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Wookie 's TopStepTrader Combine Journal


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Wookie 's TopStepTrader Combine Journal

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 chuckchucker 
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Hello Everyone,

This is my first thread on BigMikeTrading.com - I have taken a lot of useful information from this site and would like to contribute if I can. Of course this is a trading journal. It should be noted that it isn't my first combine and potentially not my last. My goal for this journal is to keep the writing to a minimal and to make it fun to read. I will add some cool charts because that is what I like to look at most.

My trading style is fibonacci with a strong emphasis on support and resistance levels. I mostly trade crude oil, but I will wonder off to the ES if there is a chart or setup I like. I'm hoping to trade the the 50k combine because I like the daily loss limit parameters more. Thanks and I hope this journal is a good one.

Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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Just wanted to update this thread. I won't be starting a new combine until I'm done with my current one. I blew it up sometime ago, but have some remaining days left. So while I exhaust that account I will submit some daily sim trading. Here is a summary of trades on my NinjaTrader account. I will see if I can find some good trades to post and give a small explanation.


Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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This was a 6 minute hold and the setup was on a fib fail. Price bull rushed thru the fib and then fell below the support fib. That support fib then became the resistance fib and price failed to reach it. It is easiest seen on the 15-30 second chart. I entered when I noticed that price failed to reach that fib line. I took the trade to the weak fib sitting above the yesterday close. I figured that would be a safe target.

After flattening out - I also did some quick scalps off the yesterday close, but only after I noticed some resistance/congestion going on there. Although, I'm not showcasing those trades because I will take several of those throughout the day.

It should be noted that I forgot to put in the yesterday high at .24.


Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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Held a trade overnight and it was partially stopped out but I closed the rest out when it got in the money. It hit a target I had set for a trade today. That is why my losses were so great, but holding over night has its risks.

Anyways, had some great setups today and they materialized, so it was a good day. I will post my favorite setups in the next post.


Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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Today price failed to reach R2 during the ETH session. I wasn't awake, so when I DID wake up I had a bearish sentiment going into RTH. I did put on a trade when R1 looked like it wanted to fail on a retest, maybe I got in too early, but it was profitable. I also closed the remainder of my short position that I held over night.

The next trade that I drew lines for was another fail of a fib. Price also failed to reach the yesterday high, so I took that as a good short entry signal and it ended up being a good trade as well.

All the scalps occurred when I saw price ranging tightly above the yesterday close.

It should be noted that this isn't the entire story as I saw it. I removed some indicators to make the chart less confusing.


Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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Today I'm posting my summary from my remainder combine (already disqualified, so just simming it out). Typically, I trade more aggressive in 1 account. A broken daily loss limit is usually the result, but today I wanted to play it more safe. I am ramping up for a new combine soon. Why would I blow up an account on purpose (you ask)? That's a good question troll , I don't "want" to blow it up. But I do learn from mistakes and I feel its part of the developmental process of becoming a thick-skinned trader.

Anyways, stats are below. Will be posting a great trade I had today in the next post.


Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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So this morning when I woke up I noticed that CL already failed to reach R2, but we did get a new high of the day. This gave me a slight bearish outlook, but if I am going to go short - I need serious confirmation to do so. On the next peak I got the confirmation I was looking for. We had an HoD FAIL and the reward/risk ratio was too great for me to not take the trade. So I did and added to my position after we rejected the R1 as well. I flattened out after 1 lot on a fib target I had. I flattened the other when price triggered my moving stop. Great trade!


Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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I was really satisfied with how today turned out for me. I started trading just my combine account (usually do this), but when I saw an incredible setup I got a trade in with my NT account because why not?

So I started out up with my combine account but got chopped up later on after pit open. Finally, I just put a trade on and held it because I had a great risk/reward setup. Probably could have been more patient.


Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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So this setup was one of my favorite setups ever. I saw that Crude Oil hit weekly R1 and possible rejection. Coincidentally, CL was also in its Daily R1. So 1 R1 rejection could possibly be 2 R1 rejections. This happened and I liked the risk/reward ratio enough to take a chance on a counter trade. Some other lines failed and that added to the bearish sentiment and it was an awesum move!


Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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Today was a volatile day. I only felt comfortable with scalp-type trades until I had a decent cushion to let a trade ride. So that is what I did. Also, I had a meeting that took me away from trading from 10am to 1130am RTH. It also took all my focus to trade 1 account but I did hold one on NT for a while as well. I like to try 2 different trading styles for the sake of learning.

I was too tired to post yesterdays summary and didn't like the chart anyways. IF I find a favorite trade I will post, but there were a lot of scalps. Most of my scalps were in the same direction, but it was my way of locking in profits in a volatile day. SO I scalped up the uptrend and down the downtrend. Selling where I thought it was overbought and oversold. I found this to be a safer approach today because the volatility was stop hungry today.



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 chuckchucker 
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I start my new combine tomorrow. I plan on sticking with crude oil. The combine is the 10 day 50k with a profit target of $3500. Ideally, I prefer to start out slow and try to get above $350 for the day. I would absolutely stop trading for the day if I get above $1000.

My CL analysis tonight has made me bullish for tomorrow, but that might change after I wake up. I may trade before pit open if there is a scalp or 2 to build a cushion for later on. I do not like to hold a trade going into pit open. Ideally I like to watch how CL reacts to the RTH session before I look for setups. Sometimes pit open produces a lot of volatility to shake traders out of their positions. I don't have the luxury to accrue heavy losses in a 50k combine. It would seem foolishly impatient to lose so early in the day due to the volatility of pit open.

Anyways, so patience is the name of the game tomorrow. I also have a work meeting at 11:45am. So I am only looking for ideal setups. If I don't like the chart; I might just not take a trade. Although, this is very difficult for me to do.

Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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Today I ended the day $-120 on my combine. I was trading crude oil only. It has been a tricky chart during the RTH session. News of Syria has made the chart uptrend during the ETH session and then during RTH the pattern changes from uptrend (buy and hold) to a range-type pattern (don't get chopped up) and I've been a bit frustrated trying to figure out how to trade it in professional manner.

Of course my bias for CL is bullish because of middle east turmoil, but it hindered my ability to take shorts when my indicators suggested those were the best trades to make. So long story short, most trades were long. Those long trades I anticipated a breakout to continue the uptrend. That didn't happen. And I had to scalp the rest of the day to try and get back to breakeven. I was down as low as -$450 when flat, but with a trade on I got as low as -$650. Today wasn't easy, but I have to give myself credit for staying a live for another trading day.

I talked to a few other traders today and feel better about tomorrow though. Lets see what tomorrow brings.

Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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I traded my combine for -$390. In CL, I tried to buy the peaks on long signals from my indicators in anticipation of a breakout up. The basis was CL going to have some great up moves today since the last two days were stagnant at best for the bulls. In times of war, that just doesn't seem like probable price action. So today was the day for me and I knew it!

Unfortunately, those up moves came much later in the day and my timing was, apparently, a coin flip at best. My risk parameters are tight on the 50k. Combine objectives need to be met and crude oil does not seem to coincide with these goals as of late.

To combat this, I have found more consistency in the equities with less exposure to risk in the NQ. I think trading the NQ and the ES is easier because there is less noise and the movements are more consistent. In conclusion, if I don't like CL's chart then I can always trade other products. The reward probably won't be the same, but risk aversion is my concern at this point.

Don't get me wrong but

God bless



Wook signing off..


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Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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Edit: Sorry for the delay, I had travel plans and hit the rode immediately following market close on Friday. Traffic in Chicago on Friday is nuts!

Ok, so today was my 3rd day on the 10 day 50k combine. Since my first 2 days of the combine were losing - I decided it would be prudent to select a less volatile instrument to trade. I also wanted to reduce my overall exposure to risk, so I decided that I would trade the Nasdaq. Today ended up being my 1st profitable day trading. I ended up $330 on the day. I know I'm not on pace to get funded, but have 6 days left and could still win a rollover combine. Although, I will be pushing this combine to get funded.

This weekend has given me a moment to reflect on what needs to be worked on; to become a better trader of course. I understand that I need to increase my hold times within a trade. Sure in some trades taking profits fast is a great idea. Although, taking profits too fast becomes habitual and that adversely affects the reward to risk ratio. Reward to risk ratio is crucial for long-term success in trading. In my experiences, I have to have an 80% win/loss ratio to scalp profitably. That doesn't happen everyday for me.

This leads to why I decided to trade the Nasdaq. It moves slower than crude oil as of late (less volatility). The moves are drawn out, so I have to hold my trades longer. The NQ moves are more consistent with my indicators (less false signals). Contracts generate only $5 per tick. That means I can have a greater stop loss on trades I like and can scale a trade more effectively if there is a trade I really like. Im notorious for entering a position too early; usually because I see that it failed to reach some s/r line and I like it for a large sum of ticks. Also early trade entries requires holding a losing position until it becomes profitable. This will test your confidence and patience.

One of the improvements I have seen lately in my trading has been my conduct when I have an open trade in the market. Adding contracts when price action is adjusting well to my trade has worked wonders in the NQ. My results have been mixed with crude oil. For example, I can add 4 lots to an NQ trade and make $20 per tick. 2 lots in CL will run $20 per tick. This means I have 4 chances to scale in for a good trade entry price in NQ. In CL, I have 2 chances to get a good entry price on a trade. I call it aversion to risk. When given tight risk parameters; it has to be in the forefront of your thought process if you want to become funded. If I can't get a profitable trade on 4 contracts scaled - then I really need to re-evaluate why I'm doing this. FYI, 4 contracts scaled in CL would be considered suicidal with 50k combine risk parameters.

Sorry for the wordy post. I'm trying to get back into the trading mindset. I've been on a 3-day vacation.

Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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This week, my emphasis is on getting back into profitability in my current combine. I'm -$150 roughly.

Scenario #1: I have several more profitable days, in which I would take a shot at getting funded on the 9th-10th day in the combine. I would probably have to move to an instrument like CL; where big gains are quicker to achieve. Of course, my daily loss limit would be the amount that would allow for a rollover. For example, if I have $52,000 and have 1 day left in my combine. My daily loss limit would be $1900. Thus allowing for a rollover.

Scenario #2: I continue to have just as many good days and bad days. My 50k combine account is valued at $50,300 and have 2 days left to trade. My goal would be to have a daily loss limit of $150 for each day. IF on the 9th day I make $440. THEN on the the 10th day my daily loss limit would be $560 or something, so I don't accidentally push my balance into the negative.

So, days 4,5,6 are going to be chipping a way into the positive. The goal is to have my 10th day be my 'Super Bowl' of this combine. If I don't have a cushion to work with on day 10 then it won't be much of a super bowl and more like a stupider bowl.


Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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Today I was -$85. I got chopped up early in the morning in the NQ and did take 2 CL trades. 1 was profitable and 1 was a big stop out so I was -$160 in CL today. I couldn't afford to take those loses in CL and as the pattern developed; it became evident that I missed the big move of the day anyways. So that put my mind at ease and I focused on the equities.

I was down as much as -$850 while in a trade and -$470 while I was flat within the intraday. I was able to get in long near the bottom and was fairly certain that both NQ and ES would retrace on the day. A big down move at the beginning of the month and week seemed highly probable that it would come back to some level of value. Sure maybe the rest of the week will be bearish, but it can't make the whole weekly move on the 1st or 2nd day (i forgot its tuesday) of the week. Anyways, so I went long and it was my best move. This trade brought my daily balance back to near b/e.

My weaknesses today were:
- I woke up really tired and it caused some confusion when reading charts.
- My computer locked up and that forced me to hard restart my computer.
- When I was down -$400; I became more impulsive in my trades to 'try and get my money back'.
- I took some trades in CL without breaking down the pattern with my indicators.
- My entries were too early
- My exits were too early
- Recognizing a great chance for a move in CL, but not taking the trade.

My strengths today:
- My patience within the trades. My hold times are increasing!
- Stops were placed at strategic levels.
- No miss clicks on the DOM.
- Recognizing a counter trade opportunity and taking the trade.

Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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I'm down -$228 on this combine going into day 5 of my combine. That means I need to average $750 per day roughly. I will continue to look for safe setups in the NQ. if I find a CL setup that I really like - I might open things up a little bit. It will depend on what my indicators tell me and how I'm trading, but if I'm running hot - I will try to let my profits ride!

I need to have a big day soon.

Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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Shoot, today I did it. I blew up my account on a foolish trade. I felt the pressure to have a highly profitable day to get my combine in range of hitting its profit target. I over-leveraged my account and put on a scaled order in the NQ. I guess I assumed it was like crude oil in that it knives up and down quite a bit. Unfortunately, equities have 1 or 2 good moves a day and I got caught on the wrong side of a good uptrending day.

Not all is lost though, I have learned an invaluable lesson today about the case for patience in and out of a trade. There is amazing setups that happen, but they may not happen everyday. Being able to wait for those trades and understanding how the pattern is forming (within the day) will NOT lose me money. That is the key for me; having the bullets to fire when there is a likely target in sight.

From here on out, I want to finish my combine trading crude oil. I really don't have anything else to say. I lost today because I got impatient and wanted to put on a trade. Tomorrow I'm going to reorganize my office I think. I'm going to rearrange it so I can have the charts up, but have other things to do as well. For example, I have a real dartboard. I have an xbox 360 too, also have some dumb bells. You know, stuff to keep me busy while I wait for those great setups. I know what a great setup looks like. I just have to wait for it. It's like finding your dream girl, metaphorically speaking of course. You know what she looks like and her personality, but if you aren't willing and/or able to train yourself to wait for her. You are going to miss the move to get her because you were busy blowing your wad on some toothless bimbo that shits on your couch anyways. Long story short, I need to work on myself more and be more picky with my trades as well. Looking for a great weekly trade might be a good place to start.

Football will be a nice distraction too; god I miss football.



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 Big Mike 
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I was worried about that from your prior post.

You simply cannot force it.

TST is good for discipline and risk. You should have focused on not blowing out the combine and just try to get the rollover. That is useful and practical in the real world of trading.

Many days come and go where your trades don't amount to much - Just treading water somewhat. That is normal in my experience. Then on the right day you can really capitalize.

I would never measure profitability on a daily basis and actually not a weekly basis (somewhat) but instead a monthly basis.

I think the new combines give you a month? 20 days?

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 chuckchucker 
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@ BigMike, I agree with you. I think you worded it correctly and I don't need to add anything to your comment. I'm looking forward to my next combine. I'm saving up for the 150k and will attempt it on the 20 day combine. This should buy me time to find those perfect setups and maximize profits with more lots. IF I lose I lose, but at least I tried.

Today, I traded even though my combine is a bust. I was -$665 on the day. My big screw up today was trading before I was even awake and alert. It's a bad habit because there is a lot of unknowns early in the morning. Adding sleepiness on top of it doesn't help. So most of my losses occurred within the first 2 hours of trading and then after that I traded pretty good. I was pretty much up against the daily stop limit most of the day and that kept me from getting any long term setups going. Most trades ended up being scalps to try and get back to break even on the day. I was able to put together 14 consecutive winning trades, so there was some positive things - moving forward...

For tomorrow, I want to focus on no scalps for the first hour after pit open. The goal is to follow price action and to figure out the pattern and look for great long-term setups. I won't get into a trade unless there is the potential for a great trade. After the volatility cools off; then scalps are fine. The emphasis is to not burn through my daily loss limit before a great trade.

I like emoticons.

Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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On this day 7 (Friday) of my combine I got it wrong and ended down -$995 on the day. My net P/L started down and that put my trades on the defense and I wasn't getting out at the right times because I was so certain that crude oil would stop uptrending and run on the bear more. Obama had a spontaneous press conference in regards to Syria. That 'news' made my technical indicators work in the most obtuse fashion. I felt I was a wookie in combat with the emperor in a metaphoric Star Wars way. Obviously, Obama's jedi mind tricks worked and I was sadly defeated single-handedly.

In any event, I have learned that I am not experienced enough to win on news-driven markets. It would be more cost-effective if I just watched the chart develop, but sit on the sidelines until news coverage is done.

Later in the day, when all the dust cleared from my reckless ambition - I found a technical pattern on Fridays action. Although, during the trading day I didn't recognize it because my judgement was clouded from being in the negative. Watching the news unfold didn't help either. I should just not trade it until I gain a bit more experience.

Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
Chicago
 
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On this Monday, I traded up +$1030. I quit when I got above the $1000 mark because I wanted to get the acheivement badge for my trade profile on the TsT website.

My mentality going into today was to trade the most probable of setups and get that cushion going. No need to take a trade if I didn't like it. The desire to make money wasn't as important as the desire to take a dumb loss. So it took a while to get the first few hundred. I distracted myself from the mouse by playing a few video games. As the day progressed I got a better understanding of the pattern as it developed and key levels that price was bouncing off of. After the prerequisite of having a positive net p/L and getting a firm idea of how price was moving; I got a bit more aggressive and that is when my net p/L started knifing up.

Obviously, happy about my performance today and definitely thought I was overdue for a good day. This combine has exploited some big weaknesses in my trading. Lack of experience trading news-driven days is one that comes to mind off the top of my head. So for that I'm humbled and hope this is a turning point in my trading development.



On a side note, football started! I won my first 2 fantasy football games and the chicago bears won too! I even subbed on softball team and helped them win 2 playoff games, so I do win at somethings !

Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 Big Mike 
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chuckchucker View Post
On this Monday, I traded up +$1030. I quit when I got above the $1000 mark because I wanted to get the acheivement badge for my trade profile on the TsT website.

Nicely done!

Oh and BTW...

Go Cowboys!

Mike

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 chuckchucker 
Chicago
 
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Thanks BigMike maybe I could come up with a webinar when I get some more street cred, .

Woah, I cannot believe it is already day 9 of this combine. Today was Tuesday and let me tell you - it was boxing match. I ended up +$635 on the day. Stats detailed:

Date-- Net P/L-- Comm/Fees-- Trades-- Won/Lost-- Win %-- Consecutive Win/Loss
Tue, Sep 10---- 635---- 405---- 78---- 59:14--- 81---- 10/5


Today was a news-driven day again. Russia and Syria were working on their diplomacy efforts to give up chemical weapons. So CL downtrended quite a bit in the ETH session and definitely ran lower at the beginning of the RTH session. I noticed that an inverted head and shoulders pattern was forming and looked for s/r lines to support that hypothesis. I ended up correct and made some money. Although, this wasn't before I lost quite a bit and was near my daily loss limit. At the apex of my daily loss, I was down -$750 before I went on my big run up. Commissions were more than I would have preferred, but when your trading only 1 contract most of the day it's going to take a bigger piece of the pie.

My weakness today was the stop loss factor. I had 1 contract that lost 30 ticks and had scaled in that order up to 3 lots. So that entire trade cost me well over $500. I don't like to be that exposed to the market in a live trade going bad. I stopped out when I did luckily. It would have bled plenty more. The trade would have been profitable - price came back, but I would have hit my daily loss limit in the interim. Long story short, stop the bleeding. Use indicators as guidance when in a trade. It will save.

Tomorrow I won't be able to trade the morning open in CL. I have to go to the DMV to renew my drivers ID. I will probably trade the combine though. I would prefer to finish it and start on a clean slate. I'm expecting a news-driven open though because of Obama's press conference tonight. I prefer to miss the open because of this. Its better for me to read the pattern after it had 2-3 hours to develop in the RTH session.

I will post the combine summary in an image format after tomorrow. Sorry I haven't posted more images. It gets to be a lot of work and not as fun to post when your in a slump.


Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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Edit: I will post my trade summary tomorrow.

On this day, Wednesday, it was my final combine day. I ended down -$965. I was actually up on the day until I decided to try for a home run trade at the pit close. It was profitable several times, but I wanted to make enough to bring my combine back to break even. It didn't go that way and price hit my stop and that wraps up this combine.

Otherwise, I thought I traded fairly decent. It was an inside day, as far as price action goes. So there wasn't any serious action. No big news from Syria. There was an EIA petro report, but I wasn't around to trade that. I made it a point to not trade news anyways. The fib lines worked well today also. Although, I did take a big stop when there was a fib near the High of the day. I entered to go short and I should have waited because they ran the stops above the HoD.

Where do I go from here? Well I know I am capable of big days. I just need to be sensible on when I decide to trade. Like what part of the day and when markets aren't reacting to news. Minimizing my losses when price goes against my trade will keep me in the game longer. No one is right 100% of the time. If I get the opportunity, I would opt for the 150k combine over 20 days. Of course, I would have to be comfortable trading more contracts.

Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
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Here's the trade summary of my combine from start to finish. I will be doing another one soon, so I will periodically update this thread with status reports. I prefer to update after good days and procrastinate on my bad days. Thats usually how I operate - happy to report good news! Thanks for the views it keeps me motivated to post.




Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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 chuckchucker 
Chicago
 
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I haven't updated this lately. Here is a random sampling of my trades as of late. Its a practice account on T4 trading platform via TsT.

Today was a slow day on crude oil chart. My attention wondered off so I started trading Gold. I traded gold pretty well and so kept trading it.





I was surprised how friendly the movements were in gold today; despite it being New Years Eve. Anyways, since my last big combine I have been researching my butt off trying to adapt my trading plan to my trading style. Its probably not a good idea to have a trading plan that conflicts with your trading tendencies.

Happy New Years!

Alligators and crocodiles are not the same. A lot of people don't know that.
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