By ELLIOT CHANG Some people say swing trading needs Ivy League finance graduates, but you don’t have to be one! Familiarize the
terms, take a course, consult a licensed stock advisor, and you’re ready to go. Here, you’ll learn most of what you need for the first step.
Swing trading is fundamental trading with positions held for longer than a day.
For reference: day trading involves making multiple trades in a single day, while swing trading involves thorough technical analysis. Day trading involves an independent broker without corporate backing with flexible schedules. These traders compete with high-frequency traders for advantages. Meanwhile, swing trading spans from a few days to a few weeks. It demands much less time than day trading, which requires traders to quit their day jobs to find trading opportunities. While both jobs are better with experience in technical analysis, only a swing trader requires formal education on finance. Longer timeframes for keeping trades open result in higher profits with maximum leverage at double a person’s capital. However, keeping it open can also lead to more significant losses.
How can you swing?
In this article, you’re going to hear a lot of the word trend and its variety. A trend is the direction of an asset’s price, either upwards or downwards. Trading requires skill to decipher when trends increase or decrease. This method entails predicting trends, which are the general direction of a particular asset. Trendlines going upward or downward identify trends. As the name suggests, an upward slope means there’s an uptrend, while the opposite means there’s a downtrend. Expecting assets to uptrend means you’re bullish on them. Think of a bull that strikes upwards with its horns, with you as the bull itself.
Meanwhile, if you expect assets to trend downwards, it means you’re bearish. Bears strike downward with its paws. Whether you’re bullish or bearish will determine how you’ll buy and sell trades. Going long is just another way to say you’re buying stock. If you purchase it, you can sell it for a higher value later to reap a profit. If you go long, it describes having a bullish attitude towards an asset. The terms are interchangeable, although going long has more to do with the action than the opinion.
On the opposite end, shorting shows that a trader expects stocks to downtrend so they can sell it for a lower price later. This method entails selling first, anticipating a lower price, then for purchase in lower values. In the same way, going long means you’re bullish, shorting means you’re bearish towards an asset.
So, Bullish or Bearish?
For more straightforward predictions, analyzing for swing trading should be held at times when markets are going nowhere. This way, you can use either technical or fundamental analysis, although fundamentals are more often for long-term investments like swing trading.
Fundamental analysis studies financial statements, management processes, and industries that determine an asset’s intrinsic value. Stock screeners help day traders to filter stocks based on specific criteria, especially in technical analysis. Some quit their day jobs to use it in hopes of buying higher highs and higher lows quicker.
No Chart for the Long Run
However, no chart can determine a company’s actions in the long run. Fundamental analysis requires other kinds of research like industry analysis, economic conditions, and future profitability.
Swing traders can use a baseline, which is a number to measure how successful a business or an asset is. Companies use benchmarks like how many sales a product reached in a certain amount of time. You can use a baseline to measure where the asset is going. Swing traders, then, use risk/reward comparisons to minimize losses for their investments. Calculate the ratio by how much you’re willing to lose vs. how much you want to make, whether the asset’s price reaches your target level. You can learn this further in technical analysis courses. Of course, the minimum ideal is about 1:3 for risk/reward. 1:3 suggests you’re willing to risk $1 for the expectation to earn $3. To limit losses on long positions, most investors use a stop-loss order. This order helps them buy securities if they reach a predetermined price – which is mostly the price you paid for the asset in the first place. As an example, if a trader purchases 100 shares for $15 per trade and expects it to raise $45 in the next month, their stop-loss order will close as soon as it reaches the price. Stop-loss orders can be adjusted, depending on your desired risk/reward ratio.
Refer to this article for when you reach the starting point of swing trading, right after you take a course and ask a stock expert. This way, you can look back and forth on the most common terms and methods you can use for swing trading!
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