I Don’t Believe Trading is a “Numbers Game”
Most traders look at the markets as a “Numbers Game”. Now before I break it down a little bit more I want to be clear that this doesn’t mean I approach the market with no edge. I always dig into the profitability of whatever strategy or trading style I am implementing to make sure there is some edge.
After I’m comfortable with a strategy or once I’ve reestablished the strategy is still profitable I don’t approach the e-mini futures market thinking I must take every trade. I don’t do this because there will always be cases where you simply can’t take a trade. So in all actuality you aren’t “trading the numbers” you’re still picking and choosing. In my mind someone falls back on “the numbers” is someone who doesn’t understand their(retail traders) unavoidable limitations.
I Don't Mean Skip Futures Research?
So if I know that I’m not taking every trade and there’s no way for me to guarantee that I can take every trade, why would I?
As I said before, this is not me advocating skipping your research. In fact I’m just the opposite when it comes to my trading. I dig and research in order to update strategies as well as develop, but I don’t rely on this research as the "say all, be all" trigger to my trade. During the day the market speaks to you in sometimes subtle or even obvious ways. Remember to listen to your research, but only as a crutch.
What To Use If Numbers Aren't Your Thing
I think it’s important to understand that in my own trading I rely more on money management (after working the numbers) than anything else. A few days ago in the futures room I spoke on positioning myself better than I was moments before. If I have the ability to eliminate risk or get rid of an early loss that may have thrown me off earlier I take it. I’ll try to maximize a second or third contract if I have to and I won’t feel bad about taking one off to do so.
To finalize and clear everything up when it comes to “trading the numbers” I’ll say this. If I catch myself thinking the numbers mean everything I simply remind myself that I probably didn’t take the last attempt. If nothing is acting right coming into the trade or leading up to the trade I simply don’t take it and move on. There will be another opportunity down the line.Trading is Not a Numbers Game