Spread betting strategies for trading the news

Today we are going to discuss spread betting strategies that can be used ahead of a major news item. Later today the second quarter US GDP numbers come out and we get asked frequently about which spread betting strategies we use ahead of such major news announcements.

The answer is actually quite simple. Since we are technical traders and follow mechanical trading rules we are either already in a trade if we want to be in it, or know where we will get in should our entry criteria be hit. We don’t base our trading decisions on trying to predict the news items, or how the markets will react to the news. We simply follow the trend.

Since our spread betting system is a weekly system, we don’t enter trades immediately before, during or after a news item as we are already in the trades that we want to be in. We don’t therefore enter again until the following Monday, using the closing price on Friday as our entry should the price action in the immediately preceding week trigger a buy or sell signal for us. We therefore use spread betting strategies based on a weekly timeframe and don’t concern ourselves with intraday news.

Trading systems are either predictive or reactive. We don’t get involved in trying to predict, but rather react to price action. We know already where we want to get in and where we want to get out based on the price and chart structure. The rest is irrelevant. Should the market exceed the levels that we have predetermined will be optimum for entry, either for long or short trades, then we will enter. If the market does not exceed those levels then we stay out.

Let’s just look at what is expected today as far as the news is concerned out of interest, although we won’t be basing any of our spread betting strategies on it. Economists are expecting that US GDP growth for the second quarter will come in at 2.5%. I expect that it may disappoint and come in lower than that, possibly closer to 2%. If that does happen then we may see a reaction to the news that moves stocks and currencies considerably.

We have already covered this week that the long term trend is down for stocks and have identified a couple of key resistance levels, which are 1118 and 1129 on the September S&P 500. As long as the market stays below those 2 levels then the short and long term trends will remain down and the odds favour lower prices.

Yesterday we got a close below the important 1100 level at 1097 on the September contract and also below the 200 day moving average, which many traders look at. We also had an evening star pattern form on the S&P 500 earlier in the week which is bearish for the short term so various things point to lower prices to come.

What this really boils down to is that you should have a trading plan in place ahead of any news items or price reactions and know exactly what you are going to do and why. Once you have your plan in place then you stick to spread betting strategies within that plan and trade accordingly.

There are many traders and economists that try to predict news items and how the markets will react to the news item depending on what the numbers are. It’s far better in my opinion to just focus on the most important indicator of all, which is the price itself. Then all you have to do is follow the price and the trend.

Until next time, good trading

Phil Seaton

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Discuss: “Spread betting strategies for trading the news”

  1. August 11, 2010 at 1:06 pm #

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    Posted by Hyon Kreuziger
  2. July 30, 2010 at 12:30 pm #

    Thanks for writing, I very much liked your newest post. I think you should post more frequently, you evidently have natural ability for blogging!

    Posted by joisseleFlerb

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