Registered: Feb 2002
01-13-06 08:22 PM
One of the most important things new traders learn is how to deal with the many emotions of trading, and how they will perform in the heat of battle. In addition, creating and testing your very own trading method or system is a process that can take a long time. Only trading a live money account will do the trick.
For that reason I believe some of the best training you can get for trading stocks, futures, or forex is to open an account with a small amount of money (small enough so it won't hurt to lose it all, but large enough to keep you interested) with a reputable broker who has no minimum account size and allows minimum size trades down to 1 unit, and that charges no commission. One such broker is Oanda. Jimrockford is correct that as a newbie you probably won't be sophisticated enough to detect if you are getting ripped off. But a beginning trader shouldn't be trying to make money in the first place. Learning the ins and outs of trading is a very valuable piece of education that has a price associated with it. By using a very small account with low leverage that "education" account should last a long time. The point of this exercise is to learn live trading skills without spending too much on this tuition, and Oanda has a fairly good track record. Look at the money on deposit as a sunk cost (like buying a golf club or fishing gear) and don't expect to see that money ever again. In this way you can learn the basics of trading with training wheels still attached, and determine if trading is for you.