Options Support Coming Soon – Sign Up to Learn More

February 16th, 2011

We’re hard at work adding support for options in StockTickr. If you’re an options trader and want to use StockTickr to improve your trading, sign up here to be notified when it will be ready.

Rest assured that the options trading journal will be:

  • Easy to use
  • Require minimal manual data entry
  • Will help you make more money with your trading

Sign up here and be notified immediately when it’s ready.

The New StockTickr Yearly View

February 7th, 2011

We’ve just added a new calendar view into StockTickr.  You can view multiple years worth of trading on a single page. Notice the colors – the darker green the day is the more profitable that day was relative to other days and the same is true for losing days.

Clicking on the day of the month takes you right to the trading journal for that day. There is a link on the month name that takes you to a monthly calendar view showing details of each day.

Sign up now to become a better trader!

Here’s a screenshot:

Calendar Year View

Introducing StockTickr Goals

December 14th, 2010

Traders need to be always looking for ways to improve their trading. If you’re not regularly trying to get better, then you’ll stagnate and you’ll get worse. Many traders make mistakes – often the same mistakes over and over. (I know I do).

This is why we created StockTickr Goals. It’s a way to create trading goals for yourself, assign them to certain days, and then hold yourself accountable. It’s an easy way to create a feedback loop so you can improve your trading over time.

It’s included with the already free StockTickr Basic accounts and also with the StockTickr Pro service. Get started now and take your trading to the next level.

goals image

Learn more about StockTickr Goals here.

Mathematically Optimal but Psychologically Wrong

November 2nd, 2010

Here’s a good article that relates quite a bit to trading. John Cook discusses debt consolidation and the debt-snowball strategy. His point is that the even though it’s mathematically optimal to tackle higher interest rate debt first, in practice it’s more practical to tackle the smaller debt first.

There are a lot of parallels to trading with this. A good example is scaling out of trades. In most every strategy I’ve come across (and all that I’ve traded), the mathematically optimal strategy is to not scale out of trades but to keep your position until a stop or a target is hit.

In real life though this is often difficult to do. It only takes a couple trades where your target is oh-so-close to being hit and then ends up stopping out to see that scaling out could provide some psychological relief.

Another good example is using an optimal position size for your trades. Depending on your account size the optimal position size for your trading strategy might result in some really large drawdowns to weather. You have to take into account the psychological element – your theoretical backtest doesn’t care that it’s difficult to trade through drawdowns. 😉

StockTickr Announces the Sterling Trading Bot

October 6th, 2010

After several weeks of beta testing, the StockTickr Sterling Automated Trading Robot is ready for action!

This robot will let you automate your trading through the Sterling trading platform using your Trade-Ideas trading strategies. You have full control over your trading strategies and can configure your trading instructions in a number of ways.

  • Absolutely the easiest way to start automated trading – no coding required!
  • Full control over what gets traded through the robot.
  • Automatically execute one or many trading strategies.
  • Include a variety of exit orders including stop loss, time stops, trailing stops, and targets.
  • Set a maximum number of orders to be sent per strategy.
  • Extensive position sizing capabilities.
  • Automatic performance analysis and journaling through StockTickr.
  • Much, much more.

This software lets you get the most out of your trading by combining the real time scanning from Trade-Ideas, the advanced performance analysis of StockTickr, and Sterling’s robust and fast execution platform.

There’s a free trial so get started now.

Reminder – Free Webinar Tonight with MB Trading

September 28th, 2010

We’ll be doing a free webinar with MB Trading tonight Tuesday, September 28th at 8PM ET. You’ll see some real life examples of how traders like you have been able to improve their trading and become more consistent in the markets. No matter what type of trading you do, you’ll be able to leave the webinar with some concrete information that you can apply to your own trading.

It’s free! Signup now.

In the webinar we’ll discuss these topics and take your questions:

  • Learn the easiest way to keep track of your trades
  • How to determine what works across a large number of your trades
  • Use StockTickr’s reports to see where you’re trading the best
  • Use backtesting to run simulations and what-if scenarios of the trades you took
  • Categorize your trades by strategy and other factors
  • Much, much more

This webinar promises to be well worth your time. Signup now.

Support for Forex Added and a Free Webinar with MB Trading

September 23rd, 2010

We’ve recently added support for over 27 Forex currency pairs on StockTickr. So if you trade Forex then you can now use StockTickr to track your performance and become a better trader. Sign up now and take a free trial.

Learn more about improving your trading with StockTickr in a free webinar scheduled for next Tuesday, September 28th at 8PM ET. The webinar is sponsored by MB Trading. You can sign up here.

StockTickr provides:

  • Trade Charting – Analyze your trades on charts with your entry, exit, and stop price automatically plotted right on the chart allowing you to quickly review dozens of trades by flipping through charts and identifying new patterns.
  • Dozens of Reports – Access to easy to use reports that show how you can take your trading to the next level, for example by changing how you take profits or manage stops.
  • Backtesting – Run simulations and what-if scenarios to see how you can improve your trading. Use the backtester to help you answer questions such as: would you be better of scaling out of trades? Or, would you be better off using a target across your trades?
  • Categorize with Tags – Use tags to classify your trades and view reports and charts for subsets of your trades. Now you can easily see performance across different types of strategies you are trading and identify the most promising ones.
  • Automated Trading, Graphs, and much, much more.

How I Look at Money Management

September 13th, 2010

As I’ve increased my trading size over the years, I’ve thought more about money management and the best way to approach it. You can make money management as complicated an issue as you want to, but as with most aspects of trading, simpler is often better.

As I decide how much to increase my trading size, the main question I ask myself is:

How much am I willing to lose in a single day?

That’s really what it boils down to. You are going to have to tolerate big down days to have the big up days so the question really is how much heat are you able and willing to bear to ensure that you catch the profitable days?

If you don’t have a good idea about how much it’s possible for you to lose in whatever timeframe you’re trading in, then you should probably do a little more research until you have that answer. That’s because one day you will lose that much money (and maybe more with slippage) and when the next trade comes along it’s easy to second guess yourself and screw something up.

5 Ways a Trading Journal Can Improve Your Trading

April 14th, 2010

Most traders, from beginners to professionals, know that keeping a trading journal is an important aspect of trading as a serious endeavor or career. Keeping a trading journal however takes effort and is all too easy to just brush aside and ignore while focusing on other areas in your trading. In this list I offer some key reasons I use to remind myself why maintaining a trading journal is worth the effort.

  1. Accountability – when you keep track of your trades diligently, noting what reasons you had for taking them and how they turned out helps keep you accountable to the trades you’re taking as well as how you’re managing them.
  2. A finger on performance – understanding how your methodology performs and monitoring its expectancy, win rates, and other parameters such as average winners and losers size can help tell you when things are either working really well and you should press your edge or when markets conditioned changed and you need to scale down or re-evaluate your edge.
  3. Research tool – A trading journal can also be an excellent research tool that helps you improve your edge. This can be achieved in several ways, one of them is when you tag your trades and keep track of different variables like market sentiment, candles formations, your own state of mind, or any other variable you can then look for relationships between your performance and those variables. There are many times where I’ve discovered that some trades should be skipped and others traded with larger size as a result of researching my trading journal.
  4. Self coaching – Aside from analyzing performance and quantitative data you may also want to keep track of your overall development progress as a trader, what habits are you trying to change, what goals are you setting for yourself and how are you doing in terms of achieving them. Without monitoring and tracking it becomes difficult to keep focus on those goals and all too easy to slip into bad habits again.
  5. Keeping things in perspective – We’ve all been there, you’re having a really good week or a really bad week, the impact of this type of unusual performance can play havoc on our heads. It is human nature to put more weight on recent events than on statistics of the past 6 months or even years. A trading journal can help re-align our thoughts, expectations and overall mental state by showing us visually how the last bit of performance compares to our longer term track record.

This list of points isn’t revolutionary, but revisiting it helps remind me of why I’m keeping a trading log and how it helped me improve my trading over the years. Hopefully others will find some of these points useful as well.

My Daily Trading Radar – How To Use It

April 7th, 2010

As some of you have noticed I post my daily trading radar on Twitter each day that I trade. Since I started posting it I’ve gotten a lot of feedback and questions on how I generate my list and what exactly it is and how I use it. This post is an attempt to answer some of those questions.

How is the list generated?

I use two tools to generate my daily trading list. One is Trade-Ideas and their scanner product. I have a couple different scans that I use to identify candidates that I might trade. The other scanner I use is the scanner that is included in Interactive Broker’s Trader Workstation. I take the output from my scans and manually filter the list removing stocks that I know I will not trade (for example, buyouts often appear and have to be manually removed).

How do you determine what goes on your trading radar?

Through trading, backtesting, and using my trading journal I know what characteristics of stocks make it most likely for this particular trading system to be most profitable. Of course your mileage may vary.

Are you looking long or short for the stocks on your radar?

In general, I’m looking to trade with the trend. That is not always the case but mostly it is. So if a stock is gapping up I’d be looking long and if a stock is gapping down I’d be looking short.

Do you trade everything on your radar?

No, if a candidate produces a setup then I will trade it otherwise I won’t. Some days there are no setups and other days every stock will setup although both of those cases are pretty rare.

How can I use the trading radar you generate each day?

However you’d like. You are welcome to somehow include it in your routine or completely ignore it. If you do use it somehow, I’d love to hear about it. You can contact me on Twitter or here.

Will you post which trades you actually took?

No. It’s not that I care that much about telling people what trades I took, it’s that it would take too much time to post it.

What time do you try to post the trading radar by?

I usually try to post the list to Twitter by 9:50, sometimes sooner sometimes later. I might try to automate the postings at some point.

It’s 9:55 and I don’t see the list yet. Are you there?

Probably not. I take days off every now and then. 😉

I have a question that you didn’t answer.

Feel free to contact me or leave it in the comments below and I’ll answer it.

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