Futures Trading Journey

StewieStag

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Hi Everyone I'm Nick, I have no idea how many people use this forum but I wanted somewhere to document my journey and get feedback on trades I'm taking. I played poker at an ok level for a while and found that I went from losing to profitable when I was posting updates often and getting thoughts on hands I played poorly. I'm hopeful I can get the same here!

I have been trading for about 7years without any success and I believe a large reason for that is that I have tried to be a "lone wolf" and find my own strategies rather than try to learn from other traders where there edge is. Up until today I ad been backtesting a strategy I created and finally reached the point where I realized that even if there is an edge there I have no way to verify with other traders because it's all my own workings.

So I decided that I would invest more time into learning where my favorite trading youtuber has developed his edge from (https://www.youtube.com/@1minutefuturestrader). What I have learnt is that the trader in the videos ALWAYS has a very clear reason as to why he is looking at one side of the trade. He then often waits for price action to confirm this and only then enters a trade. I also notice that he moves his stops quite quickly and will not look for big moves very often, he more often looks for a quick move into previous pivots and doesn't get greedy trying to hold for a big win.

I looked through charts and began to create a bit of a trade decision process that looks like this:
  • 1. Have a clear and obvious reason to be bullish/ bearish
    • Daily levels
      • Breakouts/Breakdowns
      • Support
    • Intraday BIGGER PICTURE ideas
      • Clear break of trend
      • Clear Double top/bottom
  • 2. Confirm reason
    • Holding above/below 50ema
    • Clear trend
  • 3. Enter trades on flag breaks looking for EASY MONEY targets
  • 4. Remain aware of changing conditions
I also watched through a lot of SMB capital's videos and one thing that came up that really stood out to me was trying to master "easy money trades" and that these are really where a failing trader should focus their attention. The goal is first to have some success, then build on that success. The easiest way to do that is to try and only take clear and obvious trades that I can be more confident in having edge.

I've attached a few screen shots of the type of trades I'm going to be looking to take along with thought process.

I'm going to start of paper trading rather than buying any more eval accounts, and if I see success I will start trading 1 micro position on an Apex account I somehow got funded trading really badly. I'm giving myself until the end of the year to see if this approach will work out for me. Worse case afterwards I will take a break form trading and come back fresh another time!

Hopefully this is a long journey!!
 

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Day 1

**PPAPER TRADING**

So today I prepared pretty well for the market and identified the key daily level on NQ 14580 as our critical moment. If we broke below it and got selling we oculd have a move back to the daily 200sma, but if we held it and bounced we could see a lot of buyers coming into the market.

I did make a few mistakes today all of which were losses, and I love that because it gives me lessons for the future!

Trade 1

Short 14532.5
Out 14544
PnL -11.5

Mistake here was that I didn't really consider the importance of the London low acting as support. I was too biased as we were below the key daily level.
LESSON: Avoid trading conflict zones where we have both sides looking for trades

Trade 2

Long 14600.25
Out 14613.25
PnL +13

Good trade, reason to be bullish was the bounce off of London Low giving a double bottom, confirmation was the strength of the move

Trade 3

Long 14634.5
Out 14628
PnL -6.5

Mistake, again, trading in a conflict zone, we are right at the open range high meaning we need to wait for either a clear break + confirm or clear rejection + confirm. Did an ok job at cutting this early when I realized the error - This I MUST get better at when trading live also. If I'm not sure, get out and don't take a full size loss

Trade 4

Long 14665.5
Out 14677.75
Pnl +12.25

Good trade, reason to be bullish was breakout over the open highs, confirmation was the hold of the 50ema. Good entry, good target

Trade 5

Long 14773.75
Out 14772.25
PnL -1.5

I believe I missed a legitimate trade earlier that was a really nice signal on the 4k tick chart so felt a bit of FOMO. Was conflicted at how extended we felt... But the reality here is we broke above the Asian high, confirmed holding the 50ema so we did have a legitimate trade here. Would have most likely got out for a scratch anyway. I then didn't take the next legitimate signal because I felt confused.
LESSON: Don't allow bias of "we are extended we can't go higher" cloud judgement. We had a clear reason to be bullish, a clear confirmation & the next conflict zone is 50 points away

Trade 6:

Long 14789
Out 14794.5
PnL+ 5.5

The original thoughts here were good, I got a good entry on a legitimate signal, but I felt we were too close to the next conflict zone so I cut it early. I think this is probably an acceptable trade as we have not yet hit the resistance level and I should have left my stop at breakeven.

Results
3 wins
3 losses
+11.25

I left my PC for the final few hours of the session so missed the final two legitimate trades on the day. I believe that my edge today had 8 trades, one scratch and 7 winners, so a great day to learn from and start to confirm I am seeing things clearly.

Would love anyone's feedback on thoughts & trades!
 

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Day 2

**PPAPER TRADING**

+36.5 points

Really happy with how I traded today. I saw the areas of conflicting trading and for the most part stayed clear. The two times I did take trades in these zones I cut the loss quickly. trades from Today:

Trade 1

Long 14847
Out 14840.25
PnL - 6.75

This was in too early, we had broken out over the HOD but had not yet provided any confirmation the move was in

Trade 2

Long 14856.75
Out 14871
PnL +14.25

Much better, waited for the same breakout as trade one confirm it's self by holding the breakout level, good entry killer exit

Trade 3

Short 14804.25
Out 14795.25
PnL +9

Good patience, once we put in a clear H&S around yesterday's highs and held under 50ema looked for next flag.

Trade 4

Short 14800.25
Out 14787.25
PnL +13

Same edge as last trade. Recognized that we still had room to next conflict level at 14780

Trade 5

Long 14777.25
Out 14775.75
PnL -1.5

This had setup really nice wiht a bounce off lows & hold of the 50ema, but once I was in I looked left and saw I had removed a key conflict level. I cut the loss down very quickly after that so as not to take a full loss


Trade 6

Long 14823
Out 14831.5
PnL +8.5

Nice trade, broke out of the downtrend and gave clear confirmation of strength in move higher. Got a good entry on flag break, would have loved to hold for a break higher but running into next conflict zone so quicker to take profits.

Main lesson today is to not ignore previous levels jsut because current price action is really aggressive. When we run into conflict levels the moves stop being "easy money".
 

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Day 3

**PAPER TRADING**

Bit of a messy day today, over traded a bit probably due to some over-confidence caused by seeing how often my legitimate trades work out.

Because of the number of trades I won't go into detail jsut share the overall stats & share the pictures.

Main lesson was to refocus on the Easy Money Trades and not get caught up in the potential bigger moves.

Other main lesson was to wait for better quality flag setups to make sure my R:R is acceptable and to know that we aren't due a pullback when I get in.

Total trades 14
Wins 4, Losses 6, Scratch 2
PnL -29.75


Most of the loss was down to my last trade which was not my normal setup at all! That cost me 12 points, then trade 11 I took a trade when in a conflict zone that cost me 9.75, and my first trade I got in before a good enough flag for 9.75 as well. There was also a trade I got out for a scratch that hit my target but I didn't have the bracket set up ideally so missed out on about 9 points there.

Nice little reality check for me that I'm not ready for live trading yet!
 

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