Tuesday, December 30, 2008


Continuing to trade live in sim this week for practice sake. Even through the un-ideal low volume conditions both methods are making consistent profits as they should. I've placed a large emphasis on making sure what works today, worked 10 years ago, worked in the volatility post 9/11, the low volatility lull from 04-06, and through the high volatility we've seen in the past two years. As far as i'm concerned, its as important to know your method works now, as it is to know it worked in a completely different market 2 years ago, 5 years ago, 20 years ago. Markets change, a robust method should continue to function through them all and both methods have proven to do just that.

As far as trading goes. Rather than the January 2nd start date previously discussed (this Friday) i've decided to hold off until Monday. Friday will most likely be low volume as many traders will be taking the day off through the weekend. Thus, i'll start up fresh on Monday and let the chips fall where they may. Also, i'll keep a Excel spreadsheet that i'll post screenshots of daily. I'll post a Broker confirmed blotter of all trades at the end of the month to confirm the validity of my daily activities. However, its a much larger process to blur and crop out account numbers every day than it is to just post a record of trades taken from a worksheet.

Enjoy New Years and we'll see you all back here at 2:45PM on the 5th!

Monday, December 22, 2008

December 22nd Update

Just a small update. Today I wired all of the funds to my trading account. Everything is coming together and should be ready to go in January. I spent the weekend refining my last setup and its stop management and entry filter and came up with some really great stuff. This setup is proving to be that perfect last piece to the puzzle.

The type of trading I do right now is precise and effective, but lacks the ability to jump into big blow away trends... at least it did. This fifth setup is so robust i'm actually going to record it as a second methodology when I post my results daily. But lets just say this... its the most promising method i've developed in a long while and i'm constantly surprised as how well it performs each day. Over a random 3 day period last week and last month the system pulled out over 1000.00/contract in profits and above a 60% win rate each time.

I've attached a chart of today's trades from both methods combined. As you can see, we didn't win them all but what we did do is win the majority, take more profits than losses, and came out on top like we do most days!

Today's Results: 7 Wins, 2 Losses, Net: +9.75, +487.50/Contract

Basically, i'm getting everything ready to go and i'm just making finishing touches on everything in preparation for my January launch date. I'm VERY optimistic, but well aware of the daunting task that lies ahead. But i'm well prepared and ready to take on what the market throws my way and excited for the start day. I feel like i've spent the last 3 years building my business and its finally ready to open its doors to the public. It should be an interesting ride and I invite you all to watch!

Happy Holidays!

Friday, December 19, 2008

December 19th Update

Pretty active and smooth session considering it was quad witch today. Had some nice follow through on trades and overall a very successful session. Took 4 standard method trades, 3 off the 1 minute and 1 of the 620T for a total of 4 points. Not huge, but not embarrassing either!

I most likely won't be posting at all next week as i'm taking it off to be with family for the holidays. I'm wiring the remainder of my funds to my trading account on Monday so we'll be all set for our January 2 start date. I'm cautiously optimistic and hopefully by that time I will have this 5th final setup in concrete terms that can help us make an impressive break out of the gate!

Trade Results:


Weekly Results (Not including FOMC event):


Thursday, December 18, 2008

December 18th Update

Pretty boring day. Lots of pars, two losses and one win. I spent the majority of the day working on a new setup and it looks to be pure gold. So i'm going to continue working on that for the rest of the week as it looks more promising than most anything i've ever seen before. It did +25 points on the 1 minute chart in the past two days alone! Low risk, high reward, lots of trades, lots of winners. I like!

Trade Results:


Wednesday, December 17, 2008

December 17th Update

Good day today! Yesterday I did take a long after the FOMC had been released that was good for 250/per but since I said I wasn't going to trade yesterday we are going to leave it out of the results. Typically about an hour after the FOMC things are pretty good to trade so thats what I planned on and it worked out nicely.

So last night I took a look at some tick charts. I used to trade tick charts exclusively. A lot of the moves that 'blow away' from me on a time chart are able to be captured on the tick chart. So I added one to my workspace today and have been using it to trade off of in addition to my 1 minute chart. We'll see how the results are but I think it should be on par with the 1 minute and should serve as a great addition.

So as far as the trades went... 4 Trades. Took a double top off the 1 minute this morning for 337.50/per, two par trades in between off the 1 minute and 620T and then caught a nice reversal for 225/per this afternoon during the selloff using the 620T. All in all, a well managed and executed day.

The illustrated view of some of the trades:

Trade Results:


Tuesday, December 16, 2008

December 16th Update

FOMC day today. Which means no trades for me. I take this day off every time. Things are dead and sloppy ahead of the announcement, and jolted and erratic after. I feel this type of price action erodes the edge of a typical trading day so I leave it alone.

Spent the day honing techniques and setups and doing backtesting. Fun fun fun!

Monday, December 15, 2008

December 15th Update

Executed well today, most things just blew away in spurts today. I got caught inside a nasty wedge in the 3 minute this afternoon and it cost me 137.50. Two trades, 1 par, 1 loss. Shit happens, not a big loss (much smaller than all of my winning days) so we move on to tomorrow!

In other news, I completed my testing on the 3 minute charts and I will be trading 3 minute signals live in January as long as they are under my $ Risk cap. It added over 2k in baseline profitability with the 3 minute signals in addition to my 1 minute trades. If I was allowed to take every trade there was over 7k in profits :). This will be my last week mock in the ES as I intend to take next week off for the holidays. I'm also thinking of trading the NQ because it works even better with my method due to the nature of its moves (less backfill than the ES) but I think i'll hold off on that until we see what the results are like in January, and if I even make it through the month without having to print out a resume... At any rate, worst case, monitoring 4 charts, is a piece of cake in comparison to the 48 I use to monitor on a daily basis!

Trade Results:


Thursday, December 11, 2008

December 11th Update

Not much to report. UBER SLOW DAY in the S&P today. I was bored out of my mind. I would post up a report for earnings but they were just +.25 today (1 tick) or 12.50 on one trade. Everything else blew away from me. There was a salty little 3 minute trade I took for +8.5 but i'm not recording 3 minute trades here because i'm pretty sure i'll just be trading the 1 minute for starters in January. Typically the larger timeframes require larger risk on the trades because the swings are larger. That being said, the 3 minute trade today was actually smaller in risk than some of my 1 minute trades so i'll be review all of my data and see if its worth taking both timeframe signals come January.

Trade Results:


Wednesday, December 10, 2008

December 10th Update

Today was a great day of trading. I came in, executed my plan without flaw, and had some great trades. The one "loss" was a par trade. Tradestation regards par trades as losses due to commissions. As far as i'm concerned a par trade is a winner because it means my system got me to a point of no risk and the trade just didn't work. That being said the par trade did stop me out by 1 tick and then went to my target. Thats life right? I also missed a trade around 9:20 AM this morning because I was a super tired and slept in an extra 20 minutes. C'est la vie right? But probably realistic because you won't get them all. One or two are gonna slip through your fingers during the week due to something and thats just trading.

Long story short. I'm very proud of my performance today. I saw the whole picture I was ready and anticipating my positions before they appeared and I pounced on every opportunity given with perfect management. The results of that type of trading are shown in the profits.

Trade Results:

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Do you have the resolve?

Well this blog is going to track yet another turn in our trading career. After a stint in forex over the past 6 months we are going to get back to the S&P 500 futures e-mini and Nasdaq 100. And i'd like to take a moment to talk about this shift in my career.

Over the past 6 months I was using the forex markets to hone my trading skills and methodology with relatively little risk while keeping a live account to learn with. All i've been doing is trying to keep my accounts alive while I got my consistency up and approach down pat. But lets face it... 50 pips on a mini lot won't put food on the table. So I came up with an ultimatum for myself over the weekend. Take what i've learned and put EVERYTHING i've got left back into my futures trading account. As far as i'm concerned I feel like I've spent the last year spinning my wheels. While friends and family are off bettering their careers, their lives, and their experiences i've been stagnant in my growth within all of those areas. I'm sick of it.

I started this blog to chronicle the journey of successful trading. I wanted a historical record of all the crappy trades, the horrible decisions, and the evolution of a methodology. But I haven't walked the path. I've just stayed still at the starting line and talked about the path. That ends now.

Its important to note that all of this hold up was very necessary in my career. Its one thing to soldier on risking everything in your name with no plan, no consistency, and no management in your approach. Its quite another to have a calculated, profitable, and consistent trade plan and method. I now have the latter of those two options and I intend to use it come January. The hold up is over.

I'm putting literally EVERYTHING I have left in the form of capital into my trading account that includes a loan from my parents. Just enough to get me over the margin requirements and give me about 5 back to back max loss and max risk trades before kicking me under margin for the next day. (An event I should point out has never remotely come close to occurring). Some might say this is risky and dangerous. It is. In an ideal world this is way over leveraged. I don't live in an ideal world so this is what i've got to work with and i'm going to make it work. The point is this - one way or another i'm going to go out with a bang and (quite literally) give it all i've got.

Worst case? I get knocked under margin and I go out and get a job. I've got a shiny new degree, lots of business experience, and a nice smile. I'll make those work for me to get my new capital funding for a while. I'm not giving up on a dream. I've had a taste of what success in this field is all about and can't justify working a career that imposes limits on how much I can make an hour, a day, a year, a lifetime. All it will mean is that I find alternate means of financing to make a go of it again with a new eduction, a new method, a new resolve. I can't give up on something i've worked day and night towards, made every sacrifice towards over the past 30 months and walk away. If I was going to do that, I could've done it a 1000x's before I got to this point. I didn't. I don't intend to now.

Best case? You know those goals I have on the side of this blog? We go after them systematically one after another. What do I have going for me? Experience... 2 and half years of losing money and learning from it the hard way. A systematic unemotional approach to trading. I know the dangers of becoming giddy or depressed during the trading day. All of my trades are approached without bias or fear. Furthermore, my system is focused, robust, and proven. Over the past month on the S&P 1 Min chart (the timeframe i'm going to go live with) there were 59 trades, a 88% win rate, a max loss of 237.00, 3 losing days, and 7200.00 per contract in profits.

I'm going live January 2nd of 2009. I need time to get checks cleared, wire transfers completed, and for the holidays to pass. I don't want to go live the week of Christmas where the charts coil up and die. Between then and now i'm siming live everyday with my Tradestation account, posting real time results here every night and preparing for battle in January.

So one way or another stay tuned. You're gonna see a trader put it all on the line and either succeed or fail right before your eyes. So what it comes down to is this: The time is now. I'm betting on me, my parents are betting on me, and i'm betting it all. I don't intend to disappoint and I invite you all to watch.

Trade Results for today: