Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Anatomy of a SPY trade

I have been asked how I trade the SPY or any other index for that matter, so I thought I'd show everyone my trade today.  This high volatility makes day trading easy but holding overnight a nail biter.

First off, I enter with an initial position when the 10 crosses above the 30 on the 15 minute.  I usually hold a debit call or put spread, but I chose to not place/keep one on last night.  When the 60 minute shows the same crossover I usually add to the trade, but did not as the volatility is so high there was no need or desire to risk more capital.

So coming into today SPY already met my first condition and I was long, and it looked ready to meet my second condition today (which it did). 

In the chart, I laid out my trades, but one more thing I usually do but did not this time as SPY was below its 200, so failure is in the back of my mind, and I chose to hedge with a credit spread vs. keeping a debit spread on as my hedge.  I chose also to end the day with just a debit spread as the SPY is above all resistance until the gap fill.

I point out these exceptions as it is as important to get a feel for the tape and events in shaping your response to trading decisions than just being mechanical.  You definately need to be paying attention.  Anyway enjoy.

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