Thursday, June 12, 2008

Disaster Averted

My trading day was fairly uneventful until around 10:00am, when I bought BG. Looking back, I really haven't the slightest idea what I was thinking, which is remarkable, because I had no other positions at the time.

For 20 minutes, I bought the stock and then sold a half point lower. I did this 4 times with 100 shares and was down close to $300 in the stock. For the day, I was down over $400. I wish I could say that I made good, well thought out trades to bring me back, but instead, I bought BG again, this time at $115. I put my stop a half point away and went outside to start clearing some brush.

(I'm too lazy to explain the graph below... think of it as an art piece titled Frustration #119.)

A half hour later I came back and was up exactly $1 in the stock. I sold at $117.62 and counted my blessings.

I was still down on the day, but another short I put on, in SU had begun to work and pulled me back into the green.

After that, I was basically flat. I was relieved to have battled back from down over $400 (not an easy feat with my current position sizes) but also felt somewhat humbled all over again. I've felt real progress lately and I really can't explain what I was thinking with the BG. What I think happened is that I was influenced by the chat my office was having. It seemed like an active morning and I wasn't seeing much so I think I "forced" the trade...

Ultimately, BG retraced seven points. I've said it before that trades like this are in my future, but right now, I need to stay away from them... especially on a day where I was down a little. If I'm up $500 on the day and feel like risking $200 on a high volatility trade, I can do that. However, until I really have everything on track, I should really stay away from these plays. I mean, in the 20 minutes I was involved with the trade I went through all the worst kind of emotions you can have while trading... fear, self loathing, disappointment, paranoia... it's just not worth it.

It was a good lesson. I'll be staying away from these trades until I'm consistently making good money again.

So I went outside and spent the day ripping apart old woodpiles and removing leaves from the wooded lots adjacent to what passes as our "lawn." This in an effort to remove tick and mice habitat to lessen the chances of our daughter getting another tick bite.

I came inside for a drink of water and switched on the monitors to see if I was missing anything. I noticed SOL, from the HCPG watchlist, setting up just at $19. I had located 500 shares of the stock pre-open in case I needed to sell it. As it turned out, I decided to sell 400 of them just as the stock broke through the fig.

As you can see, the stock dropped 2.5 points from the entry. I made about 25 cents on the play... frustrating indeed. However, it points out how necessary it is the be able to let go of past mistakes. I was still turning over the BG trade in my head and happy just to be positive. I wasn't thinking about all the potential I was overlooking in SOL. My head was thinking about what had happened, not about what was happening at the moment.

Apparently, I still have a long way to go before I can call my trading "zen-like."

Anyway, here's the stats:

P&L, $120
Best, SU, $164
Worst, RIG, -$54

5600 shares traded.
8 stocks traded, 4 winners, 4 losers.


YoungChuck said...

I have had alot of trades/days like your BG trade. Your lucky it only a half hour of retardedness to realize you are f'in up. I guess that shows your experience, it took me much longer. Now I prefer to have the wind at my back.

Dinosaur Trader said...

Unfortunately, at times and without warning, my "wind sock" gets completely fucked.