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More on Impulsive Trading

When your money is on the line, it's difficult to remain calm, rational, and in complete control. What happens if you lose? How will you recover? It's natural to become consumed with self-doubt and abandon your trading plan, or act irrationally in the midst of the chaotic market action. But winning traders control their impulses. They execute a trading strategy effortlessly and flawlessly, even un...

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False Consensus Part 1

​Traders and investors try to understand their world. They make hypotheses and test them. Rather than conducting formal experiments, however, they use their everyday experience to test out theories they have about the markets. We study the markets and try to develop our own personal theories about how the markets work. Because we don't conduct formal experiments, we may fall prey to psychological ...

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​If only humans were more like machines. In theory, the ultimate trader would act like a robot, analyzing market data with unfailing accuracy, devising a trading plan, and executing it without flaw. But does trading work that way? Trading is more art than science. Without an intuitive grasp of the markets, it's difficult to successfully trade the markets using short-term trading strategies. Humans...

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Be Aware

​Beginning traders may make trade after trade and watch their account balance dwindle with each trade. They may feel unintelligent and thoughtless and think, "Why am I making so many losing trades?" At times they may wonder if they are thoroughly incompetent. But it's all a matter of perspective. If you aren't trading profitably, it isn't because you can't. It isn't because you have bad luck. It i...

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Graceful Trading

​Whether you're a novice or seasoned trader, there are days when you face setback after setback: Adverse events go against you. You make a trading error. You misread the markets. The possible setbacks can be endless, and it hurts a little to watch your account balance take a hit when one of them catches you off guard. But whatever roadblocks get in your way, you have to take them in stride. How ca...

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​It would be wonderful if there were a foolproof and valid instruction manual for how to trade the markets profitably, a cookbook of sorts where you merely follow the steps and you are successful. For decades, traders have tried to find recipes for financial success. For some, the Holy Grail comes from the latest trading guru. For others, it may be a new software program. As appealing as a trading...

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A Flash of Light

It has often been said that trading is not rocket science. I believe that. You don't need to be as brilliant as a rocket scientist to trade the markets profitably. I know I'm not that bright. That said, there are moments when a trader has a brilliant insight and takes home huge profits because of it. (I don't know any rocket scientists, but I'll bet that a rocket scientist isn't brilliant every wa...

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Trading Preparations

Are you ready to tackle the markets at any time? Bring it on, right? It would be ideal if we were ready to trade at any given moment, but the human mind has its limits. You don't have an endless supply of energy. After a marathon stretch of trading, for example, you may not be able to tackle the markets in earnest. You may not be able to concentrate fully. You may be easily distracted, and while y...

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Trading Discipline

  Trading discipline exists in two distinct parts: ·         Before your order is filled. ·         After your order is filled. Let’s look at each of these categories, because both are tremendously important. Trading Discipline Before Your Order Is Filled: Here we are talking about all the things you do as a trade...

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"Once I’ve achieved success as a trader, then what? I’ve heard that after a while trading can become boring."

Question from a subscriber: "Once I’ve achieved success as a trader, then what? I’ve heard that after a while trading can become boring." I know you would all like to have that problem, but I can vouch for its being true. I always have to find new ways to trade or I do become bored. However, I have never run out of ways to trade that remain exciting, at least for a fairly long time. After the obje...

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Derivative transactions, including futures, are complex and carry a high degree of risk. They are intended for sophisticated investors and are not suitable for everyone. There are numerous other factors related to the markets in general or to the implementation of any specific trading program which cannot be fully accounted for in the preparation of hypothetical performance results, and all of which can adversely affect actual trading results. For more information, see the Risk Disclosure Statement for Futures and Options.