my journal 2

  • Welcome to the newest version of Trade2Win! We're running on the latest version of, what we consider to be, the best forum software available today. Our aim was to keep things as familiar as possible but focus on improving speed, security and usability. We hope you like the result! Please post your questions, comments, suggestions and feedback in the What's New and Feedback Thread - Sharky.
Status
Not open for further replies.

Yamato

Well-known member
Mar 22, 2003
9,840
245
123
#42
Ok, I figured it out. I can make any trades and be profitable, but I have to see it in terms of quality rather than quantity.

There's no way I am going to make a sequence of 50 good trades without losing track of what I am doing. I can only focus on making ten good trades at a time. Then I have to take a break. If I don't, losses start coming in.

So this is how I am going to play it, in this game, and in real trading. Only x number of trades without taking a break. In real trading, one trade per day should do it.

In this trading, I can pretty much be confident that if I only make 10 trades, the balance will be a positive one. If instead I start out with the plan to bring my account from 10k to 100k, it will not work out. Because I'll be in a rush, push my luck, and see opportunities where there aren't any. Right now I don't feel there's any need for indicators of any sort. The chart tells you enough. But maybe indicators are what I'd need to make more than 10 trades in a row: they're probably what's necessary to implement a semi-automated trading system (manually executed). The only problem is that I don't know yet what exactly I am doing in those ten trades that makes me profitable. I can't describe it univocally yet. What I do know is that each time I exceed that number of trades, I start losing money. In real trading, it's worse, and, as soon as I exceed the two trades per day, I start losing money.
 

Yamato

Well-known member
Mar 22, 2003
9,840
245
123
#43
Ok, I am done for a few hours. I've played about 5 (round-trip) trades, and managed to be profitable. Next time I'll play I'll try to do the same. Once I can make a rule out of this profitability on about a dozen of trades at a time, I might try to increase the number of trades. However, once it becomes the norm, I will develop some confidence in my (technical) analysis, and such confidence will also be there when I trade with real money, and, if that happens, I'll trade better, and finally, hopefully, become a profitable discretionary trader.

My trades and performance vs buy and hold. When it says "2" trades, it means one round-trip trade.
Snap2.jpg

Comparing my results with others, and comparing buy and hold vs my results.
Snap1.jpg

This trading simulator is a gift from heaven, because it's better than any other trading simulator. As it speeds up the charts, which is not achieved by IB's paper trading account. I believe this is the best single tool available for learning technical analysis, if you can only get yourself to use it long enough, without getting bored with it.

I never considered this before: being consistently profitable does not mean that you have to be able to constantly pick overall profitable trades. It obviously just means that the trades you pick are overall profitable. No one is forcing you to trade incessantly. One guy could be profitable by making 100 trades per day, and another guy could be profitable by only making one trade per day. Maybe the guy who can make 100 trades per day is slightly better. Maybe he has improved over time.

What this simulator has taught me very clearly is that the same person (me) can be profitable in his first 20 trades and unprofitable in his second 20 trades. And this happens constantly. It has taught me that my judgement gets worse over time. It has taught me that I have little patience and a short attention span, and that I can only make 10 good trades at a time, but nonetheless it has taught me that I can be profitable, if I trade at my own pace. And even that I can take my losses, once I know that I am capable of wins as well.

I will now have to practice a lot more to see if this is really true and I can have a sequence of 10 overall profitable trades at any time, on any chart I am given. Once I develop total confidence in that, it will just be a matter of adapting my skills from the customizable speed of the simulator to the constant speed of the markets (if that can be done): obviously the real market does not go forward when i click a button (like on the simulator). It goes faster and slower, depending on the timeframes, but never at the optimal speed for me. If I wanted to see an acceptable speed from the real markets I'd probably have to trade 1 minute candles, but that may be too fast and then I would not have enough time to detect s/r levels, and commissions and spread costs would kill me.

The one thing that spoils me in this simulator is that you can make it go forward exactly when you're ready for it. It would be like playing tennis with someone and be able to freeze the other player for a few mintues, to take a break. It would as if you were boxing and were able to freeze the opponent to evaluate him and then avoid getting punched by him. The real market keeps on moving, and by the time you appraise it, it might have punched you with a move against you, and, without a preset stoploss, that will hurt so much that you won't be able to react, and keep him from punching you further.

With this option to freeze the other player (price, your opponent), this simulator takes all anxiety away from trading (also for the fact that you're not investing real money). However it is a very good tool, the best trading tool I've ever found. Better than any book, manual or similar.
 
Last edited:

Yamato

Well-known member
Mar 22, 2003
9,840
245
123
#44
To concisely describe what seems to work, I'd say: you look at the chart, and if it goes up, you look for long trades, if it goes down you look for short trades, and if it goes sideways, you look for counter-trend trades. In all situations, you go against the smaller timeframe. If it goes up, you go down and viceversa on the shorter timeframe. On the larger timeframe, if it goes sideways you can pick both directions. If it goes up you can only pick long trades, and if it goes down, only short trades. This is like my previous weather comparison: if it's raining you bet on more rain, if it's sunny, you bet on more sun. The range comparison is not available as far as weather.

Another important thing is that you play s/r levels mostly in range situations, whereas they're much harder to use when you have a trend.

Another thing to say is that in these 3 situations:
1) uptrend
2) downtrend
3) range

Things could change, and if price suddenly breaks out of the range, this turns the chart into an uptrend. All things said over and over again in forums and text books but you never care about it unless you see for yourself, and actually hearing it repeated over and over again has kept me from understanding it, since I perceived it as the usual crap that everyone talks about. I mean you hear on tv people praising madonna and britney spears, saying they're great artists, and similar stuff, so pretty soon you automatically assume that if everyone says something, that thing is bull****. The same applies to horoscopes, religion... everything. So that's what I assumed about trading facts as well. Cnbc? Crap, since everyone is watching it. S/R? Crap. But maybe in trading things everyone talks about are actually important simply for the fact that everyone talks about them. In this sense, it might be a great idea to start listening to cnbc as well. A clear example of this is the 7.30 CST news, which drive the markets crazy, and which I would have wrongfully dismissed according to the theory that if everyone talks about it, it's crap. I realize that for intraday trading, it's hard to ignore the 7.30 CST news, at least by staying out of the market.
 
Last edited:
Feb 5, 2004
46
6
18
UK
#45
That chart trading software is pretty cool. More than anything else it highlights how much randomness there is short term. The only way I was able to do well was by looking at 4-year chart patterns
 

Yamato

Well-known member
Mar 22, 2003
9,840
245
123
#47
From now on, here's how I will test my games. 5 trades, see how i did, take a picture, come back here, and post it. 5 trades is about what i can do right before starting to get impatient. It's a small challenge. Still work, but not so much that i'll quit in the future. I can do a few of them every day. No indicators, just s/r. I am hoping to get to a point where I'll never have an unprofitable 5-trade series.

Starting from now:

Snap1.jpg

Four big losers (no stoplosses, total gambling, due to the added pressure from having to post my trades here), and one small winner.
 
Last edited:

Yamato

Well-known member
Mar 22, 2003
9,840
245
123
#48
Snap1.jpg

Getting better. 4 good trades out of 5 (managed to cut the loser, even though I still feel some pressure from having to post results and impress people, but less since I initially showed such a bad performance, and that got rid of most pressure). Actually I am indeed not using indicators, but I can't say I am using s/r alone: I am also using gaps and looking at how overbought/oversold price is. If I see a gap or a huge fall, and it happens next to s/r, then I take advantage of that as well. But I am not using any of the indicators offered. Just looking at the chart.

I hope i won't get tired of doing this, and will post many more of these tests in the coming weeks. Hopefully to a point where identifying support and resistance and the way to play this game will become second nature to me.

Until now, this is the summary of how I play it: if the 4 years go up, I look for long trades (based on diagonal s/r levels, or even horizontal ones, but these are rarely levels of major importance). If it goes down I look for short trades (it's rare than a stock chart goes down for 4 years). If it goes sideways, I look for both trades, based on major s/r levels. There's also situations in which a range situation turns into an trend by breaking out of the range, and I play accordingly. But these situations are not as easy.

The constant thing is that I expect price to keep behaving the way it's been behaving until now. If it's been rising, I expect it to keep on rising, until it stops. If it's been ranging, I expect it to keep on ranging until it stops. It's like the weather. If it's been raining, I expect the rain to continue, and not to have an unpredictable rotation of rain and sun. One thing this game is teaching me is to not go against the trend, because I just lose. You don't bet on sun when it's raining.
 
Last edited:

Yamato

Well-known member
Mar 22, 2003
9,840
245
123
#49
Here i saw the stock reaching 100 and I thought it would bounce back down, and it caused the whole loss. I went against the trend, merely because i had noticed that stocks bounce back down when they reach 100.

Snap1.jpg

3 wins, 2 losses. One huge loss, against the trend, and without a stoploss. I was starting to get cocky about my predictions and didn't use the stoploss.
 

Yamato

Well-known member
Mar 22, 2003
9,840
245
123
#51
Even worse... no criteria whatsoever in picking entries and exits... no stoplosses... not s/r, nothing at all. After a few trades, I start trading worse. After a few losses, I trade even worse. Whether on the simulator or not.

Snap2.jpg

There's really no way out: you can only make as many trades as your mind can take. Probably one per day for me. Because after a win, I feel invincible. After a loss, i feel like "**** this"... there's no other way than making one trade at a time and placing a lot of time in between. I think I read this somewhere, either Elder or Douglas, about someone who said he had to reset his mind after each trade. I feel like this as well. That's why automated trading is so superior: they can place 10 trades per day, 50 trades per week without letting any previous outcome affect the next trade.
 

Yamato

Well-known member
Mar 22, 2003
9,840
245
123
#53
Just got home from work, mind totally fresh, opened the simulator and managed to get a series of 5 overall profitable trades:

Snap1.jpg

I'll keep doing it just like a videogame. More than 5 trades in a row would be a little too much stress and boredom and I'd start underperforming. 5 is a a good amount. I can almost do them on just one stock (using weekly charts). I'll just keep doing this until I get good at reading charts, and until I get good at cutting losses and letting profits run. And until I just can't help being profitable. I am telling you, this chart game is better than any technical analysis manual. You just give this web site to anyone, and they'll become profitable at trading.

This chart game is good in that it isolates one component of profitability: reading the charts. Can you read the charts? Then you can be profitable at this game. After knowing this, you still don't know if you can be profitable in real time, because here you can speed/slow charts. In real trading the other component of profitability is: can you wait until it gets there? I definitely have more problems with that than with reading charts.

I tend to be compulsive, restless... one thing is trade a chart where you push a button and make the market move by a week, and then can stop it for as long as you want. Another thing is to play the same game with a market that keeps going at its own speed, which is usually too slow for me (but if I go on the lower timeframes it's too fast). On the simulator all I need is a click to make a week go by. In real trading I need 7 days, during which i will change my mind about the trade about 10 times, and will get in and out of the market accordingly. So i have to first make sure i can read the charts, and then find a way to fix this other ingredient (waiting), if I ever will be able, because otherwise I can only do automated trading, as I suspected from the start.
 
Last edited:

Yamato

Well-known member
Mar 22, 2003
9,840
245
123
#55
The genesis software is not very user-friendly but it works all right, and even though it uses massive means to do a little more than what the chart game does, it does indeed achieve quite a bit more.

You can invest on any future, index and so on, and speed up or slow down price as you please. It's almost as good as watching a movie, except you get to be part of it. If I can manage to make money on this simulator, too, the only unanswered question remains: can I do it at the real speed of the market? However, these are great steps ahead.

The question "can i do it with real money?" is not as important, because I've never hesitated in investing real money. It's almost indifferent to me: what matters is winning this game, whether with real money or with simulation. The boring part was not - as I erroneously thought - that I was investing real money, or rather it wasn't just that. The boring part was the speed of the markets. The simulator going fast is almost as exciting as investing real money when the 7.30 CST news gets released.
 

Yamato

Well-known member
Mar 22, 2003
9,840
245
123
#56
here's the ratio

Here's the ratio that you need to profitably trade any chart... 200 candles of any timeframe are good to predict the next 10 candles.

Whether in real trading, in chart game, or in genesis' trading navigator, regardless of whether I set up hourly candles, weekly candles, 15-minute candles, regardless of the future or stock I was trading (without even knowing which stock it was), the constant seems to be that I made money by using price only... and basically support/resistance, which is another way of saying price, but what I mean is without adding any indicators to the chart, not even trendlines... well basically everyone ultimately trades according to price, even those using 10 indicators (which are derived from price).

So, given these results (which I'll keep on monitoring in the future, because one can never be too sure about this), and the fact that stock or timeframe do not matter, but just the past 200 candles are necessary to predict the next 10 candles, we could say the past 200 candles on any timeframe and any stocks seem to be good enough to predict the future 10 candles. All you need to understand a chart and its s/r levels is the past 200 candles, which will then allow you to make a reasonable prediction on the next 10 candles. Always use this ratio of 20 to 1, and avoid getting lost in a sea of useless data. Another matter is if the next 10 candles are so small that commissions and spread costs will take away all your profits, and yet another matter is if the next 10 candles are so slow that you'll change your mind 20 times by the time those 10 candles have gone by.

Oh, and "what time it is" is an extra help which on intraday charts should not be thrown away. In the sense that there are major (reversal) cycles that take place according to what time it is. For example, 7.30 CST (the news) is an important moment, so is 8.30 (Wall Street open), so is 15.00 (the close), so is around 2.00 CST (Europe's open)... these are things that should be looked at, on top of price.

Anyway, this is fascinating... I first noticed this on the chart game, where, without knowing anything about the stock I was trading, I was making good predictions for a few candles ahead, based on the past 4 years of weekly candles (208 candles, to predict a few candles forward). We might be able to apply this rule to anything, like predicting where a person will go according to his past 20 steps, and similar... or whether it will rain in the next hour if it's been raining for the past ten hours... it's fascinating. I guess technical analysis could be defined as the prediction of future behaviour according to past behaviour (and this ratio might be implicit in this, in that you need a larger history to predict a smaller future), vs. fundamental analysis being the prediction of future behaviour based on reasons, causes...
 
Last edited:

Yamato

Well-known member
Mar 22, 2003
9,840
245
123
#57
I would go as far as saying that the first time we look at a chart, we can tell that it's intuitively predictable. But then we start noticing that it's not totally predictable, and what's worse we get kicked in the balls each time we make a wrong prediction. Then we start studying technical analysis and start getting confused. The only problem is that you're not given a stoploss when you start off. If you were told: here's your weapon (as i used to say), you can lose x or make 3 x on each trade (if you lose x or make 3 x, your trade gets closed), then we could make all our predictions accordingly, and everyone would be profitable from the start. But no, we get kicked in the nuts, and start being afraid of making predictions and start thinking it's because we were mistreated as children... and all sorts of things... maybe if we were just starting to trade with a simulator that prevents you from being kicked in the nuts every time you make a mistake, we would not unlearn that natural intuitive approach which could turn us into a profitable trader within a month of playing the chart game for example. That's what I'll try to do now: I'll ask some of my cousins to play this game (they know nothing about trading) and see if and how long it takes them to learn it. And probably this will prove my point. That this game can easily be learned, and it doesn't get learned because each time you make a mistake you get kicked in the balls. I think this reminds me of some schools I went to, where teachers manage to make you hate pleasant subjects and to make you feel like you're "just not good at math" or similar, simply because they give you homework, and make you compete with other faster students. Competition pisses you off, and the fear of not being the best also takes some of that learning capability away.
 

mr.marcus

Well-known member
Aug 26, 2003
245
174
53
London
www.interviewwithgod.com
#59
...why not set yourself an absolute target on www.chartgame.com ,which you have to achieve before even considering live trading again.Dont search for other games or outside education,just concentrate all your energies on this one task.I would aim for 25 maybe 50 winning stocks in a row....this would cut out "luck".....5 is too low an objective.....this would certainly prove that you have the reading skills you need...you would know that you know.
 
Likes: Waterfield

Yamato

Well-known member
Mar 22, 2003
9,840
245
123
#60
Sounds good. But since I am constantly on the verge of quitting I'll be happy with just doing a few 5 trades series for now. I can't handle more than 5 trades in a row.

I think you misunderstood what I meant by 5 trades in a row. I don't mean that I'll have 5 profitable trades and then just quit practicing. I mean I'll do a lot of practice, but just 5 trades at a time.
 
Last edited:
Status
Not open for further replies.