In the January 29, 2001, edition of the "Daily" you present 19 different stocks for consideration for January 30. I am a subscriber to e-signal and wonder if you would shed some light on how to best keep watch on these stocks. Do you set alarms, and if so, are they at a price point or % changes? Do you create a new quotes screen each night for the following days' selected stocks? I find if I have more than four charts up at one time, it's too difficult to follow well. I would appreciate any tips as surely as I'm watching one, I'm missing another. (January 30, 2001)
First, the Daily was larger than we like, but there were many good-looking plays out there. The Tech Traders Report and the Stock Split Report cover a lot more plays, and keeping track can be overwhelming. But that is one of the dilemmas of an improving market. We focus on our 'best plays,' but we know that any of these good-looking stocks could break out.
That is where a good realtime service or brokerage service comes in handy. When we are on the go, we know what stocks we are interested in and where we are interested in them. We carry a cheat sheet with the basics in the event we cannot keep it all in our heads. Then we use eSignal to carry the load for us. We really like using alarms and the new 6.0 version is very good for setting alarms when a stock hits the price you want. Mostly we use the alarms on a price basis as we know ahead of time where we want the stock to be. If it is a pullback to support, we set the alarm a bit above the support level so we get an alert before it hits that level. If it is a breakout over a specific resistance, we set the alarm just ahead of that resistance so we can pull up the chart and see how it looks. We can do this at the computer or with the handheld when on the go. Very handy, and this way we can monitor many plays without our heads spinning. It requires some input ahead of time, but it vastly reduces the strain. Moreover, you can set the alert for volumes, but we also just make a note on the alarm as to what we want volume to be so when it pops up we don't have to go digging for the details. Keep it simple. Technology is supposed to help us do that.
We create quote screens for the plays, but we do so in more of a continuing fashion. We have stocks that we always monitor just to see how the sectors are performing, but the top of our main quote window is devoted to plays that we are looking to get in on. These include plays from the previous night's reports as well as holdover plays we are still waiting on making a move such as stock split pre-announcements, pre-splits, breakouts and the like. They don't always pop off the next day, but we still want to get in on them if the move is good.
As for charts, we keep a couple running, but as they are easy to call up and can be done in an instant, we are not big on seeing a bunch. We have the Dow, S&P 500, Nasdaq, Nasdaq 100 at the top of our quote window, so we always know where they are. Then we keep the Nasdaq on one chart and have the other one to jump to various charts that we get an alert on or whether we want to monitor what is happening on other plays. In addition we have Nasdaq Level II running if we want to see the buy and sell pressure, and we keep time and sales running for the same reason. This keeps things simple and uncluttered, and it helps us retain focus. We are not getting overwhelmed by a number of charts and data; we let the machine do the filtering for us by using alerts and keeping track of the market overall.
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