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Finance Blog: Is There Any Science in Financial Trading?
Financial spread betting has potential for high gains, but why are people generally so unsuccessful at it?

Trading Diary January 2016

4/1/16:The market dropped significantly overnight, following the Chinese market, which had lost 7%. Once the main market had opened officially, there was the usual froth in which the FTSE seemed to be heading up again. However, after a few minutes, the downward slide resumed so I went short at 6157. I was too anxious to make a decent profit, however, and I closed at 6142.5 for a nice profit of £29, but there was a lot more there. After a small recovery, the market resumed its reduction again and I went short at 6125.5, closing a few minutes later for a £19 profit. Those two trades summed to £48 and put my account back in the black.

I made a few trades during the afternoon, picking up a few more pounds, but the FTSE seemed only to be slowly drifting. Just after 4 pm, I made the mistake of going long at 6097.5 but soon after the market tanked. At one point the position was over £50 down the tubes, but I held on grimly. Fortunately, the situation turned around and at about 6 pm I closed for a modest profit of around £14. That made a total of over £69 for the day, a good start to the week and January.

5/1/16:The FTSE recovered a little overnight and once the market opened in the morning, it appeared to be heading up, so I went long at 6158. I missed the peak of the market, however, and expecting the FTSE to go back up again, I closed too late for a small profit of just £7. Thereafter the market started to go down and I went short at 6128. Unfortunately, I timed it badly, and not knowing whether the market would go back up again, I closed for a loss of £23. It became clear that the market was sincere in its desire to drop, so I went short again. Unfortunately, I lacked commitment and managed to gain only a few pounds. By about 12 pm, the FTSE appeared to have bottomed out and seemed to be heading up again. I went long at 6103, but for most of the next hour the position was under water. The FTSE has now indeed gone up and I closed rather too early for a profit of £25. Profit for the day so far is £15.

I made two further trades in the afternoon, both long. I first went long in early afternoon, but the market seemed to stall so I was happy to close for a tiny profit of £4. Just around 4 pm, the market looked to be heading upwards, so I went long at 6143. Unfortunately, that proved to be a big mistake, but I decided to hold on anyway. I was wondering whether my decision was sound, as my position was £60 under at one point. Mindful of my usual problem in not hanging on long enough I continued into the evening. Finally, just after 7 pm in the off market, the FTSE increased and I was happy to close for a £11 profit, £30 on the day. That profit, though, doesn't reflect the risk that I took to get it!

6/1/16:After the morning rush hour, the market started to head upwards so I went long at 6118. The result of that trade had deep repercussions for my trading for for the whole of the month. In particular, I took the view that I should only close the position when I had a decent profit. Things didn't quite work out that way! Initially, the position went positive, but within a few minutes the market turned. Thinking that this was a temporary situation, I just let my losses mount up.

Previous Months' Accounts

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Website revised by John Austin, 1/2/2016. © Enigma Scientific Publishing, 2016.