NQ vs ES for getting started in futures

Discussion in 'Index Futures' started by Brutus, Aug 12, 2002.

  1. Brutus


    I recently started trading the NQ futures in beginning of July. But recently I have been considering switching to the ES futures. The ES futures seem to be less spikey than the NQ.

    I am curious about the opinions other people have about the two. What do you like and don't like about the behavior of each.

    Thanks ...

  2. Hi Brutus

    Why not trade both?

    Meaning...if your monitoring both charts and one particular one has the better trade setup or a trade setup when the other doesn't...it's obvious which one you should trade for that particular trade setup.

    It's something I've recently been doing for the past few weeks. Works well.

    As a discretionary trader...sometimes I may see a picture perfect trade setup in one when the other is doing the opposite...it's these trade setups I ignore because I want both the price of the ES or NQ to be moving in the same direction.

    Then...if they are moving in the same direction and I see a particular trade setup in one...I trade the particular Emini that has the trade setup or better trade setup.

    I guess it comes down to your own trades setups (strategies)...they themselves should determine which you will trade at a particular time during the trading day.

    Today I traded both with more success in the ES than the NQ.

    Yet, I have notice that during low volatility...the ES has the clearer Japanese Candlestick trade setups and during high volatility the NQ has the clearer Japanese Candlestick trade setups.

  3. I trade both now, but started with ES, which I'd recommend for getting your feet wet. As observed, NQ tends to be more sporadic and volatile than ES. However, if you use a trading system that works with NQ, I don't see any reason not to trade it.
  4. Rather than looking at indicators i like to watch the price action of the chart itself so i prefer to trade the ES. the movement of the candlesticks is almost constant whereas the NQ price action frequently " dies" for 15 seconds many times during the day. i find this to very distracting in trying to read the price. probably just my particular style though.
  5. Brutus



    I could trade both but I think it would be better for me to focus on one right at my point of the learning curve.

    The entire month of July I did well trading the NQ. It must have been beginners luck because August so far has been killing me. Maybe I got cocky about trading and the market put me in my place. I made around $500 in July but now I'm down around $1100 for August thus far.

    I am trying to keep things simple. To sum up my strategy it is basically buying pullbacks on the current trend. Its completely discretionary. Today kicked my butt since there was not really any good trends ... until towards the end of the day.

    I'm considering starting a journal and posting my trades for people to make fun of, compliment, learn what now to do, etc. Ahh what the hell, I might as well do it.
  6. ES is composed of Dow and NDX if i'm not mistaken. That would make it much less volatile in theory compared to the 100% technology index futures - NQ.

    In order for the ES to be as volatile as the NQ, the DOW and the NDX would have to rise and fall in synch, that usually doesn't happen.
  7. Hi Brutus,

    Your absolutely correct. If your new to the Eminis...I also recommend the trader only concentrate on one with their trade setups.

    Also, I think a lot of traders got cocky or over confident these past few months (nice strong trends...and lots of them through out each trading day to boost the ego and bank account) in comparison to the choppiness of August.

    I took a big loss last week while still adjusting to the lack of volatility. Further, it wasn't the loss that I became concerned about...it was how I will make the appropriate adjustments in trading the Eminis.

    Therefore, how we react to winners or losers is more important than the winning or losing trade themselves.

    Look forward to taking a peek at your journal.

  8. tampa


    "I am trying to keep things simple. To sum up my strategy it is basically buying pullbacks on the current trend. Its completely discretionary. Today kicked my butt since there was not really any good trends ... until towards the end of the day."

    You don't really need help from others - you answered your own question, and dilemma. There was no trend for most of the day!

    Try looking at a 15 minute chart to see the real trend - if it is still unclear, move to a 30 or 60 minute. If you still can't see a trend, then sit it out. Sure it hurts to see the market take off, but far less than to see it go against you - another lesson you should have learned. Standing aside, waiting for a real trend is a legitimate strategy.
  9. Atlantic


    what i don't like is nq's lousy volume lately. es always has more than 3 times the volume of nq. overall i guess conditions change from time to time - as it was already posted here.

    when i started watching both of them (oct. 2001) - the es had the smaller daily ranges (in dollar and in points) - and showed - at least for my style - not so good setups. nq moved more and produced the better looking pattern.

    in the last few months (since april / may ??) this has changed - es sometimes has impressive daily ranges (higher than nq's - in dollar - and sometimes even in points) - has much higher volume - and the better setups (bull flags for example) - at least on some days. and i too think that nq has much more noise (probably another symptom of the low volume).

    so i find myself in a similar situation like you i guess. i watch both - and will soon try es (again). the problem is that i just feel really comfortable when i concentrate on just one.
  10. NQ is LESS volatile than ES now. Moreover it pulls back more deeply in a trend (>50%) whereas ES just keep going once it starts moving.
    #10     Aug 13, 2002