31/3 – Session Wrap-up – scratch day

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?

203 EURUSD Mar31

AUDUSD

204 AUDUSD Mar31

Cable

205 GBPUSD Mar31

Psychology Review

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.

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