Thursday, April 2, 2009

Thursday Notes - Tip the Dealer

3:45pm Today reminded me of much of 2008 in that I was pretty awful trading Europe overnight, but learned a few lessons for the day and got ticked enough to both wipe out the entire Eurex loss by the U.S. open, while staying extremely focused throughout the U.S. session to clock in a highly efficient +$17K day by 2:30pm ET, after which I traded very lightly.

Most of the gains were by being long biased on several price & TICK pullbacks in the morning and early afternoon sessions given the tremendous TICK strength, and not getting wiggled in the slop.

Of course the fact that the market was trading along today's 5- and 15-minute channels in perfect trend & oscillation fashion (see charts; click to enlarge) helped today, which is like dealing me pocket Kings a few times, so I'll pass a few chips the market's way today.

Such movement and pace conditions are simply ideal for me, and you can see how the 5-minute trend played out, got stretched as noted on the higher 15-min chart, and then retraced back to the 15-minute support where the game began anew. My only regret was not holding a midday short and 2:25pm long longer (don't get me wrong, I got solid pieces), yet missing the larger swings were more than made up by scalping earlier sequences where it seemed I got every bottom and top of the moves.

Of course you don't get Kings every day, and many traders make the mistake of trying to trade day 2 like day 1 ... so keep in mind the 5 & 15 minute rhythms will likely be meaningless on Friday.

And while I gave a small amount back in the late session, I did well to recognize I was losing focus and ended only 5% off my equity high for the day (yea, I should have nailed the 3:02pm lower high, but my reflexes and brain were toast by then). Frankly, the last hour reminded me of one of "The Tao of Poker" rules that reminds us to back off when the game goes bad, whether it be a change in cards (patterns) or players (traders behind the patterns).

Of course, last Wednesday also came to mind where I wasn't particularly disciplined in the last hour.

And yes, I'm still dealing with the pinched nerve and am seeing doctor #3 tomorrow. At least days like today help take my mind off it for a bit. Don't worry, I'm a trader and won't rest until I find away around, over, or under that obstacle. As with trading patterns that don't suit our personal preference, this too shall pass.

Lastly, a reminder to reread "The Jazz Trader" post anytime we think about being critical of another trader's style or approach. Some recent commenters might do well to remind themselves there's no right or wrong in this business.

Only profits.

Don't forget jobs data comes out tomorrow morning.

Also, poker night tonight at this end as we kick off Q2. btw, I never could make up the final ground last quarter as I went all in with Pockets Kings last week and got two callers with A-K and A-Q. Yea, I know I had them crushed ... except a damn Ace came on the turn. One of only two outs in the deck ... go figure.


Unknown said...

Congrats on another great trading day. Do you use S&P Pit Noise (i.e S&P Futures Squawk Box Live Audio) when you trade?

Don Miller said...

Thomas -

Nope. Anything aside from a couple of charts and my brain would be information overload.


Unknown said...

maybe it's your posture/chair/arms on desk setup. try a radical change like the keyboard in ur lap for a day and the chair super high.

mp said...

my dad has a pinched nerve around his neck and is doing physcical therapy which is just stretches,exercise and it is helping him. nothing serious with his. I told him to go to the accupressurist all my family has seen for back problems. That accupressure really works for tissue/muscle problems

Lord Tedders said...


Grats on a good trading day. Its great that you mention that not every day can suit a trader's style perfectly.

I find it funny and sad how people love to attack your successes. Personally I'm inspired.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.


James Stollenwerck said...


From a fly on the wall third person posted you were going to not trade Europe in 2009 for balance. What's up? Are you pressing?

Don Miller said...

Hi James -

Not pressing at all, but I happen to be waking naturally earlier in the morning now (vs. the beginning of the year) and simply trade what I see.

And just like '08, my best days are after I get knocked around in the morning.

Some quarterbacks don't get into the game until getting hit hard a few times ... and such is likely how I'll always be wired.


naresh nambisan said...

hai don, i happened to get ur link from site....i am very much impressed with ur success and would like to know apart from moving averages and adx, what other indicator u there any link where u have already discussed all these??few charts on youtube or something like that would be really appreciated. i am from india and day trade indexes and stocks both..thx in advance...and keep up the good job...

Garen said...

I watched your latest video the other day. You might want to look into You need to sort threw all religious stuff and get to pure meditation. Religion was attached to it so yoga would sell better in the West. Wish you well. Garen.

Trader Kevin said...

I went all in with Pockets Kings last week and got two callers with A-K and A-Q. Yea, I know I had them crushed...except a damn Ace came on the turn. One of only two outs in the deck...go figure.

Please tell us the River was a Queen to bad beat Big Slick.

Trader Kevin said...


Do you use S&P Pit Noise (i.e S&P Futures Squawk Box Live Audio) when you trade?

Thomas, the pit is no longer relevant. All they're doing is hawking the screen and trying to pick off resting orders.