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

Friday, May 04, 2007

OK - Something's Not Quite Right Here....

Net: -$504.95
Trades: 40
Shares Traded: 15400

Stocks Traded Today (net profit/loss):
RTI International Metals (RTI): +$21.15
UGI Corporation (UGI): -$15.51
Brush Engineered Material (BW): -$15.80
Schering-Plough Corporation (SGP): -$16.39
Transocean Inc. (RIG): -$29.55
Callaway Golf Company (ELY): -$30.31
Quanta Services, Inc. (PWR): -$30.77
Weyerhaeuser Company (WY): -$40.63
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc (HOT): -$77.16
Embarq Corporation (EQ): -$81.09
Arcelor Mittal (MT): -$188.89

Boy it's great to start the day off with 10 consecutive losers. 10!

Out of all the trades I took today, only one somehow was a winner...and that was only because it was starting to fall back down and luckily I got out when I did because it would have eventually become a loser too.

After that winning trade, I was going back to losers again and by 1PM I was just fed up with how unbelievably bad I was trading, so I quit for the day.

Ok - so what's going on?

Last week was fantastic - though I was very conservative I was quite surprised at the outcome.

This week has been absolutely lousy....

This is my second full week of using Trade-Ideas and while last week's results were nice and consistent, this week has been lousy at best.


I look at it this way.

Last week when I started using Trade-Ideas, I was somewhat skeptical as to what it could provide for me. As a result, I used very small share size and I was very picky about the trades I put on that I was alerted to.

I would only get into a trade if everything looked perfect and since I was somewhat skeptical, I kept my losers very small....if the trade didn't go my way right away, I was out. If the trade started running for me, then great - I'd take some off the table and see where the stock would take me.

That kind of thinking produced great results considering the number of trades I put on and the position sizes.

Well here we are this week and some not-so-great result.

I have a feeling it's because I'm starting to expect too much from my trades. Last week I saw how some of my trades really started to run in my favor as it would hop, skip, and jump 20, 30, and 50 cents at a time.

But this week I think I was expecting that to happen on every trade. This led me to hold onto losers a little longer than I normally would and I kept widening my stops, hoping the trade would eventually run in my favor.

And I kept trading as if the trades I put on would run and I wouldn't book profits because I wasn't satisfied with "only" a 10 or 15-cent profit. I'd eventually see these positions turn negative.

I also noticed that I was basically trying to trade every single alert that came through my scanner.....not a wise move and probably not the way the provider intended for it to be used.

Whatever it is, it's not working and I've really got to wake up and realize what I'm doing.

I've got to smarten up with my trading...

Good Trades
(trades in which I make $250 or more)
  • None

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



  • Sorry to hear about your day. I had the same issue with holding onto a loser too long. After spinning down all day (from 13.60 level to 13.19), AUY jumped up to 13.38. I was convinced it would pop back up and it was "safe" to enter mid-rally. Well, as soon as I bought it it immediately sank all the way down to 13.19 again. I continued to hold. It eventually popped back up to 13.30 -- I managed to get out at 13.28 for a $650 loss. Frack!!!!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at May 04, 2007 5:48 p.m.  

  • never forget that past prop trading model has died. so...whenever you tried to hit big size stake you will get trouble...

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at May 04, 2007 5:55 p.m.  

  • hey i trade thick nyse stocks mostly and i see that there is lots of info in there level 2, so i use technicals and confirm with the level 2 price levels and prints, helps a lot :))
    In thin stocks the level 2 info is useless and lots of hidden orders, so less info to base trades on. I work in different office.
    Every thing should be objectively seen, thick shares does not mean no money there. they can be additional money and thin ones as fillers between slow moving thick ones is best. With thick ones when they start moving momentum is very good, one can make much safer good money. u know momentum is m/s. :) hope it helps. thanks for trade ideas not bad at all :)

    By Anonymous yopti, at May 04, 2007 8:41 p.m.  

  • level 2 becomes much less important when programmed trading got more popular.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at May 05, 2007 1:53 a.m.  

  • It sounds to me like you were just taking a lot of shots today... I did the same thing and lost $500 myself. When I make money, it's because I'm choosing good setups, relaxed, non-emotional, disciplined, and focused... I only want to take 90% setups because I don't want to give back money and have no problems leaving money on the table. When I take shots... the day is hell... if I'm up money, I'll take shots and give it back, if I'm down money, I'll take shots and get it worse... it's easy to misuse trade idaes and take lots of shots... but that will kill you, just like it kills me. It's clear to me from reading your blog that that's your main problem; shot taking. Any time you talk about mediocre setups, trades based on self-pressure to increase P/L, churns... you're talking about shot taking. Maybe you're limiting your risk and letting the winners run a bit, but a shot is still a shot.

    By Blogger Will, at May 05, 2007 2:04 a.m.  

  • well level is still its still valid for confirmation of technical entry or exit, it does show price action in visual way and if it matches the charts, thats the way to go, every new way creates pattern

    By Anonymous yopti, at May 05, 2007 8:00 a.m.  

  • I was coached by a hedge fund manager a few times. It drove me crazy because he would sometimes not trade once all day becuase there was no setup. He looked for reasons not to trade more than to do so. I would just like to quote him and hope it helps.
    "If You Missed It, You Missed It;But You Did Not Lose"

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at May 06, 2007 12:02 p.m.  

  • Thanks for all the comments. Sorry for the late response....I didn't realize there were soo many helpful comments left on this post. I'd like to thank everyone for their support and for their advice! I really appreciate it!

    By Blogger J.C., at May 09, 2007 6:14 p.m.  

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