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Starting from scratch.

Mar 10 2012 at 10:42
Hello, my name is Hobart and I am about to embark on a journey. My goal is to learn the Forex market from scratch. The hope is that I'll find something that excites me other than playing golf. It's become quite clear that golf will not pay the bills; I can't stand my sales job, and things need to change.

Obviously this is going to be a difficult task and it may never lead to something I can do as a career but at least I will have tried. In no way am I writing this for validation or any other vein reason. Simply put I'm writing this so that I can always come back to see what my thoughts were during this process. Like anything sometimes you'll need to get back to the basics and I hope this will provide me with a sort of 'live journal'.

To begin I want to state that my knowledge of this market is next to nil, I've been aware of it for years but never bothered to learn anything about it. Previously I've been licensed with a Series 7 as well as the 66 so I've always had an interest in the markets but never enjoyed working with clients so I changed directions. That being said though I've always had an interest in working within the markets in some way.

When posting here I will be brutally honest with myself, you as a reader may look at my decisions from time to time in an unfavorable light, that is okay but if nothing else please try to keep the comments constructive in nature and positive. That being said though I will be posting any information I find useful in my education, anything that happens during demo and live trading (when I get there) as well as all reasoning and results of every trade. Win or lose, I'll do it in public.

To start my education I've decided on three resources that I will consider my 'elementary school' education. To begin my education I've begun studying the training on www.forexonlinelearning.com. So far it has been very helpful in explaining the basics. In the past 5 days I've made it through approximately half the material and taken roughly 2 notepads worth of notes. I'll be working to try and digest all of this course by the end of this weekend.

At this point I've also ordered the following books:

Economics Explained
by Peter Maunder

How To Read The Financial Page
by Michael Brett

Technical Trading Online (Wiley Online Trad...
by Jerold Roth; Trader X

The New Elliott Wave Rule - Achieve Definitive Wave Counts
TS Hennessy

My goal with these books will be to add to my knowledge base and keep my mind focused on the markets, my goal will be to dedicate 2 hours o each of these books Tuesday-Friday and one hour on Monday.

Monday morning will be spent reviewing my notes from www.forexonlinelearning.com. In addition I will begin working through all of the training provided on www.babypips.com on Tuesday morning at 8am,. Tuesdays thru Thursdays will be spent from 8am - noon dedicated to my Forex education before I start my income job. Fridays will be spent from 8am - 3pm on FX education.

Although the training on BabyPips should only take me about a week the combination with the books will push that out to 2-3 weeks. Throughout this process I will update this page with what I've learned and the insights I've had, again so that I can always go back to basics.

Upon completion of the BabyPips training I'll be moving on to the plan outlined on www.prop-traders.net. It is my hope that with the combination of these three resources as well as additional reading I'll have a solid trading plan in place that is focused on money management, minimizing risk, a beginning trade philosophy and a confident outlook.

All tolled I would like to complete my initial education within the next 90 days. From there my hope is to have a profitable demo account and begin live trading.

Thanks for taking some time to read all of this and I look forward to sharing my wins, losses and experiences in general. Wish me luck; we all need a little bit here and there.

Mar 10 2012 at 22:52
Today I will be focusing on the following sections at www.forexonlinelearning.com:

Trading the News
Basics of Fundamentals
Economics & Fundamentals
Supply and Demand in Forex

This will leave me with 4 more sections to be completed on Sunday and allow me to move on to reinforcing the basics on BabyPips on Tuesday.
Mar 11 2012 at 07:50
Started the above mentioned sections today at 2pm, finally closing it up now just before 10pm. Learned quite a bit regarding fundamental analysis but see that this is an endless learning process and that gets me motivated to consume more information.

Will need to look for a tutorial on how to read and interpret the COT report better though. The information on www.forexonlinelearning.com is good but nowhere near detailed enough for my tastes. Was able to locate the report online though and sign up to receive the report to my e-mail immediately upon release.

Early on if I had to say one way or another how I am feeling regarding my personal style I've come up with the following:

Fundamental Analysis will be used to identify entry points in to specific pairs.

Technical Analysis will then be needed to determine the appropriate time to enter each trade and take profits or curtail losses. With regards to the technical analysis I will focus on the 5m chart and look to confirm trends using the 15m and 1h charts.

Early technical indicators that I will be focusing on include:

Relative Strength Index (RSI)
Moving Average Convergence-Divergence (MACD)
Bollinger Bands

I'll also be trying to learn more about Elliott Wave Theory and in that interest I will be replacing the book

The New Elliott Wave Rule - Achieve Definitive Wave Counts
TS Hennessy


Elliott Wave Principle: Key to Market Behavior
by Robert R. Prechter, Jr.& A.J. Frost

before moving on to the previously mentioned book.

From here I will complete the following sections on www.forexonlinelearning.com tomorrow:

Forex Correlations
Major Economies
Trading Plan Development

Monday will be spent reviewing all of the information contained in this course before moving on to BabyPips on Tuesday as a way to ingrain the basic information I've learned so far.
Mar 11 2012 at 20:35
Wow! you are doing your home work. I just have a little sujestion on charts. Those small time frames will put a lot of stress on you.
You might start of with H4,D1 charts. To much noise in small time frames.
Pip On
Mar 12 2012 at 22:04
Hey Paddlepuss,

I'll definitely be doing some testing with demo accounts on longer time frame charts as well. As far as what I wrote above that is just my initial ideas about how I will operate. At the end of the day though whatever TF helps me produce the desired results will be the one I work with. Thanks for the suggestions.

Mar 15 2012 at 07:09
Things are going well so far, finished up the ForexOnlineLearning site yesterday. Got a bit behind because we had a 60 degree day here in Michigan on Sunday and that required me getting out of my house for a bit to enjoy it. Started the BabyPips stuff and so far it seems more or less like a re-tread of what I've already done. Hopefully there will be at least a little new information there but if not it should help to reinforce what I've already learned. Tonight I'll be trying to complete at least the 'Elementary' and 'Middle School' sections on BabyPips.

Still waiting on the books I've ordered to arrive but big props to Amazon, $26 for four different books is a heck of a deal. In the meantime I've been reading Wealth of Nations (Adam Smith) on my kindle at night and outlining the beginning of my Trading Plan as it stands so far. Once I have a complete plan in place I'll be posting it here for everyone to review. When I finish Wealth of Nations I'll continue my basic Economics education with the following books in order:

The Economic Consequences of the Peace by John Maynard Keynes

The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money by John Maynard Keynes

Monetary Theory and the Trade Cycle by F.A. Hayek

A Monetary History of the United States by Milton Friedman and Anna Schwartz

On Keynesian Economics and the Economics of Keynes by Axel Leijonhufvud

Economic Forces at Work by Armen Alchian

Information and Coordination by Axel Leijonhufvud

Figure I'll focus my nightly reading on the cornerstones works of Economics and continue my reading of market related work during the time I've set aside to trade (8am to Noon EST) when I get to that point.

Anywhere that's where I'm at so far so I'll just keep plugging away.
Mar 15 2012 at 21:28
Perhaps the following books could be of interest to you:
Market Wizards (all 3 of them - 3rd one is not as good, but there are one or two very good interviews
Reminiscences of a stock operator
Way of the Turtle

Just my opinion, but it looks like you are over-complicating things. Trading should be really simple. The more variables you add, the more convoluted and less robust things become.

Have you started with a real account yet? If not, I would suggest starting an account with an amount of real money that is big enough that you would feel pain by losing it, but not so big that it affects your lifestyle.
Mar 15 2012 at 22:28
Hi Trixifx,

Thanks for the input, the books you mentioned are definitely on my long term reading list. As I'm sure you can tell I like to read a lot as it is.

As far as over complicating thing I'm going to have to disagree on that one. I'm looking at what I am doing right now as basic training. It would not make sense to me to jump in to a trillion dollar market without first knowing the rules of engagement. It's possible I could read 200 books it doesn't mean I am going to try and take every little thing from each one and use it all. It has more to do with being fully aware of what I am seeing and reading and having a clear understanding of how it will affect my trades. That being said though I agree that trading should be simple and that is why I am building a plan, if the plan works my goal is to take the emotion out of my trades and stick with the system I put together.

As far as starting a real account the answer is no, not yet. My plan is to start trading a demo account at the end of the month based on the trading plan I am working on now. Up until now I have just been trading a few demo accounts with no real direction or plan. Main goal has been to try out a few platforms and isolate the one I'd like to work with and from there learning the ins and outs of order entry stop losses etc. The last thing I want to do is lose a bunch of cash because I wasn't sure how to enter my order properly. I've already had two trades go south because I entered an order I thought would do one thing and was incorrect so I got burned.

I'll get to the real trading, just have to do it at my own pace and start when I am comfortable.
Mar 16 2012 at 13:20
I see you also list a lot of economics book. I can't remember much of economics from university, but I do remember the name John Maynard Keynes. After I started trading, I found a quote of his which goes something like this 'The markets can stay irrational for longer than you can stay solvent.' 😇

Regarding demo - I'd avoid it at all costs. The emotional impact is completely different. Generally with demo if something doesn't go as planned, it's pretty easy to start fresh. Real trading doesn't work that way. Perseverance is absolutely critical in this game.

You can start at OANDA with as little as $100 and they offer the most flexible position sizing. To date, you have probably spent more on books.

Edit: Just saw your comment on getting burned on those two trades. With OANDA you can trade in position sizes of 1 unit. Thus if you do get burned the effect is very small. Initially, I always tested my trades by betting 1 unit.
Mar 28 2012 at 02:58
Still working through all of these books I've gotten, taking a bit longer than anticipated as they are not exactly light reading. ON another note I'm starting to test out the different platforms I've found so far. So far my favorite platform is Tradestation II, second would be the Viking platform through FxDD but they don't exactly have the greatest reviews from other traders. Tried the MT4 platform and I honestly don't love it, I don like the ability to run EA's but I'm not really planning to trade using EA's so I'm not sure whether that will turn out to be important to me at this point.

Does anyone reading have any opinions regarding Tradestation vs. MT4? The Viking platform is essentially out at this point because it is only available through FxDD.

At this point I've ruled out FxDD, FXCM, Oanda and a few others as far as brokers go. From the due diligence I've done so far I am leaning towards ATC Brokers for a multitude of reasons. Some of those include:

Low Spreads
Fixed Commission per micro-lot
Excellent reviews online regarding the actual trading as well as customer service

If anyone has anything to add to this regarding platforms and or brokers please feel free to comment.

In other news I'll be posting some of what I've put together for my trading plan soon. Happy trading everyone!
Mar 29 2012 at 07:40

   paddleplus posted:
Wow! you are doing your home work. I just have a little sujestion on charts. Those small time frames will put a lot of stress on you.
You might start of with H4,D1 charts. To much noise in small time frames.
Pip On

I trade 15min, it's a good balance between scalping and trading, I find the larger the time frame the larger the capital required to maintain money management rules (in my case) and usually equals less trade executions. A must for your bookshelf is - statistics (nothing major required, just intro stuff), as well as probability theory (this will help a lot when it comes to money management and position sizing and placement).

As to Brokers, I am with Alpari UK. Low spreads, no commissions, and extremely helpful (touch wood - I usually praise companies on good service, only to have them turn bad the next month, so let me rephrase - 'extremely helpful and friendly thus far' ;-))

Platforms are more dependent on broker than personal choice, most brokerages make use of MetaTrader and proprietary platforms linked to specific account types. I would suggest picking your broker first, then see what platforms they offer.

Side note: You WILL use an EA eventually, don't think of it as an automated trader, think of it as a helping hand (auto stop loss, close out runaway negative orders...) whatever the case, it doesn't have to only open trades to be useful.
For every loss there should be at least an equal and opposite profit.
W.Wagner (boxbreakout22)
Mar 30 2012 at 10:25
Some tips for you:

1. Do not open Real account becauese first you need:

a) Your own Trading Plan
b) MoneyManagement Rules (For Example: Do not Risk of 50% from all your money because you think it will be Win trade today)
c) Your (or not your own) Strategy with trading rules. It means you know Why you Open some Order,
this Order must be with Take Profit and Stop Loss
d) Your trading rules must be the same all time. (This means you can not Open some Orders because you have free time right now and wont to make some money)
e) Open Cent Account with $10 (Balance: 1000 Cent) and try it minimum 3 Month with your Strategie/Trading Rules.

If after 3 month you will be in Profit (Example: +15, +10, +20%) you can open Real account $1000 and trade with the same Strategy/Rules

If you want more as 1 Strategy - register 2 Accounts and wright down all your Rules for every Strategy and do not brake this Rules.

I pay for this Tips more as $10.000 real money some years ago. (My first real accouts goes 0...)
Hope this help you to :)

Mar 31 2012 at 00:33
Well guys I had responded to these last few posts with a long detailed response but I deleted it by accident so I will keep it simple this time.

a) Just finished writing my first draft trading plan and will be posting it here on Monday for everyone to review
b) Money management is all detailed in the plan and will be capped at 2% risk per position
c) All entries and exits are laid out clearly and simply within the plan and the 4H MACD strategy originally authored by Phillip Nell
d) All entries are defined precisely and no live trades will ever be entered on a whim. If I feel like gambling I will trade demo or play some poker.
e) This I will not be doing as I don't feel I can properly trade my strategy from a micro platform, I will however trade my exact strategy in demo and will use a forward testing method. My trading plan will also take in to account and draw downs on my capital in both demo and live trading.

When I am comfortable I will open a live account but not until then. I'm figuring this is at a minimum of 90 days out from now.
Steve B (stevetrade)
Apr 05 2012 at 12:22
It sounds like you've done some good research there it will be interesting to hear how it turns out for you.
Best regards Steve
11:15, restate my assumptions: 1. Mathematics is the language of nature. 2. Everything around us can be represented and understood through numbers. 3. If you graph these numbers, patterns emerge. Therefore: There are patterns everywhere in nature.
Apr 06 2012 at 21:31
Looking more and more like I will have to move this thread over to another forum as this one does not seem to allow me to add files to it. Have a completed first draft of my trading plan finished that I was planning to upload but I get error messages every time I try. Also have results from the first week of forward testing my strategy I had intended to post but I'm having difficulty uploading any sort of files.

Finished the week well though with four total trades, three of which were profitable and one that hit my SL. The losing trade should not have really been made as I didn't follow my own strategy and took a flyer (lesson learned). I'm sure this will be a lesson I have to learn a few more times the hard way but hopefully not too many.

Final tally for the week on demo:

Starting Balance: $50,000.00
Ending balance: $52,641.23

P/L: $2,641.23
Total Pips: 93.7
Apr 06 2012 at 21:37
Okay it appears I can now upload files so here is the first draft of my Trading Plan. This was completed based off the template put together by Tim Wilcox in 2005 and can be found at the link below.

Keep in mind I have not checked this for spelling and grammatical errors so anyone who has a comment about a word being misspelled please feel free to save it. As far as targets and the like I realize that they may be a bit on the high side but they are mine and until I prove to myself that they are out of reach I will stick with them.

Other than that I am continuing to read and educate myself on everything market related and will just keep plugging away. I'll also be updating this Trading Plan as I see fit and will post all updates in a timely manner.


첨부 파일:

Apr 07 2012 at 01:36
Really starting to hate how this things causes errors when trying to attach files. Pissing me off!

첨부 파일:

Apr 09 2012 at 00:07
Looking more and more like USD/JPY is setting up to be the first buy of the new week. Currently it's sitting about 30 pips above support. RSI is at 33 and change and the MACD has a nice rounded top, the only downside is the reading is a bit lower than I'd like at .11. Looking for the confirmation in the next 2 4H candles.

Little bit of news coming out of Japan in about 5 hours so will look to see if that has any affect and help get the push higher going.

Will post the details and chart if I end up pulling the trigger on it.
Apr 09 2012 at 13:13
Taking a pass on the USD/JPY trade. Market is just floating along sideways at the moment so not a lot of reason to think it's going to head one direction or another at this point. Long term I think the dollar is headed back closer to 84 but for now we wait. Biggest reason I decided to hold off though was that my MACD reading was short of where I would have wanted it to be. Looking for something below -15 and in this case -11 was as far as we got.

Might keep eyes peeled for a sell opportunity later in the week on this pair around 81.75 or so but it will have to be a no brainer to go against the trend upwards. At this point none of my other pairs are lining up for any action either so we will remain in a holding period. Better to make no trade than to make the wrong trade just for the sake of trading.
Apr 16 2012 at 10:24
Hi Daniel,

Busy reading through your plan, and have some comments you might want to consider.

I'll quote you / give ref, then add my comment.

'2% total account growth per trade' - This seems backward, should be 'maximum risk 2% equity', growth will follow. If you are going to concentrate on growth over risk, you are looking for trouble. Manage risk first and let growth follow.

1.5 makes no sense, make it simpler like 2% of equity over initial capital (so if your total deposits were $1000 and equity now stands at $1040, you can withdraw $20, leaving you with $1020... if equity is bellow $1000 (due to draw down / open trades), then you have negative income (cannot withdraw funds).

2.2 should be 98% (remember RISK RISK RISK ;-))

3.3 should be 15min, not 5min... 15min is 'clean data' - you trading average 2 trades per day? stay off 1min and 5 min, that's scalper territory ;-)

6.4 can go to 20% max

6.5 The ratio will only work if all your trades closed on equal negative and positive amounts (eg. 5 winning trades of $10 and one losing trade of $60 is bad, regardless of your ratio).

6.7 should be 2% of equity, not capital.

7.2 Based on your strategy I would not trade news at all, refer to 5.1 C. and ensure your positions are closed before major news events (medium and high impact)... by the time you get the result of a 'negative' news result, it's too late... the market would have reacted before you even knew there was bad news.

7.3 see 7.2

8.2 put RSI on Month / Week chart as well, RSI on Month / Week of 80 and on 4H of 20 will see your trades whipsaw. ;-)
Also, I would say RSI 40/60 on Month / Week chart and 20/80 on 4 Hour or max 30/70.

10.1 Take your demo performance and halve it for live. Factors such as re-quotes, adjusted live swaps etc don't fall into the demo range (the broker will adjust settings based on actual events, protecting themselves as well, demo servers are set and forget. So an amazing result over a month on a strategy with demo, could potentially kill your live account in a week. (remember, on demo it's you against the server... on live it's you against me, millions of other traders, and the man on the street exchanging his money for holiday... and in certain cases your own broker... it's a different ball game.

10.2 you will be banned more than you will be trading :-D

I see no terms like 'hedging' or 'diversification'... every entry must have a backup, what is yours?

Hope this will give you some more tips and hints to improve on your strategy. Remember, your strategy is never complete, it matures and changes over time... now when I look back, I think, well, what the heck was I thinking back then!, that would never work! and see how my changes have made improved results.

Keep us posted... it's great to see the progress.



For every loss there should be at least an equal and opposite profit.
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