The people who are most successful in trading have a number of things in common. One of the most important of these traits is that they treat trading as a business, not a hobby.
This video might just be the most important I’ve ever posted. There is massive economic disruption on the horizon. Those prepared for it, could make a fortune. Those who bury their head in the sand, could lose everything.
(Here’s the link to Mike’s video, mentioned in my video above)
I know, I know, it’s been ages since I’ve posted anything! There are two main reasons for this:
1. The markets, as always, are so full of wonderful trades, sometimes it just doesn’t leave time to post.
2. I ran out of things to say.
That second one is the main issue. My last series of videos reached a natural conclusion with the final Let’s Get Practical film.
Doing more live trading videos isn’t really where I want to go, because they are of little value (they’re all the same after a while) and because they cost a lot in lost revenue while recording them (for various reasons I won’t bore you with).
Doing more content-based videos I think gives more value, but I want to make sure they are genuinely useful. So if you have suggestions for topics you’d like me to cover, do get in touch and let me know.
Anyway, back to trading. As I mentioned, the markets are awesome right now. I keep getting emails asking “Does your strategy still work?” or “Are you still trading?” etc.
Listen: a properly developed strategy that is based on fundamental market mechanics (or “price” as I prefer to call it!) will always work. My strategy, as anyone who’s read my course knows, is based entirely on price, not some wonder-indicator that only works in market that happens to be doing one particular thing – be that going up down or sideways.
As long as prices move, the strategy works. And prices move every day the market is open. All you need do is find the stocks whose prices are moving the most on any given day.
There are various ways of doing that, but here’s a really really simple one you can use right now: Pick 25 Nasdaq 100 stocks that fit in your price range.
In other words, make your daily watch list, a list of 25 stocks that come from the Nasdaq 100 list. Pick stocks that are trading within your price range as defined by your money management strategy. For example, stocks priced between $10 and $30.
It’s hardly scientific, and it’s certainly not the most efficient way of selecting a watch list. But as many people try and over complicate things, it’s as good a way as any of “dumbing down” and actually getting started (on paper, naturally).
Here are three trades from Monday that were Nasdaq 100 component stocks:
Ok, possibly a bad example I know, because it’s a high priced stock. Don’t forget though, with dynamic sizing you can make most stocks fit most budgets. So if you can’t trade 1000 AAPL shares, why not trade 100? It moves so well you can still make a good profit with smaller size.
Mondays trade went something like this (numbers relate to the circles on the chart):
1. Entered a short position.
2. Covered the short for +$0.50 (= $50 @ 100 shares, or $500 @ 1000 shares)
3. Took another short
4. Covered here for +$1.50 (= $150 @ 100 shares, or $1500 @ 1000 shares)
So even trading just 100 shares, there was a straightforward $200 profit to be had. For those who prefer the afternoon session, have a look at that lovely rally in the last couple of hours – easily $2/share to be had there (so another $200 profit if trading just 100 shares).
Right, next one:
1. Took a short
2. Covered for break even
3. Took another short on the break of the very obvious support
4. Covered for +$0.70 (= $70 @ 100 shares, or $700 @ 1000 shares)
And again, a lovely rally in the afternoon session, worth another $1/share without any trouble.
1. Took a short here
2. Covered here for +$0.20 (=$20 @ 100 shares, or $200 @ 1000 shares)
Ebay is a much lower priced stock, so although the profit per share was much lower than the other two, you could easily trade larger size to make up for it.
So there you have it – three Nasdaq 100 stocks providing simple trades. Now Monday was a particularly easy day to trade, but the point is there are easy trades like this every day – if you look for them.
Here’s a quick heads up for you… If you are in the UK, or have access to BBC 2 TV via some means such as satellite or the rather excellent iPlayer, then you may want to check out a new show tonight – Million Dollar Traders – at 9pm GMT / 4pm EST. According to the BBC website:
“Eight ordinary people are given a million dollars, a fortnight of intensive training and two months to run their own hedge fund. Can they make a killing?”
This is being billed as “The Apprentice, but with stocks and shares”. Find out more here.
It’s nice to see mainstream TV showing what trader really involves, even if it is just cashing in on the current financial situation!
Anyone who’s subscribed to the free iTunes feed should have picked up the first of the new format videos I posted yesterday. If you haven’t got it yet, you can set your iTunes preferences to check for new episodes more frequently than once per day – just have a look in the settings.
I’ll post that video to this blog later on this week for anyone who can’t / doesn’t want to use iTunes.
Just a quick reminder that starting this week, I’ll be posting my videos on iTunes at least 24 hours before they are available anywhere else, including my own blog. You can get iTunes for free (PC and Mac) here:
Once installed, search in the iTunes Store for “Harvey Walsh”, or just follow this link to get to my podcast page:
Click “Subscribe”, and you’re all set! All my future videos, including my new series of how-to-trade videos, will be automatically delivered directly to you without you having to lift a finger.
First new video will be some time this week….
No video this week, what with thanksgiving holidays and all that. But I did want to take a couple of minutes to tell you about a really important change of direction I’m planning for my video podcast.
When I first started producing live trading videos well over a year ago, I broke new ground – I posted them to YouTube for all to see, and at the time, I was the only trader doing so. Then I started distribution through iTunes (more on that in a bit), again breaking new ground.
Since then of course, lots of people have jumped on the bandwagon, and the are loads of videos available on youtube and similar sites. So the bar has been raised, which is great.
The feedback to my videos has been overwhelmingly positive. But watching live trades all the time is only useful to a point. What I can’t do very effectively while trading live, is explain some of my thought processes. In other words, showing what I’m doing is one thing, but I want to explain more about why I’m doing it.
So I’ve decided to take my videos in a new direction. Starting next week, I’m going to be bringing you more background stuff. Instead of live trades, I’ll be sharing with you my thoughts on how to trade.
This is going to be quite organic, and hopefully interactive. I’ve not got a long pre-planned list of subjects to cover, instead, I want to use your feedback to direct me. If there’s something you want me to talk about in a video, then let me know.
I’ll continue to include live trades from time to time as I know they’re popular. But over and above that, the format is open!
Getting The Videos
I mentioned iTunes earlier, and I really think this is the best way for getting your hands on my vids. It doesn’t matter if you use a Mac or a PC, iTunes makes the whole process ridiculously easy. You simply subscribe to my video podcast stream (for free of course), and every time I release something, it’s automatically in your iTunes!
You can watch it straight away on your computer, or if you have an iPod or iPhone, just sync it up and watch wherever you happen to be when you have a few spare minutes.
The great thing about this way of getting the videos is there’s no problem with buffering, or the video stopping and starting during playback, because it’s already downloaded to your iTunes. It also means you can keep copies of my videos on your computer, so if you want to watch more than once, you don’t have to wait for it to download each time.
If you don’t already have iTunes, you can download it for free from here (there are PC and Mac versions):
Once you’ve got it installed, you can subscribe to my podcast either by clicking this link:
…or simply search for Harvey Walsh in the iTunes Store. That will bring up my podcast page, and then you just click the Subscribe button.
I always make new videos available on iTunes before they can be seen anywhere else. Starting next week this will be even more the case – iTunes subscribers will get at least a 24 hour head start on anyone else.
Of course, I’ll still be posting videos here to the blog, if you prefer to watch in a browser. But if you want to be first to see what’s new, subscribing through iTunes (for free) is the way to go.
I forgot to mention in my previous post, that the meditation CD set is available as a 21 day free trial.
If you’re at all interested in using meditation to improve your focus and discipline while trading, then I highly recommend trying out the trial of these CDs. If you then decide to go for the whole set, they’re available with a full seven month guarantee, which is pretty impressive.
Here’s the site again: Meditation CD Set
As promised, here’s the link to the audio meditation program I talked about last week:
I can’t tell you how pleased I am that this system is going public. It’s been one of the greatest secrets of my success for a long time, and now everyone gets to benefit.
Do let me know how you get on if you decide to give it a try. And even if you don’t use this system, but use a different system of meditation, let me know how it works out for you.
Yesterday I revealed to you for the first time, how meditation – part of my daily routine – has been directly responsible for my success in day trading.
I’ve never talked about this before, for three primary reasons:
1. People don’t generally like to hear that “head stuff” (getting control of your emotions) is so important to success in trading.
2. Although I use it daily, I’ve never really felt comfortable trying to offer advice on the subject of meditation. Just like I can drive a car, but wouldn’t know where to start teaching someone else to drive, so it is with meditation.
3. The structured meditation program I use myself, hasn’t been available to the public, so there was little point in me telling you about something you couldn’t get.
The third point is what is about to change though, as the program I use is going to become publicly available on Monday next week.
I’m going to tell you a little bit about it, then I’m going to give you a meditation exercise you can do right now.
MEDITATION FOR THE LAZY
As I mentioned yesterday, I’m naturally a very lazy person. I like shortcuts. Anything that avoids effort sounds good to me. The meditation program I use is right up my street.
You see the trouble with a lot of these kinds of exercises, the ones you find in library books, is that they require quite a lot of mental effort and discipline. You have to learn the exercise, then actually do it. My trouble is remembering the right steps, doing them in the right order, maintaining concentration, and all of this without falling asleep!
The meditation program solves these issues. It’s an audio system – in other words – something you listen to. And if we want to keep things simple, that’s basically all there is to it. I stick the CD into a player (or select the track on my iPod if I’m using that), sit back, relax, and listen. No effort involved – wonderful!
3 TRACK MIND
Of course, below the surface there’s quite a lot going on. Feel free to skip this explanation if you’re not interested in the technicals…
The audio tracks in the program have been designed to synchronize your brainwaves to specific frequencies – which is the basis of all meditation. There’s nothing scary or unnatural about this, we all do it all the time without knowing it – especially when we sleep, or daydream. Using a meditative technique just takes control of the process.
In basic meditation, with practice, you can train yourself to slow your brainwave frequency. This has a massive calming effect, and gets the logical and emotional sides of the brain working in harmony. It’s a very beneficial process, and actually has positive health effects as well as mental ones.
The audio program goes further though. It takes you on a journey through different frequencies. It gets different areas of the brain relaxed and calmed. It’s a kind of mental workout, but in reverse. Instead using energy, it fills you up with energy!
The audio uses three different techniques to work its magic. Firstly, it uses a system of “binaural entrainment”, which is a fancy way of saying you hear different things in each ear.
Secondly, it uses “rhythmic entrainment”, which uses rhythm to relax the mind. Thirdly, it uses “temporal entrainment”, a way of focusing the mind on the other entrainment techniques being used.
All this is wrapped up and “hidden” within a relaxing ambient soundtrack. You might have seen some CDs that use one or other of these methods, but as far as I know this is the only program that uses all three at once.
TICKLING THE MIND
Unlike basic meditation, listening to the audio is a totally passive experience. You don’t need to do anything. No exercises, no visualization, nothing that requires action. Just listen.
The result is something that’s difficult to describe. The first time I used the program, I could only liken it to someone gently tickling the back of my mind. I know that’s probably a really bad description, but that’s how it was!
The first five minutes or so nothing much happened. But then quite rapidly I felt myself falling into a surprisingly deep meditative trance. As I mentioned yesterday, I had already been doing some basic meditation before trying this program, so I was no stranger to this state of mind. But to reach it so quickly and effortlessly was a real revelation for me.
There are a number of audio tracks in the program, and in all they amount to what I can only describe as a a six month brain entrainment program. But don’t be deceived, the results start to show almost immediately.
THE BOTTOM LINE
What this all comes down to is this. Trading successfully requires a solid strategy, and a clear and focussed mind. Only when you have both can you truly reach your full profit potential.
The best way I know of getting your mind clear, is to regularly practice meditation. You can either do this on your own, using time tested exercises, or you can use a program that does the heavy-lifting for you.
Either way, if you meditate for about 30 minutes a day, I guarantee you that you will see a significant increase in your trading performance.
30 MINUTES = $???
How much is 30 minutes a day of your time worth? If you increased your profitability by just 10%, how much would that add to your bottom line each day? Each Month? Each year? What about if you increased profits by 25%? Or more?
And if you’re not yet profitable, do you think 30 minutes a day to turn the corner and start making money is a worthwhile time investment?
As I promised earlier, here’s a simple meditation exercise you can try right now. Please bear in mind that this relies entirely on you, it’s not like the audio system with it’s clever use of technology to do the heavy lifting for you. This exercise will require some mental effort. But the reward should be a great feeling of mental relaxation and clarity. Ok, here goes:
Start by finding a comfortable position. Sitting is good, lying down better. Be somewhere you wont be disturbed. Close your eyes, and count down slowly, from 25 to 1. As you count down each number, try and visualize it in your minds eye. Concentrate on each number.
When you’ve finished the countdown, start to concentrate on your feet. Feel your feet become heavier and heavier, as if they were made of lead. Focus all your thought on those feet. When you feel they cannot become any heavier, move your concentration to the bottom half of your legs. Imagine them becoming heavier and heavier.
Move slowly up your body, repeating the process – your knees, thighs, hips, belly, chest, hands, arms, elbows, shoulders, neck, chin, face, to the top of your head.
The whole exercise should take around 30 minutes if done right. When you’ve finished, you should be in a deep state of relaxation. You can bring yourself out when you are ready, by opening your eyes and saying to yourself “I am wide awake, relaxed, and my mind is clear and focussed!”
Don’t worry if you break your concentration, this is after all just an exercise, and you’ll get better with practice. Also don’t worry if you fall asleep the first time you do this – I did! Again, with practice you’ll slowly gain control.
I really hope you give this a try. These posts have been a radical departure from my usual videos and charts, so I hope they help!
On Monday, the audio program launches to the public. I’ll put up a post on Monday, with the link to the website. If you decide to give it a try, do let me know how you get on, I’d love to hear from you. And if you decide to just use the exercise above (or any other you might know of), let me know how that works for you as well.