This morning saw demand for USD rapidly pick up steam as US inflation data came in hotter than expected. Month-over-month CPI had been forecast to rise by 0.7% in May; at 8:30 am Eastern Time, the Bureau of Labor Statistics revealed that it had increased by 1%, or 8.6% year-over-year, a forty-year high. Likewise, Core CPI (which excludes food and energy prices) was forecast to rise by 0.5% month-over-month, instead hitting 0.6%. On this news, the DXY is up 0.8% and has risen over the 104 level intraday, as EURUSD is down 1% and the S&P 500 is down nearly 3%. With this context in mind, let’s discuss 3 ways to capitalize on inflation now.
Trade Major Pairs
This CPI news is a huge fundamental catalyst for USD pairs since it verifies that the US economy is indeed still overheating, validating further interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve. This is very bullish for USD, which makes buying the USD against other currencies even more appealing. If traders are searching for optimal USD pairs to take positions in, a good place to start is by locating pairs where analysis leans in USD’s favor to the greatest degree possible.
Some such options include a) shorting GBPUSD and EURUSD, which receive -7 (‘strong sell’) and -5 (‘sell’) signals, respectively, from the EdgeFinder, and b) going long on USDJPY, which receives a 4 (‘buy’) EdgeFinder signal. Because USD experienced so much buying pressure this morning, conservative traders may want to find an opportune point of entry by conducting technical analysis, e.g., waiting for a pullback and retest of key support/resistance.
Though admittedly a controversial opinion, I am waiting for an optimal point of entry to purchase gold against USD. XAUUSD experienced quite the selloff this morning before a startling recovery, jumping from a low of 1825 to hovering around 1855 at the time of writing this. This jump was seemingly prompted by finding support around the 1830 level, a clear zone of support on a 1-hour timeframe.
I interpret fundamentals being bullish for XAUUSD due to demand for the precious metal in several different industries and its historical status as a safe haven investment in times of economic crisis. There have been periods where gold’s rise in value does not correlate with USD depreciating in value, which is helpful to consider in cases like these. According to the latest COT data, institutional traders are similarly long on both USD (76%) and gold (73.56%). I am planning to purchase XAUUSD if price action retests the trendline depicted on the 1-day timeframe above, though this opportunity may not come if demand continues to grow quickly.
Invest in the Stock Market
Though it may seem strange in the face of persisting hyperinflation and potential for recession, economic downturns and stock selloffs do present myriad buying opportunities for long-term investors. If you are not planning on retiring for decades, you can utilize dips in the stock market and indices to build wealth over time, assuming you are willing to sacrifice immediate results. For example, when the Dow plummets over 600 points like it has today, investors can seize these events as opportunities for cheap purchases that will yield returns years down the road.
If your investment portfolio keeps crashing in the meantime, this does not have to be discouraging since they are merely unrealized losses; they will likely grow in value through the decades if you are invested in index ETFs and other trustworthy funds. Any further selloffs present even more opportunities for regular, small purchases. (However, investing in individual stocks is a completely different story, and I personally believe that even the most skilled retail investors are not sufficiently equipped to handle the inherent risks involved.)
Price action for USD pairs was fascinating today as the DXY reflected bearish momentum that saw a low of nearly 102.15 intraday. This selloff was stopped at approximately 8:30 a.m. Eastern Time when eager buyers sent it soaring, eventually over the 103.3 level. Several factors were at play here, including important European Central Bank news and expectations for new US CPI data tomorrow. I took this opportunity to trade USDCHF this morning; it went well, and I entered and exited the trade in under an hour. Below I explore my process, and why I day traded USDCHF.
In many ways, the fundamentals favor CHF: Q1 GDP growth in Switzerland was positive unlike for the US, unemployment is 1.5% lower than in the US, and year-over-year inflation is gradually climbing. However, the Swiss National Bank currently has its key interest rate at -0.75%, compared to the Federal Reserve’s 1%, which involved a 50 basis point rate hike. On top of this, both CHF and USD are historically safe haven assets, and USD has encountered recent bearish data and increased chances at volatility due to upcoming US CPI data (perhaps indirectly through today’s ECB announcements as well). Thus, I decided I felt comfortable enough to go long on USDCHF as a day trade, but not confident enough to sit in it for too long.
I felt that there were enough technical indications here to warrant a brief long position. On the 1-hour timeframe, the price moved rapidly outside the Keltner Channel walls, and met significant support in two places: the 0.972 zone and the trendline pictured. I interpreted this bearish candlestick as a hasty reaction to meeting resistance around 0.98 (a reaction that could be short lived in light of potential for USD volatility). Thus, I entered at the 0.973 level, and took profit just above the 0.978 level, since I was not confident it could break through 0.98 resistance.
Sentiment analysis also made me feel comfortable entering the position. According to A1 Trading’s EdgeFinder, recent COT data reveals 76% of institutional traders going long on USD, whereas just over 10% are going long on CHF. In contrast, less than 1/3 of retail traders are long on this pair. These are all incredibly bullish signs for USDCHF, making me feel confident in my purchase, especially as Switzerland grapples with neighboring eurozone issues and with today’s arguably banal ECB decision. However, given my aforementioned uncertainties about the pair’s fundamentals and mutual safe haven status, I still planned on an early exit.
One of the things that makes retail trading unique as a pastime, or even a career, is the degree of honesty and self-reflection it requires. There are many jobs that offer some consistent semblance of leeway when it comes to making mistakes and honing a skill set, but trading is not one of them. No trader can negotiate a raise with the markets or hope for the markets to recognize their hard work; if anyone is not careful with their expectations and risk management, even just one losing trade can be catastrophic. Hence, why truthfulness matters in the world of retail trading: it often spells the difference between passive income and financial ruin. With that in mind, let’s explore 3 lies traders should avoid today.
“My strategy doesn’t need stop losses”
Regardless of a trader’s win rate, every trustworthy strategy incorporates stop losses to some meaningful degree. This is because it is as near certain as statistically possible that unmitigated risk in trading will eventually have terrible consequences. Even if a strategy somehow achieved a win rate over 95% with consistent incremental gains, unchecked risk would still be present in every trade, resulting in a handful of losses that could easily erase all prior profits in a fraction of the time (I know this from personal experience). Stop losses, especially trailing ones, are thus an indispensable tool for traders when it comes to safeguarding against inevitable losses and making their wins count in the long run.
“I will compound my account so fast”
Building a large trading account is a long, gradual process that requires plenty of discipline and patience. Because of this, if a retail trader approaches entering and exiting positions through the lens of a get-rich-quick scheme, they are bound to become disappointed and discouraged, and likely lose money along the way due to over-leveraging and impulsive trading. Thus, it is important for traders to generate realistic expectations for themselves, and not take success for granted. Some ways to practice this include a) thoroughly backtesting any strategies of choice, b) avoiding trading out of financial desperation, and c) recognizing that your value as a person has nothing to do with your account’s performance.
“Fundamentals don’t really matter”
Technical analysis is a wonderful tool for every trader to have equipped, and there are myriad technical indicators worth exploring and adding to any strategy. Likewise, sentiment analysis is valuable as well, since anticipating buying and selling pressure is at the heart of trading as a discipline. However, even with these two crucial forms of analysis at our disposal, it must never be taken for granted that traders are buying and selling real securities.
In a new age of gamification and excessive speculation fueling price action volatility in the markets, it can become easy to believe, even subconsciously, that trading is reducible to a worldwide chart-reading game. Therefore, it’s possible for many traders to miss out on significant fundamental catalysts and opportune points of entry and exit, because it is easy to forget that we are trading in real markets that are shaped by concrete circumstances and events in our world. Thus, whether a trader is buying or selling stocks, currency pairs, or bonds, it is always wise to conduct fundamental analysis, whether that be monitoring macroeconomic data, business fundamentals, or other variables.
Setting goals for yourself when it comes to your performance in the financial markets might not be as straightforward and simple as you may imagine.
It's essential to set a goal whenever you're working towards something in life, otherwise how will you ever know if you've achieved it? Goals can be motivating and are often really helpful in keeping you on the right track to achieving success.
However, it's just as important to spend time ensuring the goals are meaningful rather than purely inspirational and spur of the moment thoughts. Things that are actually going to help you reach a desired outcome and monitor your progress towards achieving it.
For example, when you set goals for your trading/investing progress, have you ever relied on statements along the lines of "I want to become more profitable" or "I want to open more great trades?".
I have to hold my hands up to that one, I've used goals like that in the past - most traders have! Unfortunately, these sort of blanket statements just fall into the category of 'easier said than done'.
We need to get more specific. We all set these blank goals in life. We set ourselves these vague goals often. Saying I want to be a profitable trader is just like saying I want to be able to run a marathon or I want to get all A’s in university.
To be able to truly achieve your trading and personal goals you need to get specific and consistent with your goal setting.
Each of us has different strengths, weaknesses, and past experiences that affect our trading. Some may be highly risky traders as they have not yet encountered a reality check by Mr. Market others may be risk averse. We all have different areas we need to work on in our trading approach if we want to progress and succeed in the markets to become profitable traders.
By using a blank statements about our overall trading, we're not really going to be measuring progress in the areas that really matter to us individually.
Rather than setting goals and measuring our success based on improvements only in our P&L, we should be identifying points that are holding us back and find an appropriate measure that shows progress in that specific area.
Many traders need to focus on their risk management (which I believe is the key to a long career in the markets) setting specific goals such as no more than 2% per trade or after 3 losing trades walking away from the screens. Stopping to trade when you feel that you will over trade or start revenge trading. If this is something you struggle with get some help! Invest in your education here with A1 Trading
Other traders may need to focus on not jumping the gun! Not entering into trades too fast, not checking macro-economic data or not looking at the economic calendar to see if there is high volatility news due, as we all know trading before major news releases is very risky.
By doing that, it will help us to focus our development plan in a way that's meaningful and encourage trading in a way that's more sustainable. Things that avoid us being tempted into risky approaches in an attempt to hit profit targets, without any improvements actually being made to our ability.
What's your ratio ?
To help put this in to practical terms, there's a quote from the book 'Good to Great' by Jim Collins that has always resonated with me. It's intended to apply to business, but I think it can also be adapted to apply to trading or any other area of your life you're hoping to improve.
"If you could pick one & only one ratio - profit per _____ - to systematically increase over time, what _____ would have the greatest and most sustainable impact on your economic engine?"
That's definitely something to really focus when making realistic goals regarding your trading. The word 'sustainable' is key here - we don't want to hit a profit target for the sake of it, but instead we want to see an improvement in our approach to the financial markets in a steady & sustainable way. Improvements that lead to dependable and repeatable returns in the market, not a one-hit wonder.
Have a think about you ratios as a trader - what would your ratio be that you want to improve? What would show that your performance as a trader / Investor is moving in the correct direction?
If you're an A1 member, let's discuss and share our specific trading goals in the discord server
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