Five ways to improve your trading during "Silly Season" (Poll)

About a year ago I wrote a blog on the "silly season," as I call it. The silly season starts on December 15 and extends through the first week of January. The silly season has nothing to do with telling jokes and laughing at funny things, but everything to do with trading.

Trading is a serious business. If you want to be successful you have to practice, just like an athlete would. I don't think there is an athlete out there who just woke up and said I'm going to be a world-class athlete and achieved that goal without practicing.

After December 15 most successful traders who made their money during the year are headed to either Florida, Palm Springs, or just taking a break to spend time with family.

What makes the silly season, silly?

It has everything to do with the lack of volume in trading. When you have very little volume it is easy for markets to be, forgive me because I am about to say the M word - manipulated - by just a few traders. You do not want to be ending your year at the mercy of markets that are erratic at best. You may as well just head out to Las Vegas and take a shot at the roulette wheel.

So how can you avoid this trading trap? Here's what I do every year:

After the 15th I close out all of my positions win, lose, or draw, and say thank you very much for another good year. Once I have cleared my trading book I'm free to enjoy the silly season without falling prey to the big M. I let the markets be the markets, because I know they will be there next year and I want to be prepared physically and mentally to take advantage of them.

That being said, here are my five key recommendations for you during silly season:

  1. Enjoy time with your family and friends.
  2. Be appreciative what you have, not what you don't have. There are a lot more folks that have a whole lot less than you than folks who have more.
  3. Give something back. It doesn't matter what it is, or how small, give something back; it will make you feel good.
  4. Enjoy the season. Forget about the markets they will be there next year.
  5. Take some quiet time for yourself to regenerate your spirit.

For me, number 5 means sitting in a quiet room by myself and thinking about all of the different things that have happened in the past year. Doing this keeps me grounded and prepares me for the year ahead. This quiet time helps me put everything into perspective and gets me in the right frame of mind for trading in the New Year. This quiet time restores your inner strength, which is something you need in trading.

So there you have it. That is how I avoid silly season and prepare myself for the new trading year.

How will you be spending this "silly season"?

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I welcome your feedback. Why not share how you get ready for the new trading year.

Here's to a great silly season!

All the Best,

Adam Hewison
President of
Co-Founder of MarketClub

57 thoughts on “Five ways to improve your trading during "Silly Season" (Poll)

  1. Adam, your comments are wonderful -- not only about the markets (which I listen to daily), but especially about "life" and the balance between the physical world and the spiritual world. We live in both, and I am thankful for your comments on the markets (physical) and for your comments about "living well" (spiritual).

    Many thanks.

  2. DCFUSOR? I have always liked reading your comments at SEEKING ALPHA .COM Was suprised to see your post here! I need some one with your knowledge as a mentor.

  3. Dear Adam,
    Thank you so much for all the great insight, trading strategy and market commentary you and the MarketClub team have delivered the past year!
    Your daily market updates are incredibly educational, and worth the membership fee alone. Your service has made me a far better trader since joining, and I plan to continue as a member in 2012. I am truly thankful to you all.
    Have a safe and joyous Holiday Season, and best wishes in the New Year!
    Richard Tolson
    N Carolina

  4. Hi Adam and all the fantastic staff at Marketclub. I am a very happy member og Marketclub. I have been trading for some years and only made money since i joined Marketplan and created a gameplan. To follow the Trade Triangle signals and be disciplined. I am out of the market during christmas and new years. I will spend christmas in the UK.

    Thank you so much. I am very grateful for your service, your style, sense of humour and the way you guide us to be successful.

    See you in 2012

    Henrik Fabienke

    A happy farmer and trader in Denmark

  5. This year, I'll probably just keep trading, and ride the beta horse we've been having anyway for a good while. It's always good to take a break, but while you're hot - make hay while the sun shines, and this particular year I don't have a lot of social obligations, so...I'll be doing it at least somewhat.

  6. Appreciate your recommendations and totally feel the same way. Intend to take time off and enjoy the festive season as well as think back on what I have done right and wrong in this years' trading, hoping to come back strong in Q1.
    Enjoy the SILLY SEASON!!

  7. What a WONDERFUL comment! You are clearly a person who understands what life is (or should be) all about! I will say a special Christmas prayer to Our Lady of Chestochowa for you and your family!

  8. I am very lucky to have the opportunity to be able to watch your daily analysis, I enjoy your style of frankness and honesty and simplicity. Your philosophy teaching has educate me to understand the manipulated financial markets and fine tune my judgment, that I gain my confidence from, as time goes by. Every day is a wonderful learning lessons and every time is repeat self greed mistake. I do enjoy to learn and hopefully to be able a successful trader one day in time. Forgive me I am still a non membership person.

    Thanks & Merry Christmas.

    Best Regard, Donald Chan from Thailand.

  9. Adam ,Your honesty and trading explanations are very high.Not an active trader yet .Surely I will join Market club.Thanks and Merry Christmas to the personnel.

  10. During holidays i used to evaluate all my trades. where ever i lose, i m focusing on that portion and trying to find the reason, and , then make preparing to implement some new ideas to avoid losing money.



  11. Very good article...since I live in the Virgin Islands I wont be taking a vacation,,already on vacation..sorry for anybody in the cold did get down to 73 last night,,burrrr...hope everybody has a good and safe holiday season,,

  12. Here is a True message for you from Archangel Michael and Jeshua (Jesus)
    for today.

    Greetings, beloveds, all beings of light that you are. We are Archangel
    Michael and Yeshua.

    "Now marks the time for the greatest awakening of all. Many more are
    feeling the higher dimensions and living their lives accordingly. There
    is no turning back, for you are treading the path to enlightenment, dear
    friends and comrades of peace and love. We salute you and know that your
    journey has not been easy. There is a saying that goes, "Now is the time
    to put away childish things." But really, we say that now is the time to
    become a child again, of innocence and purity, of love and playful joy.
    You were all meant to be living a life of joy, so begin now! Look at
    things as a child does. Play at things as a child does. And as we have
    said before, Expect Miracles!

    By now, many of you are feeling the beautiful energy that is permeating
    the earth and inside your cells, and you have yourselves to thank and be
    grateful for this. For you have allowed this to pervade your lives and
    bodies and environment, despite negativity that is around you. You don't
    need to take this negativity in; you don't need to pay it any heed. Live
    like Earth is already ascended, like you are already ascended. Many
    have, as you know, and are assisting in the process for all to reach
    this pinnacle of love, this beautiful essence of love that is eternal
    and burns inside of you. Allow it to burn to a crescendo."

  13. I will hold my long term positions, bonds, and continue scalping profits with the ETF TZA in which I have had 17 straight winning trades in the last 7 trading sessions...easy money. I give back every time I leave the house. I celebrate Christ and am thankful for His guidance every well as I am thankful for everything I have and wish the best for all as well. Just like I never needed Mother's Day to be good to my mother, or Valentine's day to be good to my loved one..I do not need Christmas to celebrate Christ as I am in touch with Him most of every day already. Christ was born during the consensus, nearly 2000 years ago, which we all know was during the summer, so to celebrate the birth of Christ during these times is false. Christmas for the masses has been reduced to the exchanging of gifts to people we have arranged to receive from in advance, and a time when kids get greedy for more, without Christ even being in the picture...while others act out like blind fools running around malls gathering things. The Christmas tree came from the old pagan ritual, at this very same time of year, when they celebrated the winter solstice. They sacraficed their own children to the pagan god Baal and hung the heads of their sacraficed children on trees. Now we still have the trees and use ornaments instead of the heads of our children. Is that sickening or not? When I see a Christmas tree with ornaments, it reminds me of these crimes.

    It is the same with Easter. Easter was another pagan holiday celebrating fertility, hence the rabbits who are known to be..well you know. So every day is a celebration of Christ to me..and I don't care to celebrate pagan holidays that were warped into having something to do with Christ and then commercialized. I don't accept the compromise that early Christains made to the pagan god Baal worshipping community. May peace be with all..All days are the same for me. You manifest virtue in a selfless manner in your life on an ongoing basis to the best of your ability in the name of Christ, or you don't. If yu need a special day to remind you of this, then well...try it every day and you will feel better, and be more honest as a Christian...Buddhist, or whatever your faith may be..and so it is...

    Peace to All

  14. 1. being grateful for the gifts i have that money can't buy
    2. brainstorming on how i can add value to the lives of those around me
    3. celebrating the birth and life of the richest guy in the universe who became poor for our sakes

    thanks for a great article

  15. Well, silly season passed right by without a blink. Are the rules of trading undergoing fundamental change?

  16. Thank you for assist me to explain about trading. l want to know. l am a deaf man. l hope you are very good indeed.

    From lshmael Katema

  17. Merry Christmas!

    I enjoy my membership very much. Being retired I have a semi-balnced portfolio between Dividend stocks - Telecom's, Reit's and precious metals. I cut back on the precious metals down to two positions being CEF - that trades at a premium to NAV and GGN that pays a dividend.

    But I will also sleep well at night and enjoy the Hoidays!

  18. Adam,

    I have been a member of Market Club for 3 or 4 years now and have to say that your education and "tit bits" are absolutely wonderful. I think this post sums up what you offer in one post. It says so much about you and your ambitions for your clients and others alike.

    I wish you, your family and the staff at Market Club the best of health and happiness for the festive season and the coming new year.

  19. I enjoy the nice piece of your thought, it is constructive for me to read it and get some enlight,ment from it!


  21. Wouldn't that be four times? 🙂

    Anyway, I know English isn't your first language, but we reason to shout.

  22. Last year we had a top and a 10% correction about the middle of January,
    so I'm looking for the same pattern this coming January.
    Will use a close stop, and see what happens with small positions on the SPY (target 130.ish) and GLD (target 140.ish).
    I'm out via the stops or targets, whichever come first.
    Hopefully, I'll make a little green to pay the Santa bill 🙂

  23. your right Adam same thing evey year, in fact today looked so bad & dead I closed all my positions. time to party!!!

  24. Adam, does this mean you would blow out of positions on the Global Portfolio despite signals that just said "Get in"?

  25. Interestingly, the Dec 15 - Dec 24 Time period will be used to prepare all the fine foods and decorations for a deeply traditional Wigilia supper as we await the Lord's Birth; our entire family will gather on Christmas eve for a "meatless feast" of specially prepared Polish dishes ranging from creamed herring to succulent baked fish with 3 specialty soups, a variety of pierogi, and mouth watering baked goods; we begin by having the youngest family member locate the first star in the night sky, share our special Oplatek, enjoy the repast, sing Koledy, Pastoralki, Carols, then share presents, help in picking the "mess" up, then get ready to descend, en masse, upon our family parish for a Midnight Mass where all the pomp, circumstance and pagentry is presented again. Wesolych Swiat! Joy to the World! Merry Christmas to all! Szczesliwego Bozego Narodzenia!

  26. Dear Adam
    I appreciate your wise philosophy and it says a lot about you and your organisation. For me too its time for family, a bit of fun and some giving back. Happy Christmas to you and the team.

    best regards


  27. I think your advice is excellent!

    I will be taking time for myself and yet I have stops in place and what will be will be when I get back. I may just come back to find my positions are open and still alive and kicking....

  28. Thank you for the heads-up on silly season. Now that I know, I will not exit completely, but I will certainly tighten my stops. But, do you feel that the 'erratic' nature of the markets during Silly Season may cause some volatile 'gap-down' sessions? No amount of stop tightening can protect against that.

    1. Steve,

      Thank you for your feedback.

      I think if you're going to stay in positions over the silly season then certainly stops are an important element to keep in place. You may get stopped out, but if you do, you should be out market anyway.

      All the best,

  29. I will write new calls this coming expiration week on my long term holdings and go do as I always do. We tell folks covered calls are "like watching paint dry" so we will kick back and not worry. If manipulation drives a stock we are watching for possible purchase into a buying zone, we might write some puts to begin a new position if assigned. While the market takes care of the market, there are some very special "mini people" in need of some joy into their very difficult lives. It was a great year and now my joy will be in the giving.

  30. Work to live, not the other way around. Enjoying our reflective times, and our families and friends is what we should all be striving for for and what I wish for everyone.

  31. I just started trading,enjoy your videos lesons you give I find it helpful it realy gives confidense. I hopefully join the market club. Thank you for sharing your knowledge with others. Mery christmas.

  32. As i am in the minority here as a trader i will respond. I love to trade. it gets out of bed every morning. I am retired now and can spend all day trading. Last year was really tough going. I was determined in the summer to fight this evil beast. I was unsuccessful until this past week. So i cant put my time card in the rack and go on vacation. Taking a break a respite, is healthy, and you deserve it if you are an active trader. When you are doing poorly,its the best time, based on my experience this past year. If you are loosing money and it's no fun, you are on the wrong train. Get off, have some fun, come back fresh and eager to fight the beast. The trading this past year was as tough as i have seen in many years. For the obvious reason, we experienced, as we are active home gamers. For me, its exciting time to match my whit to slay this dragon. Coming here after working my plan is relaxation. Your ideas, opinions and experience is so valuable, it keeps me coming back, and made me a better trader. "thank you very much" ELVIS-see you all at K-Mart! - In the old record department.

  33. Adam, these are a very good recommendation for that 'special' time of the year of apprercition of our blessings.
    For every 'member' of INO 'family' I'd like to wish a very enjoyable Holidays time & all of the very best in 2011. Also, thank you for this great opportunity to be a part of it.

  34. Good choices Adam---I just finished doing the Church Bulletin for this week. I will use a lot more time doing the Bulletin for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day so my trading time will be cut down. Merry Christmas and Happy Healthy New Year to you and your family and also to your entire INO family. Thank You for everything.

  35. I may trade now and then if I see a good opportunity,but not daily as usual. Maybe a swing trade or two.
    I agree 100% in giving back to others. I try to increase my giving in proportion to my trading successes. I know I have been fortunate and try to remind myself daily about our financial,mental and spiritual well being today.
    Wishing everyone a wonderful holiday.-

  36. Not trading -
    1 in my little way celebrating of the life of the guy who lived on the earth a long time ago and the wisdom he brought to me.
    2 re-evaluating my trading/investing plan and getting ready for Q1
    3 doing some work on economic growth and bubbles

  37. I like each of your five key recommendation for the Christmas season. Although not yet a treader or a member of Market Club I have watched your videos and advice for over a year and alway felt the content was excellent and honest. I intend to start trading in the coming year and Market Club will certainly be my membership choice.
    All the very best Adam have a great "silly season" as you call it


  38. Adam, I like your style and the way you do business so much that I might even become a member some day. Reflecting is a great thing to do at this time of year as well as connecting with family and friends. However, I plan to spend some serious time developing my trading plan so that I can enter 2011 with a firm idea of exactly how I plan to operate my new trading business. Some trip planning is also in store. I wish you the best for the Holidays and the New Year...

  39. sir,


    Thre are only THREE TIMES IN ANY MARKET viz.



    (2) EXIT TIME


  40. My vote was "All of the Above"!

    The 15th is a little early in the month so I am always watching the market. Vacation, spending time with family and using this holy season to reflect on past and future is always important.
    I have used and appreciate your market expertise.
    Merry Christmas,

  41. I'd mention that I had to chose from two boxes that were both appropriate. I'm re-evaluating my plan, yes, while also taking a trading break -- for me, that is a break.

  42. Very nicely put together Adam!
    I am a huge fan of balance and quiet time, definitely does build the inner strength!
    Have a fabulous "Silly Season", I have been enjoying your videos for years, very helpful, thanks so much.

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