Feb 042011

I’m quite ashamed of my performance this week.  My tilt day on Tuesday messed everything up.  Without 3 trades where I used wider stops, I would have been breakeven for the week instead of finishing negative.  So lots of things to learn from this experience.  After my tilt day I traded the rest of the week on sim and I think that’s a good policy.

Overall aside from the stop moving, the results were pretty similar to the weeks before in that I’m missing trades and taking invalid trades.  Unlike the stop moving, which is 100% discipline & inexcusable, missing trades & taking invalid trades can happen.  It’s not always obvious real time if a trade is in the setup.  Part of that may be to having too complicated setups on my part and I will look at simplifying that by being more mechanical and pre-qualifying setups (writing out hypotheses) so that I can focus on execution while the market is open.

Now for some good news.. I only took 3 real money trades this week on Bund and was net positive.  So I was able to learn “for free” this week and not lose any real money.  However, the fact that I only took 3 real money trades tells me I’m still risk-adverse.  I think I need more confidence in my method and that will come with more experience (sim or real).

So still making progress but it’s taking a while.  I welcome all feedback, have a nice weekend.

  2 Responses to “Weekly results Jan 31 – Feb 4”

  1. Michael,

    perhaps the best is to focus not on too many things. I mean missing trades is just part of the game. This can not be played perfectly and everyone who tries so hurts in the end his or her performance. If you have a tendency to widen stops you have an important point to focus on. This concerns risk and money mgmt and therefore it is really vital. Overall it seems you get better and better. Perhaps you should simplify a little more, eg. trade only one instrument, set a trading time (eg 9am – 12 am 1pm – 5 pm) and stick to it, trade only 3 specific set-ups, no distractions (twitter or whatever)…

    Have an nice WE!

  2. Moving stops is definite no no, very dangerous. To keep myself away from the temptation I do a couple things. 1 – Use an automated strategy that places tgt/stop when trade is filled, and don’t move stop. 2 – Remember phantom said the earliest time you can re-enter a trade is as soon as you got out of your current one. You have to be sure you are not revenge trading and is actually getting back in on a retest that is clearly fluff, and be very sure that is what you are seeing and not what you want to be seeing. You also have to be able to re-enter even if the price is now worse than what you got stopped out at (i.e you get it, your stop gets run by a couple ticks and it pops back quickly in the direction that you originally want to go so now you have to pay up). This one I find is psychologically very tough to accept because I am pissed off and also full of doubt. Usually the reaction is hesistation, which is probably what the whole world is thinking as well which means it must be pretty good chance that it will work! So maybe force yourself to click a half size, chances are your original plan was valid after all. An alternative would be to enter on retests only. The upside is you will avoid the times when it just blows right thru your level, the downside is sometimes it doesn’t retest so you miss it, or it blows thru on the second attempt, so again you have to be careful with what you need to see on the retest to be sure it is a failed probe/stop run and not continuation.

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