Monday, March 28, 2011

The Daily Note - Top That!

As traders I think we compete more with ourselves than with other traders. Maybe not at first, but as we become more assured and more experienced with our success. So I realized as I thought to myself: "How do I top that?" coming off one of the best weeks of charts and plays.

The early game that some traders play is to try and outdo one another in quantity, quality in some imaginary contest. This can be good because it allows for emulation which is a good way to learn many things in life; but it is detremental when the competition becomes more important than the trade.

I prefer to look at a good trader to learn from, not to outdo. You can learn a lot by looking at trades through different eyes. Charts allow you to do that. However, if the charts confuse rather than help, ask yourself what you are missing, and then, if still stumped, ask the creator of that chart. Most chartists are willing to share their craft, otherwise, they would not post them for all to see.

By asking yourself what you are learning from the many charts that chartists who post on the web, StockTwits especially, you will soon find ones to follow who will teach you, even if silently. However, if you are looking to be just told without doing your homework, you are really not learning to trade or to read a chart, but only to follow. In other words, you become dependent on someone else telling you what to do and when.

Your willingness to chart your own trades and then compare them to someone else, will help you to become the good trader you are meant to be. I prefer to teach, therefore, I leave a bit of mystery in my charts for that reason. Guiding you by giving clues may help you see the chart with fresh eyes, teach you to find those levels that will break/make the trade, and hopefully encourage you to try to top that on your own.

So, how am I doing?
Happy Trading, Living and Learning

The Daily Pick - DRYS a pre-earnings chart

©DayTrading with Anni 2011 All Rights Reserved

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

The Daily Note - You Can't Finish What You Don't Start

How can you finish what you haven't started? If you do not set a goal in your life, how do you know when you've arrived, achieved, excelled? Whether you realize it or not, you actually set goals every day of your life. Things like: Get up time ____, Get to work time ___, Eat, drink, be merry, watch a show, go to the gym etc. are all daily goals. When you have done them, you finish them and you achieved them. You may even have overachieved them as in, too many drinks or excelled in them as in, an extra 15min at the gym. Realize it or not you complete many goals every day.

So why do many people have a tough time setting goals that go beyond the routine? Do they think they don't need it or perhaps they have low self esteem and do not wish to feel pressure or worry about failure? If you are one of them, maybe you don't realize that without goals, you can't have achievement ergo self-esteem suffers and a negative routine continues. Let me ask it this way; do you want to set a goal of: "Today, I will lose _____."? That is what you are doing by not setting a goal. The unconscious mind still sets goals according to its thinking and negative is as much a goal as a positive one.

A conscious positive goal is much more powerful than an unconscious goal but without setting a goal you cannot start the task.  Therefore, positive goals are as important in your daily routine as they are for your life.

So, if your trading is not quite what you'd like it to be I suggest that not setting positive goals as being a possible reason.

Try this instead:
  • Each day set a "total gain" goal. Make it just a bit out of reach of your last day. If the last day gain was negative, make the goal a positive amount. Write it on a post-it.
  • Plan each trade before the day begins with a goal in mind. Write down each on a post it.
  • Paste your post-its on your desktop just in view.
  • Vow only to focus on your post it trades and goals for the trading day.
  • When a goal is achieved, remove the post it.
  • When you have no post its left, your goals are achieved, your trading day is done.
  • Celebrate

Now,  you have finished what you've started, rather than not starting at all.

Happy Trading, Living and Winning

The Daily Pick - Continued pattern play NFLX

©DayTrading with Anni 2011 All Rights Reserved

Monday, March 21, 2011

The Daily Note - Work Smart Trades

I work hard which will probably never change, but along with working hard, we all have to learn to work smart. It's true in any market situation, and no more than now. Working smart does not mean that you do shortcuts or that you work less, although it may lead to it, in a smart way. Working smart means figuring out what works for you and doing it over and over again.

Smart means knowing which strategy works best for your style. The one that no matter what the market does, you know how to trade. Some days less, other days more but it's one that you know will be successful a high majority of the time. You also have to know which symbols work best with your strategy and it's good to have a basket of them. I call mine "The Usual Suspects"

By tracking your trades, you can find out which stocks work best with your best strategy. Keep the daily log on each symbol separately and see which ones perform best on the average for you.
Weed out the ones that do not trade well daily first, then weed out the ones that work in the lower percentage of the time with a minimum of 60% preferably 70+% success.

Finally, remember that smart does not replace practice. Practice them until your percentage of success with each improves to be above 80% preferably to 90+%; by which time you're basket will be weeded down to about five traders.

Your Smart Trades can be the starters of your day or the ones you go to when others are not doing well. The ones that will boost your success and your confidence. The ones that allow you to - Work Smart Trade - them well.

Happy Trading, Living and Dancing

The Daily Pick - AAPL

©DayTrading with Anni 2011 All Rights Reserved

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Daily Note - Everybody Knows

As a Daytrader, I can choose what I trade everyday and contrary to what may come to mind, it's not to take advantage of others' misfortune. I am reminded that somehow making gains deliberately will not make me feel good. Everybody knows that disasters and accidents happen.

As human beings we're pray for those affected and donate goods and money in order to help them out. We recognize that it's a time of need and we need to lend a hand. But somehow traders, financial managers, financial bloggers around the globe salivate at the thought of the opportunities when disaster hits. We are not vultures or hyenas who really do a better service since they only pick on the dead. We are worse. We are at our total greed level. Teeth bared and ready for the attack on the helpless. But consider where the money comes from for the companies, countries targeted for such bone picking. Investors & taxpayers like ourselves. Also consider that many people have counted on that money to make their future better. But not we. We just want the glory of the kill and the temporary gain that we may lose on the next trade. Will I make that trade that breaks someones back and spirals their portfolio to zero? Does that make you feel uncomfortable? I hope so.

I know there's some exaggeration in what I write, but I believe we are doing an injustice toward people whose only wish after a disaster is to live. Many have lost everything. Do they need to lose their investment also?

It's a time when people need to come together and many of you know, who have been following my blog and tweets, know that I don't advocate such trades out of respect and principal. In other words, I don't short companies that are on the receiving end of an accident or disaster. I believe there is plenty of ways to play without making things worse.

In you hurry to capitalize on the coming events, take into consideration that Japanese firms need our support to continue to service and help their customers, rebuild their communities and regain their standing in order to save their investors' funds. Remember that Wall St. has been looked upon as greedy; well, we now have choice to not partake in that greed. Think of it as a donation which I'm sure you'll be happy to do in the days to come. Besides, it's not a real donation if you take with one hand and give with the other into the same pot. Think about how you'd feel being there.

Happy trading, living and being thankful

The Daily Pick - DJIA

©DayTrading with Anni 2011 All Rights Reserved

Sunday, March 13, 2011

the Daily Note - Take Each Day

Day trading is a choice. Perhaps there are more sane reasons not to become a day trader than there are in favor of it. Reasons are all sound. We all choose day trading perhaps for totally different ones.

I am reminded once again today about my reasons, and one in particular which I keep at the top of my list: Disasters both Natural or Political. I should write it the other way around because my political reasons come on top, but natural reasons are also compelling, and let's just say I lived through both.

I was reminded lately due to the turmoil in our country, in the Middle East, and economic threats locally and globally. Now, also the events of this past week and today in Japan. The earthquake and ensuing disasters, confirm my reasons, once again, in favor of day trading.

Happy Trading, Living and Praying

The Daily Pick - MTZ

©DayTrading with Anni 2011 All Rights Reserved

Monday, March 7, 2011

The Daily Note - Revealed: A Naked Chart

You many wonder why anyone would start out with a naked chart but then I'd say innocents, that's why. Simply put, all is better revealed. Presenting, the Dow Jones Industrial chart: DJI or DJIA

Happy Trading, Living and Dancing

The Daily Pick - DJIA (See Above)
©DayTrading with Anni 2011 All Rights Reserved

Thursday, March 3, 2011

The Daily Note - Is Priceline Priceless?

We've all seen the ads for Master Card, but this is not about $MA this is about Priceline or PCLN for traders.

It has been nothing short of miraculous in its rise in price and as I've mentioned at times, my skepticism had to be erased quickly in order for me to get on its right side back around the $150 price. My skepticism was based on the history of Travelzoo or TZOO in 2004/2005 but PCLN is not Travelzoo either.

Having a background in the travel business I had to analyze from experience what it meant. After all, in my days bargain hunters were college students wanting to have a final fling at "pot spots" around the world before donning business suits. I also had to look at Travelocity and it's evolution from the days of SABRE. It was the first to offer multiple bargain searches for best fares, but Priceline took it a step further and the world liked what they got.

Priceline was not the first bidding site for travel either, there were some others, most of which I've forgotten about but also most of which modeled their sites after eBay. This was different, here you had the choice albeit a blind one. It was all blind bidding at first and it was like buying a pig-in-a-poke. I was doing eBay then and was fascinated, but did not think it would fly. There was Cheap Tickets and other sites that were consolidated sellers of available airline seats and you knew what you were getting. But Priceline continued its "hide and seek" style that paid off enough customers to make it worth while for those willing to risk. Soon enough, however, Priceline realized that not everyone was going to bid for a bargain and introduced it's tier style selling. Bid for less or pay more for sure. Which, along with the expansion into hotels and rental cars was enough for notice.

Many think that the reason Priceline made it big was because of William Shatner. Actually Shatner was on with Priceline in its early days, but after the .com bubble burst, Priceline had to hang in, shed some baggage to become solely a travel site, and it was due to that along with bringing back Shatner and a new campaign that propelled Priceline into the stratosphere.

Priceline first turned the corner in 2007/2008 hitting $145 but markets turned then, and it too suffered the hit once again, yet, with the recession comes another dilemma: People still want to travel and the travel industry still wants to sell. The harder the economy the more travel bargains are to be found. It was perfect for Priceline; inventory increased and so did the travel bargain hunters. For the travel industry it was a match made in heaven and the rest is history, until we look at it yet again today.

Priceline has been running for two years now and with each peak it surprises us again. So, looking ahead, with new recession and world problems brewing I say the advantage will still be in the corner of bargain travel sellers until the population will be forced to stay at home due to a war or world economic collapse. And even then, people will want to travel.

Happy Trading, Living and Dancing

The Daily Pick - PCLN

©DayTrading with Anni 2011 All Rights Reserved

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

The Daily Note - When Caesar Falls

I do not recall ever having so much riding on one man, except MSFT in it's early days but even then not this much accolades or adoration.

AAPL as a company is good enough, but without Steve Jobs would it be riding so high? Not if you read the tape when he appears and watch when his life is in limbo. It's been a couple of years since first I thought he may need to slowly ween off his followers and separate himself from the product but even two years ago it was too late, and now even more so.

I don't think the reaction in the markets is as much merit driven as it is anticipation driven. I am speaking of the product when I say merit. There are people all over the world that hold AAPL products as status symbols and willing to pay the price. Like a LouisVuitton bag or a Rolex that screams success to all and known by name alone, AAPL too has taken a pedestal near them. Now, just holding the AAPL symbol is enough for a rise in price. (China loves these names as they can make billions off the copies)

There is just one difference however, a missing factor between them: The companies mentioned continue to flourish after their creator has long stepped down because they are followed by creators equal to the task and where Apple has yet to be really tested.

AAPL given it's history, barely survived the first time Steve Jobs and Stephen Wozniak stepped away. It took Steve Job's return to revive the company. The second time upon Steve Jobs' illness, the confidence in the company dived, and now, today, once again on a new product announcement, rather than soaring price of AAPL on the market due to the merit of the product went lagging until Steve Jobs showed up at the "fair".

I'm not the only one pointing to such obvious caution flags, yet it seems not to matter. What it demonstrates best however is that mobs can decide on who rules, deciding its excellence, merit or demerit, just because they like the deliverer of the message, and paying no attention to the longer term consequences or to what can happen when Caesar falls.

Happy Trading, Living and Dancing

P.S. Author has no present investment in Apple, day/swing trades it regularly, owns and uses an iTouch, has no animosity toward any of its products or its founders and wishes them no ill but only fair sailing and good health.

The Daily Pick - AAPL

©DayTrading with Anni 2011 All Rights Reserved