Sunday, October 26, 2008

Tipster Trendlines - things to come

The "free" version is no longer available. Go to the Tipster Trendlines 2.1 post for additional information.

Here is a short video showing you what I'm working on next for the Tipster Trendlines code. The code is not yet 100%, when it is, I'll post it. If you have any comments on what is being planned for the next version, leave a comment.

The new version will feature drop down menu's and trigger buttons right on the chart.


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

What do you think is going on?

This post is not meant as investment advice, it's purpose is to spark some comments and discussion.

What's your opinion on what the market is doing? Why all the volatility? Why the melt down? Why is the US dollar going nuts? What's up with the huge drop in oil? Why are great high dividend yield blue chip stocks taking a hit? Here are my thoughts;

Liquidity seems to be the issue. Investors were, and still are worried that the firm they have their money invested in will go bankrupt, or worse, the firm they have there money in has invested in some other firm that goes bankrupt. Either way your funds would be locked up in a bankruptcy and that's not liquid. This has caused people (or those on wall street) to cash out, stocks, commodities, everything. You never saw this coming did you? Wall street did, that's why there was a huge drop to begin this mess. Read the user groups on the early questions on the put volume of some of those firms that bit the dust. People were trying to figure out if they were buying or selling puts. Looks like they were buying puts and made a huge, huge killing on the firms that went tits up.

Why is gold not going up since it is the safe haven? Cash. Everyone wants cash. The biggest cash nation, rather richest nation is the USA. That's where the credit crunch started. Funds are liquidating investments world wide causing all indexes to fall from the massive selling. Once they sell a stock in a foreign country they must then convert the currency back to USD. The USD is going full tilt in an uptrend. I think you can almost compare currencies to see where the biggest exchange of funds is happening to some extent. In Canada, the oil and commodity prices are also killing us, that impacts the Canadian dollar. Why are the commodities dropping such as metals and gold? Liquidation.

This is going to be a long healing process, not a quick snap back to the market. The volatility is probably due to huge amounts of money being moved around, not the norm for the market. To end this, the mass amounts of cash has to be moved to the US and invested elsewhere.

So what is next?
When the time comes, when all the cash is back at home in the USA, who knows what will move. The first sign will be the indexes stabilize, then slow decline in the USD, then accelerated decline of the USD against the Canadian dollar, oil will rise, and whatever the US giants invest in will rise. If a recession is coming, look for a rise in recession proof stocks. The USD will cease to rise since there will be no more buyers.

What am I going to do? I'm going to try to ride the USD higher. When it snaps the uptrend, short away. But be careful and manage risk. The market will start to settle down and into a trend when the normalcy again, weather its a bear or bull market.

That's my theory. What's yours?

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Globe and Mail and the way forward

This is a look at the past, the present, and the future.

A while back I was contacted by the Globe and Mail and asked to participate in the "Me and My Money" column. The column is below, click to enlarge. The paper version has a fairly large picture of me playing my guitar, very cool.

Larry MacDonald also mentioned me in his own blog, where he discussed day trading on the TSX. Anyone else out there day trade the TSX? Technically, I'm not day trading since I don't watch the screen during the day. I put my order in at night, it could trigger the buy and sell in the same day, thus called a "day trade". Below the article I describe what has changed since then.

Page 1

Page 2

Something has changed since the article was written. I have moved all of the RRSP accounts that hold mutual funds to a discount brokerage. IB does not offer RRSP, LIRA, or RESP accounts so I went elsewhere.

Why did I do this?:

First of all, I had my funds in RRSP's for the same reason most other people do, not enough time to manage it and for the long term I felt the pro's would do a better job. For the most part this might be true. The single issue I have with this is their ability to exit when they smell something rotten, such as a declining 50 day MA, even worse with a declining 200 day MA. Even if they knew a few US firms were about to implode, how could they liquidate a fund of that size? Who cares. I know I could liquidate my holdings in a blink of an eye and not cause any market movement.

The long term plan:
First of all, cash is a position. Decide for yourself when to get in and get out, before your emotions take control. Here is my plan. After reading a book about a guy who purchased solid dividend paying companies, and retiring, I decided to go on my own. I will only purchased companies with that meet certain criteria, the top two are "must pay dividends" and "from the chart". There is more to the dividend research than that, just like there is more to the "chart" than that. Basically, dividend paying companies in an uptrend, or at support.

How has it worked so far? Pretty good. In the past few weeks some of the fund transfer was complete so I went on a search to find some stocks on the TSX. (I wasn't about to buy on the US exchange as the CDN dollar has been beaten up lately). One of the stocks that I set up an order for was BMO. All four stocks had limit orders set up, set up at prior support. I figured it could take up to 4 weeks to get a fill if the market was going to be ranging. To my surprise, the very next day the market got killed. All four orders were filled. Scary you might say. It turned out pretty good. Patience to wait for the price was a key, after all, it's long term. Here's a chart, my fill price is the white horizontal line.

BMO.TO - Weekly

BMO.TO - Daily

Notice that there is a triple bottom, and each bottom on the weekly chart has less volume, that's good. As far as risk management for this trade there are two options.

First, if the price breaks that support - get out quick, usually a fourth test of a horizontal line is like a hot knife through butter.
Second, set the stop at my break even while considering any dividends received, perhaps setting the stop a little lower for breathing room. I'm looking at the close prices before I place a stop order.
Third - never sell. Strange thing to say but at the white line it is 7.5% yield. Better than a sharp stick in the eye.

So lets sit back and see which way the market heads. The path of least resistance is down. To be back in an uptrend we need higher lows and higher highs. Or we could range for a long, long time. If you want to see what a bottom looks like (it's hardly ever a V on a daily chart), check out today's video at Also take a look at this Bear Market Post to gain perspective. Yo be your own judge. If your confused, put your money under your mattress and wait for the bullets to stop flying. Cash is a position. If you know what your doing, follow your trade plan.

One more thing - I almost have a working version of an updated tipster trendlines with more bells and whistles. This one has trigger buttons and drop down menus right on the chart. Should be ready in a week or so. Is anybody using version 1.0 or 1.1 of the code to trade with?

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Chart Trading Question

A reader emailed a question about the tipster trendline chart trading code that I thought would be beneficial to others if I posted it. I'm not offering any advice or opinion on the set-ups profit potential, only how the code works and IB's order triggers.

"I attached a graphic, in which you can see, on 1st of Oct. I wanted to short IMS, on breakout of the bottom of the previous candle, but as you can see the candle of 1st of Oct, is a strong up candle. My stop order of sell should not trigger, and my buy stop (which is my stop loss) is set to 12.39$, so what happen in IB."

Line BS is the buy stop order. The price must go below this level for the order to trigger. This is the "Parent" order.

Line ST is the stop loss order. This is a child order, child of Parent order "BS". This order is will not trigger until the Parent order triggers (BS).

Line TA is the target order. This is a child order, child of Parent order "BS". This order will not trigger until the Parent order triggers (BS).

So in this example, if the BS order was a "DAY" order and not a "GTC" (Good 'Till Cancelled) order, at the close of Oct 2 the order BS has not triggered, therefore ST and TA will not trigger. At the close of the day the orders will automatically disappear from TWS and you would not have a position.

How does this work in TWS? To see how this works, left click on the coloumn titles of your order page inside TWS. You need to add a field called "OCA" (One Cancels All). The Parent order (BS) will be blank. The two child orders (TA and ST) will have the same numbers in the field.

When you set up a bracket order manually within TWS, this is basically what TWS is doing for you. You can also do it manually. Try it manually to learn something. You can also use this technique to capture a breakout of a range, such as a squeeze in price, if you want to catch a move to the upside or downside. I haven't played with this type of order very much but I'm sure it can be done so that when you get a break in one direction, the orders for the other direction are cancelled.


The information presented on this site is for educational and entertainment purposes only. This site contains no suggestions or instructions that you must follow, do your own research and due diligence before committing your cash to the markets. Your on your own.