Thursday, February 26, 2009



This is the website for 'idiots' like me, err,  and you?.....wannabe bloggers designing their own sites...stringy newbies searching the web endlessly for free downloadable templates they can use....continually shifting from one design to another never really knowing what's best for them....stubbornly refusing to sign up for paid web design services, hoping they can finally put together the right design combination on their own...frustatingly watching their sites linger continually at the bottom of page rankings!

Well, we've got good news!  "Web Design For Idiots" is now up and running! This is a design website that offers free tips and tricks for newbies. Authored by a 'girl hack' who has tremendous patience for upstarts and a comforting knowledge of what it is to be an 'idiot' blogger, Website Design For Idiots is remarkably a 'must see' site for both the experienced and the inexperienced !

The site has tons of information, tips, and tricks, free advice and how-to's!  This site is a treasure trove of information for bloggers like us. Every single visit to the site is a wholesome tutorial experience by itself - you will never fail to learn something new or pick up a good pointer or two.  Her tips on what bloggers should avoid doing with their blogs were remarkable, and even started me to realize that after almost half a year of blogging, I have not inched much as a newbie. Her advice on the use of freely available templates is truly revealing and made me review everything I have done as a blogger in the past.

Well, is really for idiots like me. Hard hitting, direct to the point, no frills! Just about anything about designing your blog is on this site! If you are a newbie like me, you must visit her site. (Yeah, that's her lovely picture on the right!) is void of complicated, hard to follow blogging tips. Just simple tricks, common sensical tips, and a pile of links to important websites you wouldn't ordinarily be able to discover just surfing around.The girl-hack author is also offering free consultation services. She will analyse the layout and design of any site on request and even post the review on her site.
For a hack who claims she's has not undergone formal training on web design, she's a revelation 'coz her site is a treasure trove of information for newbie bloggers struggling to get noticed in the blogosphere. 

So , if you are one of those growing number of 'idiots' in the blogosphere, go visit the site now..... you'd see me there too!

web design for idiots main page website tutorials



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For the last two trading days for February, 2009  the flurry of economic data will be crucial in telling us whether the candlestick charts will show us -
  1. if new positioning will occur in anticipation of a further dollar rise in the near term;
  2. or, if a possible month end book squaring will take place should jitter bugs hit traders once more if the data proves to be worse than expected as will be published.
Thursday Feb 26                                  Friday Feb 27
US:Durable Goods Orders                   EMU:HICP
1:30 PM                                              10:00 AM
US:Jobless Claims                                EMU:Unemployment Rate
1:30 PM                                              10:00 AM
US:New Home Sales                           US:GDP                       
3:00 PM                                              1:30 PM
US:EIA Natural Gas Report                US:NAPM-Chicago
3:30 PM                                             2:45 PM
US:Money Supply                               US:Consumer Sentiment
9:30 PM                                             2:55 PM
JP:CPI                                                 US:Farm Prices
11:30 PM                                            8:00 PM
11:30 PM
JP:Household Spending
11:30 PM
JP:Unemployment Rate
11:30 PM
JP:Industrial Production
11:50 PM
JP:Retail Sales
11:50 PM

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Highly criticized, sometimes maligned, Izea's K Mart Shopping Spree Campaign turned out to be a huge marketing success and set new standards against which social media specialists worldwide will now have to gauge their own campaigns.

Izea's success can be attributed to the fact that it was done by bloggers for other bloggers...and, the key world for this successful campaign came in a five-letter word - TRUST!

Consumers tend to believe more what other consumers say about a product than what corporate advertising peddle to them. The sponsored bloggers who participated in Izea's K Mart campaign were K Mart shoppers themselves and what they wrote about just naturally spread like wildfire among other bloggers thus, giving K Mart an unprecedented exposure and increased patronage. Watch the slide below (Izea/K Mart Case Study) if you don't believe what I mean. See what some of the participating bloggers in this campaign had written. Review the metrics yourself. Then, you'll know what I mean.

The Izea/K Mart campaign definitely attracted more shoppers to patronize K Mart outlets but much more than that, the campaign made the shoppers become more aware of K Mart's other special offers like the 'Lay Away Plan' and "Gift Ideas Under $25" which otherwise they would not have paid much attention to.

With this campaign, Izea has again proven itself to be a force to reckon with when it comes to social media marketing! Take a closer look at Izea's Social Media Case Study and you'll know the metrics of the campaign serves as proof to this contention!

Social Media Case StudyPost?slot_id=32665&url=http%3a%2f%2fsocialspark

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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Distinguishing Online Forex Brokers from One Another

TOKYO - MARCH 17:  Traders monitor stocks at G...

Online brokers may be categorized into "Market Makers", "ECN" or Electronics Communication Network Brokers, or "NDD" or No Dealing Desk Brokers. For a neophyte trader, it will be hard to distinguish one from the other. Besides, very few of these online brokers describe their services in detail and more often than not, they make themselves appear as if they are all market makers.

What is a market maker?

A market maker provides pricing and liquidity for a particular currency pair and stands ready to buy or sell that currency at the quoted price. The market maker has the volume and the liquidity to take the opposite side of your trade. He has the option of either holding that position or partially or fully offsetting it with other market participants, managing their aggregate exposure to their clients.

Each market maker has a "dealing desk," which is the traditional method that most banks and financial institutions use. Market makers provide two-way pricing to customers throughout the day. These prices sometimes are quoted on a "fixed" basis, meaning that they do not move throughout the day, while other firms use a dynamic spread system, which means the prices change as the liquidity in certain pairs change. The market maker interacts with other market makers banks to manage their global FX positions/risk. Each market maker offers a slightly different price in a particular currency pair based on their global FX book. Banks, investments banks, broker/dealers, and FCMs make up the majority of this category. Market makers are compensated by their ability to manage their global FX risk. This may include spread revenue, netting revenue, and revenue on swaps and conversions of residual profits or losses.

A market maker may choose to keep the trader's position without offsetting it in the market. This will mean that the trader's profit is the market maker's loss and vice versa, and may lead to a possible conflict of interest between the trader and his market maker. A market maker earns their commission from the spread between the bid and offer price and because of this, the trader may at times be at the mercy of the market maker who has the power to increase the spread to minimize his own loss or shave off profits from the traders' position.

What is an NDD broker?

A no-dealing desk broker does not have a dealing desk but instead uses external liquidity providers to provide pricing and liquidity for its clients. The liquidity providers may include banks and other brokers they have networked with. Usually, they have their own proprietary trading platforms which connect to participating banks and brokers (liquidity providers) in their own network. The liquidity providers send in competing bids and offers into the platform, resulting in the best bid and offer being displayed to the client. A no-dealing desk broker may increase the spread to earn its commission.

An NDD broker acts as a conduit between a customer and a market maker. The broker sends the customer's order to another party to be executed by the dealing desk of the market maker. The spreads that the customer receives are dependant on the market maker or dealer that the broker routes the customer's transactions through, and either a fixed or dynamic system can be used. Brokers generally charge fees for this service and/or are compensated by the market maker for the transactions that they route to the market maker/dealing desk.

What is an ECN broker?

A Forex ECN broker does not have a dealing desk but instead provides a subscription to a trading platform where multiple market makers, banks and traders can enter in competing bids and offers into the platform either inside or outside the spread, allowing traders to be market makers and have their trades filled by multiple liquidity providers. A trader might have their buy order filled by liquidity provider "A", and close the same order against liquidity provider "B", or have their trade matched internally by the bid or offer of another trader. The best bid and offer is displayed to the trader along with the market book depth and combined available volume at each price. The ECN broker has a wider base of marketplace participants providing pricing which results to smaller spreads. An ECN earns by charging a small fee for each transaction.
The ECN is not responsible for execution, only the transmission of the order to the dealing desk from which the price was taken. In this system, spreads are determined by the difference between the best bid and the best offer at a particular point in time on the ECN. In this model, the ECN is compensated by fees charged to the customer plus a "kick-back" or "rebate" from the dealing desk based on the amount of volume or order flow that it is given from the ECN.

Offhand, it will really be hard to distinguish which broker is of what type since practically everyone is electronically linked with each other one way or the other. A market maker may have one or two clients who are NDD brokers who in turn provide services to other ECN brokers.

What we need to distinguish is who is a legitimate broker and who is not? On this matter, it is always important to know if the broker you are dealing with is regulated by an acceptable regulatory body. By an acceptable regulatory body, it must be one which is internationally recognized and not just a made up regulatory organization from some obscure country.

As part of Samurai Daddy's commitment to help weed out the scammers among the lot of online brokers, this blog will be regularly featuring its choice of online forex brokers.

Samurai Daddy's First Five Choice of Online Brokers

Broker Category
Regulatory Body
Pip Spread
Capital Market Services
NFA(US), FSAuthority(UK), CFTC(US)
3-4 pip
Advanced Currency Markets SA
1 pip
Global Forex Trading
NFA(US), FSAuthority(UK), CFTC(US), ASIC(AU), FSAgency(JP)
1 pip
Forex Capital Markets, LLC
1 pip
MG Financial Group
3-5 pip


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Tuesday, February 24, 2009


Yup! Call me' Samurai Daddy' from now on as I give you daily updates on my forex outlook based on the Japanese Candlestick charts.Samurai Daddy will be your daily trading companion and I will share with you my insights, opinions, and trading strategies (free o charge). For those, who wants personalized trading advice, or wants my help to get out of nasty trading situations, please feel free to use the yahoo messenger at the side bar of this blog. Don't worry, the exchange of instant messages are visible only to the user and me so much unlike the other online chatting platforms. So, you can discuss trading issues with Samurai Daddy confidentialy using Yahoo Messenger. I will look forward to having confidential chats wth you soon. Just catch me online!
Here now is my latest update:
The monthly candlestick chart has so far maintained its dollar-bullish bias. The 'Bullish Ladder Bottom' reversal pattern is turning out true to form for the USDJPY with the February Candle emerging out to be the confirmation candle.
The daily USDJPY candlestick chart is also reflecting this bullish bias. So far, the price has remained above the 93.55 level which is our reference point to confirm the reversal pattern. USDJPY just have to close at or above this level by the end of February to maintain a dolar-bullish outlook. USDJPY is set to test the 95.46 level which is the next consolidation area and a breakof this warrants a test of the 97.00 area and on to its ultimate reversal objective of 99.86. Current fundamentals are favoring this scenario.
Even the EURUSD monthly candlestick is showing a slight bullish-dollar outlook wth the January candle forming a bearish dark cloud cover by the January, 2009 candle which significantly breached the midpoint of the December, 2008 upward candle. EURUSD is consolidating at the current levels but has not shown any attempt to pull down the dollar once more. Samurai Daddy still favors a dollar bullish bias with a break of the 1.27 level paving the way for are-test of 1.20.

The USDCHF monthly candlestick chart is also confirming the market's slightly dollar-bullish bias. The January candle has formed a bullish piercing pattern and the February candle needs to confirm this. USDCHF may enter a consolidation phase though, as the GBPUSD current levels may stall further declines of the European currencies. GBP has continually declined against the dollar since August, 2008. It seems to have reached equilibrium at the current levels and in the process has stalled the dollar's rise against the Euro and CHF. The market is looking for fresh fundamentals to push the dollar higher against the European currencies.

Over-all, however, Samurai Daddy maintains a strong dollar bullish outlook, specially for the Japanese Yen which I am expecting to knock at the 100.00 level in the near term.
Happy trading!

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Thursday, February 19, 2009

Market Brief From ACM

Image used to convey the idea of currency conv...Image via Wikipedia

By Advanced Currency Markets
(Asian session snapshot)

The Usd bullish momentum was tempered slightly in the Asian session and we expect this theme to continue thru the day. The EurUsd traded back up to 1.2595, after trading to a 1.2529 session low, while the USDJPY has also come off its 93.96 high to trade around 93.40. Asian indexes are continuing their US lead, with Nikkei currently up 0.33%. The Gold surge carries on, with prices breaking previous resistance levels and holding at $975oz. ETF buying provided strong momentum to the upside, putting the $1000oz closer in sight. Despite the temporary pullback in FX themes today we expect the Usd will continue to appreciate mid term.

In US news, within yesterday’s FOMC minutes was the Fed announcement of new longer-term economic projections, which included a long-term inflation goal of 1.7 - 2.0%.The inflation goal is a clear move towards inflation targeting.

Yesterday’s BoE minutes revealed that the BoE decision to cut rates by 50bp at its February meeting was approved by a vote of 8 - 1. Again, the lone dissenter, Blanchflower, who is expected to retire in May, voted in favor of a 100bp cut.

As expected, the BoJ held rates steady at 0.10%. The Jpy continues to lose ground against the Usd, as political instability threatens market perception of the government’s ability to navigate in this challenging global and domestic economic environment. Ex-Finance Minister Nakagawa's resignation following the G7 debacle, was just another confidence eroding event in Prime Minister Aso troubled tenure. We are cautious in pursuing recent Jpy weakness due to historical safe have status. However we will be watching for any opportunity to build short Jpy positions.

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Trading Update: $3,800 Profit On A $5,000 Capital In Just 7 Days!

YenImage by Mr Wabu via Flickr

Yes, this is the kind of profit you can gain from trading currencies on line - $3,800 profit on an initial capital of only $5,000 in just 7 days! (And, this is still conservative compared to the trading records of some experienced traders!

In my instructional demo trading using the Japanese Candlestick Charts, I bought 1 lot (worth $100,000) of Japanese Yen at 90.11 last February 11, 2009. (How this is possible will be the topic of my next blog!)

Our objective of 93.55 has been reached and so I will liquidate my position at this level before the U.S. market closes today. I will publish the actual profit I made on my next update tomorrow. (At the price levels of USD-JPY as of this writing (93.60), my profit stands at $3,600!)

This is how effective the Japanese Candlestick charting technique is on spot currency trading. Although, the candlestick chart has not shown me any sign that the dollar may pullback, I will just the same square off my position and actualize profit for now.

The dollar may pull back a little in tomorrow's early Asian trading so, I look forward to re-establishing my buy position then. If you have questions, comments, or suggestions, please feel free to post it below. Just click on the 'comments' text link at the bottom of this post and a comment form will pop up for your use. Or, you may use my yahoo messenger at the side bar if I happen to be available at the time you read this post! Watch out for more of my instructional trading updates.

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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

My Trading Update: USDYEN Has Broken Above The 92.05 Level !

With the U.S. markets closed for the 'President's Day' yesterday, the currency market was nothing but boring ! Trading was limited to a narrow range of only 50 pips between the high and low.

Early in today's Asian session, traders were already anticipating the re-opening of the U.S. markets and are picking up from where they left off last Friday with a slight bias for the U.S. currency.

USDYEN has already broken our 92.05 reference point in early Asian trading and is now poised to break the 92.30 which is the next resistance point. Although our initial profit objective (set at 92.05) has been reached, we will still hold on to our position for an anticipated assault on 92.30. A clear break above this level will again warrant us to continue to hold on to our current position established at 90.11 on February 11, 2009.

USDYEN needs to close above 93.55 this month to retain it's bullish dollar outlook on the monthly candlestick chart and to confirm the Bullish Bottom Ladder Pattern. If the 92.30 level is breached (which I believe is likely to happen towards the opening European session today), then it is likely to test the 93.55 month end objective.

We currently have a floating profit of $2400 from our open position and we shall adjust our stop higher to 91.11 to protect our profits in case the market retraces below 91 again.
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Saturday, February 14, 2009

U.S. Dollar Near Term Outlook

I summarized my near term dollar outlook for the weekend with an update of my demo trading.

I made it into an online presentation made possible through ZOHO SHOW, a beatiful website offering a lot of online website services for free. (Visit the site at

Click on the enlarge icon at the bottom of the frame above to view the presentation in full screen mode.

Please feel free to send me your comments, questions, or whatever suggestions you may have. Click the comment button below to post your comment or chat with me through my Yahoo

Messenger widget located at the sidebar.

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Friday, February 13, 2009

My Candlestick Trading Alert: Dollar poised to Break 92.08 Today

A Japanese silver one yen piece of 1870 (even ...Image via Wikipedia

Both the USD JPY Monthly and Daily Charts are now clearly showing key reversal patterns with the daily chart poised to break the initial resistance at 92.08. A break of the 92.08 level looks up to 93.55 as next target.

On the monthly candlestick chart, the U.S. Dollar needs to close above 93.55 by the end of the month to confirm the reversal formed from October, 2008 to January 2009. As the confirmation candle, February needs to close above the 93.55 level which is the midpoint of December, 2008 candle which now serves as our reference point for this month's trading.

Over-all, the candlestick chart is showing market expectations for a dollar surge near term against the majors. With every one at G7 having crafted their respective economic stimulus packages, the market will be watching who can rev up their economy first. This will be a race to get out of recession with cards slightly favoring the U.S.

My demo trading update: I re-established a buy at 90.18 yesterday. Maintaining my stop at 88.50 with an immediate near term target to take profit at the failure of 92.08!



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I Finally Got A Page Rank of 2!

Powered by  MyPagerank.Net

Today, I was totally surprised and overjoyed to see that I finally have a page rank of 2. It was only last night when I had this site graded at ( a website I stumbled into while doing my daily entrecard runs), and I was disappointed to have gotten a grade of only 61.

So, today's page rank discovery has totally and completely overwhelmed me

A struggling newbie, I was for a long time!....awkwardly feeling my way around....impatiently
picking up a lesson or two from the other bloggers whom I have included in my fave list...trying too hard to get noticed...hoping to discover the secrets of those successful bloggers who have profitably monetized their blogs.

But alas, disaster hit my upstart blogging adventure many times!

There was that time I panicked when I suddenly lost all my links, and my site counter numbers went zero for days, after I unknowingly followed a SEO tip I read somewhere saying I must simplify my url name into one which reflects my blog content, so that search engines will easily find me and rank me.
he stupid me, without realizing the implication of what I was going to do, simply followed the advice literally and changed my url into another customized, concise, and attractive name. I realized what a big fool I was only after a few days when I reviewed my site's performance at my 'feedburner page'. To my horror and surprise, no one has visited my site since I changed my url name! My readers disappeared! Their links to my site were no longer working.

My problem now was how I can keep my new url name and recover my already established links and increasing readership all at the same time. Being a newbie to blogging then, I was totally at a loss! And so I just reverted back to my old and long url name and shelved the idea of optimizing my site's visibility among search engines.

There was also this time when I got kicked out of entrecard 'for having copied content from other sites'! It turned out that the other sites they were referring to were my own mirror sites (Swirling Thoughts at blogspot and Big Daddy's Trunkated Ideas at wordpress). Again, being a stupid newbie that I was then, I always published my write ups in all three blogs at the same time! So, when copyscape finally caught up on me at wordpress, a report of a serious violation at entrecard was tagged to my profile and served as ground for my expulsion! I tried explaining the matter to entrecard to no avail. I could have easily corrected the matter then by deleting redundant posts in all three blogs but my standing applications with several paid to blog forums would be jeopardized if I start deleting some of my posts in any one of those blogs.

So, I just made myself believe that perhaps by writing good content I would still be able to keep my readership level afloat. It didn't! Finally, after I got my membership to the paid to blog forums approved, I hurried to do what I should have done before. I made deletions and additions to my posts in all three blogs to make each one unique. I also streamlined the content of each blog - Traders' Hub for online investing ideas only, Swirling Thoughts for my political views and opinions and my blogging experiences, and Trunkated Ideas for general topics that interest me.

After I've done all that, I went back to entrecard and re-applied. It was a good thing that they immediately reinstated both blogs. I truly felt bad about it when entrecard deleted my blogs since I knew my page visits will drop tremendously, which it did! I tried to console myself with the thought that it was stupid anyway to be part of a group where members visit each other's site just to drop ec cards without ever bothering to browse the blog's content. I also made myself think then that good content is enough to get people to visit your blog. I was totally wrong! How would people know your site exists at all in the first place? Oh yes, perhaps, they will, ... when someone stumbles on your site and happens to like it. But hey, they need to like it so much for them tol Digg it, or Stumble it, or Twit it! But nah, it can be a long ardous process for a newbie.

So, I thought of just eating up my own words and decided to go back to entrecard. I know that at least there will be ec members who will drop by the site to drop their ec's every once in a while! It will now be up to me how I shall take advantage of those few precious seconds of their fleeting visits to my site ... how my site wll attract them enough to stay a bit longer and browse the site for a few minutes more or bookmark it for later browsing!

I guess this is what entrecard is all about! And I guess that you guessed it right - the blog content and design are the keys to achieving this.

Anyway, no matter how late this jarring realization came to me, at the very least, my return to entrecard brought life back to my site! More bloggers are linking up with me now, my page visits has soared, and the most beautiful thing of all...I now have a page rank of 2.

So I'd like to thank all my Entrecard droppers, my MyBlogLog communities, and my Blog Catalog friends, without you, all these will not happen.

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