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pin and drive

The pin and drive reversal entry trigger

As you might know, I’m mainly a reversal trader. I use other strategies as well, but my bread and butter setups revolve around swing trading reversals.

 

This article is about an entry trigger I often use for my reversal trades. I describe it in my trading plan as pin and drive, which basically means that if I see a pin bar followed by a drive in the opposite direction (a momentum candle, if you wish) AND some additional conditions are fulfilled, I have found that it is often a good trigger to enter a reversal.

 

But first, let’s make it clear what I mean with a chart:

 

Pin and drive reversal trigger examples

 

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Mirror lake

Fighting a continuous market bias

After using a trading journal for a while, I noticed something remarkable. For one specific reversal strategy I trade, around 75% of my trades were sell orders. Unknowingly, I seemed to have a bearish market bias.

 

 

Have you ever experienced something similar?

 

 

You might think that this sounds very similar to what people call a “permabear”, an investor who continuously acts in the expectation that stocks will fall. However, I don’t believe this is the same thing. In contrary to these investors, I don’t have a strong overall bullish or bearish feeling to any market. I will buy just as easily as I will sell. I do, however, have a harder time “seeing” certain bullish reveral setups.

 

I found this a bit unusual, so I looked into it. I found it easier to discover the bearish setups on my charts. I would often look over bullish setups that are exact mirror images of their bearish counterparts, but fail to either spot them or don’t find them convincing enough to trade. After I started monitoring this more closely in my weekly reviews and watchlists, I decided to do something about it.

 

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Closing trades for the weekend

Should you close trades before the weekend?

It’s Friday. TGIF! You already have a drink in your hand and ready for some weekend activities, but you still have one trade open. Should you close trades before the market shuts down for the weekend or not? Multiple traders will give you many different answers. It’s an interesting topic and when you want to know what to do, there are a few considerations to make. I decided to look into it.

 

Close trades or not?

 

Close trades over the weekend

 

Let’s look at two different scenarios. Scenario one shows a trade setup where the trade was kept open over the weekend. Scenario two shows a trade setup where the trade was closed before the weekend.

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Expert advisor trailing stops code

MT4 EA Course: Trailing Stops

This article is part of a series. Here are the other parts:

 

Welcome to the third part of our MetaTrader4 Expert Advisor course! If you haven’t done so, please have a look at first two instalments.

 

Forex Wall-E

In this part, I want to discuss stops. We’ve seen how to create an order with a simple pip-based stop in the previous article. What I want to look at this time, is how to implement dynamic, trailing stops. We’re still working on our Forex Wall-E expert advisor, so let’s continue where we left off!

 

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WhaM, jump

The Easiest Forex Trading Strategy You’ll Find

Today, I want to share a forex trading strategy with you, called WhaM. This trading strategy is so easy to use, even your parents would be able to trade it. I reckon even your dog could trade this. Really, it’s super straightforward.

 

This trading strategy is not created by me. I read about it a long time ago from Will at wmd4x.com, who originally came up with these patterns and found a way to trade them. This is my interpretation of the system and how I currently trade it.

 

It’s one of the strategies I’m actively trading and it’s by far the one with the least moving variables. No indicators. No complicated rules. I don’t even use candlestick charts for this strategy! And most importantly: it just works incredibly well.

 

WhaM forex trading strategy

 

If this sounds like a sales pitch, it’s only because I always get excited telling people about it 🙂 Don’t worry, I’m not selling anything. Everything you need to know to adopt this strategy is right here, in this article. By sharing this strategy for free, I’m hoping that some people will benefit from it. I also want to show that trading systems don’t have to be complicated and trading consistently and profitably is absolutely possible, given proper rules.

 

If, after reading, you feel that this article was useful to you, I’d appreciate it if you share it so more people can learn about this forex trading strategy:

 

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Trading routines

Trading routines: build the habits of top traders

I went from being a bad trader to a good trader after changing this thing only. Afterwards, I couldn’t believe how simple it was. However, it required a different mindset.

 

The secret? Trading routines.

 

Routines or habits are extremely powerful. Marathon runners have the strength to finish a 42km run because of it. No runner is capable of enduring a marathon just like that. Instead, they make the conscious decision to start training. Using an intense routine, they see improvements day after day. Getting closer to running that full marathon. Pushing limits and improving until you make it to the finish line.

 

Marathon running

 

Trading is not that different from running a marathon. We start out by knowing little to nothing about the markets. Day by day, we learn how to trade, interpret candles, patterns and market behaviour. We learn what works and what doesn’t. Some traders find out trading is just not for them or discover other priorities in life. Others persevere. They continue chipping away at the wall that stands between them and trading profitably.

 

Both marathon runners and traders make it because of their routines. It’s an endurance play, without shortcuts. Forget the get-rich-quick attitude. A marathon can’t be finished without training. Similarly, consistent and profitable trading doesn’t happen without continuous improvement. That’s where trading routines come in.

 

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Five whys of trading

Use the 5 Whys to become a better trader

A while ago, I read an excellent book called The Lean Startup by Eric Ries. The Lean Startup describes a new approach for startups, using concepts like building a minimum viable product (or MVP) as soon as possible, innovation accounting, pivots and more. It’s based on lean manufacturing, a production process pioneered by companies such as Toyota and Ford. A highly interesting read if you are interested in starting your own business.

 

The book also details the use of 5 Whys, a technique to explore cause and effect relationships when particular problems are faced. Its primary goal is to find the root cause of an issue, by repeating the question “Why?” five times. Each answer forms the basis for the next question. It takes about 5 iterations on average to get to the root cause of the problem.

 

Here’s an (fictitious) example. Suppose a machine stopped functioning:

  1. Why did the machine stop? There was an overload and the fuse blew.
  2. Why was there an overload? The bearing was not sufficiently lubricated.
  3. Why was it not lubricated sufficiently? The lubrication pump was not pumping sufficiently.
  4. Why was it not pumping sufficiently? The shaft of the pump was worn and rattling.
  5. Why was the shaft worn out? There was no strainer attached and metal scrap got in.

 

The root cause was that there was no strainer attached. If you didn’t ask the 5 whys, you might not ever fix that problem, but instead just try to patch up the resulting issues it caused. The idea is that you make proportional investments to fix each of the 5 whys. This way, the total investment in time fixing the issue won’t be too big but you should still see valuable improvements afterwards.

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Best trading books

The 5 best non-trading books for traders

The more you immerse yourself into trading, the more you’ll discover that the biggest road blocks you’ll encounter have their origins in human behaviour. Trading psychology, emotions, personal development and discipline, to name a few. And while there are plenty of great books on trading psychology, I often enjoy taking a broader view and seeing what I can learn from non-trading books.

 

The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.

– Dr. Seuss

 

To give you an example: while trading, I found it really helpful to be aware of cognitive biases related to losing (e.g. prospect theory and loss aversion), which is described extensively in Daniel Kahneman’s masterpiece; Thinking, Fast and Slow. To approach a certain trading issue from an outside perspective like this can be tremendously helpful.

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5 things holding you back as a trader

Top 5 things holding you back as a trader

I’ve been trading for almost 10 years now. Over the years, I’ve spoken to many traders who are on the verge of making it. Almost there.

 

Technicals or fundamentals knowledge, check.

Willingness to be consistently profitable, double check.

 

Still.

 

These traders are about 80% in their journey to become a consistently profitable trader. Even here, the Pareto principle is doing its magic.

 

They’re like a semi-pro football player almost making it to the Champion’s League. Or the aspiring actor trying to get that big breakthrough role. The trader is missing some essential, but not always obvious elements, and here’s the thing: without proper guidance, some of these traders will be stuck in this state forever. If nothing changes, the next step is gradually losing money and/or giving up.
Which is a shame. These are the traders that have put in considerable effort already, but are somehow missing that something to pull them over the edge of consistency. Do you recognise yourself in this profile? Keep reading. See, once you are at this level, it’s not about knowing how to draw a trend line. It’s not about chart patterns and price action. Most traders in this state of limbo usually even have some trading system.

 

But something’s holding them back.

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Forex tick charts

Forex tick charts and why you shouldn’t use them

Forex tick chartsOnce you’ve been trading for a while, you might have come across forex tick charts. The tick charts are usually accompanied by some explanation on why they’re so much better than traditional candlestick charts.

 

They’re not. Not for spot forex traders at least.

 

In fact, I’ll make the case on why you should not use them, as they hardly contain accurate information. I’ll tell you why in a moment, but let’s first take a step back and explain what tick charts are.

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