Thursday 19 April 2007

Adventures in Day Trading - day 1

DW and I sat up for two hours with our shorted $100,000 AUD/USD spot price position open, watching the Aussie dollar drop from 0.8360 to a low of 0.8358 and then bounce around 60/62 for ages. In the end we gave up (the down trend seemed to have petered out) and closed the position with a net profit of USD$70.00

Of course DW started musing that "if I could make $50 a day trading while on maternity leave..." which I had expected. I'm not too worried that she'll get carried away and lose any substantial amounts of money, as she was happy to agree to call trading quits for the day if she loses more than $100 in a session.

It was funny that because the AUD had initially gone up a few pts after we opened our short position, and we had used the entire $1000 I had sitting in the account for the trade, we didn't have our margin covered for a short while at the start. This morning my email box had a "margin call" for AUD$23.89 which had apparently been automatically generated when we initially went into the red and didn't have the full $1000 margin covered. As we had closed out our position at a profit after a couple of hours I just ignored the email. It was my first ever "margin call", despite having used margin loans for my stock portfolios for over ten years.

It's interesting that I view trading differently from DW. I think that trading (especially synthetic trades like CFDs) is a zero-sum game, and any winning streak we have will be due to "luck" rather than any great trading skills. DW on the other hand imagines she will be able to trade profitably be anticipating market moves. Then again, when we occasionally visit a casino I'll stick to the $5 blackjack table and attempt to count cards to shift the odds in my favour, whereas DW carefully studies the patterns of numbers that have come up on the roulette wheel and can see "patterns" in the sequences of (random) numbers that have come up.

Perhaps DW's degree in economics makes her more likely to view random events as having some underlying, predictable basis, whereas my degree in applied science makes me view more of the things that go on in life as simple random, and unpredictable, events.

Anyhow, at the end of day 1 as a day trader, DW's account balance is AUD$1000 and USD$70 - for a total value of AUD$1083.64. If you annualise this out our ROI so far is around 3,100% pa! Perhaps I should start a "secrets of day trading success" newsletter ;)

Enough Wealth

1 comment:

mOOm said...

Because trading is zero sum around the overall return on that asset class doesn't mean there can't be skill. The zero sum idea applies to any actively managed investment. But unless you follow all the macro news and/or have some technical analysis model you aren't likely to have skill in foreign currency trading.

With an econ degree she should know all about statistical significance etc?