Today was another busy day. I traded from 7.30am to 11am. Then had a rest before spending 3 hours trading the ES and TY futures contracts and discussing my trading approach for these instruments with the programmer who built the platform for it. I wonder whether I will be as exhausted tonight as I was yesterday.
Anyways here are the three charts for the three trades I took. The net result was a loss of less than 0.1R. The EURUSD trade was about as good at it gets really. The AUDUSD trade was next and went well into my favor, close to a 1R gain, at which point I shorted Cable essentially betting two trades on dollar strength. The dollar index fell at this point causing the trades to be a scratch and a loser respectively.
An essential difference between the Cable trade and the two others was that on Cable I didn’t wait for a retracement before entering. As I was waiting for retracements on both other trades, I hardly encountered any heat, and really shifted the odds into my favor.
I had waited for getting into a long DAX trade below the 12,100 level but that didn’t work out. I also missed the subsequent decline in the DAX following the poor Euro data at 10am.
EURUSD trade – near perfect?
1. Who was in control? The proficient trader was in control of the first two trades – sound technical analysis, patiently waiting for a retracement to allow entry at a good level. In hindsight, the key point on the 3rd trade is that I was entered a questionable level – good if a breakout occurs but bad if price goes sideways or even retraces (like it did!). Was I too quick to get into this trade? Is my thinking tainted by the fact that it was a losing trade? If it had been a winning trade, would I have patted myself on the back for being able to anticipate a bearish breakout?
Position management was very passive for all of the the trades. I broadly stuck to the original targets, although I had not set a concrete T1 for the Aussie trade, and was a little scared with the EURUSD when I closed 1/2 manually just ahead of the target. Not overly bad – that’s ok.
Thus overall still a bit of the destructive trader at play, but mostly the proficient one.
2. All in all, traded fairly well. Points to note is that i shut down the charts whilst I was trading the futures, I took a break before the futures trading (when I was exhausted), and on checking the markets around 3.15pm and there was not much clarity, I refrained from trading. Sitting on my hands = Good!
3. Proficient Trader could ahve had even more influence if I had spent a bit more time reviewing the charts as soon as possible. There is only limited time – so it’s a matter of priortising – checking the key levels on the 1H, inserting the pivot lines on the fx pairs, noting the 1H trend – taking into account fundamentals and latest news. All this will assist making trading decisions under pressure. Also it’s a matter of being ready – realistically should I have been able to get long on the DAX this morning?
4. Good trading – Sitting on my hands, noting pivots, key levels, trends, EMA’s, news schedule, position sizing, stop loss management.
Bad trading – Minimal. Less a case of mistakes, rather a case of other good things I could have done – prep work.
5. There could have been a lot of bad trading if I had started trading after 3pm trying to make extra returns. That’s the potential mistake that I didn’t make today. Not trading then also allowed me to leave the office just after 4pm again.
Note to Self: Good work George – you are making progress on becoming a good trader – risk management is sorted, your technical skills are improving, you are self-aware as to what mental and physical state you are in, you are getting in at sound levels. Carry on like this and you will become a consistently profitable trader.