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YM day trading with price action - My Journey
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YM day trading with price action - My Journey

  #31 (permalink)
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16 July 2013 Tuesday - Failed Reversal

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Failed Reversal

Pre entry
Earlier on, price had a steep downfall which broke the lower channel line. There were 5 successive bear bars in the downswing. A bull reversal bar formed. I was thinking of a channel line overshoot and a reversal and was looking for a second entry long. The next bar started with a bull bar which initially had a bull follow through but sellers took control and pushed price decisively down to close at the low. I decided to change my mindset and take a short based on 2 reasons:
1) The bull reversal bar could be a failed reversal bar which traps early buyers especially when the next bull bar turned decisively into a bear bar which closed at the reversal bar low in the final moments.
2) There was a first steep downswing and there could be another downswing after a brief pause

My emotional temperature was overall calm and alert. Writing commentry of the ongoing price action helps a lot in this aspect.

The risk was within limit.
Risk: 10 ticks Target: 10 ticks

Entry
I entered using an OCO stop buy order

The stop was placed at the signal bar high (red line) and the target was placed an equal distance away (green line).
I got filled at 1 tick off the intended entry.

Trade
Initially, price went up and fluctuated between the entry and stop level. I felt down seeing price go against the trade immediately. However, price did not seem to have the strength to go further.
I went away from the computer to watch television for 15 minutes to avoid being tempted to intefere with the trade.
It was a good choice as i felt calmer. After 15 minutes, i went back to check on the trade.

Exit
The trade hit the target.
Result: 9 ticks

Price had a second bull pause bar and failed reversal. It went down near to the LOY support level before forming a bull inside bar.

On reflection, it was a sound trade and I followed my rules. Writing an ongoing commentry of the price action helps to follow price better. Getting away from the chart was another good move as price went close to the target before forming a bull bar. If I had watched the chart tick by tick, i am not sure if i have the nerves to hold on.

1 thing I missed out was not noticing the LOY support level. During the entry, the LOY level was not visible on the chart. If I had zoomed out first, i would have noticed this level and set a target nearer to the LOY level. Hence before entering the target level, i need to zoom the chart out and check for other possible levels.

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  #32 (permalink)
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One thing to focus on improving - July 2013

I was reading through some futures.io (formerly BMT) threads and one advice struck me. Focus on one thing and work on improving it.

From earlier trade reviews, i need to work on setting my targets properly.

Hence, for new journal entries, I will dedicate a sub section under Entries to detail the reasoning behind setting a target.
I will also grade the setting of the target level. Factors are:

- Risk-Reward
- Location of the target
- Emotion when setting the target (e.g. calm, doubtful, fear)

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  #33 (permalink)
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23 July Tuesday - Failed Reversal


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Failed Reversal

Pre entry PA analysis
Earlier, price broke a bull trendline and formed lower pivot highs and lows. Price then formed a bull inside bar which became a TTR. I decided to place a short below the TTR low due to 2 reasons:
1) There was a prior steep downswing and the TTR is below the ema. Price could go down further for a 3rd leg especially to reach the LOY level.
2) The TTR downside breakout is a L2 bar

Entry, Risk, Target
The risk is within limits. Risk is 13 ticks. The stop is placed at the high of the bull inside bar near the TTR high (red line)
The target is 19 ticks. It is placed at a prior pivot low level. (green line)

My grade for setting the target level is a B (meaning ok-ish)
I decided the target level in a calm state of mind, placed it at a reasonable level (a prior support) and the reward is bigger than the risk.

I entered on an OCO stop sell order.

Trade

Initially price went down but only reached 9 ticks before pushing back up to the TTR. I felt anxious but writing a commentry of my emotions, price action and what-if scenarios helped to keep myself calm and i did not have the urge to intefere with the trade. By the third bar, price has gone back up to the TTR area and i was looking to scratch the trade, according to one of my exit rules.

Exit

I scratched the trade with a 1 tick loss.
Result: -1 tick

On review, the trade was a BE one and getting out early turned out to be correct as price formed a 2 legged upswing and hit the stop level. I did 2 new things in order to better follow the price action and maintain a calm state of mind.
The first is to visualise taking a loss. Before i looked at the chart, i closed my eyes, visualised a trade which hit the stop loss level. Then i visualised myself staying calm, journaling the trade to learn lessons from it and not get into revenge trading mode. I also told myself that losses are just a cost of doing business in trading and are tuition fees charged by the market.

The second is to write down my emotional temperature besides writing down the price action. It helps to become more self aware of what i am feeling at that moment. (attached below)

Both these practices are useful and I intend to continue doing them.

Attached Files
Register to download File Type: docx 2013_07_23.docx (144.7 KB, 10 views)
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  #34 (permalink)
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29 July Monday - reversal at range extreme

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1st trade:
PA analysis
Price was in a trading range and was having a 2nd leg down towards the lower range extreme. I decided to take a long because a bull reversal bar with clear price rejection had formed near the lower range. This area was also where price had bounced off, forming prior pivot lows.

Entry
I entered on an OCO stop buy order with risk at 14 ticks and target at 15 ticks. The target was placed at a prior pivot high level. The stop was placed at the signal bar low.

Trade
Price went down initially before shooting up 9 ticks. After this, it went down and the next bar went down decisively, reaching near the stop price. I got nervous and shifted the stop down from the signal bar low to 2 ticks below the range extreme. Price continued downwards and hit the adjusted stop.

Exit and post trade PA
Price hit the stop.
Result: -19 ticks
After hitting the stop, price formed a bull reversal bar at the new range low.

2nd trade:
PA analysis
Price formed 2 bull reversal bars at the range low and I decided to take a long position as price was at the range low and there were 2 bull reversal bars with clear price rejections off the low.

Entry
I entered on an OCO stop buy order with risk at 12 ticks and target at 14 ticks. The target was placed at the prior pivot high. The stop was placed at the signal bar low.

Trade
On the entry bar, price went up a bit and the second bar was a bear inside bar. I was still calm as this could be just the end of the first leg. On the third bar, price continued upwards and managed to exceed 9 ticks. However, price seemed to encounter resistance and i decided to manually exit according to my time based exit rule. Besides price could be in a larger bear channel and this could be the formation of a lower pivot high.

Exit and post trade PA
Price hit the manually adjusted target.
Result: 9 ticks
Price went down decisively 2 bars later to the trading range low and broke down from it.

On review, I broke a fundamental rule by shifting the stop when price approached the stop. Breaking this rule also exceeded my risk limit, hence breaking another rule. The interfered stop was hit anyway. I need to be on guard against the fear of being wrong and taking a loss. It is easier said than done in real time. Trade management is still my weakness and i need to work on it.

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  #35 (permalink)
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31 July 2013 Wed - bull flag breakout

PA analysis
I saw a steep bull bar which rose sharply and then price formed a series of sideways,overlapping bars with lower highs and higher lows. This looked like a bull flag. I decided to take a long as price formed a sharp first leg upmove, the flag pattern looked good and it was above the ema. There could be a second leg to go.

Entry
I entered on an OCO stop buy order. The entry was placed near the flag high. The stop was placed at the flag low and the target was placed at a prior pivot high during yesterday's session. The risk is 14 ticks and the target is 14 ticks.

Trade
During the trade, i left the chart and let the trade run its course. I engaged myself with web surfing and did not intefere with the trade. My emotions were calm.

Exit and post trade PA
Price hit the target limit.
Result: 14 ticks

The bull flag breakout continued, had a pause bar and continued higher to form a new high of the day. It then had a steady down swing back to the ema.

On review, the trade was good. The price action analysis was sound and trade management was ok. Strangely, not continuously looking at the chart helped to control my emotions and the urge to make trades for the sake of it. This is worth exploring and i have to find a balance between following price action and being detached enough not to let emotions take over.

Attached Thumbnails
YM day trading with price action - My Journey-capture.png  
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  #36 (permalink)
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monthly review - july 2013

July 2013 was not a good trading month. My trades were not consistent. One trade would be a winner and the next would be a loser. Also, the losers were greater than the winners in general.

In July, I also broke some fundamental rules and my reading of price action was lax. My mistakes are:

1) Entering trades without looking at the context and being lax in assessing price action
I traded TTRs and made trades which reached technical or S/R levels without considering the prior context.
e.g. 11 july, Post #30

2) Shifting stops to avoid taking a loss
-> 29 july, Post #34

3) Manually interfering with the target level because of prior losing trades
-> 8 july, Post #27
-> 9 july, Post #28

My confidence and emotions are also affected due to the inconsistent performance and reading of price action, which played a part in the above mistakes too.

For this August, I will focus on being more stringent in my assessment of price action. I will also focus on improving trade and risk management. My action tasks for the upcoming month are:
  • Focus on trends, trend reversals and channels only
  • Drop fading of trading ranges which have irregular pivots
  • Create a flow chart on assessing price action and make sure the flow is complete before considering an entry
  • Shift the stop to 2 ticks beyond the entry bar once the entry bar closes to reduce risk

Attached Files
Register to download File Type: docx PA Analysis Flow.docx (93.1 KB, 19 views)
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  #37 (permalink)
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7 August 2013 Wed - trend reversal

PA analysis
Price had a steep downswing followed by a TTR. The TTR had bars with noticable lower tails where buyers pushed price up. There was also a small higher low within the TTR. Price broke out from the TTR, broke the trendline, prior pivot high and the ema. Price then formed a Low 2 bear bar at the ema followed by a bull inside bar. I decided to take a long as this followed a trendline break and ema, higher pivot high and low, a bull inside bar and a potential failed Low 2 bar.

Entry
I entered using an OCO stop buy order. The stop was placed at the Low 2 bear bar low and the target was placed at the recent pivot high. (horizontal light green line for the target and horizontal red line for the stop).

Trade
During the trade, price meandered around the entry price and I felt a bit of anxiety but stayed away from interfering with the trade. When the entry bar closed, I shifted the stop to 2 ticks below the entry bar low in order to reduce the risk.

Exit and post trade PA
There was no follow through in either direction after the entry and after 2 bars had closed, i decided to scrap the trade.
Result: 3 ticks
After exiting, price continued up and hit the original target. It then formed a small trading range.

On review, price action analysis was ok and i followed the PA analysis flow chart. I also reduced risk by shifting the stop to beyond the entry bar. The exit was premature on hindsight, although i also followed the rules. There may need to be more adjustment to the time based exit rule depending on future results.

Attached Thumbnails
YM day trading with price action - My Journey-ym-screen-shot-2013-08-07-pm-11.59.14.png  
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  #38 (permalink)
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16 August 2013 Friday - reversal off channel line

PA analysis
Price was moving up slowly with lots of overlap and tails. There were higher highs and lows. An upward channel can be drawn. From the second pivot high, price had a 2 legged down move to the lower channel line. Then a bull inside bar with tails formed. The next bar was a bull bar with a close at the high. I decided to take a long because there was a bull inside bar and a bounce up from the lower channel line, price had a prior 2 legged move down and the channel was trending up.

Entry
I entered using an OCO stop buy order. The stop was placed at the prior bull bar low (red line) and the target was at a prior pivot high (green line). The risk was 14 ticks and the target was 12 ticks.

Trade
I interfered with the trade. As price was moving up, i lowered the target by 5 ticks. Reasons being i had to sleep early and wanted to exit early and another is the desire to take profits quick. Regardless, i did not manage the trade well and let emotions take over.

Exit and post trade PA
Price hit the adjusted target level.
Result: 7 ticks (0.5R)
Price went up, formed a lower pivot high and fell through the lower bull channel line to make a new low.

On review,the entry was ok but staying patient and disciplined is still something I need to work on. It is the size of the wins over the losses which is just as important as the win rate. Currently, I think my mindset is still geared more towards the win rate while giving the winning size less importance.

Attached Thumbnails
YM day trading with price action - My Journey-screen-shot-2013-08-16-pm-11.58.50.png  
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  #39 (permalink)
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23 August 2013 Friday - trendline break, test and reversal

Price action
Price was on a steady uptrend before the open. It formed a new high and had 2 legs down to the ema. Price then decisively broke the ema, bull trendline and the prior higher pivot low. It formed a lower low and moved back up in 2 legs to the prior high for a test of the extreme. It was also a possible double top. There was an intra bar test of the extreme before sellers came in to push price down to form a bear bar with an upper tail.

Entry
I entered on an OCO stop sell order. The stop was placed at the bear signal bar high (red line) and the target was placed an equal distance away and also at a minor prior pivot low (green line). The target and risk are both 17 ticks. The entry was 1 tick past the bear bar low (aqua line)

Trade management
I managed the trade well. When the entry bar closed, i lowered the stop to 3 ticks above the entry bar high and reduced the risk to 12 ticks. The target remained unchanged. Along the way, as price meandered and went up a bit for a pause, i had some thoughts of shifting the stop to BE or shifting the target or just to exit with a quick profit but I held on. A few factors helped me to maintain a clear head. One is to surf the Internet and the other is chatting with my wife while taking an occassional glance at the chart. Finally, I was also determined to make good on my earlier pledges to let the trade run its course and to make a good trade.

Exit and Post trade price action
The target was hit.
Result: 17 ticks (1.4R)
Price formed a tight trading range around the ema.

On review, I finally had a trade where all the boxes were checked. The PA analysis was ok, the risk-reward ratio was met, trade management and emotions were fine. The next step is to build on this and continue to make such good trades. Earlier on, I had also decided to remove the arbitary "exit if price does not hit the stop or target after 2 bars" rule.

Attached Thumbnails
YM day trading with price action - My Journey-screen-shot-2013-08-24-am-12.02.24.png  
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  #40 (permalink)
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27 August 2013 Tuesday - trendline break, test and reversal


I took 2 trades today. Both are trendline break, test and reversal setups.

trade 1:
Price action
Earlier on, price was in a downtrend. It formed a tight trading range at a bottom and had a 2 legged strong upmove which broke the major bear trendline. It then had a strong downmove which had an undershoot test of the extreme. A bull inside bar then a bull reversal bar formed. I decided to take a long as price had a prior trendline break, could form a double bottom reversal and had bull inside and reversal bars in succession.

Entry
I entered using an OCO stop buy order. The stop was placed at the bull reversal bar low and the target was meant to be placed the same distance away. However, I made a mistake when typing in the stop price. Instead of 17 ticks, i mistyped and entered it at 9 ticks away instead. Hence the risk is 9 ticks and target is 17 ticks.

Trade management
I did not realise that i had entered the stop target incorrectly. During the trade, i surfed the net and did not look at the chart. My emotions were calm and i did not interfere with the trade. It was only when the trade was exited did i realise that i had made a mistake during the entry.

Exit and post trade PA
The incorrectly entered stop was hit.
Result: -9 ticks (-0.53R)
Price went down for a second leg and had a test of the bottom.

trade 2:
Price action
After a trendline break and a strong downswing for an undershoot test of the extreme (7 bear bars in a row), price went up a bit and had a bear bar down for a possible second leg and another test of the extreme. A bull reversal bar with its low off the prior extreme formed. I decided to take a long as it was a second leg down for the test, a possible double or mini triple bottom and a bull reversal bar with its low off the prior extreme.

Entry
I entered using an OCO stop buy order. The risk was placed at the signal bar low (red line) and the target was placed the same distance away (green line). Both risk and reward are 19 ticks away.

Trade management
I managed the trade well. I surfed the web, was calm and did not intefere with the trade.

Exit and post trade PA
The target was hit.
Result: 19 ticks (1R)
Price formed a gentle bull channel with small higher highs and lows.

On review, the second trade was a good one and I aim to continue doing the same. For the first trade, i made a mistake during the trade entry, submitted the trade and did not look at the chart anymore. Luckily, the stop was entered wrongly as the original stop would had been hit anyway. However, I still have to check the stop and target levels on the chart once the trade is submitted to ensure they are correct.
Also, regarding PA for the first trade, the downswing test of the extreme was strong with 7 bear bars in a row in 1 single leg. It may be safer to wait for a 2nd entry or after the end of a second leg.

Attached Thumbnails
YM day trading with price action - My Journey-1_screen-shot-2013-08-27-pm-11.18.57.png   YM day trading with price action - My Journey-2_at-pm-11.20.24.png  
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