Expected profit per trade per share for intraday retail stock traders

Discussion in 'Automated Trading' started by clearinghouse, Jan 22, 2011.

  1. Some Questions:

    1) For you guys who are successful retail traders trading on something like IB or TradeStation, what's the average profit per trade that your trades get? I'm more interested in stock traders, but I wouldn't mind hearing from guys who trade futures either.

    2) How long does your typical strategy last before it bites the dust?

    3) How expensive are the stocks you trade? $10 stocks, $50 stocks? GOOG?

    I'm strictly interested in the profit per trade of the guy who is successfully trading out of his home, self-employed, and not managing anyone else's money. How many of you guys are out there? Are you a dying breed?


    1) 2 answers here: (1) day trades I typically go for a nickel to a dime profit per trade (2) swing trades I obviously look for larger profits

    2) I've been trading as my only income for 15 years this April and have used a number of methods. But the approach I've used the last 7-8 years is to trade the same stocks over and over since I know the typical intra-day trading range. I also tend to trade stocks with a higher beta.

    3) I typically trade stocks under $25 and often trade stocks under $10

    I go for singles and doubles and don't try for home runs and I think it's my focus on preserving capital and risk management that has allowed me to do this for 15 years.

    I do manage $$ for 2 other people but I do it at no charge, so no financial benefit for me. I typically buy the same stocks in their accounts as mine scaled to reflect the respective amount of $$$ in each account.

    Edit: Just noticed this is under "Automated Trading" -- my trading is NOT automated.
  3. Automated or not, very nicely done. Thanks for answering.
  4. pdw24


    This was a great question and answer. I was wondering what you max stop loss is as well as bid/ask spread. I have been using a scanner and while i have been able to get great success with a few screens, the bid ask spread as well as the stop loss that I enter are not always true. Sometimes the stock may have a 1 min candle that would be .15-.2 of a loss, and when you are only trading for .15-.2 gains, this is nerve racking. My stop loss is generally .1, but 50% of the time it would exit the trade before becoming profitable. The screen i am using has a 75% success ratio, but when I look at the trade my stop loss would have been taken out. Can you please let me know what your max is for stop loss, thanks
  5. NoDoji


    The nice thing about trading a very limited number of instruments is you can get to know them well. With careful study you define high probability patterns, "safe" levels at which to place protective stops, positive reward:risk ratios, and signals for when to let your winners run. You have key S/R levels in your head, and can quickly note minor levels and keep them in front of you.

    When I trade futures (6E, CL, and ES), my minimum profit target on a trade is $200/contract and my maximum protective stop is $150/contract.

    When I trade AAPL stock, my minimum reward:risk ratio is 2:1. My protective stops have varied between .30 and .80., but with AAPL now in the mid 300's, most trades lean toward the .80 end of it.