Rant's of a Perplexed Trader

My 5 cents worth, that’s US legal tender and not the copycat pretender EZ cents!

If you’re going to indulge in futures – make sure you know your macros! Get aligned with the time zones you’re trading within! If there’s an overlap – which is ultimately unavoidable to be honest – find a site that keeps you abreast of the developments.

You’re a Trader, right? Wow what caused that move? I didn’t hear anything on the wires?

There are instances when we’re not privy to information – albeit not signing up to premium services or whichever excuse or reason we pull out of the bag. Takes time for certain headlines to filter through, but have access to charts yes….?

I’ve discussed the issue of knowing your EZ tells before, it’s nothing new – I’m not going to re-invent the wheel or make claims to this knowledge.

I would say add $GBPUSD to your EZ toolkit of indicators / tells. Now I was guilty of exiling CABLE from my screens for the past week and decided to run with $DX_F if anything it will provide a conservative entry for my bias. This blew up in my face during Friday afternoon / US morning. It was a fantastic tell and I was late on the breaks in $ES_F.

$ES_F charts

I had drawn a Fib on my 5 min chart from Tuesday’s high down to Thursday’s low. Notes are on the chart below.

Retaining previous pivots to scan price action and to see which magnets are in play.

Wednesday pulled back to Tuesday’s pivot intraday and formed a double barrier with the 50% handle.

Thursday was a strong collaboration between Fibs, pivots and MA’s

Perhaps the Dragon pattern was in play? Perhaps a bit skewed as not entirely respecting the fib levels.

I had no desire to commit to a short or long position. Not going into fundamentals but I don’t believe the $EURUSD deserves the rise higher – I hold it in content of late – it hasn’t earned my respect .

I mean no condescending spite, just haven’t got far to go before we’re hit with another EZ cry wolf soapbox cliff-hanger.

Anyhow I’ve digressed again. But don’t dismiss my cavalier approach as not being serious, this is uncensored and as always on the fly.  I’m still finding my feet. In terms of which direction I want to take this blog.

Back to the $ES_F chart, fifty’s held up well and guessing some stop hunting expeditions on the 10th/11th equinox have returned a poor kill so something with gusto will be required to push it higher.

Friday, Light on news, bond market closed and Veteran’s Day,  possible scenario would to take profits into the weekend? I was feeling that was the main sentiment,  leave early and take stock off and remember the services and sacrifices of the past and current.

Be good to get a break from the EZ.

$BUND Tell

The first moves of the day can be attributed to the $BUND – new lows, a nice one to trade! I sincerely hope you have your EZ squawk at the fore! Give me a shout or tweet for more info but RANsquwak or Talking Forex are generally good!

Got your attention,  like what you see…not yet okay? A sublte break in the $BUND triggers a nice cascade in the $DAX and $EURUSD and then leads $ES_F

Look at this break in $ES_F, got cable to thank for it and $DX_F begging for attention thereafter.

A pullback and break of the high…now observe the Cable chart below;

Now lets go visit our $DX_F chart for comparison, if anything $GBPUSD provides a stronger signal during the morning anyway!

Now lets bring the whole picture together;

BUND breaking lower  gave the cascade fuel and subsequent breaks followed. Got for a few ticks trading to previous highs.

$GBPUSD fed into this rally and breaking new highs provided the second push in $ES_F – coinciding nicely with S&R levels pullbacks to pivot points, slight lag then get on.

Please draw your own conclusions.

I’m not saying one is superior over the other! And before you ask where is $EURUSD  or $6E_F  am hoping we all have those charts as tells for $ES_F regardless! ?

$BUND $DAX $EURUSD $6E_F and $GBPUSD tells for the morning session overlayed with $CL_F & $DX_F

And then bring in $ZN_F & $SPY

So in short, play and see.



PS thanks to Paul for our daily chats and exchanges please have a look at his blog below.


Apologies, this was supposed to be posted last night – but run out of time.

I’ve posted most off my charts on StockTwits / Chart.Ly  and are linked to Twitter for all to see.

Okay as promised, from the top on the fly, grammatical errors included at no extra cost.

I missed the morning $ES_F and $6E_F / $EURUSD sell off attributed to the Italian bond BTP and other exchanges
hiking the margin requirements forcing investors to liquidate their positions.

It would have been a fantastic trade right from the offset – but where to get on? I don’t like chasing – trading finger has been scolded far too often to attempt that again. I say that from an intraday trading perspective. Generally employ – tight-ish stops 6 – 8 – 12 ticks on increasing momentum respectively.

I hijacked the BUND stream to post the BTP charts, not without asking for permission.

Aside – funny how some on the stream couldn’t recognise the selloff was due to Italy – now it makes perfect sense if trading futures during the EU or whichever time zone you’re in – fire up the news and get the state of the nation. Mini rant over! Oh and yes grab the EZ bond tickers from Bloomberg. StockTwits please take note – for all my US friends and colleagues get hold of a realtime watchlist with streaming macro prices – put it on the home stream or pop out window. Cover your backs until the EZ close.

http://chart.ly/r8s5sgx  http://chart.ly/9jnl4bq  http://chart.ly/w2eauk2

Decided to take my time asses the news, fire up my charts and wait.  Plan was to search levels for the short covering then go long. A dangerous scenario to contemplate, indeed it was! Judging by the recent action 10 – 15 point swings have been the norm of late. I’ll trade what’s in front of me and be flexible in my approach.

Fired up a 1 min $ES_F chart with 9 EMA and 30 WMA’s. 20’s, 50’s to 100 and 200 SMA’s were already on the chart.

Now you’ll have to forgo jet lag and get with GMT – selling pressure was starting to fade just a tad above S2.
Clear from doji’s and little hammers trying to reverse. Volume started to print a change in colour.

1st chart traces area of interest – marking out potential support and resistances / pullback to follow the trend lower – which may come into play on reversal.

2nd Chart highlights illustrates the trades themselves


9 EMA appeared to bottom out, and then crossed 20 SMA. I was ready to enter long on price breaking the previous resistance at 1242.  I wanted to be sure and waited for a candle to close above the reversal and hence entered at 1242.25 @11.47 a.m. The 9 EMA just got above the 20 SMA and crossed the 30 WMA.

Stop below the low and 1st target 1245.25 and the 100 SMA – taking them in succession. Upon failure to break the 100 SMA – I booked a few ticks – nothing to write home about really but acquired what was available at the time.

I then walked away from the screens for a few minutes to get some air.

Just after 1 pm the tape struggled to get above the next resistance higher at 1248. Far too early to get involved again – so I set about applying a trend line resistance tentatively kissed  3 contacts then made a parallel copy and found 3 down side contacts. Content with the confirmation, as rarely do you come across textbook squeaky clean channels I was happy to ignore the candle wicks.

Not bothered about the temporary foray below S2. The channel was in place!

Waited 15 mins for the cash open dust to settle got in tune with the MA cross overs then shorted on the 4th wick descending into the channel and this time I was holding out for the channel
support / double bottom.

Time stamp – will remove this friday night

That was that – then sat back and gave a running commentary to the newbies in a chat room with a firm I’m affiliated with – giving market profile targets.

I tried to give a running commentary, today – but it was truly tricky balancing the Trading, chat and posts whilst the EZ circus tested my fuse. EZ squawk was gang raping my ears with filth with consecutive speakers. Will run my ears under the shower for the umpteenth time.

We’ve had the Japanese earthquakes, nuclear reactors and tsunami, Arab Spring but this EZ is the worst I’ve ever encountered. I only traded 1 contract today and gave back  6 points – I don’t trade
my PnL but levels – hopefully clear to see on my shared posts and charts. But suffered poor risk management.

I predominantly trade the following although I don’t post everything on Chart.Ly as I try to avoid duplicity if its already out there.

Main tells,  EU Session  $CL_F   $DX_F   $6E_F   $EURUSD $BUND   $DAX   $STOXX   $FESX_F

US crossover add $ZN_F   $SPY  $GE and to lesser extent $JNK for $ES_F

Have a look at previous blog posts on how I use these.

An apology if this is oversimplified and if I’ve gone off at tangents. Not very articulate of late. Still need to sort out this blog layout.

Have a great evening



PS email questions or tweet /Stocktwits

QUESTION At last we have endured, survived the European Ground Hog Day Quarter..! Stronger for it, yes?

THOUGHTS Ears taking a muted rest from the painfully, exasperating inaction of the Politbureau. Soon to be welcomed by the patter of trick or treaters’

Politbureau – that’s a bit harsh do you really see them in that light? Err, yes I do Merkozy as a bullying manifestation cracking the central committee whip! Not that I want to paint pictures in your mind – but with the recent tirade of cartoon and Photoshop’ed attachments riding the email highways.

One particular picture I found most disturbing, no it’s not the, I’m too sexy for my party. It’s the Rosemary’s Baby rip off!

I haven’t got a copy so please don’t ask, but I would happily recommend plucking your eyeballs out with a spoon to remove that picture etching onto the retina. Then again, hey it’s Halloween!



Intuition was strong today and put that down to having an open mind! Have to say I was still trying to shed my bearish coat.

Markets didn’t really participate until after the EU close, a few technical breaks set the domino’s tipping over. Greece a complete farce post bailout referendum – only a matter of time for the apocalyptic rating agencies to throw poo at the fan for the umpteenth time!

I feel like Michael Corleone in Godfather part 2 or is it 3?  Just when I think I’m out they pull me right back in again – time to put on my fur coat once again!

Emerging markets must be laughing at the EU – South Korea, now willing to offer? Dear god it truly makes me sick with them bickering and IMF dishing out handouts – whereas 3rd world nations could probably make better use of aid – corrupt governments aside.  China will surely own Merkel in time, Sarkozy and Berlusconi already answer to the come here  bia-!

We don’t do Halloween in the UK like the US, just not big over here and so I’m still up fine tuning a few charts;

Market profile – tried to get value are highs and low with Point Of  Control lines but the charting package doesn’t have it.  Have a basic tick distribution on a 5 min chart with 9 EMA over 30 WMA – no great on the eyes to be honest!

And a 1224 tick chart with the same MA’s and poor excuse of VAH’s called dynamic value horizontal line


$DAX $BUND $STOXX ($FESX_F) on the Twitter and Chart.ly streams. I would post some $EURUSD and $ES_F $SPY charts and may do so in future but there’s some fantastic posts out there. And lastly – we always use $EURUSD as a leading tell for the $SPX or e mini.

I’ll apologise for the EU rant above if it has offended you – but just remember it’s not the Trader who messes with the economy – we police it!

Book him Dano !






And that is to drink to their health!

Prop up the economy and increase liquidity! If you think this is wrong – don’t despair think of it as part of your 5 a day!


I will be helping Portugal

Nothing quite like a Tawny Port – with the days getting shorter and colder and Winter on our heels.

Pour yourselves a small glass.


Luck of the Irish, me thinks! I’m spoilt for choice, the black stuff or the flat Lucozade alternative cider. Can’t disappoint Patrick.


Italy, Pizza Pie and a shot of Sambuca, capische? Limonchela just won’t do! Ciao

but if you fancy a mid week party better make it a flaming one!


Greece, the never ending story. Leave a bottle of Metaxa above the door frame. First one out deserves one for the road!


Last but not least, Viva Espania!

Have a great weekend all!



PS Apologies if you were expecting charts, they’re all on StockTwits!

Click on chart to enlarge.

Some patterns just scream at you!   I found it extremely difficult not to post this chart;   it’s been glaring back at us since August.

I had drawn inspiration from Phil Pearlman’s blog post and from which I was compelled to reply, exchange can be found on twitter and StockTwits.

Nothing further to add, todays unfolding events are on my twitter paper trail.

Have a great evening!


This is starting to get exasperating, 2 days on the run putting up with intermittent internet problems. First it was Firefox, strange phenomena web pages would only open on mouse movement, yeah go figure! I fired up ie9 and another kettle of fish – ads – slowing it down further.

Just thankful I wasn’t in any trade, well I had no choice as I was constantly frozen out I couldn’t participate anyway – most annoying.

Chart posts held up well within reason. Finally managed to get a few trades off but not ideal, required the usual Jedi patience.

Shorting $SE_F and $EURUSD

Had to move the stops a bit higher on the EURUSD short and scaled in.

$ES_F short was far from perfect almost running on fumes when I got in, 20 SMA on 5 min chart running the action and placed a stop upside of S1. Covered just above the lower median line on 15 min chart

Then reversed and went long with the short covering charge, targetting the 50 SMA on 5 min chart but got out just shy of the 50 SMA. Ttrading of both 5 & 15 min timeframes, but predominantly 5 mins.

Both $EURUSD and $ES_F were triggered at the same time, however the euro was booked 1st.

I did mention that I was going to blog $ES_F correlations with $CL_F, $ZN_F with the $6E_F and $AUDUSD FX pairs.

Last night as I was following the stream I came across it being mentioned and a few times before that. I  said  to myself, hold on! This goes without saying, doesn’t it? $EURUSD leading?

I was following market action till 4 am BST almost to the point when songbirds catch the morning worm.

Same old adage applies here, of never leaving an overnight position without supervision or playing futures when the players have gone home to roost.

$6E_F is a bit skittish after the EU close anyway

I’ve found that the $AUDUSD to be a much better leader for sleeper trades (overnight)  and I guess I tried to overlay that and illustrates the forward idiosyncrasies of  Aussie over the Euro, yet the chart I posted not to my liking.


A weekly scale had to suffice as not got live data on PRT for those instruments on a shorter timescale.

So, I’m sorry I will abstain from following through on that broken promise and allow another curious trader to attempt the correlation post, long term isn’t the issue – I was aiming for intraday comparisons. Line charts don’t float the boat, candles offer some reference and forced judgement of analysis. We will see time for inspiration and may post at the end of this week.

I’ll post a few charts on the final trades of the day, as before I will only offer the tells as I can’t offer you time stamped charts but will again show the CQG sheets at the end.

Charts 6pm BST

Dollar was leading around this time, and simple entry points -were far from perfect and thus acted on the lack of interest in the price  high five – ing the previous resistance.

The second entry exit trade was based more on the short covering of the $ES_F on the lows and this break above the resistance only added confidence to me picking the bottom to go long with the pitchfork although I was dwelling offside for sometime and close to being stopped out, only a few ticks below the low. http://chart.ly/rqfjuw8


I was close to having an attack of some sort, when I watched Oil drop – but $ES_F said talk to the dollar. $ES_F not reacting to Oil at all. A fair move but no reaction??

10 yr was a bit weak on the high’s and the doji’s just confirmed reason to enter short

$SPY with the 20 SMA sounding off as with 20 SMA giving cover to price on 5 min $ES_F

A day of risk management with min contracts, just incase Mr internet decided to leave me out in the cold again! Nothing spectacular, far from modest – but an up day and happy for that alone!

Think a correlation post would be far more interesting, will also try to give one or two Ichimokus and market profile analyses – just to get away from duplicating my Chart.ly posts

Have a great evening!


This was supposed to be released last night but due to technical difficulties I lost my post and sending this out in a slightly revised format.

As you know I generally kick off with the European commentary but not before catching up on the Asian session overnight. I’m reluctantly posting, what is in essence, now an end of day group of indicator charts. Two sets, 15 mins and 5 min.

Thereafter, I will return to the usual schedule of yesterday events using time stamped charts as posted on Chart.ly

And the 5 min chart, I have shaded Light Sweet Crude, 10 Year and $ Index 17:00 – 18:00pm BST and will describe a trade that sucked during the US halftime, towards the end of the post.

Okay, got remote in hand now rewind back to yesterday – lets begin!

Just when you thought it was safe to go to sleep – Standard & Poor’s takes rating action on Spain (S&P doc) ~ 3 a.m BST, rubbed my eyes, glanced at the colour blind test numbers to ensure I read that tweet correctly.  Impetuous to set up earlier than usual, ran through Euro charts with an outlook negative!

You can drown your sorrows during the Oktoberfest but it’s going to be ‘The Hangover 3.’ come G20.

I couldn’t give a Castlemaine four X. Will wait and see what happens – caution the 4 X is  taken from an old Aussie beer commercial so don’t blame me if you google that and get more than what you bargained for!

Papandreou’s going to lose a tooth, Sarkozy’s going to wake up but naked on Merkel’s floor with ring on finger and an I love Angela tattoo across his chest.

Jean Claude, will be the only beneficiary out this fiasco who’s probably in for  a golden handshake – will mis his aaacom-moooooo-daaaaaaaaaay-tive and other contradicting price stability sound bites.

Geithner and Lagarde will be wetting themselves with hysteria in the Elvis Chapel having already purchased bailout souvenirs, to be honest who really cares it’s beyond a joke more like a nightmare on Sesame Street – focus is now on the election circus and occupy which ever street you can!  It will be interesting to see what this sleeping giant manages to achieve. The Arab Spring had a purpose a means to an end, is it time for results at this end?

You can come up with any spoof scenario at will, either way you slice it, it’s an expensive movie – save yourselves from buying the ticket and overpriced popcorn and wait for the re runs on cable.


First chart of the day in full Technicolor, is one of Stoxx50 Index Futures have laid up bipartisan trades running North & South with the same Channel in place.

5 min chart, 12:13 BST http://chart.ly/asd83x4

Mirrored by the BUND 15 mins chart 12:42 BST http://chart.ly/ium9vw2

Looking good so far, with some interesting channels and near perfect double tops and bottoms.

Shame I had to zoom into the DAX chart, I was unable to print a clear channel so I have only shown the ascending channel support line with double bottom. http://chart.ly/uicosn8

In the middle of a vote of confidence to verify if Berlusconi still knows how to organise a party and waiting if the man in the white suit and panama hat from Del Monte says ‘Party On’ sorry ‘Yes’

Retail Sales leading the way, decent reaction in US Futures and $EURUSD and euro indicators lagging behind, not as dramatic as I had expected as the BUND was close to test the support  http://chart.ly/gr2ra3g but perhaps a simple precaution ahead of the US cash open and the Michigan Confidence data.

Although the DAX did play peek a boo above the big Six Oh level, albeit for an instant to reminisce in pastures old before returning to the poor side of the fence http://chart.ly/6xuknf3

Oil futures jumping the gun and giving the EURUSD and DAX a lift higher, initial spike in the previous candle just highlighting the proverbial dollar strength common on data releases.

If you’ve got the appetite of an adrenaline junkie and reflexes of a black box pretending to travel at the speed of light – get in there! http://chart.ly/8xdndwx

Not had the time to post actual $EURUSD or $ES_F charts on this occasion as I was simply focussed on my trades and as usual I had too many lines!

So, now it’s 8 mins after the Nymex Pit and the 10 yr is looking quite heavy ahead of cash on Michigan, similar pullback as observed on Wednesday 12th at 18:00 BST. So a possible triple bottom outlook.

10 yr dropping out of one channel to the next giving a soft ‘V’ shape pattern, well ‘U’ shape really! http://chart.ly/8ggvw4v did suggest some divergences in play but I tend not to trade off them, as the components required to plot slope on the RSI or MACD histogram is generally sufficient to get you to trigger a trade anyway!

So scrolling through the tells, I noticed another channel on the BUND http://chart.ly/wi3egtp and decided to play the EURUSD on the back of this.

If you’re familiar with and up to speed on recent conversations, you’ll appreciate that I’ve taken to Ichimoku like a duck to water! Pick n mixing with Andrew’s pitchforks and the use of bread  and butter pivots, support and resistance.

Set about scalping on a 2 min chart http://chart.ly/8b9kjag and BUND looking heavy nearing the close and now a head and shoulder in the mix, good that a few members got in on the conversation – can’t say how I was feeling about the head and shoulders, was it a viable pattern or just  coincidence as I’ve been criticised for pointing out patterns outside the StockTwits and Twitter arena, that weren’t technically correct as it’s not on a high so it’s not this and that – to be honest it’s all relative on the timescale that you’re operating on. Just as you can see shapes and patterns in clouds – constantly shape shifting. Merely pointing out an observation and the rest is down to personal judgement – It’s not an excuse as I stand behind my posts – charts never lie, despite being proven to be wrong on many occasion.  Just as some waiting for the H&S to break on the flipside have stop hunters and bulls reinforcing the line – a sentiment play on technicals. Hmm this is dangerously close to becoming a rant – time to move on.

http://chart.ly/3vomdsx had to decide how are we going to play this game of paper, scissors, stone/rock or break, reverse, or resistance.

I did say that we were channel hopping today!  10 yr knocking out a range, volume dropped off after the main event and was considering if this channel was leading up to key resistance on the $SPY and a giant flush into the close..? http://chart.ly/8m398dj

Last Trade of the Day

I decided to play this range, and it was a  slow grind – and before you ask. No it was not boredom trading – the range was in place – just that Oil  was slow to react in my timeframe decided to wake up after I got out.

I was long based on the 10 yr  channel resistance. I knew I was going to be in for at least 30 mins to possibly and  1 hr depending on volume

$ Index starting to run out of juice and Oil ranging and but $SPY failing to get up,

So $ Index and $SPY was a major concern but 10 yr was the most active and currently lighting the way forward and so I stayed with my long $ES_F

You can argue that I should have waited for the prevailing candles to close

Should I have taken a few ticks when the opportunity presented itself, quite possibly!  But I wanted to target the $ZN_F support line and not had a tick nor point target for this trade.  I will patiently wait for the $SPY to go higher at key resistance to take profits. Then reverse the trade on covering and then looking to ride the potential short trade on flush to the close. With an idea of taking intraday pit stops at nearby moving averages, sounds reasonable…

$CL_F was starting to fade and toggling between different timescales wasn’t helping me – in fact the price action was giving me conflicting messages.

I eventually got out a few ticks shy of a scratch – not happy to see it pull higher thereafter – and I also got the close wrong too! I could say that’s life – but I’ll stick with ‘hands up I got it wrong!’

Charts below, highlight an estimate of my entry an exits – I was trying to match up the timeframes for visual aid only – and the expanded EOD charts not really doing justice to the moment – but I hope you get the gist of the trade!

Trading the $ES_F on a 2 min and the $CL_F $ZN_F $DX_F and $SPY tells were actually on  5 min charts.

I hope I’ve checked for spelling mistakes!

My last few streams have been cut short and reckon that my smartphone is playing stupid for some reason and I’ll say what I was trying to post now.  Key data for tomorrow.

Enjoy what’s left of the weekend and catch you all tomorrow!



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