Reviewing My 2011 Resolutions
Last year I came up with a list of resolutions that would be meaningless if I didn't review them in the new year and see how I did keeping to them. There were some definite hits and misses, so lets review:
1. Do a better job of keeping winners from turning into losers.
I would say I did a much better job in the second half of the year than I did in the first half - which leaves me optimistic going into 2012. This is one of the hardest aspects of trading, but I do feel like I did a good job with extracting a good chunk of winners out of the market that would have otherwise been losers .
2. Exercise more!
I did horrible on this resolution - largely because 2011 involved a lot of new development and long hours that kept me from hitting the gym. In fact I did worse in this category in 2011 than I did in 2010 - Yikes!
3. Practice more precision on my entries into trades.
My entries in options leave a lot to be desired, and my tinkering in them in 2011 was probably not the best thing for me. I did great using Adam's Options Income Newsletter on the sell-side but on the buy side (going off of my own ideas) the results were yucky, usually getting in far too early on most trades.
On the equity front, I think I did a stellar job of timing my entries. They were precise, and typically well executed, except for a few instances of trading high-flier stocks using stop orders.
Grade: A for Equities; C for Options.
4. Avoid stocks that have a less than desirable setup, simply because of its "high-Flyer" status.
I traded a number of these stocks with reasonable success, outside of buying some NFLX calls at $123 and selling at $117 for a decent loss. I held Apple through earnings during the first quarter with some success as well, but while I might have had some success here, I would say that I was chasing the name of the stock in many cases, so I can't say with much confidence that I did good at succeeding in this resolution. But overall, I did a much better job of not chasing high-fliers than I did in 2010 or any previous year.
5. Avoid hedging due to market uncertainty, particularly with ETF's (SPY, QQQQ, etc.).
A definite area that I excelled at, whereby instead of just hedging when I didn't like the market uncertainty, I simply closed out positions to neutralize my exposure to the market.
Here are the 5 remaining resolutions.