The Fast And The Facetious

general-william-tecumseh-shermanWow.

Wow.

Wow.

Now THAT was a market open.

The New York Stock Exchange blasted off into action the way I love. Of all the days I didn’t get up earlier to watch CNBC I had to sleep in on this one. I don’t know what the news is, maybe it’s the James Comey thing but to wake up and see the Dow Futures down -170, I knew something had to be up. But I didn’t know that the action would be like this. This the type of cash opens dreams are made of.

You can tell by my tone things ended up favorably for me – and they did. I needed this and I’m glad. I took size on YM futures over the ES because I felt like whatever was moving the Dow would move it for more ticks than the S&P would move thus ensuring me more money. I had taken another trade on Wheat this morning again and I got a respectable amount of ticks on that. All in all, I traded in a risk averse way; tailored my exposure to what I saw in the market, held on to my cowboy hat and yee-hawed all over the DOM to a lush green PnL number. I don’t know what tomorrow’s market will bring but I really want to savor today. It’s been a long time since I’ve had an easy market day like the one I’ve had. Lately, it seemed as if I was dragging elephants in the mud just to get +15 ticks here and there.

All the risk management that I’ve employed in the past month has become worth it. Because I wasn’t swinging the big bat until now, I saved up enough cash and emotional capital to have the courage to do what I needed to do today. I don’t think I’m going to take anymore trades because the market has given me all that it’s going to give me. Instead, what I’m going to do is act thankful as hell for the strike of luck that I got. This is all the man upstairs; you can do all the prepping and intellectual vuvuzela-ing that you want but at the end of the day, the market is going to take its direction regardless and you’ve got to hope that God is on your side. Other traders can afford to rely on their intellect but not me, I suck at trading.

It’s a beautiful day on the east coast…beautiful enough that I need to be thankful. Time to pay my good luck forward.

Dumbassery

M8DBOID EC001The New York Stock Exchange started off quietly today. I got a glimpse of pre-market action while I was sipping some hot chocolate in the kitchen so in keeping with tradition from yesterday, I didn’t size up for the open. I did size up on one move and combined with one other trade, that made the difference for today. I wanted to keep my NYSE open trading short because I felt like something was brewing in my stomach. I had one of those gas station food packs yesterday and it may not have been such a smart decision.

So, with the cash open, I felt like I would put myself in an unmanageable hole if I went size right away, and I felt like today’s market was going to be one of those lazy movers so instead of trying to whip some contracts around and hoping that I hit onto a move, I just used a handful of small ones to determine where the possible orders are coming from and what direction they were headed. After some ups and downs on the PnL, I felt like I could take some size and I did. Even though it wasn’t for the kind of ticks that I wanted to take size on, I’m still satisfied. This morning, I took a size trade in Wheat and it worked out in my favor. I wanted to take one more trade on the Euro but I felt like the PnL reflected a good enough workday so I just let it go at that. I feel that sometimes, you only do worse to push your luck irrationally. It’s one thing if a trade is showing you a winner but it’s another thing if you get greedy for more green numbers on the PnL. In my experience that has only led to losses and as you know, I hate losses. In the end, I traded conservatively but I knew when to put up size. I made my decisions quickly and most importantly, I was flexible. This is why I still have an account today. I half don’t give a shit about the green PnL because it’s green. The important thing is that I employed risk management. I’ve been in the business long enough where “success” is just a word and it doesn’t mean anything. I’m just here to keep the score and the score is what’s at the bottom of the DOM and whether the number is green or red. I just try and I expect money everyday, but I also know that I ain’t shit in this game and I have to rely on a huge dollop of luck.

You can see how much I respect this business, don’t you? If not, then please see that I regard it lower than 99% of the homeless population in New York Penn Station – and that’s really saying something about this business.

Nevertheless, I’m thankful that I got out of today with a positive PnL. Trading is tough and it’s really not for the faint of heart or for the incompetent – two qualities that I espouse on most days but still somehow end up positive. Today is going to be the first 90 degree day in the East Coast so I’d like to go out and take the fiancée to lunch on her break. I’ll probably take her to some outside seating restaurant or something – you know, keep the aesthetics nice and bougie so that there’s no complaints that I don’t take her out hehe. I’m just kidding, I love taking her out. This is just my long winded way of saying that I appreciate that I can even do this for her and for me as well. To be able to enjoy the day without worrying about the stupid PnL is a blessing in and of itself and it only comes when you completely refuse to take the stupidity of the capital markets. I’m thankful to the man upstairs for giving me that realization. We are valuable beings and there’s no room for something as stupid as trading to attack our sense of self worth and self-esteem. For now, I’ve logged out of the market and told it to suck camel balls.

I’ve got a whole day ahead of me to be thankful.

Negative Start To The Week

RooftoRunThe New York Stock Exchange traded slowly out of the gate this morning. I had a feeling that it would because I sat down for a few minutes last night to survey the action on the Nikkei and there was a little bit of weakness there. Coupled with China’s slowdown in manufacturing production, I just felt like the malaise would make its way over to London and then over to New York. I just decided that I wouldn’t size up but neither would I take my default contract size for the cash open. It was all for the good because even though the Dow did take a direction, most of the steam was from the pre-market move and everything after the opening bell was just pickings from the ground.

I did attempt to trade the cash market but I did not do well at all. I did not perform as well as I could have performed and even though I made it a point to just stay in the Nasdaq to preserve capital, things just didn’t really pan out PnL-wise. I also took a trade on Cocoa and the British Pound. While I got 3 – 4 ticks on each asset, it wasn’t enough to really make a dent on my cash open failure after commissions. I just ended up giving myself more of a headache. Still, I’m glad that I traded today and that I did what I needed to do to protect the account. The only consolation on a losing day like this is that I took a relatively miniscule amount of risk and didn’t allow slow markets to turn against me. In the end, not only did I preserve my frame of perspective but I also preserved the gains that I got last week and since this is already the third week of May, it’s really important that I hold on to what I’ve got instead of swinging wildly at whatever pitch gets thrown at me.

I don’t have a whole lot to do today outside of some accounting and check balancing. It seems like this week – when I’m going to be busy – will be the week that the East Coast will be getting pre-summer weather (go figure). It would have been nice if this was the case two weeks ago when I was completely doing jack-shit and I could have enjoyed the sun. I wasn’t particularly thrilled about the results of this morning because like I said: I’m in this dumb business to make money. I’m not in it for hollow victories and Instagram posts with positive messages written in cursive. I firmly believe each morning that I will make money and I don’t have time for days when I don’t. Still, I know that I do have to be thankful for a lot outside of trading. I was actually thinking about taking the grill outside to cook some bbq for the fiancée when she gets home from work later this afternoon. Mother’s Day was nice as we got to see both of our mothers but because of the weird weather, we just had to do oven cooking or going out to eat and you know how crowded those restaurants can be on this occasion. That being said, since I didn’t get to grill yesterday, I figure I might do it today.

I’m a pretty lucky guy. I’ve got a lot to be thankful for. But I can’t stand this stupid business when I don’t get money. If trading was a pig, I’d slow roast the crap out of it without a second of hesitation – that’s how frustrating this business is to me.

Gain 20 Pounds Just By Reading This Post!

I took the day off today.

It’s not like I could even really afford to. It’s just that I had too many engagements swirling around me and I knew that it’d be better to have a PnL that was zero with zero commissions rather than have a $0 PnL before commissions or worse. The only thing that I don’t like about taking days off is that I completely miss the cash market open and I have to have a sense of how things open in order to gauge what kind of mood the market is going to be in.

But since it’s a Friday, I can kind of let things slide. I’m not usually one to lose discipline like that but hey…YOLO (do kids even use that term anymore?).

I’d like to say more market related things but there isn’t really a point to doing that so, as the title of the post says; here’s some food porn to take us all into a comatose state going into the weekend.

Hobbling Along

10f568c7cbb17c082b58bf2f6c9b3d32The New York Stock Exchanged traded fast out of the gates this morning. I have no idea why. I just saw it stutter a little bit before getting its grip on the pavement and we were off to the races. I decided today as well to size up because I felt like the markets were primed for some type of move. I personally love easy days like this where EVERYBODY can make money – it makes the job a little more palatable and I have the freedom to decide whether or not to take Friday off.

I only took two assets to trade today because I felt like what I’d be doing in size in the cash markets would be enough. I waited for a couple of minutes and got kicked around in the ES before dropping it like it was hot on a nice shorting opportunity. We all know where the market went after that. So I booked profits and traded the British Pound. That particular trade could have worked out better but I just felt like I didn’t want to let the market keep hobbling around so I just decided to close out the trade. I got 6 or 7 ticks on my default size so it’s nothing to complain about but nothing to write home for either. Nevertheless, I am thankful. Before the opening bell went off, I had that old familiar feeling of fear about what I was doing in the market but I settled myself remembering that the day can bring anything – positive, negative or break-even – and that it’s up to myself and only myself to react to it in a proper and PROFESSIONAL way. What is a professional way? Basically, you don’t flip your shit and you take your losses fast and you take your losses small, you recognize where the risk is and where the danger zone prices are and you are all peachy. You get this through learning about the market, through experience and through a willingness and humility to experience this dumb field that, for some reason, I never get out of. It’s like a toxic marriage that works. Yes, I really am describing trading to that.

I’m thankful though because trading has brought me a lot closer to God (especially on the days where I fuck up my account). And I’m not talking about that New Testament crap either. I’m a big believer in the big JC (Jesus Christ for the non hip) but I don’t really buy the lovey-dovey crap. Just give me some of the Psalms and Proverbs, ye Quartermaster and I’ll be on my way (+1 if you get that movie reference). Anyway, I’m thankful to God that I have this experience and that I can make the type of decisions that I make when I go head to head with my own stupidity in the market day. It’s such a hard and competitive business that it is a struggle to stay thankful but you also have to be careful not to get lulled into that ignorant good loser mentality about stops protecting your capital. This is something that I had to learn the hard way and I’m thankful that I did. Ok enough of my rambling. I am late in putting up this post because I decided to watch Alien: Covenant trailers and am trying to decipher if David the android for real dropped those pathogen canisters on the Engineers gathering below the newly arrived ship. It’s nuts. But again, the fact that my lazy ass can lie on the couch and deliberate about these things whilst holding an Apple tablet so light that it might as well be an imaginary toy if I were back in the 90’s is really nothing short of a miracle and a testament to how fortunate I’ve become after realizing that in the grand scheme of things, I really have no idea what the hell I’m doing nor am I grounded in some type of admirable intellect. I’m just a dumb fool that’ll be eating a Chipotle’s later this afternoon with a fiancee that miraculously likes staying with me and a PnL that cooperated for today.

It’s cool. I’ll take that. And even though I want more, I’m going to be extremely thankful for this moment.

“Noiiiiiceee!!”

RooftoRunThe New York Stock Exchange ran a little bit which was cool. I needed one of those types of mornings. It looked as if this week was going to be a total wash but because I got two solid moves, my outlook on today has shifted dramatically. But I’m still not happy about the way the week started. I guess in the end, it’s all about the way you finish rather than the way you start.

As I said yesterday, I was going to be going into the market open with size as I felt like if the market was going to run, today was going to be the day it would. I don’t know, maybe it was a sixth sense about geopolitical stuff, FBI Director Comey being fired, or the NSFW video my best friend sent me but I just felt like the cash markets were going to move today. I’m glad that I had the courage and the conviction to do what I needed to do. It was all the more important today because I didn’t want to take any other trades. I just traded the indices and I bounced. So I saw the move in the early going, got on it for size – determined that the thing wasn’t going anywhere and then reversed for a small number of contracts to lessen the risk and when that kept going, I was like…”noiiiiiice”. At the end of the day, I did what I needed to do to reduce my risk and the second trade was pretty much the one that made my day. I was expecting my first trade to not pan out or even give me a loss so having both trades work out was pretty cool.

I’m thankful that I didn’t lose money today because it would have really sucked balls if I did. I had a hard enough time trading yesterday and if I lost money today, I probably would have been a miserable wreck and would have gone to the mall and made some outrageously stupid purchase like the Nintendo Switch or something (it’s not really that stupid). Either way, I’m just really lucky that today wasn’t a bad day. I don’t like to lose on consecutive days but I know that there are times when you do well and there are times when you are drinking gutter water and you have to have the stomach to filter out what’s good for you and expel what is bad. Still, I can’t help but feel like crap. There is a new day tomorrow yes, but today I want to live it in a way where I am thankful for all the stuff I have because I am lucky.

I’m not smart, I’m lucky and it’s ok with me.

I’m Not A Good Loser

77bdd6e367dfe91371285de6869c907bThe New York Stock Exchange traded slowly today out of the gate but it started to pick up a little steam I suppose once someone announced their earnings. I forget which company it was but I know that it’s a big index component so I figure that some people already had the heads up and started their orders. Whatever the case, I was able to take some ticks out of the market but it wasn’t enough of a move where I felt like I could size up so I just decided to leave it at my default size. It feels like we might get a little bump in volume later in the day but I’m not going to be trading at that point. I’d rather just get my trading done in the morning.

I had a couple of big trades today for size but unfortunately, they didn’t really work out for the best. I had put on an early morning trade in Wheat and then attempted a midmorning trade on Cocoa. I also did a British Pound trade last night. All three didn’t work out and thus it carved into what I had made in the cash open. All in all, I am negative on the day but at least not obliteratedly (is that a word) negative. It’s just a day that I’d like to move on from. I’m thinking that I’d like to push another trade but like I said last post (maybe), there comes a point where risking more in terms of PnL value might just impact the way you think about trades and thus could negatively impact you some more. I trust my ability to trade implicitly, but I don’t trust the craziness that is known as the capital markets and I know that even a methodology rooted in rational thought more often than not produces losses. I’m just glad that I traded properly and according to my risk parameters. I know that today was a losing day and that yesterday was a losing day as well. It’s not fun to start off the week like this and I always like to win at whatever I do but the best thing I can do on these days is to not push negative trading days. But yeah, I traded well process-wise and didn’t allow myself to get caught up in a negative cycle.

I think I’ll probably hold off on making anymore big trades for tomorrow. I’ll probably trade the cash open on size but that’s about it. I’m not going to be looking for any other assets to trade simply because the market just doesn’t seem to be in a decent mood overall and no matter how many other things I try to trade, it never seems that things are panning out. Again, I’m not one to push so I know when things are going badly. It’s just best to sit things out.

It’s a nice day today. I need to get some grocery shopping done. I’m thankful that I’ll have a backdrop of blue skies and clouds to drive through as I go through my day. I’m thankful for my life and the chances that I get.

I’m lucky; it’s a double edged sword because I’m not sure if I’m intelligent enough to get through life without the amount of luck that I have.

Wish I Could Have Done Better

M8DBOID EC001The New York Stock Exchange opened so tepidly this morning that I wonder why I even decided to take trades on the cash open as a whole. It was one of those mornings where I had to look at the screen and wonder if my connections were good because that’s how slowly the markets were creeping. I guess it had something to do with the French Elections because my lingering suspicion was that the market wasn’t overly approving of Macron. Still, it’s nice that this issue is out of the way and that the market can do whatever it’s going to do. But again, I don’t waste my time on geopolitical punditry. At most, I can waste a sentence or two on it. This is all about trading.

After seeing how grossly sloppy the market opened, I took a couple of trades on the Dow and the Nasdaq. It was a slobfest; a loss here, a gain there which produced a PnL more twisted than a F1 car wreck. I had taken an earlier position on Wheat and that didn’t work out at all. I was thankful that I didn’t get stopped out even though I incurred a loss. Then I tried Cocoa and that didn’t work out either. Nothing really worked out as I was looking for more action so much so that I even considered trading the 10 or 30YR. In the end, my PnL was just too down that I didn’t want to risk anymore capital in the open market. Today was just one of those days were I just flat out lost.

However, I’m glad that I didn’t lose on my entire PnL limit. It’s a small consolation and you know that I’m not a good loser – in fact, I’m a very ugly loser. I just don’t like to lose anything whether it’s checkers, Madden, or in the markets. I just don’t like losing because in my mind, if you’re comfortable losing the market is just gonna keep hitting you and hitting you. So whenever I have days like this, I just mentally give the market the middle finger and figure out things that I’m thankful for in my life – and I do have alot to be thankful for so it doesn’t look well for me to act like an ingrate. I have tomorrow to make money and if I don’t make money tomorrow then there’s the next day and the next as long as I take care of my capital and I don’t let the market shove its foot down my throat. I don’t know what action there will be tomorrow but I know that I’m going to be involved in it.

I’d like to take this time for the last paragraph of this post to appreciate where I am at this moment. Things aren’t bad, but things aren’t really that rosy either. I’m just glad that I’m alive and that I’m experiencing decent things. Even though there’s stress, I know that these things will pass so it’s up to me to get my own sense of perspective on things. I don’t know if I’m happy – especially after this morning’s trading – but I do know that my heart is in a peaceful nook, as if it’s settled on a cloud and I can sorta wait things out.

Hope y’all are having the same type of day or that the week has started like that for you.

Well, It Was As Much Of A Day As I Could Trade

10f568c7cbb17c082b58bf2f6c9b3d32The New York Stock Exchange started off quickly today which was cool. It’s the energy that I need to have. Of course, as you’ve seen in my posting, that kind of trading just doesn’t happen in the market a lot if any. It’s to that degree where when I do see the market slithering like that, I know that I have to make the most of my day and my opportunities.

Unfortunately, while the opportunities where there, practical application just failed me. It was a case where up was down and down was right. I’m sure you know how it goes. I traded the cash open and felt like I could go size on the ES. Additionally, I scalped for small size with the Nasdaq. Then, for my final trade, I went fishing for money in Orange Juice. Pretty much everything felt like they had momentum but then things just faded afterwards. I thought I’d have a basketfull of really good gains but in the end, everything just kind of ended up fading away. I hate it when I’m really well-positioned only to end up having the trade go sour. It seems like that’s my life story these days.

However, unlike last Friday’s British Pound debacle, I was a heck of a lot more careful and deliberate in my trading and to end the week on a positive note means a lot to me. It means that I don’t have two days to think about how I screwed up and I can go home with the knowledge that I didn’t do stupid stuff to screw up my account. It also means that I can sleep real easy tonight and tomorrow night barring some unforeseen personal issue that arises. I’m a very lucky person. Although the market didn’t do what I wanted it to do, I still got something and because I’m not underwater on my PnL, I am really really thankful. Right now, the New York Stock Exchange is trading below 10. I figure this is as good of a time as it gets to just pack it in and enjoy the weekend that has been given to me by God’s generosity.

Another Scratch Day

3cc83349662986993de32476f7c2fe21The New York Stock Exchange traded in yet another muted environment. I guess everyone’s waiting for the Obamacare vote in the Senate or something. Either way, I have a feeling things will be a little tough for a while but then again you never know in this business. For all we know, next week could be nuts and we have volatility all over the place. Speaking of volatility, I’m sick of the current East Coast weather we’re having. It’s May and I’ve been looking forward to cookouts on the grill and just lounging around in the patio but for some reason it’s like things reverted back to March and I’m sitting here with this dumb look on my face as I walk out of the house with shorts and a polo shirt.

I just traded the Nasdaq at the cash open. Even though I was going to trade the Dow, I just didn’t feel like it was going to wiggle all that much so I decided to leave it alone and try to catch the move for Feeder Cattle. It was also no dice there as I pretty much offset the ticks that I made in the earlier market with a loss on size. That got me really annoyed. At the end of the day, I just covered commissions, nothing positive nothing negative – just the opportunity loss of time doing something that would have been pleasurable to me. I will say though that I came into the market knowing what I was doing and that I didn’t allow thoughts of overtrading to interfere with work. I also made quick decisions and stuck by my convictions. Even though I wish I could have made money, I just have to chill out and not take these days too seriously. I got really ticked when the Feeder Cattle trade didn’t work but I just picked a wrong direction and it showed me that right away. There was nothing that I could do.

I’m thankful that I didn’t screw up too badly today. I think that alot of it was luck that Feeder Cattle didn’t move that hard against me according to my risk. Even though I had size, I knew where I had to get out in order to protect the PnL and live for another day – and that’s exactly what I’ll have tomorrow, another day. I wish I could write like I was writing before but to tell you the truth, I have a whole shitload of distractions going off around me right now and it’s making me feel uncomfortable. I can’t post in the time I want to and it’s starting to even impact my daily schedule. I don’t like it and I wish that things were different but the only thing that I can do is fight these distractions until I raise enough of a shitstorm that the distractions decides to leave me alone.

Trading is such a weird business.