Is It Possible To Make Money Swingtrading? My numbers 1st half 2013

Last Updated on October 23, 2022

I have been backtesting swing trading (holding positions 1-5 days) for many years. But because I have done fairly well in day trading, I didn’t really put a lot of effort into swing trading. I never really started. But when my day trading got sour in 2011, I was kind of “forced” to try it out. I did some serious backtesting in 2012 and started 100% in February 2013. So far the result has been more than satisfactory. Cumulative return in the period was 12.78%:

This is so good I don’t expect it to continue…

Here are all my trades in a bar graph in chronological order:

The average gain per trade before commissions is 0.13%.

Going forward I will put more into this account. I trade fairly liquid instruments, so increasing size should not deteriorate it, I hope.

Most of my trading is in ETF’s, and some in stocks. I do a lot of trades, and holding time is short, max 5 days but usually just one day overnight. I did 1043 trades in the first 6 months. I believe in making many trades and keeping positions small instead of using things like stop-loss or profit targets. I record every trade I make to look for patterns. Most of the strategies are from the blog I write. I don’t want to reveal my stock trading strategies, only ETF’s I “reveal”.

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  • Hi
    I am a follower of your blog.
    You said previously that you only trade mean reversion. do you find that MR works better than Trend followers and other strategies? do you trade MR intraday(meaning that you wait for set ups then you enter during the trading session)? or do you do it on close/open?
    you dont trade futures? any reason?
    thank you in advance for your time.

    • Thanks.

      Yes, I only find trend following working in just a few instruments and only for longer periods. I trade on open, close and during the day. I keep myself to trading stocks/ETF, it’s the only source I have for backtesting. Works ok for me.

    • Hi, sorry, didn’t see your post until now. Very hard to tell. In my opinion you need several positions to diversify a little and I guess it’s a tradeoff between that and costs/commissions.

  • […] In July I wrote about my performance. It was good. Very good until the end of July when I opened a corporate account and deposited much more money. And what usually happens happened: after a very good run it’s tempting to increase the size. But the market cycles play some tricks and typically after a good run there is a bad one. That one started exactly at the same day as I started with bigger size. All my strategies turned bad: momentum strategies goes mean reversion, and mean reversion goes trending. Is this a permanent change in the market? Are my strategies finished? Trading leaves a lot of unaswered questions. It’s so easy to backtest, but a lot more difficult in real trading. However, I went through all my backtesting in detail and made an equity curve of all my current strategies. And what has happened in August has happened before. Actually, the longest drawdown period was from may until september 2011. And here I am, worried about a 4-5 week drawdown? Going back into history is a great motivational help. This at least gives me a lot of comfort to continue. It’s so easy to lose sight of the forest because of the trees. I’m used to daytrading and not having long periods of drawdown. […]