My parents bought me a few trading books for christmas. I skimmed through hundreds of pages, and most of the info didn't seem very helpful. Howerver this stood out. One book talked about knowing who you are trading with. When you are buying, someone is selling. I thought about this some, and i came to the conclusion that the best trades are when you are buying from someone who is willing to sell only because you are willing to pay a nickel or dime higher than the last price. Because thats where the market "is". In the case of the NYSE, you are buying from the specialist because he is entitled to provide liquidity. If he is the lone seller, and he makes you payup for your stock, you probably have a winner. Another person who you want to buy from would be a small retail short seller who will later have to cover when he realizes he is wrong, pushing the stock further in your favor. Or you want to be buying from another trader who is just "taking profits". You want your buying to be putting short stock into weak hands!! These weak hands will put money in your pocket later in day when they have to cover. People who you don't want to buy from are large sellers you have more size to go. When you buy from them, you are helping them out, and are putting long stock into your own weak hands!! I could have written this better, but hopefully some of you can relate and comment on this.