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Found 32 results

  1. jfw215

    J' Trade Log

    Hi folks, I will be posting my stock setups that I will be taking from 1:30p to 4p EST M-F. My trading is heavily influenced by Thalestrader, who has left a treasure trove of knowledge here at TL. My stock setups will target gapped stocks (S&P 500 constituents priced over $20) that consolidate and continue in the direction of the gap in the afternoon. Entries will include 123s and pullbacks to the 5 min 21 EMA. Please note I am currently on demo mode. I believe the keys to success in trading are really just a few simple things: Embracing the probabilistic mindset, which includes taking every valid setup regardless of how I feel about the outcome and not changing strategy based on recent results. Cutting losers quick and letting winners run. Unconditional self love and acceptance. This is probably the most important thing and the ONLY secret there is. By being ok with making mistakes, being wrong, taking losers, giving self money, one can finally learn to trade without fear. This is probably where most people take the most time to learn (10 years for me). Here we go. Blue line denotes entry, red line are my stops adjusted to as close to real time as possible. Today: -41c, +13c, +0 Best, J
  2. Hello I am interested in starting day trading, I have been trading the last year in long term investing but lately I have been getting really interested in day trading. I am from Canada and would like some pointers on where to start and what softwares, screeners, platforms etc to use here in Canada. Thanks in advance!
  3. Hello, I wish to get into trading(maybe day trading). But my question is what should I focus on learning, stocks(btw I know about the $25000 limit but I don't know if I am going trade that many times a week) or Forex, atm I plan to start with 500-1000$. My background would be that I have taken an economics class in which one part was stocking as we had to play a stock market game for around 3 months. Also if you are wondering I don't plan to start real trading for at least a few months(I Plan to practice with demo accounts first and find a profitable strategy first). Thanks for the help!
  4. Let's assume I was able to imply dividends from liquid options for the next 3 years, but I want to price an option expiring in the 4rd year from now. How would practitioners normally extrapolate implied dividends? From what i've observed there is a significant risk premium in implied dividends far out (implied divs are sold at discount). Actually the dividend term structure is declining. Therefore probably it makes more sense to extrapolate implied dividend rather than historical growth
  5. Hi all traders, I'm Larry Pi @ ninZa.co ninZa.co provides traders with essential, affordable, excellent, and elegant NinjaTrader indicators. There are also many FREE AWESOME indicators that you can download at ninZa.co. Please visit my website and pick the indicators you like/need! Link: ninZa.co
  6. What GoPro Has Done Right Now that the stock has surpassed the 90 mark, the owner has a worth of over 5bn (still holding 48% of the company after IPO). It raises the question as to what has Gopro done right? 1. Actually SELL something. (I’m looking at you Facebook) I’m not saying that you need to sell something physical, but when it comes down to it, people have faith in companies that actually do something. 2. Life is a popularity contest. I’ll quote Jesse Jones on this one “What other company do you own the product you trade?” (Forgive me if the quote is off Jesse). Simply put, Gopro is in people’s faces day after day. Every time you go on YouTube, there will be a new video up, and many people, including myself, own one. They aren't just selling an idea; they are selling a physical product attached to an idea. Business side: What have they done right? A few key points here you will see effect the stock in the coming months. 1. Their launch date was chosen to perfection. 2. Mid October they are slated to launch a new camera. This will be perfect timing if the stock does falter, breathing new life into the company. They will be on the front page with this move. Not only will it help their stock (assuming they don’t have a bendable camera #bendgate), but they will reap the rewards of the increased media attention from their successful IPO. Free advertising. 3. Here is the big one. Their lockup expiration is 12/23/2014. Christmas Eve. The last point is what I will end on. They have crucially chosen a time to allow for their 180 day lockup period to end on Christmas Eve… This goes in the best form of announcing any kind of bad news late on Friday to let the market forget about it over the weekend. How do you prevent a sell off of company stocks post lockup period? Provide the sellers with one of the quietest times of the year in the stock market. Well played Gopro. A bit about me: I'm a Futures and Forex trader who has been personally trading for years. I find all aspects of trading interesting, and on occasion, like this one, I even write articles on the stock market. Trader psychology has facinated me since the first time I moved from a paper trading to real live trading. The difference sparked an interest that I write about today.
  7. While doors are closing for many people with regards to employment as a result of financial crisis, you've still got an easy method of making ends meet and creating more income when you participate in seminars. In courses both online and offline, you'll find that there are many different ways for you to make money and there certainly are a handful that allows you to work at home. One of these systems is called day trading and it's when you enter the trading market buying and selling stocks. Whenever you obtain know-how about how it works by means of getting yourself with an education and learning on trading, you'll earn profits from the difference you obtain involving the selling price as well as the buying expense of financial instruments. Following training about how to day trading, you'll learn that the distinct difference from online trading in general is that you trade intraday. With regard to an active day trader, positions close towards the end of the trading session and you're off to fight another day tomorrow. Way back, tools such as direct access and high frequency were purely available to financial companies. Yet these days, you can also access these tools yourself and you are able to come close to obtaining probably the most successful careers in trading. Attending training seminars as well as courses will likely give you additional information regarding the strategies that make trading happen. Making use of your direct access as well as high frequency tools, you'll have the ability to analyze the trends on the market more readily and precisely. These types of tools and education seminars will certainly offer you specific data so you're able to measure holding period on positions in just a few seconds. Yet again, you'll be going after all this trading intraday. Remember that every second is important. You have to be active with your work when you need to succeed in this particular trading. No matter what you understand in classes, you need to make use of it inside the fast-paced realm of online day trading. In case you trade in stocks, you'll be easily left behind and encounter loses if you don't get yourself an education about trading. Therefore if signing up for a formal class is just not a choice for you, it is easy to choose seminars and courses. They won't take most of your time and usually in just couple of days, you'll have the hang of it and off you go towards a brilliant livelihood. There's a whole lot of money you may make with finance institutions such as commodities, options or stocks. Familiarize yourself with buying and selling these in day trading and bring your self a steady flow of cash.
  8. When everything comes together, the best technique to make money in the stock market. If you don't have a watch list, you are losing money.
  9. Do you ever wonder what separates an average trader from a great trader? There are two very important things that differentiate these two types of traders: Discipline and Confidence. Today, I would like to focus on the latter. Being a confident trader is paramount to succeeding. Quite frankly, without it, it will be very difficult to attain a high level of success. There is a fine line between confidence and doubt, especially in trading. After several winning trades, most people typically have a positive approach to their next trade. However, after a few unsuccessful trades, many traders lose that "swagger" and the shrouds of doubt begin to creep into their mind. These demons can appear in several aspects of trading. Sometimes it's as simple as being afraid to pull the trigger on your next trade. Other times it's that strong desire to make your money back at any cost and then taking every trade you see, despite the patterns being of lower quality. Confidence will even affect trade management. For example, selling the winners too soon, and allowing the losers to run right into your stop loss, and on the extremely undisciplined side, letting losers run past your stop loss. These are just a few of the things that can happen when a trader loses confidence and let's doubt cloud their vision. This is why confidence can literally make or break a trader! I'm sure many of us have watched a basketball game in which a great player scores 50 points. After the game the interviewer commonly asks, "You were on fire! So what was it like out there?" The player often responds with something to the effect of, "I hit a few early on, built some confidence and after that I was in the zone! The basket looked twice as big as usual! I was really feeling it tonight." Trading is not much different. After 4 or 5 winning trades in a row, we believe we can do nothing wrong. Why? Confidence. On the flip side, if a basketball player misses 10 shots in a row, they might be more hesitant to take the next shot. However, the best players still want the ball. Despite missing 10 shots in a row, they still want to take the game winning shot. In this situation most average players would shy away from that kind of pressure, especially after such a terrible game. But the best always want the ball, regardless of the situation. It's simply a matter of confidence. Down to their core, they still believe they have what it takes to win the game, regardless of what happened previously. Do you have that level of confidence? How can we keep a confident, consistent approach to trading despite the inevitability of losses? The first thing any good trader will do is OBJECTIVELY evaluate the situation. Take a step back and look at the trades you've taken and ask yourself if they are within your trading plan, and what was the root cause of the problem? Were the patterns lacking in quality? Were you distracted by an outside influence or some other event in your life? Was the market not conducive to trading (i.e. a no-follow-through market)? Or was it just a matter of simple odds? Yes, sometimes it's just a matter of odds. Although it doesn't happen often, on occasion even good trades don't work. Unfortunately, after most traders have lost a few in a row, they get very "gun-shy" and start thinking about all the negative things that could happen if they took another trade. In this way, we start to question whether a certain pattern is "good enough" or whether we ourselves are good enough to make it in this business. By this point, our positive mental approach has been shattered, filled with fear and riddled with doubt. So the next time a great pattern appears; we will often pass on the opportunity, due to our increased sense of loss. One of the huge differences between a novice trader and a successful experienced trader is the ability to recognize what is happening, without letting our emotions make the decisions for us. A professional trader is a disciplined, objective individual who is extremely confident in their approach. Not only does this relate to taking trades, but it also relates to managing trades. Many novice traders will sell too soon in fear that the trade will go against them, yet they are all too happy to let a trade stop them out. The novice will take full advantage of the losers, yet cut the winners short. The root of this problem is confidence, or lack thereof. For a professional trader, his/her hope for gain far exceeds their fear of loss, whereas with a novice trader; their fear of loss far exceeds their hope for gain. The experienced trader knows that in the long run, over the course of a week, a month or a year, the odds will work in their favor. So, maybe they lose 3 in row, or perhaps they have a trade that gets within 3 or 4 cents of their target only to watch it pull back and stop them out. Despite these circumstances, they are not tempted to deviate from their trading plan when the same situation arises again, because they are supremely confident that the odds will work in their favor in the longer term. How many people have "almost" gotten to their target, only to watch the trade pull back and stop them out? What happens the next time this situation occurs? Many novices will take the money and run, in fear that the same situation might happen again. Once bitten twice shy. Yet, to their dismay, this time, the trade continues on and not only hits their 1st target, but eventually goes on to hit their final target. Frustrating isn't it!? This is why it is so important to stay disciplined and confident at all times and to not adjust your plan until you have back tested the results over a period of several weeks or several months. Professional traders come in everyday with the same positive attitude, expecting to make money. Even if, for some reason, they lose money on Monday, this absolutely will not change their approach on Tuesday or Wednesday. They wake up with the same belief every day, and that belief is the product of confidence. They are confident that what they are doing is right, and it will produce results. Even the best traders have losing trades, and on occasion, losing days. Losing is part of this business, it is completely unavoidable. It's just a matter of time before you have a losing trade. This doesn't mean you are a failure, or that you don't know what you're doing, it just means that for 1 trade out of 100's or even 1000's something went wrong. It's our job to figure out what went wrong, and to fix it. Remaining confident and positive allows the astute trader to quickly evaluate the situation and move on with even more confidence than before, because they've now eliminated one more way to lose. Remember, confidence breeds success, and success breeds confidence!! So, the next time you find yourself in a rut, perhaps having lost several trades in a row, do not let fear and doubt creep into your psyche. Just remain focused on the task at hand, which is to find quality patterns that produce results. We've all had losing trades; it's how we handle them that will define our success. Remember, those "few" losing trades will be very insignificant compared to a lifetime of trades. Don't let your fear of loss overpower your hope for gain, because the disciplined, confident trader is a successful trader! Always stay positive and objective! Jared Wesley The Confident Trader Day Trader School
  10. Wow what a fun Friday, Really shows how current events can effect the market. The es futures had (2) 20 point moves then a 10 point move as we sold off into the close. You don't get to see this everyday! Every trading day as I broadcast live on DayTradingRadio I point out certain levels and zones on the es chart these I call HPZ (High Probability Zones) and they are based on a dual stochastic method I developed over the years. Taking into consideration 2 periods, a long and short look back. A 40 period and a 14 period. I refer to these two as a fast signal (14) and a slow signal (40) you can see the difference on how fast then rotate from overbought to oversold. Over a long and continuous period of studying these 2 signals I started to notice a synergy between them, Which produced a signal better together then there individual effects. Now alone this is a great stand alone indicator but when combined with some other indicators the percentage of success only goes up. When you watch DTR you see in real time how these indicator work and its never after the fact. The fact is it works and works even better when combined with certain zones. These could be areas based off of channels and trend lines, previous support and resistance, Fibonacci's or many of the other popular indicators. How do you know which one to use? Well personal preference I guess to start of with. For me the true signal comes with the combination or the dual stochastics on the 1min time frames combined with the 5 min time frame and the 14,4,3 stochastics. I always discuss this on the show so if you want more explanation please ask. Now lets take this to the next level!! Next week, Monday to be exact at 11:00am et We will be having FuturesTrader71 back on the site. FT71 is a market profiler specializing in Volume Profile analyst. He is great at what he does and currently a Managing partner at Stage 5 trading corp. Volume profile is a very important factor in trading the futures and FT71 will be sharing with us his market anaysis for the coming week. This will be weekly event on Mondays and I am sure he will be in and out of the trading room throughout the week. What I will be doing is plotting all his levels on the Es chart that you see everyday and looking for the convergence of his levels and my signals. I can't wait to see the results of both his levels and the market reaction to those and the combination of both volume profile and stochastics. This will be a great addition to the site and I am happy that DTR and Stage 5 will be working together going forward. We are also announcing an Ultimate Trader Showdown event in the next couple of weeks. We have a large futures trading community here that trade everyday and I am both proud and impressed with their success and professionalism I am happy to expand the Futures Section. Chart larger Image http://daytradingradio.com/include/data/files/2013/09/06/stochasticsignalchart.jpg?f Watch Live Market 8AM - 4PM EST href="http://daytradingradio.com/amember/go.php?r=2&i=l0
  11. As the markets rip higher and push charts to their limits, traders start to look for the market to collapse under it's own weight. I was seeing a tremendous amount of discussion on when to short the market and even myself have started to act on some high flyers by taking some puts and bearish ETF's. But I have seen this before and it's not a fight I want to be in, The more negative talk of the market needing to come back in or to rest, will just grind this market higher. I said this months ago. Not until people feel like they are missing the boat, or even better, my sister getting back into the markets, will this market sustain a correction more than a few weeks. It's only been 5 years since the last financial meltdown, and that scarred a lot of people who had trusted the economy and the markets. Now, they see the Teflon market brush off debt issues, a divided government, unemployment, and anything else they can come up with. Maybe a new crisis? Nope. Been there with the situation with Syria and Russia. Earnings? Nope. Sorry. I know the Hindenburg Omen. Don't get me going on that one. This market might go down when WLT gets bought out, but pigs will fly then too and that we all know is bullish. I don't make guesses in the market based on opinions. Everyone will tell you something's wrong but unless you put blinders on, you might miss the next big market move. I think I will get bulldozed in my puts but they are a good hedge at this point in the market. All I want to do is profit when the markets move up or down and we have. The last month was near perfect each trade a quality High Probability Set-up. For a special post, I decided to share what I will be looking for, in detail, when it comes to an opportunity to short this market. I probably will not initiate any new shorts until i see a clear reversal in the markets. For me, I focus on adding the reversal candles to the HPS core indicators, as we are extended and technically overbought and up against my target trend line 1745. I want to look for that reversal candle to show up. This could be in the indexes or individual stocks. Below is something you will see in a educational course I am writing for the HPS. This is a rough draft of a small section but felt it is important for the up coming week's The candle is comprised of two components; the body and the wick (sometimes referred to as “shadow”). The body shows the open and closing prices and the wick shows the high and low points throughout the trading period. The image below gives a basic understanding of what a candlestick looks like and how it works. Over time, as the HPS methodology was developed, I was able to add important indicators to the formula to increase the probability of the success for the trade and continue to see the results that would unequivocally prove that this was the most successful method of trading in today's market. I would be fine with just keeping things as simple as they are, but over 19 years of trading I have noticed one more consistent signal that the markets produces that alone would be enough to trade on. When added to the HPS method and the underlying 5 studies (indicators) give us a tremendous entry for any trade long or short. To emphasize how good I know this is, if I was asked “John, do you think there is a "Holy Grail" in trading?" (I of course know there is no such thing) would answer by saying, "The HPS indicators are like baseball players. You are not going to hit a home run every time, but if you go back through history and took all the greats and put them on one team, that would be the HPS. Adding these 5 reversal candles to the formula it really ties everything together." These reversal candles are, in a sense, the 6th indicator to be considered when they appear with any of the core indicators. And the rules apply still that we need 3 or more core indicators converging to be considered a HPS. Personally, I would probably trade 2 cores and a reversal candle stick. 3 or 4 cores indicators and a reversal well that's as close as you will be to the Holy Grail. Lets take a look at those candlesticks. To be considered a reversal, there should be an existing trend to reverse. It does not have to be a major trend, but should be up for the short term or at least over the last few days. A dark cloud cover after a sharp decline or near new lows is unlikely to be a valid bearish reversal pattern. Bearish reversal patterns within a downtrend would simply confirm existing selling pressure and same for Bullish reversal patterns if we were to see a Piercing Pattern in an uptrend it really is just a continuation of the trend. HAMMERS: Hammer candlesticks form when a security moves significantly lower after the open, but rallies to close well above the intraday low. The resulting candlestick looks like a square lollipop with a long stick. If this candlestick forms during a decline, then it is called a Hammer. DTRS TIP: This is my favorite reversal. Knowing that the HPS method we are already looking at quality names and usually in a pull back that has extended far enough to signal oversold levels on the stochastics and most likely pulling back to a lower area of interest defined by a channel or support area. The hammer tends to test those limits and violate them taking out the remaining weak hands , stops etc. Then reverses and close on or near its highs and usually above the areal or support. This is a great set up and the hammer really confirms the entry zone. SHOOTING STAR: A single day pattern that can appear in an uptrend. It opens higher, trades much higher, then closes near its open. It looks just like the Inverted Hammer except that it is bearish. Same applies as the Hammer just opposite. ENGULFING PATTERN: A reversal pattern that can be bearish or bullish, depending upon whether it appears at the end of an uptrend (bearish engulfing pattern) or a downtrend (bullish engulfing pattern). The first day is characterized by a small body, followed by a day whose body completely engulfs the previous day's body. DTRS TIP: Another great candle to look for, Because it is not very common it is one of the candles technicians pick up on. Even though this is a great candlestick I would only trade it in concurrence with 2 or more core indicators lining up. Here is what a 2 day cross section of the pattern looks like to see how the stock gaps down and then moves up. DTRS TIP: When actively searching and scanning for HPS candidates, and I find a potential stock that is lining up properly, I will focus in on it. If I see a gap down (in the case of a long), and watch the action early on, (because it has multiple indicators lining up) I will look to start a position before the end of the day if we start trading above the previous days close . As I expect it to finish off with a strong candle. I can get a great position and very low risk entry. PIERCING PATTERN: A bullish two day reversal pattern. The first day, in a downtrend, is a long black day. The next day opens at a new low, then closes above the midpoint of the body of the first day. DARK CLOUD COVER: A bearish reversal pattern that continues the uptrend with a long white body. The next day opens at a new high then closes below the midpoint of the body of the first day. The opposite of the Piercing Pattern. Here is a great example of the combination of oversold stochastics, and reversal candles. You probably could put in an underlying trend line on this chart too. We will leave off for here now. There are hundreds of Candlestick patterns but these are the key reversals and when they line up with the HPS indicators they are the best risk vs reward set ups out there. In the next segment, I will show you how to use volume and one of the best key volume signals to trade off of. DayTraderRockStar Remember, don't trade over your means and nothing is guaranteed. News trumps all patterns. Meaning outside influences like bad or good news will break chart patterns but there is a great strategies to profit from that, but that's for another post
  12. Good Morning All; New traders often find themselves very challenged to have the discipline to follow the trading plans that they have created. The truth of it is, few have created any real plans and even fewer have a comprehensive working plan. Those that do, often find it difficult to follow their plan in the heat of the day. One of the reasons this can happen is because traders often do not spend their time properly, before, during, and after the market. Organize Your Time Of all the time a trader can devote to their occupation, most new traders usually fall into the schedule of spending 90% of their time actually trading the market. They spend 5-10% of their time preparing for the market, either the night before, or the morning prior. They spend 0-5% of their time following up on their trades after the market. Unfortunately, for new traders, this can be a big down fall. Being caught up in the excitement and overtrading, without stopping to evaluate trades, is a bad combination that can lead to failure. It is fine to be with the market all day. Just make sure your trading plan identifies what times you should be trading. It is a great idea when you start out to use about one third or your time preparing for every day, about a third of your time following up on your plays and reviewing them, and only one third actually trading. This is very different from where most new traders are. This does NOT mean that if you spend 6.5 hours trading, you must devote another 13 hours to your trading. You should have strategies identified that only take place at certain parts of the day. There should be parts of everyday where you will not be trading. You can use this time to review the morning trades, or the prior day's trades, and to update your record keeping and journals, and even paper trade new strategies. Closing Comments Many newer traders feel like they are missing something if they are not part of every possible trade. Patience will pay off for those who are selective and take the time to review each of their trades and learn from the ones that did not work out. The concept of following up on trades and how to do it is immensely important, and beyond the scope of this commentary. Make sure you understand it well, before trading.
  13. i am going to discuss about my trading style and strategy in low volume nyse ,nasdaq stocks:crap:
  14. Reviewing what we need to trade and showing this weeks past trades broken down into a basic easy to understand chart and discussion on limiting risk by staying out of risky events.
  15. I did a nice little segment on scanning for set ups but its toward the end of the video, Last week was pretty perfect on the called rally and it will beharder to call a top, but I don't think we are near any medium term top. Would consider PG as kick ass trade of the week.
  16. An S&P outlook for next week and should you sell in May and go away? Some great charts accompany this video which outlines what I see happening in the next 2 weeks. Basically the big question is will the market start to retreat soon? I myself can't help but look at recent historical charts (Back to 2010) and not get swayed to that side of the fence. The other side is just more upside. We see in the video and on the charts we have all the makings of a classic flag or continuation pattern. Even the stochastics have set up in a very nice level that could shift the momentum back to the buyers. We might have already seen this Friday. I think we have a nice 2 day rally early this week, then I want to watch to see if we fail at making new highs. That could happen after a nice bounce out of a flag. I see it a lot and would not bet against it. Better yet I don't want to take this bet and rather take shorter trades and try not to get into a position that I am dependent on the market but to trade the smaller intraday patterns with maybe a couple overnight holds.
  17. Important Reminder for all traders: The VIX is at its lowest level since June 2007 at 13.36
  18. Walgreen Company is the world's largest drug retailer, operates retail drug store and general merchandise. It is engaged in the retail sale of prescription and non-prescription drugs and general merchandise. The stock closed the last trading session at $40.13. In the past year, the stock has hit a 52-week low of $28.53 and 52-week high of $42.00. Technical indicators for the stock are neutral. WAG has a market cap of $37.93 billion and is part of the services sector. BALANCE SHEET Net earnings for the first quarter ended November 30, 2012 were $413 million or $.43 per diluted share. This was a 25.5% decrease in net earnings over the same quarter last year. Quarter net earnings and net earnings per diluted share, respectively, was $59 million, or $.06 per diluted share, in acquisition-related amortization, $34 million, or $.04 per diluted share. Net sales for the quarter ended November 30, 2012 decreased by 4.6% to $17.3 billion. VALUATION WAG PE stands at 18.16 above the industry’s average of 17.26. The stock is currently trading 6% below its intrinsic value of $42.80 this suggests that the stock is undervalued at these levels. WAG’s current Price/Sales of 0.54 is at the average of its industry of 0.52. The beta of 1.28 implies higher volatility of the stock with respect to the S&P 500. The firm pays a 2.6% dividend yield. WAG’s Total Debt/Equity is 34.70% The company has demonstrated neutral technical signs, the company stands on very sound financial footing but lower sales makes us cautious at current price level. WAG stock is 8.43% higher year to date. My overall score for WAG is 5.00/10.00 I am neutral on the stock.
  19. "How long will it take for me to become a profitable trader?" Boy - if I had a dime for each time I was asked this question, I would have one large collection of dimes. But I think I've done my work well. The majority of people who have sat in on my workshops and listened to me speak over the last couple of are no longer asking this question. So if you ever catch yourself wanting to ask this question, then please pay close attention to what I'm about to share with you here. Because once you understand the poisoned thinking from which this question comes from within you, you will be thankful that you now see things from a much more useful perspective. We are always, from an early age, comparing ourselves with others. From our upbringing and various influences on our thought processes as we grow up, we develop certain metrics and rules in order to determine what is 'right', 'wrong', 'fair', 'unfair', and unfortunately when we are 'good' or 'bad'. Stop doing it. Realize, that you are unlike any other individual or soul on this entire planet....or in the universe. So how can you compare yourself with others? It's like comparing apples and oranges. There are no comparisons because you are simply 'you'. You are not like anyone else. Period. So how long it took other traders to make a 'good' income at trading is completely irrelevant to you. And, if one thinks about it, what possible good could come of putting a 'standard' or an 'average amount of time it takes' out there as YOUR measuring stick simply because someone told you it was so. There are so many fallacies at work in a statement like this that it's ridiculous. If someone were to say it took 11 months, for example, for the 'average' trader to 'make it', what does that mean? Define an 'average trader'. Define 'make it'. And then ask, "What data do you have to support that 11 months is the average?" Did every single trader in the world give the person making this statement specific feedback on how much time it took them to 'make it'? NO! It's NOT POSSIBLE! The very criteria that would go into such a poll is subjective and thus makes the results entertaining, at most. Most of the truly amazing traders seem to 'disappear into the sunset'. They enjoy their privacy. And if they are amazing traders, they will be NO PART of such a silly 'poll' to help new traders provide themselves a measuring stick with which to measure their progress. They understand that this type of 'information' will not serve any trader. Think about that. Now, wouldn't you feel silly if you had actually measured yourself against some standard that was communicated to you which has no way of being based in reality? And even if it was, realizing that using it for yourself as a measuring stick is like comparing apples with oranges? Worse - I know people who have QUIT trading because of articles like this. What possible good could come of it? If you are just starting out, the thought of losing for 11 months before you 'make it' is pretty daunting. So it doesn't serve that person. If you have been trading for 8 months or thereabouts, chances are you will psychologically ruin yourself as you get closer to the 11 month mark and I can almost guarantee that you will not 'make it' by then simply because of human nature and the stress/pressing you will put on yourself. And, God forbid, you are past the 11 month marker already and you will make yourself feel like a complete idiot. Kurt Capra Contributing Editor Instructor and Traders Coach
  20. Having trouble adhering to your stops lately? Well, for some traders this is a difficult psychological demon to overcome. One that if not corrected quickly will lead to your demise as a trader. Sounds pretty serious, doesn't it? It is! For those of you who have this nagging problem, you already know the costs. So, let's try to do something about it before the damage is irreversible! As traders, one of the major weaknesses we have is being human. We are not robots, therefore we bring emotions with us wherever we go and with whatever we do. Being emotional creatures is not conducive to success in trading. Though our mind is a beautiful thing, we must always stay grounded and objective with our thoughts, which is no small task! Most traders who don't stick to their stops know they are doing the wrong thing, but, they also won't allow themselves to exit the position, because they are unable to accept a loss. By accepting a loss, they are admitting they are wrong, and in turn, they will lose money. So, instead of facing or accepting this pain, they choose to forego their stop loss, and let the stock move against them, in HOPES that it will turn around and eventually make them a winner. They will literally do anything to avoid the prospect of becoming a "loser." Sound familiar to anyone? Well, if I'm talking about YOU, then you need to continue reading... Most things we listen to or learn in our training seminars make perfect, logical sense. Find a pattern, stalk a quality entry, locate a reasonable area for the stop, pull the trigger, sit back and manage in between. Let the stock do the work for you. It's simple right? Heck, if someone asked you for technical advice about a particular stock, you could probably rattle off some very nice objective, logical advice worthy of a pro, as long as YOU are not in the stock yourself! Everything changes when it's our own money on the line. This causes many people to lose objectivity and become irrational. For some traders this nasty habit can be easily broken by going back through personal statistics and looking at the positive difference in your P/L by taking your stops versus not taking them. Unfortunately for many, merely looking back at past statistics is not enough. You've been ignoring your stops for so long, it's going to take some stronger medicine to cure this disease! The first thing you must decide on is this: Do you like trading? If the answer is yes, then the choice becomes very simple. Take your stops, or quit trading. Period! Take some time and really internalize those thoughts. Imagine your life as a trader, and all the positive things that go with it. The freedom to trade when and wherever you want, the potential to earn as much or as little as you desire, the ability to spend more time with loved ones etc. Now, picture your life without trading. Can you handle the alternative? If you don't like the alternative picture, then you are taking the first step towards correcting this habit. If you've decided that trading is your passion, then you will do whatever it takes to succeed. That includes taking your stops. So, before you enter any trade, you must first accept that the money is potentially GONE. If you are going to risk $100 on a trade, then BEFORE you enter the position, you must emotionally tell yourself, the $100 is gone. I no longer have it. After all, you can't lose something you don't have! If the thought of losing $100 is too frightening, then you need to lower the amount of money you are willing to lose per trade, until it becomes emotionally acceptable. If you cannot find a dollar amount small enough, then try using a simulator account and work your way up to trading with small shares. If that doesn't work, then there is a chance that this business is not for you. Always keep in mind that we are not going for homeruns, we are looking for base hits. We focus on a consistent approach to making money, something we can repeat day after day. We are not investors, we are technical traders. We have very specific parameters for our set-ups, and using stop losses is a large part of that process. When something does not work as we plan, we take the loss and reassess. We don't opine about the "what if's", we simply move on and stay objective. Remember, it's just one trade! So, don't let that "one" trade wipe out your account and destroy your trading aspirations. Is one trade worth that much? If you feel yourself losing control, then step back and slow things down or perhaps stop trading for a bit. Don't worry about missed opportunities because the market is not going anywhere. When you are ready to trade again, the market will still be there. If you need to, put a sign up in front of you that simply states, "I will adhere to my stop, no matter what!" Another approach might be to record yourself when you are feeling anxious about not taking a stop. Then go back and replay it afterwards to see what your emotional process was. A "consequence" system may work as well. For example, if you don't take your stop, then you are not allowed to play golf for 2 weeks. Take away something meaningful, something that will help promote change. As our own PMTR moderator Jeff Yates always says: "You won't change until the pain to change becomes greater than the pain to stay the same!" I truly believe that. So you need to ask yourself how much money do I need to lose before I change? Although not adhering to stops is a very serious problem, one of the nice things about having this type of issue is that it can be corrected in just one day. Similar to smoking, if you so choose, you can literally quit smoking today and never have another cigarette again in your life. I'm not saying this is easy, but it is possible. Same goes for adhering to stop losses. For example, learning chart patterns will take time, it's not something that you can force yourself to learn in one day. Whereas with adhering to stop losses, if you have the mental strength and desire, you can literally change overnight! It doesn't have to take months. Good luck out there, and remember this is a marathon not a sprint, and it all starts with a good, objective trading plan! The choice is simple: Take your stops or stop trading! Make sure to register for other programs that interest you the most at the following link: Pristine FREE Webinars I would be happy to see you join us and to answer any questions you may have. Jared Wesley Contributing Editor Interactive Trading Room Moderator Gap, Intra-Day and Swing Trading Specialist Instructor and Traders Coach
  21. 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.
  22. Discipline: "To know and not to do, is not to know" As I sit here contemplating the subject of discipline, I think back at the early stages of my trading career. I heard the word so often but never really understood how it fit in with trading the markets. First off, let's get to know what the word really means: The dictionary describes it like this: "Training to act in accordance with rules" When someone is winning or succeeding at something, discipline is easy to follow. When someone has experienced defeat, discipline is a wild animal that is looking for a victim to attack. Better said, when your losing, the rules go out the window. Now think about that in your trading career. Its 9:50 am EST and you have increased your account for the day by some $500. That's $1500 an hour! You sit on the sidelines not wanting to risk this precious gain only taking the most perfect textbook patterns. How easy is that? Your momentarily happy and go out of your way to kiss your spouse, pet the dog or cat, nothing can get you down. It's a great day! We'll, let's take a peek at a different scenario. It's 9:50 am EST and you just lost two trades in a row; you are down $500 in your trading account and you absolutely despise hearing someone that is having a great trading morning. Your spouse says good morning and you don't answer or say something to appease her/him so they won't talk to you for a while. The family pet comes over and all you can say is "beat it Rover" and your immediate thoughts are, I have got to get this money back. It's 10:00 am, you see a questionable trading pattern and if you tilt your head to the left and then turn your monitor at a 45 degree angle you can see signs of glory that has $500 written all over it. Your trading plan just went out the window and if you listen closely, you can hear the snarls of the un-caged animal lurking over head. Oh, by the way, his name is "Discipline". You take the trade and you earn your $500 back. What a great day just to be even. The cycle continues until the stock market zaps every last dollar from your trading account and you become another statistic. This just doesn't work you say, as you fade into the distance never to attempt trading again. You lay dormant as another victim that has been serious wounded by the faceless market. Does any of this sound familiar? I bet you can begin to relate to the reasoning behind this message. My friend, discipline is an animal that intends to throw you off course, ditch your plan and humble you. If you have a trading plan, (and you should) you need to honor that plan at all cost of temptation. I know you want to rid the grief of losing for that day so you do what most people do, they move to HOPE MODE and that just wont cut it. You need to find a way to make certain your plan will stay intact when days like this come, and they will! Design you trading plan with this in mind. Set parameters on how you will handle the rest of the trading day. For example: will you scalp only; reduce your risk; only be allowed to trade once more that day if you lose; there are a number of things you can insert into your plan to avoid this discipline killer. Once you experience how powerful it is to just follow your plan and not give way to "Hope Mode" the faster you will learn the skill of discipline. I would be happy to see you join us and to answer any questions you may have. Good trading! Jeff Yates Contributing Editor Interactive Trading Room Moderator Gap, Intra-Day and Swing Trading Specialist Instructor and Traders Coach
  23. Good Morning All: For the next three weeks, I will be looking at things that beginning traders should know as they start this business. Don't be surprised however, if some of you moderately experienced to very experienced traders don't find a few interesting tidbits; Even if they serve as nothing more that review. A Beginner's Handbook Part 1 of 3 Welcome to trading. Are you new to this field? Or is it called online stock buying? Or is it day trading? Or is it investing? Well let's get a few terms straight. This will be the first of a three part series, "A Beginners Handbook". First, at Pristine, we consider 'buy and hold' something that is no longer a term that should be applied to the stock market. Do this if you like in real estate, bonds, gold, but not stocks. It implies a long-term buy and hold with your eyes closed approach that should no longer be used in the stock market. The term 'investing' is fine as long as it does not mean 'buy and hold'. There is nothing wrong with long term holds. We believe in swing trades and core trades that could last for months or years in some cases. However, they are 'managed'. As traders, we do not close our eyes hoping all will be all right. Traders are educated in technical strategies and discipline. They become self-sufficient Most of today's large cap companies are in the technology area. These companies are subject to having their main product replaced by a new technology very easily. Long ago, it required many years for any company to start up a new car company and over take General Motors. Today, anyone can create software in their garage that can revolutionize how something is done and put a competitor out of business. Look at the company Iomega, for example. They are the makers of the infamous zip drives that appeared on computers years back. The current technology at the time was storing information on 1.44 meg disks. They came out with a system to store 100 megs on a disk, and got contracts to put their drive on every major computer. Sounds like a company you can buy and hold forever, doesn't it? It is, until someone discovers that the same information can go on a CD and have it cost much less. At that very moment in time, literally overnight, Iomega is out of business; unless it has other products to sell. The rule is 'change or become extinct'. This example is found over and over again in everything from video sales to computer chips. When practicing 'buy and hold' (as opposed to long term trading), you are relying on news and announcements and fundamental data. Many of you have probably already discovered how worthless this process is. To the extent it has a valid use; it is never to take the news or information at face value. Take a look at Amazon's recent earnings. You can look wherever you want, the comments were the same. "Results from Amazon (AMZN) ... also disappointed the Street". If you are relying on news to make decisions, it must be time to get short AMZN, right?. However, take a look at what happened after the dismal report was out. There was no other news. Those of you that already know this see this happens all the time. So if 'buy and hold' is out, what do we do? You hear stories all the time about all of the 'day traders'. You look around you and you don't see many. You may not even know any besides yourself and those you met at a seminar. Unfortunately, the term 'day trading' is often misused by the media. There is a large group of people that we call 'online investors'. These are the folks that use their computer in place of their telephone to call places like E-Trade, Schwab, etc. and place their orders. They are typically managing their savings or IRA money, and are typically untrained. They were plentiful during the bull run of the 90's, and often were wrongly called 'day traders'. They did not need to be trained because they made money buying stocks in the late 90s no matter what they did. Most of them are all gone now. We consider our selves 'traders', but this does not include the much larger group of 'online traders' mentioned above. Traders use technical analysis to find, enter, and manage trades. That applies to long or short term trades. Those that are focused on trading and exiting by the end of the day with that account are called day traders. We consider traders people who spend a good part of the day with the market. Those who are trained to manage positions that may last from several minutes to several months. While we believe that 'buy and hold' is a dead term, we do use many time frames to hold stocks, the longest of which is a 'core' position. While a core positions may last for months (or years), it differs from investing because there is an exact exit strategy planned for a core position. We also use a 'swing' time frame. This is one that may last from 2-5 days. We also use tactics that would have us holding a stock overnight one time, or exiting the same day. Sometimes exiting part of a position only minutes after entry. So if you are going to trade, how do you buy stocks? If you are trading only a few trades a week, and limiting yourself to swing and core trades, using on of the 'online brokers' is fine. The time it takes to have your order filled is not very fast, but for occasional long-term trades it is acceptable. If you are going to be trading more often, or trading in and out the same day, you will want to use a 'direct access' broker. This is a broker that lets you see all of the market participants, where they are buying and where they are selling. You then place your own order on your computer screen and many of these orders will have instant executions. By instant I mean instant, usually within a fraction of a second. If you need a broker, or not happy with your current broker, consider Mastertrader.com. It has the best rates and service, a variety of platforms, and you earn points to use at Pristine for services and seminars. So, you know what you want to do, and you have selected a broker. Now you need a computer and an Internet connection. Again, for occasional swing and core trading, any machine that can access the Internet will do. If you are going to be active intraday, you will need to have something better. You will need a computer that is competitive with the current top of the line computer, or is at least current with the technology within the last 12-24 months. You will want a fast Internet connection. You need to be looking at Cable, FIOS, Satellite, or T1-3. Depending on where you trade, you will have to evaluate which of these is available and most effective for your money. You will need to have a working knowledge of computers, as your time with the computer will be extensive whether you want it to be or not. So now you are ready to trade, right? Well, no not really. The biggest distinction I made earlier was that 'day traders' are educated in trading strategies and disciplines. This will be the focus of the next Lesson, how to start out trading when you have no education or experience in trading. I will discuss how to build that education as you go, without using up all of your capital. Closing Comments There is perhaps no greater occupation to have than that of a professional trader. Yet, few achieve that title. Few achieve, even thought thresh hold is not that high. In terms of cost and education, most anyone is capable. You have to set yourself apart, and be different. That is part of what we will talk about next week. Until next week, good trading. Paul Lange Vice President of Services Pristine Capital Holdings, Inc.
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