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Bert J. Wilkison, of Chicago, IL, is the CEO and a Managing Member at Kinetic Investments, a subsidiary of Wilkison Financial, LLC. He is also an active pooled funds manager who enjoys stock picking, trading, ETF strategizing and finding long-term value plays ahead of the ever-evolving markets.... More
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Wilkison Financial, LLC
  • $100K ETF & ETN Challenge: Daily Log/Updates 11 comments
    Feb 24, 2012 5:04 PM
    seekingalpha.com/article/375431-the-4-da...

    Friday's positioning for Tuesday, when the challenge really begins):

    (Click to enlarge images)

    Friday

    Friday, shortly after the regular session close (ready for Tuesday):

    Tuesday: Day 1 Results & Trades

    Results
    Trades

    Day one was not the burst out of the gate I was hoping for (many of you will recall that I did not get off to a stellar start during the $50k Challenge, either). I made a couple of mistakes and spent a bit too much time away from the office, but am confident that the results, come end of regular session trading on Friday will be there.

    Being down half a percent after day one only strengthens my resolve and I will surely be a bit more focused in the three days to come.

    While it can be frustrating to put a hundred thousand to work for the better part of the day and end up down on it, it shouldn't (and won't) not discourage or distract me from the task at hand. I am well positioned for tomorrow, as from everything I could see, we are looking at a market that wants to go up and is enticing retailers to enter. Patience is the word, and I intend to maintain my discipline to accomplish my objective.

    Here's to a better tomorrow!

    Wednesday: Day 2

    Day two was not a good one, by anyone's standards. Due to time constraints, and as evidenced by the four trades I made, I was clearly unavailable for most (almost all) of the day to be active. As such, I missed out on several opportunities to make critical trades that were there to be had to make the day a profitable one.

    Wednesday: Day 2 Results & Trades

    Data
    Data

    With just two days left to right this ship, I remain vigilant and expect to pull out of the red today as I begin my move towards the 10% goal. Being that this is my challenge, and my money, I may choose to extend the challenge by a day or two to accomplish my objective. I have already learned much through this process, and hope to learn more in the days ahead. Mostly though, I hope to be able to spend the time necessary to make this challenge worthwhile from a monetary standpoint.

    Thursday: Day 3

    Finally an up day and I'm out of the red, though no where near my 10% target. Shortly after my last "stock talk" posts yesterday, I realized that the process of posting my trades was impeding upon my ability to move in and out of the ETFs in a timely (and profitable) manner, so I gave up on that effort altogether.

    Data

    To round off the rest of Thursday's trades: I saw that the market was in the process of grinding upwards, so I dumped my SQQ, VXX, TZA, and FAZ shortly after I purchased them and picked up 250 shares of FAS at $89.03, 250 shares of QQQ at $63.36 and 270 shares of TNA for $60.35. I held those bullish positions overnight and it has turned out to be a wise move (so far). I may decide to allow the challenge to carry through a full five days, so that the challenge would come to its conclusion on Monday, Feb. 27th (that is, of course, unless I meet my objective today).

    Friday: Day 4

    Here are the final results and trades:

    Data

    I have decided to end the challenge as originally scheduled (today). I simply can't financially justify continuing it on through next week, as time is scarce, and roughly 67% of my gains for the week were realized outside of the challenge. I'm glad the week is over and I look forward to analyzing what went wrong and what went right. I took a considerable risk for a 4-day 2.76% gain and while I fell well short of my 10% goal, things could have been worse. It'll be fun writing the wrap-up tomorrow.

    On to the next challenge!

    - Bert

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Comments (11)
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  • Can i ask what trading software and type of orders you are using? Good luck.
    Thanks
    19 Feb 2012, 03:01 PM Reply Like
  • The platform looks to me like thinkorswim from tdameritrade. Good luck! I look forward to watching ... and learning.
    20 Feb 2012, 12:50 PM Reply Like
  • Author’s reply » Thanks bradja1. I hope to learn through this process, as well.

     

    BW
    21 Feb 2012, 08:44 AM Reply Like
  • are you going to update this instablog at the end of the day, and use twitter to shout out your trades intrad-day?

     

    if my calcs r correct, u bought 950 $faz @ $25.39 and sold at $25.69, a $$0.24 gain, netting you $228.00 ?
    21 Feb 2012, 10:08 AM Reply Like
  • i was wondering what you would say about today, how your attitude and outlook would be, and I see it is still positive and full of confidence.

     

    now I want to learn where does this confidence come from, is it simply your willpower, a belief in your ability to conquer the market no matter what happens?

     

    do you ignore any thoughts of panic, or do you not even have those thoughts? if not, why? have you trained and disciplined yourself for many years to focus on positive thoughts?

     

    thank you.
    21 Feb 2012, 07:56 PM Reply Like
  • Author’s reply » Hi Steve. I will address your questions, in full detail, once the challenge is complete.

     

    BW
    23 Feb 2012, 08:29 AM Reply Like
  • Author’s reply » Hi again, Steve. My confidence is the result of years of experience, success, and my ability to compose myself under pressure by completely emotionally detaching myself from any given task at hand. (Don't get me wrong...when I started out trading I got that roller-coaster-type feeling in my stomach quite a bit and was constantly second guessing the actions I was taking and often succumbed to the dreaded "what if I had done this or that" waste of time and energy.) My disciplines and unwillingness to stray from my strategies and second guess myself weren't born overnight. I really don't like to use this analogy, but its much like Tiger Woods' mindset about not even being willing to enter a challenge unless he feels he has the ability to win it all (I am not the Tiger Woods of trading/investing). It really is about being right just a bit more than you are wrong, not wasting time and energy on things that are beyond your control, willingness to leave some on the table, knowing when to cut your losses and NEVER trying to time the market.

     

    To your question about positive thinking- Positive thinking should not be underestimated. I have always done my best to surround myself with positive and intelligent people, put myself in positive situations, and try to envision positive results about any action I take, before they are taken. I also do my best to, in an unbiased manner, understand and appreciate any risk or potential downside to the actions I take, before they are taken.

     

    Hope that was helpful.

     

    Best,

     

    BW
    26 Feb 2012, 12:51 PM Reply Like
  • yikes, i look at this and just can't stomach the risk you took. i don't have anywhere near the money you have available to trade, and to put that much money on the table to trade, and only come out with such a small gain seemed suicidal to me. looking back, it seemed like this was a bad week to try this, not only was it a short week, but many schools had a mid winter break and perhaps many traders were out of the market this week, it sure was a boring week. anyway i look forward to reading your analysis.
    24 Feb 2012, 08:28 PM Reply Like
  • Maybe I read it wrong. But I am looking at your "final results and trades", and I am puzzled with your math. For example, in the XLE trades, you bought 300 shares at $75.34 and sold at $75.26. How did you end up wining $24? It seems that you read the positive and negative numbers in a wrong way. The positive $2756.8 actually means that you LOST $2756.8 for the week, isn't it?
    25 Feb 2012, 03:12 AM Reply Like
  • Author’s reply » Hi jc. You are correct about the negative numbers being realized gains in the subtotals for each ticker, but I took the minus symbol out of the final total so that it would be less confusing. I probably should have just left it for the sake of consistency.

     

    Best,

     

    BW
    25 Feb 2012, 08:17 AM Reply Like
  • If you had traded $FAS today, you could have made a great killing if you bought at the low at 9:45 am and held until 3:59, maybe even overnight.
    27 Feb 2012, 10:45 PM Reply Like
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