Thursday, January 8, 2009

Trading A Longer Timeframe

FOREX Rethink
Though I've been trading the AUDJPY on a 15m chart quite a bit, and with reasonable success, I am thinking about moving to a larger time frame. Well, to be accurate, it's not so much that I plan to use a different chart. What I really want to do is accumulate positions over a longer period of time.

Do you know why?

Because, if I can accumulate a bunch of positions that are at some level of profit, I can make incredible gains during a longer term market move. For example, if you have an appropriate part of your account at risk, plus you have multiple in-profit positions protected by a stop loss, all of them will bring returns during an extended upswing.

Accumulation Strategy
To accumulate in-profit positions I have my charting software chart my average position price. When prices are above this level I'll sell a profitable position that was purchased above the current average price. Then, when the market moves south, I'll buy a new position further down.

It's important to use small enough positions when using this strategy as you may end up accumulating some trades while waiting for a suitable price swing. Using small position sizes gives you the flexibility to open and close positions, some of which may be unprotected, while you wait for a major move in your favor.

I find this type of trading improves my patience. You will end up thinking it may be worthwhile making another trade and then say, I'll wait for it to hit point X instead. Either the price will hit X or it must move in my favor! With this viewpoint it is very easy to wait and see what happens. Doing this, and catching a new low price point, for example, adjusts your average price and makes it easier to find a suitable position to unload on an upswing.

Accumulation Results
Based on my own experience I can suggest that your interim results will be reduced. You won't be entering and exiting trades as often nor will you be as concerned about capturing apparent tops and bottoms. However, once you find yourself on the right side of a longer term swing you can pull in significant profits all at once.

However, keep in mind, you are at risk of a major movement against your trades. You must be willing to trust a significant top or bottom -- to the point that if it fails you could end up suffering a margin call. This isn't for the faint of heart. Of course, you could always create a small sub-account specifically for implementing this type of strategy when you think you do have a known top or bottom.

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