Performance Through the First 10 Days

Ok, confession time.  These numbers are not great (on the surface) but once we dig into these numbers, there is a silver lining if you look for it.

Oh and, if you are reading this for the first time, and you are asking yourself “What is a combine”?  Then CLICK HERE for a brief explanation of what we are doing.

I will dig into the details in a minute….but first….

The Numbers

Summary of my first 10 Days in the TopstepTrader combine.

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Let’s start with the ugly

I am down a little bit over $1,200 in 10 trading days.  No sugar coating this…and as I always say…”it is what it is”.

On a side note, I have made 2 trading mistakes (in the form of a keyboard error and leaving my station with a pending order on the chart) during this combine. Mistakes that have cost me about $400 in this combine.  Now, this isn’t an excuse…it happens in trading and it is factored into these numbers.  I tell you this only to say these numbers could have been slightly better than they appear.  But at the end of the day…they count against qualifying or not qualifying.

Let’s dig a little bit deeper these numbers and see if we can find that silver lining I mentioned earlier.

  1. Despite only winning 24% of my trades during this 10 day window.  I have not been disqualified from the combine.  I would need to lose $2,000 to be disqualified.
  2. My average winning trade is $152 vs. the average losing trade of $67.  That is a risk reward ratio of 2.3 to 1.
  3. I am holding onto my winning trades for over an hour and the losing trades are 19 minutes long…an average of 3 to 1.

Here is the silver lining.  My “cut the losers short and let the winners run” trading philosophy is keeping me in the game.  Despite the fact that I am only winning 24% of the trades, I am averaging losing $126 per day.  This is the type of “win rate” that would be killing the average retail trader.

Now, the Bad

So, a fair question from you would be…”Why are you only winning 24% of your trades”?

Like I said, fair question.

The first answer is I have chosen to only trade the CL (Crude Oil) during this combine.  And, of course (Murphy’s law), this market has been in a very narrow trading range over the last 2 weeks.

Check out this chart.

CLick Chart to Expand

During the 10 trading days of my combine, the market has been range bound for 8 of those days.  A range that has been averaging about 66 ticks.  For the uninitiated, that is hard trading conditions for any set of trading tactics…mine included.

So, taking into account my combine rule of only trading the CL, I have really been at the mercy of these very choppy conditions and is the reason why my win rate is at 24%.

Finally, the Good

Alright, one of the “random” things about taking a combine, is that when you start the combine matters…a lot.  As I have detailed above, this market has been difficult to trade during these past 10 days.  And while you can tell me….”that’s trading” (and I agree) in real trading, it is truly a marathon and not a sprint.  In a combine, it is a little more “sprint” than “marathon”.

Let me show you what I mean when you take into account a snapshot of the last 90 days worth of trading performance.  You will see that in the “marathon” portion, we are doing well…during the sprint portion (the combine)…not as well.

August thru October 22nd Performance

This chart represents the overall performance during the last 90 days…it runs through October 22nd which was the day before I started this combine.

Winning Days vs. Losing Days August thru October

August through October 22nd Equity Curve

Give Me the Bottom LIne

Ok, here it is.

  1. It matters when you start a combine.  I started this combine in a choppy market.  As a result I have had choppy results.
  2. If you look at the equity curve (chart above) , you will see that the curve is not a straight line in one direction.  Like a trading chart there are pull backs.  But the overall curve is quite positive.
  3. I am only trading the CL which adds to the problem in bullet point 1.
  4. I have stuck with the cut the losers short and let the winners run philosophy that has served me well, give the fact that I have only won 24% of my trades.

I will continue to trade this combine as we move into the next trading week.  I am still only 1 good trade away from break even.  With luck, we will finally get that break we have been looking to receive.  Until then we will keep the risk low and wait for your opportunity to maximize the wins.

Click Here for the Extended Trial

The Oil Trading Group. (“OTG”) does not hold itself out as a Commodity Trading Advisor (“CTA”). Given this representation, all information and material provided by OTG is for educational purposes only and should not be considered specific investment advice.

CFTC RULE 4.41 – HYPOTHETICAL OR SIMULATED PERFORMANCE RESULTS HAVE CERTAIN LIMITATIONS. UNLIKE AN ACTUAL PERFORMANCE RECORD, SIMULATED RESULTS DO NOT REPRESENT ACTUAL TRADING. ALSO, SINCE THE TRADES HAVE NOT BEEN EXECUTED, THE RESULTS MAY HAVE UNDER-OR-OVER COMPENSATED FOR THE IMPACT, IF ANY, OF CERTAIN MARKET FACTORS, SUCH AS LACK OF LIQUIDITY. SIMULATED TRADING PROGRAMS IN GENERAL ARE ALSO SUBJECT TO THE FACT THAT THEY ARE DESIGNED WITH THE BENEFIT OF HINDSIGHT. NO REPRESENTATION IS BEING MADE THAT ANY ACCOUNT WILL OR IS LIKELY TO ACHIEVE PROFIT OR LOSSES SIMILAR TO THOSE SHOWN.

Trading performance displayed herein is hypothetical. Hypothetical performance results have many inherent limitations, some of which are described below. No representation is being made that any account will or is likely to achieve profits or losses similar to those shown. In fact, there are frequently sharp differences between hypothetical performance results and the actual results subsequently achieved by any particular trading program. One of the limitations of hypothetical performance trading results is that they are generally prepared with the benefit of hindsight. In addition, hypothetical trading does not involve financial risk, and no hypothetical trading record can completely account for the impact of financial risk in actual trading. For example, the ability to withstand losses or to adhere to a particular trading program in spite of trading losses are material points which can also adversely affect actual trading results. There are numerous other factors related to the markets in general or to the implementation of any specific trading program which cannot be fully accounted for in the preparation of hypothetical performance results and all of which can adversely affect actual trading results.