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Thomas Bulkowski’s successful investment activities allowed him to retire at age 36. He is an internationally known author and trader with 30+ years of stock market experience and widely regarded as a leading expert on chart patterns. He may be reached at

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Bulkowski's Trading Results

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Busted
Patterns
Candles Chart
Patterns
Event
Patterns
Small Patterns
Market
Industrials (^DJI):
Transports (^DJT):
Utilities (^DJU):
Nasdaq (^IXIC):
S&P500 (^GSPC):
As of 04/21/2017
20,548 -30.95 -0.2%
9,134 7.68 0.1%
706 4.81 0.7%
5,911 -6.26 -0.1%
2,349 -7.15 -0.3%
YTD
4.0%
1.0%
7.0%
9.8%
4.9%
Tom's Targets    Overview: 04/17/2017
20,100 or 21,150 by 05/01/2017
8,500 or 9,500 by 05/01/2017
725 or 685 by 05/01/2017
5,950 or 5,650 by 05/01/2017
2,275 or 2,425 by 05/01/2017
Mutt Winners: None YTD

Written by and copyright © 2005-2017 by Thomas N. Bulkowski. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: You alone are responsible for your investment decisions. See Privacy/Disclaimer for more information.

This page shows my trading results for the last several years. Since late 2006, I find that I am trying to beat the average results of prior years and that is adding negative psychological pressure to my trading. So, I have decided not to update the form in the future.

 

The following table shows my trading results compared to the three benchmark indices: the Standard and Poors 500 Index, Nasdaq composite, and Dow Jones industrial average. I do not trade or manage money for others, just for my own account.

Year

My Gain

S&P500

Nasdaq

DJIA

2000

14.8%

-10.1%

-39.3%

-6.2%

2001

18.7%

-13.0%

-21.1%

-7.1%

2002

9.0%

-23.4%

-31.5%

-16.8%

2003

13.5%

28.69%*

50.0%

28.28%*

2004

29.1%

10.88%*

8.6%

5.31%*

2005

15.4%

4.91%*

1.4%

1.72%*

2006

22.2%

13.6%

9.5%

16.3%

# Avg

17.5%

1.7%

-3.2%

3.1%

Notes

# Avg: This is a simple average of the numbers listed in the table.

Green appears for years in which I beat the index, red for negative years, and white otherwise. The indices measure the change in value from the close on the last trading day in each year and do not include dividends or interest unless an asterisk (*) appears. Those are total returns for the indices as reported by the Wall Street Journal. My gains are marked to market, meaning they contain both realized and unrealized gains or losses for the calendar year and include dividends and interest paid on my portfolio throughout the year.

Trading Results: Analysis

Top 

The bear market years of 2000 to 2002 show as red in the indices, but I was able to make a tidy profit in those years. The indices beat me in 2003 and achieved stunning gains. I traded little that year (7 round trip trades) and what I owned did not appreciate as much as hoped. The following year, 2004, I made a massive 29% when I decided to take trading more seriously. In 2005, I made two more trades than in 2004. However, each trade appreciated more in 2004 than in 2005. Dividends and interest helped more in 2005.

2006

This was an unusual year for my portfolio. In June I found the markets too choppy to trade so I withdrew into cash and kept a close eye on my long term holdings, like utility stocks and Michaels Stores. Rumors circulated that Michaels was going to be bought out in the 40s. So I pushed most of my chips into the pot on this one stock and did not see any compelling stocks to buy with what little remained of my cash.

Michaels was bought out at 44 on Halloween, closing out my position that I entered at a split-adjusted price of 88 cents in 1990. Once I cashed out, I had funds to buy many potential candidates, which I did, starting in November. The result of the buyout and the soaring of my utility holdings and other stocks blended to create a good year that again beat the indices.

Year

Wins/
Losses

Profit/
Loss

Round
Trips

Hold
Time

My
Gain

2000

40%

$1.66

41

120days

14.8%

2001

61%

$5.29

14

41days

18.7%

2002

38%

$1.52

23

51days

9.0%

2003

73%

$12.38

7

25days

13.5%

2004

58%

$3.68

39

29days

29.1%

2005

55%

$2.76

41

30days

15.4%

2006

67%

$6.89

31

61 days

22.2%

Avg

56%

$4.88

28

51days

17.5%

Notes

The wins/losses column is a count of the winners divided by a count of the winners and losers (that is, all trades), including open positions at year end. The profit/loss column shows for every dollar lost how much I gained, marked to market. For example, in 2001 for every dollar lost I made $5.29. The round trips show the number of trades I made during the year and do not include open positions held open at year end. A round trip is a buy and a sale. The hold time is the average for all positions bought and sold within the same year. My gain is the same as in the prior table and I show it here for reference. The avg line is a simple average of the above numbers.

Trading Results: Analysis

In the bear market years of 2000 and 2002, I lost more often than I won and yet still made money. How? I kept my losses small and let my winners run while collecting dividends and interest on my cash. I am impressed by the $4.55 profit/loss number. For every dollar I lost, I made nearly $5 and earned an average of 16.8% even though three years included a bear market. And I did it all without going short, without using leverage, and trading only stocks.

2006

In 2006, I traded less than the prior year, held twice as long, found more winners, and made more money than in 2005. I did not short nor use leverage on my stock trades. I did use options this year. One was a covered call and 3 were calls. In 2 of those trades I made a small amount of money and two I lost a small amount, ending with a net loss close to $0.

-- Thomas Bulkowski

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Written by and copyright © 2005-2017 by Thomas N. Bulkowski. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: You alone are responsible for your investment decisions. See Privacy/Disclaimer for more information. I'm having an out of money experience.