Order flow levels across major pairs.

Orders in the market seen across major pairs

  • Sell orders on NZDUSD on 0.6480/90 and 0.6360/70
  • Sell orders on AUDUSD at 0.6800/10 and 0.6910/20
  • Sell orders on EURJPY at 120.40/50, 118.70/80

and buy orders at 116.20/10

  • Sell orders on USDJPY at 108.70/80, 108.30/40

and buy orders at  106.00/90 and 105.00/90

Sell orders on GBPUSD at 1.2680/90 and 1.2530/40

and buy orders at 1.2000/90

  • Sell orders  on EURUSD at 1.1010/20

Avoiding Punishment is the mistake-Reminiscences of a Stock Operator

This chapter gives several examples of different peoples method of placing their trades, and uncovers the difficulties that many people have in following a trading method. Much of the difficulties lie in the behavior pattern of avoiding punishment. A speculator may make mistake and know that he is making them, but not why. He simple calls himself names and lets it go at that. 

Mistakes are always around if you want to make a fool of yourself. Mistakes are part of the human condition, and should not cause lost sleep. But being wrong – not taking the loss – that is what does the damage to the pocketbook and to the soul.  

Trading Commodities rather than stocks partakes more of the nature of a commercial venture than trading in stocks does. Commodities are governed by one law in the long run, supply and demand.  Fundamental information is more concrete than in Stocks, where the investor must guess about many influences.  

Technical analysis, or tape reading, works exactly the same for stocks as for cotton or wheat or corn or oats. Still, the average trader from Missouri everywhere will risk half his fortune in the stock market with less reflection than he devotes to the selection of a car. Today the popular analogy is that most people spend more time planning their vacation than they spend planning for their retirement.   (more…)

15 Points For Traders

1. Don’t be a tradeaholic
2. You trade to make money – not for fun, games, or to escape boredom
3. Never add to a bad trade
If you have a specific strategy which includes adding to a trade which has gone against you, that’s one thing. Just “averaging down” is usually a bad play.
4. Once you have a profit on a trade, never let it turn into a loss
This can be a really good plan for psychology purposes, but it may or may not be appropriate for the type of strategy/system you employ.
5. No hoping, no wishing, no would’ve, no opinions, no should’ve
It’s hard not to second-guess, and reviewing thinking after the fact is part of the learning process, but never do it in trade.
6. Don’t be a one way trader – be flexible, opportunities on both sides
More opportunities doesn’t necessarily mean better trading. Some systems, markets, and/or traders are just better one-way only.
7. Know your risk on each trade. Trade with stops to limit losses
Definitely yes on the first part. The second part is up for debate in some ways.
8. Look for 3-1 profit objective trade
Totally disagree. This can’t be taken in isolation. You can have fantastic results with a smaller R/R ratio. It depends on your system’s or method’s win %.
9. When initiating a trade, always get your price (use a limit order)
Depends on your system. (more…)


1. Amount of capital to use: Divide your capital into 10 equal parts and never risk more than one-tenth of your capital on any one trade.
2. Use stop loss orders. Always protect a trade.
3. Never overtrade. This would be violating your capital rules.
4. Never let a profit run into a loss. After you once have a profit raise your stop loss order so that you will have no loss of capital.
5. Do not buck the trend. Never buy or sell if you are not sure of the trend according to your charts and rules.
6. When in doubt, get out and don’t get in when in doubt.
7. Trade only in active markets. Keep out of slow, dead ones.
8. Equal distribution of risk. Trade in two or three different commodities if possible. Avoid tying up all your capital in any one commodity.
9. Never limit your orders or fix a buying or selling price.
10. Don’t close your trades without a good reason. Follow up with a stop loss order to protect your profits.
11. Accumulate a surplus. After you have made a series of successful trades, put some money into a surplus account to be used only in emergency or in times of panic.
12. Never buy or sell just to get a scalping profit.
13. Never average a loss. This is one of the worst mistakes a trader can make.
14. Never get out of the market just because you have lost patience or get into the market because you are anxious from waiting.
15. Avoid taking small profits and big losses.
16. Never cancel a stop loss order after you have placed it at the time you make a trade.
17. Avoid getting in and out of the market too often.
18. Be just as willing to sell short as you are to buy. Let your object be to keep with the trend and make money.
19. Never buy just because the price of a commodity is low or sell short just because the price is high.
20. Be careful about pyramiding at the wrong time. Wait until the commodity is very active and has crossed resistance levels before buying more, and until it has broken out of the zone of distribution before selling more.
21. Select the commodities that show strong uptrend to pyramid on the buying side and the ones that show definite downtrend to sell short.
22. Never hedge. If you are long one commodity and it starts to go down, do not sell another commodity short to hedge it. Get out at the market: Take your loss and wait for another opportunity.
23. Never change your position in the market without a good reason. When you make a trade, let it be for some good reason, or according to some definite rule; then do not get out without a definite indication of a change in trend.
24. Avoid increasing your trading after a long period of success or a period of profitable trades.

External and Internal rules for Traders

Assuming you use rules in your trading, here’s an exercise that can bring new insight into analyzing your trade metrics. The next time you review your trade history (you do review it, right?) focus on the rules of the trade. Specifically, ask yourself how you responded to the rules.

For this exercise we will use two types of rules—external and internal. An example of an external rule would be one generated from your trading system. Let’s use a simple moving average cross as a buy order. An example of an internal rule would be discretionary in nature. Usually we can find these in statements like “I told myself that I’d trade smaller ahead of my vacation so I wouldn’t have to worry about positions and truly relax.”

Take a piece of paper and divide it into two columns; one for external and one for internal. Now process your prior trades to see which types of rule you followed and didn’t follow. Take it a step further to see which type of rule had larger profits or losses over time. See if there’s a correlation between length of trade and type of rule. Perhaps there’s a common thread between losing trades and not following your internal rules. If so, this would suggest a lack of discipline on your part which can be fixed by creating an external rule to avoid or lessen losses in the future. Have fun with the exercise but approach it with the intent to improve your trading. (more…)

Art Huprich’s Market Truisms and Axioms

Raymond James’ P. Arthur Huprich published a terrific list of rules at year’s end. Other than commandment #1, they are in no particular order:

• Commandment #1: “Thou Shall Not Trade Against the Trend.”

• Portfolios heavy with underperforming stocks rarely outperform the stock market!

• There is nothing new on Wall Street. There can’t be because speculation is as old as the hills. Whatever happens in the stock market today has happened before and will happen again, mostly due to human nature.

• Sell when you can, not when you have to.

• Bulls make money, bears make money, and “pigs” get slaughtered.

• We can’t control the stock market. The very best we can do is to try to understand what the stock market is trying to tell us.

• Understanding mass psychology is just as important as understanding fundamentals and economics.

• Learn to take losses quickly, don’t expect to be right all the time, and learn from your mistakes.

• Don’t think you can consistently buy at the bottom or sell at the top. This can rarely be consistently done.

• When trading, remain objective. Don’t have a preconceived idea or prejudice. Said another way, “the great names in Trading all have the same trait: An ability to shift on a dime when the shifting time comes.”

• Any dead fish can go with the flow. Yet, it takes a strong fish to swim against the flow. In other words, what seems “hard” at the time is usually, over time, right.

• Even the best looking chart can fall apart for no apparent reason. Thus, never fall in love with a position but instead remain vigilant in managing risk and expectations. Use volume as a confirming guidepost.

• When trading, if a stock doesn’t perform as expected within a short time period, either close it out or tighten your stop-loss point.

• As long as a stock is acting right and the market is “in-gear,” don’t be in a hurry to take a profit on the whole positions. Scale out instead.

• Never let a profitable trade turn into a loss, and never let an initial trading position turn into a long-term one because it is at a loss.

• Don’t buy a stock simply because it has had a big decline from its high and is now a “better value;” wait for the market to recognize “value” first.

• Don’t average trading losses, meaning don’t put “good” money after “bad.” Adding to a losing position will lead to ruin. Ask the Nobel Laureates of Long-Term Capital Management.

• Human emotion is a big enemy of the average investor and trader. Be patient and unemotional. There are periods where traders don’t need to trade.

• Wishful thinking can be detrimental to your financial wealth.

• Don’t make investment or trading decisions based on tips. Tips are something you leave for good service.

• Where there is smoke, there is fire, or there is never just one cockroach: In other words, bad news is usually not a one-time event, more usually follows.

• Realize that a loss in the stock market is part of the investment process. The key is not letting it turn into a big one as this could devastate a portfolio.

• Said another way, “It’s not the ones that you sell that keep going up that matter. It’s the one that you don’t sell that keeps going down that does.

The table below depicts the percentage gain necessary to get back even, after a certain percentage loss. (more…)

How To Overcome A Market Bias

Market direction is simply the way the market is moving at any given time during the day, and can change at any moment. Market direction is based on the number of trades that take place at certain prices, no more no less. That is why when you think you have the direction called, the markets change and move in a new direction. 
When a trader remains focused on what is happening, they remain focused on their own trades without wasting energy trying to understand why. The market will move where the market will move, one thing is for sure, the market does not need to have a rational reason why it is moving in a direction. Overcoming the need to rationalize a reason behind a market direction will serve to support a stronger trading plan. 

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