Tuesday, March 30, 2010

one step at a time

Trading well past few days....

 Taking very small gains... but they're adding up -- instead of watching long positions chop around for no gain.

 What's working is -- being patient... assessing strength, particularly by watching volume and also, the overall markets for sentiment.

 I am achieving my daily goals.  I am managing risk well...   the key was simply -- keeping track.  It keeps you honest.

  It's easy to buy stock dropping -- but the weakness rarely pays off.   See how SKBI just kept going?  Buying into strength is much harder than it looks.

 Today was a particularly difficult day in the markets and I managed quite well.   And there's lots of room to improve as well.

Friday, March 26, 2010


Listen more.

 Wait for the stock to tell you what it will do.

 FOLLOW a PLAN, stick to it.

 Buy strength: volume or above 20 day MA or both.

  Enter / set stop - as it begins to move your way.   Keep trades that immediately work.

  Take profits.

  Listen to the whole market before entering.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

no edge

I have one account that is profitable:

I have made very few trades in this account.

I bought the best ideas.

I held through volatility and took big draw downs.

I held through large moves.  I did sell one name for a big gain, one for a small loss.  

Value investing has worked for me.
 Daytrading has been mostly awful.

It's clear what will work in the future.

 It may not be what I thought it would be.  But it's what works.

Monday, March 22, 2010


Made many trades, had nothing to show for it.

 Really gave it back by shorting... which I have sworn off many times.  I am terrible at it.  They are almost 95% losers -- every single time.

 My winners were value names I know and trust, like YONG and ALJ  -- both were bought on pullbacks.  I know these stocks well.  They were instantly in the green.  I was comfortable with them the whole time.

 This is my edge: buying value stocks using TA -- knowing the names well.   This is what I learned.  It's harder to trade names you're not familiar with.

 I thought the markets would have turned today -- but I thought wrong.  So I took many small losses that added up.  Overall, I was up a tiny amount.  With two trades in play (one down a bit, one breakeven).

 I am now keeping track of everything carefully on a spreadsheet.  I wish I had done this a long time ago.


I put on some short positions -- and lost on all of them again...

 Market gapped lower and then went shooting higher -- trapping all the shorts -- who obvioulsy are being squeezed to death again.

 I'm not sure what else I could have done -- I oversized the shorts and also did a few long trades which mostly worked out.

 I think I recognized the squeeze early but it was a slow squeeze.  The daily charts looked broken.  Maybe it'll die end of day here.  But IYR ripping to new highs.... all on low volume.   Every sector is green but utilities.

  SPY now at top of descending channel.

 INDEED:  today's lesson -- watch $TICK -- there's no readings below -300 -- buyers are still in charge and that's the first sign there's no selloff coming.

I hold TZA and SPPI now -- having traded all day for small loss.  I'm probably overtrading.  I don't see an edge anymore, long or short.

 So that's why you leave stops... market can keep going anyway.

 I don't understand what's going on but I guess I don't have to...  Charts broke back up.  End of story.

 Shorts are probably trapping themselves on low volume.  A break to new highs will force massive covering.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Trade: DHT

I bought DHT on Friday based on  my usual swing pattern.

 I will sell immediately if it moves below the 20 day MA.

 It is important to constantly monitor trades and take losses immediately as they move against me.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

ADY chart

ADY has been trending down a long time.  If you use charts, this was an avoid.  Today ADY is down 16% on a bad ER to fresh lows.

 The charts once again were crystal clear.  The key for microcaps is buying the breakout -- like CHGI.ob, which did nothing for 7 mos.  As soon as it cleared its last high of 1.90 -- it ran up around 75% in 6 days... more or less.   The key was just stalking it and buying the volume breakout.

Monday, March 15, 2010

sticking with 20 day

so far: whipsawed out of XIDE

 lost on CMTL, STP --   overall indexes extended so not much upside.

 the 20 day breach works best after a correction or longish base.  Otherwise, the stock is probably not ready to trend up.

 I'm now short... but market now pushing back up end of day.  I feel I should hold for multi-day selloff rather than take quick profits... but I might get stopped out.  Well, I have always taken quick profits before and it's never amounted to much so may as well leave the slightly green positions alone.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Game Plan

I feel more comfortable buying swing trades.  I need to focus more on swings.  I also feel more comfortable buying stocks near the lows -- but the caveat being -- I need to wait for the first sign of an impending new trend.... whether it's a sign of volume. or a 20 day MA break or other.

 Then -- I can always start with a small position and add - since the swing will last many days.

The trades should come in chunks.  First profit taking... then getting in, then scaling out.  But all over a fluid process.

 Too much focus on daytrading is a distraction and hardly profitable.