Category Archives: Stock Market

First half 2018 recap



Missed Opportunities: IRDM, BID, COUP

11 trades total, 6 winners and 5 losers. Good for a 54.5% win rate. R/R ratio of 1.8x for a total of 9.8% in 2018 while the S&P is 1.7%.


Looking to get long AKS if it touches 5.86

I’ve been observing interesting action in AKS since the huge volume coming in last Thursday 3/1 when it gapped up and traded higher after a few days of selling off, forming a bullish kicker like candlestick signal. The volume is particularly noteworthy as AKS traded over 71M shares that day vs an average of approximately 20M, with Thursday’s session being the highest amount of shares transacted on a green day in years. Based on this, I am looking to get long AKS on follow through above Thursday’s high of 5.84 as I believe clearing this point of resistance could catapult the stock to 7+ in a short amount of time. Therefore, my trade is as follows: Buy AKS if it touches 5.86 with a goal of accumulating shares at 5.86 or better. Target 7+ to take profits and using last weeks low of 5.15 as a stop. In other words, risking about $0.72 to make $1.15+. Using this relationship I am looking position size to risk about 1.5% of my overall portfolio to make 2.5-3%. Earnings are on 4/23 and AKS does not offer a dividend.

AKS Daily Chart from 3/2/18

Closed out OKTA for 14.6% in a week

OKTA trade from last week worked out beautifully and quickly. Doesn’t get any better than this. I was happy to take profits today as it hit my target of 36 (sold at 35.75 just to be safe, although it did briefly go above 36 intraday with a high of 36.09) and didn’t want to stay involved thru next week’s earnings and run the risk of giving back gains. This is good for a 14.6% gain in 5 trading days. Keeping an eye out for more opportunities like this.

OKTA daily chart

New Trade – Long OKTA

OKTA caught my eye on Jan 22 when it hit my high volume scanner on Finviz. It’s had less than a year of trading (April 2017 IPO) and I’m particularly intrigued due to the range that it has been trading within since September. For the past 5 months OKTA has been bouncing back and forth roughly between 25 and 32. Most recently, in January 2018 OKTA had a high of 31.19 and I went long today on the break above and was filled at 31.20. My thesis is that it’s making a new monthly high which is the first step in breaking out of the narrowing monthly consolidation, and therefore should continue going higher. From here, I am targeting a move to approximately 36 and using the 28.8 area as my stop, roughly a 2/1 reward to risk ratio. If the trades is a loser, I’ll lose X and if it’s a winner I’ll make at least 2X. OKTA does not offer a dividend and earnings appear to be either the last week of Feb or the first week in March.

2/20/18 update – Closed out OKTA for 14.6% in a week

OKTA daily chart

Stocks Climb, XIV Destroyed

Interesting day in the markets again today trading in a wide range with the SPY gapping down nearly 4 points to open at 259.94 and close 9 points higher near the day high above 269. The market seemed to be bracing for the worst and we opened lower there were quickly buyers stepping in to drive prices higher throughout the day. It actually gave the feeling that the market wants the selloff to be over. From a technical standpoint, it’s not unrealistic to have support where there was previously resistance, using the 259 area from November in the SPY for example. Nearly a 10% correction in the matter of a week. Certainly isn’t pretty, but would be acceptable to carry on from here and grind higher to continue the bull market. As usual, I’ll be observing and letting the price action play out and decide which way it truly wants to go.

SPY Daily Chart

SPY Intraday chart

And as expected following yesterday’s after hours trading, the XIV Inverse VIX ETN got destroyed today and lost 92% of its value. I have no intention of ever getting involved in one of these VIX related ETF/ETNs, much less an overnight position. If you’re day trading and use short term momentum then it may work for you, but for holding overnight and longer term it seems like a potentially lethal move as seen today.

XIV Snapshot

And my trading plan remains the same, let the dust settle and continue to search for high volume weekly breakouts. Currently hanging onto ORIT from 16.75 and ERF from 10.41.

“Stairs Up and Elevator Down”

What an ugly trading session today and a miserable start to the week. Last Friday’s trading session was an indication of selling pressure picking up with the SPY closing beneath the 8EMA on heavy volume as seen below.

SPY daily chart

Today’s session opened lower and continued going lower throughout the day, with a flash down happening around 3:11pm followed by a slight recovery only to find stocks settling at or near lows into the close. Some Dow stocks like AAPL and INTC were green in the morning and by the afternoon became red like the rest of the average. The S&P closed -4.18%, Dow Jones -4.6%, and Nasdaq -3.78%.

SPY Intraday chart

This brings the overall markets trading back where we were in the first week of December. Not the end of the world, just retracing a couple months of action. After all, with double digit % gains in 2017 it has to be expected to enter a correction, I just don’t think anyone was expecting such a sharp pullback less than two weeks from making new all time highs. Am I saying the selling has stopped? Absolutely not, in fact there was lots of chatter on Twitter today about the XIV Inverse VIX falling 14% intraday and then absolutely crashing after hours over 80%. Ouch. Some speculating that there could be further selling into tomorrows session as a result.

XIV snapshot

As I’ve only been trading stocks for a couple years, I can hardly recall a day with such heavy selling and fear in the markets as today. Maybe the flash crash in Aug 2015? At any rate, I’m not going to let the noise from today interfere with my strategy: buy multi week/month breakouts forming on high volume. I’m currently holding two stocks, ERF and ORIT, and will respect my stop price if it touches. In scanning for new positions, I think it’s important to be more selective with overall market conditions more volatile right now and consider position sizing a bit smaller until things level out a bit.


New position: long ERF

Bought shares of ERF today at 10.41. Discovered the stock after yesterday’s high volume breakout above the 10.20-10.30 area. Over the past 13 months ERF has approached the area a number of times and pulled back. Yesterday it broke above the resistance area and did so on 2.7 million shares volume vs a 10 day average of 870k. So at this point I at long from 10.41, will consider adding some more shares on a pullback into the 9.60 range, targeting 14+ to take profits and using 8.2 as a stop loss.

ERF weekly chart

What to look for in 2018

Refresher: What to look for in 2018? Multi week/month breakouts like the ones below.

Successes from 2017:


LULU weekly chart of 2017

TRP – high volume breakout

TRP daily chart Feb-July 2017

Missed opportunities:

PLCE – high volume breakout

PLCE daily chart Apr-Dec 2017


INTC weekly chart of 2017

VOD – high volume breakout

VOD weekly chart of 2017


What’s the next one?

SD – high volume breakout in progress

SD daily chart

OTEX – high volume breakout in progress

OTEX daily chart

Nice LULU profits after recent earnings

LULU announced positive earnings after hours on Wednesday 12/6 and with the stock surging on Thursday I sold most of my position, about half on the open at 73.23 and a quarter at 72.10. With my original target around 71.50, anything at these levels is icing on the cake. Looking to close out the position on continuation to the upside or if it breaks below Thursday’s low of 71.29.

LULU daily chart from 12/8/17

Gearing up for LULU earnings

I’ve been holding LULU since October 23rd when it broke out of the 4 month range of 56.56 and 63.86. Initial buy was at the price of 64.24 and then added some on November 2nd at 60.89 for an average price of 63.15. In planning the trade, I targeted approximately 71.50 to take profits and using 59 (low price of 10/18) as a stop.

LULU ended the trading day today at 66.36 and is scheduled to report earnings tomorrow, 12/6/17, after the bell.

LULU daily chart from 12/5/17