Small-time Options Update: Continued Learning

Eeek! Where does the time go?!? It’s been another extremely dry spell for me in updating this blog. I’ve just been pulled into so many different directions it’s hard to keep up with this thing. However, I do have some updates for my loyal fan base, whoever that may be.

While I haven’t been good about keeping up with this blog, I have been keeping up with working on my trading skills. It is still a little difficult doing this in a hobby, very part-time capacity. However, I’ve managed to tap into some really excellent sources of knowledge and advice that have taught me a ton over the past couple months.

As I mentioned in my last post, I was just in the process of signing on to @stevenplace’s premium service through StockTwits. Steve Place originally had his own blog, Investing With Options, which he still operates and updates regularly. It’s just that now it’s part of the StockTwits premium network of professional traders offering extra juicy details and insights on their trading styles. There is a monthly fee associated with his service, but it’s been worth it for me. The trades put in over the past couple months have easily covered a year’s worth of the fees, and that was mostly during the tail-end of the blasé summer months. Things seem to be turning up in prospects and conviction by Steve, and I believe that’s going to continue to grow. He is putting trades into $7500 and $40,000 portfolios for performance tracking purposes, so you can choose which one you want to operate in. He’s also planning on adding an IRA portfolio version for those playing a bit more long-term.

Another part of Steve’s work that I really get a lot out of is that he’s now hosting the StockTwits Saturday Brunch sessions. Previously, these were put on by @tickerville, and were also quite excellent. Steve just puts much more of an options-based perspective on things (duh!) that is more up my alley (again, duh!). However, he does both a macro/sector overview and individual stock chart reviews that are good for anyone looking to learn, regardless of their preferred trading vehicle. You certainly don’t need to know anything about options in order to get a least something out of the Brunch sessions. Those are also put on for free as part of StockTwits network. You can get to the recordings either on StockTwits.tv, through the StockTwits Desktop or Steve also posts the links on his blog later in the day.

The other hidden gem I’ve been getting a lot out of lately, is by following the trades of @stockguy22, aka “Frank.” To be honest, I’m almost a little hesitant to reveal too much about this guy, because I don’t want him to get so deluged with followers and question askers, that I don’t get as much out of him as fast as I want to. But, I know that’s extremely selfish, and it would certainly goes against the ethos that Frank has set for himself and what he would like to see from those learning from his information. So, here is my synopsis…

Frank is an absolutely amazing trader, teacher and generous individual. He’s totally open about all of his trades, showing daily profits and losses, including screenshots of his broker’s interface indicating how much he made or lost each day. The trick is he has an enormous bankroll for trading compared to the vast majority of people following and trying to learn from him. You can’t get hung up on his numbers. Let’s face it, most of us aren’t going to average daily profits in the $8000 to $10,000 range, or have average positions sizes of $50,000. Personally, I’m trying to set a goal of accomplishing 5-10% of what Frank can do.

I haven’t followed Frank him in on a lot of trades yet. Part of the reason is that a lot of them are intraday (day trades), and my account currently can only do up to 3 intraday trades in a 5 day period. If I go over that, I’m forced to hold a trade overnight, which could be dangerous. I hope to have that resolved soon by moving around some funds to get my account equity over the day trade restriction threshold.

That’s not to say that Frank plays Russian roulette with his trades. In fact, he does quite the opposite. As pointed out in this more-detailed review of stockguy22, Frank’s primary trading philosophy is to react to what the market is doing, not try to predict what it’s going to do. That just means in many cases, the reaction occurs during intraday, then get out of the stock and go to cash to see what tomorrow brings. But, there are still swing trade opportunities and their other followers that point out different, viable trades that Frank doesn’t do. Quite a few of Franks’ followers make a good bit of money every day. Very impressive stuff.

For those looking for more info, I’d suggest you start with downloading the recorded sessions of Frank answering trading questions. In those, he gives an amazing account on some of his background, lays out an excellent set of basics on trading, money management, charting, etc. After those, you’ll be much more primed to follow Frank a bit more closely, and get into a more intermediate understanding of his trading strategies. The rest of his Web site is currently under works, with @KoSoVaR heading up that effort. I’m looking to jump in and help out in getting a small portion of the information in Frank’s head out where the rest of the world can see it. Hopefully, soon!

Okay, that’s where I’m currently at. Any of the rest of you have any good sources of information, or have other similar experiences. Feel free to share them on here. Happy trading!

  • Nice post! Thanks for linking Frank's twitter acct and audio recordings. It'll surely help me with my trading. I'm currently paper trading options because i don't have the equity yet to begin. And i'm still learning the basics. looking forward to more of your posts, keep it simple so i can learn more lol haha good job!

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