Leaving profit on the table.................

Discussion in 'Trading' started by Awash, Jul 30, 2003.

  1. Awash


    I’m having this reoccurring problem were I leave profit on the table because I fail to close my position on a reversal. For instance, today I entered the market short at 989.25 off a mediocre sell signal at 9:42 EST (click chart below). I set a 2 point Buy STOP & I reset my Buy STOP if price moves over 1.50 points in my favor to 1 tick below where I went short. In this case I reset my stop to 989.00 (I do this just in case the ES abruptly changes directions to save a potential loss). I generally try and reach for a 3 point profit target. Now, in this situation the ES moved as low as 987 within 3 minutes. I was in-the-money 2 points but the infamous ES reversed abruptly and I got stopped out at my reset order of 989.00. My questions are, am I too over zealous to reach for a 3 point profit target early on? Or, am I too impatience to wait at least 10-15 minutes to see where price will go? Or, should I had of closed the position upon reversal for a one point gain?

    Situations like this happen to me often (three times a week) and I get more frustrated in this case than if I actually lose money. My trading methodology is a TREND FOLLOWER but lately I’ve had to step outside of my system because the market has been side ways for the past few sessions. Have any of you experienced this problem? If so, what’s your resolution? Remember the questions in the above paragraph also. Thanks in advance!!!!!!!

    Click to see chart: http://home.houston.rr.com/aarondwashington/
  2. bobcathy1

    bobcathy1 Guest

    Try using a longer time frame like 3-5 minutes......against a 15-30 min chart. I used to get killed using a one minute chart. I also switched to NQ and YM...less whipsaws IMHO :)

    The last few days were not good for trend following, but they did chop in a channel which is tradeable. And in channel chop, you take what you can get sometimes only 1/2 a point. Trying to get a set amount is a recipe for disaster.:)
  3. 3 times a week? Are you not trying to be perfect? That's not a good habit. Things like that happen, you cannot predict everything. Learn to live with them, you will not always get everything right, that's impossible.
  4. opm8


    Like electron said if it's only happening 3 times a week, let it go and don't worry about it. Of course, this only holds true if you make a lot more than 3 trades a week.

    A simple method of capturing profit is to scale out of your position. You can do this if you trade in multiples of 3 contracts. You enter, then when you're in the money at a predetermined point (say 1 pt or a fib number, whatever you use) you close out 1/3 of your position. There, you've just bagged some profit. You can also tighten your stop at this point, too.

    I prefer to have two exit targets in every trade, at each I scale out by a third and tighten my stop. The last third is the "let your profits run" portion that stays in until the move is over.

  5. ttrader


    ... change your syste ???

  6. If your system is designed to follow trends then obviously this week was not ideal for you. But just because market conditions for the last few days haven't worked out in your favor is no reason for you to be revamping your system. You're not exactly being a greedy pig for holding out for three ES points intraday, if your system is accustomed to capturing this or more, then by all means have the patience to stick with it.

    Trust me, the second you lower your target and decide to just settle for a couple points based on the last few days, the market will run 15 handles -- you'll be leaving profits on the table the other way :)