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The Logical Trading Journal


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The Logical Trading Journal

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  #21 (permalink)
Houston, TX
 
 
Posts: 294 since Aug 2013
Thanks: 1,420 given, 757 received

Considering that CL is rolling over the next day or two and the triple witching in stocks, I will stay away from trading until Monday. Doesn't make sense to start a new combine with CL or to trade the last 5 days of the running combines until next Monday. If the markets move (like they have today and yesterday) and I miss it, then I miss it.

Back Monday.

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  #22 (permalink)
Houston, TX
 
 
Posts: 294 since Aug 2013
Thanks: 1,420 given, 757 received

Multiple reasons to reconsider my decision to wait until Monday.

Firstly, there was nothing wrong with CL movements today. The moves were exactly according to what my plan projected, so based on today, I believe the probabilities are back in favor.

Secondly, I thought about what I would do if I have a sizable account and I was already successful at trading. Would I stay out so long waiting for conditions to be "perfect" for trading? I probably wouldnt. So it is what it is and I will take what the market gives me.

CL Combine resumes tomorrow. Not sure about ES and NQ but most likely those as well.

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  #23 (permalink)
Houston, TX
 
 
Posts: 294 since Aug 2013
Thanks: 1,420 given, 757 received


After having reviewed my journal for the past 15 days of trading and the past many more days, I will incorporate the following changes in my trading plan.
  1. No change to entries - I think I got them right. Identify congestion, draw hi/low lines, place stop orders above/below depending on the instrument and time into session. If tight overnight session, look for breaks early etc. The e-minis make 1 or maybe 2 moves a day so watch those fake outs - especially in ES.
  2. Exits will change: The major emphasis going forward is to hold the trades as much as possible. The journal entries suggest that I have left a lot on the table on the good days. Cannot control the bad days too much so will focus on the good ones.
    • Will take stop halfway to par when trade goes in favor more than what my initial stop was. This allows re-entry if it stops out and sets up again as opposed to getting stopped out to the tick and then it goes towards targets.
    • Will trail as long as high/lows in favor - for longs HH/HL etc and trail stop accordingly. There will be times when I get low/high ticked and that is fine. Will be as conservative as possible in trailing. Will be prepared for such scenarios and not worry about them if they occur.
    • If initial move in e-minis keeps going past 10 central, will possibly hold position until close to end of session. If a counter move has to happen, its after the 9 AM reports and before 10 AM (generally, nothing set in stone), so on such days if the first move does not take place within the first 30 minutes, will mostly be closing the position before the report is out and either look for continuation or reversal.
    • When profitable early in the session, take the 2nd/3rd setups

Thats mostly it. Time to execute now

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  #24 (permalink)
Houston, TX
 
 
Posts: 294 since Aug 2013
Thanks: 1,420 given, 757 received

New CL combine started with a bang today. Mostly followed the rules. Fingers shook as I took the trades (didnt know a week long break could do that . CL showed pre open congestion from 107.60 - 108.15. Ideally, I wanted to be short below107.60. It couldn't have setup better for me. Got in short after open when it pulled back and on the way down at 107.58 with a 10c stop. Got taken out. And for whatever reason, went long at the same price - basically reversed which was actually NOT the dumbest move of the day (that honor is reserved for what I did in the ES). Took another 10c stop loss. By now, I was stopped out in a long trade when I should actually have been short at 106.58. Cancelled everything, took a deep breath and waited for another setup short. Didnt have to wait long. Shorted the break of 107.41 swing low and held on to it for 60c. I was shaking too much to hold on more. Will get better in a day or two - the shaking I mean. The plan was to hold until a swing high was broken, which happened around the 106.23 area.

ES was coming down from new highs before open and I was thinking long for some reason. I forced a long at 23.50 right at open for not much reason and paid for it with 6 ticks. Got a clear cut setup short from 20.50 and entered short. It didnt go much and the 9 AM report was due so got out with 4 ticks. Then came the dumbest move of all. I lost my concentration or started thinking too much or not sure what it was but took a long at 19.50 when the setup was clearly short. AND held this for an hour, pulled my stop back 2 more ticks (all big no-nos in my plan) and took the stop when all of this time I should have been short. Why I would not get out of the trade is still beyond me. Why hope takes over reason and logic is something I still have to control. Planned trade was short from 20.50 and take profits anywhere after 6+ points but instead ended up giving back 2.5 points total. 4 more days to go in the ES combine and today turned out to be the exact opposite of what I had prepared myself for.

It just seems like I choke towards the end and not sure why. I was 3 points away from combine target 4 days ago. Same story with the earlier CL combine. Got to work on this.

No trades in NQ. Nothing really setup so still have 5 days in the NQ combine.

Tomorrow is options expiration so I will not trade ES or NQ. Will trade CL though. Got to get that finger shaking to stop




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  #25 (permalink)
Houston, TX
 
 
Posts: 294 since Aug 2013
Thanks: 1,420 given, 757 received

The combine days are now mixed up so its not really day 17 in any combine. Just overall since the journal started. CL combine is on day 2, ES on day 16 and NQ on day 15.

Traded only CL today. Wanted to stay away from e-minis because of options expiration but just a note for future reference about ES - it was picture perfect with what it did. Slow grind downward all the way into the close. If the first congestion break from 16.25 was taken, it was a 14 point move and this would have been a good day in the ES because there was no HH formed by more than a tick in my charts and had I stuck to the plan, could have been a really good day.

CL movements were difficult today but slower and I like slower as long as it still covers the distance and it did. It took 5 hours and 5 minutes before the trade of the day showed up and fortunately, I wasnt out of bullets.

Tried a couple of longs initially from the break of the initial congestion at 5.55. Gave up 10c in the first attempt. The second long attempt went 32 cents in favor but per plan, I wanted more or nothing and I took nothing. After that, it was either long above 5.55 or short below 5.20. I went short at 5.20 and it went 22c in favor and stopped at par. By this time, I had lowered my short entry to the 5.08 break. It just chopped unbelievably between these 2 points and finally broke through. I was filled at 5.03. It went exactly to 4.50 and there was some heavy selling around that price but market did not budge even 1 tick lower. I saw 690 contracts hit the bid and it never went offer at 4.50, that was my clue to tighten my stop which I did and got out with 40c.

CL combine looking good so far. Up $630 in 2 days, need another $770 with 18 days to go. But, I have been down this road before and I am not going to celebrate yet.



Going to start getting into ACD (the logical trader, Mark Fisher) and Mind over markets (Dalton) over the weekend. @mfbreakout is the inspiration for this. I have become better at using only what works for me so this is either going to help me or not but wont take me back a step - that much I know.

Have a good weekend.


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  #26 (permalink)
Houston, TX
 
 
Posts: 294 since Aug 2013
Thanks: 1,420 given, 757 received

Wasn't feeling well today and wasn't sure if I wanted to trade. Came in to see CL pushing down from early morning highs. There was a perfect short setup from around/before 7 AM that I had missed and was already nicely in progress. Didn't push it and stayed away from chasing it. Just saw it unfold perfectly for close to 150 cents. Once that move was done, I didnt want to be in the market since most of the money was already made and lost for the day during that move.

ES had a pretty good pre-open congestion area. I gave it a go at 1701 when it broke up. It went a little but was quickly pushed down and got my stop for -6 ticks. I put my stop order in again at 1700.75 and got stopped out again, this time for 2 points. While in the 2nd trade, my charts formed a short setup. My stop was also my entry for my 3rd trade short from 1698.75. I was down 3.5 points by this time and knew this would be my last trade regardless of the outcome. Followed the plan and trailed it conservatively. Got out with 8 points at 1690.75. Cumulative gain in ES for the day was 4.5 points.

Did not trade NQ as I wasn't able to focus too much today.

At this point, I don't think I want to trade both ES and NQ going forward. ES suits my psychology much better. I can hold trades to let them develop (today's trade took 90+ minutes to get 8 points) and I am just fine with that. There is no stress trading this way. I have been doing the same thing with CL and I feel comfortable with just these 2. Instead of trading both ES and NQ, I think I prefer just trading more size in ES. So regardless of the outcome of the current combines, going forward, I will remain focused on CL and ES. I still have to figure out how to utilize the remaining 5 days in the NQ combine.


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


iNeo View Post
I can hold trades to let them develop (today's trade took 90+ minutes to get 8 points) and I am just fine with that. There is no stress trading this way.

This is a very important step in the process of becoming a consistent trader. Your statement here is exactly why I had to get away from the ES. Sitting in a trade going nowhere is the worst thing that can happen for me, so I moved to the ZS, where often I know quickly whether the trade is in the green or red.

Just as important (if not more) than system design is what market(s) that system is implemented on. It took me a long time to figure out the indexes and what I see as choppy conditions is just not for me. Luckily there are markets for all temperaments - from indexes to ag's to oil/metals/energy.

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  #28 (permalink)
Houston, TX
 
 
Posts: 294 since Aug 2013
Thanks: 1,420 given, 757 received

I still have issues with trade management. I cannot find a consistent way to manage trades, trail stops or take profits. Gave back too much today in both CL and ES.

My entries were all fine, nothing out of the plan. Most went more than a few ticks in favor and in hindsight, today was not the day to give trades too much room to run. But I didnt know that. I will never know that. Will just have to figure out an approach that is in between and stick to it.

All trades included, I left 10+ points on the table in the ES - 1 trade went 4.75 points in favor and the other exactly 6 points but I wanted more and it didnt happen today. Total time I was in these 2 trades was more than 5 hours.

Same story with CL today. After giving up 10 cents in my first trade, the second one went exactly 40 cents in favor but I wanted more. After this trade, I should have just called it a day but I pushed it and paid for it.

2 more days left in the ES combine and its a long shot now. Had I been consistent throughout the combine, I would be writing something else in my journal today. But this is a part of the learning process. Only I can make myself comfortable with my style of trading. Eventually, I will find it and keep it consistent. Meanwhile, my faith in my entries keeps getting stronger and stronger. I just have to figure out when to get out and eventually it will happen.

The biggest issue is still when I start my day down a little. Then I want more than is available and that's what happened today. What the market was making available was not enough for me today. And with the combine fast approaching its end, this behavior was amplified even more.

All part of the process. This is precisely why I am trading a TST combine and not my own account.




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  #29 (permalink)
BOSTON, MA
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: Tradestation, TOS
Trading: commodities, TF
 
mfbreakout's Avatar
 
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iNeo View Post
I still have issues with trade management. I cannot find a consistent way to manage trades, trail stops or take profits. Gave back too much today in both CL and ES.

My entries were all fine, nothing out of the plan. Most went more than a few ticks in favor and in hindsight, today was not the day to give trades too much room to run. But I didnt know that. I will never know that. Will just have to figure out an approach that is in between and stick to it.

All trades included, I left 10+ points on the table in the ES - 1 trade went 4.75 points in favor and the other exactly 6 points but I wanted more and it didnt happen today. Total time I was in these 2 trades was more than 5 hours.

Same story with CL today. After giving up 10 cents in my first trade, the second one went exactly 40 cents in favor but I wanted more. After this trade, I should have just called it a day but I pushed it and paid for it.

2 more days left in the ES combine and its a long shot now. Had I been consistent throughout the combine, I would be writing something else in my journal today. But this is a part of the learning process. Only I can make myself comfortable with my style of trading. Eventually, I will find it and keep it consistent. Meanwhile, my faith in my entries keeps getting stronger and stronger. I just have to figure out when to get out and eventually it will happen.

The biggest issue is still when I start my day down a little. Then I want more than is available and that's what happened today. What the market was making available was not enough for me today. And with the combine fast approaching its end, this behavior was amplified even more.

All part of the process. This is precisely why I am trading a TST combine and not my own account.

Attachment 124078

Attachment 124079


10 points gains in ES and you wanted more? Sounds like you are trying to recover previous losses from one trade.

Futuretrader71 - he has done many webinars at futures.io (formerly BMT)- with all his discipline and skill set is looking for 2-4 points.

Same with CL. On 80% of trading days if you can book 30-40 ticks book it.

Look at ATR of an instrument and try to consistently 20-30% of ATR before trying to get more ticks.

40 ticks on CL with 2 cars is $800.

800x12= $9600/ month

If you have bigger account like above 200K

10 cars x400= $4000

4,000 x 12= $48,000/month.

I am assuming 12 successful trading days in a month.

If one account is properly funded 30 to 40 ticks in CL is a BANK breaker. I will recommend you to stay away from ES. It's a slow moving , back and forth instrument. Focus on CL or other volatile instrument of your choice.

A trader potential target needs to be in relation to his stop loss. using 10 ticks stop loss to make 100 ticks not gonna cut it. 10-15 ticks stop loss and getting 30 ticks is EXCELLENT risk/reward. try to Focus on just ONE GOOD trade per day with full position size with full 30 ticks gains.

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  #30 (permalink)
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
 
 
Posts: 563 since Jan 2013
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iNeo View Post
2 more days left in the ES combine and its a long shot now.

Just take it easy and don't try to push it. You are still good for a rollover, so I would just make sure I don't screw up and pass this 2 days keeping the numbers green. And you would get your 2nd chance in the next Combine...

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