Trade Aptitude

Results of Wednesday’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points: Neither trade suggestion triggered on another narrow range day. 

Today’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points (consider wider stops and less size in fast moving markets): 

Buy 4431.25 stop 4427.25. Short 4482.75 stop 4486.50.

The World Sentiment Index: (+100/-100) falls from -57 to -79 with all major world markets extended their Bearish tone from yesterday. 

Catalysts: OPEC meetings (lowering production). ADP Employment Report @ 8:15. Jobless Claims @ 8:30. ISM Services PMI @ 10:00. Crude Oil Inventories @ 11:00. 

Quick Tip: Expectations 

“What are you struggling with?” was the question I asked a group of traders. One woman said she had expectation challenges. She felt she needed to acknowledge that every trade cannot be a home run, or “10 to 1” as she phrased it. 

I respect her self-awareness. Expectations is not a commonly voiced...

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Trade Aptitude

Results of Monday’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points: Neither trade suggestion triggered on a narrow range short-session day. 

Today’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points (consider wider stops and less size in fast moving markets): 

Buy 4431.25 stop 4427.25. Short 4504.50 stop 4509.25.

The World Sentiment Index: (+100/-100) PLUMMETS from +50 to -57 with all major world markets Bearish. 

Catalysts: OPEC meetings (lowering production). FOMC Minutes @ 14:00.  

Quick Tip: Time Stops

Having a dollar stop loss on trades is common and advisable. What about a time stop? 

Entering a trade ties up your capital. The ideal result would be an instantaneous win but that rarely happens. The worst result, other than a loss, would be a trade that doesn’t move much at all and is open for a long period of time. You could be using that capital for better opportunities. 

Determining your time stop...

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Trade Aptitude

Results of Thursday’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points: Shorting 4471.00 stopped out. Buying the breakout ran for 21.50 points. 

Today’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points (consider wider stops and less size in fast moving markets): 

Buy 4431.25 stop 4427.25. Short 4521.25 stop 4524.75.

The World Sentiment Index: (+100/-100) rises from +43 to +50 with Asia very Bullish and the west neutral. 

Catalysts: Final S&P Global MFG PMI @ 9:45. ISM MFG PMI & Construction Spending @ 10:00.  Short session today. 

Quick Tip: Decide Quickly?

Predictions and forecasts. Are they helpful in your trading or not? 

You could argue that the only thing that matters is price action in present time. Fair argument. 

But are you prepared for what price action is suggesting? Are you using the correct strategy for the current market conditions? Will today be a trending or range-bound day? 

It’s helpful to...

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Trade Aptitude

Results of Thursday’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points: Buying 4412.50 caught the bottom of the session and ran for 21.75 points to the next level (unpublished) which ran for 16.25 points. Feel better about the win by donating a slice to my preferred charity, the Alzheimer’s Association. Click here.

Today’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points (consider wider stops and less size in fast moving markets): 

Buy 4431.25 stop 4427.25. Short 4471.00 stop 4476.75.

The World Sentiment Index: (+100/-100) jumps from Zero to +43 in a mostly Bullish world with volatility picking up. 

Catalysts: Core PCE Price Index (Fed’s primary inflation measure), Personal Income & Spending @ 8:30. Chicago PMI @ 9:45. Revised UM Consumer Sentiment @ 10:00.  

Quick Tip: Diversify 

Yesterday’s Volume Profile levels crushed it picking both the top and bottom of the session for the second time in a...

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Trade Aptitude

Results of Wednesday’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points: Neither trade suggestion triggered in a narrow range day. 

Today’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points (consider wider stops and less size in fast moving markets): 

Buy 4412.50 stop 4407.50. Short 4471.00 stop 4476.75.

The World Sentiment Index: (+100/-100) drops from +29 to Zero in a world of mixed sentiment and low volatility. 

Catalysts: Powell spoke @ 2:30 AM ET, bullish reaction. GDP & Jobless Claims @ 8:30. Pending Home Sales @ 10:00.  Micron paints rosy future and pumps up chip sector. Wall Street banks pass stress test.  

Quick Tip: Think Risk First

You might be thinking, "Aren't we trading for the profits?" Yes, however, in the long term a well-structured risk management plan should outweigh the short-term profits you stand to gain.

Why? Trading is a marathon, not a sprint. Your goal is not just to gain high returns in the short...

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Trade Aptitude

Results of Tuesday’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points: Shorting 4407.50 stopped out. 

Today’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points (consider wider stops and less size in fast moving markets): 

Buy 4387.00 stop 4382.25. Short 4434.25 stop 4438.50.

The World Sentiment Index: (+100/-100) rises from +21 to +29 in a world of mixed sentiment and low volatility. 

Catalysts: International Trade @8:30. Powell speaks @ 9:30. Crude Oil Inventories @ 10:30. 

Quick Tip: Change Your Mind

Part of your morning routine should be researching the markets you trade for trends, volatility, and catalysts in the upcoming session. You want context. 

The other day all the evidence pointed to a down S&P. I was convinced short was the first signal our strategies would offer. The market opened and strong buying momentum emerged. The first signal offered was long and without further consideration I took the trade. Small winner...

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Trade Aptitude

Results of Monday’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points: Neither suggested trade triggered. The same levels remain on the chart. 

Today’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points (consider wider stops and less size in fast moving markets): 

Buy 4357.50 stop 4353.25. Short 4407.50 stop 4410.75. 

The World Sentiment Index: (+100/-100) rises from -50 to +21 in a world of mixed sentiment and low volatility. 

Catalysts: Durable Goods @8:30. Home Price Index @ 9:00. Consumer Confidence, New Home Sales & Richmond MFG Index @ 10:00. 

Quick Tip: 5 Fears

I follow a high-performance coach, Brendon Burchard, and his message yesterday was about “The 4 Types of Fear.” 

In trading, we have 5 types of fear! Recognizing you’re susceptible to them is the first step to a solution. 

Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) – you can’t tolerate watching a winning trade from the sidelines. This breeds...

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Trade Aptitude

Results of Friday’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points: Buying 4386.75 picked the bottom of the session and bounced 4 times running for 20.75 points to the next level. Feel better about the win by donating a slice to my preferred charity, the Alzheimer’s Association. Click here.

Today’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points (consider wider stops and less size in fast moving markets): 

Buy 4357.50 stop 4353.25. Short 4407.50 stop 4410.75. 

The World Sentiment Index: (+100/-100) rises from -71 to -50 with most major world markets Bearish. 

Catalysts: Nothing on the economic calendar. Maybe Wagner will change its mind again and head back to Moscow.  

Quick Tip: Trade Analysis

What a day! Any time your reversal strategy picks the top and the bottom you gotta feel confident in your research and plan. 

The high-volume level at 4386.75 is what we call a “tertiary” level....

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Trade Aptitude

Results of Thursday’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points: Neither suggested trade triggered. Both remain on the chart for today.

Today’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points (consider wider stops and less size in fast moving markets): 

Buy 4386.75 stop 4382.00. Short 4434.25 stop 4489.50. 

The World Sentiment Index: (+100/-100) PLUMMETS rises from -79 to -71 with all major world markets firmly Bearish. 

Catalysts: PMI MFG/Services Flash @ 9:45. 

Quick Tip: Your Unsatisfied Need.

To succeed in trading (actually, anything in life) you must be highly motivated. 

Why? Because there will always be setbacks, frustrations, losses, and failures. If you’re not motivated you won’t persist. You’ll quit and carry that psychological “loss” with you. Collect enough of those and you’ll be miserable. 

The answer is to get and stay motivated. 

But how? Find your unsatisfied need. You...

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Trade Aptitude

Results of Wednesday’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points: Neither suggested trade triggered during a narrow range session. 

Today’s Best S&P Futures Turning Points (consider wider stops and less size in fast moving markets): 

Buy 4386.75 stop 4382.00. Short 4434.25 stop 4489.50. 

The World Sentiment Index: (+100/-100) PLUMMETS from -14 to -79 with all major world markets firmly Bearish. 

Catalysts: Jobless Claims @ 8:30. Existing Home Sales & Fed Chair Powell testifies to House Financial Services Committee @ 10:00. Crude Oil Inventories @ 11:00. 

Quick Tip: Disqualifying 

Traditional work (your job) makes becoming a winning trader difficult. Not because of the time devotion, but because it instills a belief that is NOT helpful in trading. 

What is it? Doing something. Can you imagine if you were caught doing nothing and told the boss “Now is not a good time to be working on...

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