The Long and Winding Road

Discussion in 'Professional Trading' started by bobanab2, Apr 16, 2007.

  1. bobanab2


    About 8 months ago I decided to get into the trading game by taking my $5000 and opening up a Tradestation account. For about the same amount of time, I've been reading EliteTrader posts which have been very helpful.

    I quickly realized that any form of success in this business is accomplished via a slow and steady persistence. The main problem I see is the abundance of information out there and it's very easy to get overwhelmed and take your eye off the target (the target for me is like many; to quit my job and trade full time and possibly trade other people money.)

    I have a background in IT and enjoy Tradestation and have taken to strategy trading, plus they offer helpful webcast’s and tutorials for the beginner. I’ve lost a few hundred dollars over the last few months, but mostly to being over aggressive at times.

    I would really like to get the people’s views on the following topics/questions that I have:

    1. I have $5000 cash and $20,000 total (including margin) how much per month should I be trading?
    2. How many open positions are recommended to have open at one time (I try to stay away from stocks under $5)
    3. I ‘assume’ I should stick with and master trading stocks. But when should I explore Options, Futures, FX?
    4. Should I be hedging my bets at this point (ie. short positions)
    5. How do you pick the stocks you trade? Do you use fundamental analysis to pick the stocks and then use technical analysis to extract the profits from the trade?

    Thanks Very Much!
  2. tradethetrade

    tradethetrade Vendor

    1. Your capital is too small, you will never make a decent amount of money to live off but it's enough to get the ball rolling. If you choose the prop route, you might get better leverage and more money to trade not to mention you wouldn't be restricted by daytrading regulations.

    2. I daytrade so I try to have only one pos open at a time but there are very few exceptions.

    3. Master one game first, then move to others but most importantly find out what works for you and what fits your personality. Intraday, futures, stocks, options, swing, investing, auto-strategies, etc....

    4. Go long and short. The market is not gonna go up forever. Learn both.

    5. I pick stocks that move, nice daily charts, good liquidity and price points. Eg. NYSE, 1mil plus volume, price movements between low-high bigger than 1pt a day...$20-$80 a share ... are a few of my crits.

    Indulge yourself in books, the first time you read them, they won't make much sense so you've got to practice and re-read them once in a while.