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My First Year of Trading


Well it's been a year since I first live traded and after all the ups and downs my yearly return ended up being a measily 2.6%. I'm sure commissions are responsible for at least several hundred dollars.
That's excellent ! It seems most lose money and quit much sooner so you are way ahead of them all. Now it's just a matter of time before you sharpen your skills and focus on what has worked well for your personality. Concentrate on the positive. I know you may be discouraged but stick with it. It took me 2 1/2 years and I was a net loser for those years. Study all your winners and compare them to the losing trades. What was different? What was the same? What was happening with the general market? What time of year was it? Then analyze yourself to see what your brain was doing. It's tough work but you are on your way Feng. Hang in there!

Bruce
I agree with everything that Bruce says. That's a great result for your first year. The only other thing that I would also look at is what time of day did you enter and exit your profitable and losing trades. See if you can pick up a pattern there.
Thanks guys.
You did well. Pat yourself on the back. The thing with commissions is that they can weigh heavily on your profits if you overtrade. I experience it myself.

In times when I need to stop loss, commissions can really hurt.
Congrats, you're in the top 5% of traders, lol! Keep at it my friend...
Good work Feng.

Stay positive.
Originally posted by feng456

Well it's been a year since I first live traded and after all the ups and downs my yearly return ended up being a measily 2.6%. I'm sure commissions are responsible for at least several hundred dollars.


Do yourself a favor and trade less, concentrate on increasing your contracts/positions than trades as that's the key. You will end up paying less commission and much more relaxed. In day trading just to break even you have to be right about 70% of the time, pick the best/profitable plays only.
I already do that. I average 4 trades a week.
Hey feng,

I don't think 2.6% is "measley" ... not for a first year. And now you've gotten a year's worth of experience where your mind is working through things, cataloging and building up a sense of how the market behaves (price moves) - especially sub-consciously.

There are "aha" moments and "breakout" moments that hit you along the way ... as well as plateauing sometimes and some frustration. Keep on being a student of the market. If you're averaging 4 trades per week, that allows for you to pick and choose only high quality trades it sounds like to me (depending on your trading time frame and strategery, obviously).

As long as you have a good money management safety net in place, you're way up on the curve and congrats on that! I lost money during my first few years of trading part-time and also lost money my first year full-time.

And just out of curiosity, what do you typically trade and what is your holding time ... and just a sentence or so on your basic strategy?

Keep at it!

MM
I hold on average 30 minutes - 1 hour trading the ES. I started out overtrading so this was specifically designed to prevent low quality trades, emotional trades, paying the broker, etc.