From seasoned finance professionals looking to strike out on their own to relative novices who crave an exciting, fulfilling way to earn income, trading attracts people from all walks of life. Given this diversity, it’s hard to make sweeping generalizations about the “modern trader.” One of trading’s greatest strengths is its broad appeal and accessibility.
Most traders cite a few common reasons for choosing to trade. Let’s look at five things to love about trading:
1 – They Earn Every Penny of Their Worth
Over the past decade or two, employers across a wide range of industries have warmed to the concept of performance-based compensation. Restaurant managers, engineers, legal professionals, Web designers and many others stand to earn significant bonuses or profit shares for reaching pre-defined goals during the course of a project or accounting period. These windfalls often make otherwise unrewarding jobs palatable.
For traders, on the other hand, performance-based compensation is the norm. People who trade stocks, futures, forex and other instruments for a living earn exactly what they’re worth. While this demands flexibility, responsiveness and constant effort, the payoff can be tremendous: Whereas a designer or engineer might earn a 10-percent bonus for a successfully completed project, traders’ earnings are never capped.
2 – They Get Paid to Get Rich
Financial professionals are often accused of selfishness, but such criticisms miss the point. It’s not selfish to provide income for oneself and one’s family. Successful traders get paid to enrich themselves and their loved ones by employing honest, repeatable strategies. Their earnings aren’t contingent on pleasing fickle bosses, meeting nebulous goals or aligning factors beyond their direct control. Better yet, daily profit and loss figures provide detailed, real-time feedback. When it comes to their performance, traders always know where they stand.
3 – They Set — and Reach — Their Own Income Goals
Since they don’t answer to anyone but themselves and their families, traders don’t have to worry about achieving unrealistic benchmarks that may not be directly tied to their performance. Trading rewards the ability to employ proven strategies that can generate earnings in any market environment. Based on their selected strategies, their personal income goals, prevailing market conditions and other factors, traders have the freedom to set their own income goals without worrying about impressing superiors or clients. Their minute-to-minute activities may involve some stress, but traders take solace in knowing that their goals are theirs alone.
4 – They Enjoy Enviable Freedom
Traders are in the markets as much or as little as they want. While traders who focus on stocks and commodities must be active when markets for those instruments are open, those who dabble in forex or other securities can work productively at odd hours. Of course, those who don’t take extra time to research securities, analyze market trends and delve deeper into the finer points of trading may miss out on opportunities or make costly mistakes. Without anyone chaining them to a desk, though, traders are free to spend time with their families — or take some much-needed “me time” — during the week.
5 – They Have Crucial Leverage
Traders enjoy personal, professional and financial leverage. These days, too many workers — even those who earn a decent income as white-collar professionals — toil in unsatisfactory occupations because the alternatives appear to be worse. Whether they’re keeping a job for its relatively inexpensive health insurance benefits or its “generous” time-off allowances, these folks accept unsatisfying working conditions in exchange for relative social and economic stability.
Hardworking traders, by contrast, don’t have to worry about this trade-off. With substantial reserves of working capital, traders can test and deploy new strategies that further boost their professional independence. On a personal level, flexible hours and the promise of ample cash flow create social leverage that improve traders’ relations with their families and allow them to enjoy their non-trading hours.
Who wouldn’t want all these advantages? Trading won’t make someone rich overnight, of course, but it’s one of the few ways to earn income that allows one to control their income, set their own deadlines, and leave a trail of meaningful accomplishments in their wake. Enroll in a half-day class at a local financial education center to learn more about the myriad benefits of online trading.