Monday, January 30, 2012


PTEN:  stopped out ---  small loss

reenter PTEN -- small gain -- but was good for .30  - sold too early

HES: enter on pattern - was good for .30  - sold too early

ATPG:  weakness -- bot it at lows and still could have gotten a dime -- closed weak.  So the only one that should have been dumped early.

also traded NBR which was showing strength and caught a nice .80 move in managed account -- finished at the sell price... best trade -- focus on what was strong.

/zb  -- great entry with less than 2 ticks heat -- would have been great for 10 ticks -- sold out too early.

sold/held YHOO (loser - finished at lows...)

overall -- should have been a very decent day.  But it wasn't.  Have to accept uncertainty.  Selling winners is just too expensive a habit.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

trading specifics

watched  /tf sink on the open -- bought the first break off the steep early selloff -- sold much too early as it was pretty much lows of the day...         NEED TO HOLD early winners

also bot  YHOO and sold for small gain -- it was a winner off the bat

i need to accept losses --  setting stops and accepting that to win - i must lose small and I must allow the winners to grow and they will overcome the small losses.

I am sabotaging myself with fear of taking trades.

I also tried shorting /tf  -- despite the strong market and did okay hitting tops.  I didn't take a clear trade in /cl which was a perfect entry with no drawdown... again, too fearful to take a chance.

I see good traders buying support  / selling resistance and holding for much longer. 

I also see these patterns -- channels or ranges and when they resolve....  that's often a good time to enter as you will either catch a big  trend or get stopped out quick.  Usually the market signals are pretty clear which way it'll break... especially after 10:00.

I need to write down my trades more often.  And catch more 'in play'  names -- get in them with small stops of .20 losses or less.   Three big losers have thrown off my entire confidence and that shouldn't be such a big deal.  I never should have allowed big draws...    set stops... take losses and take gains.

I need to focus on EXECUTION of clear entries and set stops with proper sizing. 

Monday, January 23, 2012


dealing with uncertainty.

1) the only thing i can be certain of - mostly - is how much I will lose on each trade.  Once I give that up  by 'hoping for the best' or 'relying on valuation' -- I will always -- always end up selling for a much bigger loss than intended. 

I also fear losing a small gain and hence rarely make large gains.  The correct strategy is to raise the stops on swings and daytrades.

It is not enough for a stock to stop going down to buy it -- it must be GOING UP.  This means there must be some kind of base pattern or   news/catalyst/volume surge to suggest a sustained move that can generate reasonable profits.

 Confidence comes from following rules.   Losing trades is not a confidence buster ...  not following a strategy is.   Follow charts -- to establish support levels.  These levels are all that matters.  Trading is primarily a psychological game -- not a math game.  Once you give up your psychological edge -- by falling into feelings of fear/regret... you give up everything. 

 Try talking out loud -- establishing what you see from a different part of your brain to avoid allowing emotional trading (fear) take over.   A trade has a clear plan and does not need to be extended (to avoid taking a loser) or ended abruptly (after a quick/small profit).  Let the market dictate the appropriate end of the trade.   You can only control the first loss and the entry.  (

Thursday, January 5, 2012

why rush?

saw that MRVL -- cheap stock was gapping up due to news tied to GOOG.  Bought premarket.  Bought for myself -- got a bad fill.  Started rising and I immediately sold it for chump change... watched it rise the rest of the day even though I knew it was 4 points undervalued.  Why the fear?  Why not just hold?  Why not trust your valuation / market?  Fear is the death of all trading.   Sold DWA from fear.   Good stocks will rise.  GDXJ -- sold too early. 

 Please give me the faith to hold winners longer.  Trust the universe a little bit.  Let go of your fear.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

ripper trend down

market gapped up huge but it was actually a trend DOWN day intraday despite TREND UP day internals.  Thus -- selling the open was the right call.

 I sold STJ/HAS which both closed lower and got out of DWA after a bounce instead of selling the open.  Easy money should be taken because there is no easy money.

 Stocks like GDXJ -- were up 3 points from my original entry last week.  Biggest problem is being patient.  I took the heat.  Take the reward too.  The market will mean revert and you must trust yourself and the mean reversion process. 

I did not trade futures although I made a few nice calls.  It was hard to go long since most of the day was trend down.  So patience is okay.  There were big moves in commodities/ferts.  Trust your valuation process. 

Probably 90% of my buys end up going green but I probably sell half for a loss.  Think about that.   The key is to keep position size smaller to hold on.