Ranking the various financial instruments for difficulty in forecasting moves and trading the swings, stocks are the easiest, because they are the least efficient. The most efficient and liquid market is the FX market, and IMO, it is the hardest to predict. FX and futures seem more appealing, because there are only a few currencies/indexes/commodities needed to keep track of, there is a lot of volume and they are popular among traders. It is a lot "sexier" to trade ES or the euro compared to some no-name small cap stock that's trading 20 times normal volume because of some press release. In the stock universe, there are thousands of potential candidates to trade, and it seems like more work, and it is more work to search and filter out stocks to trade, but once they are filtered out, the moves are more predictable because there is a ton of retail money in stocks, especially popular small cap stocks where big money doesn't bother to swim in and the little fish are left to themselves to be eaten by bigger fish, i.e., sucessful retail traders. These markets are less efficient. Sharks, the sucessful fund managers and institutions don't even bother with most of these small cap plays that attract the daytraders due to the illiquidity. In the futures and FX universe, there is no such inefficiency, but there is one thing that big traders and institutions need, and that is liquidity, which is only available here, along with a few big cap stocks which usually just follow the market anyway. With options, the bid ask spread is a big bogie to overcome and options usually only exist for the bigger more liquid stocks anyway. Yet I see small time traders here trying to trade ES and the euro or yen and I have no idea why they even bother, because those are much more difficult markets to game than the daytrader flavor of the day small caps which trade on NASDAQ or AMEX which they can trade easily due to their small size. I'm sure most of my advice will fall on deaf ears by most small time traders who continue banging their head against the wall trying to make a few points per day on ES or some pips on the currency markets while having no edge using huge leverage to make up for the lack of volatility in those markets. My most valuable advice to these traders is simple: TRADE SMALL CAP STOCKS.