The Trading Schedule
A quick look at how time effects the market, and what we should be monitoring at different time frames
600:AM - 9:30AM Premarket
Look for catalysts, high volume gap up and gap down set ups for longs. Also look for low volume gap up set ups for shorts. A lot of these gap ups that don't come on high volume fail at open. Check for dilution and other variables from within the SEC to better form a thesis on where the stock will head. Share structure will effect price movement. This is a great time to gauge where the stock audience is.
9:30AM - 10:30AM High Momentum Hour
At the open is when the morning spikes on high volume are happening. Also stocks that have gapped down or gapped up will now collide towards their true direction. Deciding which stock is the best stock to be in during this time is important. It's usually better not to rush into a trade at the open unless you already have a plan during the premarket.
10:30AM - 11:30AM Set Up Confirmation Hour
During this time, a lot of the stocks in play at the open will have confirmed which set up they are going to follow, and we should have already established the price points in which we'd like to see these stocks to re-determine our trading plan for them. Stocks that are still searching for a bottom, we'll keep them on watch throughout this hour, as well as stocks topping out, etc etc.
11:30AM - 1:30PM Lunch Hour
During this time is when the entire market loses trading volume, and price action becomes much less volatile. A lot of professionals choose not to waste their time looking at the markets during this time, although once in a while you may find a gem stock that releases a great PR during this time, and you're ahead of the entire crowd because you're on watch. In the long run, it may not be as worth your time to pick and choose for plays during lunch hours. Great time to determine which stocks you'll want to watch for power hour though.
1:30PM - 3:00PM Post Lunch Hour
By now, stocks are starting to regain momentum, and we are starting to get a clearer idea of which picks we'll want to look at for power hour. Volume is starting to see small spikes and we're now watching to see if any intra-day bottoms have formed and whether or not we multi-day action will continue from here into tomorrow.
3:00PM - 3:45PM Power Hour
During this time, a lot of momentum plays are starting to show themselves, look for VWAP crossovers, red to green moves, and also breaks on HOD as momentum continues into the next day as well. A lot of the time, we'll see stocks fading out on momentum that continued throughout the entire morning and lunch
3:45PM - 4:00PM Overnight Picks
From my experience, looking for an overnight pick is best done during the last 15 minutes of trading. Why is that? Because during this time, we're able to determine whether or not a stock is closing strong. Typically a stock that is closing strong on high volume, with the chart in line to see multi-day action, we're able to determine a good overnight pick that will have momentum continue into the next day