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NW Trader's Journal

  #41 (permalink)
Seattle WA/USA
 
Trading Experience: Intermediate
Platform: TradeStation
Broker/Data: TradeStation
Favorite Futures: CL, YM, ES
 
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Posts: 99 since Sep 2018
Thanks: 132 given, 251 received


mtzimmer1 View Post
I consider myself to be a disciplined person as well and agree that nothing quite exposes your weaknesses in the way that trading does.

Congrats on those weekly stats! What does WLSR stand for? I have yet to hit a 70%+ win rate for any extended period of time, but I am on my way. Thanks for providing me with some inspiration to stick to the plan and realize some great results!

WSLR is Win Loss Size Ratio. Just a way of keeping track of that stat. So my average win this past week was $59.74 and my average loss was $49.58. Divide the first by the second to get the 1.21. Ideally, by having 1.5 or so WSLR, it allows you to actually have a 50% win ratio and still be profitable because your wins are worth more than your losses.

Yes, I had a great week for $$ and the stats, with a win ratio of 74%. However, my win ratio since I went back to Live trading 8 weeks ago is 52%. So, I'm going to need a bunch of good weeks to bring up my overall average.

I do my best not to get hung up on any one week, good or bad, because I tend to lose sight of reality if I do. I have to say, though, that I really felt beat up during those two brutal weeks and I appreciated the kind words and encouragement from members of this community. When people here give you a pat on the back, it's not like your Mom saying "Tomorrow will be a better day". The people here have been where we are, faced the same demons and know it's important to pick yourself up, recognize that trading is a journey, not a destination, and get back to trading.

Best of luck to us both next week!

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  #42 (permalink)
Seattle WA/USA
 
Trading Experience: Intermediate
Platform: TradeStation
Broker/Data: TradeStation
Favorite Futures: CL, YM, ES
 
NW Trader's Avatar
 
Posts: 99 since Sep 2018
Thanks: 132 given, 251 received

Monday, Monday...

Today was an interesting day on several levels, even if not a wildly profitable one.

Because I just made some substantial changes a week ago, I decided to stay with the Micros to reduce risk, although I did decide to keep trading CL as it is one of my primary markets. The changes I made a week ago weren't really a change in strategy but I added an indicator (UFO) that purports to show UnFilled Orders so you can see what your are buying or selling into. At that same time I changed my desktop layout and my trading timeframe. But, my price action strategy remained the same. So I had a good week last week and over the weekend my trial period for the UFO indicator expired and I had to decide whether to start paying monthly for it. I wasn't really using it for trade entry or exit, more like I was using as a bit more information prior to entering. For two reasons I opted not to pay the $89 monthly fee for the indicator. One, I'm not certain that I can't replicate the same information with either a DOM or a Market Profile of some sort . Two, I will soon be switching to NinjaTrader and the indicator is only available on TradeStation and TradingView. In any case, as I said last week, the indicator is just a temporary crutch until I develop enough experience to more intuitively know (or guess!) where other traders have their stops and entry orders.

Trading the Micros and CL is interesting because if I have a loser on CL it is dang hard to make up the loss with Micros! Still I'm going to stick with this through the week. I have to keep reminding myself that this week it's all about the ticks and not the dollars.

Last night in the Asian session I took 3 trades. I took two on the MNQ with one loss of 36 ticks and one win for 26 ticks. Then I took a trade on gold. Now, I traded gold a year or so ago, took some losses and got intimidated by it. It's funny how you get the feeling sometimes that a particular market "has it in for you". That's the way I felt about gold. But last night I looked at it differently. It was just another market, just another chart, the risk was favorable and the setup was clear. So I took the trade. The price stalled at the prior SL and I didn't like what I was seeing so I scratched the trade for +4 ticks. I found it interesting that I was not intimidated by the market this time around so I added it to my watch list. I must be learning something!!
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This morning I took 5 trades and GC accounted for two of them. It was a mixed bag on gold with one win of 11 ticks and one loss of 22 ticks. Still, it's just another market, win some, lose some.
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I took two trades on MYM that worked out nicely, pulling 33 ticks out on one and 21 ticks on the other.
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Finally there was a CL trade that did not go as far as I hoped but hit my first target and was stopped on the second contract for a total of 11 ticks. No image for that as I've maxed out my 5 attachments. As the Twitter-in-Chief would say, "Believe me, it was beeyootiful!"

So a mixed bag that resulted in a very small profit but was nevertheless an interesting day. I followed my trade plan on each trade but still need to go back and review the losers to see if tweaking is needed or if those are just the ones I have to give to the market with a tip of the hat.

Today's results including last night's Asian session:
8 trades
6 winners: $276.00
2 losers: ($246.00)
Net P/L $30.00 after commissions

Looking forward to the rest of the week -- happy trading everyone!

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  #43 (permalink)
Seattle WA/USA
 
Trading Experience: Intermediate
Platform: TradeStation
Broker/Data: TradeStation
Favorite Futures: CL, YM, ES
 
NW Trader's Avatar
 
Posts: 99 since Sep 2018
Thanks: 132 given, 251 received

Ready! Fire! Aim! WTF?


As the title suggests, today i locked and loaded, put my finger on the trigger, pulled!, and then realized I had neglected to Aim first! Well, it was almost like that. Really a day that is embarrassing to write about and yet I think these are the days when a public journal is the most help. I've got to lay it all out, put my day in written form so that I am forced to examine my actions and, hopefully, learn for the future.

To set this up, last night I found absolutely nothing during the time that I observed the Asian session. Recently I've been able to find at least one decent setup, but last night, nothing. Then this morning I didn't find any pre-opening setups so I waited for CL to open. And it opened with a thud, nothing. Naturally, I had no idea that the indexes would soon go nuts 10 minutes after they opened, but in the 30 minutes prior to the open, nothing. So, I was trigger happy, and I knew it, but that didn't stop me. After all, this was my short day and I only had one hour to trade before leaving for work.

I took a trade on GC that was in the middle of a trend channel. Now, I don't normally trade in the middle of a channel or range because that's where price tends to wander. But I did. Plus, the volatility was running at 15 ticks which exceeded my stop by 50%. Another no-no. And I paid the price, -20 ticks, -$206. And to add insult to injury, two bars later the price dropped away in my direction!
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And, sadly, I still couldn't help myself. And, of course, there was the need for revenge! So I took a breakout trade on CL. Mind you, I don't even have a breakout strategy! Nope, I'll trade a breakout failure or a breakout pullback but I've never developed a pure breakout strategy. Nevertheless, I took the trade. And I paid the price. -20 ticks, -$206.
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So now I've got that out of my system right? Of course not, I've still got to prove that I can trade, right? So I take a long pullback on MNQ. Obviously I can't make back my money on a micro, but I needed to prove I could make the ticks. The problem? Volatility was so high at that moment (117 ticks!) that I was lucky to escape with my hide. I did manage to get 21 ticks out before the price boomeranged back past me for a grand total of +$8.50. Woo hoo!!
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So I spent part of the day at work stewing about it and finally decided that it was actually pretty funny. I love the markets because you can't BS your way around and the markets take no prisoners. A very real and unforgiving environment and that is definitely one of the things that make trading challenging and fascinating.

Now, there is a bit of a bright spot. I came home this evening and sat down for the Asian session and in 3 trades had recovered over 75% of this morning's losses. Those trades will show up in tomorrow's journal.

So I'm glad I was able to supply some comic relief here this evening.


Good luck to all of us tomorrow!!

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  #44 (permalink)
Legendary Market Wizard
Dallas, TX
 
Trading Experience: Intermediate
Platform: NT, TS
Broker/Data: IB, Oanda
Favorite Futures: ES, MES, MNQ, MYM
 
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Posts: 522 since May 2010
Thanks: 872 given, 532 received

Good post NW, thanks.

BTW, I think this: "I've got to lay it all out, put my day in written form so that I am forced to examine my actions and, hopefully, learn for the future." will help your, or anyone's, trading tremendously. I can guarantee you it help my trading.

Good trading,
K

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  #45 (permalink)
Seattle WA/USA
 
Trading Experience: Intermediate
Platform: TradeStation
Broker/Data: TradeStation
Favorite Futures: CL, YM, ES
 
NW Trader's Avatar
 
Posts: 99 since Sep 2018
Thanks: 132 given, 251 received

Hump day....

Last night (Asian session) and today were a mixed bag as far as my P&L goes, but I feel like I am still inching closer to a sound trading strategy.

Last night I made 3 good trades in a row and then 1 stinker that took back half my profits.
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So I started the day on the plus side but quickly found I was making some entry errors. Although I don't have an indicator that tells me when to trade, I do use a few to confirm the trend and check volatility. What I've been finding is that I find a setup, check the trend, sometimes I forget to check volatility and sometimes by doing all this I lose sight of the big picture. That is, what is the price doing in context with the overall market structure. As everyone here knows, there's a lot of moving parts and I am getting better at coordinating all that but I'm still making mistakes. On some of the trades today I entered when volatility was way higher than it should have been for my type of trade. On the Asian session last night my one losing trade was made during the Tokyo lunch shutdown and price action slowed to a crawl. Someone in this community advised me a few weeks ago to watch the lunchtime closures on the 3 main Asian markets but I forgot about that until last night.

The other thing I worked on today was refining my entries. I've been a bit sloppy on those and I think that's what has contributed to some of my losses. Between the Asian session, this morning and even into the afternoon I ended up making 11 trades today. That's more that I usually do but it was spread over 3 time periods and by the time I got to the last 4 trades I felt like my entries were a lot better managed. So, even though I had a slight loss overall today I feel pretty good about the trading. Because the times and markets were scattered over a wide range, I am only inserting the charts from the last two trades today which did reflect better entries and better management. One was the MYM for +109 ticks and CL for +15 ticks.
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I am feeling that I may have to rearrange my full trading days. Two days of the week I have to go to work and only have an hour to trade, but the other three I can arrange any way I want. What I am finding is that the volatility occurring at the open and generally for an hour or so afterward is making it difficult for me to make trades. I usually trade from 5:45 PDT to about 9:30, then go to the gym. I am thinking that I may start going to the gym early and then come back and trade from mid-morning until about noon local. The final two trades today were made after 1100. Plus, when I have time to trade the Asian session the volatility there is acceptable except for the times when there is virtually no movement at all. Anyway, that's a change I am considering.

Today's results including the Asian session last night:
11 trades
7 winners: $570.00
4 losers: ($602.00)
Net P&L: ($32.00) after commissions

Hope everyone had a great day!

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  #46 (permalink)
Seattle WA/USA
 
Trading Experience: Intermediate
Platform: TradeStation
Broker/Data: TradeStation
Favorite Futures: CL, YM, ES
 
NW Trader's Avatar
 
Posts: 99 since Sep 2018
Thanks: 132 given, 251 received

Sticking to my rules

This is one of my short days with only about an hour to trade before leaving for work.

What I found this morning was that according to my rules (which I am actually attempting to follow!!) there was too much volatility in the markets I usually follow both pre-open and especially post-open. Some was typical and some was a result of the activity in yesterday's markets. In any case, I had nothing to trade at that point.

I used to follow some of the FX like the euro, pound and yen. Currently I don't even have a trade screen set up for any of them but I took a look at the euro. It looked promising and the volatility was right so I quickly set up a trade screen. I went short on a pullback and set my first target just above the overnight low. That target was hit for +11 ticks, then I closed my stop down on the second contract thinking that price probably wouldn't drop below the overnight low. Well, my stop was hit for +6 ticks and then on the next bar the price dropped like a rock right through that low! Of course!
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As always when a price moves on right after you exit, it would have been nice but........I am happy to walk away from my short session with a winner and 17 ticks.
Today's results:
1 trade
1 winner: $100.25 after commissions

Happy trading everybody!

Mike
NW Trader

There is no path to happiness. Happiness is the path.
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  #47 (permalink)
Legendary Market Wizard
Dallas, TX
 
Trading Experience: Intermediate
Platform: NT, TS
Broker/Data: IB, Oanda
Favorite Futures: ES, MES, MNQ, MYM
 
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Posts: 522 since May 2010
Thanks: 872 given, 532 received

Nice trading Mike

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  #48 (permalink)
Lenox, Ma
 
 
Posts: 171 since Dec 2018
Thanks: 214 given, 426 received

Real nice trading! Sucks to get tagged out just before the big move but it happens. Good trade!

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  #49 (permalink)
Seattle WA/USA
 
Trading Experience: Intermediate
Platform: TradeStation
Broker/Data: TradeStation
Favorite Futures: CL, YM, ES
 
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Posts: 99 since Sep 2018
Thanks: 132 given, 251 received


mtzimmer1 View Post
Real nice trading! Sucks to get tagged out just before the big move but it happens. Good trade!

Well, I have no one to blame but myself. Had I left the stop on the second contract where it was, or even at BE which I often do, I would have stayed for the party. I actually thought that since it had tested the low twice and flattened out a bit that it would bounce off the low and run up a bit. My bad!

Mike
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  #50 (permalink)
Seattle WA/USA
 
Trading Experience: Intermediate
Platform: TradeStation
Broker/Data: TradeStation
Favorite Futures: CL, YM, ES
 
NW Trader's Avatar
 
Posts: 99 since Sep 2018
Thanks: 132 given, 251 received

TGIF


Last night in the Asian session I found two trades on GC. The first one did not "exactly" meet my rules but I took it anyway and lost 14 ticks. The second trade was textbook as far as my rules go and I ended up +30 ticks on that trade.
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This morning I saw a nice setup on a BO of the OR in CL. However, I have not actually defined a BO strategy for myself so I just watched it. It did perform exactly as I thought it would, probably would have picked up 15-20 ticks on it. I will continue watching those types of trades and eventually may come up with a plan.

Nothing else really fit my plan until gold offered a pullback. I took that one for +15 ticks and once again the plan worked out.
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Then I had an opportunity in CL later in the session. As my entry got close, my indicators were showing that it was just barely drifting out of my criteria. But, I took it anyway and it lingered for almost 30 minutes, gave me a couple chances to scratch on the plus side, but I stubbornly hung on until it stopped me for -14 ticks.
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Overall, my trades today proved that the trade plan works pretty well. Even the first and last ones which were losers showed that if I drift out of the range, there's a good chance I'll pay for it. So, I am happy with my small profit for the day because I think I moved just a bit closer to becoming consistent.

Today's results:
4 trades
2 winners: $438.00
2 losers: ($292.00)
Net P&L: $146

This is the end of my 9th week back on Live trading and it was a net loss. Not a big one, but a loss anyway. However, I think I've been able to change a few things between Monday and today that have me feeling optimistic. I know I have said many times in the past that I think I've inched a bit closer, but I'll go ahead and say it again because I think it's true. I'm still profitable after the nine weeks but I am only just now beginning to close in on that key element: consistency. At least I hope so!

Week's results
27 trades
17 winners: $1392.75
10 losers: ($1552.00)
Net P&L: ($159.25) after commissions

So, thanks to everyone for the encouragement and thanks to Big Mike for the community, the contests and the prizes. I hope everyone has a great weekend!

Mike
NW Trader

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