Jan 31, 2008

Made some tweaks...

then took some licks in futures today. Let's see... here's the summary:

ES: -7.25 points

ER2: -1.2 points

Got smacked up and frankly... I deserved it. In any case, I saw the error in my ways and hopefully corrected them. No equities today either (not that I didn't try).

This day will cease to exist in my mind... brrrrzzzz (there, wiped clean). Wait... who am I???

Jan 30, 2008

HTCH - Short

Just like Eyal, I also shorted HTCH and all was well for a bit. After entry, price dropped to a nice comfort zone away from my stop. As the FED announcement was approaching, I decided I would sell half my shares if price dropped below the ORL and hold the other half till after the announcement. While I was able to partial out, I was stopped out of the trade on a revised stop above the high of the 1:3o bar just before the FED. My fault for not exiting sooner but I was able to take home some cash.
No futures trades today either. I'm taking an educated guess in saying that there's been some cautious trading prior to the FED announcement (especially in Futures). I expect to put on some futures trades tomorrow just in time to end the month.

Jan 29, 2008

ICUI - Short... FME!!!!

Some days limiting losses works well... others it hurts like a knock to the nads. Today, I entered ICUI short off a break of the 11:30 bar low. Very narrow entry, reduced risk and the previous bar had long upper tail. Only thing was that the overall volume was pretty thin, but the relative volume was very good. Now, I noticed the ask/bid spread was fairly wide on entry (.08) which bothered me at bit.
Well, got into the trade, placed my stop and, at one point, price exceeded my stop but it didn't trigger. Anyway, price was really fluctuating with wild spreads and I didn't like it at all so I exited.

I was trading to save a loss rather than to make a gain. I need to work on this. Once exiting for latte money price immediately dropped. I mean, as soon as my order was filled price dropped like .20 (just the cushion I was looking). Long story short, price moved about a buck down from my entry.
While it hurts to not capitalize on what turned out to be a correct call I had pretty decent rationale to get the hell out.

Jan 28, 2008

Gappers... blah

It suddenly feels like last September for me. Not a whole lot of great candidates and some fairly unreliable chart patterns. I ended up making another ER2 futures trade for a 1 point gain. However, about 30 secs before entry I had connection problems and I wasn't sure what the entry candle looked like. I refreshed and backfilled the data and all looked well and proceeded to enter (with 3 contracts). But then I refreshed again and realized I shouldn't have entered. So, I split after a 1 point gain (which would've ended up being at least a 5 point gain had I let go). In any case, I feel fortunate.

Also, I downloaded Ninjatrader... wow, what a nice charting platform for futures. I'd like to really use it but coding just seems so difficult. Guess I need to mess around with it some more.

Jan 25, 2008

More futures

I know how I am. Once I become fixated on something I tend to virtually ignore everything else. Food... work... women - all the same shit. If I find something I like I go full throttle till I either hate it or find something else to interest me. So, with that... my new fixation is futures. Now, I still go through the motions with gathering my stock watchlist and stuff, but really... my mind's on futures. It's just simplier to follow. Please don't confuse that with me saying futures is easy... it's not. But it's also not so damn distracting like following 20 different stocks.
Look into it... you may like it.

Today, I was 2 for 4 in futures.

ER2: 2 wins, 1 loss

ES: 1 loss

Ended up +4.6 ER2 points. EDIT: It's actually +3.47 points.

Here's a snapshot of my trades with prices (won't be doing this all the time)

NOTE: Just like anything else, I use stops and once they're hit... I'm out. So, no HPT scenario for me, thank you very much.

Jan 24, 2008

Dead period

I'm sure many of you have great trading stories but for the way I trade (gappers) and the entries I look for I honestly have not see a lot of candidates over the past week. Took a breakeven trade today on SYMC which looked like it was going to jump past the ORH but never had the push. On a positive note, I managed another futures gain... 3 points after going long ER2.

Jan 23, 2008


Made my first futures trade today and managed a 6 point gain off a short of ES. I'm still kinda messing around with some things but really wanted to place an actual trade.
I have to say, I totally understand the attraction to futures. Right now, I'm only concentrating on ER2 and ES. But that's all. Just two symbols to track and only 2 charts up on my screen. Whereas stocks require a bit more attention and preparation. What I would ultimately like to happen is limit my gap watchlist to just 10 or so high-volume stocks every day and only manage those. We'll see how things work out.

Jan 22, 2008

BMY - Short

Nope. You're not gonna find a chart today. I only show the winners (mostly) and BMY was a looooooser. Entered on a break of the 12:15 bar low (:15), despite the little voice in my head saying "what the hell are you doing? Don't you see the lower tail on the third bar?" While it was troublesome, I figured the 'craziness' had settled down by my entry.

Jan 18, 2008

Early day

Went out to dinner tonight so I only had till 12:30 to look for opportunities. I saw none. Have a good weekend.

Jan 17, 2008


No... I didn't trade FME. However, ACV and DFR did manage to F-ME today.

Jan 16, 2008

NITE - Long

NITE was another failed reversal play. I entered off a break of the 12:30 bar high which closed strong and above the high of the previous bar (which was the potential reversal bar). Price quickly stalled and I was a bit nervous it might not even make it to the ORH. But it did a few bars later. I had things to do and exited during the 2pm bar.

Jan 15, 2008

ZRAN - Short

ZRAN is a great example of what I call a failed reversal. As you can see, bars 5-6 moved down and below the ORL. The 7th bar (11am) was a 'reversal' bar to the upside. However, bar 8 (my entry) failed to confirm the reversal bar and closed strong right below the ORL.
About the only I didn't like was that I was buying at around $16. Price initially moved down after my entry but then consolidated right below the ORL. The 1pm bar spike made get a partial order ready but I decided to let it ride and kept my original stop in place (break of entry bar high). All in all... it worked out well and I exited at the fib. ext. I also tried to get into NZ (1:30 bar low, :15) but IB couldn't 'find' any shares.

Jan 14, 2008


Shorted SNS (:30, 1pm bar low) and it immediately went against me and just lingered. I partialed out a bit but still ended up taking a .75R loss. The last few trading days have really sucked.

Rise or Fall - Revealed

Stock: ISRG Day: January 10th Outcome: If you said yes to shorting this stock on a break of the 4th bar low you would've enjoyed a more than 4R profit as it ended up touching the fib. ext. I did not enter as the entry bar was a bit wide. I was looking for a more narrow entry but price just took off. Maybe BL could've gotten in on a break of the the 2pm bar low to coincide with his 2:22pm theory.

Jan 12, 2008

Rise or Fall - 1/11

Been a while since I last posted a Rise or Fall candidate but I hope to make this a more regular feature. Take a look at the last candle on the chart and let me know if you would go long, short or stay out based on the information provided.
30-min view

Daily view

Jan 11, 2008

No magic

Last week I went out, got some steak and came home to a nice gain in SPN. Today, I got ice cream and then got stopped out on MHS (:30, 1pm bar low). Moral of the story... ice cream sucks. Me likey da steak.

Jan 10, 2008

NIHD - Hit and Run

Since I normally don't enter trades before 10:30... I always take a look at King Jamie's watchlist before 10am to check for inside bars forming near the intraday pivot point. Today... I found NIHD. Entered long on a break of the 2nd bar high which was right at the pivot point. The third bar was a rollercoaster so I figured I'd take the money and run if it got to 2R. And that's what I did.

I also entered EMN off the :30... dumped half my shares for breakeven, then took a loss on a revised stop. I then closed the computer and called it a day. Of course, right after I did that a nice entry showed up on the :15 (2pm bar). Bitch!

Jan 9, 2008

Frozen by inactivity

I think I passed on a trade today just because I hadn't seen a lot of good setups the last couple days. VFC presented a nice (although not perfect) opportunity right below R2 on a NR bar with enough room to run to the ORH. The long upper tail on the first bar coupled with potential resistance from R2 made me stay out of it. Too bad. So... no trades today.

Jan 8, 2008

Not much

Didn't really see a lot of great opportunities today. Hope you all did well.

Jan 7, 2008


There was good and bad today. First, the good: EVVV set up nicely on the :30 chart. I entered short on a break of the 8th bar low after a pretty weak move to the upside on bars 6 and 7. I got a nice fill and exited all my shares during the 3pm bar.

Now the bad. HWAY first showed up on my radar after printing a very nice reversal bar during the 5th bar (:15 chart). However, the high of that bar was never taken out and my order wasn't triggered. So, I waited a bit and thought I saw a good opportunity on a break of the 12pm bar high (inside bar after a failed reversal). But, it wasn't meant to be and I was stopped out and suffered some bad slippage. I think I'm going to start waiting for the close of my trigger bar to be equal above or near the close of the previous bar (at least for failed reversal plays). I should not that after my initial order wasn't triggered, I noticed the next bar (6th) was an inside, NR bar. Price actually blew past my stop-limit order and I decided to cancel as I didn't want to catch it on the way down.

Jan 3, 2008

Beer, steak and trading

So, we're preparing for a weekend trip to see friends and needed to go out and get some last minute gifts. I figured we'd also grab dinner along the way. So, when SPN came along and presented a good opportunity (11:45 bar)... I couldn't resist. I entered long and price immediately went my way and kept me out of the red. I placed my stop like I always do, but since I was leaving, I figured I'd also place a sell-limit order right below the 119% fib. ext.

Anyway, as I was drinking my beer and entrecote... I kept thinking about what the hell was going on with the trade. The entire time I was thinking of how nice it would be to place an order right before I leave, enjoy a nice dinner with the family, come back and... viola - make 5R. Well, to my wonderful surprise, that happened.

Now, I do have a favor for you IB users out there. I believe Hammer Trader mentioned that he uses Cancel orders. Meaning, if you have a sell-limit and a sell-stop order on the same trade and one triggers the other order is immediately canceled. I have no clue how to do that and would appreciate anyone's help.

Also, as mentioned earlier, I'll be away for the weekend so there won't be any new posts till Sunday evening at the earliest. Have a great weekend.

Jan 2, 2008

PAY - Short

Decent volume today but it seemed to come in the afternoon. I took a not-so-great entry with PAY (11am bar) and after it went nowhere quickly, I dumped half my shares at breakeven. Price continued to hang out around the ORL on low volume and at the 20.50 area. I don't know... just didn't seem like it was going to do anything and I'd rather get out at breakeven then end up seeing it hit my stop. So, that's it... breakeven on PAY. It ended up breaking down after I exited (don't they all???) and hit my 2R target of 19.92.

Trading goals for 2008

Meant to post this up sometime last week but it didn't happen. I really hate doing things half-ass... but it's better than nothing. Anyway, here's what I'm shooting for in 2008 (no particular order):

-increase risk size (hopefully leading to increased reward)
-make 290R
-understand, papertrade and eventually trade Futures
-enter more swing positions

That's it. I mean, I could probably fill the page with shit, but really, if I achieve the above stated goals... I will be the happiest dude on the planet. Well, maybe not happier than the guy married to Kate Beckinsale... but happy nonetheless.