Free Trading Journal

Post Title - Featured Image

Keeping a trading journal is essential if you want to progress as a day trader. You can’t improve what you don’t measure!

You can use our free trading journal to track Stocks, Futures, Options, Forex, and Crypto. In fact you can track all of them on the same spreadsheet!

Throughout my 20 years as a day trader, spreadsheets have been a key tool in my business. The benefit of them over a fancier 3rd party software is you can manipulate it however you need to.

Furthermore, as a new trader it’s important to keep your expenses down. Our trade journal provides you with all of the statistical calculations you’re going to need to properly analyze your trades.

The data inputs you track in our journal are the same general inputs you will need should you decide to transfer your trades to another journal down the road.

Free Trading Journal (Excel Download & Google Sheets)

Trading Journal Statistics Page with Charts of P&L, MFE, and MAE

You can download the Excel Trading Journal or access the online version (Google Sheets), by following these steps:

  1. If you’re not already a JT Insider, register here. It’s free.
  2. You will receive a welcome email titled: Welcome to JT Insider! [Insider Tools Link]. The email contains the link to the JT Insider Downloads page.
  3. Download the Excel file titled “Trade Journal” or use the online version via Google Sheets which is in the folder as well. It’s free to sign up for a Google Account if you don’t have one already.
  4. See instructions on how to use the trading journal below.

Free Trading Journal (Instructions)

Excel & Google Sheets Trading Journal (Instructions & Download)

The journal is very easy to use once you understand a few of the definitions and features. These inputs are optional depending on what you want to track.

1. Data Definitions

The following data inputs are located on the Journal Tab.

Screenshot of trading journal Column B (Multiplier)

MULTIPLIER (Column B)

The Multiplier is specific to the instrument you’re trading and is used by the spreadsheet to calculate your P&L.

Use the proper value below depending on the instrument you’re trading.

Future Contracts
This will be the value of a 1 point move on 1 contract.
Examples:
eMini S&P 500: $50
eMicro S&P 500: $5
eMini Nasdaq 100: $20
eMicro Nasdaq 100: $2

Stocks
The value will always be 1.

Forex
Face Value of the Contract
Examples:
EURUSD Standard Lot: $100,000
EURUSD Mini Lot: $10,000
EURUSD Micro Lot: $1,000

Note: You can double check you’re using the correct multiplier by confirming your P&L is accurate.

High Price & Low Price (Columns M&N)

The High Price and Low Price inputs are use for calculating MFE & MAE.

High Price = The highest price reached while you were in the position.
Low Price = The lowest price reached while you were in the position.

Google Sheet Graphs Displaying MFE & MAE

Maximum Favorable Excursion (MFE) marks the highest price during a long trade and the lowest price during a short trade.

The MFE measurement can be used to analyze the efficiency of your exits.

You potentially can improve your strategy by analyzing MFE and determining if you should be more or less conservative with your take profit.

Remember that anytime you make and adjustment to a strategy it’s a give take relationship. If you tighten your take profits your win rate will go up but your expectancy is going to drop. So make sure to evaluate both sides.

Maximum Adverse Excursion (MAE) marks the lowest price during a long trade and the highest price during a short trade.

The MAE measurement can be used to analyze the efficiency of your stop placement.

Once again you can looking to improve your strategy by analyzing MAE to determine if you should be more or less conservative with your stops.

If for some reason you’re not interested in tracking MFE/MAE, you can simply hide columns M&N.

Simply highlight the columns and right click>Hide columns, as seen below.

Example of Hiding Columns in Google Sheets

2. Changing Strategy Names

To change the strategy names to reflect the strategies you trade you will need to unhide the formulas. Head over to Column P and click on the black arrow in the upper right of the cell.

Arrow Designating How to Unlock Hidden Cells in the Trading Journal

This will unlock all of the formulas as seen below. Now you can change the names of the strategies by editing the labels in column Q.

Example of Exposing Formula Columns in Trading Journal to Change Strategy Names

Once you’re done I would hide these columns again so you don’t accidentally change a formula. Simply highlight the columns and right click>Hide columns, as seen below.

Example of Hiding Columns in the Trading Journal

3. Linking Trade Photos

I find it beneficial to link the trade photos to the journal so they’re easily accessible.

To do this start by creating a folder in Google Drive where you will store your photos.

After storing your trade photos, right click on the photo and choose get link and then copy the link as seen below.

Trade Photo Hyperlink

Next head back to your journal and highlight the corresponding trade photo number and hit the insert link button as seen below.

Displaying How To Link Trading Photos to Spreadsheet

4. Editing Formulas

You are free to edit any formulas that you wish but you may end up breaking a formula in the spreadsheet if you don’t know what you’re doing. If you accidentally screw something up you can always just download or duplicate the original journal again.

There are two additional hidden sheets you will have to unhide by going to View>Hidden Sheets.

Conclusion

Tracking your trades in a trading journal will allow you to analyze and improve your performance.

I’ve been trading a very long time and I still prefer a traditional spreadsheet journal over other software or third party journals. You’re always going to have different needs, and the ability to manipulate the raw data how you want is very beneficial.

If you’re not familiar with Excel or Google Sheets, a quick google search will get you the answer your seeking. They are extremely well documented.

I hope you enjoy our free trading journal! If you have a question or a request for the spreadsheets please leave a comment below.

Share this post:

Adam

Popular On Jumpstart Right Now >>>

Leave a comment below...

Share this post:

Popular On Jumpstart Right Now >>>

Post Title - Featured Image
Post Title - Featured Image
Post Title - Featured Image

Leave a comment below...

30 Comments

    1. When I first begin backtesting something new I like to keep it pretty basic until I’ve recorded 50 – 100 trades. At that point if it looks like it has potential I will go back through those trades and track a lot more variables. Simply put, it’s just less time consuming until I know a strategy has potential.

  1. hey thank you soo much loving this. it’s been a lot of help to track these data, i’m still a paper pen journal writer but this excel helps me to track a lot of other information without manual calculation. thanks buddy

  2. Hi Adam,

    If you sell partly of a trade, say 25% after a move, then 50% after a couple of days and rest like a few more days later, how do you keep track in the journal?

    Thank you for an awesome journal.

    1. Thanks for the comment! You would simply have to calculate the average exit price. If you sell half at 9.50 and half at 10.00 your exit price would have been 9.75. For exit day just use the final date you exit.

  3. I was trying to create a journal myself, did a google search and found your journal. This is much more than I could ever do with all the statistics and details, which is super helpful. Thanks for being generous to share this for free. Most websites, look for your money right away or free stuff is sub-par. Again thanks much.
    (Sujith)

  4. Thank you for being so generous as to provide a free journal! It is really appreciated. However, when I open the download it says there is an error. It will open but the Net P&L and Gross P&L show a formula error.
    =IFERROR(IF(C4=”Long”,((J4-H4)*B4*G4)-O4,IF(C4=”Short”,((H4-J4)*B4*G4)-O4,””)),”Symbol not found”)
    Am I doing something wrong? Thanks again for all you do to help us newbies.

    1. Hi Kim, thanks for the comment. I can’t really troubleshoot without seeing the file. I just double checked and it’s working for me. Possibly a version issue. Best option is to use the Google Sheets version.

  5. Hey Adam, I have a discord group with some other traders. I’ve been looking for a solid trading journal that I can use in excel or google sheets for free and came across this one and it looks great!

    I’m sure your tracking sheet is protected under copyright, being IP, but I was curious if I would be able to share this with my fellow traders?

  6. Hey thank you for this! One thing though, The “High Price” is throwing an error on a short when the price is below the entry price. Directly copied your document and changed the value of your last example to $1.01, and you get the same error I’m getting.

    1. Hi Michael, it’s throwing an error for you because on a short position the high price (highest price while you were in the position) could never be lower than the entry price (equal yes).

  7. Hi Adam,

    what should I input into the Multiplier column if I’m trading Forex? I’ve read the description above, but when I input 100,000, or 10,000 the numbers don’t make sense.

    Also, thank you for sharing this useful trading journal, really appreciate it.

    1. Hi Isaac, I’m guessing you’re trading micro’s (why numbers don’t make sense), which if that’s the case you need to be using 1,000 for the multiplier.

  8. I’m a little confuse on how to input the numbers and if I trade sport metals like xauusd what should input into the multiplier

  9. I have a question about the multiplier. Why does the example show that a Standard lot (Forex) is $100,000 instead of 100,000 lots? Also, is there a way to make the stop price pips instead of an actual price? Same for the entry, exit, highest price, and lowest price? Is the MFE and MAE really that important, and should I do it as a beginner trader?

    Thank you so much for this trading journal and backtesting sheet. I have been looking everywhere for one, and it is so nice that someone gives a quality journal for free. Thank you so much again.

    1. Essentially it’s 100,000 units of the base currency. I tried to make the spreadsheet work for multiple asset classes… MFE and MAE are very important once you get into Sim trading. Tracking and analyzing it will help you improve your trade management.

      Thanks for the comment!

  10. Dear Adam,

    Thank your help.
    Trading the mini Es500, what should I do if I want to trade 2 lots or 4 lots…

    Were do I put them in account

  11. Hi Adam,
    What a fantastic trading Journal !! Thank you for your kindness and efforts.
    A journal I would love to see you create would be for binary options as this is what I trade.
    I have been looking for a trading journal to track my progress for a while now but there are very few around. I have made a very basic one but don’t know enough about excel to make graphs to track everything like in this trading journal. Hopefully one day I will find one you have made 🙂

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *