Thursday Morning Briefing

Welcome to our morning briefing. Here we are reviewing short term setups ahead of the NYSE opening bell. If you are a scalper or swing trader then these setups may be of interest to you. As usual keep in mind that these are short term setups although they could be used as early entries for more longer term positions.


The E-Mini has been holding its ground overnight – as you can see where a bagel throw away from the 25-day SMA as well as the 25-week SMA. Actually right now this second being short with a tiny position (e.g. 1/4 R) has very low odds BUT a potentially large pay-off as your stop would be only a handle or two away. So given an eight tick stop your R size now has quite a bit of delta. Given that the VIX has come down quite a bit a few ATM options may also do the trick. As I’m still holding longs this is what I’m actually doing right now via the Spiders. Stop is a handle above the 25-day SMA (on the E-Mini – you can do that in TOS).


The Dollar looks like it’s ready to pop higher – I’ll be long on a breach of 85.905 – my ISL will be below the prior candle’s low (triggers on the chart).

Otherwise not much going on. Except that I beefed up our Futures Risk Calculator a little. Someone emailed me about a few missing symbols and I added them in. I also revamped the margin numbers and based them on Interactive Brokers, which is a pretty good retail standard (if you’re not with IB your margin will most likely differ, so check that out).



I also added a link on the bottom that points to basic contract specs, in case you have any confusion about tick/point size, trading hours, etc. And if you like this one I guaranteed you will love our Forex Risk Calculator – no changes there but if you’re trading Forex it’s essential for converting between currencies and calculating your R size. Obviously we are using these two in conjunction with Thor – so if you’re in the beta testing group you definitely want to check out both.

It’s not too late – learn how to consistently bank coin without news, drama, and all the misinformation. If you are interested in becoming a subscriber then don’t waste time and sign up here. The Zero indicator service also offers access to all Gold posts, so you actually get double the bang for your buck.


Muppet Time!

It never fails. Despite all efforts to the contrary a handful of you retail rats accidentally find yourselves in the midst of a winning campaign. Invariably early withdrawal symptoms to your expired ADHD meds are starting to appear as the urge to do something (i.e. take profits now or otherwise ruin your odds of long term profitability) is growing by the hour. After all, winning is not something you are accustomed to and there’s no social media support network backing you up as everyone now hates your guts and hopes for an opportunity to urinate onto your shallow grave. For it is lonely at the top and you are on your own.

Now I have tried many times to drill this point into your rodent brains but apparently the reflexive Pavlovian response is tantamount to my childhood attempts of stacking snausages onto my dog’s snout. Very rarely do you get a to a count of three as Woofy simply can’t wrap his canine brain around the fact that the longer he is able to wait the bigger the pay-off. In the end all this boils down to the fact that the half-life time of your ability to sit still and do nothing is shorter than that of your average field mouse.


Now, to answer the question on your mind: Yes, and no. It all depends on your trading style.

Oh, what was the question you ask?

Is it a good time to take profits here?

Well, obviously it’s a great opportunity to shake out the muppets. Look at the chart below and what I posted yesterday. If you got positioned when/where I told you to on Monday morning then you are an honorary member of the strong hands club right now (no secret decoder ring). And this grants you the rare luxury to do nothing and let things run its invariable course. For every time you are in an ongoing campaign there is only one equation you should be concerned about:

What is the ratio between opportunity and risk right now?


Meaning, what are the odds the tape is going to advance (or drop) more than the odds for it to reverse and stop me out (wherever your stop is). This is not an easy answer and it depends on your trading style. For automated systems for example I painstakingly measure the average MFE and MAE of each system and then use those statistics to arrive at an optimum campaign management style.

For discretionary campaigns you employ a fuzzy logic approach based on your pertinent experience and again your trading style, which can be shifted as the campaign unfolds and new evidence is revealed. That however requires strict personal discipline and that right there discounts 90% of all participants. I know I know – the truth hurts – you can blame your Kindergarten teacher or some dramatic childhood experience if that makes you feel better. Believe it or not – I don’t come here to stomp on your fragile egos – no matter how tempting.


Now for me personally here right now I am more concerned about the possibility for the bears to have their faces ripped off. And the odds are about 50/50 that this will happen in the coming week. However we still cannot discount the the possibility that we may retest the lows or drop even lower. Plus today’s event schedule offers a ton of opportunity for monkey business across the board. The bears still have a prayer of a chance to turn the table as long as we remain below the 25-day SMA.

I for one am perfectly happy to endure a deep retrace because if this eventually continues higher I’ll be holding it all the way. And if it fails – well, I’m out at break/even. So my worst case sceneario is to lose nothing and the best case scenario is to smile all the way to the bank. Again. Remember the Dollar campaign two months back. Same idea and same approach.


On the setup side I really like crude this morning which seems to be gaining a bit ground. Besides everyone hates it right now which increases the odds of a little surprise squeeze. I’m putting half an R on long above the 25-hour SMA – stop below 82.

More charts and commentary below for anyone donning a secret decoder ring. If you are interested in becoming a Gold member then don't waste time and sign up here. And if you are a Zero subscriber you get free access to all Gold posts, which gives you double the bang for your buck!

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Words to the wise:


For some of you it is important to realize that trading is not a spectator sport. Invariably you will get the crap kicked out of you a few times and everyone processes that experience in different ways. Some simply walk away, others dust themselves up, learn their lessons and jump back into the ring. But there are many who cling onto the dream and at some point decide to become some sort of couch coach. A lot of self deception and pain avoidance is at play here but essentially it makes you feel as if you’re still part of the game. ZeroEdge is full of these people – the vast majority of them haven’t executed a trade in years.

Drawing lines on a chart and talking about it doesn’t make you a trader – only placing trades and accepting the invariable consequence of either winning or losing does that for you. Even if you’ve had a tough year and you may decide to sit things out for a while there will come the day when you have to get back on the horse. When you’re at that point we are here to help you and guide you along. But it’s unproductive to come here post some illustrious charts without intent to use them for trading. At best it’s a boring academic exercise and at worst it’s a waste of your and our time.



Hurdles Ahead

We have come a long way in the past three sessions but the easy part of the journey is now nearing its end. For there are hurdles looming ahead plus I’m seeing some signature signs of short term shenanigans flashing all over the place. Let’s start with where we are right now:


Quite a climb since that is and there’s probably room for a few more handles. But bear in mind that we are now facing a trifecta of previously tested moving averages – at least per my lens and more often than not they have been observed.


On the NQ things are looking quite a bit more bullish – AAPL definitely had a thing or two to do with that. However daily resistance is right ahead and we’re about to smack into it. On the weekly panel we’re however above the 25-week SMA, so that’s pretty positive.


Today’s session looks like it’s been on cruise control – the Zero also suggests that the bots are driving this one higher.


Quarterly volatility has eased off quite a bit along with the VIX and the ratio has been leading the advance in the past few sessions. All good and given that we’ve got more than a week of trading ahead of us it’s not impossible that the bulls may actually pull this off and close the month above the NLSL.

So much for the good news – now let’s talk about some of the concerns:

More charts and commentary below for anyone donning a secret decoder ring. If you are interested in becoming a Gold member then don't waste time and sign up here. And if you are a Zero subscriber you get free access to all Gold posts, which gives you double the bang for your buck!

Please login or subscribe here to see the remainder of this post.


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