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trader000's Topstep Trader Combine Journal


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trader000's Topstep Trader Combine Journal

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  #1 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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I am going to journal Topstep trader combine w/ their journaling discount program. New to the forum, hope to be able to contribute.

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  #3 (permalink)
 xelaar 
prague, czech republic
 
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Looks like their 70% back for journalling effort is working well!

Trade to live. Not live to trade.
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  #4 (permalink)
 iqgod 
Market Wizard
Mumbai, India
 
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Moved to A TopStepTrader's Combine: Designed for Six Sigma.

As I understand this journal is for an offical record of the combine the original poster will undertake hence do not wish to add extraneous stuff without good reason.

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  #5 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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I will be starting next week, probably Monday. Looking forward to it and the extra 70% off incentive helps.

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  #6 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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I am going to be doing a 20 day combine.

Account Parameters
Starting Balance: $50,000
Max Position Size: 5
Daily Loss Limit: $1,000
Max Drawdown: $2,000
Objective: Profit $3,500 and adhere to the Combine Rules

Start date: 8/13/2013


I plan to just trade Soybeans futures doing this combine. I have done a couple other combines, but my focus there has been hit and miss since also trading a live account with Open ECry software. I'm hoping this public journaling will force me to focus on the combine better.

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  #7 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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8/13/2013
No trades, got software setup and did not like to start trading mid-day.
Good thing is you don't have to trade every single day the market is open, you do get flexibility so there's no need to rush IMO.

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  #8 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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8/14/2013
No trades on the TST account. Had a couple nice longs in the ZS today on my personal account but was not quick enough to get them into the T4 dom. In hindsight I could have traded longs later in T4 but it felt 'too late'.

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  #9 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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8/15/2013
Short day here, nothing on TST.

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  #10 (permalink)
 kevinkdog   is a Vendor
 
 
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If nothing else, you are showing that patience is key. Many people start a Combine (or open an account) and think they have to start trading immediately.

Good Luck!


Where in Ohio are you? I'm in Cleveland.

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  #11 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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kevinkdog View Post
If nothing else, you are showing that patience is key. Many people start a Combine (or open an account) and think they have to start trading immediately.

Good Luck!


Where in Ohio are you? I'm in Cleveland.

Thanks. Part of my issue is getting trades on my broker's dom and then over to TST. By that time, beans usually not sitting there waiting for me to enter before making the move.



I'm in NE Ohio as well.

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  #12 (permalink)
 kevinkdog   is a Vendor
 
 
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trader000 View Post
Thanks. Part of my issue is getting trades on my broker's dom and then over to TST. By that time, beans usually not sitting there waiting for me to enter before making the move.



I'm in NE Ohio as well.


Are you using market orders? Maybe switching to more limit or stop orders will help, especially if they are not close to current market.

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  #13 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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kevinkdog View Post
Are you using market orders? Maybe switching to more limit or stop orders will help, especially if they are not close to current market.

Hi Kevin - I enter in a 'reactive' state - meaning I need bar closes before orders are placed. I am not entering at support/resistance levels that could be placed on the DOM in advance. Every 60 seconds I have a possible decision to make and then I place the order on my broker's DOM and then T4. And since beans wait for no man, just couldn't get over to the T4 quick enough.

But will start fresh Monday and try to get orders over there quicker.

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  #14 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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8/16/2013
No trades on T4. And that's a wrap.

It helps that the combine does not force you to trade any day the market is open, so I got a cushion still in terms of time. I do have to watch this though b/c on the last combine I backed myself into a corner and was forced to go max contracts the last 2 days. That plan did not work out so well.

Have a good weekend.

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  #15 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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8/19/2013
Beans continue to be a great daytrading market.
Working multiple platforms not the easiest thing, but I'll get it figured out. No filled trades on T4 today.

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  #16 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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8/20/2013
-$310
$49,690

Well somehow I managed to get filled on a day where beans were just not agreeing with me. I thought I was in for 1 contract, but it was 2 so need to watch that closer. Back at it tomorrow.


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  #17 (permalink)
 alphagad 
Greece
 
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trader000 View Post
I will be starting next week, probably Monday. Looking forward to it and the extra 70% off incentive helps.

Hi, good luck to you. Can you point me to where this 70% off is mentioned? Cant find it. Thanks a lot.

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  #18 (permalink)
 kevinkdog   is a Vendor
 
 
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alphagad View Post
Hi, good luck to you. Can you point me to where this 70% off is mentioned? Cant find it. Thanks a lot.

I got it via e-mail...

Join a Combine. Journal your trading days. Submit to a forum.
GET 70% OFF THE NEXT COMBINE OF YOUR CHOICE.

Our goal at TopstepTrader is for you to develop into a consistent, disciplined trader and earn a funded account. When you journal your daily trading, your streaming consciousness, and what you did right and wrong, you're creating an invaluable record for yourself. And when a community can share those journals - it brings a global group of traders together for easy strategy sharing, discussion, personal development and more.

So here's the deal - to encourage daily tracking, we want you to journal a Combine. We are going to do this on a rolling basis, so we're limiting the initial phase to the first 20 traders with approved forum links. If you're interested in tracking your trading on a forum, please email support@topsteptrader.com to ask for details. Please put "70% Combine Journal Discount" in the subject line.

So what happens if you pass your journaled Combine or earn a rollover? Great! In that case, we'll credit you 70% back of the Combine that you purchased and journaled.

"Public journaling is a great tool in not only developing the trader but the entire trading community." - Michael Patak, CEO

Please call us at 312.252.*9490 or email us at support@topsteptrader.com with any questions. And as always, trade well.

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  #19 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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8/21/2013

Beans were stuck in mud for a while today, no trades for me.

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  #20 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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8/22/2013

Had to call it early today, no trades in combine. This was a decent day that I should have gotten some fills on if I was paying attention better. Was preoccupied and then tuned into the TST squawk to learn about new combine rules.

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  #21 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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New combine rules, in particular eliminating the 'time in trade' (TIT) part should be good for me. I did not like that time was a factor - if a trade moves in my favor quickly and I get a profit, what's the difference if it takes 1 minute or 10 minutes? Profit is profit IMO. And it also forced people to game the system, which they mentioned in the squawk. And I did it at times - if my winning TIT was less than my losing TIT, a quick way to fix that is get in a trade with a 1 tick stop. Good chance that stop will be hit rather quickly and can get my losing TIT under 30 seconds. This of course forces you to lose $12.50 + commissions each trade, but it did lower your losing TIT.

So they eliminated the need to take these TIT lowering trades, which just makes obvious sense. While the TIT looked good on paper and in theory, very quick and easy to game that stat.

Links about combine changes:
Updated Combine Rules ? Help & Feedback Center
Minimum Balance Defined ? Help & Feedback Center
Updated Funded Trader Rules ? Help & Feedback Center

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  #22 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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8/23/2013

An uneventful week on the combine for me, back at it Monday. No trades today.
Have a great wknd!

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  #23 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
Thanks: 23 given, 64 received

8/26/2013

One advantage to focusing on a handful of markets to trade is that you can learn the market and what is normal or not normal. Today beans opened w/ some large 1 minute bars (which can happen on the pit open), but the large bars and big moves stayed. Typically my 3 point stop provides plenty of room and today it was clear to see early that my stop level was going to be much closer than normal so I did not trade on T4. I could see a trade entry and where my stop would be and usually it's far enough that the trade has room, but today that same stop size would not be under/above my entry bar! That is very odd.

Volume in the Nov'13 contract as I write this is over 150k. You can see under 100k for the entire day some days.

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  #24 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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Follow up to knowing your market(s).

From the pit open today, something was off. At the time I did not exactly what was causing it, I just knew the charts were saying something was off.

I later see this article: Soybean, Corn, And Wheat Prices Are Surging | Zero Hedge

Then the ZS hits limit up around 2pm EST.

And if you didn't know what limit up was or what happened, your DOM was telling you something was up too:


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  #25 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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Side note - I have been tracking the soybeans market extensively since March and this is the first time I encountered a limit up situation. While it was going on, I sent an IM to a trading group on Skype that I talk with the following:
[2:05:34 PM] but it may not be allowed to b/c keeps stopping at 13.98
[2:05:47 PM] thats +.70
[2:06:06 PM] so an easy short? lol
[2:08:25 PM] or just keep shorting it damn, it's not allowed to break lol
[2:08:39 PM] probably get huge slippage on the buy stop
[2:08:39 PM] can load the boat and take a few ticks
[2:08:55 PM] or more than a few ticks, wow
[2:08:58 PM] nice 1min bar
While we were joking in chat about this, I sat and wondered - if price is not allowed to break 13980, why not short it? But I am unfamiliar with how limit up's work and in hindsight it was a great, simple trade w/ lots of profit available. Assuming the +.70 level is unable to be broken, seems like a high probability short. One problem w/ this strategy though - you may not trade for months and months.

Here's the 1 minute chart of ZSX3 today and where we started to discuss in our Skype group about a high probability short area:




Video on limit up and limit down:
Understanding Limit Up and Limit Down - MoneyShow.com

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 kevinkdog   is a Vendor
 
 
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trader000 View Post
Assuming the +.70 level is unable to be broken, seems like a high probability short.

If someone told you this was a good idea, please - for the sake of your account - do NOT listen to them again. EVER. This was anything BUT a high probability short.

When "lock limits" hit - that's what Beans had for a while today - it may not unlock for days.


Here is an example. Maybe on the day circled you thought price can't go any lower because it hit its daily limit, so its a high probability long.



Problem is, no one else thought buying was a good idea...for days.




This was the 2003 Mad Cow incident in Live Cattle. I got long 2 hours before the Mad Cow event occurred. I got smashed over the next week.

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  #27 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
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Thanks Kevin! This was the first limit up that I saw in real-time so we were joking in Skype about it, but then I started to think out loud. It just doesn't happen enough for me to have experience with it so today was a big learning experience.

So a follow up question when the day limit is hit -- how/when does price start to move again? I saw beans hit their limit and you could tell on the chart easily with the dashes nothing was going on for 6 minutes. Then price started to move and trading resumed. Then it got back to the limit level and stopped for 1 minute this time. Then it tested the limit level one more time and promptly sold off w/ no break when the level was hit.

I don't understand how/when the exchange freezes prices and when it starts to trade again.

Thanks!

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  #28 (permalink)
 kevinkdog   is a Vendor
 
 
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trader000 View Post
Thanks Kevin! This was the first limit up that I saw in real-time so we were joking in Skype about it, but then I started to think out loud. It just doesn't happen enough for me to have experience with it so today was a big learning experience.

So a follow up question when the day limit is hit -- how/when does price start to move again? I saw beans hit their limit and you could tell on the chart easily with the dashes nothing was going on for 6 minutes. Then price started to move and trading resumed. Then it got back to the limit level and stopped for 1 minute this time. Then it tested the limit level one more time and promptly sold off w/ no break when the level was hit.

I don't understand how/when the exchange freezes prices and when it starts to trade again.

Thanks!

It unfreezes if/when someone is willing to sell below the limit price. So, is limit price is 1398, and no one wants to sell here, no trading takes place, until someone agrees to sell at 1398. Today, that happened 6 minutes later.

Many times, the price will be locked until the next day.

So, you could have sold at 1398, the market stays limit up, and then tomorrow (tonight actually) the price could open 20 more cents higher. You are out at least $1000 per contract in that case.

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trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
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kevinkdog View Post
It unfreezes if/when someone is willing to sell below the limit price. So, is limit price is 1398, and no one wants to sell here, no trading takes place, until someone agrees to sell at 1398. Today, that happened 6 minutes later.

Many times, the price will be locked until the next day.

So, you could have sold at 1398, the market stays limit up, and then tomorrow (tonight actually) the price could open 20 more cents higher. You are out at least $1000 per contract in that case.

Great info, thanks!

So if it stayed locked at 1398, on the re-open price resets and can move higher? But it can't move higher in the current pit session?

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 kevinkdog   is a Vendor
 
 
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trader000 View Post
Great info, thanks!

So if it stayed locked at 1398, on the re-open price resets and can move higher? But it can't move higher in the current pit session?

Right. Exchanges have defined rules for all of this - the amount of limit, etc. Probably some obscure rules, too.

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  #31 (permalink)
 atata 
Calgary, AB
 
Experience: Intermediate
Platform: NT, IB, TOS, MC
Broker: IB, Rithmic
Trading: CL, ES, GC, ZS, ZB
 
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I've read a silver story on limit up. Forgive me, I am really bad when it comes to names, pretty good with numbers but names... /I wonder if it was Jack Schwager.../ anywho the author has bought some silver contracts when SI was ~8 or so as an advise from his broker. This was at the beginning of his career with not much knowledge of the markets. Nothing happened for months other than taking some heat therefore he has closed his position. Shortly after si started to limit up for days... meaning nobody was selling... since nobody was selling. Everyday silver market opened and went to limit up with no trade at all, so shorts got just slaughtered and longs were just laughing to bank... so when you short a limit up or down you have to think that could go on for a few days, without having a chance to get out at all. What is the likeliness or probability such thing to happen? well probably next to nothing but it did happen in the past.
I have to admit I did trade the limit up on ZS, I went short and got out very quickly making a few ticks after the first limit up. My logic was we had still ~3 hours trading and the big guys want to get in with more contracts so they will try to manipulate the corresponding market such as ZC to get a price drop which will "force" ZS to come off limit for a few points before going back to limit. My logic has worked however it is a risky stuff and they are higher probability trades out there. You may rather want to try buy a limit up like 5 points below limit up value with a 5 points stop and than you might get another 10-20 points after hours if it works out for you. That might have higher probability however I do not have any numbers to support it one way or the other.

Hope this helps,

atata

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trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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8/27/2013

Storms in area knocked my internet out. I love TimeWarner until something happens - weather or 'upgrades' - and then I get nervous. No trades today.

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  #33 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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8/28/2013

+$165.00
Balance: $49,855


Caught some on the T4 dom today, should be back at $50k hopefully tomorrow.
Beans were tight most of the day for my method at least, so I'll take the profit and move on.


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trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
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8/29/2013

+$30
Balance: $49,885


Very poor execution on my part today. This p-l should be considerably different but suffice to say the beans shook me out of 2 very nice trades in hindsight. I got jumpy on the T4 dom and literally exited 2 different trades seconds before taking off in my direction. No reason to exit other than trading like a rookie.


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trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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8/30/2013
+$290

Balance: $50,175


Caught the break to the downside w/ 2 contracts. Really liked the look of it and almost put another 1-2 contracts on. In hindsight, would have been a good idea. A week of woulda, coulda, shoulda -- esp on Thursday. That day bugs me, but it's done and move on from it... and hopefully learn from it.


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trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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9/3/2013

No trades.

I need to get over my fear that I missed the boat when trades on the combine T4 do not fill near the open. If I miss a few trades, I feel like I missed the move and shouldn't bother the rest of the day. And more often than not, that is a bad idea. Soybeans provide plenty of volatility most of the time and missing a trade or two is not the end of the world. It's frustrating if something doesn't fill, but not a reason to shut down and not trade. Definitely something I need to work on, as that has been an issue for me since I can remember. If I get into my grove early, I can keep going. If I miss trade(s) early, I go into shutdown mode and that is not necessary.

Here's my current combine stats:

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trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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9/4/2013

+$7.50
Balance: $50,182.50


Got short in the combine platform later than I wanted and then had brilliant idea to trail my stop. Market hit it and then continued down move. Not sure why I trailed this, I know trailing is no good in the long run but wanted to 'protect' the trade since I got in 'late'.


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  #38 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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9/5/2013

+$290
Balance: $50,472.50


Better execution today. Should still be trading this and up much more, but will take the profit and move on.


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trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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9/6/2013

No trades. Wasn't in the game mentally today.
Have a good weekend.


Combine stats as of 9/5/2013:


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  #40 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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I got an email from TST that I am not meeting the word requirement and not including images for each day I traded. I did find the email that says 200 words, which is quite a bit when just posting about your day. I guess I can just ramble in order to meet the word requirement by saying anything that might use more words and create more run-on sentences, but that seems unproductive and is just using space in order to have more words in your posts to meet a random 200 word goal.

As for images, are my T4 images not showing in this thread? I am also posting the stats off the TST page, so I'm not sure what else is needed from me. Maybe someone on the forum will have an idea what other images I am supposed to be posting.

I replied back, but don't expect a reply till Monday. If I'm not going to get the full 70% discount, I will discontinue posting. This is an added step in my daily process and I thought my journal was going well and acceptable. I see now my words per post are lower than the 200 mandate, but I am also posting on days when I don't trade (which is not required) so maybe I will just wait to post on days that I don't trade and combine those w/ days that I do trade to meet the word requirement. Then I can game the system, just as traders were doing w/ the TST TIT requirement. That link goes to a post that not only includes a TST image, was purely informational, not a requirement and promoting TST all in one... but I doubt that post counts to any word mandates.

I guess I'll see what TST says back, but no discount = no more journaling for me.

Wait, should I have held onto this post for a day when I placed a trade to boost my word count?


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  #41 (permalink)
 Big Mike 
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Swing Trader
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I think you are missing the point and only focusing on the discount.

TST is encouraging good behavior - kind of like a parent paying their kids for A's in school. The kid doesn't yet have the wisdom to know the benefit, but the parents do.

At the end of the day you get out what you put in.

Sent from my LG Optimus G Pro

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  #42 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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Big Mike View Post
I think you are missing the point and only focusing on the discount.

TST is encouraging good behavior - kind of like a parent paying their kids for A's in school. The kid doesn't yet have the wisdom to know the benefit, but the parents do.

At the end of the day you get out what you put in.

Sent from my LG Optimus G Pro

I understand what you are saying Mike. I just find it hard to reach at least 200 words when I'm trading a mechanical system that doesn't change. The only thing that changes, is my execution.... which obviously needs help and I thought the journal was helping there. I'm also posting on days that I don't trade (not a requirement) and other info, such as the big combine changes (also not a requirement).

Can you confirm if my T4 images are showing up though? The email says that I'm not including trade images for each day that I traded. Do you know what else is required besides a screenshot of the T4 account screen showing the current day P-L as well as current balance?

I like the journaling, even if I am not long winded, but it's also an added step in my daily routine.

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  #43 (permalink)
 Big Mike 
Site Administrator
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I see only the TST combine report screenshots, nothing from T4 best I can tell.

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  #44 (permalink)
trader000
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Big Mike View Post
I see only the TST combine report screenshots, nothing from T4 best I can tell.

Sent from my LG Optimus G Pro

I am confused then. Each day that I had trades on, I always included my account snapshot from T4. I can see them on my end looking back at old posts as well.

So you're saying you do not see any of these...




If you can't see them, that would explain why TST can't either. But I uploaded them, embedded them and they show on my end now. Should I not use the BigMike image upload and use an external site?

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  #45 (permalink)
 Big Mike 
Site Administrator
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No you are right, they are there. I was looking from my phone w/Tapatalk earlier, they were probably too small for me to see or I just overlooked them.

Mike

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  #46 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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Big Mike View Post
No you are right, they are there. I was looking from my phone w/Tapatalk earlier, they were probably too small for me to see or I just overlooked them.

Mike

Thanks Mike! Will work on more in-depth analysis going forward.

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  #47 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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Trade Date: 9/9/2013
P-L: $15.00
Balance: $50,487.50

Trade 1: Short trade for +1 tick. First trade of day on the combine platform was a short and I was patient with it and liked my profit targets. It got close to my first target and I trailed the stop, which got taken out unfortunately. I do not like trailing my stop b/c I know that over time it just costs me money, but the first trade of the week and wanted to lock in something, even if minimal. Price did hit my first target, so once again the trail cost money.

Price then gave a nice looking re-short and I did not take on the combine platform. That turned into a very nice drop, exactly what I was playing.

I had planned to keep trading the combine account, but after a couple no fills, I basically gave up on the day partly because I ‘missed’ the short move. While price had moved down, there were more trades to get into on the short side and most were nice trades.

So once again I am reminded of 2 things:

1. Do not trail your stop.
If you are about to trail stop, just hit flatten and take the profit that is there.

2. Do not quit mentally just b/c a trade or 2 does not fill.
Soybeans provides so many great opportunities every single day that 1 or 2 trades will not make the combine, nor cost the combine.


I also remember why I was unable to post screenshots from the TST website – their site does not update till later (I’m guessing after the indexes close) but I am unavailable at that time. So I hope my T4 screenshots work (which are real time) and then I can post the TST screenshot on Fri or over the weekend.


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  #48 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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9/10/2013
No trades on the combine platform today.
I missed a couple entries to start and for whatever reason, that seems to put me into a cautious mode on the combine.

9/11/2013
P-L: +$305
Balance: $50,792.50


Trade 1: First trade that filled on the combine platform was a nice trade. I got into my normal position for the combine of 2 lots and then price just sat there. For 5 minutes price really didn’t do much, but I did see the same exact level being respected for each of those 5 minutes. One big advantage to minute based charts IMO is that you can see when price is respecting the same level multiple times. This especially true on ag’s. I have seen this same pattern on corn, wheat, soybean oil and soybean meal. For me and my trading, this is golden. B/c of seeing this pattern on the ZS appear while in a trade, I entered 2 more contracts once I saw 13566 level being held for 5 minutes. So this trade produced a nice $325 profit and my exits in hindsight were pretty damn good if I do say so myself. I saw that the ZS was moving, but nothing huge (yet) and so I kept my target very modest and achievable. I was also thinking about exiting the trade for a small loss at one point, but stayed patient and it worked out nicely.

Trade 2: Did not get another fill and decided to shut T4 down for day since the ZS was very tight today. Getting my +3 target was looking huge and focusing on the same market each day, you learn the ebb’s and flows of that market. Today the ZS (as of 1230pm EST) was pretty tight and slower moving. Even w/ that said, some decent moves as long as you’re not swinging for the fences.

Daily P-L screenshot:


TST screenshot (minus today):

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  #49 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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Date: 9/12/2013

No trades in the combine.
I came into the day ready to trade, but after missing the first great looking short and then the next one, I went into my combine shell mainly due to huge ag news at 12pm coming out. Ag’s do have major econ reports often (when compared to indexes) but when they do, the ag’s will move quickly and swiftly. I knew I probably wouldn’t trade post 12pm, but there were a handful of trades before the news that I should have been in.


Date: 9/12/2013

No trades in the combine.
Today was frustrating. I got up late and felt rushed. Then the day started slower on soybeans and my brain kicked in thinking – ut oh, this could be a slow Friday. Problem is that this is a residual from my time trading the indexes and the ag’s do not operate like the indexes. As a result of my ‘knowledge’, I decided to not trade and then a gorgeous down trend kicked in. Just short after short was possible and I watched them all b/c I just knew better… I wish I could erase all this great ‘knowledge’ I have and just trade what I see.

Back at it Monday.

TST Stats:


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  #50 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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I'm not required to post on days when no combine trades are placed, but I do like keeping a tab on each day.

Date: 9/16/2013

No trades in the combine.
Did not get a couple fills on T4, decided to shut it down because ‘missed’ the short. Then soybeans continued to drop, drop and drop. Once again, the mentality of ‘missing’ a trade is costing me time and money. Purely a mental issue that is probably my biggest mental monkey.

Just to illustrate how silly this is – I miss the short after the open and just watched price crater. Price pulled back, which I expected, and did not take the short b/c missed the first one that was a winner. That short was a fairly quick +3. Another confirmed pullback shows, I pass, and an almost instant +3. By the end of the day, there were 12 possible trades and missing the first one resulted in me watching the rest of the day, where plenty of shorting opportunities were present. But since I just knew better, I wasn’t letting the market trick me…

Date: 9/17/2013

No trades in the combine.
Had some connection issues and was not comfortable putting trades on. In hindsight, turned out to be a decent day (again) offered by soybeans. I am amazed most days just how many ES points the ZS provides regularly. When I look at ES charts and see a bunch of slop, I wonder why people even bother with that market.

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  #51 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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Date: 9/18/2013

No trades in combine.
I had 3 pending orders on the combine platform that did not fill. That was frustrating. I would have assumed at least one would fill, but no luck this today.


Date: 9/19/2013
No trades in combine.
Prices were moving quicker today and could not get over to the T4 dom in time. It’s tough trading 2 completely different dom’s. It’d be nice if I could place it on one dom and then transfer to the 2nd.



Date: 9/20/2013
P-L: $165
Balance: $50,975.50


Got a fill today and a quick move after entry when a ‘shelf’ broke. Wanted to get a couple more fills but did not get the fill. Not the week I was looking for in terms of fills and entries. Another great week of intraday volatility on soybeans, just have to fine tune my approach trading 2 completely different dom’s. I also find the T4 dom a bit cumbersome at times, which has me scrambling to enter or adjust orders. For example, I have an auto-oco bracket go out on every entry, but I will adjust profit targets at times. Depending where those are on the dom (which I keep centered), I then have to go into a completely separate window, find the order(s), click, adjust price, click revise. Very time consuming and not user-friendly at all. Meanwhile on my OEC dom (which is also centered), I can scroll up or down, find order(s) and drag right there, directly on the dom. I'm not sure how OEC which has plenty of retail traders can allow you to scroll the dom while keeping it centered, yet T4 which is targeted to professionals, cannot do that.
Have a great weekend!


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  #52 (permalink)
LogicalTrader
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In the T4 dom, you can right click above the market to quickly scroll up and vice-versa below to find your exit limit order once you are in a trade. Every time you right click, it scrolls up 20-25 ticks I think. You can then drag and drop your order just like any other platform. If you left click after this, it will re-center the dom. If you want to split the target to have say, 2 exits then you can right click the order and the revise window opens up.

I have also learnt all this the hard way. I still have execution errors after almost 3 months of using it

Hope this helps.

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  #53 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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iNeo View Post
In the T4 dom, you can right click above the market to quickly scroll up and vice-versa below to find your exit limit order once you are in a trade. Every time you right click, it scrolls up 20-25 ticks I think. You can then drag and drop your order just like any other platform. If you left click after this, it will re-center the dom. If you want to split the target to have say, 2 exits then you can right click the order and the revise window opens up.

I have also learnt all this the hard way. I still have execution errors after almost 3 months of using it

Hope this helps.

Good to know, thanks for the info!

I had a separate window w/ my pending orders open and went through there to adjust orders that were not currently visible on the dom, which is very cumbersome.

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  #54 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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Date: 9/23/2013
P-L: +$310
Balance: $51,267.50


Trade 1: Wanted to get short near the open, but the huge opening bar did not allow that. Got short on the pullback from the flush down at the open. I entered 1 contract to test the water and then 2 more. And then it tested my patience. Patience is not my strong suit, but I had my stop in place and told myself I need to give it room to breathe and not cut it. I was very tempted to cut it with a small loss and then price broke down quickly and my patience was rewarded. I staggered my exits at 3 points. Overall, the trade worked out according to plan and my impatience did not turn a decent win into a loss.

I planned to get a few more trades on, but to be honest, that first one mentally wore me out for a Monday. It’s so easy now to look at the chart and think – that was so easy!

P-L from today:



TST stats:

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  #55 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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DATE: 9/24/13

DAY NOTES: No trades in combine.
Was looking to short early and after 2 trades did not fill, I went into my shutdown mode. Those early trades seem to set the tone for the day for me – when I get in and filled, I like to trade more the rest of the day. When I miss 1 or 2, and when those were winning trades, mentally it’s a big block for me. Seeing missed winning trades continue to be a mental monkey for me.


DATE: 9/25/13

DAY NOTES: No trades in combine.
Missed a couple entries early on and got frustrated. I didn’t want to be shorting much lower after first two shorts did not get done, but once I saw the trend reversing and creating a potential \/ shaped day, I did want to get long. Trade did not fill and then I was done. It’s frustrating because I have yet to really get some good trades all done in one day on the combine platform, but I know it’s coming.


DATE: 9/26/13
P-L: -$55.00
BALANCE: $51,212.50


DAY NOTES: Trade 1 – did not get filled on the first pullback I wanted to get long, so took the 2nd pullback long trade. And it puttered around for a bit till it broke support and took me out.

I planned to take another trade(s) in the combine, but price was incredibly slow early on. Pullbacks became very deep and price was in a range. One advantage to focusing on a market is that you learn her ebb’s and flows. You learn when she is willing to play and when you are better off giving her space. Luckily in soybeans, she’s usually ready to provide opportunities.

This also underscores the importance of pouncing when your method is on (which I have not done in this combine) so that days like today are just a small hurdle and not a brick wall. Overall I was happy with today's end result because I saw early on how the market was slow and did not force trades, even after taking a loss initially. It's very easy to think you need to get that loss back and then things can grow exponentially.

P-L from today:



TST stats, before today:

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  #56 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
Thanks: 23 given, 64 received


DATE: 9/27/13
P-L: -$90.00
BALANCE: $51,122.50

DAY NOTES: Trade 1 – Got a late start today and first trade was a playing a short breakout of the low of the day. Got in short and trade showed a quick, small profit. Since I missed the much better pullback entry, I knew this was a bit more risky so I trailed my stop once price broke the lows and had tested the same new lows multiple times. This should have been a nice short with a standard profit, but since I missed the entry, I looked for another reason to get short and the breakout was the next possible entry point. This time beans decided against a quick, stop grabbing flush that you can see often on the beans. The trade was a tiny loss, so I’m ok with the execution – I just needed to be in with my primary entry signal, not a secondary one.

After that, I got into a little funk since I missed the better entry on that short. Felt like I was about to force something so just called it a day on the combine.

P-L from today:



TST stats, before today:


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  #57 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
Thanks: 23 given, 64 received

DATE: 9/30/13
DAY NOTES: No trades in combine.
Had a doctor appointment today and missed most of the day, which was unfortunate considering the gorgeous moves.

DATE: 10/1/2013
P-L: -$427.50
BALANCE: $50,695.00


DAY NOTES: Tried to short from the open, had 2 no fills (thankfully), did not pull trigger on 3rd and ended up being a short near the high of the day at the time. Not sure why I didn’t put the trade on since the other 2 shorts did not fill so no harm. Gave up mentally but no trade plan reason to do that.

That immediately brought out the mental monkey and then I hesitated on the next short pullback, which was a quick winner… then watched the next short pullback work almost instantly into new lows.

I show 4 possible shorts from the open till 11am or so – none of which I got in and all 4 were profitable trades. This is the frustrating part of this business. A machine would have taken all of the trades and been able to show a great day. A human just knew better and avoided that.

I finally got filled on a short later in the day that (of course) was a full loss and did not show much profit at all. I entered quickly and somehow got in for 3 contracts so that did not help either. I wanted to scale in but all 3 got filled so the loss just got magnified. I’m not sure what I did on the platform to get all 3 contracts in, but I just wanted in and rushed to the T4 platform. The frustrating part is that the 2nd scale in worked just fine and would have brought the trade positive.

Regardless, one loss should not have made that much of an impact but it did to me because my previous shorts did not fill or I did not enter the trade. It just goes to show (once again) that if you cherry pick from your system trades, your previous results do not mean much b/c you’ve now created another filter – you.

And from there my mental state did not improve. Missing nice shorts early in the day and when things were moving to entering incorrectly on a quick loser really shook the confidence. I was ready to get in for the sake of getting in to try to minimize the loss but could feel myself watching every tick and looking for a reason to enter so just called it a day. Overall, my worst execution day this combine by far and very frustrating.

P-L from today:



TST stats, before today:



Ag's econ site today:

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trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
Thanks: 23 given, 64 received

DATE: 10/2/2013
DAY NOTES: I must have been skittish after Tuesday’s bigger loss, because I did not trade on the combine today. Trades were there and I had a mental block.

This combine is going to be ending soon, so I have to get it in gear and get trades on every day going forward.


DATE: 10/3/2013
P-L: -$60
BALANCE: $50,635.00



DAY NOTES: Got a very late start on the day after waking up with a nasty cold bug. I knew I needed to get some trades on the combine, but unfortunately only got 1 fill and it was a tiny loss.

Planning to trade Friday, hopefully can get a decent sleep tonight. Had I worked the combine platform better, I would not be in this position of getting trades on when not feeling well so it’s purely my fault. I know this is easy in hindsight, but I should be done with the combine and completed by now. This cold just reinforces the importance of focusing when things are in order so you don’t have to force it late in the combine.

P-L from today:



TST stats, before today:

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  #59 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
Thanks: 23 given, 64 received


DATE: 10/4/2013
P-L: -$2.50
BALANCE: $50,632.50


DAY NOTES: I did not get on the computer until 1pm EST, so I knew there wasn’t much time left in the trading day (since ag’s close at 2:15pm EST) and it’s Friday. I also knew I needed to get at least 1 trade on for the day. Tried a pullback long (way after the move up) and I babysat this trade closely. I knew the long signal was after the big stop run that had taken place already, so I wasn’t giving this much room to work. It was going to pop or I was going to be out quickly. I got a small jump after entry and just moved my stop, which was ticked. I’m ok with the day since I got going later and this was after a big run up.

Overall the week was disappointing as this combine comes to an end soon. I have exactly 1 week left in this combine. Early next week will dictate which direction I go with the remaining days – either pushing it hard to boost the profits or be content with a combine rollover possibility.

In the past I have gone for broke as I did not clearly understand the rollover rules (my fault). Can anyone clarify the combine rollover rules?

Thanks & have a great weekend.

P-L from today:



TST stats, before today:

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  #60 (permalink)
LogicalTrader
Houston, TX
 
 
Posts: 294 since Aug 2013
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The rules recently changed and looks like your combine started when the previous rules were in place. I dont remember those rules but your stats look good so far. The following picture is of one of my combines that qualified for rollover and you stats look better than mine in every aspect so I believe it should rollover:


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  #61 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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DATE: 10/7/2013
P-L: -$35.00
BALANCE: $50,597.50

DAY NOTES: Came into the day ready to go. Got cautious on two shorts that showed up near the open and both worked out nicely. So the frustration sets in. Can feel a little choppiness going on but system produces a long signal around 11:15am EST. I get long. And then sit and wait. Patience not being my strongest quality, I exit the trade with a small loss and start to pat myself on the back after sitting in the trade for approx. 30 minutes. Then around 11:50am, price does what I expected – tested the opening range and then blasted through the high of day. I was in this trade 2 contracts to start and had a pending order to add long. So what should have been a full $450 profit is showing a -$35 loss.

And that was my morning, which set the tone for the day and I just shut down the combine platform. Very frustrating end result for the day.

I just noticed my Avg Loss duration has increased (thanks to today’s bonehead trade) so I may need to fire off some quick, 1 tick loss trades to game the time in trade metric (that is removed on new combines). It stinks to be forced to lose 1 tick at a time, a few times, but I need the Avg Loss Duration below Avg Win Duration I believe.

I also want to remove the P-L figures from my T4 dom. Anyone know if this is possible? The constant watching of that I know is not helping the situation.


P-L from today:



TST stats, including today:

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  #62 (permalink)
LogicalTrader
Houston, TX
 
 
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trader000 View Post
I also want to remove the P-L figures from my T4 dom. Anyone know if this is possible? The constant watching of that I know is not helping the situation.

Click the first button (Properties) on your DOM up top. This brings up a tabbed screen. Click on the "Accounts" tab and then you can toggle what P&L values displayed (or not) on your DOM. Save your settings otherwise it will change back to what it was once you restart T4. I cannot take a picture using Jing because the window goes away when I click elsewhere so hope the directions I am giving are clear enough.

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trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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DATE: 10/8/2013
P-L: +$10
BALANCE: $50,607.50


DAY NOTES: I don’t want to concede that I have all the metrics done on this combine (except the ultra-important profit) but I have to be realistic too. I should qualify for a rollover, assuming I don’t get silly and wipe the profit out that I have.

Today started late. I overslept and then had some personal things to take care of so by the time I get to the screens, price has plummeted nicely and I missed a minimum of 3 nice shorts.

I also know I need to watch my TIT (time in trade) and get my average loss TIT down. This combine was started on the old rules, which had a TIT requirement – the new combines do not (unless it changed since I last saw). So I went into a little scalping mode – enter with a 1 tick stop. Either my entry was literally perfect or I would be out quickly with a 1 tick loss in seconds, which should help bring the TIT down. I inadvertently took a winning trade in that so my Avg Loss duration is still higher! I will have to game that stat back down tomorrow. I hope this is the reason they scrapped this metric, because I am now forced to take losing, quick trades – which costs commissions and real account dollars.

P-L from today:



TST stats, including today:

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 Silver Dragon 
Legendary Data Wizard!!!
Cincinnati Ohio
 
Experience: Intermediate
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trader000 View Post
DATE: 10/8/2013
P-L: +$10
BALANCE: $50,607.50


DAY NOTES: I don’t want to concede that I have all the metrics done on this combine (except the ultra-important profit) but I have to be realistic too. I should qualify for a rollover, assuming I don’t get silly and wipe the profit out that I have.

Today started late. I overslept and then had some personal things to take care of so by the time I get to the screens, price has plummeted nicely and I missed a minimum of 3 nice shorts.

I also know I need to watch my TIT (time in trade) and get my average loss TIT down. This combine was started on the old rules, which had a TIT requirement – the new combines do not (unless it changed since I last saw). So I went into a little scalping mode – enter with a 1 tick stop. Either my entry was literally perfect or I would be out quickly with a 1 tick loss in seconds, which should help bring the TIT down. I inadvertently took a winning trade in that so my Avg Loss duration is still higher! I will have to game that stat back down tomorrow. I hope this is the reason they scrapped this metric, because I am now forced to take losing, quick trades – which costs commissions and real account dollars.

P-L from today:



TST stats, including today:

@trader000

I thought when they switched over the old rules no longer applied. I remember the interview Nebraska did and I pretty sure he said if you had a old combine with the old rules that it would it would be switched over to the new rules after the new rule start date. I would check with support. You may be wasting trades for nothing.

Robert

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  #65 (permalink)
 xelaar 
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In your report metrics are no longer red and green. It means they are inactive and no longer counted.

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trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
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Silver Dragon View Post
@trader000

I thought when they switched over the old rules no longer applied. I remember the interview Nebraska did and I pretty sure he said if you had a old combine with the old rules that it would it would be switched over to the new rules after the new rule start date. I would check with support. You may be wasting trades for nothing.

Robert

Good to know, thanks.


xelaar View Post
In your report metrics are no longer red and green. It means they are inactive and no longer counted.

I wonder what I need to do then to qualify for a rollover. I thought I was on track for a rollover, going to be very frustrated if I don't!

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Pedro40
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
 
 
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trader000 View Post
I wonder what I need to do then to qualify for a rollover.

I think it is very simple now:

1. Be profitable at the end. Even $1 profit makes you pass. But this is for each product traded.
2. Make money 55% of the time. In your case 11 days for the 20 days Combine.
3. Don't hit the daily limit. Ever.

If I recall, that is it... Since you already have 10 winning days, you only need 1 more out of the 4 remaining days. Should be fairly easy, just don't mess up the daily limit...

Oh yes, and don't trade other products, because each product has to have at least 1$ profit.

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trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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DATE: 10/9/2013
P-L: -$35
BALANCE: $50,572.50


DAY NOTES: At this point I’m just focused on qualifying for a rollover of this combine. My overall performance was very disappointing. At this point, I should be getting ready to get info on going live. The market I am trading (soybeans) is not the problem. The methodology is not the problem. The problem resides in my head – mental monkeys as FT71 might say.

I got reply back from TST support. I am under the old combine rules:
Combine Rules Effective 8/28/2013 ? Help & Feedback Center

Now I just have to watch my metrics to see where I am at as I take some quick dings to get the average loss time down.

P-L from today:

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trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
Thanks: 23 given, 64 received

DATE: 10/10/2013
P-L: +$70
BALANCE: $50,642.50

DAY NOTES: It’s a balancing act watching the combine metrics that I am under and how many trades to take so I can qualify for a rollover. I think I will be ok for the rollover as my combine ends tomorrow. This has been a great process and I think TST should seriously consider keeping this discount going for people that journal their combine progress. Trading a combine is difficult, but the journaling forces you to be up front and center – both good or bad.

Today was just 1 trade taking a breakout to the downside. I was playing a quick whoosh of stops or I was going to be out. Got a small profit from that and called it a day. I was close to firing more than 1 contract but b/c of the impending combine rollover, I didn't want to jeopardize that.

P-L from today:



TST stats, before today:

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Pedro40
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
 
 
Posts: 563 since Jan 2013
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The posted stats from a day earlier shows that you got the trading duration stat fixed, good for you. But then you said you just had a quick winning trade and that might screw up this stat. So my advice for the last day, make sure you have a couple of quick losers ( a few seconds long), to keep the average losing time down.

It would be a shame not getting a rollover just because of this silly stat, that doesn't even count anymore.

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trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
Thanks: 23 given, 64 received

DATE: 10/11/2013
P-L: +$22.50
BALANCE: $50,665.00


DAY NOTES: FINAL DAY OF COMBINE.

Today’s goal was simple – get a profitable trade, take a few 1 tick losses. That would give me a profitable day (combine metric) + lower my time in trade (TIT) of my losing trades. While I accomplished this, I did get too cute for my own good in trying to lower my TIT. I decided to try to find the low in beans for my TIT lowering goal. Well, I got in the trade and in the blink of an eye, I lost 1 point on the trade and I only intended to lose 1 tick! I was quickly and abruptly reminded why I stopped trying to time lows and highs of the day. And also why I love trading breakouts on soybeans. For some reason, I wanted to play the low of the day and was promptly incorrect but took 4x the size of the loss I wanted on that trade as I had planned to take 2-3 more TIT lowering trades. At this point I just shut it down to make sure the day ended in profit and 2 quick, losing trades.

Overall the combine was decent but I clearly fell short too many days in executing the system. It’s very easy to say in hindsight, but I should have been able to pass all the combine requirements, including profit factor. But, that’s on me and only me. Soybeans and my trading methodology provided plenty of opportunities.

This journaling experience was great. I found it valuable to get my thoughts on paper and to be accountable in a public place. IMO TST should extend this indefinitely because the long-term impact can only improve traders. If the goal is to get people funded, a journaling discount incentive is 1 way to get there because it forces stubborn people like myself to really think about their trading day.

P-L from today:



TST stats, before today:



Note:
TST website shows my combine completed (before today's data is present) and my combine goes till 10/11. It says completed October 11th (today). So I'm not sure if their system is still out of whack due to the combine rule changes, but my combine was scheduled to end Oct 11th and I should have all metrics met for a rollover.

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  #72 (permalink)
trader000
Ohio USA
 
 
Posts: 65 since Jun 2013
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FINAL COMBINE TST STATS.
Got email that I qualified for rollover.


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