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Are You Making This Basic Trading Mistake?

I have been trading for more than 20 years and was a fund manager for half that time, beginning on the floor of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. If I had to list the top three mistakes I see most traders make, one that would for sure be on the list is when people enter the market. Simply put, one of the worst things you can do is buy after price has moved higher and sell after price has declined, yet these are two actions people take in the markets every day. It’s no wonder ‘trading’ gets a bad rap as this is a recipe for losses.

Before getting into the details of the mistake and correcting it, it’s important to understand two key components of markets.

  • Free Trading WorkshopWhy do prices move in any market? Price in any market turns at price levels where demand and supply are out of balance. The consistently profitable trader is able to identify a demand and supply imbalance which means knowing where banks and institutions are buying and selling in a market. By quantifying institution demand and supply areas on a price chart, you can identify market turns and market moves in advance with a very high degree of accuracy.
  • Who is on the other side of your trade? Trading is simply a transfer of accounts from those who don’t know what they are doing into the accounts of those who do. The consistently profitable trader can tell that a novice trader is on the other side of their trades by where they are entering and exiting trades.

The Mistake

Let’s take a look at a trade from a recent live trading session I delivered for our students in Crude Oil. Notice area A. Area A is the origin of a decline in price and qualified as a supply zone for us, meaning financial institutions were selling Oil at that level. Next, we wait for price to return to the supply area. When it does, at B, I am a very interested seller as I am confident I am selling to a novice buyer. I know this because the buyer at B is making the two mistakes that every consistent losing (novice) trader makes. First, they are buying after a period of buying, as I mentioned above, and second, they are buying at a price level where supply exceeds demand, where the big smart money is selling.  

Crude Oil Futures Income Trade: March 7 – 8
When trading, your entry point is crucial.
Why would someone buy at B? They obviously think that is a good price to buy at and typically, it’s for the same reasons… good news and higher prices. You see, most people buy when the news is good and wait for prices to go higher before they buy. This is why many traders lose money and why most investors never come close to achieving their financial goals. They forget that trading and investing is no different than properly buying at wholesale and selling at retail or waiting for a good deal before making a purchase. C is the profit target where we buy back the short position. In this case as well, we are buying from someone who is still making those two mistakes: selling after a decline in price and into a level where demand exceeds supply.

Instead of being the buyer at B, try joining the smart money and be the seller. The proper entry I am speaking of in this piece works in any market and any time frame. A key component to making these work that is beyond the scope of this article is this: when taking any buy or sell entries in markets, make sure you know exactly where price is with regard to supply and demand. Whether you trade Stocks, Futures, Forex or Options, understand that behind all the candles on your screen in all these markets are people and their emotional decisions to buy and sell. Most will fall for the emotional buy and sell traps allowing others to get paid from them.

Live the life you choose.

Sam Seiden – sseiden@tradingacademy.com

DISCLAIMER This newsletter is written for educational purposes only. By no means do any of its contents recommend, advocate or urge the buying, selling or holding of any financial instrument whatsoever. Trading and Investing involves high levels of risk. The author expresses personal opinions and will not assume any responsibility whatsoever for the actions of the reader. The author may or may not have positions in Financial Instruments discussed in this newsletter. Future results can be dramatically different from the opinions expressed herein. Past performance does not guarantee future results. Reprints allowed for private reading only, for all else, please obtain permission.

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