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EMOTIONAL TRADING

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EMOTIONAL TRADING Powered By Docstoc
					Presented by Daniel Toriola
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EMOTIONAL TRADING By Al Thomas

EMOTIONAL TRADING by Al Thomas

THE ALCHEMIST by AL THOMAS EMOTIONAL TRADING The single most expensive stock market trades are those made with emotions, but, of course, you are not an emotional trader are you? Before you bought that stock, mutual fund or Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) you did your research to be sure that what you were buying would return a good profit over the long haul. You bought it and over time you look at it less and less. Ask yourself: when you plunked down your hard earned money did you have any idea where you would sell it or where you might exit the trade should the stock go down instead of up? And suppose it has gone up have you made any plans to protect those profits? There were many geniuses in 1999 who bought a tech stock at $20 and saw it run to $200 only to come back down to $2. Those who had an exit strategy probably sold out as it turned over and dropped like a rock. They kept most of their profits as well as their original investment. What kept those BuyNholders in? It was emotion. They fell in love with the stock because they “knew” it was worth more and would “come back up”.Investing is not an “I hope, I hope” business, but it is a business. Never become emotionally attached to anything you buy. If you were in the buggy whip business in 1900 and saw the automobile putting the horse out to pasture you easily knew it was time to sell out. That also applies to any investment you make in the stock market. Once each month you should be checking to see if your various stocks are advancing as planned. Forget all those pretty research reports your broker sent you. Burn them. Now you must not care anything about that company. What you care about now is your money. As long as the stock price is advancing you may continue your love affair, but when it starts down it is time for a divorce. Time to leave before the damage gets worse. This is where emotion becomes expensive. If you just bought it your ties are strong and you know if you sell you will have a loss. Never fall for that old broker’s adage that you don’t have a loss until you
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sell. Anyone who believes that will be eating cat food at retirement. When you bought that new car you knew as soon as you drove it off the lot it would be worth 20% less than you paid for it. Twenty percent is a lot and more than most folks should be willing to risk when investing. Forget “the long haul” as you don’t want to take the 40% losses that many investors did in 2000. Usually a good rule of thumb is 10%. When you drive that stock off the exchange floor your risk should be limited. You decide how much you are willing to lose if it goes down instead of up and as it goes up carry that risk percentage along to lock in your profit. If you do sell never look back. Fagedaboudit! In 80% of those sales when you do look back six months later you will see you are way ahead in the money game. Do not allow an emotional attachment to keep you in any stock or fund. It will drain you both mentally and financially.

F*R*E*E investment letter www.mutualfundmagic.comAuthor of best seller "IF IT DOESN'T GO UP,DON'T BUY IT!" Never lose money in the market. Copyright 2004 Albert W. Thomas All rights reserved.Former 17-year exchange member, floor trader and brokerage company owner

Become Real Help for emotional, mental and spiritual pain and suffering. Page 2

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Incorporating Soft Elements Into Your Forex Trading Strategy By Andrew Shiveley

To veteran forex traders, the term 'strategy' is often synonymous with 'trading tools,' meaning any combination of charts, indicators, and oscillators that will help them to make judgment calls on their trading decisions. Though when you are caught up in trading, it is very easy to become so focused on the technical aspect and trying to gain an edge with the latest indicator that you forget to focus on the mental aspect of trading. In a sense, a trader will fall into the trap of putting to much of their focus outside of themselves and will actually forget that *they* are the ones making all of the choices and decisions. This mental aspect of forex trading incorporates what we call the 'soft elements' of a forex trading strategy, and the two main parts to focus on are psychology and money management. This is as opposed to the 'hard elements' of your trading strategy, which would be the type of charts, indicators, and oscillators you are using that make up the technical portion of your trading strategy. Money management and trading psychology are inextricably related, and one cannot be successful without the other. Trading psychology mainly encompasses focusing on your emotions while you are trading and making sure that emotions such as fear or greed do not make you deviate from the rules of your trading strategy. You will feel all kinds of different emotions during your forex trading (it can be rather like an emotional roller coaster), but the two emotions that can be the most devastating are fear and greed. Trading psychology means that you learn to tame these emotions as they pop up, and coming to terms with the fact that dealing with large sums of money can be a very emotional experience. Money management is an offshoot of forex trading psychology, but it is probably the most important soft or mental element of your strategy. A simple definition of money management would be 'acting in such a way to maximize gains and minimize losses.' One of the most important rules of proper money management is to always trade with the same number of lots every time you receive a buy or sell signal. Another rule is to never forget to enter a stop loss order, and always go for the same profit/loss ratio. A common proportion that many forex traders follow is 1.5/1 or 2/1, meaning that they will always enter a trade hoping to get 1.5 or 2 times the amount of pips that they are willing to risk (and this usually includes the spread). As you should see, money management can be difficult or even impossible to implement if you ignore trading psychology, because you must already have emotional stability if you are going to focus on maximizing gains and minimizing losses. If you get fearful every time the market turns against you and rush to exit the trade before it has time to turn around in your favor, you will short circuit the power of your trading strategy. If you ignore the soft elements of your forex trading strategy, it really doesn't matter how powerful your combination or indicators and oscillators is because you will always fall short when it comes to making an emotional judgment call.

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There is no quick fix to creating a profitable forex trading strategy; including all of the essential technical and mental aspects is the key to success.

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Patricia Johnson Patricia Johnson Management Consultant
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