One more year has passed and it's the time when as a tradition we look back to learn lessons from all that we've been through. It was a good year for me in terms of developing as a trader. I had this resolution for the passed year - to develop good, stable and profitable style of day trading which now, looking back, I can say I succeeded to do; the shift from demo account into real money trading was a significant step changing my perspectives and better understanding of trading process.
The biggest challenge that I've found is the psychological part of the game. Discipline is everything, the hardest thing is not letting your emotions drive the trading and balance between not getting too emotional and not allowing to get too careless. It is very important to take your profits as well as take losses and make sure your profits overtake losses. This passed year, I think, I have learned how to cut my losses however still I have to work on this aspect way more; speaking about the profits, I managed to reach 6 wins/ 1 loss out of 7 trades with a profit factor 1.58. The problem here is that I don't let my winners run and take profit too early. So this would be one of the things that I will need to elaborate and work out during the new year.
Describing my trading style, I am a day trader - I can't keep open positions over night. I hate this feeling of not having control. As I said before, I do enjoy fast paced environment, do what you do during the trading day, close all positions, have cash overnight and sleep well. Also I am a day trend follower and I feel more comfortable shorting the market, than being long. Maybe that is why, I have more short trades than long ones even during such great year for S&P 500. Some statistics here:
Short Positions (won %): (88.68%) Long Positions (won %): (77.78%)
Profit Trades (% of total): (84.27%) Loss trades (% of total): (15.73%)
So being trend follower in terms of day trends as well as scalper, this year I found the greatest indicator or charting tool I immediately implemented and started to use, my favourite Ichimoku Cloud. Once one learn how to apply it in trading, it offers great overall picture on the underlying instrument no matter of the trading time frame, clearly showing the support, resistance, momentum and the trend and its strength. When I started trading, I used to apply Bollinger Bands with two Moving Averages -- a shorter and a longer one; however during ranging markets it traps the trader and gets them chopped big way; on the other hand Ichimoku Cloud uses similar shorter and longer MAs which to confirm entry points, it also shows the strength of the trend. ADX is another indicator that I use - also showing trend strength, As to monitor trend exhaustion, I use Parabolic SAR. Also I look for good volumes and volatility, need good price action and fast trades.
Okay that would be some short retrospective of 2014, something to keep in this journal and learn lessons from it. I'll have some time now to think on my resolutions for 2015 but what I am sure is that it will be another great trading year and I can't wait the markets to open and all start running all over again.