Trading the Odds

A statistical approach to profit in the US equity markets, trading the markets like professional card counters are playing Blackjack or expert poker players are playing Poker.

Trading the Odds on Wednesday – March 25, 2009

My name is Frank, and due to the fact that this is my 2nd post after I’ve started the blog on Tuesday, March 24, 2009, a few introductory notes.

I have traded as an individual investor for more than 20 years now. I take a statistical approach in combination with historical market data to profit in the US equity and future markets, focused on intraday and swing trading opportunities (regularly using E-mini futures for intraday trading, and -leveraged- US equity index ETFs for swing trading) .

Please accept my apologies for not being a native speaker, and please take respect to the fact that that blog is (and will probably be for the time being) under construction (there is always room for improvement, especially right after the start, and especially focused to get the tables more self-explanatory; your suggestions -e.g. for different figures and/ore setups- are always more than welcome).

My email:



The S&P 500 almost perfectly followed Tuesday’s bottom line which took into account the seasonality on Tuesdays, an RSI(2) reading between 70 and 90 the previous (Monday’s) session and the expected temporary intraday follow-through on Monday’s gains (survey with S&P 500 up 5%+):

The S&P 500 opened lower, gained some intraday strength, traded through Monday’s close (from below to above) and posted a higher high (than Monday’s high) as well, before the market lost all of its gains and closed lower.


  1. With respect to the weekday seasonality concerning Wednesdays and the current S&P 500 RSI(2) reading of 57.20, there is no (significant) statistical evident edge above or below the respective at-any-time probability and odds concerning the open, any higher high/lower low, the close and/or profit factor.
  2. Tuesday’s pattern of the S&P 500 posting a higher high, a higher low, but closing lower shows a notable intraday edge for Wednesday’s session in the event the S&P 500 opens lower (an above-average probability of intraday strength, limited downside potential and a potential higher close as well, see below).

The probabilities based on the weekday seasonality, the BASIC STRATEGY (S&P 500 2-day RSI) and the Survey (see below) favor a lower open on Wednesday (approximately 66%).


The S&P 500 2-day Relative Strength Index RSI(2) closed at 57.20 on Tuesday, March 24, 2009.

Based on historical data since 01/03/2007, and with a 2-day RSI between 30 and 70 the previous session, all probabilities for a higher/lower open, magnitude of change, a higher high/lower low and the respective profit factor are more or less comparable to at-any-time probabilities and odds, so there is no statistical evidence of any trading edge on Wednesday concerning the RSI(2) strategy.

From my perspective a remarkable pattern on Tuesday’s session was that fact that the S&P 500 posted a higher high and higher low (than the previous session), but closed lower. I checked all occurrences since 03/01/2007 when the S&P 500 posted a higher high and higher low, but closed lower on the day (see table below, “w/Survey” on the bottom of the table, background color yellow) concerning the S&P 500′ behavior the next session. It is notable that

  • concerning those 26 out of 44 occurrences when the S&P 500 opened lower the next session, the probability that the index will close lower as well are significantly below the respective at-any-time probabilities (only 12 out of 26 occurrences), and
  • in the event the S&P 500 opens lower, the probability that the index will at least sometimes during the session exceed the lass sessions close (intraday strength) is above the respective at-any-time probability, and
  • in the event the S&P 500 opens lower, the average intraday loss between close and open is lower than the respective average at-any-time loss, and the profit factor below the at-any-time respective profit factor (if one would have shorted the open).

To make a long story short: This pattern points to a notably higher than the respective at-any-time probability that in the event the S&P 500 opens lower on Wednesday, the index may not only gain some intraday strength, but more often finally closes up than down on that day, and any downside potential may be limited.


(click on image to enlarge)


The table below shows the S&P 500′ historical probabilities and odds for a higher and lower open, a higher high and lower low (than the last sessions high/low) and a higher or lower close with respect to the days of the week (since 01/03/2007).

Since 01/03/2007 regarding Wednesdays there is no (significant) statistical evident edge above or below the respective at-any-time probabilites and odds concerning the open, any higher high/lower low, the close and/or profit factor.


(click on image to enlarge)

Successful trading

Filed under: Basic Strategy, Daily Update, Weekday Seasonality, , , , , ,

2 Responses

  1. Jimmy says:

    Hi Frank,

    Thanks for sharing your wealth of knowledge in U.S. equity trading in this blog, I look forward to reading it daily.

    Another note, are you the same “Frank” who frequently commented at in past months?

    Regards, Jimmy

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March 2009
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