Thursday, 24 September 2009


I only had a couple of hours to watch the market today and no setups appeared that convinced me to trade. A lot of stocks had already moved to or close to the Fib Ext, so I left them alone.

I think that maybe I need to have a look at lower timeframes on days such as today. As the biggest moves happen in first 30 or 45mins. So maybe looking at 5 or 10min charts may help as the 15min candles are too late and/or have already encompassed the main move of the day.

However I have two main problems with regard to trading the lower timeframes:

1. The need to be quicker in your chart analysis and picking stocks to trade, but without sacrificing your accuracy. There are probably going to be more setups in the lower timeframes, but I would guess also that you have to be a better trader to spot the good ones as more will also be losers.

2. The possible need to have a predefined gap/scan list during pre-market. I currently scan after market open. But maybe I need to come up with a watchlist before market open and doing this work up front will allow more time to watch the charts as opposed to time spent weeding out the bad charts during first 30mins as I currently do.

Any comments welcome as always.


niki said...

i think the larger the time frame its stronger ,so stay with the 15 minute bar.

i search also stock that break yesterday range with a big (OR) bar.

did you consider exit with all your share when you reach 2R ?

OONR7 said...

it's not a difficult as you may think. I would suggest taking the WL you currently have and look for setups there on the 5 and 10-min timeframes.

TraderAm said...

Thanks for comments.

Exiting at 2R : maybe would work better now, but it won't when stocks start following thru as they were doing last year.

opw said...

I find there is really no need to change timeframes. In fact, the 15/30 min charts are great in catching the big moves.

If you look at the gappers yesterday, many of the short opps had an inside bar on the 15 min or even 30 min before continuing.

Using gappers is a great way to find the big movers, but scanning for % gainers and losers after half an hour is often even better, or new 2 or 20 day lows. Big gaps (>2 times average daily range) often are done right away and don't move much anymore. MHP was a great example of a mover not gapping, but showing up on the new 20 day low scan.

That being said, I look at 1,5,15,30,60 and Daily timeframe before entering.

I scan for 15/30 min pullbacks but actually use the 1 min chart for entry and setting the initial stop. Often a nice 1 min CnH or a base offers a great way of entering with a tight stop. A tight stop often helps in getting that first target in and improving risk reward. While it is true that a tight stop sometimes fakes you out, all in all if you enter a short near resistance and a long near support, the overal result greatly improves.
MHP (20 day low) for example offered several great 1 min bases after the 15 min pullback.

Anyway, I thought I'd share a few of my thoughts after lurking this great blog for a year or two. I hope you (and ooNR7) keep it up!

TraderAm said...


Don't lurk too much my friend.

Since I started blogging, I have had various comments good and bad which is to be expected. But occasionally I get a post which makes it all worthwhile.

Thanks for a great comment and I hope other readers get something from it as well.

By co-incidence, it's something I have been mulling over. Still using 15min charts but entry on lower timeframe.


TL said...

Hi Traderam,

I've been trading 3-min chart for the past few months and had great success with it. Here are my few thoughts on timeframe,

1. They are all the same. I've looked at 15-min, 10-min, 5-min, and 3-min in the past. Price action just doesn't care what timeframe you look from it. I trade the exact same way as I did with 15-min chart. And I suspect the 1-min and 0.537-min chart would be just the same too.

2. To trade a shorter timeframe, the first thing you do is cut down your WL size. If you are shifting from 15-min to 5-min, start with 1/5 of the size and slowly add more when you get more experienced.

3. Specify you setups. Clarify the unclear. You need to be knowing which stock is going to give you an entry ahead of time.

4. Simplify your process. How can you make your layout more efficient? How can you enter orders faster? Any hotkeys?

5. As with anything in life, you get better with time. The only consideration is you are trading at your workplace.

6. Regarding shorter timeframe giving you more opportunities, it's not true. Yes you have more setups, but from a shorter WL too. I found it just the same too. So my suggestion is change to a shorter timeframe only if it fits your personality better.

7. Regarding preparing WL, I trade a fixed WL so can't suggest much. But in my experience, the first 10 to 15 minute is extremely wild. Spreads are wide and prices move very fast. I don't trade until 10 minutes into the day. If so do you then you should have the time to get your WL up.

Hope it make sense to you. It's sad that you and 00NR7 are thinking about cutting posts. I for sure understand how lonely trading is, let alone blogging about trading! I visit your blogs every day. I don't post much because we trade different setups and it's hard for me to comment on something I'm not familiar with. That said, I appreciate your effort very much.

All the best with trading!

andi said...

whatever happened to the dictum: do not trade the first 30-45 mins

TraderAm said...

Thanks TL..some good points in there.

TraderAm said...

Andi: was that my dictum ? I probably said I don't trade in first 30mins because that will give me at least two 15min candles to look at ?

However, perhaps I should make a distinction here.

You can move to lower tf (say 5mins) and therefore have more candles to look at and make a judgement after 15mins as to trades setting up.

Or you can move to lower tf (say 5 mins) and still only trade after 45mins. This may give you better r/r entries than the 15min candles would do.

To be honest when I posted my post, it was just that I have noticed more frequently that a lot of times the bigger moves have already happened after 3 candles and reached the Fib Ext. I was theorising that maybe a use of lower timeframes could have allowed me to capture that move.

As said in the above very good comments, this is not necessarily the case. It's a thing I will look into and research more for sure. I'll keep you guys updated on my progress.

bl said...

All great comments. Recently I've been looking at (for the most part)'s free upgrade/downgrade, ipo, eps, guidance list and with a WL of 100 or less all premkt. Take the top % ones at the open say 5 or 6 with some volume, put them on 1,3,5min charts. You'd be surprised...this week: DAN AIR AM RHT AONE and today BC: 10/1" 3/3" 2/5". I'm looking for quick moves. Another screen: >7% $3-9 stocks first 10 min or so: DRAM.