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  1. Your level of confidence (not arrogance) as a trader will have a huge positive impact on your success. The more confident you are the less time you will spend on second guessing your decisions. The more confident you are the more positive energy you will focus toward your desired outcome. Confidence is based on two things; what you do and who you are. When a trade stops for a loss your confidence becomes rattled. This is because confidence is based on what you do. When confidence is based on who you are and your ability as a trader, one who is prepared for all outcomes whether a loss or a profit, then you are consistent with yourself no matter what the result. You will feel confident because you took the loss as intended or because you closed with a profit. You will choose correctly in either scenario! This is because confidence is based on you. Each time you correctly make a decision in trading whether it is for a loss or gain, the more confident you will become with your ability to act accordingly to the current market situation in a manner that is appropriate. Your confidence is now based on your awareness as a trader (you) not on failures, mistakes or missed opportunities. Let me say that again . . . Your confidence is now based on your awareness as a trader, one who will make the correct decisions. Help build confidence by reviewing your trades diligently to discover when, why and how you chose to act during the time of the trade. It will help your understanding of the markets and yourself. The more you choose to learn from each trade failure and success the stronger and more confident you will become. This confidence will increase your flexibility in your decisions and your behavior. This flexibility will help create comfort in your trading. This comfort will feed your confidence and the cycle continues. Begin working on your confidence today. Believe in yourself and have faith in your abilities. KURT CAPRA Contributing Editor Instructor and Traders Coach www.pristine.com
  2. Good Morning All; Have you ever felt the inability to pull the trigger to get in a trade at the right moment, and then chased the stock only to your detriment? Have you ever taken profits way before your target the first time a stock 'jiggled', only to sit on the sidelines as your stock ran to its original target? If so, you are experiencing the effects of fear. You are not alone. Psychological aspects make up 85% of the trading equation. Fear is one of the aspects. Ideally, we would all be "emotionless" traders. No fear, no greed, just pure discipline. While this may be a worthy goal, not many can take the leap to this level just because I say you need to. While most people cannot eliminate fear, there are some things you can do to keep it in check. Here are some suggestions. First, the greatest enemy of fear is a well-laid plan. Have a trading plan that you use that clearly spells out what strategies you will play, when, you can trade, when you cannot trade, how many shares you will play, how much money you are willing to lose on a single trade. There are many aspects to a trading plan, these are some of the basics. Next, plan the individual trade. When you see a trade come up that fits into your plan, study the play to find the proper stop loss and target. Play the proper share size so a stop out does not violate your maximum loss per trade. Make your decisions before the trades hit, while you have a clear level head, then follow the plan without question. You must "execute" the trades you have "planned". The next step may be the most important. Let your plan go to work. Let the play finish. Unless something changes about the trade, let it come to its natural conclusion, either the target or the stop, or perhaps management based on your plan; not an overreaction to what you see. Think about it. You have planned a trade while you had a clear head. You believe the trade is worth your hard earned money. Give it a chance to finish. There are sometimes reasons to end the trade early. Perhaps there has been a change in market environment. For example, you might be long in your play and the futures just took out key support. Alternatively, maybe you planned on reaching the target by reversal time and it is almost at the target with reversal time now here. However, this happens the minority of times; the majority of times you should leave the play alone. Do not be jiggled out by your Level 2 screen. The chart pattern is all that matters. If you are still so nervous that you can't handle it, try this next. Sell half the position at the reduced target. Get used to taking partial profits and this will let you have confidence letting the back half hit the target. This will also be likely to put you in a 'no lose' situation with the trade, giving you some patience. Good traders sell incrementally, on the way up all of the time. If that does not help, then you need to cut back on your share size so the size of the potential loss does not trigger your "pain factor". Closing Comments The real answer to this question is 'just do it', but few are able to. Playing with a share size that doesn't trigger your 'fear button' is critical until you develop a winning record. Try these ideas if you are having a problem with 'fear'. Paul Lange Vice President of Services Pristine Capital Holdings, Inc. www.pristine.com
  3. APPLE Inc. (AAPL) moved the NASDAQ 100 Index (QQQ) for the most part for a long time, but in 2013 that disconnected. AAPL moved lower as QQQ moved higher in 2013. Now AAPL has reached a point where those that have been in love with this stock (rightly so) have to step up to keep the very long-term trend alive. AAPL made its high in mid-2012 and QQQ pulled back also into the end of that year, but in 2013 that correlation disconnected as the two moved in opposite directions. AAPL is now retesting the low it made in April and buyers have an opportunity to add to those positions. With last week's reversal in the QQQ at support and AAPL retesting the prior low made in April, it's a point in time where the two are aligned again to move higher. If one or the other fails to hold its support level shown, the odds are that the QQQ will move to the second support shown and AAPL will move to the $350 dollar area marked. Join us for this week's Free Workshops and Happy 4th of July to you all! PRISTINE - A Trading Style, Often Imitated, But NEVER Matched! All the best Greg Capra President & CEO Pristine Capital Holdings, Inc.
  4. Good Morning All; "Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful people with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan 'press on' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race." Calvin Coolidge. Perseverance There is a famous story that is told about a prospector that set out to find fortune in the famous gold rush days. He took his life savings and bought the necessary mining equipment, and set out for the 'hot' mining spot. After months of drilling, he was on the last hole that his finances would allow him to dig. He was running out of money, and would not be able to set up in a new area. Another man came by and observed this prospector's operation. This man had seasoning and experience and made his living picking up the deserted mines of others. He had come to recognize when the rock formations in a mine were such that a gold vein was more likely to be close. He also knew that it was not hard to pick up old mines from miners who were broke and tired and had not found their fortunes. So it came to be that this man struck a deal to buy the prospectors equipment and rights to his mine that had not yet produced one cent of gold. The prospector had been mining for months, was tired and discouraged, and happy to get a little money for his worthless mine and equipment. He quit digging and sold all to the man. The man who took over only had to dig six more feet before running into what proved to be one of the biggest gold veins of that time. Had the prospector held out one more day, skipped one lunch, taken one less break, or done anything to delve six more feet, he would have had his fortune. Read today's quote at the top of the page. It is more than just a quote to fill in space. Today, it is the theme of the story and one of the best quotes of all time, and applies nicely to trading. Most traders who come to the market are talented, smart, and well educated. Most traders who come to the market fail at trading. You must resolve to do more than rely on your past successes. Read this quote and article again. It may prove to be one of the most important paragraphs you ever read. Closing Comments The process of learning to trade is unique because in addition to learning the technical skills, you are battling your emotions all the way. You will find that you will accumulate lots of knowledge, without seeing a marked improvement in your trading results. Then, all of a sudden, you will have what seems to be an epiphany, and soar ahead, and wonder how you could have even struggled at something so easy. Then you will stumble, and doubt if you are really making progress. If you are going to be successful, you will find your stumbles are less severe, last shorter each time, and your surges ahead are stronger. Paul Lange Vice President of Services Pristine Capital Holdings, Inc.
  5. The Trend Really is Your Friend How many times have you heard the saying "The trend is your friend." Most likely more times that you've wanted to and if all you had to do is follow the trend to make money there would be a lot more successful traders. The saying really is true, but it's not that simple. There can be many different trends in different time frames, so which one do you use? Here is what I suggest. What I am going to show you is for intra-day trading. However, you can use the concept for swing-trading or long-term investing. Simply change the time frames used. First, understand that is no best time frame to use. It's a choice, there are many and none will be perfect providing you with what will work all the time. Those of you searching for a trading method will hear about using minute charts ranging from 1-minute to as high as a 240-minute chart and anything in between. Charts can also be viewed in seconds of time. They can also be view in Ticks, which is an activity based chart. This can be useful for viewing overnight or pre-market activity when trading volume is low. Then there is also range based charts, which create bars that are all the same range from high to low. There may be other types, but these are the main types used. All of them manipulate the same data to expand or contract it, so make a choice what you'll use and stay with it. Getting caught up in a search for the best type and for the best setting will put you on a never-ending quest for that Holy Grail. Don't do it. Okay, hear is my suggestion that I have taught to many traders for you to consider. Use the 60-minute time frame as the primary trend for your intra-day bias. The definition of an uptrend is higher pivot highs and higher pivot lows. A downtrend, lower pivot highs and lower pivot lows. If a prior pivot low in an uptrend is violated the trend is no longer up since the definition of an uptrend no longer exists and vice-versa for a downtrend. I am going to use a 20-period moving average as a "visual aid" to speed up the analysis here. This helps when scanning many charts quickly to simply view if prices are above or below the moving average. If above the moving average, think long and if below think short. If the moving average is intersecting through the middle of prices back and forth it would indicate that there is no trend, so stand aside. Very simple. Think you can do this? Once you have your bias from the 60-minute time frame, wait for setups that you have defined as such in the 5-minute time frame to enter. For example, if the prices on the 60-minute time frame are below the 20-MA and trending lower, a 5-minute Pristine Breakdown (PBO) or a Pristine Sell setup (PSS) would be taken as a short-sale and vice-versa for a 60-minute uptrend. The price pattern on the 60-minute chart is not important to us for entries. Those come from the 5-minute time frame. It's the trend we are interested in on the 60. Now I am going to show you how to know what that is without having to look at the 60-minute time frame. You may find this helpful since you will be looking at less information; one chart. Here is how to do that. As you recall, I said we would use the 20-MA on the 60-minute chart as a visual aid. What we are going to do is put a moving average on the 5-minute chart that is the equivalent of the 60-minute 20-MA. Here is how to do that. There are twelve 5-minute bars that make up one 60-minute bar. For that reason, we are going to multiple the 20-MA by twelve, which gives us a 240-period moving average. View a 60-minute time frame with a 20-MA and then look at a 240-MA on the 5-minute. You will see that they are virtually the same and end in the same place or very close to it. Here is the plan. When the 20-MA is under the 240-MA and trending lower on the 5-minute time frame take short setups. When the 20-MA is above the 240-MA and trending higher on the 5-minute time frame take long setups. Be aware of prior support and resistance areas and more importantly the lack thereof. These will affect turning points within the trend or allow prices to trend. Greg Capra President & CEO Pristine Capital Holdings, Inc.
  6. Good Morning All; Webster defines trading as: "to engage in frequent buying and selling of (as stocks or commodities) usually in search of quick profits". Notice the key words that even Webster knew to include, "...in search of..." making an implication to the fact that 'quick profits' are ever so illusive. This definition works fine if you are learning English as a second language. It gives you a notion of what the word means. It does not do justice to the process. I am going to take this article to share some ideas regarding what makes up the essence of trading. This is MY definition, you do not have to agree with it, but perhaps if you read it closely, it may open up some ideas. As a matter of fact, if you get any 'light bulbs', please email me. What is Trading? Part One of Two. Here is a definition to consider. Trading is "Using technical analysis to find a moment in time when the odds are in your favor. Then trading becomes a matter of your entry and management." In other words, it is having the KNOWLEDGE to know when the odds are in your favor, having the PATIENCE to wait for that moment, and then having the DISCIPLINE to handle the trade properly when it goes in your favor and properly when it goes against you." Now let us dissect a little. The opening words are 'using technical analysis'. Now, I know Webster's definition would let you trade with fundamentals, but not ours. At Pristine we feel there can be no argument that the opening words are not a misprint. We begin our search on the charts. This is the only place where we find truth and useful information in the markets. We do not find useful information from analysts, not from brokers, and not from accountants. Next comes 'a moment in time'. How long is a moment in time? It depends on your timeframe. For a core trader, that moment may be a day, for a swing trader several minutes, for a day or scalp trader, perhaps only a few seconds. The point is that there is only ONE moment when that exact trade is proper. Anything past that moment, and that trade is gone. Note, there may be other similar trades that occur later (such as buying the first pullback), but these are separate trades, each one of them will have their 'moment'. Next, when are 'the odds in your favor'? Well, that comes down to a matter of knowledge of technical patterns. Every so often, a stock will 'show its hand' and give away a key secret. It will let you in when a pattern develops that appears to be something other than just random noise. "Then it becomes a matter of entry and management". In other words, here is where the psychology comes into play. Once you learn how, the intelligence actually required to enter and manage a trade is minimal. The ability to do so is rare. This is where you become your own worst enemy, and this is the level that even the most astute traders seldom pass. Then notice the three capitalized words in the last part. KNOWLEDGE to know; PATIENCE to wait; and DISCIPLINE to handle. It sounds like the beginning of the Boy Scout Creed, but is a sentence you may want to cut out and put on your monitor. Next Monday we will examine some of the finer points, such as how many traders arrive at their own definitions. Paul Lange Vice President of Services Pristine Capital Holdings, Inc
  7. Good Morning All: If the title sounds a little confusing, it was meant to. The issue to be discussed today is not just 'when' to trade. There are trades that can be done any time the market is trading. That does not mean that you should be trading all day long, it just means that the times you pick to trade can be any time, IF you know what to trade. This series of articles discusses this issue, and are geared toward the 'intraday trader', not the swing trader. That was the opening paragraph the last two parts of this three part series. Last week we looked at the key morning reversal times, and began to discuss lunch. Today we will discuss lunch, and the afternoon reversals. When to Trade What, Part 3 of 3 Lunch: Lunch can be a little tricky to pin point on some days. At its broadest moments, lunch begins after the 11:15 reversal time (remember, all times are ET, market time) ends the move, and can last all the way until the 2:15 reversal time. This is what typically happens on sloppy, non-trending days. On nice trending days, lunch may be as short as 12:00 until the 1:30 reversal time. The most precise reversal times over the lunch period are 1:30, and 2:15 (2:15-2:30 range on most days). Below is a typical day. Notice a few things, and then look at the charts for yourself. These revelations will save you, and make you money, everyday. 1. Note the range (the fluctuations from the highs to the lows), or volatility, before lunch, after lunch, and during lunch. Note again, from last week, the power of the 10:00 and 10:30 reversals 2. Note the volume during lunch. 3. Note the last playable event was at 11:30, and the next one was at 2.15. 4. Note the narrow bodies and tails during lunch; you do not see the rest of the day. These are the reasons traders get frustrated at lunch, real moves rarely happen on the market or typical stocks. And After Lunch: After 1:30 comes the 2:15 time. If 1:30 does not begin the afternoon move, then 2:15 will. If 1:30 does produce a big move, then 2:15 is often the target. The last times of the day are 3:00, when the bond market closes and 3:30, which usually provides the high or low into the close to end trading for the day, as the last 30 minutes is often sloppy. Here is one more chart. Here we see another typical day. You will find, when you study this, there are only a small handful of patterns that happen over and over again. Here we have a retest at '1' that holds for the end of lunch. The first playable move is the 2.15 reversal, and finally the 3.30 reversal ends the pull back for a rally into close. Paul Lange Vice President of Services Pristine Capital Holdings, Inc.
  8. Good Morning All: If the title sounds a little confusing, it was meant to. The issue to be discussed today, is not just 'when' to trade. There are trades that can be done any time the market is trading. That does not mean that you should be trading all day long, it just means that the times you pick to trade can be any time, IF you know what to trade. That is the point of this article. When to Trade What, Part 2 of 3 That was the opening paragraph last week in part one of this three part series. In the last letter we looked at some 'pre market' organization, and we discussed the first reversal time, 9:35 (all times are Eastern, New York, 'market' time). We then mentioned the next two reversal times, 10:00 and 10:30. This week, we will talk about those two key times, as well as the beginning of the 'lunch hour'. Next week we will conclude with part three. There are 9 micro reversal times. 4-5 of them are major and critical. Also, understanding HOW to use them and HOW they interact is imperative. Let's look at the morning reversals, 10:00 and 10:30: There is also a minor reversal time at 11:15. It is simply amazing how many traders do not use the reversal times to their advantage. This probably spawns from the fact that many traders do not even know or understand them. If you are one of those traders, you are going to learn something that will change your trading career in the next couple of paragraphs. A picture says a thousand words, so look at the charts below. These are the three five-minute charts of the QQQ from the last three days, period. We generally give the reversal times a window of 5-10 minutes on each side. The key is when the Pristine Buy or Sell setup occurs, at the approximate time. The yellow 'stars' show the two major reversal times we are discussing. They are all happening 'right on the money', though they do not need to in order to be effective. Note two things. First, the second chart is slightly off on the 10.30 reversal, but the 10.30 low was only pennies off the low of the day, and again, it is the buy setup that happens once in that area that matters. Second, these charts are simply that last three days. They are not the result of a special search. If you continue this exercise on your own, you will be astonished. Most other days are even more amazing. Note, that the 10:00 and 10:30 major reversal times form a reversal, every time, and one of them usually sets the high or low for the day, or at least for the morning. This is typical of what you will find every day. Again, no effort was used to find these charts for this article. The only time this is not 'amazing' is when we have 'power trend' days that do not really reverse at all, and that is because the very definition of a power trend day is that the market carries a trend one way all day. Sometimes these days don not begin until the 10:00 reversal time puts in the first reversal, but these power trend days are rare; usually one every other month. Don't believe it? No problem, go take a look for yourself. Go print out a bunch of five-minute charts. Print them from the market, the futures, or your favorite stocks. Print some from this week, some from a month ago, some from two months ago. It does not matter. Then go through and draw vertical lines at 10:00, and 10:30. You will be shocked and amazed that virtually every day, you have drawn lines though the high and low of the day, or at least the high, until much later in the day. And you thought trading was tough. The next time period to look at is the beginning and ending of lunch. These times can change a little depending on if the market is 'trending' or choppy. Generally, the last true move ends around 12:20. We often count lunch as starting at 12:00, but if there is a strong trend in place, it may follow through until 12:30. On strong trend days, the last reversal around 1:30 often sets the trend back in place. If it is a choppy market (80% of the time), lunch may stay choppy, until the 2:15 reversal time. This one is usually in stone, and the whole lunch concept, as well as the afternoon reversals, will be discussed next week. Paul Lange Vice President of Services Pristine Capital Holdings, Inc.
  9. rading is one of the most fascinating, challenging and rewarding businesses on earth. Very simply, we are looking for price patterns that have high odds of follow through, then we look to the market internals to see if it makes sense to enter a bullish or bearish trade and, if acceptable, we calculate share size per our Trading Plan, enter the trade and then enter "management mode." When looking for stocks to trade in a particular sector, it is best to trade the cleanest patterns that are showing relative strength for longs (relative weakness for shorts). There are various ways to determine strength. Some include comparing the stock to the sector, comparing it to market internals, or comparing it to itself. For example, if the SMH (semi-conductor holders trust) has a bullish daily, gapped up, and is a Pristine Buy Setup™ (PBS) into the gap fill on the 5-Min. chart, but AMAT also has a bullish daily, also gapped up, but is basing at the high into the first reversal and did not pull back, it is showing relative strength to the market. Now assume the S&P Futures pulled into the gap fill on the 5-Min. chart (and the TICK fell and the TRIN rose), but both SMH and AMAT also have a bullish daily, also gapped up, but are basing at the high into the first reversal and did not pull back, they are showing relative strength to the market internals. Finally, many novice traders believe that a stock's Relative Strength Indicator (RSI) measures relative strength to the market. Remember, the RSI, like any oscillator, is a derivative of price and volume; therefore, all compare stock action to itself, not to a broader market index. So RSI measures the momentum of a stock's price action compared to its price "x" periods ago (default is 14 days), but to the Pristine Trained Trader, offers no benefit that is otherwise not readily ascertainable from price action. In addition to watching my long and short lists for possible entries, I watch two market minders looking for relative strength or weakness. If the market gaps down, and I am considering fading the open and looking long, I see what is showing relative strength compared to the broader market. Similarly, if the market gaps up and I am looking for a short, I will focus on the weak stocks, which are those down at the open that did not participate in the market's gap strength. (Note that this is a short-term counter trend strategy that is applied only when the market internals suggest it. In fact, we might actually be buying the stocks that gap up with the broader market, on pullbacks into the first reversal period, or over a 30-Min. high. Jeff Yates Contributing Editor Interactive Trading Room Moderator Gap and Intra-Day Trading Specialist Instructor and Traders Coach
  10. Good Morning All: Over the years, Pristine has become a pillar in the education field. Pristine began training ordinary people about the financial industry in 1994 and has a perfect reputation for quality and honesty in presenting the best material, with the best instructors, and with the follow-up to ensure students have every opportunity to go on to make money. People new to trading or investing may not appreciate all that goes into that. In an industry that sometimes gets a bad name by companies that are dishonest and offer sub-par training, it leaves many people asking the question: "Who can actually do this thing we call trading or investing?" Who Can Do This? Let's get right to the answer. Anyone. Anyone can do this. Not everyone, or everyone would, but anyone can, and relatively simply. Here is what CANNOT be done. We, as well as anyone else, cannot show you a magical technical indicator that makes money. There is no such thing. If there were, it is all I would use. We cannot show you a kindergarten system that makes this as simple as "red light - green light". These claims are insulting to professional traders all around the world. We cannot guarantee that any ONE person will be successful at this. I know of no college that guarantees their graduates will be successful. The college supplies the tools, but the student must put them to use. Here is what we CAN do. We can supply you with the best education that gives you all the tools you need to make money in the market. It IS very doable. Here are some interesting things you should know. 1. You do NOT need any special background. In fact, the less background you have in the financial world the better. I have always said that my favorite student would be a 13-15 year old teen-ager who likes video games. 2. You do NOT need an advanced education. "The world is full of educated derelicts" is a famous quote form Herbert Hoover. The complexity of what is needed to make money can be learned by junior high students. Many people make money shortly after our two day seminar. 3. Once you learn the method, you do not need to spend time dissecting or even listening to financial reports, earnings statements, or news stories. They are all irrelevant. 4. You do not have to compete with big boys on Wall Street. Many places teach the wrong methods. We like to ride the coat tails of big money, not compete against them. There is no other way. 5. You can easily beat the big funds. Billions of dollars cannot be moved around quickly or efficiently. In fact, they are forced to resort to very passive long-term buy and hold strategies that have been proven to not work. 80% of funds underperform the market. The confusion arises because hucksters looking to make a quick buck make this look 'too' easy. People forget what 'trading' is. It is a profession. It is an occupation. And like any other, you don't buy your degree on line with a piece of software and you don't earn your degree reading a book or watching a single DVD. You do earn your degree buy getting educated by professionals, testing what you know, and making adjustments if you did not apply the information properly. This information is the same but everyone is different. Think of any university. The same information is taught to all. Some go on to be top-notch lawyers, doctors, and scientists making the highest salaries out there. Some do well, but are not the highest paid. Some don't make it. Can the ones that don't make it say that what they learned was incomplete? Paul Lange Vice President of Services Pristine Capital Holdings, Inc.
  11. Have you ever been excited about a new experience? Maybe heading to the golf course for the first time or going to the go-kart track to show your stuff? Do you remember the butterflies and excitement building inside as you near this new experience? It's common to have such exhilaration when a new experience arises. Just imagine with me for a moment, that you were going to have some weekend fun with the family at the go-kart track. As you seat yourself into the kart your smile is ear to ear. You feel the butterflies fluttering as you rev the gas getting ready for this experience. Prior to taking off, you glimpse over and notice your family giving you the thumbs up, chanting things like go dad, you can do it, you can take these guys, show them who's boss. Suddenly you realize your eyebrows are lowering, your smile moves to a determined grit and you now have something to prove. This is not a fish story about the one that got away; you have a live audience! This friendly little driving around the track has escalated to the Daytona 500, so it seems. You move onto the track with fierce determination and no experience I might add. That's ok, how hard can it be, I drive to and from work every day and have never had so much as a fender bender. You move around the track like you're the only one there and suddenly you get squeezed out and your kart slams into the tires. As if that is not enough, you get rear ended from another kart. That actually hurt. With pride on the line, you immediately get back into action only to have a similar experience. This one could leave a mark! Now intimated by this new adventure and in a great deal of pain, you finish your ride and force your smile every time you near your rooting family with the bulk of your thoughts concentrating on when this ride will be over. I share this story with you to press upon you how most people enter the trading environment. Excitement turns into determination which often leads to pain. If you FIRE before you AIM that is... The bulk of new traders will embark on their new career this year that is similar to the story above. They fail to practice, and get kicked around and 90% of them will not exist as a trader in 12 months. They have told all of their friends about their new career and when they ask how things are going they shrug it off with "The market is not right yet" or some other excuse that is just as poor as the first one. You see, people that want to start trading to offset their income or potentially make a career of it have no business entering the trading environment until they get education and practice. The title of this article is how most people attempt everything. They get READY and FIRE before they know what they are really AIMING for. Some ventures may be forgiving but Wall Street takes no prisoners. It will under-handedly seek out anyone with little to no experience or practice and make sure you end up in the tires. Do not let that happen to you! Do you walk over to the fireplace and ask it "If you give me some heat, I will give you some wood"? No, it doesn't work that way, nor does trading, and you absolutely have to get education FIRST. Many people only have one shot at this, burn through your capital before education and you may never get the opportunity to share what is one of the greatest businesses on the planet. I mean think about it, a business that you can work anywhere in the world with just a laptop and a internet connection; a business with no employees, no overhead, no inventory, etc... etc... Most businesses exist for 11 months to pay the bills and employees, only to make a profit in just one of the twelve months. Your trading career should not be taken lightly especially when you think about what you have your hands on. You should not open a business without education and training, so why would trading be any different? Trading potentially could give you more freedom and enjoyment than you could possibly imagine if you take the right steps to succeed. If you were to open a franchise do you think you could do that before you spend the required time practicing and learning the proper procedures? Not a chance! Seek education, practice and have the desire to win, so you don't get "pushed into the tires". Get READY - AIM -FIRE!!!! Traders' Tip: Pristine education is the single most proactive ingredient one could learn prior to risking capitol in trading. The Pristine Method has been proven time and time again as a technical approach that has been developed and time-tested over the past 18 years by Pristine. This dynamic trading methodology is now used by professional and semi-professional traders all over the world. Make sure to register for any of our other FREE programs that interest you the most. I would be happy to see you join us and to answer any questions you may have. Jeff Yates Contributing Editor Interactive Trading Room Moderator Gap, Intra-Day and Swing Trading Specialist Instructor and Traders Coach
  12. If you're not aware that the markets have been going higher and nearing all-time highs, you must not have a television. Finally, the media has noticed the bull market that started from the 2009 crash low. Now, that drop and low was about as ugly as it gets and of course, we really didn't know that it was 'the low" until a bit later. However, the markets have been going up for just over four years and the media is just getting excited! The saying, "Better late than never" doesn't always apply when it comes to the markets. With the markets late typically means losing money, but can it be different this time? I am seeing some not so obvious signs of change that could be signaling that this market has a way to go in the long-term. There has been a huge amount of money pumped into the system to hold off recession, deflation and bankruptcy of countries. We can logically assume that the equity markets believe that it has worked since most are at or nearing all-time highs. However, the fact that interest rates have been in a decline for years tells us there has been little demand for that money for business investment (higher risk, higher rewards). Rather, a lot of that money has been going buying bonds (low risk, low reward), which causes interest rates to drop. During times of economic expansion the demand for money increases (borrowing) and interest rates rise. The charts are starting to point to this. The above being said, long-term interest rates have been in an overall downtrend since the early 1980s. However, during times of an improving economy those interest rates have risen within that very long-term downtrend. So interest rate movement up and down is relative to this. The above chart is of the ETF symbol TBT, which is for being short bonds prices and interest rates moving higher. In it, we see a classic pre-bottom free-fall drop on high volume, a lower low with less momentum and low volume and a retest of the low with an increase of volume. The next step would be to move above the most recent highs. As explained above, a move higher in interest rates suggests a pickup in business and the economy. If that is the case, then stocks that are affected by that like industrial metals would have been under performing and should now move up with interest rates. Let's look. The chart of United States Steel Corp. (X) looks very much like the chart of TBT. Not surprising. If interest rates move up (bond prices down), I think that X should have a minimum potential to move to the 30 area. If the economy is at a significant turning point, and I hope it is for all of us, the potential for X is much higher. You now know the inter-market analysis to monitor. Alcoa Inc. (AA) is a manufacture of aluminum, which is used in planes, cars, construction and even the foil that you use in the kitchen. As you can see, its chart is also similar to that of TBT and X. If one moves higher they all should. These bottoming patterns do take time and when they move higher they typically don't do it with a lot of speed until others take notice of the movement. Especially, the media that are just starting to realize that the markets are really going up! This not so obvious sign of change is encouraging after such an extended period of bad economic times. It's early in the turn and false starts (bottoms) do happen. Right now the charts are pointing to better times for everyone and the potential for more people to make money. In the prior Chart of the Week (COTW), I showed you a simple approach to market timing. It has not given a sell signal, but don't stop monitoring those internal gauges. It may take the market blasting higher to get those option traders all-in. If we get that sell signal, remember this is a short-term signal. We will need more information for any long-term change of bias and with what I have explained in this COTW, that change isn't likely should TBT, X and AA move higher. PRISTINE - A Trading Style, Often Imitated, But NEVER Matched! All the best, Greg Capra President & CEO Pristine Capital Holdings, Inc.
  13. Trading today is more popular than ever. Countless individuals flock each year to the markets, hoping to make large amounts of money, many attracted by misleading commercials promising simplicity and easy access to riches. Many of these aspiring traders fail. In as much as we would like to think that each individual commits different and very particular mistakes in his quest for success, my experience as both a trader and Pristine Certified Trainer (PCT) has shown me that most traders typically fall prey to the same problems and mistakes. The following are just but some of the typical ones: Lack of a Trading Plan. Most traders lack a well conceived plan to trade the markets, and most mistakes committed by them can be summed up in this category. The lack of a decent plan means that the trader won't know which "events" to focus on, the rules to trade those events, money management rules, etc. Typical mistakes such as not taking stops and overtrading can be attributed to this problem. Lack of Confidence in his Tactics. Traders will only execute effectively if they're confident about the odds of any particular tactic. Learning it in a seminar isn't enough. You have to test it yourself, and reach a level of comfort and confidence that will allow you to execute with precision. Trading Under Monetary Pressures. Since people think that this is an easy road to riches, many leave their jobs or expect to make an immediate living trading the markets. Nothing is more detrimental to your success as a trader than facing the pressure to perform. Now, traders are focused on money, instead of technique and this leads to "dollar counting" which is detrimental to a traders progress. Trading with Insufficient Capital. Undercapitalized traders face two typical problems. One is the fact that they'll tend to take positions that will utilize a big percentage of their accounts, which in turn might produce losses that will be more significant than they should be. This is another reason why traders don't take stops. Lack of Proper Technology or Too Much Reliance on Only Technology. Traders that lack the proper technology, either because of the fear of using advanced systems or lack of commitment to obtaining them as a necessary cost of doing business, face a debilitating disadvantage as they can't process information quickly enough, and as we all know, this is a business that deals with the rapid analysis of information. On the other hand, there are those that think that technology alone, without the proper training and method, can solve their problems. An aspiring trader with no method, who just relies only on technology, is operating at a huge disadvantage. KURT CAPRA Contributing Editor Instructor and Traders Coach
  14. Good Morning All: If you are an experienced trader, you can skip reading this article. If you are new, or if you have been at this less than a year and not making money yet, you may want to read this. If you have been at it more than a year and are not making money, you probably will not read this. To a Handful of Traders Out There I have to accept the fact that there are very few people willing to recognize in the early stages of trading that they need an education. It should seem obvious, as it is the only acceptable route in any other high-paying profession. While I have to accept that fact, I do not really understand it. Having excepted it, I know that the next best thing we can do at Pristine is to make sure people stay under our wing until they are ready to advance their careers through a proper education. We want to make sure that you stay with us even if you have not yet made a commitment to be a full or part-time trader, or to manage your own long-term money. To do that we want to continuously improve you and your knowledge by offering a variety of ways to obtain great information for free. Every 6 to 8 weeks we do a seminar called "Online Trading Essentials". There is a nominal charge for it but if you are currently a Pristine student you can get it for free. If you are in the process of discussing a seminar with a counselor, you may also be able to get it free. Talk to your counselor. It is a great class that delivers four and a half hours of nonstop critical information about many of the topics that traders need to know about trading. Everything from advanced concepts about risk management and share sizing, down to what a level II screen is for, and how to use news and/or fundamental analysis in your trading. This is all information that is critical to know, yet on the other hand is too basic to actually be taught in our paid for seminars as they focus purely on technical or more advanced topics. In addition, we are introducing a new series of "Power Trading Workshops" that are designed to deliver more information and they come to you Monday through Thursday (some weeks may only be three days) at 4.15, just after the market closes. Some of these will have new topics that have not been discussed, and some will blend some old favorites and new twists. Naturally, we still have new people who want to know about Pristine and about some of what we teach, and that will be included in some of the topics as well. You can view the schedule for these on our homepage or in the e-mails that you receive. They are under the topic of either "Power Trading Workshops", or "Free Webinars". Paul Lange Vice President of Services Pristine Capital Holdings, Inc.
  15. While there are many concepts and nuances to be learned to be a complete technical trader and/or investor, there are a few basic criteria that if followed can make making money easy or relatively easier. Of course, this requires having the patience and discipline to wait for these high probability setups to occur. Can you do it? I will show an example of what to look for. Then it's up to you. In the weekly chart of Google (GOOG), prices broke above price resistance with strong momentum. This was followed by the first pullback after that strength to Minor Support (mS). As a general rule, the first pullback to mS after a strong momentum break above resistance will always be buyable. This is based on the basic concept that resistance once broken will become support. This area of mS is where we know buyers will be. Now we wait to see the price action of that actually happening in this time frame and the daily time frame. This concept can be used in a combination of lower time frames as well. It also applies to any tradable instrument; that being Forex, E-minis, Commodities. The basics covered - Prices have made a strong move above price resistance and we wait for the first pullback to mS where buyers are. Then wait for confirming price action in that area. oving down to the daily time frame, GOOG was not looking bullish at all before the turn. However, realize that the lower time frame never looks bullish when the higher time frame is pulling back to mS. For example, if you saw the EUR/USD currency pair in a 60-min. uptrend that was pulling back to mS, the 5-min. time frame would be in a downtrend. The expectation is that the lower time frame is going to turn in the area of mS in the higher time frame. Now wait for confirming the price action in the lower time frame before taking a position. As GOOG moved into the mS area shown on the weekly time frame, the confirming price action began (in this time frame) with a gap higher and then a strong close into resistance. Here is where it gets interesting and it will become obvious if the big money buyers are continuing to step up. We want to see that big green bar's low and ideally its mid-point defended by the buyers. While the buy signal candle came five days later, it could have come after only two days. There is no set number and this is where our Bar by Bar analysis concept comes in to tell us when GOOG will move. Bar by Bar analysis combines each new bar's meaning within the context of our bigger picture analysis. One bar can be meaningless in of itself, but when combined with our bias and the other bars, it's a powerful concept. The basics covered - While our lower time frame is moving down, the higher time frame area of mS is where prices should produce the price action that confirms that area and reversal of some type happens. Reversals can happening in many ways, so do not be set on it having to happen in "your way." Once the action occurs find an entry signal using Bar by Bar analysis. I have shown you the basics of what to look for in those easy money situations using two time frames; I used the weekly and daily. We can also take that bias into the intra-day time frames as I explained above with EUR/USD, but it could be anything. Now, let's look at some detail that occurred on the 60-Min. of GOOG that showed the "early turn" and a couple of Pristine concepts to understand the price action of the turn. As GOOG was trending lower into the area of mS on the weekly time frame a 60-Min. bearish Wide Range Bar (-WRB) formed accompanied with a huge volume spike. That's a bearish event, but remember this was right into the weekly mS! That was followed by a stall and bullish Wide Range Bar (+WRB), that's a very bullish group of events that started the early turn. Pristine Tip: That 3-bar reversal was the Bottoming Tail (BT) on the daily time frame. The Advanced Candlestick reader understands how different arrangements of candles can mean the same thing in the same time frame and/or different time frames. Names of candlesticks are meaningless and are more likely to confuse traders that use them or worse by causing avoidable losses and/or missed opportunities. Once GOOG gapped up and ran higher a Pristine Price Void (PPV) was created. In other words, there was now no price support below for traders to bid at. Support would need to be "created" for traders to bid at. Creating support and resistance is a powerful concept used by Pristine Traded Traders (PTT) to see where the big money is entering prior to existing support or resistance. Pristine Tip: Strong upward price moves often do not pullback to support, they create it. With the bias from the time frames shown above, intra-day traders could move to lower time frames of their choice to find confirming buy setups to enter. At this point, this is still the case. Side note, while I have used a 20-MA on all time frames. It has no relevance to being actual support, resistance or the trend. It is simply a "visual aid" to speed the analysis once understood. PRISTINE - A Trading Style, Often Imitated, But NEVER Matched!!! Greg Capra President & CEO Pristine Capital Holdings, Inc.
  16. Good Stocks - Bad Market In a correcting market environment you better know how to determine which stocks are "acting well" and which aren't if you're going to trade the long side. Acting well is a term often used to communicate that one tradable instrument is outperforming something else. This could be the broader market, a sector, another stock or a market internal gauge. For the stocks we are going to look at it, will be relative to the broader markets. It can also mean how that tradable instrument reacts to gaps, support, resistance or the lack thereof. In addition to knowing which stocks are acting well, you'll need to be able to determine with relative accuracy when the market is likely to bounce a bit. In a correcting market even the stocks acting well have a greater tendency not to rise when the market is falling. However, when the market makes a short-term low these stocks are likely to act even better. Meaning, go higher. The first thing that we want to consider is the market timing. For this example I will use the Nasdaq 100 ETF symbol QQQ, which has actually been weaker than the S&P 500 and the Russell 2000. QQQ has reached its first area of price support since breaking down (closed the VOID) and has stabilized between 65 and 66. Friday, prices broke below the prior three days lows, which were very close to each other (a minor breakdown) and rallied back up toward the high of the day. Pristine Tip: A Bottoming Tail (BT) bar that forms in this way - at prior price support - is a strong indication of a short-term low. Now we need to see if QQQ can trade above Friday's high for confirmation of this price action. The chart of YAHOO (YHOO) is most interesting in that it bottomed at close to the same time that QQQ topped. YHOO began to show its strength when it was able to move sideways, rather than retrace lower after the strong rally that created a Pristine Price Void (PVV) below. As QQQ began its decline, YHOO moved sideways at the prior resistance to the left and absorbed that supply (red area). This is what I call acting well. Once it formed a new support pivot, buyers came in when prices dropped back to retest that area. Lastly, YHOO gapped above the sideways consolidation it had formed creating another PVV and has held above that area. Wow, YHOO really acts well! CREE is another stock that acts well. While it did have a failed breakout and then move lower with QQQ, it recovered relatively quickly. Like YHOO, CREE has moved sideways at its prior resistance and is absorbing the supply there (red area). Plus this is happening after a large gap up that created a PVV. Also, on 10-19 when QQQ formed a Bearish Wide Range Bar (-WRB), CREE formed a BT! CREE then formed a new support pivot, has not even come close to test it, and after Friday's bullish day it isn't likely to. Cree is looking real good. I pointed out that Harley Davidson (HOG) had formed a bottom on 10-19 on my first post on Twitter. While HOG was showing relative weakness to the broader market prior to October, it was bottoming. As I showed at Twitter and Facebook, the reason this bottoming action really interested me is because the monthly time frame of HOG was a Pristine Buy Setup (PBS). You can check out the charts at Twitter and Facebook. Like YHOO and CREE, HOG is moving sideways after a strong move at resistance and is absorbing the supply there (red area). Notice that HOG broke below the prior two day's lows on Friday. While it did not recover back the high of the day; these breaks can result in a move higher if prices move above high. HOG is acting well too. All the best Greg Capra President & CEO Pristine Capital Holdings, Inc.
  17. n a prior Chart of the Week (COTW) titled Bringing Common Sense to Trading Part I, I explained how to determine turning points and continuation points with price action alone. This week I am going to show why prices trended as they did Friday. In that prior COTW, I also told you that price oscillators, various other indicators and drawing lines to determine turning points or support and resistance have nothing to do with prices reversing when they do. Friday's drop should reinforce that fact for you. To an extent, these analysis tools do have a self-fulfilling prophecy at times since so many people have been taught to believe the fallacy and use them. The internet based online trading education industry perpetuates these hocus-pocus indicator based methods. Not much has changed over the years. When I started to learn about trading the markets there was no online education, since there was no internet. However, there were mailed letters that gave recommendations and some education. Like most online educators now, those letters also used the indicator mythology. It's not easy getting started with so much information to sift through about how to use these types of technical analysis to trade and invest. I did not side-step the learning and use of indicators, but I did eventually see the truth. Through these COTW letters and our other services I hope you will see through these deceptions that create confusion about price movement. Okay, let me explain what happened on Friday. Before we get to Friday, above is a chart that I posted at the Pristine Facebook Fan Page and the Group Page last Wednesday. In it I showed why sellers would show up the next day, and they did. I also said that ES (ES is the e-mini contract for the S&P 500) retraced further than I thought it would, but those Topping Tails (TT) suggest that short-sellers are waiting to pound it again. This alone did not suggest or predict how much prices would fall on Friday. However, what made that possible was the way prices moved up to the area of the prior TTs. The key here is the fact that there is virtually no overlapping of the candles on the way up. Each candle started at or very near the prior candle close and did not retrace back into the prior candle. In other words, this is a continuous fluid movement. There is no uncertainty among the majority traders. Prices are going up; buy or get out of the way! This arrangement of candles displays strength, power and momentum. But if that is the case, how could prices fall as far and as hard as they did? While this arrangement of candles does display strength, it is the weakest link also. As I have explained in the past, one of the most powerful concepts to understand is that of supply and demand. Where sellers and buyers are and when there is a Void of them. The way prices moved up into the supply area and the TTs (little to no overlap between candles) it created what I refer to as a Pristine Price Void (PPV). When prices move upward so fast there is no support under prices. There are no pullbacks or sideways consolidations. So there is nowhere to buy a pullback based on a price support as a reference point (demand area). There is a Void of support or demand because prices moved higher so fast. In addition, as current prices move sideways over time they move away from any small support area that might be there. This makes any small support area irrelevant. This is a common question students have. What about that small area of price support? What is more powerful or meaningful, that small area of consolidation or the bearish daily time frame and intra-day bearish shock? It's the weight of the evidence to consider as a whole, not one piece of information. Pristine Tip: A truly strong momentum move does not need support. It creates it. I discussed this in the COTW Bringing Common Sense to Trading Part I. Look for momentum moves that begin from a consolidation and have a PVV overhead. Not moves that end at the top of a range. In the chart above, I've shown the daily time frame at the upper left and the 60-min. time frame. In the 60-min. you can see how little congestion (stall in prices moving higher) there is, especially on the Tuesday the 16th. As prices moved sideways and away from what little intra-day overlapping there was, it made those areas less relevant as a reference point of support. The essence of a Head and Shoulders top is that the upward move has ended when the new high fails (the head) and that the time moving sideways (the Shoulders) signals distribution. That price pattern creates a Void below. Also in this example, there is a shock that occurred on the 18th and confirmed the bearishness of the bigger daily picture. Let's assume that you had no idea of the bearish big picture and potential for the larger decline. It's conceivable that you could have thought that prices have fallen a lot and would bounce on Friday and looked for long trades. Well that's fine, but unless the price action becomes climactic near a prior support area or there is an actual trend change on the time frame being traded (in this case the 5-min.), there would be no objective reason to buy. This is a rule all Pristine students and prop traders are taught from the start. Include it into your trading plan and it will eliminate a lot of unnecessary loses. I hope this COTW has helped you understand why prices moved as they did on Friday and see that the commonplace indicator based mythology is unnecessary and misleading. I will be presenting a Free Workshop on Tuesday October 30th. At it I will be discussing what we covered today and other Pristine trading strategies. It will be similar to the coaching sessions I do with students and hope to talk to you there. All the best, Greg Capra President & CEO Pristine Capital Holdings, Inc.
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