I was in the same position for most of last year and early this year, trying to work out what it is I need to be before I could consider myself as a solid trader. Now I find myself in another mental predicament. Which is when do you start believing that as a trader you have found the key to a winning mentality/strategy? I have a few demo accounts where I am happy to say I have been quite successful over the last few months. I’ve returned 36.1%,44.7%,17.81% and 6.14% from April to July respectively. My mental problem is that up until now I have not been consistent and I am holding off from going live with the strategy as I am worried it will go tits up as soon as I risk real money. At what point after back testing, forward testing and seeing the results do most traders accept that the strategy works and to just get on with trading and making some money..?
Any comments or helpful hints will be very welcome.
Trading strategies go in and out of favor as the markets change. And the markets always change. Market structure is always key with your setups and that is a perpetual moving target. Are we in an uptrending market? I was asked separately by a state cop and my hair cutter (examples of passive traders/investors) in the past few days: Will the Fed speak recently cause a market down move? All of us as traders/investors need to be asking: Is this just another news catalyst that the market shakes off and we keep trending higher?
What market are we in?
Is that the reason your strategies are working?
What will a different market look like?
What gets you to cut your strategies in a new market structure?
What could the next market structure look like and what strategies would work well?
For our desk IPOs are working great. Maybe they don’t if the market sours and money heads out of the market. The Uncertainty Trade (see LULU and LINE) has been awesome until it isn’t. As a trader I am acutely aware that what is working may not continue working. Do you see a lot of guys momentum trading Internet stocks these days? Shorting bank stocks for a living?
It is up to you to decide whether to run your strategies live. I can only tell you what I would do if you were one of our traders. You have a few months of positive data for your strategies. If one of our traders came to me with those back-tested results, I would run them live. I would want to strike while they are working with a plan to exit when they stop. I would tell the trader to keep developing other strategies for this market and others.
I hope that helps.
You can be better tomorrow than you are today!
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