The Road to Consistency

Discussion in 'Journals' started by trader99, Aug 30, 2019.

Post my gains in % of $$

  1. % Percentage Gain

  2. $ Dollar Gain

  1. trader99


    Hi ETers,

    As some of you guys might already know, daytrading has been a long long long journey for me. I've been doing it on/off since 2001. In between, I had jobs/career and stopped trading for years and years on end. But since 2015 I have gone back into doing it actively with pretty bad results. I was all over the map. I was doing futures, stocks, options, intraday, swing, long term etc. I was all over the place and the results reflected that. Huge up and down days/months. For me, that was not what real trading with an edge is about.

    In August 2019, I buckled down and just focused on futures and intraday(for 99.99%). I just focused on my edge and clearly defined what those edges are.

    Now the results are excellent. So this journal reflects this one IB account where I just trade futures and just intraday.

    Now, it's the end of August, I can report my monthly stats. I know it's a smaller account though much bigger than required by PDT. You do the math.

    MTD: 38% for the month.
    % of days positive: 72%
    % of weeks positive: 75%

    65% of that monthly gains is purely for futures and intraday only trades. That's what I'm so proud of! In the past, I would do all kinds of crazy trades without any consistency. I have one long term stock trade that I've been holding for weeks. It has been going up and up and up. That's my only position trade. But I don't even count that in my gain because I have a separate column for intraday gains. That's the number I look at like a hawk.

    Basically 65% of 38% is 25% on PURELY intraday trades(closed out all trades at EOD) I'm up 25% for the month.

    I have more up days than down days. In the past, I would be all over the map. UP HUGE then DOWN HUGE. Like a roller coaster. With hindsight, I think it was more akin to gambling then trading with a consistent edge.

    Moreso, the down days are small(except for that one bad GC trade since then I have manged my downside better). Every week I have been positive except for that one week with the huge negative GC trade.

    More importantly I have analyzed my trades and realized why that was happening. I was able to capitalize on my mistake today in GC and made money. Had I been trading like before I would have lost again huge on GC. This is a relief to learn from our mistakes.

    I have a job and family and other things to take care of. Therefore, I don't really have time to post charts of trades. This journal is really for me to keep myself honest.

    What I will post is my daily or at worst weekly stats. I'm more interested in consistency and controlling downside. If I happen to catch a big day then great. But consistency is the key. Once I have then then it's just a matter of scaling.

    In September and onward, do you guys prefer I post my gains/loses in terms of percentage or $? I think most daytraders thinks in terms of dollars. If so then I can post that and it can help motivate others.

    I'm still learning and improving everyday. I don't have all the answers! I'm no guru. Just working on my road to consistency.
    yc47ib, Evgeniy, remogul92 and 13 others like this.
  2. expiated


    I hope you meet with continued success!:thumbsup:
    trader99 likes this.
  3. I started a journal very recently and for much the same reasons, but I post every trade - either right after entry/exit or at the end of the day - simply because if you're going to keep yourself honest, that's the most honest you can get. There's no way, or motivation, to fiddle and fudge the numbers even in your own head ("Um, this one doesn't really count, because reasons...") Hell, just copy and paste your log - you are keeping one, right? - that would only take a few seconds.

    Other than consistency, what other key things have you learned in your process of improvement? Anything from "patience" to "using the MVWAP indicator with a setting of 13.0943543523 when the moon is in the House of the Wolf" would be interesting and useful. Per-trade gains and losses, along with the reasoning (whether you discover it to be excellent or flawed) would be absolutely fantastic if you have the time... even a 5 or 10 word synopsis would be a positive. I write that kind of thing in my journal because I believe that being able to look back at how I thought at the start, and how it evolved over time, is critical to understanding which direction to head in.

    Best of luck in your trading, and congrats on your successes so far!
    Philo Judeaus, remogul92 and trader99 like this.
  4. guru


    I guess that’s how 500%/year could happen. I just hope you’ll be able to continue doing so good and stay consistent.
    I’m mostly surprised you’re able to do this while working full-time... How?
    And I’m curious what kind of leverage/margin you’re using, or basically if each of your trades may exceed your account size.
    Looks promising.
    trader99 likes this.
  5. traider


    Can you talk about what data you use to decide on a trade? Orderbook Level 2?
  6. trader99


    No level 2. I trade futures. Even when I trade stocks and achieved similar results I never really used Level 2.

    Just pure chart, PA, TA, etc.
    Nobert likes this.
  7. trader99


    What you say is all good and stuff. But I just don't have time to enter a trade then post it on ET. Sometimes I'm in and out on a trade in minutes. Then catch the next bus. Sometimes I hold much longer. So I don't want to mess up with my trading by letting my eye of the screen. I like to enter/exit optimally(at least my type of system). Maybe for longer term trades lasting hours I can have that time freedom to post. Let's see.

    For me, the net gain/loss at the end of the day is the summary of everything I did right or wrong. That's why I focus on end of day stats. Having said that, I do noticed sometimes I trade well on several instruments but one instrument I have a big loss which offset the gains from the other instruments. This tell me poor risk management, bad countertrend trading, etc. So I need to pay attention to my losses and cut them short. Let the winners run.

    I also use Fundseeder to track this account. That keeps tabs of my analytics. Right now it's horrible stats except for Aug 2019 when I changed my strategy.

    I was on the wrong path for a long long time. Then a light bulb turned on. Now I'm heading in a better direction.

    Hopefully in 1-3 years I will have a really solid track record. Still early. Gotta work hard. Grind it out each and every day.

    Thanks for the best wishes. Good luck on your trading journey as well!
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2019
  8. trader99


    I WFH(work from home). So I have that flexibility. I don't trade the full day. Sometimes just the first hour. Or if things are really moving then I trade more.

    I don't use any more leverage than what's inherent in futures. These results are achieved with super low # of contracts given my account size. I know people here on ET think $500 margin on futures is reasonable. I think that's a CRAZY amount of risk. Besides, IB has such HUGE margin requirements compared to the bucket shops offering $500 futures margin that I feel safe. Even then, I trade WELL within my account limits. Let's say IB allows me to trade X number of futures contract, I trade a small fraction of X for now. So rather conservatively.

    But once I become even more consistent and better at risk management, then I can definitely increase the number of lots I trade. A lot of room to grow.
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2019
  9. traider


    Please post link to fundseeder account
  10. trader99


    Nope. Maybe in a 1 year when I have built up a more solid track record.
    #10     Aug 31, 2019