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Why are the Best Trading Opportunities Scary?

Posted by Mark Meadows, TopstepTrader on February 14, 2019

Twice this week, I’ve been noticeably “scared” to enter a trade.

The first time was Monday, when I noticed an opportunity while watching the Market Forecast with TopstepTrader’s Senior Performance Coach John Hoagland. As he does every day at 8:15 AM CT live on TopstepTrader's Facebook page, John brought up the Crude Oil chart. It showed Crude was selling off hard to $51.26, slightly below a double swing low at $51.33 from January 17 and January 28. It was a clear opportunity.

But I missed it.

As the chart above shows, the price even came back to test that level two hours later. You’d think that this would be a great opportunity, but instead it just confirmed my thoughts that the market was “heavy.” The market looked heavy. It looked like the support was going to give.

It didn’t, and with the benefit of hindsight, we see that prices rallied that day $1.50 and have been rallying ever since. Opportunity missed again.

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Topics: Performance Coaching, Trading Basics, Trading Lessons, Forex, Futures, Emotions

3 Things I Did to Pass Step 1 and Step 2 of the Trading Combine® in 15 days

Posted by Jason Love, Oil Trading Group on November 06, 2018

Hello, my name is Jason Love, and I am the Founder and Lead Trader for the Oil Trading Group.

As a way of quick background, I have been affiliated with TopstepTrader in one capacity or another since 2012. I have been a funded trader, educator and webinar presenter. I strongly recommend TopstepTrader to all the traders with whom I come in to contact. Even if the trader has no intention of becoming a funded trader, I advise them to take (and pass) a Trading Combine® prior to risking their own funds.

The reason for this is quite simple: if you can pass a Trading Combine using TopstepTrader’s parameters, then you will be in a better position to handle your live trading account and, ultimately, in a better position to make money trading futures.

That’s why, from time-to-time, I will also enter a Trading Combine and trade it live in front of my trading room audience. The purpose is to demonstrate live what we talk about all the time: the fact that the number one job of a trader is to preserve capital. Making money is secondary to preserving capital.

Here are three things I did to pass my latest Trading Combine in 15 days.

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Topics: Performance Coaching, Trading Basics, Futures

Trade Better: How to Adjust to Volatility and Avoid Frustration

Posted by TopstepTrader on November 04, 2018

Trading can be frustrating. Perhaps never more so than when you think you are seeing the market clearly and yet, you can't seem to take advantage. 

That was the topic of a post on Topstep's private Facebook community, where Lee A. said:

"I'm again having the comical problem of being 100% correct in directional moves, yet getting stopped out or filling entries that go nowhere. And just found myself upside down once again today and had to cut a trade at a big loss. Can anyone share some wisdom?"

The post hit a nerve within the community, particularly given the recent volatility that has some traders wondering how to adjust their styles in a new environment. So, Performance Coach Dan Hodgman and our Content Manager Mark Meadows got on Facebook Live to talk through their recommendations for adjustments traders should make to continue to make money trading futures. Enjoy. 

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Topics: Performance Coaching, Trading Basics, Forex, Futures

Patience Pays: How a Funded Trader Cashed in on a $2,700 Trade

Posted by TopstepFX on September 26, 2018

Imagine being in one trade over four days, watching your P&L go up $1,000 to even, back to up $1,000 to even as the market gyrates 40-50 pips over hours. Your long bias is still valid, so you sit in the trade, waiting for things to play out.

To compound matters, add that the last time the market did this, it was a false breakout that caused you to lose some money.

That's the scenario that Gabriele T. from Italy found himself in last week when he was long EUR/USD after it broke out above 1.1650. Yet Gabriele was able to be patient and let the trade work out, a decision that ultimately helped him profit $2,700. 

In this week's The Trade, we break down the market setup and what Gabriele did so right. 

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Topics: Performance Coaching, Trading Basics, Forex, EUR/USD, Trading Setups, The Trade, TopstepFX Funded Traders

This is How You Profit on a Break Below Major Support

Posted by TopstepTrader on August 27, 2018

Breakouts above major resistance or breakdowns below major support are a trader's dream. They occur rarely, but offer opportunities for trades over multiple days. Such was the case when Euro futures ($6E) broke down in mid-August. 

For multiple months, the Euro put in a strong level of support around 1.16, bouncing between there and lower highs beginning in May. As the chart shows, this put in a technical formation of a descending triangle, which is a bearish technical pattern. That bearish pattern played out here in the Euro when prices ultimately broke below support.

Coach Dan breaks down this trade and exactly how traders can identify these moves and profit. 

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Topics: Performance Coaching, Trading Basics, Futures, Euro, Trading Setups, The Trade

Funded Trader: $2,300 in Profits Riding Nasdaq to New Highs

Posted by TopstepTrader on July 24, 2018

We say it often — trading is all about your risk-to-reward ratio. In this trade, Brad M. from Chicago nailed going long Nasdaq ($NQ) futures and riding one contract for more than 100 points and $2,296.04 in profits. That's something worth celebrating, right Brad? 

Coach Dan breaks down Brad's trade, placed on July 17, in this week's episode of The Trade.  Coach Dan goes over what Brad saw, how he executed his trading bias and what price level he targeted and where he might have gotten out of the trade if it went sideways. 

By looking at what Brad saw at the time, Dan outlines what happened in the market and what you can learn and take into your trading. 

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Topics: Performance Coaching, Trading Basics, Futures, Trading Setups, The Trade, Nasdaq

8 Days, $10K in Profits for a Funded Futures Trader

Posted by TopstepTrader on July 09, 2018

If you've been following TopstepTrader on social media, you've probably seen the name Mykhailio C., one of our funded futures traders from Ukraine. That's because in his first month trading in a Funded Account®, Mykhailio absolutely crushed it.

Trading Crude Oil ($CL) exclusively, Mykhailio averages nearly $550 in profits each day he trades — winning and losing days included. If he maintained that pace, it equates to more than $125,000 in annual trading gains. 

NOTE: If you'd like to learn more about trading Crude Oil in your own account, be sure to check out out our Beginner's Guide to Trading Crude Oil Futures for some helpful tips on getting started. 

He is profitable on 71% of his winning days. Some of those winning days, as Coach Dan describes in this episode of The Trade, include days where just 20% of his trades were profitable. But that's what's possible with a favorable risk management setup. And that's how you can build an 8-day winning streak into $10,000 in realized profits. 

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Topics: Performance Coaching, Trading Basics, Futures, Trading Setups, The Trade, Crude Oil

$1,500+ Trade: When Overnight Trading Presents Opportunities

Posted by TopstepTrader on June 28, 2018

The best part about trading being 23 hours a day is that it can present opportunities at any point in the day. For many traders that trade futures part-time, that means that the market is there when you have the time to dedicate. 

But you still have to think through your trade. And in this episode of The Trade,  Coach Dan Hodgman breaks down a trade by funded trader Evan L. in Colorado. On June 18, as rumors of tariff and trade disputes stirred, Evan took a short position in the Nasdaq. In that trade, Evan made more than $1,500 in real profits. 

As Coach Dan outlines, everything that Evan did, he nailed spot on — from his use of market dynamics to a target that matched perfectly with major trend lines. In one of his more in-depth analysis, Coach Dan also breaks down other levels in play, as well as additional places that traders would have be "right" to take profits. 

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Topics: Performance Coaching, Trading Basics, Futures, Trading Setups, The Trade, Nasdaq

The Best Way to Bounce Back From a Major Trading Loss

Posted by TopstepTrader on June 20, 2018

Major trading losses are part of the game. Just ask any futures or forex trader. Every one of Jack Schwager’s Market Wizards has a story of a spectacular loss. And chances are that if you’ve been trading for any time you do too.

But what separates the successful trader from the unsuccessful trader is what happens after the loss. The successful traders say, “never again.”

The unsuccessful traders allow their decisions to be determined by revenge trading. They start seeing red – both in their temper and their P&L.

Instead, here is how you can bounce back and learn from your trading.

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Topics: Performance Coaching, Trading Basics, Forex, Futures

Hold on to Your Hats: Summer Trading is Going to be Full of Opportunities

Posted by TopstepTrader on June 07, 2018

Summer trading is usually a grind. Not this year. At least that's not what we're expecting. Between the interest in markets spurred by the surge in volatility that started in February, important trading levels (like new highs in equity futures, and grains markets hitting their peak, the Summer of '18 may present some great opportunities to profit trading. Here's how.

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Topics: Performance Coaching, Trading Combine, Coach's Playbook, Forex, Futures

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