NexusFi: Find Your Edge


Home Menu

 



Welcome to NexusFi: the best trading community on the planet, with over 150,000 members Sign Up Now, It is Free
  • Genuine reviews from real traders, not fake reviews from stealth vendors
  • Quality education from leading professional traders
  • We are a friendly, helpful, and positive community
  • We do not tolerate rude behavior, trolling, or vendors advertising in posts
  • We are here to help, just let us know what you need
You'll need to register in order to view the content of the threads and start contributing to our community.  It's free for basic access, or support us by becoming an Elite Member -- see if you qualify for a discount below.

-- Big Mike, Site Administrator

(If you already have an account, login at the top of the page)


Day trading - Considering throwing in the towel for good.


Discussion in Traders Hideout

Updated
      Top Posters
    1. looks_one Howard Roark with 35 posts (54 thanks)
    2. looks_two Tymbeline with 4 posts (7 thanks)
    3. looks_3 blackgrey45 with 4 posts (9 thanks)
    4. looks_4 DavidHP with 3 posts (8 thanks)
      Best Posters
    1. looks_one truckertrader with 4 thanks per post
    2. looks_two DavidHP with 2.7 thanks per post
    3. looks_3 blackgrey45 with 2.3 thanks per post
    4. looks_4 Howard Roark with 1.5 thanks per post
    1. trending_up 4,483 views
    2. thumb_up 146 thanks given
    3. group 21 followers
    1. forum 70 posts
    2. attach_file 2 attachments




 
Search this Thread

Day trading - Considering throwing in the towel for good.

(login for full post details)
  #1 (permalink)
Howard Roark
Oslo Norway
 
Posts: 422 since Aug 2018
Thanks Given: 372
Thanks Received: 500

Hello guys,

After over 10 years of pursuing the goal of becoming a consistent profitable day trader I'm finally considering throwing in the towel for good and moving on.

Quick summary:

- I've been a full time trader 3 times, but invariably had to get back to the work force as I couldn't make ends meet. The first time I was totally clueless. Probably the second time, too. The third time I was in a much better spot, but still way undercapitalized.

- Virtually all my free time and money spent pursuing trading studying, researching and actual trading.

- Paid a firm to create a custom statistical application based on my methodology which I use for my trading.

- Tons of back-testing.

- Hundreds of live trading days. I don't have the exact number, but I wouldn't be surprised if I exceeded 1000 by now in total.

There have been some breaks along the way and I've sort of given up earlier, but the markets have always sucked me back in. For the last 5 or 6 years I've been focusing on essentially the same method and have not been jumping from one thing to the other. I've had a very focused approach and I've felt I made progress, but maybe I'm fooling myself.

Results?

I'm at a point where the market feels like a very familiar place and I pretty much have a good grasp of what's possible and most likely on any given day.

I've had really good periods where I've both tripled and quadrupled my account over a period of months with few losing days. But invariably, the drawdown comes and it tends to accelerate and I just liquidate my account before it's all gone. Then I start over again a bit later and tend to do well early on, but the same pattern tends to repeat.

If I never had any success I'm sure I'd given up sooner, but the fact that I've had glimpses of success along the way and feel that I'm able to read the markets supported by statistical data have given me enough hope that maybe I have something worthwhile and shouldn't give up just yet.

Why give up?

One of the things that have been weighing me recently is the opportunity cost of pursuing this. All the time spent maintaining a trading business and actually trading is considerable. And that's time that could be spent doing something else that may be more worthwhile.

Sure, I love the markets and all that, but at the end of the day the goal is to make money.

It's quite possible that if I cut my leverage by one tenth I would be consistently profitable, but I'm just not sure it's worth my time to be honest. Might as well invest or swing trade instead, then.

Maybe the problem is simply that I'm undercapitalized and expecting too much.

I've heard of people who spent around 10 years or even more before they finally nailed it down, so maybe it's premature to give up after all this time, but the years fly by fast as you get older and it would suck to spend another 5 years and still be at the same place and having closed other opportunities for good. While it's true that some might nail it down after 10 years, I'm sure there are also stories of people who spend 20 years and still didn't make it.

Not sure what I want with this post, but it's good getting it off my chest as nobody in my real life can relate. Maybe newbies can also read it and consider it a word of warning about how difficult this really is.

Reply With Quote
The following 12 users say Thank You to Howard Roark for this post:

Can you help answer these questions
from other members on NexusFi?
MNQ ticks before and after NVDA earnings
Emini and Emicro Index
How to create strategy utilizing divergence between two …
Sierra Chart
BollingerPro discussion
The Elite Circle
NT8 PnF Crowd Funding
NinjaTrader
Offset Breakeven Stop Order - IntraBarOrderGeneration
EasyLanguage Programming
 

(login for full post details)
  #2 (permalink)
 
blackgrey45's Avatar
 blackgrey45 
Marco Island, FL
Legendary Market Wizard
 
Experience: Beginner
Platform: Sierra Chart
Broker: AMP
Trading: MES MCL
Posts: 595 since Jul 2022
Thanks Given: 703
Thanks Received: 724

I understand your situation. I have been trading futures since 2010 and am still not profitable. If you have other activities that you enjoy more and are more successful at then quitting might be the right thing for you. I still trade because there is nothing else I would rather be doing.

Visit my NexusFi Trade Journal Reply With Quote
The following 5 users say Thank You to blackgrey45 for this post:
(login for full post details)
  #3 (permalink)
 
DavidHP's Avatar
 DavidHP 
New Orleans, La (Mardi Gras City)
Legendary Market Wizard
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: NinjaTrader
Broker: Ninjatrader / Optimus Futures / AmpFutures
Trading: ES / 6E / 6B / CL
Posts: 1,538 since Aug 2009
Thanks Given: 11,191
Thanks Received: 2,667


Perhaps you are not a trader?

Or perhaps your time has not come...

A wise person once told me:
"The flowers of tomorrow are the seeds of today"

I have traded off and on since 1995 (maybe before but who cares )
At first I was a total mess but I am very conservative and have survived the rough times and the good times.
At first I wanted to quit but did not.
I was reminded of the seed.

If you planted a seed and never saw any growth how long would you continue to water it?

I thought a lot about that in my early years.
I studied, created indicators, strategies, watched videos, watched charts...
You know the drill.

How long should I water this seed and not see any growth?


Chinese Bamboo Tree from Seed
Chinese bamboo tree can take up to 5 years to grow.
The tree requires a lot of water, sunlight, and nutrients to grow, and during the first four years of its life.
It may not appear to be growing much at all.
In the fifth year, the tree can grow up to 80 feet in just six weeks.
This growth spurt is due to the fact that the tree spends the first four years developing a strong root system.

Perhaps that is you. HOWEVER, if you don't love trading and need or want to do something else. Do IT !!!.

Look at my signature below.
Sometimes it takes more rain and more thunderstorms to learn to dance in them and enjoy it.

Rejoice in the Thunderstorms of Life . . .
Knowing it's not about Clouds or Wind. . .
But Learning to Dance in the Rain ! ! !
Follow me on Twitter Reply With Quote
The following 5 users say Thank You to DavidHP for this post:
(login for full post details)
  #4 (permalink)
Howard Roark
Oslo Norway
 
Posts: 422 since Aug 2018
Thanks Given: 372
Thanks Received: 500


blackgrey45 View Post
I understand your situation. I have been trading futures since 2010 and am still not profitable. If you have other activities that you enjoy more and are more successful at then quitting might be the right thing for you. I still trade because there is nothing else I would rather be doing.

Honestly, it's been over 10 years since I first started out pursuing day trading, but there's been some breaks along the way, but 10 years of focused efforts should be fairly accurate.

For the last few years I've been more of a hobbyist. That's not to say I've not been taking it seriously, but I've had a full time job here in Norway and day trade the US session in the evening after work as the time zone difference allows for that. So, pretty much all evenings after work and research/studying on the weekends.

The problem with day trading from my perspective is that it's simply a very marginal business. You're pretty much a winner or you're not. Unless you're trading with very low leverage - the margin of error is simply small. Of course, I could de-leverage and get some income going, but I'm not sure that's worthwhile. For day trading to make sense, IMO, there have to be superior returns compared to other trading styles.

My initial experience with trading was actually swing trading stocks and I made considerable amount of money doing that at the time, but when I realized I didn't know much and it was time to educate myself I did for some reason get sucked into the world of day trading and have been pursuing that ever since.

So, where you're at after 10 years? How do you feel having been at it for 10 years and still not profitable? Are you still not making any money at all or is it like me where you feel close and have good periods along the way?

Knowing myself, it's quite possible that I will only leave it behind for a period and return later as I've always done in the past. But I've been thinking that maybe it makes more sense for me to wait with day trading until I have a larger account to trade.

Reply With Quote
The following 2 users say Thank You to Howard Roark for this post:
(login for full post details)
  #5 (permalink)
Howard Roark
Oslo Norway
 
Posts: 422 since Aug 2018
Thanks Given: 372
Thanks Received: 500


DavidHP View Post
Perhaps you are not a trader?

Or perhaps your time has not come...

A wise person once told me:
"The flowers of tomorrow are the seeds of today"

I have traded off and on since 1995 (maybe before but who cares )
At first I was a total mess but I am very conservative and have survived the rough times and the good times.
At first I wanted to quit but did not.
I was reminded of the seed.

If you planted a seed and never saw any growth how long would you continue to water it?

I thought a lot about that in my early years.
I studied, created indicators, strategies, watched videos, watched charts...
You know the drill.

How long should I water this seed and not see any growth?



Perhaps that is you. HOWEVER, if you don't love trading and need or want to do something else. Do IT !!!.

Look at my signature below.
Sometimes it takes more rain and more thunderstorms to learn to dance in them and enjoy it.

Thank you for your post, DavidHP.

You surely are a veteran by now.

I'm not sure if it's rude to ask, but I'll take my chances. After all this time - where are you at now as a day trader? Are you making superior returns, i.e., more than you would have simply by investing or say swing trading?

Reply With Quote
(login for full post details)
  #6 (permalink)
Howard Roark
Oslo Norway
 
Posts: 422 since Aug 2018
Thanks Given: 372
Thanks Received: 500

One of the problems I think is making things worse for many would-be-traders is the lack of transparency in this business and all the gurus who pretend to be profitable, when in truth they're not.

This could be vendors who are selling products/courses, but it can also be regular guys who just enjoy posting and being the guru people ask for advice on a message board. I know one guy in particular (and I will not mention any names) who seems (and probably is) extremely knowledgeable, but I found a track record of one of his automated systems and it was actually losing money.

I know first hand that there are many so called gurus who pose as profitable traders, yet they never made any money at all. These people tend to "teach" for free and enjoy being gurus, but they're only misleading people if they don't have the results to back it up.

The problem is you can be extremely knowledgeable and experienced, but that doesn't necessarily translate into profitable trading.

Reply With Quote
The following 4 users say Thank You to Howard Roark for this post:
(login for full post details)
  #7 (permalink)
 
DavidHP's Avatar
 DavidHP 
New Orleans, La (Mardi Gras City)
Legendary Market Wizard
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: NinjaTrader
Broker: Ninjatrader / Optimus Futures / AmpFutures
Trading: ES / 6E / 6B / CL
Posts: 1,538 since Aug 2009
Thanks Given: 11,191
Thanks Received: 2,667


Howard Roark View Post
I'm not sure if it's rude to ask, but I'll take my chances. After all this time - where are you at now as a day trader? Are you making superior returns, i.e., more than you would have simply by investing or say swing trading?

I'm retired. My current job is building a home on a Caribbean beach.
I can't say I've made a fortune but I can say I'm successful, but this is not about me, it is about you.
(p.s. I never liked swing trading it is not my style)


Howard Roark View Post
My initial experience with trading was actually swing trading stocks and I made considerable amount of money doing that

This was the point of my reply above.
If you don't love trading or this type of trading... Why continue?
If you can't 'Dance in the rain"... Dance in a ballroom.

BUT... DANCE !!!

If you continue doing what you've been doing...
Will you reach your life goals?
Will you be happy?

You are the source of your solution.
No one else should make that decision for you.

Rejoice in the Thunderstorms of Life . . .
Knowing it's not about Clouds or Wind. . .
But Learning to Dance in the Rain ! ! !
Follow me on Twitter Reply With Quote
(login for full post details)
  #8 (permalink)
Howard Roark
Oslo Norway
 
Posts: 422 since Aug 2018
Thanks Given: 372
Thanks Received: 500


DavidHP View Post
I'm retired. My current job is building a home on a Caribbean beach.
I can't say I've made a fortune but I can say I'm successful, but this is not about me, it is about you.

Well, sure, but it would be very helpful for me to know what's actually possible and not. Like I alluded to earlier, I think many of us retail traders come into this with unrealistic expectations and a lot of blind faith. At the end of the day, I never saw anyone's broker account or track record. I always figured many of the posters on various boards were actually rich traders, but I'm honestly having doubts these days.

What if the truth was that 95 % of would-be traders are not successful after 10 + years? And among the 5 % who are, they're not making that much? Maybe it's like 1 % that actually make a killing?


DavidHP View Post
This was the point of my reply above.
If you don't love trading or this type of trading... Why continue?
If you can't 'Dance in the rain"... Dance in a ballroom.

BUT... DANCE !!!

If you continue doing what you've been doing...
Will you reach your life goals?
Will you be happy?

You are the source of your solution.
No one else should make that decision for you.

I do love trading for sure, but I also love playing computer games. I haven't done the latter in years since the markets have been my focus and if I start playing games again it may easily be the only thing I do. I love playing the guitar, too, but between work and trading there's just not much time left in the day.

Point is - loving it is not enough. For me, I don't want trading to be an expensive or low paid hobby. I want to make good money doing it.

Reply With Quote
(login for full post details)
  #9 (permalink)
 
DavidHP's Avatar
 DavidHP 
New Orleans, La (Mardi Gras City)
Legendary Market Wizard
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: NinjaTrader
Broker: Ninjatrader / Optimus Futures / AmpFutures
Trading: ES / 6E / 6B / CL
Posts: 1,538 since Aug 2009
Thanks Given: 11,191
Thanks Received: 2,667


Howard Roark View Post
What if the truth was that 95 % of would-be traders are not successful after 10 + years? And among the 5 % who are, they're not making that much? Maybe it's like 1 % that actually make a killing?

I do love trading for sure, but I also love playing computer games.

Point is - loving it is not enough. For me, I don't want trading to be an expensive or low paid hobby. I want to make good money doing it.

Being a gamer is part of the issue.
I am also a gamer.
The problem is, trading is not a game it is real life.
If you die, you are dead and can't regenerate.
Gaming usually makes you overtrade and trading requires a different discipline.


DavidHP View Post
You are the source of your solution.

Try focusing on YOU and quit worrying about what OTHER traders are doing.
THEY will not make $$ for YOU.

If I make one dollar or one million dollars, that will not help your trading.
Showing you my broker account or track record will not improve your trading.

ONLY YOU can improve your trading.
No seminar, webinar, viewing my charts, will make you a better trader.
You need to find something that works for you and swing trading may be your answer.

YOU are the Solution and the Problem!

Rejoice in the Thunderstorms of Life . . .
Knowing it's not about Clouds or Wind. . .
But Learning to Dance in the Rain ! ! !
Follow me on Twitter Reply With Quote
The following 3 users say Thank You to DavidHP for this post:
(login for full post details)
  #10 (permalink)
 
deaddog's Avatar
 deaddog 
Prince George BC Canada
Legendary Market Wizard
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: BMO / Questrade
Broker: BMO / Questrade
Trading: Stocks
Posts: 1,062 since May 2013
Thanks Given: 157
Thanks Received: 3,185



Howard Roark View Post
I think many of us retail traders come into this with unrealistic expectations and a lot of blind faith.

You haven't mentioned what your expectations are. You also mentioned you might be under-capitalized and that you needed marrgin to achieve your targets.

More info would be helpful.

"The days when I keep my gratitude higher than my expectations, I have really good days" RW Hubbard
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users say Thank You to deaddog for this post:





Last Updated on September 10, 2023


© 2023 NexusFi™, s.a., All Rights Reserved.
Av Ricardo J. Alfaro, Century Tower, Panama City, Panama, Ph: +507 833-9432 (Panama and Intl), +1 888-312-3001 (USA and Canada)
All information is for educational use only and is not investment advice. There is a substantial risk of loss in trading commodity futures, stocks, options and foreign exchange products. Past performance is not indicative of future results.
About Us - Contact Us - Site Rules, Acceptable Use, and Terms and Conditions - Privacy Policy - Downloads - Top
no new posts