"Get yourself a mentor." Of all the advice that professional traders give aspiring traders, that suggestion must be the most daunting piece of wisdom to translate into action. After all, not unlike an aspiring artist from the small country town who finally saves up enough to move to the big city, apprentice traders often find it difficult to cultivate relationships with traders successful and talented enough to serve as trading mentors.
The Internet has helped many would-be traders bridge the gaps between aspirant and professional, and the bridging of the "mentor gap" through trader-sponsored websites such as Teresa Lo's trendVue is playing a large part in this revolution in trading education. Lo, who says she received an invaluable education working in a brokerage office and "watching clients blow themselves up," notes that as important as it is for novice traders to find a mentor, it is equally important to make sure anyone who provides trading advice is qualified to give it. "Our voice/text chat sessions are in real-time," she says, "so you can see exactly what we are talking about as it happens." In addition, trendVue keeps its regular newsletters archived on the website for reference. If you want to know if (and how) trendVue got long after the lows of September 2001, for example, Lo and her partners have their entire thought processes (and successful trades) documented.
The website's newsletter and the voice/text chat sessions are just a part of what trendVue offers its subscribers. TrendVue provides a variety of ways for aspiring traders to move up the learning curve toward professional competence and confidence. From its free mailing list to its $300-a-month trendVue Pro membership package, trendVue helps provide both newbie traders and intermediate-level traders looking for a bit of "continuing education" with all the tools and methodology necessary to travel down what trendVue calls the "road to profits."
As a website and free mailing list, trendVue offers both a market commentary - an online briefing on recent market activity that is distributed at least three times a week - and an introductory text to trading, the online book Road To Profits. The market commentary is e-mailed to subscribers and is part of the 20/20 Insight newsletter, a more complete coverage of the markets and trendVue's ideas on possible trading opportunities. The market commentary includes observations about recent price movements in major averages such as the Nasdaq, as well as major indexes such as the Philadelphia semiconductor index (SOX).
While more nuanced trading ideas are available only through the complete version of 20/20 Insight, the market commentary provides a good idea of how Lo and her partners at trendVue see the markets, and it's an excellent way to get accustomed to the day-to-day business of trading the markets, as well as trendVue's particular techniques.
FIGURE 1: Membership. The various trendVUE membership packages range from the free mailing list to the pro package for more committed traders.
But before you jump to subscribe to either of trendVue's packages, Lo strongly encourages those who are interested to get to know both trendVue's approach to participating in the markets as well as some general but vital information on the nature of the stock markets themselves. Implicit is the understanding that would-be traders who are aware of what they are getting into tend to make better-informed decisions about whether they wish to be active traders. Becoming better informed about what trading is and is not also is helpful in providing people with the foundation that will make them better traders in the future.
Toward this end, Road To Profits is one of the more useful parts of trendVue, particularly for those considering a subscription. Part introduction to trading and part introduction to market philosophy and psychology, Road To Profits helps prospective traders put their dreams of quick riches in context with the hard work and discipline required to succeed. While much of Road To Profits is geared toward the specific tools and strategies that trendVue uses (that is, proprietary swing charts and preferred indicators such as the average directional index [ADX] and exponential moving averages), the text is nonetheless useful for those looking to participate in the markets, whether as a day, swing, or position trader.
TRENDVUE PRO AND PLUS
For those who take the plunge and subscribe to one of trendVue's packages, the options range from a Plus subscription that includes a Saturday Summit, which is a talk/chat session with Teresa Lo and her website partners, proprietary swing charting software compatible for both the PC and the Apple Macintosh, and a membership upgrade on trendVue's chatroom at Silicon Investor's StockTalk. This is in addition to a complete version of the 20/20 Insight newsletter, which includes more nuanced trading tips on the indexes and averages that trendVue covers. The Pro version, which costs considerably more than the Plus, offers all the features of the Plus but includes a technical trader's handbook and access to the Live! Forum with Lo and website partner Victoria Pearson.
FIGURE 2: The basics. These proprietary swing charts are the foundation of trendVue's technical approach to trading the markets.
A closer look at the two packages helps traders distinguish just what they might be able to get out of trendVue. The Plus package is mostly for those traders and investors simply looking to take a more active role in their financial future. The emphasis here is on what Lo calls "long-term stock market survival" and less on the sort of technical trading "setups" that more experienced, professional traders find in the Pro package. The Plus package includes the trendVue swing chart software, the 20/20 Insight newsletter, and access to the Saturday Summit, a voice/text chatroom that features a live two-hour seminar with the trendVue traders to help subscribers get a handle on both the week that was and the week that is to come.
GETTING INTO VUE
One of the other special features of trendVue is its Trader's Tips. Available on a limited basis to mailing list subscribers and made available to trendVue Plus and Pro subscribers, Trader's Tips consists of a variety of helpful trading rules, axioms, and discoveries - many of which have come directly from the trendVue Live! Forum or from direct questions that subscribers have posed to the trendVue traders. From studies of specific stocks to order entry techniques to technical indicators, trendVue's Learning Center serves as another contribution to a trader's continuing education.
Next up for trendVue? One big goal for trendVue in 2002 is to finish up a charting interface that combines trendVue's proprietary swing charts with a "super-robust datasignal" such as eSignal - a popular datafeed among trendVue subscribers, according to a website survey. On a similar note, Lo plans to make the trendVue proprietary swing chart indicator available for TradeStation 6 and 2000i users, again partly in response to feedback from subscribers but also, she says, "as a tool for ourselves." Another of trendVue's larger goals, led by website partner Pearson, is a technical trading seminar that would provide aspiring traders with a complete course in trading over a series of weekend sessions. Such a seminar, Lo points out, would be a departure from those weekend trading courses that cost thousands of dollars and often leave students with extremely subjective trading methodologies or barely comprehensible systems.
- David Penn, Staff Writer
For all you candlestick enthusiasts, here's a site that has everything you need to know about candlesticks. Yes, it has charts - candlestick charts powered by Prophet Finance - but wait! There's more.
There's the candle query where you can scan the entire database of stocks by selecting a specific trading day, an indicator, a pattern (continuation or reversal), the trend (bullish or bearish), reliability, price range of stock, and volume range. Once you specify the criteria, a list of stocks that meet your requirements will be displayed. A click on any of the symbols will display the chart and detailed quotes.
Another feature is the daily top 25 lists. Here also you can select the trading day, price range, volume range, and one out of the eight lists, all of which could be very useful. Your choices are: top 25 bullish by reliability, top 25 bullish by volume, top 25 bullish by change, top 25 bullish by percent change, top 25 bearish by reliability, top 25 bearish by volume, top 25 bearish by change, and top 25 bearish by percent change.
A list of the 25 stocks is displayed along with the indicator, pattern, trend, reliability, closing price of the day, and average volume. You have the option of creating a watchlist consisting of 25 stocks you want to monitor. LitWick.com developers also plan to add more indicators, charts, a real-time analysis program, alerts, and a discussion board.
A helpful tool included in this site is the reference section, where various candlestick terms and a complete indicator glossary are included. A diagram representing each pattern accompanies its definition.
Overall, LitWick.com is an informative, helpful site. It's worth visiting and taking advantage of the 30-day free trial. If you decide to subscribe to the premium service, it will cost you $10 per month - not a bad price for the services you will receive.
- Jayanthi Gopalakrishnan, Editor
Originally published in the March 2002 issue of Technical Analysis of STOCKS & COMMODITIES magazine. All rights reserved. © Copyright 2002, Technical Analysis, Inc.
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