Trading Record
October, 2008
Trading Account
This was a record month in my trading account.  I closed a total of $23,860 in profits on 130 total trades.  Yes, I know that's a lot of trades, but the market had no direction in October, so holding overnight was very unsafe.
The Detailed trade statistics for 2008 can be seen here, but the highlights for this month are that I had a Profitable Trade Percentage of 81.5%.  This means that better than 4 out of every 5 trades were profitable.  The profit factor was also a record for me at 4.93 ($29,933 in total profits vs. $6,073 in losses).
The equity curve line, below, is a running total of all closed positions (profit and loss) this year.  Green dots are new peaks. 
Long-Term Account
This month was very rough for a lot of traders and investors.  Unfortunately, my long-term account also fell victim to the carnage, as the S&P 500 dropped a total of 16.5% in October.  At it's lowest point, it was down 27.6%, on 10/27.  I didn't sell any positions for a loss, but 3 option trades I put on in August and September expired worthless this month.  These were commodity names that dropped about 50% on average. 
All stocks and ETFs in my portfolio are down from last month, but I added to them in October.  On the plus side, I balanced out those losses with good, short-term trades in AAPL and GOOG.  All told, I lost about $4,600 in the IRA.  Not bad considering how much worse it could have been.  While I normally trade options in both accounts, I started using only stocks and ETFs in October because premiums were too high, and the length of the downdraft was impossible to predict.  Stocks/ETFs can be held indefinitely, while options expire.
Combined Performance
Thanks to the Trading account, I was able to continue the string of continuous monthly profits which started in January.