Tuesday, 30 June 2009

The heat is on

Well this past week has been very busy for me. I took Thursday and Friday off in preparation for a house party I had, which ended with great success! The best party I have ever hosted.

I'm sure many of you, as well as myself, have been struggling with this heat. It's been so hot I was getting very agitated this morning trying to think of a solution. If you read a couple of posts earlier back, you'll know I was struggling with the heat. It really affects my decision-making and everything else that's needed to trade - mostly mental strength. It drains me and I've realised more than ever how important it is for me to work in a cool environment. I got to the point this morning that I was taking someone's advice on here and phoning around to see what office space with air conditioning was available within walking distance of me for the summer. There are two floors at the bottom of my block of office space that hasn't been in use for months and months, so I gave that a go, but they weren't interested, as it would only be for a couple of months. I have a portable air conditioning unit, but it's so loud I actually lost concentration the other day and lost several hundred in one race as a result of not being in a comfortable environment. Anyhow, I remembered I had a pair of Shure in-ear headphones - I put them in, and they instantly dramatically reduced the noise; with my music or the TV makes in completely bearable. I also repositioned the air con unit so that the air more specifically cooled the area I was in rather than the other side of the room. This is as well as the 76% heat reflecting film I have cover the whole of the window! So now I've got the heat sorted - I can focus my efforts back to pulling out some good results out of the bag which I have been really lacking of this month - which I think was down to the heat. It all links in with having a clear head whilst trading - which is so important if you want success in trading to come your way.

In the next couple of posts I will make sure I get that Exit Points post done soon. I'll do it after tomorrow's update of how June went for me, and my general overview of the markets. I'll try and strike a good balance between helpful information for to improve your trading, and information that isn't so useful; but may serve as a motivational source.

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Blag a million

Well, the Blag a Million project is officially under way and this Monday they blagged all my profit from the afternoon's trading session. Here is the video:

My progress has continued at the same rate as it did throughout May. The days are sunny, and sitting inside is a bit of a pain! I've been making the most of the sun when I can get some; a bit of sunbathing on the roof is quite fun and relaxing. My brithday's coming up, I'll be 24 and I'm heading down to Windsor racecourse for the day to gamble my money away with a group of friends. I'll try and get in the background shots of any filming like those goons you usually see who pretend to be minding their own business but are clearly trying to edge in on TV!, so if you're trading watch out for me!

Friday, 19 June 2009

Ascot (continued)

For the second day of Ascot I had similar success to the first day - although I took a big loss on the last race. I was in position and some punter who clearly wanted to back the favourite went against me, and lost me money!; sounds like Alan Sugar. Anyway the day was a result to be pleased with. Yesterday I struggled, I just wasn't 'up' for the days trading and I wasn't awake in my head. I played squash late in the evening and it showed - I just couldn't keep track of the scoreline, and every shot I kept playing was rubbish! I managed to finish up £1200, which by my standards was pretty poor; especially considering the higher liquidity at Ascot.
Normally what I've been doing lately is if I finished under £1000 for the afternoon trading session, and I haven't any plans for the evening, I'll trade the evening races to make it feel like I've put in a good effort for the day.

I'm really considering taking one day off in the week to pursue whatever I feel like doing. It should open up my career path, because at the moment my trading on Betfair feels like something I do just to make money, not something that I can be really enthused about. I'm thinking about starting a personal development blog/website initially for myself, but to share what I've learnt with others. I'll be sure to post up the link for anyone that might be interested in it - I think I'll start it next week.

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

1st day of Ascot

Royal Ascot has started and I was very much looking forward to it. The big meetings bring higher liquidity, which, if you can learn to master those kinds of markets, can be worthwhile for your wallet! I did have a good day today. But they just didn't feel as good as Cheltenham was earlier in the year. Well, it was only the first day with 4 more to go! I've attached my P&L, what's funny about it is the start I had compared to the rest of the day. I've found that I can usually have a good day if my first result was a loss because it bumps me into action to say, 'come on Adam, get in the zone'.

I pulled a nice result out of the bag in the 15:45, mostly down to there being a drift on the horse in the final couple of minutes. Thankfully it stayed slightly cloudy yesterday so my room wouldn't heat up past my level of comfort. The forecast is cloudy over the next few days too, which I am very thankful for over the festival. I had my air conditioning unit on a couple of days ago. I started off with it in the room adjacent to my office, hoping it would cool that room enough so as to suck the heat out of this one!.. That didn't work so I put it in my office, a small 1.9m x 3.3m room. The noise was very loud. I don't think many people would be able to cope trading with what I had going on at one point - the air con, my music and the TV commentary; all within a metre of me! Pretty funny stuff.

Tuesday, 16 June 2009

Blag a million

Slightly off topic, but it's a challenge, similar to mine! - blag a million at www.blagamillion.com are these 2 guys, one of which is my friend, who are attempting to blag a million pounds in 3 months by doing everything and anything they can think of! It's going to be crazy. They are filming the whole thing; you can keep track of their progress by visiting their website once it's fully up and running starting on the 21st June. There's a big chance that it will take off and become big news within the 3 months so keep your eye out and join in wherever possible.

I will be taking part. I am offering/donating a day's trading towards their total! Hopefully just over a grand, or whatever total I can pull in on the day they film me will be a good start.

Hopefully I just don't have a losing day! You can join the facebook group here.

Tuesday, 9 June 2009

Taking time off

I've been working quite intermittently lately, and busy with plenty of things - such as buying a car. I have been trading, and of course I am carrying on with the blog - no doubt about that! I know it's been just over a week since my last post - someone just asked me if I'm stopping my blog! I really enjoy writing this blog and can't imagine discontinuing with it. I did trade on Derby day, although I was slightly hungover - so I just traded on the Epsom races alone; the other races seemed fairly poor in terms of liquidity. My confidence is back up again now - when my confidence is low, I can see the mistakes I make whilst trading; it's just so hard to change your trading style in an instant.

Taking time off
Regarding the post title, there are advantages to working non-stop. I remember when I started I wouldn't take a day off, I worked on every race I could - little did I know that that's exactly what you need to do to give yourself the best chance to get good at trading. It's the same anywhere else. Successful individuals work extremely hard at their chosen profession to work their way up, and when they have raised their game, they have the freedom to take time off, knowing that they have already put the hard work in. I find that if I trade too many consecutive days, my performance drops. So what I do now is take the time off when I feel I need the time off; allowing me to maintain a high level of concentration throughout a trading session without exhaustion. It's good to recharge the batteries! I've had quite a few days off though, that once I'm more settled and have less distractions, I will feel ready to trade 2 weeks non-stop!

This month so far I'm currently averaging just above my average per day from last month. I want to work hard the remainder of this month as I feel guilty for spending a large chunk on a car. Actually, it brings back memories of a motivation I had to make money trading. I have never had any problem spending money, and I used to spend my winnings easily - the motivation being if I didn't make any money the following few days, I would have no money at all! (I was strict about not withdrawing past a set amount in my account I was happy trading with).

Monday, 1 June 2009


The pressure was really on for me in May. I had done so well in March and April, at the start of May I felt it was inevitable that I wouldn't do as well. I think that was my downfall, that mindset is not that of a winning one. Nevertheless, I still averaged £1,707 a day for the 18 full days I traded, consisting of 2 Monday's, 4 Tuesday's, 4 Wednesday's, 3 Thursday's, 4 Friday's and 1 Saturday; that's a respectable profit of £31,766.84 for the month. On the Friday just gone I let the heat get to me and I only just managed to keep the day profitable with £25!. my worst day for a while; maintaining my run of 79 consecutive profitable days. After writing this post I'm heading out to the shops to by a fan. Last year I did buy an expensive air conditioning unit, but it was so noisy, I never used it.

I averaged £76.54 per race over 415 horse races. That's nearly £30 less per race than last month. I put this down to there being no 3/4 day festival like Cheltenham or Aintree (the liquidity was very high at these two meetings on almost every race), as I nailed them this year! My confidence in March and April was very high, so May, I have to be honest, wasn't as high. My biggest challenge this summer is going to be keeping cool (literally), as the heat can really affect my decision making; living in a top flat where the heat rises to, and having my office facing the sun during trading hours doesn't help! I only traded 18 days this month; if the weather stays like this, I will probably be spending more time outside rather than inside. A slightly different approach than the other top traders out there.