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

Thursday, April 26, 2007

The Runner

Net: +$682.14
Trades: 67
Shares Traded: 34000

Stocks Traded Today (net profit/loss):
CF Industries Holdings, Inc. (CF): +$209.08
Wendy's International (WEN): +$141.19
Capital One Financial Corp. (COF): +$97.22
Exelon Corporation (EXC): +$88.46
Pulte Homes, Inc. (PHM): +$70.11
Sunoco, Inc. (SUN): +$66.29
Goodrich Corporation (GR): +$62.02
Corrections Corp. of America (CXW): +$49.89
Aetna Inc. (AET): +$36.11
The Mosaic Company (MOS): +$31.14
SYSCO Corporation (SYY): +$29.13
ArvinMeritor, Inc. (ARM): +$27.31
NCR Corporation (NCR): +$7.71
Weyerhaeuser Company (WY): -$4.44
Emerson Electric Co. (EMR): -$25.32
Valero Energy Corporation (VLO): -$39.10
Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. (TMO): -$40.16
Centex Corporation (CTX): -$56.83
Avnet, Inc. (AVT): -$68.19

Runner - a trade that moves 30, 40 or 50+ cents in the direction of the trade within a few seconds either immediately upon entering a trade or shortly afterwards.

For the last couple of trading days, I've had the pleasure of being in a couple of runners. Once I get into a position, sometimes it turns into a runner fairly quickly (usually the case when a major or round level breaks), or sometimes I've got to wait around for a bit until it turns into one (usually at the semi-major levels like at .25, .50 and .75 levels).

You know you've got a runner on your hands when suddenly the Level 2 gets really busy and the prices and prints start to hop, skip, and jump by several cents at a time. Then the ECN's start popping up all over the place and many times the Level 2 is momentarily crossed and any big sizes on the Level 2 that blocks your way just melts away.

When I've got a runner on my hands, I often quickly snap to attention and prepare - you never know if the move will reverse and I'm often assessing where I should unload a part of my position.

So far, I think I've had a runner on my hands more times this week than I've ever had during my entire trading career....I guess you just don't encounter those kinds of moves by trading the slow behemoths like GE, EMC and TWX. I've got to say that these new scans I'm using are really helping to identify movers like those.

Unfortunately today I didn't bag a runner.

I think it was mainly because the S&P Futures kept trying to make strong moves to the downside in the morning and every time I got into a position that could have been a runner, the Futures would help pull the stock back and I'd either have to take partial profits or I'd have to get out for a small loser.

During the middle of the day, I just didn't see any very good opportunities and I was often just in and out quickly.

Then at around 2PM, the markets started moving to the upside, however most of the positions I was in just didn't want to seem to move to the upside (or at least it didn't want to move up very much).

All in all, I think I traded a little too much today.

And I also traded a whole bunch of stocks today....I just found that whenever I was in a position, the Futures would make a sudden move against my position and I'd dump half my position...but then the stock would start reversing and I'd end up taking only a small profit on it.

And it was yet another day in which my "bigger" 1000-share positions were mostly for losers. It's a good thing I kept a very close stop on half my position....when the position went against me for about 3 or 5 cents, I'd usually dump half my position....and I'd have another stop further down to get me out completely.

Had I not done this, there would have been a couple of rather severe losers today.

There were no good trades nor any bad ones today.

Let's see if I can bag a couple of runners tomorrow (and let's hope they can be on 1000 shares!).

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

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



  • scalper, how do you check the futures while trading? Not day trading very much, it is something I've never experimented with. Thanks!

    By Blogger Woodshedder, at April 26, 2007 4:50 p.m.  

  • marvelous

    By Anonymous ๑۞ღ, at April 26, 2007 5:25 p.m.  

  • Do you mind tell me how do you choose those stocks you trade everyday? Thanks a lot!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at April 26, 2007 5:44 p.m.  

  • Do you have a stop-loss level imposed by the company and is it different from yours (i.e. do you exit sooner than what they recommend or impose)?

    Keep up the good work!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at April 26, 2007 6:04 p.m.  

  • Woodshedder,
    Thanks for your comments. At the prop shop, we have access to the eMini S&P Futures quotes and I usually have a time and sales ticker for the on my screen. I also have a chart of the Futures as well. Hope it helps!

    Thanks for your comments. I'm currently using Trade-Ideas to get some trading ideas and I've been making use of their alerts. Check my posts earlier this week for the links. Hope it helps!

    Thanks for your comments. There is a maximum amount I can lose during the day and is kept track of by an automated system. Once I hit it, it'll shut me down and I will not be able to trade for the day. This stop-loss level is directly related to how well you've been doing the last two weeks...if you've been doing poorly, you'll be shut out at $250 (i.e. the system will shut you out if you lose $250)...if you've been doing well, your stop-loss level increases (currently mine is at $600, but I've had it as high as $1400).

    As for stop-losses on individual trades, it's all basically up to me...but with the way I trade, I'm usually out if I encounter a loser and will usually give my trades only about 10-cents before I stop myself out (my thinking is that I have no idea how much further this will go against me, so I might as well get out now and I can always get back in later).

    Hope it helps!

    By Blogger J.C., at April 26, 2007 6:13 p.m.  

  • Nice day. JC do you keep you net profit? How does the prop shop make money?


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at April 26, 2007 6:32 p.m.  

  • SwiftTrade is useless for the style you are doing, you don't need low exec fees to make money. Look into getting account with Genesis or one of their LLC. You will have to put up risk capital 5000 but then get 10x leverage 50k is plenty fot this style. Pay 2$ per thousand for executions and clearing about 1.90 more than swift but if you are only trading 500 shares thats only 90 cents more. Oh yeah I forgot the best part you get 100%. If intrested let me know.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at April 27, 2007 4:03 a.m.  

  • Interactive Brokers is your other option but you will need 25k to daytrade and they use java as a platform. Genesis uses laser which is rock solid. Last thing you want is Prospro to die when you are up 70cents only to find out that when it goes back up you are down 70 cents.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at April 27, 2007 4:05 a.m.  

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