Dan tips up on pancake day: STA monthly meeting 13th Feb 2018

Industry veteran Daniel Gramza’s address at our new address, the Walkie Talkie building at 20 Fenchurch Street, London EC2M 7QH, was eagerly anticipated.  He reminded us that once before he had travelled to Britain from his native Chicago to address an audience of technical analysts: in 1990 for Cambridge Research – which does feel like a very long time ago.

The fact he started out trading in the futures and options pits was self evident as he regaled us with hand signals and shared reminiscences of his early days.  Again, it all feels a very long time ago – something I was reminded of today when, in conversation, I made the old-fashioned hand signal for a telephone call (thumb and index finger extended across my ear).  More importantly he said, ‘the floor influences how I think about markets’ and that ‘on the floor you hear it by sound’, and charts are a picture of that.

He then went into a detailed description of candles, their interpretation, and the psychology behind them.  While perhaps a bit too basic for STA members, the way he explained these did seem to resonate with some of the audience and a few are points worth reiterating.  For example: ‘the body of the candle represents market acceptance, while shadows are its rejection’.  I also liked the idea that after a significant candle, the next 2 to 5 periods are crucial.  Trouble is, this might create too much ‘wait and see’.  Paradoxically he claims to like long-dated options, yet feels that this trade must be profitable within 3 days.

The charts he used were rather dark and lacked definition, supplied by the spread-betting arm Fineco of Italy’s UniCredit bank.  He has obviously worked with them before (three of their staff were prominent at our meeting), and has plans for another few talks in the UK; he offered VIP passes to the audience for The London FOREX Show in 10 days’ time – which STA members can already get as a perk! (Call the STA office on 020 7125 0038 for more details).

Poor thing, having struggled a bit standing in front of the screen projector – so the charts ran across his nose – he then talked at the screen, thus blocking the audience’s sight line of the section he was talking about.  After that his mobile phone rang in his pocket.  He had the grace and wit to say: ‘I think that might be a margin call’.

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One comment on “Dan tips up on pancake day: STA monthly meeting 13th Feb 2018
  1. Dan Gramza says:


    It was brought to my attention that I may want to flush out some of the ideas mentioned in the presentation summary.

    From my point of view the trading floor did provide sights and sounds of buying and selling order flow. These references provided the foundation to my approach to Japanese candles and I believe are represented in a candle chart.

    The power of the next 2 to 5 periods comes into has been play after a technical buy or sell trade has been entered. The intent is to use the next 2 to 5 periods of time to provide insights into trade management. For example, typically, depending on the volatility characteristics of the market, a trade is expected to be profitable within the next 2 to 5 periods of time or the size and shape of the 2 to 5 candles after a large price movement can create clues as to whether the price movement is profit taking or a change in trend.

    The option trade is based on the concept of using a candle or other technical buy or sell signal on a daily chart to initiate an option trade. The option parameters that I typically wrap around this type of technical buy for a long call or sell for a long put are: an option position with delta near 100, for the trade I discussed in the presentation the trade should be profitable within 3 days of entry and the expiration beyond the current expiration is used so that theta or time decay will not have an impact on the initial part of the trade plus allow time so the trade is able to mature before theta begins to have an impact. I look for very specific price behavior and if the trade is not profitable within three days, the trade is exited and the money is used to finance another trade.

    The charts were very dark and difficult to see. I found out after the presentation the chart colors can be customized for better viewing.

    I am not promoting nor am I connected to Fineco Bank. They are full service bank and broker that provides access to futures markets, ETFs, 50 FX pairs, CFDs and 26 different equity markets.

    I also want to thank the STA for the opportunity for me to share ideas with the STA members.

    Best wishes for much success in your trading.

    Kindest regards,

    Dan Gramza

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About Nicole Elliott

Nicole Elliott

A graduate of the London School of Economics and Political Science (BSc Social Psychology) Nicole Elliott has worked in banks in the City of London for the last 30 years. Whether in sales, trading or forecasting technical analysis has always been the bedrock of her thinking. Key expertise lies within all areas of treasury: foreign exchange, money markets, fixed income and commodities.

She has also added to the body of knowledge of the industry writing the first western book on Ichimoku Cloud Charts. Strong media links and a cult following are due to her prescient calls on the markets and often entertaining format.

Nicole can be contacted at trending@sta-uk.org

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