Lack of volatility in ES getting brutal

Discussion in 'Index Futures' started by EsKiller, Feb 22, 2017.

  1. EsKiller


    Just want to vent my frustration in this market. Been trading the ES for 11 years and this is one of the least profitable times for my scalping strategy. I scalp the ES morning session, and its getting old seeing 1-3 tick range bars on the 1 minute chart 10-20 minutes into the open so often.

    Longer term hourly strategy is doing well, but scalping is most consistent and my bread and butter. Just wanted to vent. I know other ES traders are having similar complaints but this is a unique and frustrating time.
    Fehu, JefeTrader, wrbtrader and 3 others like this.
  2. lindq


    Blame ETFs. I'm thinking that the game may be undergoing a long-term adjustment.
    KDASFTG and murray t turtle like this.
  3. tommcginnis


    Back when I was a tick-scalper (like you, ending up in ES as a bread&butter deal), I used an ATR with two look-backs [or, more accurately, *two* ATRs....], and just learned to sit-on-hands when things got near 0.50 on a 1-minute chart. Actually learned to take Lunch that way. And afforded myself time to go investigate other things during the trading day. (Hence, index options......)

    I forget what time period that was, but like this one, it was an extended "topping market" period, and the wash (essentially, the 1-minute ATR) just *stunk*. So I did other things, and now when I try to scalp ticks, I just lose and lose. I had gone *weeks* without a losing trade! (A dangerous and dumb concept, but hey....) But now, I can't stomach anything but green-in-a-minute, or I dive out. Sheeesh!

    At any event, ...... hook yourself up some ATR action. Play around with it until you figure out where you're performance is consistent, put up some guiding written and graphical rules, AND DON'T VIOLATE them.

    (My thoughts: FWIW and all that jazz.)

    (And yes, I am still a scalper in my heart. Helps like mad when you're trying to assess a stodgy options market. Woot dat, yeah.)
  4. EsKiller


    The issue is the price movement in general. When you see a certain amount of 1-3 tick range bars occur in a group in ES, often times you can say the market has found balance. A traders job is to find imbalances and trade them. SO when price moves away from this 'balance' market can present an opportunity. But, when the market moves away from this balance with similar 1-3 tick range bars, the time element often cancels the opportunity or only presents you with 1-2 ticks of profit. I don't like taking trades where i know im only going to get 1-2 ticks as stop loss is often at the 2 point range.
    Steve Tvardek likes this.
  5. tommcginnis


    If you're work ethic demands you trade, but your eyeballs tell you that conditions stink, then you've got a conflict.

    An ATR on-screen can help resolve that conflict, as an empirical, historically-based, totally objective, non-brain-burdening tool.

    I HATE sitting on my hands. But with an ATR in play, I can only shrug my shoulders and say, "Well, thems the rules" and look for a better use of my time.

    Sure, it's frustrating -- time to make lemonade.
    i960, speedo and EsKiller like this.
  6. speedo


    There hasn't been much meat on the ES bone since last summer. I am trading other markets but hope range and volatility returns. I've traded the ES for years and like it but until it gets less stingy....
    wrbtrader and tommcginnis like this.
  7. Handle123


    I luv this type of market since I scalp, I don't trade Indexes when volatile. Am testing out new system and does well with tight markets. Learn to adapt, markets at times can become like this months and years.
  8. speedo


    A car dealer once said to me.."There's an ass for every seat."
    athlonmank8, gkishot and tommcginnis like this.
  9. tommcginnis


    [LOL] Ain't that the truth!

    You guys that "scalp" in trades that go multiple hours?!? Sheeeee-it! After an hour, I used to call myself "an investor." I just could not (*can*not) even *conceive* of trading like that. I'd blow lunch first, and then the account. No doubt. {Burp.}
  10. speedo


    LOL, I am not comfortable with breakneck speed but I like a market to at least have a pulse.
    #10     Feb 22, 2017
    tommcginnis likes this.