In forex trading, doing the little extra things to make your trading more successful can make all the difference in the world to your profit at the end of the week, month, and year. You can, in fact, increase your trading profits by as much as 35% to 50% simply by doing a few little extra things that the majority of traders neglect to do (and we all know that the majority of traders are not consistently winning traders).

So today I’m going to help you out with a few little important extras that you can add to your forex trading arsenal—little tricks designed to make you a more successful, winning trader.

1 – Trust your intuition

Once you have adequately educated yourself about the basics of forex trading, and you’ve actually traded long enough to get a feel for the markets, trust your intuition.

Good traders develop good trading intuition. It is never the primary thing that guides their trading, but they do rely on it when it gives them a sense of the market’s next move. When I say “intuition,” I’m not talking about just thinking a trade might work out well; I’m talking about a genuine intuitive sense, the almost extra-sensory knowing of something that is very intense and outside of the process of reasoning.

Let me offer an example from my own trading experience. One day I brought up a chart of GBP/USD. Previously that day, I hadn’t been paying any attention at all to GBP/USD—I didn’t even know what price it was trading at, whether it was up or down on the day, where the daily pivot points were. I was basically totally uninformed about the current market conditions for GBP/USD. But as soon as I brought up the chart and looked where the “quick order” buy and sell buttons are located in the top left-hand corner of my charts, it was as if the red “sell” button was a giant, flashing, neon sign. Without any real market knowledge to go on, I simply had this incredibly strong impulse telling me to sell GBP/USD. Fortunately, I acted on it, selling at 1.6521. Less than a minute later, the market had dropped to 1.6514. Fewer than five minutes later it had dropped to 1.6502.  It eventually dropped all the way down to around 1.6450. That’s trusting your intuition—just learning to listen when some extra-sensory part of your brain is screaming at you to either “Buy!” or “Sell!”

Can your intuition ever be wrong? Of course it can, and that’s what stop-loss orders are for. But I’m convinced that acting on those very strong intuitions that come along now and again will make you a lot of money over time. Also, it seems to be the case that the more you use your intuition (i.e., listen to it), the better and more reliable it becomes, and the more often it surfaces for you to use to your advantage.

2 – Trade with the prevailing trend

It took me awhile to learn and accept this one, but it paid off. Here’s a very simple fact of trading: Your trades always have a better chance of being successful when they’re made in the same direction as the overall trend.

I knew a commodities trader once who had a perfectly profitable trading strategy—but one that became much more profitable when he added the filter to his trades of taking only buy trade signals, no sell trade signals, when the overall daily trend was up. Conversely, he took only sell trades when the prevailing trend was down. By adding that one little filtering element to his trading he was able to double his profits. It really is very simple—the market is more likely to continue moving decisively in the direction of the prevailing overall trend.

At the very least, learn to be more cautious —i.e., quicker to take profits, quicker to cut losses short—if you’re taking a counter-trend trade.

3 – Wait for the best opportunities

Patience is very much a virtue in forex trading. The forex markets are open and actively trading 24 hours a day, 5 days a week—that means there will be countless occasions to take excellent trading opportunities in any given week, any given trading day.

So learn to patiently wait for the best opportunities. Most traders worry about “missing” an opportunity, but the reality of trading is that, more often than not, those traders end up jumping into a market too early and ending up with either losing trades, or, at best, trades they could have entered at much more favorable price points.

Don’t worry about missing opportunities, because there always more opportunities right around the corner in the forex market. It’s one of the great things about forex trading—missed a chance to make 50 pips today? Guess what? You’ll get another chance tomorrow!

Let’s throw a patience-teaching chart in here to illustrate what I’m talking about. I’m going to show you the chart in two parts. First, look to the far right of this chart to show what might be the short-term bottom and a good buying spot for AUD/USD – marked with three red “thumbs up” underneath it. You’ve got almost a solid pin bar up, closing above the 5 and 10 Mas, and the highest 15-minute close in a couple of hours, and price is at a reasonable stopping point of .8720. However; (see next chart, shifted and showing price action about four hours further ahead)…

MT4 chart

…if you’d been patient and waited a couple of more hours, you’d have gotten the much better buy spot—20 pips lower, at .8700 even—this time indicated by a strong, definitive pin bar up, with a nice long wick showing rejection of lower prices—marked on the chart by three green arrows up, and at a price point significantly more likely to provide solid support, the “round number” level of .8700. From there, you can see the market took right on off to the upside.

You’d likely have gotten stopped out on that first trade try at .8720—even though you can see that longer term it would have still worked out profitably—but even if you hadn’t gotten stopped out, you’d have had to sweat it out for quite a while, and your entry point would have been 20 pips worse, and therefore your profits would have been 20 pips fewer.

MT4 Chart

I repeat, patience is a virtue. Don’t fall into the trap of taking something that looks like it might maybe work out okay. Wait for something that looks GREAT!

4 – BE the Casino

The house, the casino, always wins at the end of the day in gambling. In your trading, you should try to be like the casino (not like the reckless gambler destined to lose money).

So, how does the casino play? First, it only plays games where it has the edge. Don’t take trades without a trading edge—a strategy, a technique, whatever, something that gives you an “edge” and a higher probability of winning. Secondly, casinos always practice perfect execution. They aren’t careless in the way they they play. They always make sure their roulette wheels are perfectly balanced, that their blackjack decks are thoroughly shuffled. Don’t be careless in your trading—always be disciplined in following your chosen trading strategy, in abiding by your money management rules, in choosing your trade entry and exit points. Finally, knowing that they have an edge, casinos aren’t bothered by seeing a few losses here and there (sometimes even several losses in a row), because they know that in the end their edge will make them profitable. Likewise, winning traders aren’t thrown off their game by a couple of losing trades. Confident of having the proper trading mindset, a good strategy, sound money management rules, and the necessary self-discipline to maintain all of those, they know, just like the casinos, that in the end they will come out ahead.

So be the “house,” because “the house always wins.”

Bottom Line

The bottom line is that you can substantially increase your edge as a trader, and therefore your profits, by adding a few simple tricks to your trading arsenal. I’ve outlined a few here, and will offer a few more for you in a follow-up article. But you should always be seeking on your own for ways to refine and improve your trading. Even though the very best traders, the “trading masters,” may have been in the business of trading for 20 years or more, they’re still always looking to learn, always looking to improve their trading. If master traders with 20 years of experience are always doing that, shouldn’t you be doing it too?

Summary:

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Trust your intuition. Go with those very strong, pronounced urges from your brain to “Buy here now!” The more you follow your intuition, the more developed and reliable your intuitive sense will become.

 

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Trade with the overall trend. Trades made in line with the prevailing trend have a built-in better chance, right from the start, of being more successful than counter-trend trades do.

 

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Practice patience and wait for the best trading opportunities. Good opportunities to buy or sell occur at least daily in the forex markets, so wait for the very best ones—don’t get sucked into trying every possible “maybe might work out” trade.

 

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Think and trade like a casino. Develop your trading edge; practice perfect, disciplined execution of your trading strategy; and trade confident of the fact that your trading will be profitable overall—even though you may suffer a few losses along the way.

 

As always, we welcome your comments or questions below, and ask you to share this article around with other traders. And please take just a moment to register with our site here, if you haven’t already. That way we can keep you alerted to all the new services for traders that we’ll be adding here at Tradingfo in the coming months. Best wishes for success always.

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writer bio

JACK MAVERICK

Jack Maverick has over 20 years of experience in futures and forex trading, first as a broker and then as an independent trader.  He enjoys sharing the trading wisdom and knowledge he has gained from his own trading experience and from other successful traders.

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