Monthly Archives: March 2020

You Don’t Have To Trade EVERYTHING

 

This chart is from Thursday 19th March 2020. A couple of quick trades and then STOPPED. Done for the day.

<image: Two winners - and stopped. Why?>

Why stop?

Because today was a Hit & Run day!

Trading is a performance activity. And it's our job to manage ourselves in an attempt to get as close to peak performance as possible.

Good sleep routines, healthy eating, exercise. And some degree of separation of "life issues" from our trading day.

All good… and fairly easy… until a pandemic is unleashed across the world.

I expect most of us will be operating with heightened levels of anxiety and stress at the moment. I'll be the first to admit that this period of time has been harder on me than I expected. Having two daughters working as nurses provides an interesting mix of pride and anxiety right now.

The markets of course do not care at all how we're feeling. So it's up to us to manage ourselves. Limiting exposure at times when we're unlikely to be on our game. And pushing hard when we are feeling at our best.

Here's how I've chosen to manage my trading over the last few weeks.

Pre-session preparation includes an assessment of my current physical, mental and emotional state. And selection of one of three ways I need to approach the markets today.

1. NO TRADING

My physical state require strict adherence to my 5/12 fatigue management rules. If I have not had sufficient sleep, then there is NO trading.

And for my mental and emotional state, if there are any serious and unresolved problems or anxiety or any other type of distraction, impacting either myself or any member of my immediate family, then there is NO trading.

It's time to step back. Sort myself out. And come back again tomorrow.

The fact is that we don't have to trade EVERYTHING. Let today go.

I'm here for the long haul. I expect to be trading for decades to come. If I miss one day, who cares. It will not make or break my career.

2. FULL TRADING

The majority of days though, I'm completely fine. Sufficient sleep, feeling fit and healthy. And feeling in control of the current crisis (at least as it relates to my extended family).

It's time to trade.

Pre-COVID-19 routine: 0930 to 1100 compulsory trading, 1100 to 1200 optional trading.

Current routine: 0930 to 1100 compulsory trading, 1100 to 1600 optional trading but compulsory engagement with the markets, watching and learning.

It's time to trade.

FOCUS.

Press hard when in sync with the market. Step back a little when out of sync.

But make sure you're fully present and attacking whatever opportunity comes your way.

3. HIT & RUN

This is for those in-between situations. The shades of grey that fit somewhere in-between "obviously unfit to trade" and "hurry up and open the damn markets because I want to trade".

I've had a few of those days lately. I satisfy the fatigue rules. And I'm not overly consumed by current events of the world.

But I feel a little down. A little flat and deflated.

The plan here is for a shortened session. Hype myself up. Get in and attack the market. And then get out.

Hit and run.

And then take some time out for personal rest and recovery.

There are many ways to do this.

I've informally adopted the following plan:

(a) Trade the opening sequence.

(b) If I'm sitting on a loss then stop. Take the hit. Don't risk making it worse.

(c) If I'm sitting on greater than 2R profits then stop. Take the money and don't risk giving it back.

(d) But if somewhere in-between, I'll allow myself to make a call here based upon how I feel. Either take what I've got, or push on for one hour maximum to see if I can get to the 2R target.

Why one hour? Through personal experience I know I can hype myself up to focus sufficiently for about an hour. But beyond that, motivation starts to drop. Maybe you can do more?

The important point here… again… is that you don't have to trade everything.

If the market offers tremendous opportunity after that opening sequence, or opening hour, who cares.

It's not going to make or break my career. And given my low motivation I probably would have stuffed it up anyway.

So let it go. Take a break. And have a little "personal time".

Typically I find this is sufficient to have me back to 100% the following day. A short break from the markets can do wonders for reigniting the passion and having me eager to get back into the ring for another round of action.

Let's revisit the earlier chart…

<image: Two winners - and stopped. Why?>

<image: Two winners - and stopped. Why?>

The obvious thought here is "But Lance, you missed so much opportunity!"

<image: Two winners - and stopped. Why?>

Another "Hit & Run" day, on Tuesday 24th:

<image: You don't have to trade everything>

You might recall this opening trade from the social media post on Wednesday. If you were wondering how that trade turned out… now you know!

<image: You don't have to trade everything>

<image: You don't have to trade everything>

<image: You don't have to trade everything>

There are days when it is obvious that you shouldn't be trading. Stand aside. Let it go.

There are days when you're feeling great. Keen to get into the action and face the challenge of the markets head on. Go for it. Trade.

But there are also in-between days. When you're just… ok. A little flat. A little lacking in motivation. The last thing you probably need in such a situation is a full session of trading. So shorten it. Reduce the session length. Accept smaller profit targets. And get in there for a quick hit and run. Smash and grab. Two or three trades. Get a profit if you can. And get out of there.

You don't have to trade EVERYTHING. Let it go. And take some time out for YOU.

Take care of yourself. We're in this for the long haul.

Lance Beggs

 


 

When Obvious Expectations Are Wrong

 

There is market opportunity available when "obvious" expectations turn out to be WRONG.

You've no doubt experienced this. Those times when the market provides almost certain evidence that it IS going somewhere… but then it doesn't.

I can promise you – if you sense these "obvious" expectations then you're not the only one. Others will sense it too.

And the stronger the feeling, the better. Because more people will act on it.

And then when it fails… there's your opportunity.

<image: Opportunity exists at the times and places where obvious expectations are wrong.>

<image: Opportunity exists at the times and places where obvious expectations are wrong.>

<image: Opportunity exists at the times and places where obvious expectations are wrong.>

<image: Opportunity exists at the times and places where obvious expectations are wrong.>

<image: Opportunity exists at the times and places where obvious expectations are wrong.>

<image: Opportunity exists at the times and places where obvious expectations are wrong.>

<image: Opportunity exists at the times and places where obvious expectations are wrong.>

<image: Opportunity exists at the times and places where obvious expectations are wrong.>

<image: Opportunity exists at the times and places where obvious expectations are wrong.>

<image: Opportunity exists at the times and places where obvious expectations are wrong.>

Opportunity exists at the places where a lot of people get it WRONG.

So when you sense a sudden shift in the market sentiment… that surely must lead to obvious movement (through a key level or in a new direction), take a pause for a second.

Maybe it will follow through with these obvious expectations. Project ahead and plan how you will react.

But also – keep in the mind the fact that obvious expectations also fail.

And that can provide exceptional opportunity.

Project that forward as well. Visualise where and how that might provide opportunity. And focus. Hopefully you will be ready to act, a little quicker than I was with this one.

Happy trading,

Lance Beggs

 


 

Proving Your Edge in Re-entry!

 

Those who have followed YTC for a while will know that I'm a big fan of re-entry.

It's a personal preference. I much prefer a tight stop and the need for occasional re-entry, over a wider stop that might give a trade a whole lot of room to prove itself.

I typically allow two attempts at a trade. If the first is stopped out and the premise remains valid, I'll often seek a way back in. (NOTE: The premise MUST remain valid. We don't just try to re-enter every stopped out trade!)

I wasn't always comfortable doing this, in the early days.

And I know for a fact that many readers find it difficult as well.

From a mindset perspective, it asks that you put aside the fact that you just lost money on this very same trade idea, and place more money at risk.

And your thought process is probably fixated on the idea of "what if it loses again?"

<image: Proving your edge in re-entry>

<image: Proving your edge in re-entry>

<image: Proving your edge in re-entry>

<image: Proving your edge in re-entry>

<image: Proving your edge in re-entry>

<image: Proving your edge in re-entry>

<image: Proving your edge in re-entry>

<image: Proving your edge in re-entry>

<image: Proving your edge in re-entry>

<image: Proving your edge in re-entry>

Consider this – I could lose on my next four to five re-entry trades and I'd still be in front.

Edge doesn't require that you win on every trade.

There will be winners and losers. Both are fine. As long as your stats prove edge over a larger series of trades.

So if you struggle with re-entry, with thoughts of "what if it loses again" leading far too often to hesitation and doubt, maybe consider the following plan.

For the next twenty re-entry trades, let's try to prove once and for all whether they do provide you with edge.

Like this:

(1) Create a new copy of your Trading Journal Spreadsheet with one setup – "RE-ENTRY". The aim is to initially keep the stats separate from other setups and from other trading.

(2) Do NOT take re-entry trades live. There should no longer be any thoughts of "what if it loses again" because… who cares if it loses… you're not really in the trade.

(3) Take the trade either on sim (if your platform allows switching execution between live and sim) or else just on paper.

(4) Track the results in your separate Trading Journal Spreadsheet.

(5) And prove, over that sample of twenty trades, that you do have edge.

Or prove that you don't. At least then you know for sure. And you can either abandon the idea or use the data you just gathered to find a way to improve and build edge where there currently is none.

Nothing improves trade decision making and confidence like actually SEEING proven edge over a series of trades.

And if you want to continue to monitor this going forward, as you start taking them live, maybe you could continue to track re-entry trades separate from other setups. Make "RE-ENTRY" its own setup. This allows you to continue to monitor the edge over further samples of data. And hopefully, if the edge is proven, continue to build confidence in this highly valuable trading skill.

If you lack confidence in your re-entry edge, the best way forward is to test that edge. Commit to a full series of re-entry trades on sim, alongside your normal trading. Record results. And review.

Twenty re-entries minimum.

Go for it.

Lance Beggs

 


 

Market Open Traps

 

Market Open Traps are by far my favourite opening play right now.

I've demonstrated these quite a bit over the last year or two. Sorry for the repetition – but they're just working so well lately.

Not always for massive profits. The two shown today are definitely singles, rather than home runs.

But they're reliable. And while they keep working, I'll keep watching every open to see if I can catch one.

Here's the general concept.

<image: Market Open Traps>

<image: Market Open Traps>

<image: Market Open Traps>

The opposite applies as well. Price approaching a level of significant overnight resistance, breaking it just prior to or immediately after the open, and then smashing lower and trapping any LONGS in a losing position.

My plan of action upon seeing this set up is to prepare for either BOF or first PB trade opportunity, as taught here.

Let's start with Monday 24th February 2020…

<image: Market Open Traps>

<image: Market Open Traps>

<image: Market Open Traps>

<image: Market Open Traps>

<image: Market Open Traps>

And again the very next day…

<image: Market Open Traps>

<image: Market Open Traps>

<image: Market Open Traps>

<image: Market Open Traps>

<image: Market Open Traps>

Simple PB setup opportunity… but within the unique context of a trap setting up just before or immediately after the market open.

They're not always home run trades, as we've seen. But they're reliable. And right now, they're certainly my favourite opening play.

Review your charts and see whether you can apply this concept in your own markets and your own timeframes.

And if so, be ready, watching and waiting prior to the open.

Market open traps are a great way to get a quick and early entry into the market's opening trend.

Happy trading,

Lance Beggs