Question about logging and journals?

Discussion in 'Trading' started by new2trading, Sep 14, 2002.

  1. I am new to trading and want to learn as much as possible. Can anyone tell me what they think is the most important information to log concerning trades? Such as share size, price, time of trade etc....... Also if anyone has a blank copy of their daily log I would appreciate you letting me check it out. Thanks again.

  2. One


    I use Access, a data base manager similar to the one included in Microsoft works. If you are familiar with Excel, you can learn to use a data base in short order. There are probably prettier and more user friendly software apps. available, but Access allows me to do exactly what I need and gives me the flexibility to add new fields easily in a familiar format. If I wanted to, I could set up a link to populate the fields automatically, but I do not do so, because I want the data base to be a clean, independent check of my brokerage records.

    I tried several formats, and decided on listing each fill/transaction as a record. This kept the fields to a minimum (e.g., versus entering each "trade" as a record, which necessitated separate fields in the same record for all the buys and sells associated with scaling in and out of a trade.) All closed trades are MTM with the same price (1.00 in my system) allowing the P/L report to calc. correctly.

    Here are the fields I use:
    -Size (positive for buy, negative for sell)
    -MTM (mark to market price)
    -Open (entry indicates to open a position)
    -Multiplier (to compute P/L)
    -Type (for tax purposes, futures, stock, interest, etc.)
    -Closed (entry shows related positions are closed)
    -Signal Type (for gauging the real time effectiveness of diff entries)

    All of this fits on the screen for easy entry and allows me to write, run, and rerun reports to find exactly what I need based on any sorting criteria I like (e.g., to reconcile brokerage statements as of a particular date or graph P/L by signal type.) Obviously, it is not a system that market makers in options say could use to access and monitor risk, but it is adequate for my needs as a position trader. On the other hand, it is more flexible and informative than the daily position and risk reports I received as a firm trader.