ETFs & Funds
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Self-taught, quick learner, 40/60 investor/trader.
I enjoy the quality content on this site and the willingness to contibute but there is a wide range of knowledge and quality that should be obvious, with some writers being either unknowledgeable to begin with or having a conflict of interest that makes their bias' obvious I find the best content are often the responses from other retail investors.
Also though, there are my handful of favorites whose articles are very well thought out, relevant, and the obvious product resulting from much hard work and a sincere desire to inform to which I am very grateful.
Caution: NEW INVESTORS should be aware of this range in quality that exists and be
careful not to gravitate to poorly conceived articles that happen to provide verification of your own "hypothesis" for any type of equity!! Never use this forum or any other as the single source for an investment decision unless you are ok with losing big on a hunch or spectacular claim.
Personality: Mellow, modest guy. Don't get into a lot of testosterone being tossed around, but it's interesting to read. Usually well mannered and have no "automatic" axes to grind except I can get worked up by those with extreme political views in addition to intolerant, ignorant viewpoints rigidly held in spite of irrefutable facts that invalidate their position (either regarding investing or just life in general) and now and then, I just HAVE to respond. And always against my better judgement, as there is no persuading these types, which is why they are that way to begin with!! :-)
I'm admittedly no pro and am well aware of how much I don't know which is usually the case I find when I begin intense study in a new area of interest. I let my trading outcomes speak for themselves regarding what my knowledge achieves or when my methods don't work.
Attention to risk management is priority numero uno and the topic fascinates me. That doesn't mean I avoid risky, volatile assets. Just that I allocate using my rules and limit my max loss to known, fixed amount according to my rules.
Always enter positions with entry and exit points determined prior to making it.
Look at ways the newer positions complement other strategies I have put on, using inventory approach for total portfolio all related to Greeks. I work from month to month with each monthly expiration cycle a new set of positions or rolled over, profitable ones.
Big believer in journaling to remind me of my rules and to insure learning from my errors.
I like using options to increase income, speculation, and less often protection/hedge and then, for entire account vs stand alone positions.
Futures is slowly being incorporated into options account, but so far I'm not active and am receiving education through books, webcasts etc while trading paper money account. Ditto for FOREX.
I have a penchant for high probability trades regardless of other factors not related to the underlying. Love time decay and rarely do a trade with --- neg theta.
I limit my positions to number of contracts that expose equal percentage of portfolio on each position using worst case scenario as criteria, which further mitigates risk since I rarely if ever allow for that to occur
I ltrade spreads of all types with known risk/reward and look for volatility skew in underlyings to setup a selling position i prefer selling over buying in most cases, but not an absolute.
I trade underlyings I know well and others I don't. But only interested in highly liquid, 0.05 increments with rare exceptions.
Very interested in and use "the Greeks" for management of entire portfolio vs any one position in a vacuum.
Always trying to learn more and try different strategies. I like legging in as a strategy for building mini-portfolio for a larger, "core" position of the month.
Rarely trade outside of 3 month range, except synthetic positions, which I use somewhat infrequently.
Manage winners and losers with my "rules" and consistently following them.
I have come quite a way considering I am now self-managing 2 growing portfolios. Freely admit that my years of experience is not long, but my voracious appetite to learn and improve my skills is compensating for that, at least so far.
I'm not afraid to pull the trigger and try an idea that meet my criteria, and as a result, I have anywhere from 15-20 option positions open at a given time.
I prefer a variety of small positions (5-10 contracts including all legs per position) in various underlying ETF's or stock vs a few, larger allocations. That means about 150 contracts/month, more or less, making me a VIP with my investment broker!
Also, have been trading the weekly options for very focused plays such as earnings or other anticipated events where a big move is likely on an already volatile underlying.
Generally seeking overall delta neutral but also sell naked puts and add long stock positions for short time frames (until goal is met or max loss occurs) and always trade covered calls and/or sell puts on long positions I acquire. in fact, that is primary condition for owning long stock.
I use 6% as cutoff for max loss on anything (IBD recommends 8%) and feel this may very well be the most important rule to a healthy overall portfolio P/L outcome (along with allocation for any given trade).
Use long option only positions rarely with little patience for downside losses if hypothesis doesn't materialize as expected and quickly. Look for opportunities where I estimate 50-100% gain, and exit right away when goal is met. These plays are definitely the most speculative trades I make, and usually at lower cost basis than typical position.
One of my special interests (of several) is the psychology of the market- all of the various players, their mindsets and motivations while most importantly, paying attention to my own emotional reactions.
Currently developing a scale that I'm using to test accuracy of my "self perceived emotional influence" rating to all trades made with future, ambitious plan to compare results of P/L and other possible, so far unknown correlations to the "emotional influence" rating that I assign each entry, adjustment and exit (subjective, I know). The range is a simple 1-5 with 5 being "highest emotional influence".
I'm pretty good at understanding my state of mind in relation to the range of emotions I experience daily for any given situation (at least I hope I am!!!)
I also am manage an all ETF portfolio, separate from options account and look forward to seeing the results of the two very different approaches on an annual basis. ETF portfolio is managed somewhat actively on my part but usually holds passively managed products. Active BTW, for this account means 1-3 trades/week, and am still looking for right balance between trusting a diversified, non-correlated basket and letting it perform without much interference except monthly analysis (despite daily monitoring-I cant help it!!) which is challenging for me, vs more active rotation into and out of sectors, investment products available, on a monthly or even more frequent basis which I am currently doing. I re-balance using the concept of equal weight to all core holdings and smaller but equal weight to "specialized" products I take profits and always DRIP! I add to underperforming positions with occasional new addition for total of 8-10 ETF's. I use bond funds (treasuries, corporate, munis, international and hybrids of each) country and sector specific ETF's, occasional short term use of inverse and/or highly leveraged products (like VXX, SDS, HDGE, FAZ -but these I am more likely to trade in option account and are never a holding in typical sense) and market weight index funds including US, deveolping and developed foreign markets, with representation range from micro-caps to mega cap and all in between. Try to take advantage of liberal "commission free" program which allows dollar cost averaging into core positions and pay close attention to management fees as well as historical performance for making decisions comparing similar objective based funds.
Switching gears, I am slowly beginning to dislike CNBC as they provoke anxiety based on the mood of the day and it's tough to not let that influence me as an active trader, and usually to my detriment. Now I like music or Tasty Trade alternative which is irreverent to arrogant Wall Street mentality with poorly veiled disdain toward retail investors (totally inot justified IMO).
Live in beautiful Seattle.
Looking forward to making some money whatever the market has in store for us, and being part of this lively, eclectic site.
One thing I feel at times, is I am on my own in a way that can be isolative. Reading other perspectives and interacting with other traders is something I really would like and in lieu of having a best friend / trading guru in same room as me during market for company and exchanging ideas, well, SA and similar will have to do!
Bonds, Commodities, Developed International Markets, Dividend stock ideas & income, ETFs, Energy stocks, Forex, Gold, Options, REITs, Retirement savings, Stocks - long, Tech stocks
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no more Chick fil-
's for me to those who get it. Thanks Jeff Bezoa and wife for amazing support. Market-gotta go down doesn't it?
Jul 29, 2012
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