Starting out - what would you do differently?


Established member
654 18
Starting out:

I'd start with at least £10,000 capital as opposed to the £500 I did have!!

Is 10K enough though?? Any views????



Active member
185 0
I usually make a top £250 risk,and not very often. I use futures but try to take a profit within 24 hours. I don't worry anymore about the money I "could have made". so long as I make a profit of some kind.
The most I've ever had committed in margin at one time was £650 and that was spread over 6 shares and the FTSE.
Today I sat at the screen wondering what was happening and out of sheer frustration took a punt on the Dow. I only took 17 points. As it happened I got out 3 points before its peak. That was a reminder not to do it again. Sheer luck I suspect but that was what the force was telling me to do :rolleyes:
As you will appreciate I'm not living off it. I'm just using it to build a bigger pot, to take bigger positions for smaller movements.
When I have proven to myself that I am reasonably competent and can afford bigger losses I shall start to take money out.
Think of 5% pw return on £100,000. I'd settle for 0.5%. :)
Maybe you think I'm over ambitious? All feedback welcome.
Last edited:


Legendary member
8,394 1,170
axthree said:
Today I sat at the screen wondering what was happening and out of sheer frustration took a punt on the Dow. I only took 17 points. As it happened I got out 3 points before its peak. That was a reminder not to do it again.

Frustration and boredom are two key factors in separating a trader from his money.

You say you were lucky - maybe. But I have a haunting suspicion, the market will take those 17 points back at some point...


Active member
106 0
As said previously on this post, I would change nothing really as the lessons I have learned have made me more aware of the ptifalls stop losses etc, although I think one main thing I would change is to never let a winning trade turn into a losing trade. A few times I should have taken money off the table even if it was 1 point. Small profits to me seem the key, then you gain confidence.


Active member
185 0
I believe you are right. In fact looking back, that has happenned several times. Late New Years resolution. DON'T DO IT AGAIN!
Perhaps I can then improve on the 5% :eek:.
I agree with you, frequent small profits seem to work for me most of the time.
Nice talking to you all.


Experienced member
1,008 119
Just been reading through this thread and interesting points coming out.
Here is my take.
I have found that there are 2 qualities that make somebody a success above all else and these are Discipline and Patience. If you have these qualities then you can use a variety of methods to take your signals and still make a success of it. An example of this is somebody who uses things like moon phase and still manage a +ve PnL.
It takes time to develop a "system" but you do need one, no matter how simple, and once you have it you better stick to it. A "system" does evolve over time but ideally it will remain as boring and easy to execute as possible.
Generating Long/Short signals is only one part of the system and often books pay far too much attention to this or that so called "winning" indicator. The entry signal is nothing if you do not employ a rigorous risk management system. The risk management is the real key and this of course is where the discipline really counts.
I spent so many hours backtesting tradityional indicators that it doesn't bear thinking about. My conclusions are the same as others in this thread. They do not work in the textbook sense. Anybody who has dabbled with Tradestations backtesting will tell you this. If I look at a chart these days I pay far more attention to price action than what any indicator might suggest. Actually now I only look at a slow stochastic and a single MA but pay a lot more attention to what the price is suggesting as it is the real product of buyers and sellers are thinking.

Never think you are right to run a stop because the market will bite you and if you get away with it once then the next loss will likely be far worse.
Paper trading can only get you so far. You will never know how you will trade with real money until you get stuck in.
Trade smaller than you think you should and do not trade with money you simply cannot afford to lose. There is a big difference between trading and punting. Every successful trader fully understands that.
Be proactive. If you can turn an in the money outright position into a better risk by employing a spread or options, do it.
Do not rely on only technical analysis or only fundamental analysis until you find what best suits you. Fundamentals are great in the commodities to provide a long term view and technicals are great for timing your entry and exits.
Never take boredom trades, these are punts and will net lose you money. Wait for the market to show you a trade, do not force yourself to find a trade in the market.

There are a lot of these "rules to live by" that I have discovered either from others or the hard way.

Good trading

Words of wisdom!

I have no idea why this old thread came up on the home page. Clearly I have yet to understand this new version of t2w.
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