Thursday, March 29, 2007

My Trade Candidates for 3/30/2007

Tomorrow is Friday and the end of the month, so it's hard to say what kind of day we'll have. After that drop and recovery today, I'm inclined to think we're going to have a choppy day - we'll see. These setups actually look pretty nice on the long side (be sure to check levels of support and resistance to see if you like my entry and stop levels). I don't have any outstanding short candidates today.

Nice Moves Today

We had some really nice moves today - both long and short - in the trade candidate list! Nice volatility. On the long side, FRPT was a home run, Q gave you a chance if you managed your stops well, and SUPG is on it's way and looks great so far. I got FRPT and I'm still in SUPG. On the short side, both MATK and SLXP broke down nicely; I hope you guys got some of that too!

I'll post my trade setups for tomorrow in a while after I have a chance to do some work.

At some time in the near future, I'll do a post on how I trade short SPX options. Today was a great day for part of what I do because there was a shakeout and as the market recovered, it looks like VIX put in a peak which is part of what I look for when shorting SPX puts. More later when I have a chance to do a more comprehensive post.

Recent Links to Apex Trader

How about a big 'THANK YOU!" to the following sites who recently linked to Apex Trader! Be sure to take a look a them when you have a minute:
Alpha Trends
Dr. Brett Steenbarger Weblog
Get Short!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

My Trade Candidates for 3/29/07

Well we had a pretty decent pullback today on more than light volume. I'm not really trying to do broad market commentary because Brian (and some others) do such a good job at that. It would suffice to say that the market is mixed and in a risky stage at this point, so whatever you decide to do, be careful!

There are potential opportunities on both the long and short side of the market, and I have tried to provide a relatively short list of decent candidates. I also have quite a few others I'm watching, many of which have been included in recent posts. A handful I'm particularly interested in are: APAC, MAMA, FIRE, LMRA, and LWSN on the long side. I'm also keeping an eye on CROX, IDCC, NATI and NEWP on the short side (I'm currently short NEWP).

Finally, one of my favorites perked up recently and may be setting up for a quick trade: ISIS. However, if you consider trading this one be very, very careful - do you see all the gaps on the daily chart? That means it can surprise you - in either direction.

This is why Stops Are Important!

I knew yesterday that something was up with APAC - look at the volume that traded yesterday - very high. Interestingly, most of it came late it the day. The chart looks bullish (I still think so) but when you see that kind of volume you never know for sure if it's good news or bad news. So far it looks like it meant bad news in this case, but maybe not: this morning's dip may have been a shakeout before moving higher (we'll have to wait and see). What is for sure is that this is a good example of what can (and often does) happen in thin stocks. They can move very quickly! That's why I point out that you need to be careful if you trade thin stocks.

I entered this stock today based on my setup sheet (just above 4.75) and put my stop at 4.68. Thin stocks like this can move far and fast against you, so while your fill on a stop may slip from your intended price, this shows why it's so important to use stops. I lost, but I didn't lose very much. That is the discipline of trading: keep your losses small and let your winners run.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

My Trade Candidates for 3/28/2007

Here are some setups for Wednesday. Got a nice move today out of LMRA; looking for re-entry on pullback as noted above; I may regret not leaving it on as it finished very strong.

In addition to the setups above, consider taking a look at the following (some are pretty thin - be sure to check what kind of volume they trade): LJPC, SIGA, ADLR, HLTH (I'm still prowling on these, waiting for the right entry - you've probably seen them in posts of recent days) as well as TALX, ZUMZ and GLUU. On the short side, I watched IDCC for what seemed like forever for a break down and it looks like it might have finally started today. I'll be watching for a rally back up and a short entry if conditions seem right for it. NATI, my short from yesterday, can't seem to decide where it's going, but it does look like a stock that's ready to tank - we'll see.

I should point out that while I post a certain set of stocks as potential setups for the following day, they often don't move as anticipated and the entry doesn't develop that day. However, I keep many of those on my watch lists for the following days and they often do develop into a tradable entry - either along the lines that I originally anticipated or a bit different based on how the stock trades in the interim period. So, if it seems like there is quite a bit of overlap on symbols from day to day, it's because there often is until a good entry develops.

Monday, March 26, 2007

My Trade Candidates for 3/27/2007

Well there was certainly some volatility today, which in the end looks like some nice consolidation. The fact that the market recovered so well after that initial sell off tells me that we're probably not going to completely cave in - at least any time real soon.

Here are some trade setups for tomorrow. I have lots and lots of thin, low-priced stocks that look potentially ready for a move up; however, I've limited the list today to six candidates to keep it manageable. Of these, ESST and FIRE are pretty thin. I'm currently long some LWSN (and EVC as well) after getting shaken out initially this morning. No short setups today as the bias seems upward; I was short NATI most of the day and given that it didn't break down (and traded pretty high volume again without downward movement), I covered.

If you want a few more to keep your eye on, here are some to take a look at, but remember: many of these are thin and volatile: HOKU, HRSH, JAV (very thin), LJPC, SIGA.

If you have a minute take a look at JSDA and SMSI. Both were on my "B" list today and I missed them!

Saturday, March 24, 2007

My Trade Candidates for 3/26/2007

About this BLOG


I am an independent, full-time trader of stocks, futures and options. I trade my own accounts, no one else’s; I don’t manage money nor do I provide any kind of investment advice. I don’t charge anyone for anything because I don’t provide services of any kind. I do REAL TRADES, with REAL MONEY, every day. I earn my living the hard way: by grinding out profitable trades based on hard work, commitment, and a passion for trading. It’s that simple (but not easy).


This blog is my way of sharing my views on stock trading, the market, and (if I feel inclined) on life. Blogging has become an excellent way to communicate and share with others who share similar interests and who may be able to help each other in our endeavors. I will generally post my ACTUAL TRADE SETUPS in a grid format for anyone to review as educational and idea generating tool. I may also post certain other ideas or observations from time to time.


In general, I will post my trade setups for the following day some time within a few hours after the market closes. As an example, I will generally post Tuesday’s trade setups some time Monday afternoon. Of course there will be exceptions to this, but that will be the general approach. If there is not a post within a few hours after the market close, check back later in the evening or early the next morning.


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Why would I go to all this trouble? Because I think it helps me to help others: by formalizing my trade ideas and making them visible to other traders, I expect to become a better trader myself and to learn from others who look at my trade ideas.


This blog is for educational and entertainment purposes only. I am not providing investment advice, and I am not making trade recommendations. I am sharing my own personal views on trading and providing one person’s perspective on potential trade opportunities. That doesn’t mean you should trade them. If you trade, you are always responsible for your own trades and your own trade ideas. Some of the stocks I trade can be very volatile and thinly traded (illiquid). Trading involves risk, so if you trade you should be sure you understand what you are doing.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

My Trade Candidates for 3/23/2007

Lesson of the Day

There is a reason that good traders teach and preach the importance of TREND ALIGNMENT across the timeframes relevant to your trade. Yesterday, in the excitement of a runaway market with FED euphoria, I went long ICE on strength above the highs made earlier in the day, anticipating a reversal of the downtrend so clear on the daily timeframe. The stock appeared to hold support at the 10dma, and looked headed upward. However, ICE sold off (on high volume) on the short term chart yesterday afternoon, foretelling today's selloff and reminding me that one should never hold a long position in a downtrending stock - and if you decide to anyway - don't trust it. That is doubly true if it's a listed stock. Another post-it reminder will have to be added to those already hanging on my monitors...

I expect tomorrow to be a slow day in the markets given the lack of data beyond Existing Home Sales data and the fact that it's Friday following the action we've seen this week. I probably won't trade, but will flip through some charts later this evening and if I find something really interesting I'll post it tonight. (One decent looking short opportunity however that caught my eye is WFMI.)

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

My Trade Candidates for 3/22/2007

So, one of the frustrating aspects of trading is when you make a good call on an entry then get shaken out before the real move in the direction you were expecting to happen. Well, that happened to me in spades today, unfortunately. However, there is no point in complaining so here are some trade set-ups for tomorrow.

In addition to these, I will be paying attention to the following: ASCA, BOOM, EVVV, FOSL, FSLR, NTES (counter trend - be careful); ONXX, PENN, SNCI, UHCO.

I think we found their stops

Based on the violent upside response to the FED statement, I think we found out where a lot of the shorts' stops were. Now things should really get interesting! I'll post my trade candidates in an hour or so.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

My Trade Candidates for 3/21/2007

Disclaimers first: I'm currently long ASCA and HLIT which were included in the 3/20/07 setup sheet below, and are included above as well. I may add to my ASCA position above the entry price stated above depending on how the overall sector is looking. You may have noticed that BYD had a huge up day today, so I am paying special attention to the gaming sector. Other candidates in that space with charts that interest me are PENN and MPEL, and to a lesser extent, PGIC. MPEL is a counter trend trade but appears like it may be ready to turn up with the strength in the sector.

I should also point out that FFHL is a counter-trend trade and therefore is probably higher risk than a trend-following setup, but this stock put in an outside day up today and appears to be ready to turn up. Like MPEL it's a recently public stock and may be ready to find it's legs.

A few others I'm keeping any eye on: BOOM, ECGI, HLTH, IFSIA, NYMX, ONXX and SNCI.

Monday, March 19, 2007

My Trade Candidates for 3/20/2007

Here are my trade candidates for Tuesday. There are several longs, but no shorts as I don't see any good short candidates today. For the time being I am including all potential trade candidates, but in the future I may limit the lists to 3-5 tickers each in order to prevent the lists from being unreasonably long. Feedback on whether or not I should limit the lists is welcome, of course!

Beginning today I am also including my watch list which consists of stocks that are not ready for a low-risk entry but which appear close. I monitor this list of stocks throughout the day and when a given stock appears ready for a potential trade, I move it over to the appropriate primary list (long or short, as the case may be).
Here is the watch list:

Friday, March 16, 2007

Am I a Blogger now?

Well, here it is! My first-ever blog post. I have to say that I'm excited to finally be part of the blog community and to utilize this excellent tool to share my ideas on trading, views on the market, and from time to time, thoughts on life.