So you want to become a trader, but you do not know where to start… You believe that it’s difficult to start, because in order to enter the trading circles, you have to satisfy the high barrier-to-enter standards. You also find that barrier to be too high, since you do not have a decent starting capital to begin with. All of these assumptions may seem sensible, but you are mistaken if you think this way at the very beginning. Why? Well, today, it’s actually much easier to become a fully-fledged trader, even in the comfort of your own home. All you need are some good guidelines and advice that will help you put things in perspective, everything else are your choices and decisions. So the first noble thing to do, of course, is to educate yourself.
Today’s market is melded with ever-changing, ever-upgrading technology, which enables practically everyone to have a chance to trade, since we are all inter-connected by it. Anyone who is patient, ambitious and willing to learn can accomplish a lot. Yes, in some cases solid capital is required, but in most cases you need only a small (to no) amount of capital to get you going, thus verifying your commitment to this craft. All markets are linked together, so somewhere on the globe there is always open trading going on and many of those markets can be accessed without much difficulty. Everything is online these days.
A lot of people believe that being a professional trader, or gaining a chance to work in major trading institutions and investment banks requires connections, noteworthy educational background, large amounts of capital and years of service. This is true, but that should not discourage you to attempt to reach that level all the same. They all started something, somewhere from scratch, so why couldn’t you? The point is that even an average person, with or without experience, can enter the trading circles and generate wealth. You do not need a pedigree to become a great trader!
It’s always good to bear in mind these most important elements of trading. Consider them to be your pillars on which you can build your own empire! Firstly, try not to be a jack of all trades, but a master of none. Once you pick you trading method, try to stick with it, don’t just leap to another the moment you start encountering difficulties. Just like anything else, it takes a lot of trials, failures, endurance, wit and learning from your mistakes to become successful. Understand how the risk management works, because nothing is guaranteed in this business and you need to be able to estimate when to buy/sell and when to retreat. And finally, keep a sharp mind. We know this might sound like some Jedi advice, but do not give in to greed and fear, because if cannot control your negative thoughts and emotions , you are most definitely going to face significant losses as a trader.
This is the whole point of trading, right? Doing it by yourself for yourself. One of the ways you can practice that independence is by trading from the comfort of your own home, thus adapting your career to your personal life. On the other hand, day trading stocks from home is a ruthless and highly competitive arena, especially because the minimum equity required for a trader to be authorized as pattern day trader is $25,000. This is the amount that should be maintained at all times and once it drops below that point, you will not be able to trade until that minimum equity level is restored, either by cash deposit, or securities.
If the idea of trading from home does not seem like a good one, then working on a trading floor might. Proprietary trading firms are a system where traders are provided with a steady, or leveraged capital and the risk itself is partially managed by the firm. You’ll need discipline to find your place in this whole machine, but the benefits of working in trading firms are: free training, reduced fees and commissions, performance monitoring, easier access to capital, meeting colleagues to share experiences with, etc.
So what’s the bottom line? Trading is not an easy business. It’s hard to stay in for the long haul, but since information is power, a well educated trader is the best trader. Once you understand how to play the cards in your hand it all comes down to smart decisions and monitoring the market. Remember, everything is up to you. You alone are responsible for your success here.