So after spending what felt like an eternity away from trading (2013 was the last time I placed a trade I believe); I am finally back in the game!
Ironically this time, I will be starting with the smallest account I've ever traded with, a tiny $1,000 account. My broker of choice this time around is Sure Trader.
Although my style of choice will be swing trading; my main reason for choosing SureTrader was avoiding the PDT rule. As I know from experience that I am capable of making consistent positive monthly returns swing trading but the PDT rule has always halted my progress.
In addition, SureTrader will allow me 2:1 overnight margin although my starting balance will be sub-$2,000. Their commissions are also quite good for persons (like myself) trading generally smaller positions sizes (1,000 shares or less will cost me a maximum of $6.50 per buy or sell).
As far as post-market scans for swing set-ups are concerned; I've opted to pay $29.99/month for TC 2000 gold. I've already spent the last month or so getting familiar with and it allows me to do my market, sector, breakouts/breakdowns, set-up scans every day in less 30 minutes. Although I can accomplish the same thing with FINVIZ for free; the process is usually for too time consuming and tedious.
For order entries, charting and alerts during the trading session; I will use SureTrader Pro for the rest of May at a cost of $50.
From June however, I plan to use ThinkorSwim by TD Ameritrade for charting and alerts at no cost . I've sent off an application for an account with them so that I can use ThinkorSwim with real time data for free. I will then switch to the SureTrader Web platform which is free of cost for order entries/management.
So my total expenses for my first month will be $80 but only about $30 per month there after.
I plan to use TraderVue for journaling and analyzing my trades. I will journal my trades at the end of each trading day but analyze them monthly. If I am not meeting or exceeding my goals; this will show me why and also show me any adjustments I need to make.
During my time away from trading; I'v done a lot of reflecting and studying. As a consequence my attitude and mind set have shifted. I no longer see the markets and trading as an avenue to "get-rich quick" but as haven where one can grind out wealth in the long term (years) given a solid trading plan, consistency and discipline are maintained day-in, day-out.
As such my goals which are multi-tiered now reflect my new line of thinking. My long term goal is to grow this account to around $30,000 by the end of 2019 (as opposed to a million! :p ) so that I can then fund an account with ThinkorSwim with no PDT restrictions.
I have however, broken this longer term goal into shorter term goals:
1) Grow my account from $1,000 to $5,000 by the end of August 2017 or achieve roughly 50% compounded monthly returns. During this period, I will size aggressively; risking 5% of my equity per trade with a maximum of 1-2 positions at a time. I will be at or near fully margined on most days.
2) Grow my account from $5,000 to $10,000 by the end of December 2017 or achieve roughly 20% compounded monthly returns. I will size more moderately; risking only 2% of my equity per trade with a maximum of 4-5 positions at a time. Although I will likely still be at or near fully margined fairly frequently during this period; my portfolio heat will be more spread out as my risk will be spread across more positions.
3) Grow my account from $10,000 to $30,000 by the end of December 2018 or achieve roughly 10% compounded monthly returns. I will risk only 1% of my equity per trade with a maximum of 8-10 positions at a time. This way my account will only get fully margined more sporadically and likely only when the markets or certain sectors/industries are trending strongly one way or other and lots of set-ups are emerging daily.
As far as blog updates:
1) I will post my focus list aka the stocks I will be looking to take positions in the next day every night as well as my market bias and any other thoughts on the markets;
2) I will at minimum, weekly post reviews of select trades that I'd taken during the past week:
3) Finally, I will do at least one update at the end of each month looking at my progress versus my goals; my trade metrics; incites and adjustments I will make for the upcoming month.
Monday should be my first official day live. I will post my Monday watches tomorrow night. So excited to get started...lets get this!!!