Seeing ways ahead

I will be completely unoriginal amongst bloggers or any other writers in saying that I want to recast what I write in the future.

Writing is introspective, so being concerned about what introspection to share and where that leads are part of the process. As I sit in a Florida airport waiting for a connecting flight, I am having more moments of reflection.

I have used the Christmas holiday to read a little about the experience of successful traders. Many lessons are there that could be absorbed personally and shared widely, because much of the root of success is general. But, some themes recur: consistency, focus, discipline, rules, emotional neutrality, and more. I’m thinking about how to apply some of them and to think about when and why I do no apply them.

A much respected foreign exchange market strategist who shares his views for the week to come through a webinar and gives daily updates based on that, commented a few days ago about the difficulties of trading as a profession. That was not to discourage anyone but to warn that, like many things, it is a long haul.

A factor drawn to my attention by my reading, which I also saw expressed by another strategist trader and strategist recently is to trade in a way that is consistent with your personality. That is complex and warrants expansion in due course.

Finally, for today, it is important to not try to force yourself in markets where you are not sure of what is going on or with which you are out of rhythm. The advice to ‘let the market come to you’ means you may have to be much less active, while you wait for desired situations.

The holiday trading environment was one such instance. End of month movements can often be volatile and seeminly erratic. This can be more amplified at end-year. While volatility is good for trading, harnessing it during such periods often requires a focus that may not be possible, and is of greater inportance because liquidity is considerably less. But, that volatility can present–unexpectedly–some desired situations. The nimble can grab them or the pre-set condition may arrive.

Staying in rhythm with markets is easier if you are watching them actively, but that does not mean you must trade to be in rhythm. One great trader mentioned the benefits of paper trading to rebalance his rhythm. In the current electronic environment, one can do something similar by trading on a dummy account: it is linked to live markets but involves no real money. It is a good way to test ideas and not have real gains or losses. It is a way for new traders to cut their teeth but should not be forgotten as a way to resharpen older teeth.

I will reflect on other things that drive my days. For now, that’s it. I have to board.

Posted with WordPress for BlackBerry.

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About The Grasshopper

Professional international economist, recently retired from an international organization. I use blogging as a way of organizing my ideas and thoughts about a range of topics. I was born in Jamaica, and spent many years being educated, living, and working in the UK. I lived in the USA for a few decades, and worked and travelled abroad extensively. My views have a wide international perspective. Father of girls. Also, married to an economist.
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