Is there any more to it than experience and common sense in trying to figure the day's volume early in the day? When your "price buy" is hit I look for "volume buy". Who the hell knows if the percent of completed market day volume will correlate to an equal percent of total days volume? It seems to me that the inability to judge volume from one minute to the next is why you have to do homework on the stock which you obviously do. I check the volume and price activity of the sector when I've been able to collect samplings of that particular sector which I have recently attempted to do. That seems to help a lot on the obviously sector oriented stocks like oil, financials, dot coms etc. Any suggestions? (April 22, 2003)

  There is no way of knowing for sure regarding actual day-end volume totals as volume surges in the first hour and then in the last hour. In many instances when a stock breaks out over resistance it is accompanied by a surge of volume that puts it well down the road to the target volume. Those are the easy ones. Many times volume is solid but not near the target. In those instances if the move is clearly solid, i.e., not jumping back and forth, wandering in nervous trade, we will take a partial position early and then see where volume is later in the session. If it is solid we can complete the buy toward the close. We can even complete it at a later session when the stock gives us another entry point. In any event we usually wait and let the stock work through the morning chop before moving in unless there are other circumstances at play such as a stock in a really great pattern than we want when it makes its first move. In this market we will often wait until the last hour of the session to see how our stocks are closing; that gives us a much better view of price and volume. As the rally has strengthened we have moved into stocks a bit quicker, but if in doubt we will pass. We did that on a couple today that maybe we should have bought, but we decided to wait. Sometimes we miss a really good mover, but in this market we have seen too many times low volume upside moves that are pushed violently down; this market is still quite unforgiving.


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