1. Choose a trading style that suits your personality and time schedule
If you work full time, a swing trading style, may suit you better. This is where you review the charts in the evenings to identify trades and leave them open for a couple of days.
You are looking to do 3-5 trades a week. It helps if you have a more patient and relaxed personality type to be comfortable with this style of trading.
A second style called, day trading, requires more screen time. You would be opening and closing your trades on the same day. If you have some time in the mornings (around 8.00am GMT) you could potentially do some trading here also.
This style is more suited to a more active personality type as you could be opening 3-5 trades a day depending on market conditions.
2. Learn technical analysis
You must nail the basics on what is happening on the charts in whatever instrument you plan to trade, be it currencies, stock markets, oil or gold as your foundation.
Being able to recognise a trending or ranging market, for example, or what tools work best to help identify where the price may go next is paramount to your trading success.
This is what technical analysis is, and anyone can learn it, with the right direction, education and support.
3. Understand how economic and political news impacts the markets
Get a handle on what moves the markets. Big economic news in the USA such as employment numbers, for example, will move the dollar.
If you plan to trade currencies, find out what is going on both politically and economically in those countries.
Keep up to date on news in both the Euro Zone and the USA. This will help in your decision-making process when used in conjunction with technical analysis.
4. Find one strategy and stick to it
Don’t jump from system to system. Find a trading strategy that helps you identify good buying or selling opportunities and stick to it.
As you get more experience you can adapt your existing strategy and add new ones.
5. Trade the trend
No matter what you plan on trading, if the price is going up, it’s good to be a buyer, and if the price is going down, it’s good to be a seller.
By following the trend, no matter what instrument you are trading, you will be giving yourself that best opportunity for success.
As a part-time trader focusing on the daily timeframes is a good idea to help you identify these trending markets.
6. Establish a “Set and Forget” approach and walk away
What do I mean? Well basically you open a position (either buy or sell) you then put in a stop loss (to minimize your risk) and a profit take (if the price reaches this it will automatically close you trade) and you walk away from the screens.
This will help you avoid watching the screens and likely interfere with your open trade. Whether it works out for you or not you can come back the next day if you find a good trade.
7. Stick to a set of trading rules
A set of rules covering the what, the when and the how you trade are elements of a trading plan that you will need to set up.
Trading rules will keep you on the straight and narrow and help you to reach your trading goals faster.
8. Identify where you may be going wrong
When you start out in trading it goes without saying you will make a few mistakes along the way. That’s ok, it’s normal. Identify what they are, be it taking too much risk or overtrading and eliminate them.
9. Have patience and discipline
Patience and disciple are the two most important characteristics in trading that will help you survive and thrive in the game.
Wait for the best trading opportunities to come to you rather than chasing after trades that offer a low probability of working out in your favour.
There are always good opportunities in the markets, the skill is being able to identify them when they come along.
10. Get in the Game
Trading offers the opportunity to generate a second income for a lifetime. If you have an itch about trading that needs to be scratched, get in the game and give it a go.
You can trade small positions to reduce your risk in the early days and increase your trade sizes as you build up your confidence and trading experience.
CM Trading are here to help you on your trading journey. Get access to our 6-part online “Make me a Trader’’ Program which covers all you need to know to help you get started.