Vince's Trading Journal - Advice Needed!


Junior member
I'm going to be posting my day trades not only to analyze them and see what I'm doing right and wrong, but mainly to get feedback and advice from this trading community. Please inform me if you see something that I haven't noted in terms of what I can improve!

About my setup:

9 and 20 EMAs
50 and 200 SMAs
ECI indicator (yellow dots - indicates price contraction, usually followed by a breakout but doesn't indicate direction)
Top indicator (indicates possible breakout with target levels)
Trend pivots
CSA indicator (multi-indicator with trend painting function)

I am experimenting with various strategies, mainly momentum plays, including:
Bull Flag
Ascending Wedge
MA/VWAP retracement/bounce
MA/VWAP trend

At the open I'm looking at stocks that have gapped up with high volume for ORB or momentum pullback trades. Then I'm watching scanners for HOD moves to enter with the momentum, on pullbacks or when steadily following trend. I'm also looking for oversold LODs for potential reversal trades. I look for key support and resistance levels and half and whole dollars to inform my decisions.

I'm only paper trading for now so I'm not worrying about values and share size- I'm entering with 100 shares of each stock regardless of value. My stop loss is right below key levels depending on the setup. I'm selling half at 1R (a key level, ATR or the value of the stop loss) and raising the stop loss to breakeven, then selling the rest at 2R or letting it ride if there's no resistance.

Right now I'm trying to formulate and solidify a winning strategy. When I get more comfortable executing trades I'm going to limit the paper account size to the capital of my real account (quite small) and work with more realistic values and share sizes.
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October 20 - 4/1/3 +$265/-$104.25=$160.75

BABA (+$103) / CRSR (+66.50) / CBLI (+$18) / WEI (+$77.50) / BBBY ($0) / DKNG (-$96) / RUHN (-$8.25)

Takeaway points for the day:

Enter closer to key level
Don't buy on red 1 min candle to enter
Wait for pullback (if entering during trend)
Don't buy on red 5 min candle, even if 1 min candle is green. Don't sell at breakeven if uptrending. Don't chase the trend.
Confirm pullback breaks previous high.
Take profit at 1R
Don't chase the breakout.

BABA (+$103)

Entered after 1st bullish candle from ECI breakout / overall uptrend / rising from dip / held VWAP / broke premarket high. Exited near VWAP upper band / break of previous swing high.

Enter closer to key level

CRSR (+66.50)

Entered at VWAP (false) breakout / ECI indicator / Top indicator. Sold half at first Top target / premarket high. Bought more at dip / VWAP bounce. Bought again at premarket high break. Exited at today's high.

Wait for green 1 min candle to enter

CBLI (+$18)

Entered at ECI break / Top. Entered again at dip. Sold half at VWAP break. Exited at breakeven.

WEI (+$77.50)

Entered with steady 9EMA trend. Took profit at new highs of day.

Wait for pullback (entering during trend)

BBBY ($0)

Entered at dip / green / ECI / Top. Sold half at breakeven. Bought again during uptrend. Exited at breakeven.

Don't buy on red 5 min candle. Don't sell at breakeven if uptrending. Don't chase the trend.

DKNG (-$96)

Entered at pullback, after VWAP break (false) (saw the chart too late). Ideal entry - Break of first Top line.

Confirm pullback breaks previous high.

Entered at break of VWAP top band / prev. day close, target premarket high.

Take profit at 1R

RUHN (-$8.25)

Entered during breakout uptrend. Stopped out.

Don't chase the breakout.

October 21, 2020 - 2/1/8 +$140.70/-$177.50= -$36.80

MRIN (+$81.70) PYPL (+59) ASTC (-$60) TQQQ (-$48.50) MRIN (-$27) DKNG (-$21) NKLA (-$9) PLIN (-$6) GAB (-$5) BRN (-$1)

Today my timing was off and I struggled to find good setups. I've also been letting some losing trades run since I'm only using a paper account so I've been losing more than I would in a real account. I think I'm going to stop this and abide by my stops.

I've been using Trade Ideas scans on youtube live streams because I'm afraid Thinkorswim's scans are subpar. However, there's a slight lag in the youtube streams so it seems I'm always a bit behind. Maybe I'll try Thinkorswim's scanners tomorrow.

Today's takeaways:

Don't enter with overhead resistance very close
Enter closer to VWAP/9 EMA.
Enter closer to 5 min Top
Don't chase the trend without entrance signal
Don't enter overextended from 9 EMA
Don't enter after bullish candle
Don't enter without setup on 1 and 5 min charts

I'm not sure about the following ideas. If anyone can share some insight it would be appreciated!

Don't enter at the top of a large candle?
Wait for 1 min pullback?
Don't enter over VWAP top band?

For more context, see the attached file.

It's a bit time consuming to upload the images of the trades to a website and then link each of them here in this post, so I'm simply attaching the document with the charts if you're interested to see the trades.


  • PaperTradeOct21.pdf
    1.4 MB · Views: 234
October 22, 2020
3 winners, 6 losers


Enter closer to key levels
Take some profit at 1R
Pay attention to buy/sell buttons

It seems a bunch of the trades simply didn't go my way. I can't identify anything that I did wrong so if anyone sees something that I could have done better, please let me know!

October 23, 2020
3 winners, 1 loser

Today's notes:

Wait for bounce off 9 EMA to enter
Pay attention to Buy and Sell buttons
Don't enter after large bullish 5 min candle
Wait for pullback / consolidation

October 26, 2020
5 winners, 10 losers

Today's notes:

Wait for break over previous high / HOD for flag pattern?
Don't enter overextended from 9 EMA (1 min and 5 min)
Take profit.
Don't exited position too early- let stop loss hit.
Stop loss should be below 9 EMA if trading 9 EMA plays.
Wait for valid pattern to appear before entering.
Don't enter with resistance close overhead (premarket high).
Don't enter if higher time frame chart (15 min) signaling reversal
Don't enter on 2nd 1 min red candle.

October 27, 2020
11 winners, 4 losers

Today was my best day yet. Found a couple stocks that uptrended the whole day. I realized that rather than making many scalp trades on the 1 minute chart, it would be better for me to be more patient and play the longer trend on the 5 minute chart.

Today's notes:

Don't exit full position too early
Pay attention to buy/sell buttons
Focus more on 5 min chart for long term trend
Enter closer to 9 EMA (1 min)
Don't enter after large bearish candle (1 min)
Get better risk reward ratio
Adhere to stop loss
Make sure chart is at current price

October 28, 2020
6 winners, 4 losers

Today's notes:

Pay attention to buy/sell buttons.
Be careful entering on 5 min bearish candle
Be careful increasing position without confirmation
Don't exit full position without exit signal.

November 2, 2020
7 winners, 7 losers

Today's notes:

Pay attention to buy/sell buttons.
Don't enter when 50 MA is merging with 9/20 EMA?
Wait for pullback to 9 EMA (1 min)
Don't exit trade early
Take profit at highs
Don't enter when 1 min very choppy

November 3, 2020
6 winners, 2 losers

I believe I'm starting to notice some improvement. I seem to be sticking to my rules better (waiting for the right setups and not chasing) and having less execution mistakes.

Today's notes:
Don't enter too early, wait for pullback

November 4, 2020
6 winners, 2 losers

Today's notes:

Don't enter with strong resistance overhead (50 & 200 MA)
Don't enter overextended from 9 EMA (1 min)
Don't enter early, wait for pullback to 9 EMA

November 5, 2020
3 winners, 2 losers

Today's notes:
Wait for pullback to 9 EMA (1 min)
Watch for overhead resistance
Take profit

November 6, 2020
4 winners, 5 losers

Don't enter after large red candle?
Don't make stop loss too tight.
Be careful entering after large bearish candle with high volume.

November 9, 2020
4 winners, 9 losers

Today's notes:
Take profit
Don't enter with strong overhead resistance
Wait for pullback to enter








November 10, 2020

4 winners, 2 losers

I've realized there are two scenarios that would benefit me if I were to use a scale-in approach rather than entering with a full position:

1. Breakout pullbacks - I don't know how far the pullback will go. Sometimes it makes it to the 9 EMA and bounces, but sometimes it just pulls back slightly and continues to rip without coming close to the EMA. The idea is to buy in partially on an initial pullback and then add to full position with confirmation- either it doesn't pullback much further and I add on the fast second breakout, or it continues to pull back to an EMA and I add on the bounce.

2. When price action shows a tendency to break slighly below the EMAs but come back to continue the trend. In this case I'll buy in partially with a bigger stop loss and add in for a pull position with confirmation.

Feedback on these two ideas would be appreciated!

Today's notes:

With pullback entries, enter partial position, increase position with confirmation

Don't ORB on daily gap down

Be careful with chop.

If tendency to dip below EMAs, enter w/small position, give more wiggle room, add to position with confirmation.

Take profit







November 11, 2020
3 winners, 5 losers

It seems I gave in to FOMO on a couple trades today.

I have a question about moving average crossovers if anyone would be so kind as to help me. It's regarding my first trade with CGC. The 200 MA was rising up to meet the 9/20/50 MAs and I took that as a bullish sign that could potentially result in an upward trend continuation due to the strong upward-moving 200 MA support. Please take a look at the behavior of the MAs on the various time frames and let me know how you would interpret them.

Today's notes:

Don't enter overextended. Wait for pullback.
Be careful entering after large bullish candle.
Be careful with overhead resistance.
Be careful with chop.
Set stop loss below lower trend line rather than MAs.
Don't chase.
Enter partial before confirmation of trend continuation.
Put stop loss below consolidation range low.







November 12, 2020
4 winners, 2 losers

Today's notes:
Improve profit-taking strategy.
Avoid choppy price action.






November 13, 2020
1 winner, 4 losers

Today's notes:
Don't enter overextended
Enter full position when entering after pullback
Stick to stop loss
Don't average down





I've decided that I need to step up my analysis game. In addition to reviewing all of my trades, I'm going to analyze every trade opportunity for the stocks I traded for the entire day. I think this will help me learn and identify high probability patterns. I'll be posting this extra analysis here in my journal.
November 16, 2020
5 winner, 4 losers

Today's notes:
Improve scale in strategy.
Improve stop loss strategy.