There are four primary types of trading: scalping, day trading, swing trading, and position trading. The main difference between the styles is the length of time that you intend to be in a trade. It’s essential to be truthful with yourself, even if some of the attributes may not be favorable. Identifying the trading strategy that aligns with your personal characteristics increases your likelihood of success as a trader.
Scalping traders only hold onto their position for a few seconds and at most for a couple of minutes. Their main objective is to “scalp” a small number of pips as many times as they can during the busiest times of the day. Scalpers usually work on the seconds chart and anywhere on the 1 to 15 min chart. Scalping is working in a sharp focused, high stress and fast-paced environment where you are fighting for every single pip.
Day traders will hold their position anywhere from seconds to hours but will generally close their trades within the day. They start early in the day looking for suitable positions and then finish the day with either a profit or a loss. Day traders are also looking mostly at the minutes charts to monitor the short-term price action. It is fast however not as rapid as scalping. Day trading is suitable for those with the time to analyze the market at the beginning of the day and continuously monitor them throughout the day.
Swing trading, the trades are usually held for a few days maybe even a week or two. Swing traders don’t usually spend the entire day sitting in front of their computer screen monitoring the charts. They spend a couple of hours analyzing the charts and placing a few positions. Utilizing the hourly and daily charts swing traders set a stop loss and a take profit level allowing them to fill without the need for constant monitoring.
Position traders hold onto their trades for the longest some even up to years. It is quite like making an investment. For this style of trading, traders need to focus more on the long-term trends, and the fundamentals, rather than the short-term price movements. Because of the long holding time of the trade the stop losses are rather large which also would mean that your losses can be quite large but also means your profits can be huge. Position trading requires deep knowledge of the economic data that affects countries involved in your trade.
Deciding on which trading style fits your personality is crucial to becoming a profitable trader and achieving long term success. Successfully selecting a trading strategy involves being adaptable enough to recognize when it is not working for you, as well as the discipline to stick with it when it is not performing well. One of the prevalent errors made by novice traders is quickly switching between styles or systems at the first sign of difficulty. Continuously altering your approach will inevitably lead to consistent losses. Once you have found a strategy that suits you, remain committed to it, and in the long term, it will reward you with positive results.
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