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The Way of the AttitudeTrader
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The Way of the AttitudeTrader

  #121 (permalink)
Attitude is everything.
Dallas, TX, USA
 
Futures Experience: Intermediate
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Training Day 45

Mission Plan: 2013.03.25.255-265
Theater of Operation: Mike Six Echo Mike Three

Pre-Mission SitRep
06:45 Starting pre-open prep...Getting head sterile.
Barrage of reports due out this morning.
M6E coiled up in a tight range overnight.
07:20 Big spike up right on the open of RTH session.

Sortie #259
08:03 Short. 2 ticks negative slippage (per contract) on entry.
08:08 Price came within 1 tick of T1.
08:13 No Joy. -20 ticks.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #260
08:20 Short.
08:32 Lot 1 target reached. +9 ticks (1 tick negative slippage).
08:45 Stop moved to BE after 15 ticks MFE on Lot 2.
08:57 Per my rules I'm out at market 3 minutes before an important report release.
08:57 Out MKT +5 ticks.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

SitRep
09:08 The effect of the Consumer Confidence and New Homes Sales reports was negligible. What it did do though is get me out with +5 ticks profit because my BE stop was hit shortly afterward. Price is still in the middle of the overnight range, so probably best to just stand aside for now.

Sortie #261
09:42 Long. 1 tick negative slippage (per contract) on entry. 6E didn't trade at this entry price, but M6E did (apparently) so I was filled 1 tick below my actual order price.
Wow. I got hammered.
09:43 No Joy. -24 ticks (2 ticks negative slippage per contract on exit).
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #262
09:45 Short. 1 tick negative slippage (per contract) on entry.
09:45 Lot 1 target reached. +10 ticks.
09:50 No Joy on Lot 2. -10 ticks.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #263
10:11 Long.
10:13 No Joy. -22 ticks. 1 tick negative slippage (per contract) on exit.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #264
11:08 Short.
11:14 Lot 1 target reached. +11 ticks. 1 tick positive slippage.
13:50 Cutoff time for open positions (10 minutes until RTH close). MKT -0 ticks.
I was in this last trade for 2 hours and 40 minutes.

Mission complete. RTB for AAR.
Finished for the day.

AAR
  • Objective: Follow mission plan with extreme prejudice.
    -
  • Outcome: My trades weren't very smart (in hindsight of course), but I'll learn from today and adjust where I attempt entries based on these experiences.
    -
  • Observations: "Expected" sideways/ranging market today after yesterday's big move day.
    -
    A losing day like this makes M6E "real" enough for me. It may be a lot smaller than 6E, but it's still big enough to make a difference in my account.
    -
    As I mentioned in the last Weekend Review and Stats post, I expected my rules to evolve quickly at the beginning of this phase and new market, and that is just what's happening. I've already developed some very specific rules/guidelines to start implementing tomorrow. I set the first sample size to 10 trades for this very reason, but I forgot to mention that here. You can tell by the last few numbers in my Mission Plan number (e.g., 255-265) what trades are included in the current sample size. I'm only one trade away from that today, so I'm going to go ahead and make my changes for tomorrow's trading.
    -
    The development of these rules will follow a very familiar theme: it is all about making rules that are easily repeated and therefore very conducive to consistency. They are not rules that are backtested or chosen because they are believed to be optimal for generating profits. The only thing that is important is that they are very clear and repeatable - period.
    -
    Whether they're "good" or not will be determined via the stats that come as a result of being consistent.

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"Is it hard? Not if you have the right attitude. It's having the right attitude that's hard." - Robert Pirsig
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  #122 (permalink)
Attitude is everything.
Dallas, TX, USA
 
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Training Day 46

Mission Plan: 2013.03.27.265-275
Theater of Operation: Mike Six Echo Mike Three

Pre-Mission Prep
06:40 Starting pre-mission prep...Getting mind right...Going through checklist...

Sortie #265
06:41 Short. With trend.
06:47 Nervous. I don't really like the way this looks, but I now have very clear rules so I'm back to getting used to following a specific plan and just letting it work out how it will.
07:04 Lot 1 target reached. +11 ticks. 1 tick positive slippage on exit.
07:12 Stop moved to BE after 15 ticks MFE on Lot 2.
07:15 Lot 2 stopped out at BE. -0 ticks.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #266
07:48 Short. 1 tick negative slippage (per contract) on entry.
Nervous about this one too because I don't think it's a very strong setup, but I'm letting my rules do my thinking for me today.
08:14 Lot 1 target reached. +11 ticks. 1 tick positive slippage on exit.
08:30 Stop moved to BE after 15 ticks MFE on Lot 2.
08:34 Lot 2 target reached. +21 ticks. 1 tick positive slippage on exit.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

****!
08:51 Pissed. Waited for my entry, canceled the order I already had in, clicked to place the new order, but by the time I had done that the DOM wouldn't accept my new order because price had already moved past it. ****!

Over it
08:53 Ok, I'm over it. Pending Home Sales is in 7 minutes and I was so focused on entering this trade, that I didn't realize I was breaking my rule about entering a position within 10 minutes of an important report (even though the alarm on my iPhone was screaming at me!).

SitRep
09:01 I've drawn boundaries for what may be a forming range.
On the missed trade above, price spiked down to hit my T1 level, but didn't exceed it to hit my MIT order, so I would still be in it.

Sortie #267
09:06 Short.
Not comfortable about this trade either. I think we may be in a range, but it's not clear enough yet for me to switch into range mode.
09:12 Lot 1 target reached. +10 ticks.
Price came within 1 tick of the MFE needed to move Lot 2 stop to BE.

SitRep
09:16 This is the third test of the 07:10 low and the second long lower tail. If this doesn't break the last bar low (which is LOD), then we're in a range and I'll be switching to range mode. However, if this is not a range, there may be a trap setting up here for bulls who are seeing this as a bottom.
09:25 Bulls are long now. If price breaks below the last M5 bar, there could be a strong push down as the bulls puke out.
09:34 Current M5 bar just broke below prior bar low. This will tell me if we're in a range or not by whether price continues down or creates a bear trap.
09:36 There it is. I'm in range mode now. Still in my short position though and will stay in it until I'm stopped out or by some miracle my Lot 2 target is reached.

Sortie #267 complete
10:08 No Joy on Lot 2. -11 ticks. 1 tick negative slippage.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

SitRep
10:13 Ranging market now. I'll be following my range mode rules until the range is broken.

Sortie #268
11:21 Short. 1 tick negative slippage (per contract) on entry.
11:23 6E has yet to trade at my entry price - only M6E did I guess.
11:51 T1 level reached but not exceeded to hit my MIT order.
12:02 Lot 1 target reached. +10 ticks.
12:06 Stop moved to BE after 15 ticks MFE on Lot 2.
12:25 Lot 2 stopped out at BE. -1 tick. 1 tick negative slippage.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Mission complete. RTB for AAR.
13:30 New entry cut-off time. Finished for the day.

AAR
  • Objective: Follow mission plan with extreme prejudice.
    -
  • Outcome: Followed mission plan with only one minor hiccup (missed entry inside of "no report zone" above). Made for a relatively boring, but profitable day.
    -
  • Observations: I had to change my mentality somewhat at the beginning of the session, because I'm back into "follow the rules" mode today (as discussed yesterday), rather than the very loose discretionary mode I've been in for the past few sessions as I developed my rules.
    -
    I can see and feel the difference between those two ways of trading more clearly now than ever before. With the "follow the rules" mode, I'm having to let go of the responsibility for the outcome of the trade and that can be a little difficult. I'm having to keep reminding myself that my only responsibility is to follow the specific rules I have written in my plan.

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"Is it hard? Not if you have the right attitude. It's having the right attitude that's hard." - Robert Pirsig
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  #123 (permalink)
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AttitudeTrader View Post
I can see and feel the difference between those two ways of trading more clearly now than ever before. With the "follow the rules" mode, I'm having to let go of the responsibility for the outcome of the trade and that can be a little difficult. I'm having to keep reminding myself that my only responsibility is to follow the specific rules I have written in my plan.


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  #124 (permalink)
Attitude is everything.
Dallas, TX, USA
 
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Training Day 47

Mission Plan: 2013.03.27.265-275
Theater of Operation: Mike Six Echo Mike Three

Pre-Mission Prep
06:15 Starting pre-mission prep...Getting mind right...Going through checklist...
Unemployment Claims report at 07:30.
Chicago PMI at 08:45.

SitRep
06:39 Six Echo has created a large 60-tick range. I'm in range mode.

Sortie #269
06:56 Short Fade. 1 tick negative slippage (per contract) on entry.
07:04 No Joy. -22 ticks. 1 tick negative slippage (per contract) on exit.
Feeling some anxiety about this stop.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #270
07:11 Short Fade.
07:17 Lot 1 target reached. +10 ticks.
07:28 US Unemployment Claims report in 2 Mikes. Price is still at 10 ticks MFE, so moved stop to BE rather than exiting position.
07:30 Some price agitation on report release. I need to follow my rules which say to exit 3 minutes prior to a high-impact report.
07:35 Stop remains at BE after 15 ticks MFE on Lot 2.
07:57 Lot 2 target reached. +19 ticks. 1 tick negative slippage.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

SitRep
08:35 I have a new setup forming, but I can't take it because of the Chicago PMI report due out in 10 minutes.

SitRep
08:56 Six Echo has broken out from the range. All orders canceled. I'm in trend mode now. Waiting for price to form up.
09:04 Would like to be in this move up, but I haven't had an entry according to my rules.

Sortie #271
09:20 Long Trend. 1 tick negative slippage (per contract) on entry.
09:50 No Joy. -22 ticks. 1 tick negative slippage (per contract) on exit.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #272
09:55 Long Trend. 1 tick negative slippage (per contract) on entry.
10:090 No Joy. -20 ticks.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #273
10:20 Long Trend. 1 tick negative slippage (per contract) on entry.
10:22 I had a very hard time taking this trade. I was ready to call it quits for the day even though it's not cut-off time yet. And I really don't like this one because it's after a pretty strong pullback. Understandable PFC, but you're following your rules, and that is the kind of behavior that will move you up the ranks! Stand strong!
10:23 Holy ****! Lot 1 target reached. +10 ticks.
10:24 Stop moved to BE after 15 ticks MFE on Lot 2.
10:33 Lot 2 target reached. +19 ticks. 1 tick negative slippage on exit.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

SitRep
10:40 Six Echo made a large spike up, which was nice for getting my profits on the last trade, but now I have to place new orders to long and I don't want to. You've just seen how important it is to remain consistent and follow the plan! If you'd quit before the last trade you would have been further down on the day, but more importantly you would be kicking yourself right now! Stick with the plan!

Sortie #274
10:46 Long Trend. 1 tick negative slippage (per contract) on entry. Also missed moving my entry order, so I'm in 1 tick higher than I should be.
Taking this trade regardless of how much I don't like the setup.
11:00 No Joy. -22 ticks. 1 tick negative slippage (per contract) on exit.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #275
11:20 Long Trend. 1 tick negative slippage (per contract) on entry.
11:30 Day before a holiday cut off time, so this will be my last trade for today and the week.
11:45 No Joy. -22 ticks. 1 tick negative slippage (per contract) on exit.

Mission complete. RTB for AAR.
11:47 New entry cut-off time reached. Finished for the day.

AAR
  • Objective: Follow mission plan with extreme prejudice.
    -
  • Outcome: One rule break today (didn't exit before a report like I should have). I had a report-related mistake yesterday too.
    -
  • Observations: I almost gave up after 2 losing trend trades in a row. From a P/L standpoint that would have been a better way to end the day, but I wouldn't have been following my rules, which is priority number one right now.
    -
    This wasn't a fun day of trading for sure.

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"Is it hard? Not if you have the right attitude. It's having the right attitude that's hard." - Robert Pirsig
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  #125 (permalink)
Attitude is everything.
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Weekend Review and Stats

A review of the week

Mid-week I was able to develop some more specific rules to work with. On Friday I ended another 10-trade sample size, so this weekend I'll be looking at some modifications to my mission plan.

M6E/6E moves in a very different way (in my eyes anyway) than ES, so it will still take some time to get a feel for it. I do however like it.

On completing my first week of trading M6E, I'm finding it beneficial in a number of ways.

Costs to do business

I was warned that commissions (the larger part of which, I believe, are the additional miscellaneous fees) make for a high cost-to-do-business in M6E. This makes it harder to make a profit in M6E than the full size (6E) contract.

And, as I was also warned, slippage in M6E is a very common occurrence. I've discovered that firsthand. I'm currently averaging about 1 tick of negative slippage on every trade in my sim/demo account.

What this all means to me though is that if I can trade this market profitably with real money, then it will be a fantastic "boot camp" for the larger, less costly, more liquid market that I can move into later.

Larger stops give me more room to work

Because of the much smaller per-tick value of M6E, I've been able to widen my stop so that it works with the market in a more appropriate way. In other words, rather than setting a stop that is too tight because I'm trying to only risk a certain percentage of my risk capital, I can now risk the percentage I want, but at the same time use a reasonable stop.

A look at the stats

A downtrending expectancy is not unexpected as I begin working with M6E and, more importantly, continue to work on improving my trading overall:

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I'm negative on my sim/demo account after 24 trades. By using a different trade management scheme I wouldn't be quite as far down (I discuss this below), and I'll be working on that over the weekend:

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My daily P/L chart is just ugly:

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A surprising revelation thanks to a friend and my stats

I started this exercise in consistency using 1 ES contract with the objective to move to multiple contracts and scaling out, which I did. I continued the multi-lot strategy on converting to the M6E contract.

I've considered this scale-out tactic to be superior to a one-lot strategy and I still do. However, at least for the way I'm trading right now, it appears that it isn't the best way for me work.

At the suggestion of a friend, I looked at my current results versus an all-in-all-out (AIAO) approach. I was quite surprised to find that for these first 24 M6E trades, my 2nd lot has nearly completely canceled out the profits from the 1st lot. In specific terms, using my current scale-out strategy, I stand at +3 gross ticks, but had I been using an AIAO strategy, with the same Lot 1 target, I would stand at +35 gross ticks - a significant difference.

This is a very small sample size to be looking at, so I went to my ES trade log where I have a larger (147 trades) sample size. Again, I was surprised to find that with the scale-out strategy, I finished at +62 gross ticks, but had I been using an AIAO strategy, with the same Lot 1 target, I would have finished at +81 gross ticks.

So, even though I think scaling out is probably a "better" way to manage a trade, my stats are giving me hard proof that, at least for the time being, an AIAO strategy is better for my way of trading.

This puts me in a similar state of mind as last week when I realized that "stepping down" to M6E was actually putting me in a better place with regard to my current capitalization, and shrinking the window of time before I'll be able to start working with real money.

Thanks to the consistent stats I've been keeping, I have again shrunk that time window because I see that an AIAO strategy is not "harming" me, and that means that I can trade as little as 1 contract per lot without fear that I'm handicapping myself.

I'll be implementing this AIAO approach next week and I'll see how it goes from there.

"Is it hard? Not if you have the right attitude. It's having the right attitude that's hard." - Robert Pirsig
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Last edited by AttitudeTrader; March 30th, 2013 at 11:49 PM.
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  #126 (permalink)
Attitude is everything.
Dallas, TX, USA
 
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Posts: 358 since Oct 2009
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Training Day 48

Mission Plan: 2013.04.01.276-286
Theater of Operation: Mike Six Echo Mike Three

Pre-Mission Prep
05:55 Starting pre-mission prep...Going through checklist...

Sortie #276
06:03 Long, Trend. 1 tick negative slippage (per contract) on entry.
06:29 No Joy. -9 ticks.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #277
06:38 Long, Trend.
06:29 No Joy. -9 ticks.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #278
06:38 Short, Trend.
I'm frustrated from the first 2 losing trades, and I realize that I just broke my entry trigger rule. I took this trade simply because it pulled back to an s/r line I was using, but I didn't wait for any sign that it might be turning back down.
06:29 No Joy. -9 ticks.
Breaking my rule cost me.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #279
08:28 Long, Trend. 2 ticks negative slippage on entry. 6E hasn't traded at this price but M6E filled me there.
08:41 Volume for 6E and M6E is very low, and I just discovered that today is a bank holiday for Great Britain, France, Italy and Germany.
08:57 Exited MKT prior to report. -4 ticks.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.
Price spiked in the direction of trade #279, but I can't be in a position during high-impact reports.

Sortie #280
09:22 Short, Fade. 1 tick negative slippage on entry.
10:10 No Joy. -10 ticks.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #281
10:15 Long, Fade.
10:28 No Joy. -9 ticks.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #282
10:48 Long, Fade.
11:19 No Joy. -10 ticks.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #283
11:50 Long, Fade.
13:56 Cutoff time for open positions (4 minutes until RTH close). MKT -3 ticks.

Mission complete. RTB for AAR.
Finished for the day.

AAR
  • Objective: Follow mission plan with extreme prejudice.
    -
  • Outcome: After two losing trades I was getting a bit frustrated and broke an entry trigger rule. Other than that I followed my rules.
    -
    The end of the day was even more frustrating because every single trade today was a loser. However, what is extremely interesting is that had I done the exact opposite on every trade, every single trade would have been a winner.
    -
    It almost makes me want to employ the George Costanza Principle.
    -
  • Observations: I've learned an enormous amount from this exercise, but I think I need to change the way I'm going about it now.
    -
    So far I've designed my rules so that I would be very active and take a lot of trades so that I can learn about execution, following my rules, etc. But I'm chopping myself up a lot in the minutiae of unimportant noise.
    -
    I think it's time for me to stand back a little and start taking entries that are geared toward larger moves rather than the mostly scalping methods I've been using up to now.
    -
    As a friend has told me before, it doesn't matter how good your discipline and money management is if you don't have an edge. I think it's time for me to start working on my edge.
    -
    I went through almost an entire sample size today, but even though I didn't quite finish all 10, I'm still going to be revising my strategy for tomorrow.
    -
    Phase 1 of this exercise was difficult, but it was pretty clear cut. Phase 2 is proving to be slippery, and I'm sure it will be far more difficult than Phase 1 was.
    -
    No chart for today.

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  #127 (permalink)
Elite Member
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Know expectency

hi,
I would know what is success probability based on backtesting.

Reason:
A system with 55% expectancy will fail
12 times consecutively (20% chances) Trade size 100 Trades.

This statistic might help me going without changing..

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  #128 (permalink)
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"It almost makes me want to employ the George Costanza Principle."

haha, nice reference bro.

Keep plugging away, and keep making yourself available to what the market is doing.

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  #129 (permalink)
DOM on the Range
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I've backtested the George Costanza principle and amazingly found I was able to lose money both ways...

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  #130 (permalink)
Attitude is everything.
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Training Day 49


Mission Plan: Under Development
Theaters of Operation: Mike Six Echo Mike Three, November Quebec Mike Three, Yankee Mike Mike Three.

Sortie #283
07:56 Short M6E.
Short after break and pullback/retest of 50% of YR. Current target is yesterday's RTH low.
Target modified to FE of last down-swing (Pink Fibs on chart).
08:25 target reached. +10 ticks.
08:40 MM of OR was a better target (Olive Fibs on chart).
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #284
09:15 Short NQ. 1 tick negative slippage on entry.
Short after test of yesterday's high and pullback below OR high. Target is OR low.
This wasn't a strong candle formation and the markets look strong, so I'm not liking this one very much.
09:35 A break of the 6th bar of the day would have been a better entry as price retested HOD on the 6th bar and had another long-ish upper tail and shorter body.
09:47 No Joy. -23 ticks.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #285
09:44 Long YM. 1 tick negative slippage on entry.
Long on break of Hammer after consolidation at ORH. Target is a few ticks below the MM of yesterday's range.
10:10 Price came within 3 ticks of my target and has pulled back pretty strongly creating a shooting star (10th bar) at the 14600 level. Target is moved to HOD.
10:16 The current bar (11th bar) broke below the shooting star, so I'll have to wait to see if this was a bear trap or if it is indeed a reversal.
10:20 Stop moved to low of last completed bar.
10:29 Trailing stop hit. +11 ticks.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #286
10:39 Short NQ. 1 tick negative slippage on entry.
Short on test/pierce of FE. Target is 50% of OR.
Price pulled back up to within 1 tick of my stop around 11:20CT, and then to retest FE around 12:10, and I knew for sure that this was going to be a losing trade.
13:35 Target reached. +38 ticks.

Sortie #287
11:32 Short YM.
Short on retest of OR FE. Target is 50% OR.
12:04 No Joy. -6 ticks.
Prep for re-tasking and next sortie.

Sortie #288
12:13 Short Short YM.
Short after another retest of FE.
14:26 Price moved to within 1 tick of my target. Stop to BE+1. Moved target to low of last 2 bars.
14:36 Now that price has bounced up quite a bit, I've moved my target back to its original level, because if price does decide to come back down this low again, it will likely break further.
14:41 Target reached. +30 ticks.

Mission complete. RTB for AAR.
Finished for the day.

AAR
  • Objective: Develop a new mission plan using a longer-term approach.
    -
  • Outcome: As I mentioned yesterday, I'm working toward larger moves and (likely) fewer trades (per market), and I did that today.
    -
    I'm using an approach based on the style of Trader-X. I've followed X for years and I've tried to use this style in the past, but, because of this exercise, I have a very different attitude about trading in general now, and so I want to spend some time with it.
    -
    There are nuances that will take time to learn, but I'll do my best in the meantime.
    -
    Because I'm looking for larger moves and taking fewer trades, I'll be watching more than one market. For now I'll be trading M6E, NQ, and YM. I'll deal with how these work into my risk tolerances after I have some data to look at.
    -
  • Observations: Although there were times today when I was not happy because I was sure I was going to take a bunch of losing trades, trading today was definitely less frenetic than I'm used to. I didn't have too much trouble letting the trades play out, and this has an enormous amount to do with what I've learned during the course of this exercise.
    -
    I'm not trading even amounts of each instrument (e.g., 1 contract of NQ/YM vs. 1 contract of M6E), but right now developing my trading method/rules and executing it/them is the primary focus.

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"Is it hard? Not if you have the right attitude. It's having the right attitude that's hard." - Robert Pirsig
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Last edited by AttitudeTrader; April 3rd, 2013 at 11:32 AM.
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