An NYSE Scalper's Tale - A Trader's Diary

Monday, April 02, 2007

Changing It Up

Gross: +$252.00
Net: +$234.01
Trades: 61

Stocks Traded Today (net profit/loss):
KB Home (KBH): +$134.21
Walter Industries Inc (WLT): +$101.35
Countrywide Financial Corporation (CFC): +$65.79
GameStop Corp. (GME): +$13.43
Jabil Circuit Inc. (JBL): +$5.31
Tribune Company (TRB): +$1.48
First Data Corporation (FDC): -$0.72
ConocoPhillips (COP): -$1.33
Georgia Gulf Corporation (GGC): -$22.02
Nordstrom Inc. (JWN): -$30.71
Chico's FAS Inc. (CHS): -$32.76

Today I just really focused on changing things up and traded stocks that actually moved.

In the past, I sort of had a semi-idea of what I wanted to trade and a bunch of "backup" stocks I would fall back on if I couldn't find opportunities.

In the month of March, this was met with limited success (yes, yes, I know, I haven't done my monthly review...I'm still trying to find the time to complete my number crunching).

So what I did yesterday was to really focus and to really have a good idea of what I wanted to do today....which stocks I wanted to go long on when the opportunities showed themselves, which stocks I wanted to short when opportunities presented themselves and to keep an eye on those stocks that were moving because of news.

I was also rather careful in deciding which stocks I was going to trade today.

Notice anything different about the stocks I traded today?

Well, there are no "lame" stocks in the list! No GE, no MOT, no TWX, no EMC....just stocks that actually move!

But today I just felt like I needed to ease my way back into this thing, which is why I kept my position sizes really really small....I'm talking like 200, 300, and 500 shares (just depending on my comfort level).

Over the weekend I was hunting for stocks to trade. I used to just stick with whatever was in the news (gapping up/down) plus my usual "lame" pack of stocks.

So where was I to begin? Where am I going to find these stocks? I needed to find stocks that moved and I was trying to find stocks that had a relatively large Average True Range (ATR).

Well - what better place to find it than over there at Move The Markets. If you didn't know, Richard runs a weekly scan called "Top Stocks To Daytrade" which looks for stocks that have certain characteristics and looks for stocks that have good intraday ranges.

I got my list from Move The Markets and I looked at the charts of each, then decided which stocks I would consider only going long and which ones would should stick to shorting. Anyways, you should go and check it out!

Since I kept my position sizes small, I was more willing to wait to see where my position would take me....and I didn't mind holding onto a temporary loser just as long as the charts were showing that my position was the right one.

I'll need to string a couple more positive days to really start getting my groove back, so we'll see what the rest of the week brings.

Finally folks, I'd like to apologize for not providing timely posts and missing some here and there. Lately I've been feeling that my mind wasn't really in the spirit of things and I just felt like I needed to escape all the feelings and emotions that this game sometimes brings with it. I hope you all stick with me here as I try to get my bearings straight again and hopefully it'll be business as usual soon!

Good Trades
(trades in which I make $200 or more)
  • None

Bad Trades
(trades in which I lose $150 or more)
  • None

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3 Comments:

  • take it easy JC! there is no doubt in my mind that you will be a great trader

    KL

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at April 02, 2007 9:10 PM  

  • JC,

    Glad to see you had a good day. Lots of small gains lead to big confidence. Everyone has different styles, but I think the approach of starting your trades with smaller position size may help you.

    Also, one great place to scan for stocks that are moving is at www.bigcharts.com. Check under the "big reports" tab for the stocks that had the greatest volume increases. Often, these are stocks that are getting good interest and moving.

    Hope this helps. Oh, and be careful this week. Vacation weeks can be dicey.

    -DT

    By Blogger Dinosaur Trader, at April 02, 2007 9:27 PM  

  • Hi JC,

    I have RASH access with my trading platform. RASH is great but the order size is limited to 25,000 shares or lower on my platform. Do you have this size restriction on your system? You can test it out by placing an order on this dummy symbol: zvzzt. Thanks!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at April 03, 2007 12:22 PM  

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