Sept 9 US morning session NQ, play-by-play CST

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Sept 9 US morning session NQ, play-by-play CST

LHS incentive move downward but no follow through & the chikou does not clear the Kumo. Followed by incentive move through EMAs and Kumo with clear chikou that does hold, resulting in entries.

The first two entries are good for 30 to 35 ticks. That’s a pretty big move and the chikou is running into price as current price is running into equilibrium (the EMAs). The highlighted candle is an okay entry given that there is already money made. Notice that even though the chikou is technically below price, that particular price level does not really mean anything. If the upward move had reversed off a parabolic candle it would have significance, but here it does not mean much so I’m not concerned with the chikou, other than we may be consolidating but there is probably still some move left given the EMAs & Kumo. In general I often don’t use the chikou but that’s because I have traded this indicator enough that I am aware of it’s location & meaning without printing it. It’s a very important part of the ichiMoku system. In particular it is a big part of why you don’t need to look at multiple time frames in order to trade it. Just as an example, if you play around with it you will be able to predict what a double compression Kumo looks like based on the current Kumo & the chikou. However that is not necessary, even though I only display roughly 30 candles on my chart the ichikou is giving me a meaningful, trade-able summary of the last 108 candles. That allows me to focus on now, in context.

Again the chikou is at price & price is into equilibrium. This time though looks weaker than the last. The EMAs briefly turned red & there is what looks like a lower high in place. The Doji in the EMAs is okay, but I would prefer to get through a consolidation at this point.

Consolidation follows, then an incentive move through the averages & just through the Kumo. The red hammer at the pullback to EMAs & Kumo is a decent spot. It’s red but its location & shape are compelling enough.

Nice incentive move & pullback, clear entry.

The highlighted candle on the left is the most recent entry; the one on the right is a reversal entry. I like the reversal because of the entire picture. 1- the oval illustrates that price got pretty extended from equilibrium. 2 – Price never picked up downward incentive once it reached the stall level. 3 – An upward incentive move, through the stall level, that holds with the advance into the EMAs.

There isn’t much room to the Kumo, but it’s a thin Kumo and there is enough room for a trade. In a spot like this I trail the stop tight once price gets close to the spanB. There will almost always be another entry if it turns out to be a good run and in the case where it breaks and runs on the first try I’ll probably not be stopped out.

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There is an incentive move & it does hold on the pullback but the picture does not look good enough. There really is no trend, from my perspective price in this zone is random. The second pullback is a little better but still it’s just not much of a trending environment.

Looks like I took a break too early, there was another nice set-up & move at 10:30. I was thinking that there had been quite a bit of movement & probably wouldn’t be much more at least until the afternoon. That’s just another reminder to trade what the market is doing not what I think it should – successful short term trading is about reacting, not predicting.

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The Best Times of the Day to Buy and Sell Stocks

The Balance 2020 / Miguel Co

Sometimes less is more when it comes to day-trading. Devoting two to three hours a day is often better for most traders of stocks, stock index futures, and index-based exchange-traded funds (ETFs) than buying and selling stocks the entire day, for a couple of reasons.

Specific hours provide the greatest opportunity for day-trading, so trading only during these hours can help you maximize your efficiency. Trading all day takes up more time than necessary for very little additional reward. In many cases, even professional day traders tend to lose money outside of these ideal trading hours.

Avoiding Mental Fatigue

Additionally, day-trading requires discipline and focus, both of which are like muscles. Overwork them and the muscles give out. Trading only two to three hours a day keeps you on your game, and it likely won’t lead to the mental fatigue that can negatively affect your work. Trying to trade six or seven hours a day can drain you and make you more susceptible to mistakes.

Of course, everyone has different focus and discipline levels. Some traders might be able to buy and sell all day and do it well, but most do better by trading only during the few hours that are best for day-trading.

Trading at the Opening

Trading during the first one to two hours that the stock market is open on any day is all many traders need. The first hour tends to be the most volatile, providing the most opportunity. Although it sounds harsh, professional traders know that a lot of “dumb money” is flowing at this time.

Dumb money is the phenomenon of people making transactions based on what they read in the newspapers or saw on TV the night before. The information these people are acting upon is typically old news. Their trades can create sharp price movements in one direction. Then professional traders take advantage of the overly high or low price and push it back the other way.

New day traders are often told not to trade during the first 15 minutes of the day, and that might be good advice for very new traders, but the first 15 minutes typically offers the best opportunities for seasoned traders. This time period can provide the biggest trades of the day on the initial trends.

Ending by 11:30

Regular trading begins at 9:30 a.m. ET, so the hour ending at 10:30 a.m. ET is often the best trading time of the day. It offers the biggest moves in the shortest amount of time. If you want another hour of trading, you can extend your session to 11:30 a.m. ET.

A lot of professional day traders stop trading around 11:30 because that’s when volatility and volume tend to taper off. Trades take longer, and moves are smaller on lower volume—not a good combination for day-trading.

If you’re day-trading index futures such as the E-mini S&P 500 (ES) or an index-based ETF such as the SPDR S&P 500 (SPY), you can begin trading as early as 8:30 a.m. during premarket hours and begin tapering off at around 10:30 a.m. That provides a solid two hours of trading, usually with a lot of profit potential.

As with stocks, trading can continue up to 11:30 a.m. ET, but only if the market is still providing opportunities to capitalize on the trading strategies you’re using.

The Last Hour

Many day-traders also trade the last hour of the day, from 3 to 4 p.m. ET. By that time, traders have had a long break since the morning session, allowing them to regroup and regain their focus.

The last hour can be a lot like the first when you’re looking at common intraday stock market patterns. It’s full of bigger moves and sharp reversals. Like the first hour, many amateur traders jump in during the last hour, buying or selling based on what has happened so far that day. Dumb money is once again floating around, although not as much as it was in the morning. It’s ready to be scooped up by more experienced money managers and day traders.

The last several minutes of trading can be particularly active, with big moves on high volume.

The Best Days and Months

Keep the bigger picture in mind, too, beyond the hourly grind. Monday afternoon is usually a good time to buy because the market historically tends to drop at the beginning of the week, particularly around the middle of the month. Many experts recommend selling on Friday before that Monday dip occurs, particularly if that Friday is the first day of a new month or when it precedes a three-day weekend.

Likewise, prices tend to drop in September and then hike again a month later. October is generally positive overall, and prices often go up again in January, particularly for value and small-cap stocks.

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