Starting this month, an excellent Forex trader is going to share with FXStreet her new educational series about the MACD. This time, we want to present you Jennifer Thornburg.
Jennifer Thornburg is a 10-year experienced trader followed by thousands of traders. Thornburg has a blog, and runs her online trading course at jennifer.bz, where she posts daily setups and helps members to find their way to profitable trading by sharing her unique perspective.
Keep reading to know her thoughts about her new video sessions, the role of women in Forex business and her famous and controversial article called Sex and Trading. And remember, watch her first video at 00.00 GTM on Friday September 9: How To Use The MACD, With Jennifer #1: Introducing The MACD And The Hopper.
How did you know that you wanted to be a Forex trader?
I learned about making money on the exchange rate when I was visiting Hong Kong in 1990. At the money exchange office I met a man who carried a bag with $200,000 cash. Every day he went to the currency exchange office and, if the price was right, he would buy or sell his bag of money making a profit on the exchange. He was way ahead of his time. 11 years later I took my first Forex class and I was hooked on technical analysis. I never forgot the man in the Hong Kong money exchange office, he inspired me to find the patterns in human behavior as prices constantly go up and down.
What do you enjoy the most about trading?
I enjoy tracking price action as it works through a series of trend patterns, and then it works through a series of range patterns, and eventually trends again. It’s about anticipating what comes next, and knowing that all price action comes down to trends and ranges. If I can see the market failing to trend, I know it’s probably going to drop into the range patterns. It’s thrilling (and profitable) when I draw it out on a chart and watch the market flow through the patterns I anticipated over the course of the next few days.
How many hours do you trade in your daily routine?
I usually do an hour of analysis before the U.S. session starts. When I decide which pairs and which patterns I want to trade this week, I can set up The Button, my semi-automated program, to watch for the MACD based setups to happen and then open or close my trades for me, so if I’m not watching, I won’t miss it. Sometimes I use pending orders when I know exactly where I want the trade open. When that’s done, I keep an eye on things via my mobile device. The great majority of my trades open when I’m not there either with The Button program or with a pending order. So, I would say my actual time in front of the charts is about 2 to 3 hours a day. I only trade on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.
What is your favorite trading strategy and why?
The Combo Trading strategy is my favorite because I like to track price action as it flows through the trend and range patterns. I use 2 moving averages (50 SMA and 100 SMA) which I call “Combo Lines”. Those 2 lines give context to all price action so I can determine a trend from an Inside Range pattern or an Outside Range pattern. With just 2 moving averages on my chart, I gain the advantage of having an expectation about market behavior based on the pattern it’s in, and I gain an idea about where my trade entries and stop losses should go.
What is the MACD strategy about and why is a good signal to identify trading opportunities in markets?
The MACD is a phenomenal indicator that identifies change in the market. It’s like saying, “Hey, what was happening a little while ago, is no longer happening”. If the market was trending and now it’s not doing that anymore, MACD gives a clear cut picture of the end of the trend. Or, if the market was in neutral range pattern, not making progress in one direction, eventually decision comes back into the market, and the MACD picks up the change alerting you to a new trade opportunity. When you can anticipate momentum and direction, you can get the best possible timing for your trades. I think the MACD is the most useful indicator you can get your hands on.
What do you think about the role of women in Forex business?
I don’t really think about gender too much. I work privately from my computer so I never run into gender-related work issues. When it comes to trading, we are all just human beings. But, since you asked, I can think of one difference between men and women’s brains that may motivate you to be part of a trading group where we can all benefit from the opposite gender’s natural strengths. That is, men naturally focus one one thing at a time. They tend to remove all extraneous information and zoom in on the task at hand. Woman naturally have more “webby” minds. Since we don’t naturally remove extraneous information, we can often make connections or correlations from past experiences or non-related things we heard in the news, etc. Both ways of thinking are strong, but both ways of thinking have natural weaknesses too.
Any advice on how women can balance personal and professional lives, being in the trading industry, now in 2016?
If you want to be successful, accept that it’s hard to balance personal life and motherhood with professional life and trading. Don’t try to make it easy. It’s not easy. You have to be willing to be uncomfortable sometimes. The demands of trading include needing time to concentrate on your work, having to make decisions that carry consequences, and handling the pressure when the heat is on. Wait a minute… Doesn’t that also sound like raising kids?
Raising a family and taking care of your personal life is time-consuming and difficult. The consequences of your actions are felt throughout the rest of your life. Similarly, having the self-control to master a strategy, taking the time to plan and manage your trades, making tough decisions is all part of trading. You can do it. When you do, the fact that it was hard makes it all the more rewarding.
You are well-known for your article called Sex and Trading. What do you think both topics have in common?
Well… If you’re a trader, sex and trading are probably your 2 favorite topics! All the grins and jokes aside, there are quite a few profound correlations. If it’s important, you will plan, you will be careful, you will not jump in too soon, and it will be the greatest thing in your life. The heat of moment is there to fashion you into the kind of person/trader that finds success. The good life you and everyone else wants is right in front of you. Be a great trader, and be great at everything else in your life, too. It’s worth it.
You can watch Thornburg‘s videos at the end of Monday and Thursday at 00.00 GMT during September:
- September 9: How To Use The MACD, With Jennifer #1: Introducing The MACD And The Hopper
- September 13: How To Use The MACD, With Jennifer #2: MACD For Momentum And Direction
- September 16: How To Use The MACD, With Jennifer #3: 2 Moving Averages Give Context To Price Action
- September 20: How To Use The MACD, With Jennifer #4: MACD – Sometimes A Point Of Entry, Sometimes A Stop-Loss, Sometimes A Profit Target
- September 23: How To Use The MACD, With Jennifer #5: The Reverse Trigger Finger Is The MACD Counter-Trend Trade Signal
- September 27: How To Use The MACD, With Jennifer #6: Stop Loss And Profit Target Strategies The Work
- September 30: How To Use The MACD, With Jennifer #7: Summary Of The MACD Strategies