Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Long AMZN (but only for a bit!)

Yes, I'm not proud of myself - I had a little punt on Amazon. I note the market was rising but AMZN was stuck and looking at the 10 minute chart I noted a nice little ascending triangle. I also noted that in a recent article Amazon is apparently one of the most heavily shorted hedge fund stocks. I checked the NASDAQ short interest web page and it still would take over 2 days to cover.
Of course when I clicked the buy button I was reminded of why I don't usually bet on this stock. An immediate 20 point spread. Nasty.

Still got very, very lucky and there was a quick breakout from the triangle on the long side so I booked my profit and swore not to touch Amazon again!

P/L 28.50

Close Gold whole postion

I've decided to close my whole gold position. I don't like the way it's hanging around at the moment. I feel that whatever the result of the Greek elections it's not going to be good for commodities so better to be out of the market. QE is the thing we're looking and now this may happen at the 19th-20th June Fed meeting. It's election year and Obama will undoubtedly be exerting pressure on Ben for a quick fix to juice the markets going into November.

P&L -23
I was a bit annoyed at missing out on a shorting oppotunity when the market jumped after the Spanish bailout agreement. I was racking my brains trying to think of a similar scenario that happened before where I'd made a small profit in such circumstances but couldn't remember and didn't write it down so I didn't do anything. However, now I remember - it was when Bin Laden was assassinated. The market jumped up irrationally then and I was able to short it. Just goes to show how important it is to keep notes.

Monday, 11 June 2012

Update on Gold postion

Right, so as I said it's a "warts and all" record of my trading experiences. I recently added to my gold position earlier today perhaps a little to early but anyway here's how it looks. Not pretty at the moment I grant you.

Bear Flag US Crude?

Despite my positive view on US Crude looking at the charts I have to wonder if there is a bear flag forming. I don't go in for a lot of technical analysis but in the past I have found bull and bear flags to be quite powerful formations. Overnight US Crude gapped up over 200 ticks from my cash in point last Friday. For a few minutes of faint regret at about 11:30pm last night having thought for a few minutes on Friday just putting in a stop at about +120 my feeling is that if you can get 50% of a move then that's pretty good and over a weekend you can never really tell what's going to happen.

If this bear flag plays out we could see a drop in Crude to 75-70 area.
I suppose it all hinges on the Greek election on 17th June. No doubt the Greeks will vote for whatever political entity that will promise the end of austerity politics and allow the party of early retirement, easy benefits and to continue. Sorry, but in the UK 70% of my aquaintances are basically socialists, even the ones who aren't(!), who think that cutting government debt is the incorrect and the government should continue to spend it's way out of recession. Because Cuba, who have probably out done every other nation on earth in government spending, is currently the most successful country in existence - an economic miracle. Obviously.

Saturday, 9 June 2012

Gold Weekly Chart 2010 - 2012

This is weekly chart showing gold since 2010. I've drawn some rough trend lines in - personally I don't think it's an exact science. I'm not hugely into the whole technical analysis thing if I'm honest
What I most note is two things
1) it's got a "floor" of about 1550
2) it's doing that "coiling" movement which can occur before a big breakout - up or down. I hope it's up!

Still Long on Gold @1603

I remain long on gold, or gold futures to be precise. After my recent success and banking of profits (applying my 10% rule) on gold I bought back into this commodity. IG Index is a good place to trade gold as it is one pound per dollar per ounce. Other spread betting platform are per tick and this can be difficult to time an entry point that either isn't going to get stopped out early in the way that gold tends to make sudden concerted moves.
Today, apparently, our brilliant EU leaders will be meeting to discuss bailing out some of the smaller banks in Spain that overextended themselves during the credit boom. The EU are not money printers per se but honestly - where the hell is this money coming from?
Anyway, I feel all these fiat currency shenanigans will have a positive effect on gold.
I should point out that on this account I am trying to make up for some pretty bad losses. I had originally charged it with a grand and had lost about six hundred of it. I now stands at approx seven hundred which is why my 10% rule kicked in at +60.

Friday, 8 June 2012

Long US Crude @ 82.77

I'd like to make these posts at the time of dealing but there's no time really. Anyway, I've been looking to go long on US Crude as I reckon that 78USD to 85USD is going to be the value for the foreseable future. Last night was tempted to buy, but managed to resist the urge and my patience was paid off by a 200 point overnight drop. I gamely pressed the BUY button and was rewarded with an immediate 40 point fall. Ha!. However, US Crude is a very volatile commodity so I made sure of a large enough stop (Capital Spreads default is 400 points which is about right) Basically I was willing to see it drop a fair way and hang on for several days.
As luck would have it, and believe me you can read all the news you want and look at all the charts but there's a lot of luck involved, buyers (more like speculators) returned and pushed the price up. Possibly because of something like a Spanish bailout. US Crude may slip to 78 but I'd be surprised if it went lower due to the amount of speculation that goes on and the untrustworthiness of banks like Goldman Sachs and co who are saying that commodities will collapse whilst at the same time advising their rich clients to buy commodities.
Anyway, with all my plans to continue to hold on to oil for the foresable future I just had to bank the 180 point gain I saw this evening. My rule is if you have a gain that is equal to 10% of your account value then bank it. In a similar way to how I used to play online poker if I doubled my stack I would leave the table. I felt this method slowly accrued a good bankroll.

P/L +177

Long Facebook @26.91

Last night I went long on Facebook at 26.91 as usual via my spread betting account. My reasoning is that reading a couple of articles Facebook is one of those shares that is heavily shorted. Any hint of an upward movement in the NASDAQ causes short squeeze. Morgan Stanley are currently lending out Facebook shares to short sellers and business is so good they are charging a premium over their usual services! When everybody wants one thing the market normally responds by doing the opposite and those shorts have got to buy themselves out of their positions.
But that night the general index route was down and spotting that things were going to turn a bit sour I got out for a small loss. I had a feeling that dropping through that trend at that time of day it wasn't going to come back.
Sold at 26.56 and the stock closed at 26.13. I don't like holding overnight at the moment.

P/L -35

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Long on Gold

Before the budget I had a short on the FTSE based on all the unresolved issues in the eurozone I felt the index was a little too optimistic. Unfortunately I did not follow through with this (read something about trading before the budget more fool me) and closed out when it was 70 points into negatively territory. What a shame considering what the FTSE then proceed to do in May almost a carbon copy of last May 2011. My instincts were good, my execution was poor.
However I recently looked at some gold charts and figured that gold seemed to have stabilised so it was worth a punt. There was a bit of good fortune as my decision to go long on gold seems to have coincided with the prospect of more QE. Long term I think gold will continue to do well with the amount of money printing and the total uncertainty of fiat currencies at the moment. As proof I've uploaded the transaction history where it shows I've made a nice healthy 70 point gain.

Returning to Spread Betting

After a long hiatus I have decided to tentatively dip my toe back into the spread betting / day trading arena. Basically my story is this. I first started spreadbetting during the crash of 2008 wanting to take advantage of the falling market by going short. Within the space of about a year I had succeeded in turning my initial stake of 1000 pounds into just over three grand. This is the truth - no outright lies or embellishments, I actually did acheive this. I told a few people and was very pleased with myself. I treated some of my friends to dinner at a restaurant. One friend even suggested I take out a grand and spend it on a new PC or something. I said "No - that's my stake. I'm going to build that into a personal fortune!"

Unfortunately, in one horrifying day I lost nearly one thousand pounds trying to be too clever. When the Bank of England first announced their QE policy I noticed that bond prices jumped and kept on rising without retreating at all. I thought I would try to take advantage of this when the second round of QE was announced by the US Treasury. Basically, I thought - "Wow! This is a sure thing. Set up my deals correctly and make easy money!" So I set up my deals accordingly, one below the bond price to sell if it was hit (ie a short) if no more QE was to be implemented, and one above to buy if that one was reached if the US Treasury was going to go ahead with more QE. What actually happened was that the market became incredibly volatile. Both deals were activated (I had implemented them without a "one deal cancels the other" setting and not given myself any outs ... any insurance), both deals were stopped out and in total both cost me about a grand.

I remember that horrifying day all too well. All that profit, all that work destroyed in an instant. After that I went a little mad trying to recoup my losses and bet all sorts of things. The result was I pretty much lost it all right back to my starting 1K. Then I stopped and decided this wasn't for me. But now I'm back. Older - maybe a little wiser (probably not) but willing to have another go. This time I will stick to indices, commodities and the odd share that I am familiar with.