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DTs Pre Market Prep

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9th December

We are now moving to the March 2017 contract on the US index futures. We are also in the last few weeks of the year, a time where we often get a pop in the market up to the Christmas holiday period. Then the volume typically drops and we have an extremely low participation period through to the second week of January.

Our old levels for the December contract were here: 2184, 2134.75, 2104, 2089.25, 2084, 2006, 1950.75, 1904, 1817.75, 1788.75

To adjust for the new contract we drop these by 5.25 and end up with: 2178.75, 2129.50 , 2099.75, 2084, 2078.75, 2000.75, 1945.5,1898.75,1812.5,1783.5

On the daily chart that looks about right...



In terms of the bigger picture, we finally broke above the highs towards the end of November but then we spent almost 2 weeks moving sideways. It was only when we came back to test the old highs and they held, that traders got the confidence to really participate to the upside.



This is much clearer on the shorter term chart. This is pretty common on the index futures. We break out but in the absence of solid macro economic news (like an interest rate cut), traders are a little shy about joining the break. The test shows us that the market can hold these prices and so it gives people confidence to get on board. From here we may move up or we could well test the 2208.50 area (yellow line) before driving up again. To the downside, I’d be very nervous holding a long position of the market holds below 2208.50.



We have 3 distributions on this weeks profile. Looking at this, we can see not much has traded from 2230 down to 2210. If we do slip below 2230, then we could make it back to 2210 very quickly. So today I’ll be looking for the market to hold 2230 and to play the downside if it doesn’t.



The 2230 area is also quite obvious on the daily profiles, in fact it’s really the only thing going on.

Plan
  • Biased upside
  • Pullbacks to 2230 and 2208.50 represent trades where we could get a large amount of upside participation as traders feel that the upside is more sure now there has held.
  • Other than that, looking for “go with” trades to the long side, jumping on long side momentum
  • The market is rolling over and so Friday and Monday may be quite lackluster
  • We don’t have that many potentially big days ahead of us. As we head into the 19th December, we have to be on the lookout for the market slowing down. Looking at the calendar it appears to work well. Friday of that week is the 23rd, so people will (in theory) be working right up to that date.

Weekly Numbers

Range 2173.50-> 2246
Value 2192.50 -> 2234

Daily Numbers

Range 2227.75-> 2231.50 / 2245
Value 2235 -> 2243
Globex 2239.75 -> 2243.50

Settlement – 2242.50

Other levels – 2230, 2208.50

Key Levels – 2178.75, 2129.50 , 2099.75, 2084, 2078.75, 2000.75, 1945.5,1898.75,1812.5,1783.5

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Constitution day here in Thailand - so wife is insisting I take a vacation.

I'll fill her with wine and then sneak back on later

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13th December




Decent volume yesterday, just under 2 million contracts traded. We have a new level at 2208.50 - although it's not been tested yet and so it may be removed.



On a weekly basis, we have an upper distribution from last week that tops out around 2243, it's a bit tenuous but it's the closest level for a test.



Yesterdays low was 46.75, so not far off the 43 level. It was a slow afternoon and we've traded within yesterday overnight - so we do have the possibility of a range week here.

Going in, I'm biased upside. Ideally, I'd like to see us consolidate 2240-2270 as a base for moving up or drop down to restest 08.50. I'm not sure how many more active trading days we have left but we should at least be good for this week. As usual, I'm looking for a test to give us the most reliable move.

Plan
- Long bias
- looking at 2243, 2208.50 for a test to give us more upside participation
- looking also for overnight/developing daily levels to play off
- eyes out for volume drying

Weekly Numbers
Range 2173.50-> 2246
Value 2192.50 -> 2255.75
S1 - 2213.75, R1 - 2275.50

Daily Numbers
Range 2246.75-> 2259 / 2264.75
Value 2249.50 -> 2253.50
Globex 2247.75 -> 2257

Settlement – 2250.50

Other levels – 2208.50, 2243

Key Levels – 2178.75, 2129.50 , 2099.75, 2084, 2078.75, 2000.75, 1945.5,1898.75,1812.5,1783.5

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14th December



FOMC day today so of course, that can throw our prep out - but here goes...

As expected we progressed upwards yesterday and as expected we went up, down and up again in the process! We found support at the prior days high, retested it again before we got the pop to new all time highs. So an eye on 47.25 today.



Not much to say about the weekly profile other than it's still worth keeping an eye on the 43 area.



We had a late pullback yesterday to 65.50 and that is holding overnight, so we could push up from here.

Plan
- As per yesterday, upward bias
- best trade will be long off a test (but 65.50 holding may be that test) - pereferably off one of our levels below
- FOMC does muddy the waters though
- I'm an AM trader, so plan is to see how the first 45 mins play out and if it's dead, give the day a pass

Weekly Numbers

Range 2173.50-> 2246
Value 2248.25 -> 2261.75
S1 - 2213.75, R1 - 2275.50

Daily Numbers
Range 2247.75 / 2259 -> 2273
Value 2263 -> 2270
Globex 2265.25 -> 2268.25

Settlement – 2273.25

Other levels – 2208.50, 2243, 2247.25, 2265.50

Key Levels – 2178.75, 2129.50 , 2099.75, 2084, 2078.75, 2000.75, 1945.5,1898.75,1812.5,1783.5

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15th December



An interesting day today. We had FOMC yesterday and as expected rates went up. Now, you could say that the market reacted negatively but you could also say it was a typical post-FOMC knee jerk. In theory the rate increase was alreadyu expected and priced in.

But - there is the offchance that the technicals are irrelevant today that they we have a fundamentals driven day.



We are still above the upper distribution from last week, so that's still a reference point.



I think today is just a matter of one issue - will it be volatile or not. After a big day like that we could just sit in a range and that's what is happening overnight or it could put in a decent move. I think it's a coin toss as to which way any "decent move" will be.

Plan
So the plan today is simple. Watch for a high participation move and go with it, otherwise play the range. We do have good potential either way, or rather, we have the potential for people jumping on board whichever way it moves.

Weekly Numbers
Range 2143-> 2273
Value 2248 -> 2263.50
S1 - 2213.75, R1 - 2275.50

Daily Numbers
Range 2243 -> 2272.50
Value 2253 -> 2267.50
Globex 2248 -> 2257

Settlement – 2252.75

Other levels – 2208.50, 2243, 2247.25

Key Levels – 2178.75, 2129.50 , 2099.75, 2084, 2078.75, 2000.75, 1945.5,1898.75,1812.5,1783.5

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I'm done for the year - got friends in town and then heading to the beach for a recharge.

Have a great New Year everyone.

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9th January



Volume is back, so I'm back to trading. 1.5 million contracts on Friday and it looks like we had decent volume last week from Tuesday onwards.



We have a range marked out from 2227.75-2273. So first thing I'm looking for today is for a failure at the top and for shorts to jump on that OR a continuation up and a retest of the top of the range. To the downside, looking at 2267.25 as the first hurdle and I'd rather take shorts below that. Certainly don't want to short into it.



We can see this higher activiy area on the weekly market profile. That tops out at 2265-2266.



And similarly on the daily profiles. It's not a lot of trade, just a downside area that traders could be looking at. So we do have an area below us where we ranged for a couple of days and the top or bottom of that could hold.

Plan
- Looking for either the range high to hold (what we have now may be just a probe up) and for shorts but not short into 2265-2267.25. Downside target on this would down to 2227.75 but not necessarily in one day.
- Looking for a decent move up and then a pullback towards the range high, obviously no hurdles in the way if we take the long trade but not many targets either.
- As it's my first day back, just looking to get back into the markets nice and easy. No rush to trade.

Weekly Numbers
Range 2139.50 -> 2277
Value 2249.50 -> 2266
S1 - 2248.50, R1 - 2286

Daily Numbers
Range 2258.25 -> 2277
Value 2265.75 -> 2277
Globex 2270 -> 2275.25

Settlement – 2271.50

Other levels – 2227.75, 2273 (range), 2265-2267.25

Key Levels – 2178.75, 2129.50 , 2099.75, 2084, 2078.75, 2000.75, 1945.5,1898.75,1812.5,1783.5

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10th January



Well so much for "volume coming back". It was a low volume lackluster day yesterday, so really we are in the same position going into today that we were yesterday. Looking for continuation upwards after a break of the range (looking less likely) or a move to the range low (2227.75).



Looking at last week, we still have that major distribution which is holding, so hopefully if we can push down a little more, we may free up and start the move down to the range low.



As you can see if you look left on the daily profiles, there's a few days of sideways action from last week where we now sit.

Plan
- Low expectation day, could turn into a low expectation week
- Looking for a break of 2260 to potentially helps us on the road to 2227.75
- Will look for something close to the open as that might be all we get for today
- Obviously if volume comes in, I'll be looking to follow but really not many scenarios for the day on the table prior to the open. Going to have to be more reactive.

Weekly Numbers
Range 2139.50 -> 2277
Value 2249.50 -> 2266
S1 - 2248.50, R1 - 2286

Daily Numbers
Range 2263.50-> 2270.25 / 2275.25
Value 2264.50 -> 2269.25
Globex 2259.50 -> 2266

Settlement – 2265

Other levels – 2227.75, 2273, 2260

Key Levels – 2178.75, 2129.50 , 2099.75, 2084, 2078.75, 2000.75, 1945.5,1898.75,1812.5,1783.5

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11th January



Still going nowhere. Volume a bit better yesterday but still on the low side. As usual when we get a range week, we are now waiting for a break and expecting poor action till it occurs.



We still haven't broken the high volume area from last week, and now that's the area we've spent the most time this week, so we still have a good chance of some nice downside action if that breaks.



Yesterday was a slow start but the range wasn't too bad in the end. We held the overnight low but it we didn't see much in terms of momentum till we cracked through.

Plan
- another low expectation day.
- looking for a break below the weeks low for downside participation
- possibility of decent upside momentum above 2266-2268, otherwise the upside is tricky in my opinion
- will look for an early trade again, and then look for a break of any range that forms

Weekly Numbers
Range 2159.50 -> 2275.25
Value 2260.75 -> 2268.75
S1 - 2248.50, R1 - 2286

Daily Numbers
Range 2259.50-> 2274
Value 2263.25 -> 2270.74
Globex 2259.74 -> 2265.50

Settlement – 2263.75

Other levels – 2227.75, 2273, 2260, 2266-68

Key Levels – 2178.75, 2129.50 , 2099.75, 2084, 2078.75, 2000.75, 1945.5,1898.75,1812.5,1783.5

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12th Jan



Volume is up but we are still stuck in a tight range for the week. We did extend the weeks range to the downside but we couldn't hold it. So while we are in a greater range, as defined by the white square, the weeks range is defining the action.



With that in mind, most of the volume is in the 2260-2270 area, which is most likely not the best area to take a trade (except off the open). If we probe out of that area, I'll be looking for a sign it's holding.



A decent range yesterday, which is obviously a benefit. We were looking for a move below 2260 to potentially shake us out of this range but that didn't happen yet.

Plan
- No bias - we are in a range week, so probes out, heafakes etc are likely. We will break the range at some point but have no idea of knowing when.
- No trades in the 2260-2270 area as I'm expecting chop, will look for fades back to the range if we move out of it
- Exception to the 2260-2270 rule will be if we get a move off the open. Despite the big moves of the past 2 days, I'd still prefer to get something close to the open as range weeks can have some awful days....

Weekly Numbers
Range 2255 -> 2275.25
Value 2260.75 -> 2268.25
S1 - 2248.50, R1 - 2286

Daily Numbers
Range 2255 -> 2270.25
Value 2260.75 -> 2268.25
Globex 2260.75 -> 2271.75

Settlement – 2270.50

Other levels – 2227.75, 2273

Key Levels – 2178.75, 2129.50 , 2099.75, 2084, 2078.75, 2000.75, 1945.5,1898.75,1812.5,1783.5

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