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April continued to be dominated by two themes:

  1. None of the strategies I track did much – they’re all pretty much sideways in a market like this.  They have a month up and then a month down.  In terms of MOMO1, this is actually what I would expect – the system performs best in a bull market and despite the rally, we are not yet in a bull market in my view.  It could also be that we are in a very different market – closer to 1930 or 1970 rather than 2000-2008 – so the systems may simply not come back to life for a while.  As such I continue to monitor them and make changes as I see fit.
  2. The little time I have these days is split between my family and my job.

Despite all of this, I’ve been impressed with the rally in the market over the past two months although I have not been as invested as I should have been.

Also exciting this month: Amibroker update that makes doing this reporting much, much easier.  The other really nice feature about the new reporting is that it is customizable – so you can program new charts which is pretty darn neat and something that I used Tradersstudio for.  The individual strategy pages have been changed to reflect the new reporting.

MR1 was the bigger winner in April.  Stats are below.  Disappointing is that all the strategies significantly underperformed the market – I’m not really shocked at this given the huge change in trend during the past month – but it is disappointing nevertheless.

As normal, you’ll find the individual strategies pages (MOMO1, TREND1, MR1) have updated equity curves, statistics and current holdings. As was true of my last update – all the trading systems below assume an Interactive Broker‘s-like commission plan – for these, it is .01 cent per share with a $1 dollar minimum.  None of these system count dividends.

MOMO1:

  • Return for April-09: -0.3%
  • Return YTD: 3.1%
  • Current holdings: IGN, EWT, HHH

TREND1:

  • Return for April-09: -1.9%
  • Return YTD: -1.8% (includes some of May)
  • Current holdings: AGG, IWM

MR1:

  • Return for April-09: 5.1%
  • 2009: -3.9% (includes some of May)
  • Current holdings: See blog for updates.

Benchmarks (from March 31,2009 till April 30,2009):

  • S&P500:
    • April-09: 9.39%
    • 2009: 2.88% (through May 8th)
  • DOW:
    • April-09: 7.35%
    • 2009: -2.30% (through May 8th)
  • Nasdaq:
    • April-09: 12.72%
    • 2009: 15.06% (through May 8th)
  • IWM (proxy for the R2000):
    • March-09: 15.39%
    • 2009: 3.59% (through May 8th)
  • EFA (proxy for developed foreign markets):
    • March-09: 11.52%
    • 2009: 2.43% (through May 8th)
  • EEM (proxy for developing foreign markets):
    • March-09: 15.56%
    • 2009: 26.51% (through May 8th) – Wow!

As always – thanks for reading and I hope you have a good May!

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I figured out a way to do my benchmarks a lot faster – so I’m going to continue to post them after all.  I like keeping an eye on them because you can often lose the forest for the trees if you know what I mean.  Max continues to grow at a great pace and is definitely where I should be placing most of my time – so I’ll be spending time on that!  Ok – onto the system results.

MR1 was the bigger winner in March.  Stats are below.  Disappointing is that all the strategies significantly underperformed the market – I’m not really shocked at this given the huge change in trend during the past month – but it is disappointing nevertheless.

As normal, you’ll find the individual strategies pages (MOMO1, TREND1, MR1) have updated equity curves, statistics and current holdings. As was true of my last update – all the trading systems below assume an Interactive Broker‘s-like commission plan – for these, it is .01 cent per share with a $1 dollar minimum.  None of these system count dividends.

MOMO1:

  • Return for March-09: 0.5%
  • Return YTD: -1.4%
  • Current holdings: IEF,GLD,SLV

TREND1:

  • Return for Feb-09: 1.5%
  • Return YTD: -1.3%
  • Current holdings: IEF, AGG

MR1:

  • Return for Feb-09: 2.3%
  • 2009: -6.0%
  • Current holdings: See blog for updates.

Benchmarks (from Feb 27,2009 till March 31,2009):

  • S&P500:
    • March-09: 8.54%
    • 2009: -11.67%
  • DOW:
    • March-09: 7.73%
    • 2009: -13.30%
  • Nasdaq:
    • March-09: 10.74%
    • 2009: 2.09%
  • IWM (proxy for the R2000):
    • March-09: 7.41%
    • 2009: -14.60%
  • EFA (proxy for developed foreign markets):
    • March-09: 8.39%
    • 2009: -16.21%
  • EEM (proxy for developing foreign markets):
    • March-09: 16.86%
    • 2009: -0.64%

As always – thanks for reading and I hope you have a good April!

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The Skills Dat Pay Da Bills album cover
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The Skills Index is back on sell again.  This is a tough market, no doubt about it.  Short term, though, I wouldn’t be adding to short positions here with RSI2 on the SPY down to around 3, and the percent of stocks in the SP-500 with RSI2 of less than 10 approaching 60% – pretty close to other times where we saw reversals.  So what to here?  Well, I’ll watch the trade during the day for a reversal.  Other than that, for short positions I’d look for a retracement on this move to establish positions, but honestly there really has been no strong trend (except the overall down trend), so I’d limit both long and short positions.  I think if you are trading here, keep it small.

Suffice to say that all the positions established in my prior post from MR1 and MR2 are underwater – I’ve got one new position coming from MR2 – QLD.

skills_index_2_17_09

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winter reflection
Image by Qba from Poland via Flickr

Hey all – I’ve got some new setups from MR1 and my new, still in development MR2 that I wanted to share with folks.

MR1: EWJ, OIL – both buy on the open with a 50% allocation to each.

MR2: DDM, DIG, MVV, RSU, SAA, SSO, URE, UWM, UYG – you’ll need to look at each of these to determine your own position size – I use a custom position sizing on this.

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Not much to say about January except that it sucked.  I didn’t even really realize how bad the month was until I ran the numbers below.  Skills Index is still on sell, and I’ve been testing whether you should take the trade in the index on the breakdown or on the pullback – the answer is not so simple, so I’m exploring a scaling-in methodology – more to come.

MR1 continues to perform the best of the strategies – not surprising given the current market conditions that clearly favor mean-reversion over trend or momentum.

As normal, you’ll find the individual strategies pages (MOMO1, TREND1, MR1) have updated equity curves, statistics and current holdings. As was true of my last update – all the trading systems below assume an Interactive Broker‘s-like commission plan – for these, it is .01 cent per share with a $1 dollar minimum.  None of these system count dividends.

MOMO1:

  • Return for Jan-09: -2.2%
  • 2008: -2.2%
  • Current holdings: TLT,IEF,GDX

TREND1:

  • Return for Jan-09: -1.9%
  • Return YTD: -1.9%
  • Current holdings: IEF, AGG

MR1:

  • Return for Jan-09: 2.6%
  • 2009: 2.6%
  • Current holdings: See blog for updates.

Benchmarks: Benchmarks have been moved to Worden data – so your results may be slightly different.

  • S&P500:
    • Jan-09: -8.57%
    • 2009: -8.57%
  • DOW:
    • Jan-09: -8.84%
    • 2009: -8.84%
  • Nasdaq:
    • Dec-08: -2.59%
    • 2008: -2.59%
  • IWM (proxy for the R2000):
    • Dec-08: -9.67%
    • 2008: -9.67%
  • EFA (proxy for developed foreign markets):
    • Dec-08: -13.73%
    • 2008: -13.73%
  • EEM (proxy for developing foreign markets):
    • Dec-08: -9.29%
    • 2008: -9.29%

As always – thanks for reading and I hope you have a good February.

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Israeli pediatric...

Image by Getty Images via Daylife

Despite my best efforts to kill the patient (aka my accounts), I think he/she/it is still alive – finally, I’ve got some better movement in the systems area.  Nothing that makes me want to run out and throw all my money at them, but hey, it’s a start.

November has finished up with MR1 basically flat, while MOMO1 and TREND1 seem to have finally caught onto to something – namely bonds and gold.  Both of them are in bonds, and MOMO1 has held gold since October and continues to hold it (we’ll find out more next week when we re-rank the ETFs).

Now, as I’ve mentioned over and over – I haven’t been trading these systems in November because the master signal is off.  The master signal (aka Skills Index) flipped to an on position briefly, then off again.  But things change fast in this market, so I’ll note that the Skills Index just flipped back on.  Only problem here is that the market is so obviously overbought I don’t plan on adding to any positions right here.

I’m also waiting for the systems to trade above their 50d moving average in terms of their equity curve as well.  So MOMO1 is about there, TREND1 isn’t, and MR1 slightly above it at this point.

As normal, you’ll find the individual strategies pages (MOMO1, TREND1, MR1) have updated equity curves, statistics and current holdings. As was true of my last update – all the trading systems below assume an Interactive Broker‘s-like commission plan – for these, it is .01 cent per share with a $1 dollar minimum.

MOMO1:

  • Return for Nov-08: 9.3% (does not include dividends)
  • Return YTD: -23.2%
  • Current holdings: SHY, TLT, GLD

TREND1:

  • Return for Nov-08: 3.6% (does not include dividends)
  • Return YTD: -30.1%
  • Current holdings: IEF

MR1:

  • Return for Nov-08: -0.5% (does not include dividends)
  • Return YTD: 5.3%
  • Current holdings: See blog for updates.

Benchmarks: All my benchmarks are from Google Finance – so your results may be slightly different.

  • S&P500:
    • Nov-08: -4.71%
    • YTD: -38.96%
  • DOW:
    • Nov-08: -2.6%
    • YTD: -33.44%
  • Nasdaq:
    • Nov-08: -6.91%
    • YTD: -42.1%
  • IWM (proxy for the R2000):
    • Nov-08: -2.29%
    • YTD: -37.64%
  • EFA (proxy for developed foreign markets):
    • Nov-08: -2.23%
    • YTD: -46.8%
  • EEM (proxy for developing foreign markets):
    • Nov-08: -1.67%
    • YTD: -54.15%

As always – I welcome any questions or comments you might have, and I hope you caught the move up last week!

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NASDAQ MarketSite TV studio

Image via Wikipedia

What a time it has been for the market – obviously most people are struggling at I’ve read that upwards of $2 trillion dollars have been knocked off of 401k accounts.  As I would expect, all of my strategies, as they are outlined, are struggling – some more than others, but overall pretty bad.  However, as I mentioned in my last email, I’m not trading them – basically my strategies are all in the “off position” at the moment.  So I’m trading a little here and there but I have no long term holding at this point and won’t until something changes more radically in the market to trigger my overall system indicators to turn to the “on” position.

But what I did want to do is keep publishing the monthly results.  I hate it when people publish strategies that just “magically” disappear when they start doing badly.  So I’m holding myself to that standard.

Onto the results…again, pretty disappointing.  MR1 did well in September, but this has been followed by an equally disastrous beginning in October – the strategy is down about -11% in October so far, joining MOMO1 and TREND1 in the house of shame.

As I mentioned in my last update, my day job has been taking up more and more of my time (damn that day job) – but I’m working on a piece on utilizing value and momentum stock performance as a way to judge when to be in the market. I’ve been trying to work on a specific technique – having the trading strategy adapt to conditions using methods similar to those outlined by Michael over at MarketSci.  Alas, the programming in Amibroker is a bit beyond my skills and thus I’ll probably publish the first half of it without that technique.

As normal, you’ll find the individual strategies pages (MOMO1, TREND1, MR1) have updated equity curves, statistics and current holdings. As was true of my last update – all the trading systems below assume an Interactive Broker‘s-like commission plan – for these, it is .01 cent per share with a $1 dollar minimum.

MOMO1:

  • Return for Sept-08: -8.7% (does not include dividends)
  • Return YTD: -22.9%
  • Current holdings: SHY, TLT, GLD

TREND1:

  • Return for Sept-08: -11.9% (does not include dividends)
  • Return YTD: -30.7%
  • Current holdings: None – out of the market (all on it’s own!)

MR1:

  • Return for Sept-08: 11.4% (does not include dividends)
  • Return YTD: -4.5%
  • Current holdings: See blog for updates.

Benchmarks: All my benchmarks are from Google Finance – so your results may be slightly different.

  • S&P500:
    • Sept-08: -9.08%
    • YTD: -31.64%
  • DOW:
    • Sept-08: -6.0%
    • YTD: -28.67%
  • Nasdaq:
    • Sept-08: -11.64%
    • YTD: -33.09%
  • IWM (proxy for the R2000):
    • Sept-08: -7.95%
    • YTD: -25.89%
  • EFA (proxy for developed foreign markets):
    • Sept-08: -11.44%
    • YTD: -39.17%
  • EEM (proxy for developing foreign markets):
    • Sept-08: -14.68%
    • YTD: -46.13%

As always – I welcome any questions or comments you might have, and I hope the market isn’t killing you!

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