Does anyone really make money trading futures?

Does anyone really make money trading futures?

I am just wondering.

I know I don't. I have tried all the indicators and the chat room gurus, and none of them make money.

I have a suspicion that a lot of the chat rooms for emini trading are just for hobbyists and market enthusiasts and not for serious traders trying to make a business out of trading.

For any new traders out there please be very cautious of paying anyone to mentor you or signing up for training or a chat room. From what I have seen the only people making money in these deals is the mentor, the chat room owner or the author of the training manual.

I would love to hear from you if you are a successful trader making 20% off your account or better over the past year. I know only 5 to 10 percent of traders are supposed to be successful, but I am beginning to think that zero percent of traders are successful over the long haul. Certainly anyone can have a streak of luck and rack up a few good months where they dramatically increase their account size, but these people are normally big risk takers and eventually they blow out their accounts by taking the exact same risks that help double their accounts in the first place.

Thanks in advance for any response.

Let me know if your associates don't mind my joining the chat for a period so I can see you trade. I don't have access to a good chat right now, and I'd rather see you in your normal environment anyway. You can contact me directly via an e-mail through the forum by clicking on my name and sending it that way, if you prefer, or via posting in here. Thanks.
Here's an idea I've recently read about. Brett Steenbarger twitters what he's doing (see his blog post Making use of twitter trader feature).

hunterone: You could twitter your trades for a few days which would allow Jim (and others) to follow what you're doing.

This doesn't just apply to hunterone, anyone who wants to "shout out" their trades can just twitter them.
Thanks everyone for the responses.

Hunterone, your responses are most appreciated. You are obviously in the “Tiger Woods” class of trading professionals. Though I doubt that I can achieve the same level of success as you I am still encouraged to hear that someone out there is truly making day trading the emini’s a profitable business. Because you have shared your success with me I think I will be able to persevere longer with my own trading. And I guess that’s why I started this thread in the first place, hoping I would hear from someone exactly such as yourself. Trading can be very lonely at times and just knowing there is one other individual out there who is trading the same product as I am (I also trade the ES), and making not only consist profits, but truly amazing profits, is a big psychological help to me.

And I second Jimkanes response - if you would ever be willing to let me into your room for even a day as an observer I would be grateful.

Thanks again to everyone.
Greg glad I could help.
I have no problem if you or anyone else wants to hear me trade.
We use Skype instead of a chat room. I can trade while talking with skype where as I can do that in a chat room. I can just leave my mic open on the corner of my desk and talk while you hear me through your speakers. Skype is free to download and is free to use with other skype users. Our small group is located all over the US with one in Canada.
So if you or Jim or anyone else is interested send me your skype user name and we will pick a day to do a skype conference call.
Day Trader,

I have looked into Twitter. Since it is a text service its doesnt allow me to trade and talk at the same time. I dont mind using it for a few days if everyone understands that my trades will be posted after I take the trades. I have to trade and manage the trade first. So I could only enter after I get filled and have entered my stops and limit orders. I can posted areas I am looking to trade before hand but those may not be trades I actually take. Taking trade depends upon what is happening at he moment the trade areas are reached.
I usually scale out with 2/3 of my position coverd at 1 point profit and allowing 1/3 to trail. It may be to difficult to post and manage my trades. However I am willing to try this if there is any interest.

I sent an e-mail response back to you about using the Skype four days ago, but didn't get a reply. Maybe it got lost in cyberspace. I agree with you, to see you trade real time and see what trades you acually take, when you take them, Skype would be much better than anything text, which would have a 'lag' time. E-mail me and let me know if you need me to resend that last e-mail. Thanks.
I agree with Jim. Unless the trades that you take are called out ahead of time there is very little value to it so your point about Twitter basically invalidates that technology. I think that the best idea is your original one about you and Jim hooking up on Skype.

I would love to listen in if you can send me a PM to discuss.

I have seen very few traders that make a living off trading alone...however, there are quite a few out there that have trade rooms, sell manuals, methods, signals, etc etc...and those guys are sometimes pulling in 6 figures from those types of things.

I am not knocking them...but I would venture to say that 9 out of 10 trading services or rooms make a lot of their money from subscriptions and not from trading and I would venture to say that 9 out of 10 successful traders do not run trading rooms or sell trade methods or manuals (and by successful I mean trade for a living).

My personal struggle has been that the market is just downright random. We constantly think we have found something that works well but in reality it is just randomly working well. :) We are on the never ending journey to get an edge on randomness. There are just too many factors that cause a market to move and no mathematical formula can predict that movement.

It is very tough to make a living doing the above but some people do it. As much as I hate to liken it to poker I am going to. Professional poker players look for an edge in understanding a game of statistical probabilities...and some make a good living at it. However, that game has randomness in every shuffle. Successful traders do the same thing (and the mental battle is the same with lots of money on the line)...the difference is the deck of cards in the market is really just, news events, political events, financial events, big money maneuvers, public reaction to all of the above, manipulation, etc etc...

What is interesting to me about it all is how technology is changing the market...everything is going electronic and it is changing the face of trading as we once knew it.
I sent you an email Subq. In one of my previous posts I listed the 3 things I feel you need to trade. The problem is that most vendors do not provide students with all 3. Also there are unrealistic expectations. Vendors say things like 85% winners etc and people believe this. Methods that promise these things are a dead give away that the vendor cannot trade and will never teach you how to trade.
This afternoon was a perfect example. I had no strong indication for that long from 14. Nothing at all told us that this trad will run to 26. The sad thing is I know many people got killed trying to short against this rally.. Many MP traders tried trades at 1x and 2 x IBS and various POC and VAL highs only to get stopped out. Most vendors do not teach the golden rule. Never trade against a strong move no matter how good the counter move signal. I had several short signals that i skipped. I only had one entry into the long at 18.25 and I had a exit signal at around 21. I followed my rules and missed most of the trade but so what. We must learn that that there is always another day and another trade you do not have to take every trade and catch every move. Mostr vendors only pay lip service to this and they dont teach an entry method.
Also vendors that cant trade usually put out exact numbers to look for. Students then get in a habit of looking for an exact number or they dont take a trade. One secret to overcome randomness is to learn that we are not looking for numbers rather we are looking for areas. So your trading method must identify these areas for you. Then you must have a method for reading what is happening at those areas and then you must still accept that you will have losing trades. I have losers almost everyday. Often multiple losers. I just have more winners than losers and I have a methods for managing the losers so I never get hurt to bad. I almost never have a stop of more than 1.75 points. It usually rangers from .5 to 2pts depending on my fill. I almost never take a trade if i have to use a stop greater than 2 pts. I never take a trade unless i have identified my stop before I get an entry signal. It is not a crime to skip a trade even if you miss a 20 pt move. The crime is taking a trade that does not conform to your entry stop and exit rules.
This afternoon was a perfect example once the 18 area was broken the next area to short was 26.50. So I wasnt even looking for shorts intil we got to about 25 and on top of that I needed to see the brakes being applied to the move. We did get the short from 26 at almost 4pm this short has dropped to 21.50. To late in the day for me but we got the perfect short signal at the only legitimate area to take a short from. If that had happen 30 minutes sooner I would have been short no questions asked.
This is meant to be an example of what I mean by knowing your areas ahead of time, knowing where your stop will need to be if you take a short. Knowing what you need to see from the market before you can take a short and then knowing what your entry signal will be to take the trade.. You need to know all these things in advance or you are just shooting craps. To identufy the area for everyone 26.50 was the 50% retrace of the move from 1558.75 to 1494.25. We did have IB targets at 19.25 22 and 27.50 but the move was so strong that unless i had additional confirmation at those levels I would not take shorts from them I had no addional confirmations from my confirming methods.The 3x IB was 27.50 and gann retrace was at 27 so combined with a 50% Fib retrace which is a strong area on its own I had a very strong area to look for a reversal. I did get my short signal at 26 by then we also had momentum worked off as well. Hence a short. I new my stop was either going to be at 27.75 which was the best place for a stop or 27 2 ticks past my FIB . The placement was dependents on my reading of momentum. If I wasnt sure then the stop would be very tight at 27.
I can hardly believe what I read sometimes.


Had you been in our chat room, you would have seen a trade called 15 minutes ahead of it being triggered, it was a LIMIT LONG at 1516.50 with a target of 2 x IB ~ 27 area (we got stpd out before reaching 27, on a trailing stop)

The trade was one of our core setups, called in advance and many of our members participated.

I will also mention that the early part of the day was a huge chop fest, and we did have a hard time..we suggested to stand aside, until better opportunites setup

BUT... the issue is this, many who claim to trade Market Profile, havre no clue what they are doing.

Everything in our methods told us LONGS
When traded a new high, and then faded back hard at 13:51, our members were told that the HOD was not in yet, and to look for breakouts.

For the record, there were 145 people in the room at the time, who saw the trade, and took the trade

I consistently profit from futures/futures options, but it took me a long time to figure out the best way for me to do so.

While a set of trading rules is very important, I have found that it is just as, maybe even MORE important, to develop "trading callouses" from getting your butt handed to you repeatedly along the way.

Here's the thing: Any set of rules will only work until they don't. It is normal human psychology that there will come a time (again and again) where you deviate from the rules because A) you have had a string of losses, B) you have had a string of wins and now you have a loss and can't believe you're really supposed to "lose this one," C) you get greedy, D) you get scared for whatever reason, or E) any one of a thousand other things that will cause you to screw up.

I had ups and downs for many years until I thought I had it figured out and had a couple of years of really solid profits. I had my own private island picked out :) (not really, but I did have a condo in mind O/N an island). Then came the financial crisis of 2008 and I learned that while I had a generally good strategy, because times were good I had not developed an appropriate risk control system.

Hundreds of thousands of dollars later... (and that didn't take long at all!) I learned the hard way that my strategy was woefully inadequate when the unexpected happened. It took me a while to brush myself off, but eventually I did.

Since sometime in 2009 my cumulative returns are somewhere around 450%. Over the past 9 years I've found that proper risk control continues to be where I tend to fall short, so I've had some choppiness during this time. About two years ago I tightened things up some more to try to make for a smoother equity curve... this mean that, theoretically, my losing months should NOT be as large as in the past, but my winning months will also not be as large as they were in the past.

That's okay though -- even my cumulative success over the past 9-10 years, when averaged out by month, comes to < 2% a month. I suspect that 2% a month, long term, is about where I'll stay, but the ride should just be smoother along the way.

A return like that may or may not be enough for a particular person--it is for me--but keep in mind if you want to shoot for the stars there's a really good chance you're going to eventually crash land back on earth. It really does come down to being adequately capitalized and having a reasonable return be "enough" for you. By all means, trade even with a small account, because you need that experience to get to the point where you'll know what you're doing when you have the larger account. Just don't expect to turn a tiny account into a massive one along the way or you will probably be disappointed.