Absent-minded as ever, I was unaware that First Notice Date was fast approaching for my Gold Contracts. My broker, IB, popped a dialog up on my screen about it.Basically it said this: get out of these contracts by the end of the current session, or we’ll liquidate them. Nice of them to warn me.

So, I should have been trading the April Gold, not the February.This qualifies as a mistake on my part. The rule on recognizing this sort of mistake is to get out immediately, so I did.

[In theory I should buy the April contracts.We’ll see; for some reason, I always hesitate when rolling to the next contract. “One should always look for excuses to buy the strongest market”, Goslin likes to say, and right now, Gold is the strongest market on the board.]

Over the years, I’ve made plenty of stupid mistakes…buying when I meant to sell, submitting the wrong stop on an order, such that it instantly put me in the position, rather than putting me in on reaching the stop price, and so on.While these things are irritating, and, depending on the spread, possibly costly, it’s never a good idea to stay in such a trade.They’re effectively “ad hoc” trades.

A mistake is entirely different from a losing trade.Losing trades are just the cost of doing business, and they can’t be eliminated. Mistakes we can endeavor to eliminate. 🙂