A beginner’s guide to trading

In the past investing and trading were things done pretty much solely by experts within the finance field and business moguls. Now it is actually possible for anyone with any sort of financial background, a decent amount of capital and internet access to become a trader and online trading is growing in popularity.


New traders will often enter the market with expectations of making large sums of money and they will quickly realise that trading isn’t a quick and easy way to get rich and often make many mistakes when starting out. It is very important to try and avoid making major mistakes, especially at the beginning as they could quite easily result in your whole bank getting wiped out. This is exactly why most respected trading platforms will have a section which covers the basics, so for example City Index explains CFD trading, forex and spread betting and even has Demo accounts to provide practical experience.


Some very important mistakes to avoid include not knowing when to stop, trading without enough preparation and training, failing to keep sufficient records of trades, not calculating the risk reward ratio correctly and believing you will see easy, large profits very quickly. It is also very important to not get too emotionally attached when trading, as this can result in reckless decisions being made.


There are a few things that can be done to make sure the risks of trading are kept to a minimum. Investing in the best equipment you can afford is vitally important and it is advisable to acquire a fast computer, stable internet connection and also the correct trading tools and platforms. It is also very wise to set yourself a stop-loss order to minimise the loss within each trade and therefore help to preserve capital. You can do this by setting a price with a broker in order to sell when a set price is reached, therefore limiting losses if the trade doesn’t go as hoped.


When starting out it would be wise to start off with small bets, until you feel totally comfortable with trading. It is also worth looking at trading on a margin, which means you are able to pay less than the cost of a full trade and then you will be able to enter into larger positions. This will mean you don’t need to bet money you can’t afford to lose that isn’t yours.


If you are going to start trading online, you need to view it as your own business and treat it as such. It is important to have a plan which sets out what you will trade, how you will trade and how much you would like to make and how much time you are willing to devote to do so. It is also very important to fully test everything listed in your plan on both historical data and a live market and then measured at regular intervals. This will help you to determine the style of trading you wish to take on, by figuring out which is best suited to the time you have available, your tolerance to risk and your expertise.

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