Stock Market Day Trading Tips You Can’t Afford to Ignore
All investments incur risks to some extent but armed with the right technology, analytical tools, and up-to-the-minute market information, day traders can limit their risk exposure and significantly improve the likelihood of financial gains.
Here are some of the tips that a day trader needs to pay particular attention to both before investing and during their stock market trading activities.
- Strategy – No one should expect to be an expert in every nuance of the stock market and all day trading techniques. Find the strategy that works best for you. Listening to “hot tips” from a friend, relative, or even news agencies is not a strategy. Types of investments you lean toward (large cap stocks, Forex, global markets, etc), timing you determine is effective for your trades, and tools to be used for analysis and decision making are strategic elements that you need to adhere to. When you find what works for you stick with it.
- Know when to bail out. No investment promises gains, and your trades will be no different. There will be wins, losses, and break-even events in your trades. When you identify the trades that will not be paying off for you, cut your losses before they become disasters. Your intent is of course for the gains to far outpace the downside, so when you become aware that your trade is going the wrong direction sell before a small loss becomes a significant financial tragedy. By the same token you must recognize the signals that indicate gains are likely to stabilize or even reverse direction so that you take your profits while you can. Set your target sell point in advance so that you don’t allow greed to make you hang on to an investment so long that it becomes a loss. Every trader, whether day trading or long-term investor has stories of the stocks that he should have gotten out of while he had the chance, but incurred higher losses due to hanging on too long.
- Realistic expectations and anxieties – If day trading or the stock market in general were a sure thing, everyone would be exuberantly day trading and getting wealthy beyond their wildest dreams. Keep your mind focused on making profitable trades based on research and your proven successes. Don’t allow anxiety and fears of loss prevent you from making the financial moves that make sense for you. The old saying “nothing ventured, nothing gained” is certainly applicable to day trading. All investments are at risk and subject to influences outside our control that may also be totally unexpected – even by the best minds in the business. Natural disasters, political unrest, CEO resignations, fraud charges, and many other circumstances can influence the value of stocks that you may have just purchased, with either positive or negative impact on your holdings. Understand that you have no control over such events. Roll with these fluctuations and move forward.
- Do your homework – financial analysts make a living doing detailed observations of many factors that impact the stock market throughout the day and over long periods of time. You should likewise perform a respectable level of due diligence for the trades you plan to make. Through your broker or online sites you can investigate the financial reports of publicly-traded companies to make decisions as to the level of confidence you have in the company’s performance and position in their market segment. Observing the continuing stock ticker information for real-time stock value is also critical to daytrader choices, both buying and selling.
- Keep your gains – This sounds like an obvious point, but many individuals who begin day trading hang on to stocks longer than they should, looking for the “big win”. Often that turns the gains into losses. Know your exit strategy as well as your purchase strategy, so that you get out while the profits are still there for you. Remember that you will sometimes be right on a buy order, and others will not turn out so rosy. Enjoy the wins, and learn from the losses.
- Patience and discipline – these go hand-in-hand with strategy, but they’re worth mentioning separately. Once you’ve determined what your price point is for buy orders stick to it. If nothing is available that meets your guidelines at any given point in time wait for the next opportunity, rather than altering your strategy. Be sure not to exceed the capital you determine is within your investment budget. Remember that investing on a “hunch” is not disciplined investing – it equates to gambling. Wait for the circumstances that fit your strategy and budget. Patience will pay off.
- Online broker selection – Regardless of your level of buy and sell activity the common factor is that day trading requires the use of a broker to actually exercise the order. Technology has introduced tremendous advantages for day traders through the use on online brokers. These online brokers are not equipped with the same tools and features. Each has their own particular offerings for your consideration. Decide what matters most to you before selecting the online broker for your investments. Such functions as analytical tools for clients, technical support, and mobile applications for trading may be just as critical to you as economical trade fees and low commissions.
Bloomberg Business Week elaborates further on some day trader tips, and Trading Academy offers advice particular to beginning day traders. Day Trader Bulletin likewise covers a wide variety of topics of interest to day traders of all levels.
Each of these tips deserves your consideration and evaluation for whether or not it applies to your investment strategy.
One of the most important tips for investors – particularly day traders – is to select an online broker that provides the tools, execution options, support, and reliability that can make you a profitable investor. SureTrader is a leading online broker for day trading that can provide you with advanced technical capabilities and support for your trades, including complete mobile options for traders on the go.
Disclaimer: SureTrader Blog is not intended for U.S. persons. Stock information is not to be viewed as buy or sell recommendations.