Last Monday was the US Labor Day public holiday.
So I was surprised to see an email on Tuesday from a trader who was caught unaware by the low volume.
Here's an excerpt from the email:
- "Today was some USA holidays (I did not even know it) and most of the markets were completely dead and made small range during whole day."
You absolutely MUST be aware of the holiday schedule, as it relates to your market.
Any decent economic calendar should show them.
I use this one (due to my trading journey coming through the forex markets a few years back) – http://www.forexfactory.com/calendar.php. It's not the only one. Search around for some alternates and find the one that best suits your market and your circumstances.
Some people like to trade every day. That's cool. We all get to make our own decisions; and alongside that have to accept responsibility for the outcome. If you're net profitable on holiday sessions… good on you. I just don't think the risk is worth the effort.
There are days when you should NOT trade.
For me, these days are:
- All US holidays
- Any other holiday relevant to the instrument being traded (eg. UK holidays for GBP/USD)
And there are days when you should trade cautiously (and even consider not trading). For me these are:
- A couple of hours prior to any significant news release (such as NFP or FOMC… or market specific releases such as the Crude Oil Inventories report for CL)
- The day before holidays or long-weekends (or at least just the afternoon of these sessions)
- Rollover day (for futures)
There may be others applicable to your markets. Options expiry days are one that some people avoid.
Take some time out this weekend to update your trading plan to (a) check the economic calendar on the weekend (for the upcoming week) and again pre-session (for the upcoming session), and (b) document which days you will avoid, and which you will trade cautiously.
Happy trading (or not… on certain lower probability days),
Hello Mr Beggs,
Cool article, I was aware that trading through holidays should be avoided but I must admit that I was unaware to be more cautious or avoid trading all together the day before the holiday/long weekend or a couple of hours before major news releases. What is it about the market environment during these two mentioned times that would have you more cautious or avoid trading?
Marcus, these time periods are typically (but not always) subject to reduced participation, meaning less volume and liquidity. My expectation is usually for a narrow rangebound market with limited opportunity. Often this turns out right. Other times it’s wrong and I miss a great trending move. So be it. The risk is not worth it in my opinion. Best to take some time off and enjoy life.
All personal opinion of course! 🙂
Thank you sir, I appreciate the feedback. At the moment I’m not really keeping myself abreast of upcoming news event because I’m only trading paper but perhaps that should change. It would probably also help end my weeks in profit more consistently.
Hello Mr Beggs!
Immediately apologize for my bad English, I write through the translator))
I am a trader from Russia, your materials are very popular in our country.Try to translate each of your articles and absorb the information, it really helped me.
I want to thank you for what you are doing and I am pleased to know that there are trader who are really worthy of respect. We have many traders who don’t really earn, and call themselves gurus of the market, take the money for the training starting from 200$-5000$ and stuff, so I was at the time, and I continue to learn from Western traders. Thank You again for Your efforts. God bless You and Your family! With Respect from Russia))))
Thank you so much for your very kind words. I greatly appreciate your feedback. And I’m pleased my writing has helped in some way along your trading journey. 🙂
Thanks again. And I wish you all the best of luck,