10 Days With TopStepTrader

Discussion in 'Journals' started by austinp, Jul 8, 2013.

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  1. [​IMG]

    Monday, July 8th...

    Yet another gap-up open on a Monday morning for the start of trading. We've seen that literally dozens of times in the past couple years, with a majority of them remaining unfilled while price action chops sideways all session.

    But you never know when or where price action will make that one move for a day, or several moves all day long. So we trade the sequences, scratch out for nil losses in the chop and work the setups that actually follow-thru in direction.

    I got a midday start due to myriad technical issues around me, some hardware failures that always seem to happen on a Monday morning. Wouldn't have made much difference when I began today, because the ES held inside a 10pt sideways range with no oscillations at all.
  2. Maverick74


    Austin, weren't you doing this combine several months ago? You never really gave an update on that.
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    I chose to work with ES only in this combine for a few reasons. A lot of people opt to trade CL or other high-beta symbols that work for big profits when they work. But for myself, I simply have no desire to trade 20 or 40 or 50+ CL contract block positions in the future. That market is way too thin, spiky and spastic for managing risk on size. Or at least that much is true for me at this point in my evolution as a trader.

    There is no point for me to try and "win" a combine unless the exact-same parameters permit trading bigger size in a real-money account. So my own personal choice is the ES alone for this project. If it works out that my efforts result in a funded account with unlimited growth potential, I don't want any self-imposed limits to methodical growth :)

    Anyways, today's ES trading efforts resulted in a 4-contract lot scaled position stopped for +1 tick, and then two other 2-contract lot positions stopped for a combined -262.50 before calculated costs. I believe the net-loss total including costs on eight contracts turned is -302.50
  4. yes, I did a couple of them using CL in part or whole. That was right around the time CL went thru the liquidity transition from what it used to be into what it has been since last fall. At the same time from then to the first part of this year I've juggled focus on CL (my personal preference) and TF (second choice) and ES (acceptable choice)
  5. there was a time that when asked which market or symbol is "best" for trading, I'd offer a firm opinion depending on what seemed best at the time. The term "best" meaning liquidity and volatility and methodical movement.

    awhile ago, I realized there is no single "best" market or symbol for anybody. We each have to determine what factors are most important to each of us, and trade that.
  6. at this stage of my career, I'm not interested in a primary symbol that requires me to chase for fills, try to catch spike moves that blow thru action zones, deal with partial fills on performing trades while absorbing slippage on stopped out trades.

    if the TST program offered Russell 2000 (TF) as a choice I'd probably add that in, but I don't see it on the available list of symbols which is not a really big deal anyways. I'm content to work with ES intraday, use scaled-in orders to help mitigate risk and focus on targeted directional moves from technical action zones to profit objectives.
  7. Which combine are you trading? $30K or greater?
  8. So basically, I'm simply working 2-lot to 5-lot orders as price action (and equity balance) dictates for small to modest-sized targeted gains. The overall concept is to catch directional swings thru defined trend zones for +4 to +8 index points, maybe bigger in an abrupt spike or surge move but focus on booking AND KEEPING somewhere between $500 to $1000 daily as offered.

    A big part of my strategy here with tight risk parameters is to quit trading while sufficiently ahead. I really don't care how much gets left on the proverbial "table" in a session... for this program effort here, I am looking for acceptable profits and when captured, done for that day. Regardless what time it says on the clock or how many hours in the session remain.
  9. Maverick74


    Austin, this is what you said last October:

    I'm just curious what has changed since then. And why are you trading arguably the hardest contract in the world due to it's slop and general lack of volatility.
  10. $50k which technically is "easier" than the $100k to meet specific qualification of minimum profit gains. $3500 on the 50k would be $7000 on the $100k to be equal in degree of effort for that particular qualification.

    The limitation of $50k is a relatively small risk limits. I have a mentality of trading greater numbers than that, so I therefore have to manage myself when it comes to prudent leverage use. Traders of all experience levels and years in this business need constant self-management of decisions. We are all one bad day of going on tilt away from serious fiscal damage. No one is totally immune... which is why trading like any other self-performance pursuit demands constant, daily self-management without relent :)
    #10     Jul 8, 2013
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