How to Calculate Your Position Size in 1 Second

            We’ve all been there at one point: “Let’s see entry price, stop price, subtract the two... equals umm.. Now divide that from my max loss per trade and.. there goes my entry. Time to chase.”

            The problem is, when you’re looking at fast paced 1 minute candles it’s virtually impossible to calculate this instantaneously. I’m sure that even for those with perfect SAT math scores (cough, cough) it can be extremely irritating, taking away valuable emotional stability.

            So you need to use a calculator, better yet an Excel spreadsheet. And without further ado let me introduce you to your new best friend, VLOOKUP! VLOOKUP is one of Excel’s many mathematical functions that will return a value at the speed of light. Suppose you have some kind of a table, like this:

Table 1. Pos. Size Guide

            The VLOOKUP function will search through the first column and look for any value you ask it to. When you press enter, it will instantly return the number to its right. So, if you input a value of $0.50 it will return a value of 200, your number of shares.

            Combine that with a simple risk calculator and it can act as a powerful tool to calculate your size in 1 second. You might set yourself up with something like this:

Figure 1. Excel Spreadsheet example. Note: Cells D2 and F2 show the formulas that must be entered.

Here's how to get started:

  1. Type in Entry Price and Exit Price
  2. Calculate the Risk
  3. Retype the risk in the adjacent cell, (VLOOKUP requires you to retype it)
  4. : Type in the VLOOKUP formula with the correct parameters.

Here's what the parameters actually mean:

            And there you have it! Using the VLOOKUP function you can calculate your position size in 1 second! Ok, fine maybe 2 or 3. Definitely less than 5.