really smart for about 60 seconds as price went through the low of the prior bar, but then snapped back up, which should have been concerning. As price failed to push lower for the next 4 bars, I debated flipping my position, but I was already two bad trades in. Spent the rest of the day watching the easy slope up. Ugh.

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  #117 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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2 losers, net -$80.

So recently, I have been frustrated by having two bad trades close together and then missing what seemed to be easy set ups later in the day. So I decided to wait a little longer after my first trade. Turns out, I just am not mentally ready to catch those set ups.

Trade 1 looked like a bullback after breaking out above $150.25. Turns out, $150 was the more relevant level.

Trade 2 looked like it could be a pullback. In retrospect, it was deep. The run up was $1.50, and the pullback was $1.00, so 66% retracement. I bought just before the expected breakout above $151 - never happened.

I did hesitate at key points during the day, which I marked with purple boxes:

Hesitation 1 was a breakout above $150.25, or a failed breakout of $150. Would have been a great 6R trade.

Hesitation 2 was a breakout above $151. Would have been a 1R trade.

Hesitation 3 was a short after testing $151.50 for the second time. But it was countertrend, and the trend had been strong for two days now. Would have been a 4-20R trade depending on how I trailed stops.

Hesitation 4 was a complex pullback set up for a long. Not great, would have been a full stop loss. Trend line from last two days already broken (blue dash line), the pullback was already deep (as a % of push up) and large (absolute $ amount).

Hesitation 5 was a short on pullback to the EMA21. Would have been a 3R trade.

So great market day for trading, just wasn't there myself.

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  #118 (permalink)
 dario1 
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bijeremiad View Post
2 losers.


@bijeremiad
You have a good set-up chart but I think you have to learn more how to read it
-- just look at your volume panel and how correlates with the price
observe & learn
D

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  #119 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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dario1 View Post
@bijeremiad
You have a good set-up chart but I think you have to learn more how to read it
-- just look at your volume panel and how correlates with the price
observe & learn
D

@dario1, which volume bars standout to you? I did react to volume at 10:39, but turned out that the spike in volume was 1 tick with 5000 shares.

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  #120 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 2 losers. $40.

Another very flat day. Most of the day in a $0.60 range.

Trade 1 was a short off the 21EMA. After price bounced off a higher low at $149.20, I tapped out at break even. I don't know that I would have captured any of the $0.50 move right afterwards - it was pretty v-shaped and quick.

Trade 2 was a close above the EMA21 off some strong bars, but not much carry through. Exited at BE.

Trade 3 was after 7 bars of VFC trying to push below $149. I figured there would be some trapped traders with stops around $149.20. Not much follow through here either, but got a 1R trade.

I don't have purple boxes for my hesitations:

Hes1 short at 9:54, would have been good for 2R. I was worried about getting stuck in chop for hours. It would have been a 2 hour trade.

Hes2 long at 11:12 after failed push below $149. Might have been stopped out, might have been 2R trade. Was worried about a countertrend trade.

Hes3 short at 11:54. Would have stopped out. Didn't like how price kept pushing back above $149.

Hes4 short at 12:48. Was already late in the session. Might have been a 1R trade.

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  #121 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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My equity curve has been flat for the last few days. Not a major drawdown, but the successive losses still take their toll. The volatility has been brutally slow. The volume has been very thin too. I went back and looked at the intraday ranges for since August began. Remember that historically a $3 range is the median with the lower quartile starting around $2.

1-Aug 4.65
2-Aug 2.75
3-Aug 1.49
6-Aug 1.08
7-Aug 2.76
8-Aug 0.71
9-Aug 1.80
10-Aug 2.68
13-Aug 2.46
14-Aug 2.31
15-Aug 0.84


So, the 1st and 2nd were good days and I netted positive. The 7th, 10th, and 13th were great trend days (even if on the tighter side), but I played them poorly. The rest have been very tight days. Not sure if I can identify those ahead of time or not.

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  #122 (permalink)
 dario1 
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bijeremiad View Post
@dario1, which volume bars standout to you? I did react to volume at 10:39, but turned out that the spike in volume was 1 tick with 5000 shares.

@bijeremiad
Look for "Yao Ming" volume bar like the one on the right side of your chart.
Usually the "Yao Ming" bars are good indication that the trend will end and possibly reverse.

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  #123 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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2 winners, 1 loser, net $270.

Trade 1 Price had been showing resistance at $149.60 from yesterday. After two failed pushes higher I went short, but felt as soon as I pulled the trigger, that I had made a mistake. Was stopped out in the next bar.

Trade 2 Without any lower lows I took one of the next bars as it closed higher. Price looked like it was starting to stall around $151.13. I already had $1 of profit locked for 200 shares and a 5R trade, but I didn't feel like the day could go much higher. I also had a meeting coming up, so I jammed my stop up for an exit. Although, even if I had held on, I would likely have been shaken out around 10:45 at the same level as where I did.

Trade 3 Realizing that I never really got good price action and the day could go higher, so I took the break above a resistance level during the day. Only made about 1R to offset the loser of the day.

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 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 1 loser, net $66.

Trade 1 was taken while vol was still high, so only 1 lot taken. As price broke out of its channel at 7:57am, I debated riding the stop tighter. But the peak bar was only $0.40 tall. However in the context, it was still relatively tall. Was stopped out at the 21 EMA.

Trade 2 was looking for the High of the day to serve as resistance. Ended up bailing at BE after a higher high.

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 bijeremiad 
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When I was half way through this last "month" and was up 4.6%, i thought I would end the month better than the 5% I had seen the previous two months. But then I hit a losing streak and only ended up adding 50bps for the last two weeks.

Here are the summary statistics for the past three months:


Each month has averaged about 5%. Although my win% keeps slipping; although that is offset by a higher win/loss ratio. That leaves me up 15.15% for the last 3 months, but also dependent on the higher-winning days. The equity curve is also attached.

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223552
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Hey,

I am not an expert in day trading, so just trying to lend a helping hand here. Have you heard of SMB Capital? They are a day trading prop shop, and have a lot of free info on their site (google it). They do "tape reading", which I believe gives them an edge, as well as charts. If you subscribe to them on twitter/facebook they also announce daily which stocks are "in play" That is the stocks they have picked to trade on that particular day (based on news/announcements etc) The owner of the firm, also has a book out which I am reading at the moment (a really enjoyable read!) Its called " One good trade"

Hope this helps.

Cheers,
Felix

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 bijeremiad 
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@223552 Thanks for the suggestion. I have heard of SMB, but was not aware of their in play list. I have also read sections of One Good Trade, but not the whole of it. I will put it on my to-read list. Right now I am focused on just 1 stock. Originally, I was looking at a list of about 300. Then I whittled it down to 6. And for now, just 1. The volatility helps. The diversity helps on slow days. I imagine there are similarities from different "plays". But they were other variables that were clouding my focus at the time. Once I get this phase "hammered out" I will go looking outside, but I have found the 1-stock focus helpful for now.

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 bijeremiad 
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I took the last week off on vacation. No trades for 8/20-8/24. Doesn't look like I missed too much, maybe one interesting day. I need to develop a way to review days that I miss for one reason or another.

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 bijeremiad 
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1 loser, net -$40.

I spent most of today watching the miserable liquidity and telling myself I should sit this next week out. Then I stepped away for lunch at 11:30 and missed the high volume rejection of $150.40 at 11:45. Seeing that volume was back a little towards the end of the day I took a short after what looked to be a lower high and failed push higher. I was late on entry and early on timing. Wouldn't have been a great trade 1R.

I wonder if there is a way to look at the trading in the first 15 minutes or 30 minutes to get a sense for liquidity later in the day?

It wasn't a great day to trade, only $1.20 of range - maybe get $0.60 out of it. I had a few hesitations during the day, but the big miss was when I was thinking of shorting around 7:27am. Should have been thinking long after the failure to put in lower lows and the closes above the 21EMA.

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 bijeremiad 
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2 winners, 1 loser. Net $170.

Trade 1 was a countertrend scalp that I hesitated on a little too long. Was hoping to take it back to the EMA21. Made 1 push, then took some heat, made a second push, and bailed at BE.

Trade 2 was continuation of trend off a higher low. Felt patient in the channel. I wanted a target of $153. High of a few days ago was $153.50, but vol was light. Price stalled after $152.50 and broke throuhg the EMA21, so I bailed. After I jammed my stop, I felt it may have been premature.

Trade 3 was waiting to see if a complex correction would set up (price honoring the yellow dotted line, despite a lower high), which it did. Got in close to my exit from trade 2 and got very close to my original target of $153. After price failed to push through $153 on its second attempt and lots of volume at 11:33am, I bailed.

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 bijeremiad 
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2 losers. -$65.

Trade 1 was a bit of a chase for a breakout above the first bar that closed above the EMA21. I hesitated about getting out around $152.90 after price bounced off resistance from yesterday (and the second time today), but I did not, and ended getting out at a prior swing low.

Trade 2 was a little late, but a bounce off the EMA21. I think I let my loss in trade 1 put me in a bearish bias too soon. Actually, it looks like a pretty valid set up. But it was the bottom tick of the day. Stopped out. In fact there was a nasty gap between bar just before 8:12am; hope I would have been strong enough to lift the offer as it moved up.

I was out for the day. Thought I saw a short at 9:18am after 4 bounces off of $152.90. Nope, just trend.

I was thinking of another hypothetical short late in the day at 12:15pm after breaking down below S/R of $153.10. It was a little early and didn't have much of a run.

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 bijeremiad 
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2 winners, $230.

Trade 1 was a break down past a prior intraday stopping point. I was looking for a pullback to the EMA21 or resistance around $151.50, but neither happened. I did bounce off a trendline. Price was much weaker in VFC than the S&P, so I took the short down. With $151.50 out of the way, I thought the next stop would be $150. But VFC saw consolidation for 18 minutes after a strong push down. As price peeked above the resistance line, I jammed out.

I missed a good $1 of rally, until finally jumping in after the first pullback at 8:13am. Went long expecting to get maybe a 2R trade or maybe up to the high of the day at $152.50. I almost panicked and jumped at 9:21am when a boatload of volume came through after price had slowed. Ended up jamming my stop to get out just below my higher target of $152.50, after 3 pushed towards the level.

I hesitated on a long at 11:33am, which would have worked for 1.5R. I hesitated on a short around $152.50, which would not have worked.

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 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 6 losers, net -$3.

Traded like I felt today: running in place. After a week of 25 hours of sleep, should have taken the day off.

Trade 1 After 4 lower highs, I felt this was with trend. I did ignore the higher low at 7:30. After taking heat on the first bar of the trade, I trimmed my stop and was taken out shortly after that.

Trade 2 was a long after 2 higher lows and a close above the EMA21. When price above $153 was rejected, I became defensive with my stop. Already at this point, I think I was trading to not hit two negative trades that woiuld close me out for the day.

Trade 3 was after another higher low still. And again around $153 for the same psychological reasons I jumped out at single-dollar profits.

Trade 4 was after price broke an uptrend line and putting in a double top. This short ended up being into resistance. Price came back to my entry point and started to trade down briefly. I jammed my stop lower to BE. I was a little slow to realize that

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 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 6 losers, net -$3.

Traded like I felt today: running in place. After a week of 25 hours of sleep, should have taken the day off.

Trade 1 After 4 lower highs, I felt this was with trend. I did ignore the higher low at 7:30. After taking heat on the first bar of the trade, I trimmed my stop and was taken out shortly after that.

Trade 2 was a long after 2 higher lows and a close above the EMA21. When price above $153 was rejected, I became defensive with my stop. Already at this point, I think I was trading to not hit two negative trades that woiuld close me out for the day.

Trade 3 was after another higher low still. And again around $153 for the same psychological reasons I jumped out at single-dollar profits.

Trade 4 was after price broke an uptrend line and putting in a double top. This short ended up being into resistance. Price came back to my entry point and started to trade down briefly. I jammed my stop lower to BE. I was a little slow to realize that price was failing to push through resistance from the prior day. Still not wanting to end for the day, I bailed at BE.

Trade 5 was a flip after seeing price break a longish resistance trend line. Held this for a small gain. Jammed out after price failed to go higher.

Trade 6 should never have happened. I should stop at trade 5. But I had a lower high and a break of a trend support line. Ended getting out at a modest loss.

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 bijeremiad 
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Equity curve with last week's results added. I included dates and vertical lines so you can see where weeks begin/end.

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 Big Mike 
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bijeremiad View Post
Equity curve with last week's results added. I included dates and vertical lines so you can see where weeks begin/end.

Nice work.



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 bijeremiad 
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3 losers, -$80.

Trade 1 was a embarrassing. Obviously countertrend. i thought after 36 minutes of consolidation after a stronger-than market sell-off, I would see a reversal. No luck. Stopped out in 10 minutes.

Trade 2 was a break out below 150.25, and a late one at that. Took heat, but got to break even. Unfortunately, because I was long, I didn't clearly see the potential double bottom put in.

Trade 3 was done looking for a complex correction, which never materialized. Was out for the day. I had hesitated just 15 minutes earlier about getting long, but as price continued to trade through where I thought the pullback would go to, I changed my mind to short. I did have the bounce off the EMA21, after trading through the average at 9:03am.

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 bijeremiad 
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1 Winner, 2 Losers. Net -$4.

Trade 1 was intended to be a pullback. Price had put in a lower high and a lower low. I entered after an even lower high. Stopped out in bars.

Trade 2 was a test off of a recent intraday level. Even though it was followed by a lower low. I felt like the day would be range bound, and exited after a trendline had been broken.

Trade 3 was the first pullback after price reversed through the EMA21. It was apparent after a few bars that my entry had been a trap. Price never cleared the previous high, so i pulled out early.

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 bijeremiad 
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3 losers. Net -$80.

Trade 1 was taken near the bottom of a triangle, a pullback after a higher low (but also preceded by a lower high). When price failed to carry higher, I dropped out at break even.

Trade 2 was a breakout, suspecting that I had gotten direction wrong on the previous trade. After price broker through the low of the previous swing point, I went short. Was stopped out in a few bars.

Trade 3 was intended to be a test of a previous intraday swing point. A curious position to take after the strength that price showed in the prior 5 bars going into the "set up." Stopped out.

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 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 3 losers. $56.

Trade 1 was a trade off of a pullback, but was late enough it looks more like a breakout. It was also done very close to a resistance point. Should have been more defensive with resistance so close. Stopped out.

Trade 2 was a break out trade after price didn't go past prior days' resistance. Although the trade was countertrend. I didn't give the trade much space and stopped out at BE.


Trade 3 was a flip around after a higher low suggested the trend was up after all, but it didn't move very fast, so I bailed at BE.

Trade 4 was a pullback off the EMA21. Moved my stop once but trade was in my favor for most of the time. Held to the close.

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 bijeremiad 
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Equity curve as of 9/7/12. Negative for the week, but losses were small. Still around to trade next week...

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 bijeremiad 
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2 winners, 2 losers. Net $66.

Trade 1 was a pullback off the EMA21. Could have been a little more aggressive with my stops, but $156.16 was the 52-week high, so if price broke above that level, I wanted to be long. So I gave it some slack and was stopped out.

Trade 2 was another pullback off the EMA21. Tried to put on a tighter stop and was taken out 2 bars later.

Trade 3 was still another attempt to be in position for a break above the 52-week high. But after it failed to make the push once, I was on the look out for an exit. After a second failed push up, I was out the next bar.

Trade 4 was after the brief push above the 52 week high. But I was also nervous being short for a complex pullback with a push back to the highs, so after one push up, I moved my stop down, per my usual risk management practice. Was stopped out. Price ran 5R in my favor, never got back in. I watched for a few more bars and had high limit orders (in pruple) that never got touched. Focus drifted to other things after that.

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 bijeremiad 
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1 trade. Net $272.

Trade 1 was after a close above the EMA21. I hesitated on exit a couple times during the trade. Once at 5R. Once at 6.5R. And once at 8R. Ended up getting out at 6.8, so didn't give up too much, and let the winner run past where I thought about getting out before. Good day, either way.

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 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 2 losers. Net $78.

Trade 1 was a pullback off the EMA21, looking for the prior trend to continue. After two "deep" pullbacks near my stop and two higher lows, I abandoned the short for BE.

Trade 2 was a bit of a chaser for me. I was and should have continued waiting for price to pull back but became anxious as price continued to trade higher after reversing from the prior downward trend. Full stop was hit in 15 minutes.

Trade 3 right in the middle of a long consolidation period. I was very close to bailing out of the position around 12:15, but price continued to fail to push above 156.15. I jumped out with just 9 minutes left until the market close.

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 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 2 losers. Net $180. Fifth positive-day streak, which has not happened before.

Trade 1 was a breakout trade - too late to be considered a pull back. Price had made a large push up, tried to catch a continuation of that push. After two failed pushes up, I exited on a stop for a small loss based on a prior swing low point.

Trade 2 was long after price crossed above the EMA21. Looking for price to continue up. After almost $0.80 in my favor, decided to exit at BE. This was giving back a bit much, but Fed announcement was coming up and price did not seem to be moving higher as expected. Probably should have taken a small profit around 8:30.

Trade 3 was after the announcement. Large push up at 9:30; price traded back. I took the break out above the initial push. I would have liked to be long 200 shares with a $0.20 stop, but volatility had been high all day, so I only had 100 with a $0.40 stop. Was patient ratcheting my stop, which meant I ended up giving back a bit on the final pullback, but didn't get shaken out on the run up. I should have been suspicious of the push up at 11:24 as a signal that perhaps things were coming to an end, but I thought the trend was coming to an end $1 ago. It was a 5R trade, can't complain.

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 bijeremiad 
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3 winners, 2 losers. $216 net. Sixth day of consecutive positive days.

Trade 1 was a pullback to the EMA21. I really thought about bailing at $163, since my entry was $163.20 with a $0.20 stop. But the bid held $163. I added a penny to my stop, and pulled out, but price did not clear the previous high. After taking heat I was quick to jump (which would later prove to be a mistake, first trade was the best trade of the day).

Trade 2 was a short after price tested a previous intraday swing high point. As I penciled in the trade, I knew it was countertrend. I thought I would just hold it for $0.20 and scalp it, but after price put in another higher low, I began to worry about fighting an uptrend. I put my stop at $162.61. And then I reversed a few pennies later.

Trade 3 was a flip. I do not like flipping positions, but I was fighting the wrong trend. Already up for the day by a healthy move, I set a price target $1 higher. After failing twice to push past $163.50, I bailed. That was early.

Trade 4 was catching yet another bounce off the EMA21. Getting late in the day and already seeing price up for the day I was feeling nervous about a continuation of trend. I jumped out early for a 2.5R trade.

By Trade 5 I was getting a little overconfident. I tried to catch the bounce off the EMA21 early rather than waiting for a confirmation that price was moving up. I got run over. I wasn't even watching when the final bounce came off of $163.50.

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 bijeremiad 
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This week puts me up 5.05% for the three weeks of this month. That gives me a chance to do better than the ~5% averaged over the last three months. We'll see what next week brings.


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 bijeremiad 
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1 loser. net $0. Frustrating day, could have easily been a $200-400 day, probably closer to $200 because the ATR5 was fairly elevated through out the day, so I only would have been long or short 100 shares, but some clean set ups. I just wasn't watching at the right time.

Trade 1 was a long after three failed attempts to push beyond $161.50. Once in I watched price move in my favor, retrace to take some heat. Once price moved back into positive territory, I moved my stop below the recent swing low. Price came back towards my entry and I bailed at BE. It would have been an "easy" 4R trade from that point on...

There was also a nice retrace to the EMA21 at 7am, would have been good for 2.5R.

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  #149 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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2 losers, net -$80.

Trade 1 was a break out trade. Price had already traded down far ($2.50) for the day and price was about $0.50 off the 21EMA already. Just about caught the bottom (not a good place to start a short). Stopped out 6 minutes later.

Trade 2 a bounce off the EMA21, but not really with trend. Ended up being minutes away from the top (not a good place to start a long). Stopped for the day.

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 bijeremiad 
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4 winners, 1 loser. Net $186.

Trade 1 was after a strong move up, intended to be a quick scalp and then look for a channel after the spike. Got out at my price target 1R lower. Had more to go, but stuck with plan.

Trade 2 was after a pullback that did not breach the prior low. I was suspecting an upward trending channel. So I sat through a complex correction and got a mediocre trade, would have been nice to get a runner, but these small profits are the price of waiting out for the longer runs.

Trade 3 was off the bounce of the underlying trend line (yellow), still a possible complex correction, as the prior low had not been violated. Traded sideways for 30min and bailed at BE.

Trade 4 was after a failed push higher. Price had seen 3 lower highs at this point, a long sideways consolidation, so i went short. Had a nice quick run. I thought price would channel down, but did not consider a sideways trend. Gave back some, small profit.

Trade 5 was a test of $161.75. Got short after price failed to challenge the level again. I was very conflicted at 12:30 over wether to hold out for more momentum (there was only half an hour left) or get out at the previously respected support level. Got a second chance and got out at support on the second test.

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 bijeremiad 
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Did not trade September 20, 21, or 24; 5-day weekend taken off for family event.

I do need to develop a method to review missed days. Tape? Sim replay? or just chart reviews?

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  #152 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 4 losers. Net -$48.

Trade 1 was a bounce off the EMA21. Maybe could have made a few more pennies, but trade went about as expected for how price played out.

Trade 2 was looking for a pullback to the point where the down trend would continue off of the prior lower high. But when I saw price bounce off te EMA21 I thought I might have a complex correction, which was not valid since the recent low and broken the prior low, but price had also bounced off of support from a prior day. I was worried I had shorted into support, so I bailed early. Saved a few pennies.

Trade 3 was getting long off of the next bounce off the EMA21 based on concerns I had seen in the Trade 2 set up. Price was not going much further. I was also not respecting the dashed beige line, which was a multi-day trend line down, which was not far away.

Trade 4 was a bounce off the EMA21. It was close to support, which had been breached. Once price bounced off support at 10:27, I bailed out for a partial loss.

Trade 5 was a test of support at $158.50. Ended up jumping out at BE after price was lethargic for 15 minutes after the bounce. Would have been nice to be short for the break, but I was already 5 trades into the day. Shut down trading to void over trading, per rules.

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 bijeremiad 
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2 winners 3 losers. Net $116.

Trade 1 was a test of support from the prior day. To me it felt countertrend, so I was defensive/quick with my exit. Turns out it was the best trade of the day and could have run... I bailed on the first retrace.

Trade 2 was a test of prior day's resistance. I was probably giving too much heed to the multiday downward trend represented by the beige dash line. Was stopped out in less than 3 min.

Trade 3 was a little more reasonable test of both prior day's resistance and the trend line from the last few days. I thought I had something at 8:30, but price came back quick just 9 minutes later. Exited at BE after taking heat twice.

Trade 4 was nice and patient. Waited for the retrace to the EMA21. Price went sideways but never took much heat. Price finally popped and a trailing stop was taken out for the best trade of the day.

Trade 5 was a bit of a jump. I was surprised how quickly price pushed off the EMA21 on lots of volume. So I got short. I was stopped out 3 minutes later.

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 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 3 losers. Net $226.

Trade 1 was based on a triangle. I was biased by the small gap up, thinking buyers would support $159.25. There was 1 trade of 100 shares below my stop which I ignored as price quickly went back up. The bid went fishing below my stop throughout the trade, but never printed after that, until it broke. Stopped out.

Trade 2 was anticipating the upward channel that had been established from prior days, but the push up was on so little volume, only a hand full of trades, so I jumped out at BE.

Trade 3 was a little closer to the trendline from prior days. I also saw a headline cross about Spain's budget being better than expected and the S&P jumped, so I pulled the trigger. The lag was a few minutes, but offers kept getting lifted. A large bid chased a small offer all the way up . I had thought about getting out at $1 profit for 5R, as price was approaching resistance from the prior day. I held through the second pullback. The next push up was the largest yet. I got nervous about a spike, as price traded through my first-drawn trendline I bailed out. I should have traded off my usual trading stop. I left 3R on the table due to jitters. I should remember that in strong uptrends, price will lose momentum over time and break various trendlines that have to be reset to flatter lines. My plan was to jump back in on a retrace to the EMA21, but it never made it back. I had no other plan to get back in.

Trade 4 was a pullback to the EMA21. Gave up at BE after half an hour and not far from the market close.

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 bijeremiad 
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2 winners, 3 losers. Net $182.

Trade 1 was a failed breakout below a recent multi-day low at around $157.20. Price had been weak for the first hour of trading, selling off almost $3. But around support the offers started getting lifted in large chunks of 4-10 round lots. I got long just after price traded back above support. I was leery of trading countertrend, so I was defensive on my exit and was targeting only a small gain. Bailed on the first retrace for a small profit.

Trade 2 was a little late. I saw another run of offers being lifted in big chunks, so I got long again. Took a lot of heat. Had one chance to exit at BE and let it pass around 8:18. Price never cleared the recent swing high of $158.19 set at 7:03. I was seeing evidence that this may just be a pull back in a continuation of the downward trend. Once stopped out, I jumped into trade 3.

Trade 3 was a flip out of position a few pennies lower than my exit just moments earlier. Price was flat for 6 bars. At 8:51 there was a higher volume push down, and I moved my stop to BE. Was stopped out a minute later. This put me on watch to be long again - possibly trading a range.

Trade 4 was after price broke out above local resistance at 158.12 and 158.19. After the pull back I got long. Was patient with my stop. Ignored my target at $1 (5R in purple), but was thinking about getting out after price crossed above a recent swing point of the day at $159.19 (green dotted line). I was surpised at how light volume was on the move up. I was a little panicky when price was whipping around at 10:10. It would sell off on 3 or 4 round lots, then size would step in and lift offers. Then sell of on 3-4 sales. I sided with size. As price approached $159.40, which was a congestion of high of the day and top of my channel line, I ratcheted my stop tighter and was out at $159.30, $0.16 better than my initial target, and a good exit for the next hour.

The doji at 10:48 was interesting to watch on the tape. Price made a second push up and it just hit a cieling. A whole series of trades went off at $159.45 on the offer and didn't budge. Then quiet, then the sell off.

Trade 5 was supposed to be a failed break out. Should have waited for the second entry, but probably would have been caught at 12:18 without anywhere to really go. Full stop out, short trade. Should be reluctant for an end-of-day short after a strong move up.

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  #156 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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I changed the chart a little. In the past when i had a day that I didn't trade (like July 4), I would leave it blank, but it would count towards one of the 20 days in the trading "month". I went back and cut out all the blank days, so going forward the end of a week or month may not be on a Friday. This will also alter the statistics that I have reported for the month, but I will work on those later, hopefully this weekend.


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 Big Mike 
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Nice EC, good job.

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 bijeremiad 
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Below are my daily trading statistics for the last four months. When I excluded the "blank" days from my history, it ended up pushing two draw downs into the "August" month, weakening the stats there. Previously I was hitting about 5% or $1000 gross per month. Now each month shows a little more variance.


This was the best month so far, largely due to my losing days being smaller. I had fewer full-stop days (only 3 vs 7-8 in prior months) and some losing days were only a couple dollars. Not my best winning day month.

These are daily statistics. I am working on trade-level stats right now, which I have only kept for the last month or so, so I have to recreate a little history and cross check it vs the journal here.

One thing I will be curious to see is my long/short bias. This last month definitely benefitted from some long-biased trades. In fact my long/short mix has been around 58/42. In the attached graph, you can see how a long bias helps over the last month. However based on a preliminary sample, my overall mix is closer to 47/53, skewing short. Once I have the trade-level data finished, I will put up some more analysis. Also interesting from the attached chart that groups VFC's daily chart by my "months" is how the lower volatility periods are the lower profitability months for me (namely #1 and #3). You don't always get to choose the conditions you trade in.

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 rk142 
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Hey,

Just found your journal. Congrats on hanging in for the long haul, and for stringing together winning months. I know the game never really ends, but it sure looks like you're on your way.

best,
RK

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 bijeremiad 
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4 winners, 1 loser. $384 net; 3rd best day on record. 4th consecutive positive day.

Trade 1 was a trap. I walked straight into it. The trade was far a way from the EMA21. I entered on the break above the high of the previous bar and was taken down quickly, as deserved.

Trade 2 was the trade I should have waited for. Nice pullback to the EMA21. I was a little concerned at 7:45a when price failed a second time to push higher, leaving two lower highs (albeit very close together). At 7:57a when price failed to push higher again, the offers went fishing higher but nothing got hit. So I sat inside the offer with a limit sell and got out close to the purple trend line drawn off the previous highs.

Trade 3 was a breakout of a prior channel from the day before and a first pullback after breaking through $160 support from prior days. Pretty even push down for an hour, then a quick spike up came to take me out at where I trailed my stop.

Trade 4 was surprisingly close to my last trade. Price had formed a pullback to the EMA21. I didn't want to miss another move down. Was surprised how fast that next bar moved. I thought about getting out on the target of the last trade, since this trade was just a continuation, but momentum was strong that first bar. Even stayed in past my target for this trade (small mistake in hindsight). Price dragged along $158 for 15 min, then started moving up. I bailed on the break of a channel.

Trade 5 was taken after two high-volume pushes down that failed to challenge $158 again. Got long the next bar. Had a good run up. I got nervous about a reversal after price bounced off recent resistance at $159. Given how strong the move up was, I should have been more patient for a complex correction, but probably only would have gotten $0.10 better.

I thought about shorting at 11:45, but I had filled my five trades for the day. Would have been a mediocre trade.

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 Big Mike 
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Keep up the good work!

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 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 3 losers. Net -$31. What should follow a record day but a losing day plagued by overconfidence.

Trade 1 was a pullback to the EMA21. Patiently trailed. Stopped out as planned can't complain. Saw a pattern of resistance at $160 both times price approached, which I noted.

Trade 2 waited for price to cross below the EMA21. Got short. After the second failed push down, I moved to BE. Got out there.

Trade 3 was where I needed to be. Got in after price closed above the EMA21. But got chopped out of my trade. This is where I lost it.

Trade 4 I flipped around in short order to catch the decline after seeing a lower high at 9:24a. Got stopped out in 6 minutes. So with two full losing trades I stop for the day.

But I kept placing purple boxes where I would have traded if I stayed in. FOUR SHORTS, all countertrend, all runover by the market shortly after placed. Ugh. Glad I was off for the day.

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 bijeremiad 
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2 winners, 3 losers. Net $12.

Trade 1 trading a pullback. Given the second lower high put in at 7:45, should have been defensive, but went out at full stop rather than BE.

Trade 2 trade off channel from yesterday. Got a good push up. Even moved my stop to lock in profit. But when price came to my stop, I held for break even to see if I could get another push off the channel bottom. The highish volume down bars at 8:15 and 8:45 should have said individually and screamed collectively that this was not going higher.

Trade 3 was after the high volume reversal just after 9:00a. I should have gotten in between 9 and 9:15, but I got the second pullback. Got out at BE.

Trade 4 was the first pullback after a breakdown at $161. Not a great push down, got stopped out had to jump in quick to catch Trade 5.

I got pulled into Trade 5 based on how fast price traded off the EMA21. It traded back up close to my stop just about as fast. But didn't get stopped out. Traded my exit much more like a trading range day that it was.

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 bijeremiad 
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2 losers, net $-80.

Got WAY too concerned about fading a strong move up. Took two trades back to back. Took me out for the day. Just when you think you are progressing, you have a day where you show yourself otherwise.

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 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 2 losers. Net $40.

Very thin volume for most of the day. Not a great day to trade. Even when high volume came in, it came in thousands of trades in seconds (like at 11:30a). Very tough to gauge and follow.

Trade 1 was "good" losing trade. Gap up on open, waited for pullback to EMA21. Would take it again.

Got luck on my exit on 2. Zero liquidity - very gappy.

Got trapped in trade 3. Be patient for a second entry...

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 bijeremiad 
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Here is the equity curve, as of 10/5. Basically this week I made $384 on Monday, and managed to only bleed $59 of it back into the markets. Success, as only a trader could call it...


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 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 2 losers. Net -$19.

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 bijeremiad 
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2 losers. -$80.

Tough day to trade. Thin volume, wide swings, basically all within a $1 range - tough to get $0.50-$1.00 swings out of a range like that...

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 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 2 losers. Net $24.

Another no volume $1 range day with a downward drift. I need to be careful what I take as a "high volume bar" on days like this. "Normally" a 10k volume bar on the 3min chart suggests something is happening, but on a day like today a 1000 bar stands out like a tree on the Texas plains. Can't use that as a signal.

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 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 3 losers. $60 net.

Squeezed blood from another $1 range day (after 7am).

So this week I have bled -$15 to add to my loss of -$59 from the prior 4 days. So not a pure draw down and not nearly as deep as draw downs past, but the days have felt futile. I remember thinking that if I were thinking about increasing my size, I would want to do it after a run like this. Big day has to be coming.

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 iamcereal 
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1 winner, 3 losers. $60 net.

Magic of money management.Keep it up!-)

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 bijeremiad 
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@iamcereal, perhaps better said 1 winner, 2 scratches, 1 loser. I just lump all the scratches together for simplicity. probably need to change that...

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 bijeremiad 
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2 winners, 2 scratch. Net $459, third best day on record. 7th consecutive week of positive returns.

Trade 1 After a double top and a lower high, I thought I had a good short, but price failed to push through $161 (for the second time). Should have paid attention. Stopped at BE.

Trade 2 took a pullback to the EMA21. Had a great run. But then lost quite a bit on the retrace from $162.50 down to below $162, adverse move of $100, which shook me a little, but held my stop and did not panic. But once price was not looking strong after the push up at 9:15a, I bailed. Fortunately I had a plan to get back in if I saw a complex correction, which I did at 9:27.

Jumped back in for trade 3. Run up was pretty easy to manage. But toward the end the "how much longer can this run go" started pounding in my head. I had two lines marked, green at $164, resistance from many days earlier and orange at $164.35, the 52-week high. I bailed on a strong push up to $164, and again planned to get in if it broke out above $164.

Trade 4 was getting back in. When price pushed higher, I couldn't believe it. Fortunately that disbelief was met with a "hold your nose and buy it" rather than the more destructive "fade this insanity." However when price pushed through the 52-week high, I thought we had more legs. I thought briefly about bailing and taking a quick $60. Instead I watched price retrace, and I got out at BE.

I thought about 1 more long at 12:30, but was pretty content with the day. Held off...

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 bijeremiad 
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Columbus day threw my trading week off, which now ends on Monday. Interesting last two weeks. Basically 8 days of treading water and then two strong days.


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 bijeremiad 
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3 winners, 1 scratch, 1 loser. Net $377

Trade 1 was a little earlier than usual, but we were dealing with a 52-week high, so when price pushed above, pulled back, and started moving up again, I did not want to miss it. Great run. I almost bailed early twice. But after a $3+ run up ( I was only long for $2.50 of it), I jumped after another unexpected push up started to sell off.

Trade 2 was a scalp that I thought about taking at the EMA21. Ended holding it for too long.

Trade 3 was a complex pullback.

Trade 4 was a test of the high of the day.

Trade 5 was a test of a channel bottom - was just a little early.

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 bijeremiad 
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Two losers. -$80.

I really though we were going to have a pullback off the strong rally above the 52-week high. Was looking for shorts and took a couple lower highs to justify it. If I am trading with the trend, why am I looking for shorts just as the stock breaches new highs on the daily charts?

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 bijeremiad 
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1 scratch, 3 losers. Net -$99.

Broke a rule for the first time in a long time. Did not stop trading after 2 losses. Cost me a little. Not a huge set back becuase I still honored the stop. Kicker is that my broken-rule trade was a flipper from short to long. Not in the best mental state today as evidenced by 1) fighting a range of consolidation, 2) overtrading, 3) flipping a position, 4) breaking a rule to try to recover the day's losses. All bad.

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 bijeremiad 
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3 winners, 1 scratch, 1 loser. +$86.

Finally got my down day. Had a hard time staying in. Got shaken out on market action. Was beaten up over the last two days looking for a short after trends up on the daily chart, so I was skittish about being short a reversal. Played more defensively. Ok day.

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 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 2 losers. Net -$21. Lost all my markings on the chart. No comments.

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 bijeremiad 
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My week ends on Mondays now. It was another week of big first day and bleed as little of it away during the rest of the week.


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 bijeremiad 
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3 winners, 2 losers. Net $440. 4th best day on record. Could have been an all-time day if I wasn't so busy shorting into prior-day resistance.

Trade 1 Opened down and traded off the next bonce of the EMA21. Was watching the tape and the puttering out was pretty apparent. Then I bailed out after close to a $2 run down. I did have a plan to get back in, which led to trade 2.

Trade 2 was more a continuation of Trade 1 on the breakdown and continuation of trend. I got out shortly after entry as price bounced off resistance, and I had a plan to get back in if price pushed down yet again.

Trade 3 was looking for even more continuation, but resistance held firm. Stopped out.

Trade 4 was after missing the bounce at 8:15. Looking for a breakout. No luck.

Trade 5 was after I saw two failed pushes down past $154.50. Decided to get long for a failed break out (of which I was part of the failed breakout in Trade 4).

Stopped after 5 trades. Might have been able to trade the channel for the last 3 hours of the day, but focused on other things.

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 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 1 scratch, 2 losers. Net $19.

Avoided losing money on a failed break out at the beginning of the day, and got long shortly after. Misread the stall at $155.50. Would have been a great day if my runner had been with 200 shares, but the ATR5 was too high, might have gotten shaken out with a $0.20 stop rather than a $0.40. Ok day.

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 bijeremiad 
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3 winners, 1 scratch, 1 loser. Net $185.

Trade 1 was an bounce off the EMA21. Was a little defensive with the stop. Thinking maybe range day, but I had also had recent success with failed breakouts, so i was looking for those too.

Trade 2 was thinking I had seen the low for the day and was respecting a run up. But was suspicious, as it was a countertrend day. Scratched out.

Trade 3 was flipping off the failed push higher. Traded like a range day, had a good exit.

Trade 4 was a little tight on the stop, looking at a double bottom, but vol kicked in and I was stopped out. That's ok, would take the trade again.

Caught Trade 5 after waiting through a consolidation. Small gain. Jumped out after price failed to push through $156, and I saw a lower high.

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 bijeremiad 
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2 losers. Net -$80. Two full stop losses. Was out of the trading day in about 8 minutes total. I thought I had a double bottom and a failed break out on a key level of $155. Got long and stopped out in about 60 seconds. Then price made another push up. Don't know why I was so determined to catch it, but tried again, and was stopped out.

Frustrating because it could have been such a great day with the simple trend down from 8:45a to 9:45a, and the more complex upward trend from 10:15a to the close.

It has been 6 trading days since my last full stop day, so at least it is good to see them space out a little more.

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 bijeremiad 
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No trades in observation of Hurricane Sandy.

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 bijeremiad 
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Markets still closed. Has been a little bizarre to not be checking the markets every so often to see what price is doing. Every once in a while I would look thinking "if I see consolidation the I will wait, but if price reaches the high of the day..." and then remember that nothing was happening.

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 bijeremiad 
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5 winners. $463, 3rd best day on record.

Trade 1 best run of the day. Was thinking of a long on the pull back to EMA21 given the strength of VFC on the open, but price never confirmed. So eventually shorted after two failed pushes up. Got out after extended push and approach of resistance area from last day of trading.

Trade 2 was looking for a complex correction. Traded exit like a range day, which helped.

Trade 3 was weak in retrospect. Too close to support for the day. Barely positive trade.

Trade 4 was trading the range for the day. Jumped out at $155.90, but had a plan to get back in if price went above $156.

Trade 5 was really a continuation of Trade 4, wasn't looking for much out of this trade bailed shortly after price saw first signs of hitting resistance.

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 bijeremiad 
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The close of the market pushed my trading week to finish today. Best week on record. In fact I gained more this week than my whole first month 4 months ago. Also this was the ninth consecutive week of positive performance. Today also marks the end of a trading month (20 trading days), but I will put those numbers up in a separate post.


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 DarkPoolTrading 
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@bijeremiad your journal and progress has been inspirational to say the least. Well done on your performance!

If you dont mind, I have a couple questions for you:
  • From observing your trades you seem to give price very little room to move against you. You cut your losers extremely quickly if they dont behave as you want. Would you agree with that observation?
  • Do you use any orderflow analysis to complement your price action observations? Or is it purely S/R based?
  • Do you always trade All In All Out. What is your thinking for not trading All In Scale Out?

Thanks, and keep up the good work!

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 bijeremiad 
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DarkPoolTrading View Post
  • From observing your trades you seem to give price very little room to move against you. You cut your losers extremely quickly if they dont behave as you want. Would you agree with that observation?
  • Do you use any orderflow analysis to complement your price action observations? Or is it purely S/R based?
  • Do you always trade All In All Out. What is your thinking for not trading All In Scale Out?

@ DarkPoolTrading, I set my stops based on the exponential moving average of VFC for the last 5 bars (15 minutes). If the ATR5 is >$0.20 then I set a 40-cent stop. If the ATR is < $0.20 then I set a 20-cent stop. If the ATR is > $0.40 then I think long and hard about taking on that kind of volatility. Somtimes if the ATR 5 is just a little above $0.20, and I like the context, I will try to squeeze in a 20-cent stop because I make twice as much. The 20-cent stops feel tight when I trade becuase the bid/ask spread averages around$0.10. So if I hit the bid for a short, and the next trader hits the offer, I am half way to my stop. But if I think back to my ES days, a 20-cent stop on VFC is about equivalent to a 1.75-point or 7-tick stop on ES, which is tight but not unreasonable (or on oil a $0.12 stop).

But none of this answers your question. On average I am in a losing trade for about 15 minutes, a scratch trade 30 minutes, a winning trade 1 hour. So relatively speaking, I do cut my losers sooner. Perhaps better said, my stops cut me short. But I do not have a time-out rule. I have been meaning to look at my individual trades to gain better insight into what to do about that, but nothing concrete right now. My longest time in a losing trade is 48 minutes, my longest scratch trade is over 2 hours. Is that too long to be in those trades? Probably, but I haven't taken time to hammer out what I should do yet.

I do use order flow to a certain extent. I will include an example in my day's write up later today. I don't watch T&S, I very rarely watch level 2, but I almost always have a 1-tick chart that plots the last 1000 bids, offers, or trades. I have started to pay more attention to it lately, and I unscientifically attribute improved results over the last two months to trying to read the tape. Mostly I use S/R to decide when to start looking at the ticks. But I have found that i can get sucked into watching the ticks too closely and take lots of false signals from them (same problem I have watching any lower-time-frame chart).

I trade all-in/all out. The reasons are varied, but I can't say that my decision is the result of a careful analysis. It's because
1) money management - I only trade 100 shares with a 40-cent stop or 200 shares with a 20-cent stop. No point really in scaling out of 100 shares.

2) psychology - If I catch a runner, I am almost ALWAYS surprised at how far it goes. Occasionally, yes, I get $0.50 into a trade and it trades back for a scratch and mope about the $100 I gave up. For me I have found the lost tail of a 2R trade that runs past my exit for another 4R weighs on me mentally more than a trade that runs 1.5R in my favor and then retraces for a scratch. This is one of those things that there is "no right or wrong working, just find what works for you, do it consistently". I am working on an MFE/MAE analysis that will help me assess how to optimize that.

3) profits - I hope to have the numbers to prove this soon, but my guess is most of my PNL comes from 200-lot trades. I need those to run as much as they can. We'll see.

4) liquidity on paper - because I am paper trading its really tough for me to guess what my fills would be. The level 2 stack on VFC does not look like any futures contract. I would guestimate that 90% of the day you have 100 bid 100 offered. And 90% of the trades happen in round lots of 100. Yes you have moments when you can see 10,000 shares cross in 5 seconds, but I can never see those coming on level 2. So if I wanted to up my size to 1000 shares It would be really tough and manually intensive to figure out what my fills would look like if I tried to exit a long on the offer side. For 1 or 2 lots, I know I can punch through at any time, for more than that, it's tough to tell until you submit a real order.

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 bijeremiad 
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I have accumulated another 20 trading days of data. It has been a good month. Market gave me some higher vol days. Did better catching some reversals. Although I was suprised how well the month came out for what it felt like. Last week was extraordinary, but there was also that 8-trading-day (almost two calendar weeks) span where I pretty much just treading water - beats losing, but doesn't feel much better.



I was surprised to see a %win days of 60%. That was a mix of very small days, and very big days. Dollars lost crept up vs last month. That was in part driven by 5 full-stop days vs 3 last month, which accounts for $160 of the $130 difference. The average $ on a win day was the big driver. I had 5 days over $350 vs 0, 1, 2, 0 in months 1-4, respectively. So month 4 was my best month at that point and I had 0 days greater than $350 vs this month with 5 days. Month 4 "felt" better going through it - more consistent even though the days were smaller. This month was more a desert of confidence punctuated with oases of success.

Full stop days. Out of curiosity, I went back and looked at my five full-stop days:
10/26 - revenge trading nonsense, stopped out in 8 minutes.
10/18 - 4 trades in 1 hour, fighting the chop, broke my max daily loss of -$80.
10/17 - 2 trades in 1 hour, fighting the trend, but not irrationally so - the most legitimate full-stop day of the 5
10/10 - Not great trades, but fairly spaced.
10/04 - Stopped out on 2 trades in 15 minutes fighting a strong run up.

So two days were "acceptable" much to be improved, but there will be days like that. But the three days where I was either 1) trading rapid, consecutive counter-trend trades on 10/4 and 10/26 or 2) consecutive scratch trades followed by losing trades in a period of consolidation on 10/18. And what is worse 4 of those 5 days had great set ups later in the day. Ugh.

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 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 1 loser. Net $60.

Was tied up in meetings and training for most of today. Not a great day for my style of trading. Probably better that I missed most of it.

@DarkPoolTrading asked if I use order flow analysis in my trading. Sometimes I do. Trade 1 is an example.


The first 6 minutes saw a crazy $4 spike in price. I was not watching at the time, but came in around 9:00a. I saw the triangle forming from 7:45a following lower highs, and support around $159.60. I thought about getting long at around 9:18a, but figured I would rather be on the short side if I was going to try playing the channel.

The tick chart that I watch begins at 9:47:36am. On the 3-min bar chart, price breaks $159.60 support, possibly suggesting weakness in the level and continued strength from the sellers who have been pushing price lower since 7:45am. Then price retraces from 9:48am to 10:00am. It looked like a weak pullback - one I would want to short when it was done.


Here was my thinking:

1. The bounce began like they all do, with offers being lifted. Always tough for me to tell whether this is a trader buying the support to initiate a scalp, or a short closing out a trade, or a higher time frame doing something else. But we see about 1200 shares trade in two bursts at 9:50:30 and the second a few seconds later.

The next thing that happens is the offer "goes fishing" for stops. The bid holds its level for a minute or two, and then finally cedes and moves up with the offer - probably a short trying to get out at a more reasonable price. An offer gets lifted here and there, but when it happens it is a single lot (not more aggressive bursts) and as soon as the offer is lifted, the offer goes fishing higher. Meanwhile the bids that are getting hit are in more aggressive bursts and the bid holds for a while even drops a little in price like an algo is "sweeping" a penny lower to take out the thin stack below. This could suggest that this pullback is less driven by buyers pushing and more by weak shorts getting squeezed (which is often me) and the sellers reloading on the way up.

Back on the 3-minute bar chart, price has come back to $160, a resistance level from a prior-day high and close to a local high at 9:30a. I am interested to see how order flow behaves here. Again trades on the offer are light. Trades at the bid are larger. The offer is drifting lower, trades at the offer are happening at lower prices, and are followed by bursts of bids being hit.

I am short at $159.86 at 10:01:22. Another burst of shorts follow at $159.84, one last offer is lifted at $159.91. Then the offer drops to $159.84 followed by another burst of shorts on the bid. After 10:02:19, the bids dry up. Market makers are not interested in buying, but the offer (someone happy to sell) remained very active. I am feeling content with my short at this point, even though only 1 trade happens in two minutes.

Some offers start to get lifted around $159.60, but also followed by bids hit, and the offer is not running up. The bounce is 6 minutes brief, and price is headed down again, led by lower offers. I move my stop to $159.62.

I am not looking for a long trend on this trade, it was a channel bet and we are below that channel. I look left to see possible intraday support at $159.20, which is close at the purple line on the 3-minute chart. When I see the offer ticking up from $159.30 to $159.40 I wonder about exiting. When I see the 800 share trade on the offer I decide i want out at $153.36 for 2.5R. Some bids get hit at $159.33/5, and I assume I am out. I figure if the purple support line breaks I can get back in.

I got back in for Trade 2. I felt really smart for 60 seconds. It was a trap. Stopped out.

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  #194 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
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1 winner, 1 scratch, 1 loser. Net $154.

Trade 1 initiated on a pullback to a trend line. Only in for 3-4 bars. Stopped out.

Trade 2 was after a close below the EMA21. Dropped stop after taking heat. 1 more push down, and moved stop to break even. Stopped at BE.

Trade 3 was after a 3rd lower high. Got out around $158.50, which was near LOD and just below an inter-day trendline from earlier. Another 2.5R was available, but I would have likely been shaken out before getting there.

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 bijeremiad 
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2 winners, 2 scratches, 1 loser. Net -$18. If I honor my stop losses for the rest of the week, I know I will end positive, which will be the 10th consecutive week of gains.

Lots of trading for running in place. First trade was looking for a trend down. But hit resistance a couple times. By the second trade I was more defensive and looking for a range bound day. Only wish I had been more attentive to a possible reversal/breakout at around 10:45a.

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 bijeremiad 
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2 losers, net -$80.

Full stop day. Trade 1 put a little too much faith in a trend line from the previous day. I got long on a limit order, thinking I had caught the bounce. Was taken out pretty quickly.

Trade 2 was a little more valid set up, with a bounce off the EMA21.

If I still had powder left, I would have caught a nice runner at 8:09 where the purple box is.

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 bijeremiad 
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2 winners, 1 loser. Net $133.

Trade 1 was a pullback, Trade 2 was a breakout/continuation of the previous trade. Would have been nice to catch one of those with a 2-lot, but the ATR5 was too high.

Frustrating part of today was that I had my bear claws on and refused to see the $2.50 trend up. I was looking for another short entry the whole day. What a waste. I had my downward channels drawn and was waiting for the correction or complex correction, but two channels broken and the EMA21, and I still refuse to see the trend up. Ugh.

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 bijeremiad 
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Posts: 410 since Jul 2011
Thanks: 284 given, 338 received

No remarkable days this week, but a solid week with 1.25% gross return.


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  #199 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
San Francisco, CA
 
Experience: Beginner
Platform: IB
Trading: Stocks
 
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Posts: 410 since Jul 2011
Thanks: 284 given, 338 received

2 losers, -$80.

Nice easy trend down day with barely a $0.50 pull back. And all of my tape reading abilities get me is two lousy longs. Even though they were blatantly countertrend I could have at least been defensive.

I suspect the last few days I was looking for trend down and got a reversal. So I was looking for reversal and got a trend down. Sigh.

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  #200 (permalink)
 bijeremiad 
San Francisco, CA
 
Experience: Beginner
Platform: IB
Trading: Stocks
 
bijeremiad's Avatar
 
Posts: 410 since Jul 2011
Thanks: 284 given, 338 received

1 scratch, 2 losers. -$80 net.

Trades 1 and 2 had the makings of an upward trend. At least I was defensive on trade 1 when price hit resistance at $154.60. Trade2 never had the chance.

Trade 3 I tried to squeeze a 200 lot when the ATR5 suggested 100. Had I used the larger stop, I would have survived the pullback (show with the purple box). But probably would have broke even later.

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