The first thing to learn is that posting on a message board is the LAST way to get advice, as all the idiot replies prove. The advice from sle is the only one to make any sense... or have any authority behind it. It takes at least a year of paper trading to get in a position where you are not losing money consistently. 99.% of people who start out with your goal trading live lose their stake within the first year...or sooner. There really is no free lunch. If there were everybody would instantly eat it.