Thursday, May 21, 2015

Find the Action

This is for the futures traders out there.  Most equity traders will always find something moving and active to trade.  But if you are in a dull market like we are in S&P index futures trading, there are other places to trade.  Don't limit yourself to just one or two markets.  If you are an equity trader, you don't need to worry about this because there are always stocks on the move, and the ETFs give you access to currency, bond, and commodities markets.

It is hard to make money in a dull market.  Sure, it is hard to lose big in a dull market, but the bid/ask spread and commissions become a bigger percentage of your trading cost in a dull market, because moves don't go far.

The catalyst for an exciting S&P futures market is volatility, and volatility usually comes when there is weakness.  This is about the worst market for S&P futures trading, so I haven't touched it.  I look, but don't touch.  Focus has been on bonds recently because that is where the volatility is, and the opportunity has been lately.  Before that, did some crude oil trading because that is where the action was.  This is not recommended for everyone, because it does take time to adjust to how a market trades.  Crude oil trades very differently than S&P futures, which trades very differently than Treasury futures.

Some will say that you can just look at a chart and trade these different instruments, but the participants in each market have different motives and opinions.  For example, you will not see Treasury futures crash and then just go sideways, like you will see often in individual stocks.  The Treasury futures will crash, and have a decent bounce because there are many more value buyers in Treasuries than there are in a particular stock.

Same old same old in S&P, it is untradeable.  Will look to buy Treasuries if we can get another dip.

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