Home > Lessons from the trading floor > day trading: taking whats available

day trading: taking whats available

It would be great if every day was a “buy at the low of the day and sell at the high 6.5 hours later or sell short at the high and cover near the low” type of day. Unfortunately that is just not reality. The market as a whole has been basically in a trading range since the beginning of the year (yes I know you can point to one or two commodity or oil related sectors).

As a trader who actually earns a living from the markets you should know if you are trading for short term moves or waiting patiently for an obvious trend to develop where you can build a position and hold it for a few hours or days. It is difficult to switch from one to the other on the fly. You can’t be a power hitter and a singles hitter, it doesn’t work that way.

However if the trend or better put, lack of trend is persistent over a prolonged period of time you may have to adjust to taking what the market is offering. During a trending evironment you should be trading less shares expecting volatility which means you will need to give your stocks some room to breath for the “bigger move.”

During a range bound environment you should be trading more shares per trade for a smaller move with very well defined stop loss areas, there will be no working an order. This may not suit your personality to trade these smaller moves, thats fine but remember you will need to be very patient waiting for a trend. You can take what the market is giving or sit back and wait for the conditions to match your trading plan.

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