I’ve never got on with Ebay, personally. I think I’ve bought two items there over about the last fifteen years, and both times they never arrived. A one hundred percent failure rate caused me to lose confidence in the place. I prefer Amazon, even if it’s trendy to bash them these days for a multitude of reasons I won’t go into. Mrs Walsh, on the other hand, loves Ebay, and can regularly be found emptying the family coffers on the site.
Ebay is occasionally useful to me for one thing though — as a stock to trade. It popped up on my list on Friday, and provided me with this nice little short.
A classic entry, right out of the book, off-chart confirmation, and a couple of clear price targets made it a no brainer. I nearly exited the whole lot at the first one when it coincided with momentum dropping away, but reading the price suggested there was more to come, so I only took off half. As it happened it did indeed drop further, hitting the second target quickly once it got going. All of which added up to a $500+ profit in under half an hour. That’s a much better way to do ebay!
Here’s another quickie from Friday — CMCSA:
Nothing exciting, just another standard setup which yielded only a couple of hundred dollars. But they were stress-free dollars, and that counts for something, especially on a Friday.
Here are a couple of quickie textbook trades. Coincidentally, they produced identical profits. First off, CPB.
A bog standard momentum trade taking $600 in about ten minutes. There was a bit more to be had in the last hour too, for anyone hanging around at that time.
Next up, WLL:
Another pretty much textbook trade. There were some substandard entries before the one I took. One of those I rejected for the usual off-chart reasons, the previous one I actually missed because I was watching another chart. Sometimes missing an entry is a good thing! Once in, it was a smooth ride, jumping ship when the momentum ran out for another $600.
This first trade looks more complicated than it was. The first entry was a dud — momentum dropped off a cliff so it was time to get out. Fortunately there had been just enough momentum at the point of entry to get me over the line so I could exit with enough to cover commissions (and a few bucks extra), so not a total loss. It’s always about escaping with your account intact. I’ll keep banging that drum forever. We can take tiny losses for days or weeks, and we can take tiny profits forever. It’s about protecting capital and being there for when the winners come along.
As it happens, the winner came along on the second go. Then things moved far and fast. I scaled out, taking half off in an obvious place and letting the rest run risk free. Sometimes that yields more than just getting out at the first sign of trouble (as was the case here), and sometimes you end up with a bit less. Again, it’s about being there for the bigger winners. In all, more than fifteen hundred dollars profit from this trade, but it was definitely more ‘hard work’ than I prefer!
The second trade I’m posting (and here’s your regular reminder that I don’t post all my trades here, just a selection that I think are interesting), was much more vanilla. Textbook in and out for a quick profit.
There was (a lot) more to be had for anyone taking a second entry on IQ, but I was out by then. Volume was drying up and we were heading into lunchtime. With a decent profit for the day already banked, I wasn’t prepared to risk another entry. My loss.
First a two-biter. BG was a bit of a wild ride, dropping precipitously before climbing all the way back and then some. The first trade was an exit on target. When it set up for another go, complete with confirming momentum, there was no reason not to have another go, and indeed the second bite (complete with another obvious exit target) proved even more profitable than the first.
Sure, there was plenty more on the table, but as I’ve written numerous times, my strategy is all about taking the easy middle bit than trying to pick tops and bottoms. Two simple, low-risk trades produced a four-figure profit between them. I’ll take that every day over the stress of trying to run a trade to the very extreme, thanks.
Next up, the Cheesecake Factory. I don’t mind admitting that for the longest time I believed that place was a made-up establishment existing only in the world of The Big Bang Theory! Turns out it’s real, and tradeable, too.
I also don’t mind admitting that I was a little more wary of this trade going in because the setup was not perfect. There was a good easy target though, and I knew I could get out with a 2-3 cent loss maximum, so it was worth the risk. Well worth it, as it turns out.
After the long weekend with the markets closed on Monday, here was a nice trade to get the week rolling. Textbook entry, clear enough exit, and $1.35 banked per share, for a nice quick profit of $1,350 trading just 1000 shares. Obviously that could easily be doubled by sizing up. That works out about $67 per minute spent in the trade, which whilst not the most profitable trade posted on this blog, is nonetheless a nice bonus after the day off.
Here’s something different — a late session trade. After missing a few days last week with sickness, and with the holiday on Monday, I felt guilty at not having been active enough recently. So I came back after lunch and watched the end of the session, which meant I was around to catch this little rally on MU (core) for a few hundred dollars extra.
Just time to post this quickie — a ten minute trade straight off the core list.
Not much to say. Standard setup, good clear entry, obvious price target. Five hundred in the bank. Perfect kind of trade for when you’re still feeling a bit groggy from the flu. Or anytime, really. Who doesn’t like easy ones?
I’ve been unwell since the end of last week, hence not having posted any trades here for a few days — nothing to post. Back in the saddle now, so here are a couple from Wednesday. Nice easy ones that don’t require thinking. I can’t be taxing my flu-addled brain too hard..
Five minute in and out on TEVA. Clear signal + obvious target = no brainer. And I have no brain to speak of at the moment, so this worked for me. $330 profit pays for some hot drinks and paracetamol.
Another five minute trade, only this one in the opposite direction. Dropped quickly, and started to recover even more quickly, so again, it did not require much thought to get out at the first obvious target. Almost four hundred dollars profit makes me feel better about getting out of my sick bed.
In all seriousness, I’m well over the worst. I would not have risked trading if my head wasn’t up to it, it’s just not worth it. But nice quick simple trades like these, whilst not massive winners in dollar terms, are ideal when you just want to keep things ticking over.
Yesterday I posted a trade worth $100/minute. Today’s first trade beats that handsomely. Here’s what happened on GRUB:
That’s well over four grand in well under ten minutes. As I said yesterday, trades like that don’t come along every day. When they do happen, we need to treat them like any other trade. A glance at the scale shows that this stock was extremely volatile prior to my entry, trading relatively massive range already. So all the signs were there that this could be a big winner (it had already travelled more than $5).
It’s easy to be intimidated by that kind of volatility, but as long as we remember that the same rules apply whether the stock has moved $5 or 50 cents, we shouldn’t go too far wrong. Tight money management keeps us from huge losses. Had this not worked right away, I would have been out in a heartbeat. Given the speed it moved, that might have meant taking a few cents loss in the time my exit order went through, but that’s an acceptable risk given the potential reward.
The other trade I’m posting for today was much more ‘normal’. This was BBT:
Much more sedate, the sort of thing we do see every day on the NASDAQ.
Another day, another two-biter. Oh, yeah, yesterday was a three-biter. Well the principle is the same — no reason not to take a second entry when all the stars align and the signal is good. Which is what happened on NYT:
Unlike yesterday, these were both winners. The second signal occured on massive volume, providing ample confirmation. The exit was obvious to anyone who trades my strategy. If you are into trading double tops and the like, you could have had a nice short after lunch, too. Personally I was long gone by then.
Despite hitting a four-figure profit, that wasn’t my most profitable trade for the day in terms of dollars-per-unit-of-time. That accolade went to MGNX. The scale is a bit off on this chart, so it doesn’t look like much, but this netted well over $600 in under five minutes. So yeah, more than $100/minute. I stress that is not the sort of thing that happens every day. Which is why it made it into to day’s blog post!
Sometimes it takes a few bites at the cherry to get what you’re after. But there’s a fine line between flogging a dead horse and taking legitimate trades. If a trade does not work out but the stock goes on to present a second signal, it’s perfectly valid to take that second entry. And if that doesn’t work out but a third comes along, there’s no reason not to take that as well. Such was the case on QCOM on Tuesday:
If this was a stock that I did not know well, I probably would have let it go after the second failed signal. As it is, I’ve been trading QCOM on and off for the best part of 20 years. I’m not saying I have a feeling about this stock, because that’s mumbo-jumbo and not something to base trading decisions on. But I do have two decades experience of seeing how it moves, which gives me the confidence to keep taking the signals it throws up when they come along.
Of course, the key to being able to keep taking those signals is to avoid blowing up our account by taking a loss on the failed ones. Getting out at break even at worst means we can take those signals all day long until a winner comes along. Ideally we want to cover our commissins, as was the case with the first one. But sometimes slippage means we lose a little, as happened on the second entry. I’ve shown it as break even on the chart because is was a close as makes no difference. 1 lost cent is a small price to pay for the 49 cent win that came next. So although it took some work, QCOM put another $460 (after commissions and that earlier loss) into my account.
Here’s a trade that went much more smoothly:
Pretty textbook stuff. And when I say textbook, I’m obviously talking about my own textbook! All the trades I post on this blog are from the setups in my book. Setups that have worked for decades, and continue to work day in day out. People sometimes ask me if I have any new strategies. Why change a winning formula? This stuff is simple and it works.