PHO TOGRAPH: FREDRIK BRODÉN, ILLUSTRATION: RANDALL WATSON
• FORGET THE PRESIDEN T’S first trimester.
How’d you do on your first 100 days—of
trading, that is?
If you haven’t done so already, it’s time
to give yourself a midyear review. The nice
thing about being a trader is that you’re your
own boss and you don’t have to worry about
getting fired or your feelings hurt. But you
still need to be fair to yourself—and honest.
Analyze your winners and losers. Why did
your winners win? Was it luck or was it your
stellar trading skills? And did your losers lose
because they were good trades gone bad or
was it your own lack of discipline?
Self-reflection isn’t always easy. But when
you peel back the trading onion, you may discover you might be hanging on a bit too tight
to your trades. Or maybe not long enough. In
love or trading, knowing how long you should
stick around isn’t always obvious. Consider
some matchmaking tips in “A Short-Term
Fling or Puttin’ On the Ring?” on page 20 to
align direction and time with your trading
Remember, it’s more than the individual
trades you have to look at. Each of those
trades are a part of something bigger—your
portfolio. When you look at it from the perspective of your portfolio, it may just open
doors to creative ways to manage your positions. In “Are You Missing the Forest for the
Trades?” on page 24, you’ll learn that knowing your portfolio’s beta-weighted greeks can
take risk analysis to a new level. And the view
from that higher level is eye-opening.
And it gets even more eye-opening when
you go beyond your portfolio and look at
fundamental data such as GDP, jobs, housing,
and consumer spending. Getting comfy with
Fed data may not have been on your radar, but
the reality is the “dismal science” of economic data can have an impact on how certain
sectors or stocks move. In our cover feature
“Three Clicks from Data to Trade” on page 16,
The First 100 Days…
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you’ll raise your awareness a notch and see
things from a different view.
All told, by the time you read this, your first
100 days will be a distant memory. But by taking the time to reflect on your midyear P/L,
taking a bigger-picture approach to trading
portfolio analysis, and adding economic data
to your bag of tricks, you could be in a better
position for the rest of the year.