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DW J1 Getting Started
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DW J1 Getting Started

  #1 (permalink)
Elite Member
London UK
Futures Experience: Intermediate
Platform: NinjaTrader, Tradestation
Broker/Data: Ninja Trader, FXCM, XM
Favorite Futures: Currency Futures, TF
Posts: 6 since Apr 2016
Thanks: 15 given, 4 received

DW J1 Getting Started

From an understanding that I must get my life on the right side of compound interest I have been cutting out finance and loans from my life in order to convert to cash. I am a homeowner, business owner, two kids and a wife - with two ex wives. I am about to sell my house in order to realise the capital.

Plan A is to trade, that would be best in my view. No marketing, no sales, no office, no staff, no clients. However if I can't make trading work I have a back up business. Which if I had to rely on, would be a disappointment, not the end of the world and I guess I would get refocussed on making that work!

I would like to become a professional trader, by that I mean my main income should come through training. It seems possible, there is a lot of conflicting information. Lots of people say don't do it, dire warnings of losing everything. Other people claim it is easily possible. I have the patience (and continue to learn I need more), I have the time and I have access to cash to finance trades.

I have paid for some training. I did three days with Online Trading Academy. I liked it, I thought it was good, useful information, although it was a sales pitch. Basically the thing for me, that would do it all would be their Mastermind option. However, at over £40k it makes no economic sense to me. Instinctively it feels too much. Practically as a percentage of my capital it seems too much. As a it massively reduces my capital it strikes me as the wrong turn. I mean I can make a lot of small mistakes and lose £40k, I suspect I would lose a lot less than £40k, but committing to this level of spend, would result in a definite loss of capital. unconscionable.

I have since found a supplier who would mentor me for about £7k with an annual program. Since then through the NinjaTrader eco system I have found one person who will provide a software package plus training for $1500 and I found another that provides mentorship, a complete suite, plus access to trading rooms for about $4k. I am thinking the later at the moment, particularly as they are letting me try the software for free and enter the trading rooms. I found futures.io by listening in to a trader on Youtube, who mentioned big Mike, who I then looked up and here we are.

Currently, in the capital preservation department I am spending none of my own money. Having said that I have blown about two grand through naive trading through a rip off highly advertised trading outfit. I got suckered and enjoyed every moment! They did it well and although expensive it did make life easy, it did what it said on the tin. I can't complain about the result, I could have stopped earlier! My fault.

I think that one of the main requirements of trading is patience. i.e. waiting for the right trade. I think this is a requirement for money management. I did not work all my life to give it away to the first guy who offers to take it off me! Having said that I have made a bunch of trading mistakes and I hope learned from them. I know a lot more about what not to do and I have increased my knowledge of what to do - and this is as a result of trading live accounts. I find the paper trading meaningless. I don't pay it enough attention and when it works out I am disappointed it was not a real trade! I still need to learn patience!

So I am running a demo copy of NinjaTrader, with a demo copy of FXCM and trialling software from Rightline. However, I am actually trading through MT4, as XM offered me an account funded with £20. I have done about 30 trades, won on most cases but let it run a few times, so I am down to £19.40! I had made a profit, and against my own judgement I could not resist continuing when volume had declined. I made losses based on my own missjudgement. The Rightline suite presented great trade ideas that helped me to recover my losses. I ran out of time. I installed it 2pm on a Friday afternoon. Itching for Monday to come around!

So although small beer, I am pleased with progress. I am thinking next week of adding £100 to £350 the XM account, where up to $500 XM will match my funds. I can't see the terms of the offer, so I am not sure what the deal is. However, I do think with some winning trades of larger amounts if I continue the run of Friday, then this could be a great deal.

Not detailed here, I have written out my objectives, a trading plan and spreadsheet for the next five years to give me an idea of what I am looking for and what I must achieve. I was thinking it will take me six months to get up to speed to become a pro trader, we will see.

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  #2 (permalink)
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  #3 (permalink)
Elite Member
Muswellbrook, NSW/Australia
Futures Experience: Beginner
Platform: NinjaTrader 8
Favorite Futures: CFDs on indexes
Posts: 14 since May 2016
Thanks: 37 given, 11 received

Whew slow down there. As someone who has paid thousands to trainers in the past and trade rooms, don't do it! Spend a week here and you will learn more than what you will in a year there. I have been following a friend who is currently trading with signals and alerts from these "pro traders" and he's losing money!

There is no substitute for getting a real education in the markets. No software, no trade rooms or alerts, just spend every day learning. Watch the markets. Luckily i only burned a small savings account to realise this and didn't have access to your kind of capital or i would have ignored people who gave me same advice because like you, I'm inpatient too. Im probably 6 months ahead of you and wish i wasn't so eager to be successful because I've made a lot of mistakes that's set me back a long long way.

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  #4 (permalink)
Elite Member
London UK
Futures Experience: Intermediate
Platform: NinjaTrader, Tradestation
Broker/Data: Ninja Trader, FXCM, XM
Favorite Futures: Currency Futures, TF
Posts: 6 since Apr 2016
Thanks: 15 given, 4 received

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Hi Dale thanks for your thoughts. I have continued to watch and slowly learn. I added more cash to my XM account and made money and then chased too many winners only to end up down. I am repeating my mistakes! A little frustrating.

I have found an excellent book - Trading Commodities and Financial Futures by George Kleinman. Really enjoyed it and found a lot of information that exists on the web, but the book gives it more credibility and I can flick forward and backward. One of the few books I have read cover to cover. Very good with some excellent stories sewn in. It seems to bridge the gap between a technical description of what it all about with a traders perspective - something that seems to be often missing elsewhere.

I have found the software and the training really usefull in developing my understanding of how to read a chart and when it is best to invest and not to. I have found that my winning trades have been more when I can see the useful indicators and the losing trades have been when I have just jumped in.

I am revising my thoughts on paper trading and to satisfy my thirst and inner need to trade I am trading by paper - and not losing - or making any money - but I am feeling a lot more comfortable about that then I was.

I have also come to understand that if you open an account with a lot of cash in it - you don't have to spend it - you get access to high level trading "rooms", it seems FXCM offers a high end facility, which apart from the cash on deposit is available at no cost. I am thinking of doing exactly that.

No major investment or losses or returns. Just setting up accounts still and watching.

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The following 2 users say Thank You to drclohite for this post:
  #5 (permalink)
Elite Member
London UK
Futures Experience: Intermediate
Platform: NinjaTrader, Tradestation
Broker/Data: Ninja Trader, FXCM, XM
Favorite Futures: Currency Futures, TF
Posts: 6 since Apr 2016
Thanks: 15 given, 4 received

Automated Strategies and Indicators

I made a "big" investment and signed up to the lifetime licence of NinjaTrader and a months worth of access to a trading room. I still have not bought any indicators, consultancy or other trading software. I have bought about £150 of books and I am pleased with them, even if one is basically full of chart setups that I could probably find for free online. I have a small funded FXCM account where I have spent a little just to be sure the system works.

I am now much more keen on paper trading as I have found even more ways to lose money through trying to follow along with the trading room strategies. I have also started to write my own strategies within NinjaTrader.

From what I read I set about the back testing and walk through tools, both of which appeared to work well, and with 60% profitability and a prospective 4% monthly profit forecast, verified both ways I proudly turned the strategy on - by paper trading.

The first strategy was: "anything" just to get the thing into an active state, so that it was paper buying and paper selling machine. I delighted in seeing it all happen hands free. I was appalled at how much was lost, and how quickly!

I realised quickly that the strategy needed to be improved and promptly got into a buggers muddle with it all. After two days I trashed strategy #1 & #2 now knowing that although the plan may be a great one, implementation needed to be more effective. I was starting in the wrong place.

I started strategy #3. As I had worked out the nuts and bolts and had two strategies to cull parts from I set about focussing on getting the ins and outs to a much higher standard, reasoning that larger and better trades might produce better results. So far, day one, I machine paper traded the cable - GBP/USD to make £98 this afternoon. I then backtested it where it produced abysmal results.

I worked out how to create regions in the code (look at a region and then put your elements into regions. I have a screen grab showing the regions from the code. I am sure I will end up with more regions. I am sure each region can do with massive improvement. I like the regional idea, as this means I a can work on specific parts of the code without affecting the other parts and this I think will help me in optimising the code.
Please register on futures.io to view futures trading content such as post attachment(s), image(s), and screenshot(s).

I would be interested in hearing if anyone else works this way, as it seems pretty obvious to me.

I am not an expert C# programmer, having never programmed in it before, however, I have worked extensively with PHP on the web in the past and it is very, very similar, just a different set of commands, and NinjaTrader has a lot less than PHP, so pretty straightforward really.

Also for now I am plotting the indicators on the screen and I have developed a dot and arrow visual system so I can see what the software is doing.
I have code to turn the visuals on or off for instance:
if (ShowDots == true)
DrawArrowDown("Trigger Short"+CurrentBar, true, 0, High[0]+TickSize,Color.Red);
ShowDots is set as a Property, so I can set it off or on from the control panel, when I run the strategy. Same for ActiveTrade shown here:
I use a the variable: "ActiveTrade" to set trading on or off: 
private bool ActiveTrade = true;
All the graphics elements and the trades are visible in the screenshot below. The dots are opportunities spotted and the red down and green up arrows are the opportunities my code has found (Find Shorts and Find Longs). You will see that either Long or Short Entries are taken in the bar following the signal.
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The Chart shows warts and all!
I have not sussed how to prevent the code from running a losing trade. I am using a stop loss command:
SetStopLoss("Stoploss",CalculationMode.Ticks, myStopLossSetting,true);
Where I can set the myStopLossSetting in the control panel also. I can't be absolutely certain if the stop loss is actually working. I would rather there be no trade

That's it for today. Comments, thoughts and pointers welcome.

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