Gonna Make This Quick

general-william-tecumseh-shermanThe New York Stock Exchange started off tired and slow today just like me. I didn’t get to look at any news in the Wall Street Journal as I stayed home for the morning. I figure it was going to be a quiet Friday and it was. It is actually the first chilly Friday in the East Coast so maybe that had something to do with it. Nevertheless, I am kind of sleepy and I want to get to the meat and potatoes of this post.

Like I said, the market traded slowly. I didn’t really get a good handle on it because I thought that after the slow opening bell, we’d get some buy orders coming in before everything just settled for the weekend. I was prepping for this but it didn’t happen. So, I just basically ended up whipsawing myself out of the cash open for a slight loss on commissions. I was winning here and losing there. In the end, I was killing my business capital so I just decided to call it a day. As for my other trades, I tried playing Orange Juice this morning and I ended up with a good handful of ticks. In the end, I was sort of productive but you know me – I always want to make more money.

While it is nice out today, my eyelids are kind of heavy and my bed is calling out to me. I am thankful of the life that I have and I am thankful that I have another day to appreciate everything and everyone around me. I’m even thankful that I have another week to look forward to in this dumb business. In the end, it’s the only one that would accept a dumbass like me so in that way I should be humble and acknowledge the fact that this is my career.

Doing The Total Bro’ Thing

profilepic4The New York Stock Exchange, from my best interpretation started off slow and then proceeded to get choppier and choppier as the day moved on. The reason why I could only interpret the cash open was because I had an unexpected distraction from my normal schedule. My neighbor’s kid missed his school bus and came over to my house practically begging me for a ride to school because he knew he’d get an ass whooping if his parents found out. Luckily for him I was already a.) awake and b.) kiiiiind of ready for the day. So, I agreed to give him a ride (with the promise that he try and catch the bus on a daily basis. See? I’m still a cool guy.) to school. However, in the weirdness of the morning I had completely forgotten to pack my bag with the laptop. In the end, after I had dropped him off and got to Dunkin Donuts at 9:25, I discovered that my bag was not with me and that I was still a good 20 minutes away from the house. What a sucky morning.

I only traded the British Pound last night and I didn’t get much of a gain there because it had moved my way and then moved against me in the later hours of London trading. I didn’t lose much in this trade so I figured “eh, fuck it…” so I traded it again at the top of the 10am hour. I didn’t get much traction there, just a handful of ticks before I got uncomfortable with the way the market moved. Overall, I didn’t make much and this day certainly was not productive from a PnL standpoint.

Am I glad I did a good deed? Kind of. But it just sucked that it was at the expense of an opportunity to make money in the cash open. But then again, with the chop that this market was having, I’m just not sure if I could have beaten commissions in a meaningful way. So, I suppose there was a reason as to why things happened the way they did. I should be thankful to God for weaving his mysterious omnipotence on my daily activities. I guess I will just move on and get on with the rest of my day. I know what I need to do tomorrow so there’s that. Hopefully, I won’t have such a distraction. Until then, it’s time for me to live my day graciously and prep for the cash open tomorrow.

Tough Sledding

profile 6The New York Stock Exchange opened up tepidly this morning. There wasn’t really much by way of moves unless you were a holder. I saw from yesterday that we just sort of eased up a little bit in the indices so I wasn’t expecting any magic going into today’s session. I don’t even recall any news today out of the Wall Street Journal front page. I don’t know if it’s because I just didn’t give a shit this morning or maybe I’m just ready for the week to end. Either way, today was just one of those tougher than normal days.

I traded Orange Juice a little before writing this post because I thought that it would be a mover this morning but I just didn’t feel like there was any impetus in the market to propel its technicals, so I just left it alone. I wanted to trade Wheat but I didn’t feel comfortable there either. It seems like I am not as comfortable with trading assets during this time and I think it’s because I feel like they are non-movers. This leaves me with trading the cash open but even there, the market isn’t moving as much and it is a little frustrating. I didn’t want to get into trades where I had to hold so I ended up taking a handful of mini losses. It felt like death by a thousand cuts. I remember a trader friend used to say this to me. It is a very apt description of the business.

Today is a rather cool and breezy day in the east coast. I’m glad as I’m getting a little tired of the hot and pointless weather. The water, for me, is a little too cold to get in so it renders the sunshine useless. Nevertheless, it’s nice to sit and relax outside. The wife will be coming home early today (half-day). Life is good. God is good. This business is stupid.

Well, That Explains Everything

profilepic3The New York Stock Exchange started off slowly again but I could tell that things are beginning to pick up a little steam. I don’t think that there’ll be much of a short term impetus towards activity outside of the normal speculation but I guess we’ll just have to see. I didn’t see anything noticeable in the Wall Street Journal this morning outside of the ACA repeal efforts being torpedoed but I personally think that the market has all but priced that inevitability in. Whatever market we are seeing now is what traders and institutions believe will be the reality of a cumbersome law. Besides, with a little financial creativity I’m sure that corporate minds can come up with a way to mitigate these things in financial terms.

I only attempted to trade the Euro today early in the morning after deciding last night that it would look like a good opportunity. Unfortunately, the market didn’t go where I felt like it was going to go and instead of my expectations of more than a handful of ticks, I exited with like 10-12 when I felt like my expectations and my reasons for being in the trade in the first place weren’t being met. That left me pinning my hopes on the cash open which – as you saw – didn’t really do all that much for me. After going back and forth, winning and losing, I realized that I was going to dent my current PnL from commissions and if I did that it might as well have been like taking a loss. I don’t like losses so I just decided to pack it in. It has been a light trading week so far for me – so much so that it actually kind of surprised me that I’m not thinking of trading anymore going into the late morning. I’m thankful that I had a productive day. This wouldn’t have been possible without God’s help because lord knows if I had to rely on my intellect, I would have been screwed to high heaven (or low hell). Even though there are imperfections I’d like to iron out in my life, I sure am lucky to experience the privilege of another day with the wife, another day in this dumb business, and another opportunity to make myself better in this great country.

Speaking of the final point – this Sunday, I saw my NFL football team kneel in solidarity with each other against racial injustice and President Trump’s tweets. Prior to this, the owner of my NFL team put out a statement supporting his players and condemning the “divisive” language of the President. I have my personal opinions about the players doing this and they are not favorable. However, I will leave it at that. Why? Because it is their God and state given right to express dissent and peaceful congregation – that is what the 1st Amendment in the Constitution provides for and the Constitution is the law of the land. But what does the 1st Amendment also provide for? My dissenting view on their view. In the big picture, I agree with most of the players’ points more than I disagree. I just don’t like the way that they’re showing it. My first instinct was to react negatively to the sight of the kneeling but upon further reflection, I have to be a professional human being and respect not only their right but the provisions of the Constitution. Still, I feel the need to make one thing clear; the start of this movement and the player that started it, I feel, is misunderstood.

Colin Kaepernick, the quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers enjoyed a meteoric rise to stardom but because of hubris and a noticeable lack of tack with the media – especially for the level of his play – became collateral damage in the wake of coach Jim Harbaugh’s firing. Coach Harbaugh’s style brought out the best, not only from him but from the rest of the team. Under the replacement coach and a new playing system, Colin Kaepernick not only found himself unable to perform at a high level but actually ended up regressing so badly that he was demoted. I feel that this demotion disenfranchised him and his ego was too fragile to handle it. What followed became a classic example of a person falling from the spotlight and grasping at straws to get it back. I’m not saying there are no cases of police homicide but the way that it was portrayed in the news made it seem as if the presence of police was the sole cause of homicide rates in minority neighborhoods. This was the cause that Colin Kaepernick latched onto to keep himself in the media’s eye and he ran with it. The rest is history. I want to be as objective as I can be because I want truth, not bias. Sure, there are certain values that I stand firm in (loving the United States, taking pride in the flag, taking pride in the national anthem), but I want to make sure that I cultivate a healthy dose of skepticism to understand another person’s point of view. That being said, I just can’t help but feel like this whole anthem kneeling thing is the product of a tall-tale narrative and Colin Kaepernick’s insistence on it is reminiscent of emotionally charged-communist-mob justice-utopianism at worst and intellectual/emotional dishonesty at best. But like I said, it is his right as well as the right of NFL players to show their peaceful dissent. Do I agree with it? Absolutely not. Do I hope that this whole thing will blow over? Yes and No. Yes because I watch football to have a good time and not think about the worries of the world…but No because I feel like America has reached a tipping point in terms of what is deemed “peaceful discourse” and there has to be a crash course reminder of it. Many of us, myself included, must go back to professionalism and decency.

I know what side I stand on and for. I stand for the country and I stand proudly for our precious flag and Constitution.

Moreover, I firmly stand for the disenfranchised whites and minorities who strive tirelessly to break through financial and mental poverty. I stand with those who want to achieve the American ideal and do so honestly, with kindness, empathy and professionalism. I believe that it is time we make a concentrated, unprecedented effort to elevate and make opportunities for those with a solid sense of right and wrong, lies and truth, matured nuance and childish extremism. If you want to hate American institutions, then fine, but you also spit in the very wellspring of tangible innovation that has given you the way of life you enjoy. But again, you and the players kneeling are within your rights to do so. You will have the basic respect accorded to you by our laws but that’s where my attention for you, and my writing on this blog post, will end.

Quiet Trading

77bdd6e367dfe91371285de6869c907bThe New York Stock Exchange started off pretty subdued, although there was a bit of an upside display. I’m not sure if there’s going to be all that much news that will affect the day so I’m forecasting a chop, if anything. One thing that did catch my eye though in today’s Wall Street Journal was the blurb about debt-heavy companies borrowing more to service their existing debt. For most people that would be a red flag – and rightly so –  but in my eyes, I just see it as the near maturing of what has really been a decade long bull run in the markets since our 2008 housing crisis low. Does that mean that the market will crash in the next few months? I doubt it. I do, however, think that we could be in for some more headwinds as Russell index companies start to report weaker and weaker per share gains.

Like I said, the market opened up with a little bit of an upside move but I think that’ll be mostly it for today. I was only able to make a handful of trades in the opening period and even then, those trades had more to do with playing defense than actually making money. In the end, I neither made nor lost anything in the cash open. I’m disappointed but at least I didn’t kill myself with commissions. My other trades were a little bit different though. I played the British Pound early in the morning and didn’t really make all that much in it. It was the same for Wheat. Both assets just didn’t move well enough for me to warrant trading it any further. It was an overall quiet day.

I can’t believe we are getting a heat wave right now in the East Coast. We could have used this weather in mid-August when I was more in the mindset of actually doing summer stuff. Now, with football season in full swing I’m thinking about clearing away space in my closet for fall clothes. I can’t recall a year where the temperatures were so wonky. Anyway, I guess I’ll try and enjoy this day by having lunch outside. My cousin is in town for the day and we’ve been trying to schedule a time to catch up. This would be a nice opportunity. As always, I am thankful to God that I have another day in this dumb business. Time to prep for tomorrow.

A Fitting End

profilepic3The New York Stock Exchange opened up quietly this morning but you could tell that there was energy behind it. It wasn’t a whole lot of energy but it was certainly enough for traders to get something from. Will the rest of the day be like it? Only the next few hours will tell but I’ll tell you this: I’m not gonna be a part of it because I’m done with this week.

I traded the cash open only because there were no other trades that I felt comfortable committing capital to. I mean, there was an overnight Euro trade but I just felt like that market wasn’t going anywhere on a Friday so I just left it alone. As for the cash open, I just traded the YM and the ES. Both assets were slow to move but they moved upwards which is pretty much what I wanted albeit holding them for as long as I did was a little nerve wracking. After that, I just wanted to pack it in and call it a day.

I am reminded today of why I hate this business. Not because of my performance – which was lukewarm at best – but because I just realized that had I guessed wrong on the overall direction of the early market, I would have been killed to the tune of 4-figures almost instantly. Yet, there are people that participate in the markets that do just that. They literally allow themselves to get killed under the anticipation that the market will somehow come back and give them money. Many of these people work a heck of a lot harder than I do and love the game much more but for some reason, even after putting the game on a pedestal, they still don’t succeed. So what does this tell me about the business? Well, it just tells me that this business is shit and doesn’t deserve anymore attention than the couple of hours I give it during the day. I have a lot of other things in my life that leave me with good feelings and I’m thankful for them. I don’t need to deal with this shit for hours on end. Thank God it’s Friday.

A Quiet Afternoon

profile1The New York Stock Exchange traded really slow today. As soon as the bell went off, I realized that the YM and the NQ’s were just pretty much nowhere to be found and it could be like this for the rest of the week. The good thing is that tomorrow is Friday and that should put a merciful end to what was a less than stellar week.

I traded the NQ’s and had a little bit of luck buying and selling. There was a nice little move to the upside but I couldn’t capitalize on it with size due to the evaporative environment of the market. I went in with less than half the risk capital that I usually do and my results mirrored it. Because of this, my commissions (strangely) took a big bite into my profits thereby rendering the day almost useless. I traded Orange Juice and that yielded me a little bit of something but not enough really for me to be satisfied. It was just an overall blah kind of day.

I had stuff to get to almost immediately after trading which is why I couldn’t really blog as soon as I wanted to. However, I am still thankful that I didn’t end up destroying my PnL. Hopefully tomorrow will be a better day but I am glad to have had an opportunity to trade today. Now if only those millions of dollars would start showing up, I’d definitely have a much better end to the week.