August Trading Journals

Discussion in 'Trading' started by Hitman, Aug 1, 2001.

  1. Hitman


    Without any question, July was a solid month in the right direction as my YTD P&L reached a new high for the first time since its previous peak back in early April. Hopefully this will be a smooth uptrend without further sell-off's. I started the month strong with 11 straight victories, but I slipped into mediocre performance rest of the way. Still, I was able to beat my earnings estimate of $5000 by $2200 despite of quite a few mistakes.

    July / June

    P&L Before Commissions: 12021 / 6217
    P&L After Commissions: 7190 / 3273
    Shooting %: 53.40% / 54.65%
    Cents Per Share: 0.075 / 0.050
    Volume: 159900 / 123200
    W/L: 17-3 / 15-6

    August is considered by many to be the most brutal month of the year, I must continue to capitalize on solid open's and take home those $300-$500 day's whenever possible, small but consistent profits adds up and with enough momentum they can chain into larger days. Playing defensively until September is the key. I am looking for another $5000 in August. Most of the days will be take open profit and run, but there will be a few day's in which bigger momentum opens the door for bigger profits, it is important to recognize those moves and capitalize on them, but it is absolutely critical to take profit aggressively . . .

    August blaze, it is the gateway between the brutal summer market and what most traders hope to be a much much better market to make money from. September to April will be the most important stretch of the year for me, as I need to make 100K in that stretch to secure home ownership after tax time. Playing a solid game in August will be the foundation of what I hope to be a huge run.
  2. Hitman


    Very light day and I am not going to churn. 3 of 6 shooting on 4300 shares, +380 before commissions, +196.85 after, 1 bullet. August opens with a small win and hopefully the market will pick up a little bit . . .

    Quite a few once profitable traders tapped out last month, and the firm cut position limit for quite a few groups . . . This is a brutal market environment, and the objective of every game is to survive with profit, no matter how small . . .

    Pre-Market: Massive upgrade on SOX which made a huge gap-up, ruined everything. Merrill cut ratings on Brokers which made me miss the financial rally. A handful downgrades on energies which created a lot of choppiness.

    9:30: Bulleted APD on CEX sell-off, got 30 cents out of the move unfortunately didn't do enough shares to get much more than the bullet cost. Took EOG long on a bad fill immediately sold and lost 10 cents instead of 50. Took ROH on CEX rebound for a 20 cents move.

    10:02: Took GE on futures pop, 15 cents off 1000 shares, tried MMM on CYC/DJI pop but it wouldn't go, lost 5 cents. By now I already missed the financial moves, not going to chase. There just weren't any opportunities to take any shots, so I stayed pat.

    2:00: Market sell-orders on energy, there are a lot of sellers in this sector and out of nowhere they pulled all the BID and hammered it down, too bad I didn't have a bullet and I was half asleep . . . Took MTP on a bottomfish and got out for flat. I think I am going to kiss this strategy goodbye, it is not worth the stress especially for me, who has a tendency to take serious hits every once in a while doing this.
  3. Hitman


    Got the direction wrong today, did not fade the gap-up and had a very poor open. Barely escaped with a win. 4 of 10 shooting on 10700 shares, 2 bullets (completely wasted, both energy), +478 before commissions, +94 after.

    Pre-Market: Nothing really caught my eyes.

    9:30: Took EMN on CEX strength and stopped out for flat. Took FMC and stopped out for 6 cents loss. Had DNA on BTK strength and escaped for a 10 cents profit. The problem about going short was that while the futures tanked, semiconductors and financials held steady until later into the hour, and I did not catch IUX shorts in time.

    9:45: OSX started to tank, put up bullet on HP and VTS, VTS was a total waste as the stock got hit hard yesterday and today it is just a lot of churning, HP I barely got the bullet cost out with small scalps. OSX rallied and the bullets became useless. Saw CAM going way ahead of itself so shorted it right below the psychological 50 support and luckily got a 50 cents profit as there was no BID there. That lucky play became my best winner of the day. As nothing else worked, and when OSX finally took off I was out of everything.

    3:00: Took some HP and RDC on OSX strength, while it seemed the index was running it was a very choppy way up. Prices moved up on light volume and I didn't like that. Churned and churned. Took GE on S&P futures pop but huge offers everywhere (even by GE's volume) as the stock would not give me that gift 20-30 cents pop as on two occassions I had 1000 shares. Tried TER on SOX pop and it didn't work. A super tiny win is better than a super tiny victory as I gave up when the closing bell went off . . .

    Bonus Coverage: Who is doing well in this market?

    I actually know a guy who hit his best month ever (21K despite missing more than a week's action) in July! He trades 25 stocks that trades between 100K - 1 million shares a day. He hand picked those stocks by painstakingly examinng their tape from the past to ensure that big BID/ASK and super size prints actually meant a lot in those stocks, and their specialists don't play games. He spends a hour and half every day examining those stocks to see where the support and resistance levels are, not only on the chart but actual tape to see buyers emerging and supporting prices. He starts with 1000 shares and goes up to 2000-3000 shares.

    He is extremely consistent, with 3 losing days across past 3 months (which is even superior to Mrs. D's consistency in this summer market). He plays these stocks by pure tape action, looks for big BID and ASK's, and he updates his watch list very frequently, throw out tough stocks and finds stocks that actually trends. Most of those stocks don't trade with futures nor sector indexes, and as his familarity with them grows, so does his profit. An example would be BJ, which doesn't follow the RLX index nor Futures. This way, his chance of being shaken out is minimal. Those small cap stocks work great with chart patterns, and support/resistance levels work a lot better in those stocks, especially with his careful research on "pressure points". Very delicate trading style, no news, pure technicals.

    Unfortunately he is moving to one of our competitor's (only because his best friend started a desk there and he will co-host). I known him for a long time and it took him a lot longer to go profitable than I did, and I had his numbers for quite some time, but it looks like he truly turned corners and found a style that works for him, and he is a much better trader than I am. I remember he used to be a basket trader who only focused on a few stocks, but they were too tough. Instead of looking for shortcuts, he went back to the drawing board, and looked through thousands of charts by hand until he finally found stocks he can make money in.

    I wish him all the luck in the world. But it is time for me to step it up. My watch list is quite diverse and I need to the size down. While going basket has huge edges when the momentum is strong, in a delicate market like this precision rules, and nothing beats sheer familiarity of the specialist.

    Of course, one of the top ten traders at my firm, who happens to be the epitome of shotgun style basket trading, is still doing very very well. He scored at least six figures every month from January to June and in July he missed first two weeks but still came out with more than $45K. The man trades dozens of positions at a time and he does a lot of research on both charts and news. While he has at least one down day a week, his down days are very small compared to his frequent 9K days. It is almost like putting together a portfolio for a day. He would take most of his positions (10-20 and beyond) off the open purely based on his research. His idea is the small losers will cancel out the small winners, but by cutting big losers short and pyramid into big winners, he will almost always come out ahead. He looks at chart without any indicators beyond the moving averages, and he look at tape only when pyramid into things. However, those who traded with him know his tape work is exceptional, the man has a photographic memory and can remember where that large BID is in every position, plain incredible. Research, planning, and excution, he averaged 150K shares each way every day even in this summer market. It is no wonder that he is up more than one million YTD, coupled with his own trading desk, a true star.

    It is indeed possible to make a lot of money even in this market, I just have to look for ways to win this game. What is interesting is both traders mentioned above trade stocks no one else trades, I have looked at the stocks they trade before and I can not even recognize most of them . . . There is gold in those small caps, and I need to start digging.
  4. janko


    Hye hitma, man i hope you can keep this up, the winning streak too, but thing i was reffering to is these journals, man i love it. see i work nights so every night i'm just hitting refresh on the browser waiting for your trading day how it turned out. Man keep it up, I love this stuff. Thnx.
  5. dozu888


    Hitman's journal is another proof that daytrading is a scam run by brokerage houses, they are the only people getting rich.
  6. trader58


    Dozu...if you think daytrading is a scam then why are you wasting your time posting on this website.
  7. Hitman


    Frustratingly difficult game as I was completely shut down on offense today. Some of the indexes I had weren't working until 10AM and it greatly effected my open game. I was indecisive this morning to put up technology bullets but I had a pair of bullets in HP and CPN. On both occassions there were a time when a large offer showed up and I had 1000 shares short with no BID, had there been a tiny little bit more push it would have sealed the deal for me. Unfortunately I simply could not make it happen today, barely kept my winning streak alive although it really is more of a flat game than anything else.

    +349 before commissions, +22.36 after, 2 of 5 shooting on 8000 shares, 2 bullets. The two bullets represented my lone winners. As everything else I took failed to do anything. In the afternoon it really felt like I was the only one trading, the futures went on a straight line and when it did broke to the upside, it was a tiny little move with zero volume.

    Rebuilt my watch list last nigh using a co-worker's TC2000, there are less than 150 stocks that has a 1.5+ point daily range on NYSE. August is incredibly tough, 3 games, +$300, one mistake and I can kiss this tiny lead goodbye, but it is better than being down, and that's the most important thing on my mind. My shooting percentage is 43% so far and I am not hitting any big shots. It really feels like pulling teeth sometimes, but I must keep my composure, there will be opportunities, no matter how tough it is, as long as I am up, even if it is $20, I can build a new streak, and eventually explode for big games at the right time. I expect things to pick up toward the end of August, but I have to get there in black, not red.

    Pre-Market: FLR upgraded (home builders), RIG downgrade (OSX)

    9:30: Horrendous shot in MUR, bought into a OSX squeeze and got hit 25 cents. Shorted HP and a very very bad early cover as I took just 30 cents out of a 70 cents move. While an extra 40 cents won't make me rich, with 1000 shares I would have been up $500 and I would have gladly rebated my bullets and went home.

    10:05: Already missed technology and financial sell-off's, took on UTY sell-off and bulleted 500 shares CPN at 30.92, very very untimely call from a friend as I was just about to sell the rest of that 1500 bullet which would have gave me a $500 day when a big offer showed up, missed the boat while I was on the phone and my fingers were slowed, covered 500 shares for a half point gain. Unfortunately rest of the day he teased me with a lot of large offers, as soon as I sell he would hit the offer with size and take it out, very very annoying. Later in the afternoon he did sell-off for real but I missed it.

    3:00: IUX move, took PGR and got hacked for 10 cents, there is no BID nor ASK on this thing, and I clearly rushed my shot. Churned HP and CPN bullet some more and finally gave up . . . Talk about a TOTAL shut down!


    I would usually post this far earlier, but for whatever the reason Worldco blocked this site from its proxy (no idea why) along with a few other trading related sites. I can not post this until I get home, and sometimes I get home late.


    In fairness, those were not pretty games. I was literally taking dime profits and losses and a 50 cents move seems huge in those days. When you churn you are going to build up that P&L before commissions but you won't make anything happen on that P&L after commissions. Nothing seems to go smoothly in those days and I have a really hard time getting quality shots after the first hour.

    I think I need to start getting some stock specific plays, namely, stocks that don't move with anything except its own tape/chart. They seem to be a lot more effective as both futures and sector indexes have been very choppy. It will require a lot more research but the idea is look for oddball stocks with good daily chart set-ups and watch the tape during the day. BID/ASK show up and it moves in direction you expect it to go great, otherwise try something else . . . Gotta experiment as the game is really rough . . .

    I don't see how you can say only brokerage firms are making money when they provide trading capital, equipment, software, and an office environment. They better get something for it!
  8. dozu888


    capital, equipment, software etc etc, those are part of the scam :)

    Anyway, you need large amount of dumb money behind you to make any dough daytrading (that's why this gig mushroomed during the internut days). The equity market is mature now, every participant is smarter and taking profit faster than the next one, stuff don't even move in the same direction for more than an hour. Even for a good trader like Hitman, mojority of the gross profit goes to the house.

    Just feels like there should be easier money somewhere else. Commodities? Currencies?
  9. trader58

    trader58 is truly a great sign that a frustrating day for you is still a positive one. August is all about survival. I was frustrated as well last week when AT went down at 9:35. It cost me my first losing day in 2 weeks as I got squeezed while the system was down. Shit happens in this game.
    Worldco blocks most "daytrading" sites with message boards on them, because the NASD monitors them. I think this is a good thing. Worldco is on the ball doing things by the book. sound frustrated. This is a BUSINESS and nothing is for free. Why would Worldco let me trade there money...because I am paying them commissions. They are not a charity...they are trying to make money just like me and you. They scratch my back..I scratch theirs, and we both make money. As for a trader's margins...that is a case by case basis. My old trading style paid more in commissions then I took home. But now I always make more money than I pay in commissions, because my gross cents per share is more than double my commission rate. Anyway I hope you realize that this is NOT a scam..and I hope you make a lot of money in this business.

    Hitman, You can use a 30 free trial on investertech to screen for 1.5 pt average range. It also screens by exchange.
  10. dozu888


    trader58, I treat trading as a hobby for 2nd income source, so really dont care about performance as pros do. I wish you all the luck in this biz.
    #10     Aug 4, 2001