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Andy Jordan Educator for Futures Trading Strategies on Spreads, Options, Swing/Day Trading, and Editor of Traders Notebook. You can read my bio by following this link.

Jul
12

Controlling Emotions

​ Winning traders cannot afford to be influenced by their emotions. The nature of trading demands an objective, logical approach. If you experience extreme excitement after a win and extreme disappointment after a loss, you will be living on an emotional roller coaster: up and down, up and down. Many beginning traders have head knowledge of what it means to control their emotions. They can imagine...
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91 Hits
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Jul
04

Evaluation of your Trading

​ Taking an honest evaluation of your own strengths and weaknesses is crucial to becoming a consistently profitable trader. If you can't identify those habits which continually make (or cost) you money, then you're just shooting in the dark. It's extremely important that you know things about yourself such as: The time of day you are most profitable. The position size that works best for you. Your...
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109 Hits
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Jun
27

Shoulda-Coulda-Woulda Mentality

​ Winners take credit for their successes and full responsibility for their losses. Losers blame others for their losses and take full credit for their successes. A "shoulda-coulda-woulda" mentality does more than characterize the losing trader, it prevents him from making positive behavioral changes. Acceptance of total personal responsibility is not an optional choice for a winner it is a mandat...
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197 Hits
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Jun
24

What is a mental stop and should I be using them?

What is a mental stop? Why are traders afraid of them? Are they worthwhile? Why would anyone want to use a mental stop? Let's begin with why anyone would want to use a mental stop! It is usually preceded by your having been stopped out of the market only to have the market reverse and go the other way, causing you to miss a possibly profitable trade. That being said we can now address the question...
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96 Hits
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Jun
19

Staying Relaxed

Experience and trading from a plan can help you to make trades in a carefree, relaxed, and focused manner. It is important that you avoid putting unnecessary pressure on yourself. Success or failure is not riding on a single trade. You make it as a trader in the day-to-day trading, learning to be satisfied with what the market hands you. Avoid thinking you have to be right. You cannot impose your ...
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202 Hits
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Jun
13

Distraction

Distraction is not something you can afford. If you cannot be fully focused on the price action and on following your trading plan, you are going to frequently find yourself in the situation you describe. The best rule a trader can follow is to focus on the action, not the outcome. Yes, I know that you, like many others are attracted to trading for the rewarding profits that can be made. You feel ...
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240 Hits
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Jun
06

Persistence is Needed in Trading

​ Trading is a profession where dare not give up in the face of adversity. You must go into the trading day expecting to have losses. It's not the most optimistic outlook, right? Trading in today's markets isn't like trading in the steadily upward trending markets in the days before the advent of a PC that could let you see charts. In the days when markets trended as opposed to swinging, just abou...
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267 Hits
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May
30

Pivot Points

​ I have never been a pivot point trader per se. Pivot Points are those price levels that are most likely to act as levels of so-called support and resistance on any given trading day. As we already know, anything that most people use is liable to work. This is the only reason that theories like Fibonacci trading or Elliott waves appear to be more than just theory. For the same reason, the most in...
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343 Hits
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May
22

Believe in Trading

​ Is there anything we can believe when it comes to trading? Is it all lies and fakery? Trading is a challenge. Tens of thousands are drawn to trading, but few last more than a few months. Trading is presented in such a way that it appears to be easy, so it's difficult to face the truth that trading is difficult—at least until you can get the hang of it. Many beginning traders need to win. They ar...
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306 Hits
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May
17

The next big thing in equities trading is here!

This is what the CME says about their new product the Micro E-mini futures for the 4 major US indexes. The S&P 500, the Dow, the Nasdaq and the Russell 2000. https://www.cmegroup.com/cme-group-futures-exchange/micro-futures.html From what I can tell, this new products are really great especially with all the high volatility we see right now in the US indexes. While it was easy to trade in the ...
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237 Hits
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May
10

Technical or Fundamental Analysis?

​ There are a number of reasons that many traders favor technical analysis over fundamental. For starters, fundamental traders tend to be commercial firms; that is, they are involved in the actual production or consumption of a commodity. The commercial firms have the information that most of us cannot afford to acquire. For example, are you able to go out and check global soil conditions in an ag...
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205 Hits
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May
10

Is Trading all Lies and Fakery?

​ Trading is a challenge. Tens of thousands are drawn to trading, but few last more than a few months. Trading is presented in such a way that it appears to be easy, so it's difficult to face the truth that trading is difficult—at least until you can get the hang of it. Many beginning traders need to win. They are hoping that the huge profits they make trading will solve many problems in their liv...
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319 Hits
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May
03

Big or Small?

Careful risk management is a key component you being able to trade at your best. Comfort level is really important when it comes to risk. You need to be comfortable in three areas: Emotional, Mental, and Financial. We could even add Physical to that list without having to make too great a stretch. If there is a real danger that you will lose large amounts of capital, or money that you just can't a...
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319 Hits
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Apr
19

Rest Periods

During ongoing activities, such as day trading, you have to learn how to pace yourself. This means alternating between times of intense activity with times of greatly decreased activity, times that require very little of your attention. These "rest periods" should take place when you do not have to quickly react to sudden market moves. This is hard advice to follow for some traders. They just won'...
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394 Hits
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Apr
11

Trading In One Market Than In Many

​ Develop a relationship with that market, as though it was one of your best friends. Know the market's personality and feel its spirit to become one with it. Watch it carefully in various time frames. Watch it every day. One of the best experiences for a beginning trader, who may want to become a professional trader, is to sit in front of a monitor for a month and observe the market. Make price c...
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418 Hits
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Apr
04

It All Comes Together

It is critical to develop a well thought out and organized trading plan. It is then important to have the discipline needed to follow it. Diversify your trading into several unrelated markets, or focus on one market and time frame where you have seen you can make money. Trading, by its nature is not investing. Trading requires consistent monitoring on at least a daily basis because of the large im...
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388 Hits
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Mar
27

Manage the Trade

​ Once you get into a trade, you must eventually get out. Some argue that this is more important than where you get into a trade. My experience has been that any fool can get into the market, but it takes a successful trader to consistently get out with a win. As I follow the markets, I find there are four reasons to get out of a trade. Prices move significantly against my position. Prices stop mo...
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501 Hits
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Mar
21

Diversification

Diversification is one of the crucial factors in the success of some, but not all trading plans, and may in fact make the difference between success and failure of the plan. Putting all your eggs in one basket is not a good idea for some traders. This approach takes the position that rather than trading ten contracts in one market, look to trade smaller amounts in several different markets. The ai...
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381 Hits
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Mar
14

Confidence

A few years ago I had an interesting conversation with Joe about "what makes a trader a successful trader". We discussed this over several days because we wanted to find out how we can help struggling traders to enhance their trading. We finally came to the conclusion that "confidence" is what makes a huge difference. A trader can have a good system, good money and risk management in place, good u...
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409 Hits
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Mar
07

Striving for Perfection

You will never be a perfect trader. However, as traders we have a strong need to want complete control over the outcome of a trade. We want to believe that if we analyze the markets long enough, we'll have perfect knowledge and we can trade to perfection. But such desire leads to wrong assumptions that can do us more harm than good. Assuming we must have control restricts our actions and reactions...
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Derivative transactions, including futures, are complex and carry a high degree of risk. They are intended for sophisticated investors and are not suitable for everyone. There are numerous other factors related to the markets in general or to the implementation of any specific trading program which cannot be fully accounted for in the preparation of hypothetical performance results, and all of which can adversely affect actual trading results. For more information, see the Risk Disclosure Statement for Futures and Options.