Saturday, November 04, 2006

weekends are for housekeeping

First off, I will say goodbye to NeoWorx. The bells and whistles were fun while the free ride lasted.
Next, I thought I would just mention for the record that I am now a paid subscriber to the HighChartPatterns newsletter. This newsletter focuses on, and caters to daytrading setups. Since for now, I try to avoid daytrading US stocks (if possible), it would be nice for them to mention some stocks which are swing candidates more often. However, I still find their service useful enough for me to become a subscriber. This is because often I find enough of their daytrading recommendations to also be good swing candidates as well. If I make a swing trade from one of their daytrading stock recommendations, I will remember to note it on the chart. I think I did it once or twice already.
I also haven't been maintaining my performance spreadsheet for most of the latter part of Oct (although I started again for Nov). I overtraded in the last half of Oct, so that meant a lot of time and effort to record the positions into my spreadsheet. Plus, I ran into a bit of a rough patch around the 3rd week of Oct (I think it was just before my Google options trade), which left me too discouraged to maintain the spreadsheet. What was weird was that 2 days after the Google options trade, things started to turn around for me. It's almost as if a switch came on inside of me to compel me to follow my rules:
1. keep losses small.
2. take smaller position sizes if you need to take wider stops
3. Honour my stop losses (stops in green is way better than to hope for green)
4. Only select charts with well-behaved, good quality, high probability, low risk setups.

I feel I have gotten ***better*** at following the above rules. This has made a significant difference in my approach to trading. Of course, I still need to work on the periodic bouts of overtrading, and getting better at following rule#4 should be able to address that.
I also need to find a simpler way to maintain the spreadsheet (TraderZBS's P/L table comes to mind) and will be exploring this in the coming week.
I've noticed that I've been more active in swing trading options recently. I've enjoyed the profits from the options trades that I made, although I'm very aware of the potential for huge losses as well. The key for me has been to keep posting up those picture windows, aka. charts so that I can study and review them later to identify what I did or did not do right.

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