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Papa's Trading Journal
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Papa's Trading Journal

  #261 (permalink)
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papa15 View Post
What really is frustrating is to see the direction price should go, set up a trade to go with it, get taken out, and then see price go your way. I am trying not to use fixed stops, but putting the stop beyond a swing high or low (on the last trade, I had the stop 1 tick too high, price double bottomed and then went up, so my bad on that one) but it just isn't working.

What does this sentence mean to you?

There are some red flags that are issues I have also.

 
  #262 (permalink)
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bluemele View Post
What does this sentence mean to you?

There are some red flags that are issues I have also.

Bluemele
I am not sure I understand the question. I am sure my phrasing in the original was not very good.

On stops, I am working to get away from use of fixed stops (always having a stop of 8 ticks, 10 ticks, whatever) but instead focusing on trying to put the stop beyond recent price action turning points. If price subsequently goes beyond that previous turning point, then I am certainly wrong on the trade direction, and should be out of the market.

On the last trade yesterday, I tried to do that, but instead of being beyond the recent low, I put the stop at the low. Price then came down, double bottomed and reversed up. Had my stop been correctly placed, the trade would have been successful, and the trading day results would have been neutral. As I see it, my concept was correct, my execution very poor.

Do you see something I am missing here?
Papa15

 
  #263 (permalink)
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papa15 View Post
Bluemele
I am not sure I understand the question. I am sure my phrasing in the original was not very good.

On stops, I am working to get away from use of fixed stops (always having a stop of 8 ticks, 10 ticks, whatever) but instead focusing on trying to put the stop beyond recent price action turning points. If price subsequently goes beyond that previous turning point, then I am certainly wrong on the trade direction, and should be out of the market.

On the last trade yesterday, I tried to do that, but instead of being beyond the recent low, I put the stop at the low. Price then came down, double bottomed and reversed up. Had my stop been correctly placed, the trade would have been successful, and the trading day results would have been neutral. As I see it, my concept was correct, my execution very poor.

Do you see something I am missing here?
Papa15

the word "SHOULD".

It is an expectation of your brain to 'force' the market. When you say, "Should" (it is a word that SHOULD be removed from our vocabulary) it tells me that you do not think the market is behaving properly.


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  #264 (permalink)
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I support and encourage your decision to stop trading cash right now. I'd like to see you take a small break from trading - maybe a couple of weeks - then come back and focus on which method you want to use to trade and focus on sim trading that method with the best execution you can.

Record your trades in the journal like normal. Talk about entries and exists like normal.

On sim, it will likely come very easy to you. To understand this, you need to understand psychology and all the aspects involved with it and trading, but primarily fear. The best thing you can do to combat fear is to prepare yourself for the situation and practice the situation, building confidence.

At some point this must be done again with a live account, sim won't cut it. But I suggest trading 1 lot only, and I suggest limiting your trades per day to a small number like 3. If that is still too much pain (stop loss, max loss per day) then you might need to step away from futures for a while. You'll know if it's too much pain by asking a simple question like: If you take 3 trades a day with a 20 tick stop per trade, and you trade for 1 week and every trade is a loser, your stops equal 300 ticks. Are you prepared to lose 300 ticks right now in your account? If not, then stop trading futures and instead trade ETF's or even spot forex where you can better control and limit the impact of each stop.

Just my two cents.

Mike

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  #265 (permalink)
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I think I am making progress in my journey. When I get in a slump, or things just don't seem to be clicking, I stop trading real money and do sim trading. And, I review what I have been doing. I look for things that are not according to plan and look to go back to basics.

I don't like using indicators but find I can't go to a naked chart just yet. But, I can keep indicators to a minimum, and that is my aim.

If you have read this thread for a while, you know I have changed just about everything in my trading.. The big misstep I took was going back to real money trading too soon. I traded real money this week Monday through Wednesday. I had a little over 50% win rate, but the losers overwhelmed the winners, and from a money stand point, the week was a loser. I had planned to sim trade the full week, but over last weekend, I changed my mind. I do regret that. I don't want to repeat that mistake.

I am still sim trading, to get a better understanding of my new methods. Once I get a good handle on it, I will post the charts but until then, I am going to hold off on that. I am holding myself accountable to trade the sim account just as I would real money trades. One of the mistakes I made this week with real money trading was to overtrade. I downloaded the Excel spreadsheet Gordo posted on his thread for the 2 week Big Mike Challenge. I intend to use that from now on, not just for 2 weeks. I want to be selective in entering trades, make a daily/weekly goal, and quit. I have been very satisfied with my new broker (Matt at Optimus) but I am not anxious to make him wealthy I am for looking for efficiency in trading.

I hope everyone has a great weekend and that your weather is as good as it is here in NC.
Papa15

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  #266 (permalink)
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Big Mike View Post
I support and encourage your decision to stop trading cash right now. I'd like to see you take a small break from trading - maybe a couple of weeks - then come back and focus on which method you want to use to trade and focus on sim trading that method with the best execution you can.

Record your trades in the journal like normal. Talk about entries and exists like normal.

On sim, it will likely come very easy to you. To understand this, you need to understand psychology and all the aspects involved with it and trading, but primarily fear. The best thing you can do to combat fear is to prepare yourself for the situation and practice the situation, building confidence.

At some point this must be done again with a live account, sim won't cut it. But I suggest trading 1 lot only, and I suggest limiting your trades per day to a small number like 3. If that is still too much pain (stop loss, max loss per day) then you might need to step away from futures for a while. You'll know if it's too much pain by asking a simple question like: If you take 3 trades a day with a 20 tick stop per trade, and you trade for 1 week and every trade is a loser, your stops equal 300 ticks. Are you prepared to lose 300 ticks right now in your account? If not, then stop trading futures and instead trade ETF's or even spot forex where you can better control and limit the impact of each stop.

Just my two cents.

Mike

Mike
I wrote my post before I read yours. I agree with everything you said. There are several issues I am working on:
1. I must get my profit targets larger than my stop losses. I will not go back to live trading until I can successfully do this. I have known this for a while, but chose to ignore it. Not any more.
2. Reduce overtrading. I addressed that in my last post. I am going to limit myself to 3 trades per day.
3. I enjoy reading others threads ( I really do learn a lot from them) but I need to quit thinking their methods are better than my methods or they have the answers I need. The issue is between my ears and that is where I must focus my efforts.

Taking a break from looking at charts for a while is probably a good idea. I have not yet finished my comprehensive trading plan from the Upside Breakout course, I would like to review that material again, as well as review the YTC course material again (focusing on his practical psychology rather than methods), and I need to finish taxes for last year. Taking a break for a few days will be good to reduce my to-do list. Thanks for the suggestion.

Papa15

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  #267 (permalink)
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What a week to be away from trading. The world is changing before our very eyes.

It has been good to just relax and think things through. I am ready to start sim trading this upcoming week, although there will be some days I can't due to some conflicts.

Thinking back over the last year brought some things to light:

1. The most successful trade setup was the inside bar trade using the 15 min chart. I mainly traded that setup in July and September, and they were the best months of the year. During August, October, and November I mixed in some opening range and gap closing trades. Those setups were not nearly as successful and caused most of my losses. It seems to me if the inside bar setup is my most successful, it would not be wise for me to walk away from it. Yes, I need to work on finding a smaller stop to use, and will use all the info from price action to bias the direction I expect the breakout to occur.

2. When I tried other methods, I had mixed success.

3. I really like Thinkorswim, especially that it is written in Java. This allows it to run on any operating system. But ToS does have limitations. Its data reliability has not been as good as I would like. It gives you limited options on selecting the time frames and does not have range charts. Switching brokers was necessary. I have not had issues with NinjaTrader that others have reported, so I have nothing against NT. I have been using Sierra Charts recently and I really do like it. I have asked them to work on making SC run on Ubuntu and SC support is trying to make it happen.

4. I have had a tendency to move stops in the past. This has been a costly mistake, and is one of the major areas I am working on. It is always better to take a small loss rather than hope for a turn around and end up with a huge loss.



Anyway, I will be back, Lord Willing, and will concentrate on inside bar trades first, and then look at the trend trades. I will limit myself to no more than 3 trades a day. Once I reach my weekly target, I will quit for the week.

Papa15

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  #268 (permalink)
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papa15 View Post
What a week to be away from trading. The world is changing before our very eyes.

It has been good to just relax and think things through. I am ready to start sim trading this upcoming week, although there will be some days I can't due to some conflicts.

Thinking back over the last year brought some things to light:

1. The most successful trade setup was the inside bar trade using the 15 min chart. I mainly traded that setup in July and September, and they were the best months of the year. During August, October, and November I mixed in some opening range and gap closing trades. Those setups were not nearly as successful and caused most of my losses. It seems to me if the inside bar setup is my most successful, it would not be wise for me to walk away from it. Yes, I need to work on finding a smaller stop to use, and will use all the info from price action to bias the direction I expect the breakout to occur.

2. When I tried other methods, I had mixed success.

3. I really like Thinkorswim, especially that it is written in Java. This allows it to run on any operating system. But ToS does have limitations. Its data reliability has not been as good as I would like. It gives you limited options on selecting the time frames and does not have range charts. Switching brokers was necessary. I have not had issues with NinjaTrader that others have reported, so I have nothing against NT. I have been using Sierra Charts recently and I really do like it. I have asked them to work on making SC run on Ubuntu and SC support is trying to make it happen.

4. I have had a tendency to move stops in the past. This has been a costly mistake, and is one of the major areas I am working on. It is always better to take a small loss rather than hope for a turn around and end up with a huge loss.



Anyway, I will be back, Lord Willing, and will concentrate on inside bar trades first, and then look at the trend trades. I will limit myself to no more than 3 trades a day. Once I reach my weekly target, I will quit for the week.

Papa15



Papa,

When you have time, would you explain the concept of the "inside bar"

tia


AJ
Nashville, Tennessee


"Life On The Edge of SR"
 
  #269 (permalink)
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tderrick View Post
Papa,

When you have time, would you explain the concept of the "inside bar"

tia


tia
The inside bar trade is something that has been around a while. Jeff Castille brought it to this forum and covered it in his Three Setups Thread, starting in post 1. What little I know of the IB trade, I learned from that thread.

The other two setups are an outside bar (engulfing candle if you will) and a reversal bar (shooting star or hammer). The outside bar and the reversal bar are more difficult trades and I tend to let those go. The inside bar works well in CL using a 15 min chart. A smaller time frame chart will give more signals, but many of them don't work. A larger time frame chart gives fewer signals but they tend to be more reliable, although the stops are larger. Through real world, real money experience, I default to the 15 min chart. It takes patience to wait for the IB (some days there are none, other days can have several). Trading IBs definitely keeps you from overtrading.
Papa15

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  #270 (permalink)
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Back in the saddle again


Folks
I did sim trades this morning. I was 2 for 2, so that is good.

I was planning to sim trade through at least this week, and maybe a bit longer. I want to go slower this time, and focus on execution and controlling risk more than anything else.

I am going back to CL, using only 2 setups.
1. The inside bar trade, using a 15 min chart.
2. A pull back to the moving average on the 5R chart after a trend change on the 15R chart. This is the "A" trade from jinhar's Trend Trading in its simplest form thread. I am only looking at the first pull back on the 5R chart and letting the others go.

Today, I was able to essentially put these two setups together. To be honest, I was not at the computer when the first IB formed at 9:45. Once I got there, I saw it and started focusing on the 15R chart. I saw a trend change around 9:52 and the bar closed beneath the congestion to the left. I waited for a pullback on the 5R, entered using a 12 tick target with 12 tick stop. Target was hit, with practically no heat. Market showed signs of pulling back up towards the down sloping moving average on the 15 min chart. It appeared an inside bar would form at 10:15 (this is a dangerous assumption to make as CL can move quickly.) I saw a trend change on the 15 R and used the 5R to enter before 10:15. Market did form an inside bar, and price went on to hit my 12 tick target, again with little heat on the trade. I was a little less comfortable with this trade compared to the first as it was counter trend on the 15 min chart.

I already had a couple of conflicts later in the week that could have impacted my ability to sim trade and journal, and this morning my mom called to let me know an uncle passed away (don't be too sad, he had a long life but his health was not very good in recent years and his wife of 59 years passed away a couple of years ago, so he was ready.) I will be away for a couple of days with that, and in reality may not post until next week. Everyone trade well and profitably.
Papa15

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