On the Sidelines

Chris Selland is a Boston-based technology industry analyst & startup executive.  Currently, he is an Expert Advisor for Focus Research and blogs at terametric.com.

Someone asked me the other day why I don’t tweet as much about trading anymore. The reason is simple – I haven’t been trading. I’ve essentially been out of the market since April. I’ve stuck my toe in the water a few times this year, each time with tight stops, and each time was right back on the sidelines within a few weeks if not days.

I still follow along with and participate in discussions on StockTwits, and am thrilled to see that community continue to grow and get the recognition it deserves.

But I just can’t get excited about this market. There’s certainly plenty of activity and action, but I don’t see any conviction. There are no underlying trends or fundamentals that will cause any sustainable trends – 2011’s market has done little more than oscillate wildly based on whatever politician makes whatever announcement from Washington, Brussels, Athens, etc….

Up today, down tomorrow, and round-and-round it goes.

That’s a great market for the pros – I have no doubt my friends @upsidetrader, @jfahmy and @reformedbroker are killing it – but for mere mortals like me it’s best to stay on the sidelines. I just don’t have the time to be in the market all day, every day – and if I can’t do that right now, it makes no sense to try to trade it.

Josh wrote a post the other day that sums the situation up perfectly – clearly I’m not the only retail investor who feels this way. Until I see some conviction, and some reason to believe, I’m out.

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