The Growing Popularity of Trading

There’s no doubt that trading has become more popular over the past decade or more. For some investors, working from home, where ever home might be, and earning consistent profits through trading stocks, options, futures, or currencies, is both appealing and lucrative.

On top of that, markets are more accessible than ever, information is readily available and internet access has become widespread. Perhaps even more importantly, experts are willing to share their knowledge, so mentoring and coaching help are accessible.

However, no one is saying that trading to earn money is easy. You need market knowledge, a willingness to dig deep on technical patterns and an understanding that all trading requires some level of risk.

Successful trading also requires a specialized mindset, an idea explored in my 2014 co-authored book, The Winning Way.

3 Traits Every Trader Needs

In The Winning Way book, we look at three psychological mindsets that are necessary for a trader, regardless of experience, to be successful. Those mindsets are: one, accept market uncertainty; two, focus on the “now”; and three, think probability.

I thought it would be useful to outline these qualities in a little more detail here.

Accept Market Uncertainty

You have to believe that each trade is a random event and the outcome is out of your control and beyond any kind of analysis. Unless you know what each of the millions and millions of investors and other market participants are betting on each day, it’s impossible to predict what the markets will do.

I began making a trading profit when I started to believe in my own tools and systems for trading. I accepted that markets are uncertain and that leads to randomly distributed winners and losers, at least in the short term. However, in the long run, I trust that my edge gives me a higher probability of winning than losing.

Focus on Now

We’ve all been conditioned to learn from past experience. That works, mostly, since a change in behaviour usually leads to a different outcome. But in trading, it is detrimental to associate current trading decisions with past results. As every mutual fund prospectus tell us: Past results are not indicative of future performance. Professional traders understand that each trade is random, operating independently of previous trades.

Great traders focus only on opportunities that are happening right now.

Think Probability

The focus on uncertain markets can be difficult for some traders as they wonder how to achieve consistent and profitable results in such an environment. Although markets are uncertain in the short run, long-term predictable results are achievable. Your own trading strategies and systems give you an edge. You will have both winning and losing trades in the short run, and in the long run your edge will give you a higher probability of winning than losing. Being able to understand probability also helps you become a more disciplined trader. You will be able to trade with less emotion, allowing you to think more clearly and ultimately make better trading decisions.

My Story

I started trading in 2001. By 2003, my initial success had disappeared. I was spending thousands of dollars on complex trading systems that just didn’t work. In short, I was struggling to find a new path that would suit my goals.

At that time, I was fortunate enough to meet the late George Fontanills, one of most respected options traders in the world. I needed George to help me understand my trading personality and what type of trading would be most suitable for me. More importantly, I needed a mentor to send me on the path of developing a winning mindset.

George mentored me on trading strategies and techniques, but most importantly, he guided me to my own trading personality. He knew I wasn’t suited to day trading, because I hated the idea of staring at a screen all day. He also knew I didn’t have the patience for long-term trading. So he came up with the idea of short-term or swing trading.

Swing Trading

The timeframe of my trades is anywhere from a few days to a few months, depending on the stock and market volatility. And because swing patterns are highly repetitive and happen over and over again, stock movements can be predicted with a high degree of accuracy.

George was able to pinpoint my strengths and weaknesses as a trader. He taught me valuable risk management skills and how to protect my trading capital. He also taught me how to trade small but win big, and how to scale up. Under George, I learned to focus on mastering one or two markets before expanding into other areas of trading.

In conclusion, I believe that you must apply the three psychological mindsets mentioned above at all times to keep trading simple. If you can do all that, you will see a breakthrough in your trading, and very soon you will become a consistent and profitable trader well on your way to achieving success.

Career Tips To Help You Maximize Your Income

Nobody goes into their career thinking that they want to make the least amount of money possible making it nearly impossible to retire. The goal for many is to make it to retirement as fast as possible which will take proactive saving but also maximizing your income. A proactive approach is need to maximize income as nobody is simply going to give you a raise without asking for it or pay you to watch Netflix for hours upon hours. The following are career and personal tips that will help you maximize your income and get that much closer to retirement.

Ask For Those Extra Shifts

Taking on an extra shift or volunteering for overtime is going to make a difference over the course of months. Not only are you earning extra money but you are also avoiding spending money as you are at work. Asking for extra shifts then calling off is a recipe to never be offered an extra shift again. This does not mean to pick up multiple shifts and burn yourself out as professional burnout impacts a multitude of people yearly. The fact that you pick up a shift whenever needed will have management looking at you like a team player which could eventually lead to a promotion.

Get A Bump In Commission

Those people in sales know that an extra percent in commission is going to make a huge difference in yearly income. Asking for this might not be as easy as many think as you will have to present reasons why you deserve this bump up. This is when you bring out closing numbers as those people who close the highest number of leads deserve this bump. Those salespeople with low closing percentages cost the company more money as the marketing team has to get more leads to make up for lack of closing.

Freelance From Home

Freelancing from home during free time can make a huge difference in your income. Adding supplemental income weekly can increase your quality of life immensely. Those people with proficient writing or web design skills can start earning immediately on a freelancer platform. Working a few hours extra per day does not appeal to many people but those that enjoy writing or designing will not mind. At the very least instead of a Netflix binge write a blog post or product copy daily. The best thing about freelancing is that you can set your workload as well as deadlines. The Money Alert is a great financial resource that can help direct you on how to save the money you are earning from freelancing.

Entertain Offers From Other Companies

You should never stop looking for better opportunities as far as your career goes. Your dream job is not going to wait until you are laid off or decide to quit your job. Accept interviews at other companies as well to see what they offer you that is superior to your current job to entice you to leave it. At some point you might receive an offer that is much better than the compensation package you have at your current company. Allow your company to try to match the offer before making any permanent decisions. This tactic cannot be used very often so only do this when the offer you receive is incredible.

Maximize your income and allow yourself to live a lifestyle that you never thought was possible. Retirement can come years early if you follow the above tips.

Transferring Your Skills From One Industry To The Next

Throughout an individual’s working career, they can have between 5 and 7 jobs. That means some professionals average a job change every few years.

Rather than leaving behind our experiences and starting fresh, we often take the skills we’ve developed into our new positions, which indeed proves an advantage for us and our next employer.

This doesn’t mean that every talent you have developed will be useful in your new job. But, more often than not, there are some basic skills that are transferable. These types of skills are often put into three categories: functional skills; personal traits/attitudes; and knowledge-based.

Functional skills are those that people use to accomplish tasks, such as writing. Personal attitudes or traits are those that make up your personality, such as independent, quick learner, etc. Knowledge-based skills are ones that you have developed with formal training, such as at business school or through accounting courses.

By having an idea – or better yet a list – of your strengths in each area, you will be able to see how you’ll fit into a new role.

Compare your talents and expertise to the new job requirements and see how you can fit into the role. This will help you sell yourself to the company or board by showing them you have skills that will be a boon to their business.

What are the must-have skills for today’s business leaders?

While most leaders come from various backgrounds, there are some basic talents they need to have developed to make them successful in any industry.

These include:

  1. Innovation: The ability to adapt and to think outside the box is crucial to many businesses. Oftentimes, we stick to what we know and continue to do things the way they have always been done. However, that is often not the best way to draw in new customers or to boost sales. By trying a fresh, original solution to a problem, leadership can advance the organization’s interest substantially.
  1. Technological acceptance: Needless to say, there have been major strides forward in the tech world over the past few decades and technology in many ways has substantially changed the landscape and environment we do business in. Moving forward into the 21st century, business leaders will need to implement – and be willing to implement – new technology to stay competitive.
  1. Human-ness: Despite an increase in automation of the workplace, managing people is still a major part of leadership in any industry. The executive who can demonstrate sensitivity, honesty and fairness will go a long way.

If the average person can expect to change their job every few years, it only makes sense to be prepared. By developing skills that can be useful in different industries and positions, leaders will be able to rise to new challenges no matter what industry they find themselves in.

How Much Does It Cost to Start a Plumbing Company?

Some people dream of opening big law firms; others big marketing firms. But what about a plumbing company? Most people don’t think of plumbing companies when they think of profitable businesses, but with a shortage of skilled laborers, the demand for plumbers is sky-high.

The Plumbing-Heating-Cooling-Contractors-National Assocation says the industry needs more than 100,000 new workers to fill the roles of retiring plumbers.

But how does one start a plumbing company? The most difficult part is becoming a licensed plumber. The next step? Figuring out the costs.

How Much Does It Cost to Open a Plumbing Company?

Starting a plumbing business isn’t as cost-prohibitive as you might think. In fact, the start-up costs are minimal.

The biggest expense will likely be your van or service truck. You can choose to purchase a new or used vehicle. Used vehicles are the budget-friendly option. It will still cost you several thousand dollars for a used vehicle, but a new one can cost upwards of $30,000 or more.

In addition to a service truck, you’ll also need a certificate. This can cost up to $8,500 and may take up to a year to obtain.

Equipment is an obvious and necessary expense. You’ll need assorted fittings and pipes as well as storage for these parts. Other tools might include:

  • Circular saw
  • Reciprocating saw
  • Pipe wrenches
  • Whole hog right angle drill
  • Propane torch
  • Screw gun
  • Cast iron pipe cutter
  • Teflon tape

For the business end of things, you’ll need a smartphone, laptop or PC as well as office equipment. The total cost of equipment can easily exceed $5,000.

When you’re just opening your business, you may want to start with the basics. You can always expand in the future. The key important thing is to make sure you have the right equipment and a reliable vehicle to get to your customers.

Steps to Start a Plumbing Business

Now that you understand the costs of opening your business, you can start taking steps to make it official.

Make a Plan

First, you need a plan. A clear business plan is essential to success when running any type of business. If you plan on applying for financing, they will expect to see and review your business plan. Focus on your target market, your initial costs and how long it will take you to start turning a profit.

Form a Legal Entity, Licenses and Insurance

The next step is to register your business and form a legal entity. While you have multiple entity options, most plumbers choose to form an LLC. An LLC will shield you from liability, and you can have a single-owner company.

In addition to forming your business, you’ll also need to obtain the appropriate licenses and insurance. Most plumbers display their license numbers on their websites.

Open a Business Bank Account and Set Up Accounting

Bookkeeping is an essential part of running a business. To succeed, you need to keep track of your income and expenses. The simplest method is to set up a QuickBooks account, which will keep track of your invoices and expenses. In many cases, you can sync up your account with apps and invoicing software to make bookkeeping virtually effortless.

You’ll also need to open a business bank account to manage your finances.

How to Overcome Your Addiction to Cannabis

If you have used cannabis for quite a long time, you may no longer feel like you are being as productive or feeling as motivated to get through the work you need to complete. If it is something you have used daily for months or even years, you may have trouble remembering certain things and could no longer feel motivated enough to do the kinds of things that you said you would do. If you are struggling to concentrate, are always in a bad mood, and are having a hard time keeping relationships with people in your life, you may want to stop using cannabis completely.

After choosing to quit, many people wonder about the level of damage they may have caused to their brain. While you may assume that you are going to continue to feel this way for the rest of your life, it is not necessarily true. There are a few different things you can do while focusing on your recovery from an addiction to cannabis so that you can start feeling motivated again and memorize more of what is going on instead of forgetting so much.

Tips For Improving Your Memory

If you are struggling to remember a lot of the things that have happened, you should watch what you are eating and make sure you are consuming foods that support brain health, including foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants, such as blueberries and salmon. Aside from altering your diet, you should play different types of games to focus on improving your ability to remember things and concentrate even more than usual. You do not have to go out and purchase games to play because you can easily download some memory games on your phone from the app store.

How to Start Concentrating Better

If concentrating has become a real struggle for you and you are having a difficult time focusing on one specific task at a time, you should create a to-do list and make sure you are only working on one task on the list at a time. When you are trying to complete different tasks, you should avoid any potential distractions. Turn your phone on silent, turn the television off, make sure you are in a private room, and focus solely on what is in front of you.

What to Do About Low Reaction Times

If you do not have a quick reaction to things and have noticed a slowed reaction occurring over a certain period, you should play some video games in your spare time. When you are playing a video game, you need to focus on what is in front of you while listening to the sounds around you to make sure you know what is happening in the game. While you do not want to sit in front of the television for hours on end, it helps to play a video game or two for an hour each day to improve your reaction times.

If you are not into playing video games, you could always participate in other types of games that will help you react much faster than usual. Some of these different activities include baseball, basketball, and softball. If you start playing for an hour or two each day, you may quickly start to notice such a significant improvement.

How to Overcome Sluggishness

You may feel sluggish and sleepy most of the time. If you never feel fully awake, it is going to have a negative impact on your life because then you are not going to want to go out and do things or have fun with anyone. You have likely thought about drinking some coffee or even drinking one of those energy drinks from the store, but those beverages are only temporary fixes. The problem could be that you are just not getting enough sleep. Try going to bed a little bit earlier so that you can get a few extra hours of sleep and see if that makes a difference for you.

Become More Motivated

If you want to be motivated enough to get things done but never feel motivated enough, you should start coming up with a list of all the different goals you would like to achieve after you quit. Develop a rewards system where you would get to treat yourself to something special if you were to achieve at least one of the goals on your list. It is a great way to keep yourself more motivated to get certain things done.

Top 5 Professions That Will Never Leave You without Money

The rhythm of life in the modern world demands us more and more, the strong competition in the labor market and inflation are factors that contribute to decapitalize us. Many people run out of money without having spent a week of their collection day. Finding options that help you generate additional money is a way to solve and prevent the inconveniences caused by the lack of this important asset to acquire the necessary assets to live. Professions such as reverse phone, writing, photography, design are in great demand, practical to perform and are very well-paid.

The activities most in demand and that offer great possibilities to work are the activities related to education, the technological area, and marketing, are fields of work that are in great demand in today’s world.

In education, the request for essay writing services generates a wide source of work, because the academic evaluation is based on rehearsals and students are constantly overwhelmed by a large number of assignments and the lack of time to fulfill their obligations.

The technological area offers a wide range of work opportunities, the programming and technical service of electronic devices generates another labor field with great demand.

The life of marketing is writing; therefore the works related to the writing have a high demand in this world of great competitiveness. There will always be work for writing, for designers, and for the technological area.

Among the most profitable professions, with the highest demand and that adapt to your lifestyle are the following:

  1. – Photography services; It is a profession with a lot of demand, you have the freedom to choose where you do it, it’s nice, you can travel, enjoy the adventure, the recreation, and rest while you make money. It is a profitable job and requires little effort. You do not need to make large investments; the investment is initially made when you acquire the equipment. It is a work from home college students ideal since it is done in free time and the topics are varied, you can specialize in the area that you like. In free moments and summer, you can enjoy the most beautiful landscapes, enjoy and make money.
  2. – Freelance; It is a profession that you can do from the comfort of your home, it has the particularity that you choose your schedule, which allows you to study, enjoy and take care of your loved ones. It is a working modality in which you can offer the world your services according to your best abilities. Freelancer is a job that will not leave you without money since you can constantly receive projects. You just have to be responsible, provide good service and make sure you get a good income, plus you do not need to make a large investment. You can offer freelance writing online design services, programming or marketing, depending on the area in which you have more skills. The investment is minimal, only with a laptop or PC with Wi-Fi or Internet connection; you reach all corners of the world and offer your service.

3.-Technical service of electronic devices; we are used to the lifestyle that the automated world facilitates us. Technology is necessary to make tasks more practical and increase productivity. Every day thousands of requests for technical service of devices are generated, it is an activity that you can do in your free time, you do not need to make a large investment and it is very profitable. Only with the necessary knowledge, basic tools, you can provide a good service.

4.-Writing services; It is a profession with a very high demand and very well remunerated. Students are constantly requesting essay writing services, and you can offer writing services for various purposes. It is a job that is related to all areas of life in society. You can do it in the comfort of your home, in free time while you study, at a time that you decide and what is even better, money is always present.

5.-Programming; It is a very demanded profession at present. The world is automated, devices or machines need software to work, so it becomes a good option when choosing a profession that does not leave you without money. Every minute thousands of requests for this service are made. It does not require investment; only knowledge mixed with responsibility and honesty. It is a profession that guarantees permanent income from money.

Before starting an activity, it is advisable to look for information regarding the activity to be performed, document, take into account the experience of other people so as not to make the same mistakes, make a good study of the target market, read a money magazine to learn more of the topic, make an evaluation about the costs and possible gains and identify your strengths and weaknesses. Taking into account these recommendations you have the advantagewon of starting an activity with security and the money will always be present.

How A Lack of Sleep Can Affect Your Job

Sleep is important, yet a surprising number of us are living with lousy sleep habits and terrible sleep patterns. You may know from personal experience that a lack of good sleep can leave us feeling exhausted in the morning. The consequences continue all day long. We’ll tend to be more irritable, we’ll find it harder to pay attention at work, and our work and personal lives will suffer. The list of consequences of sleep deprivation goes on and on — but what can we do about it?

The best ways to get regular sleep involve real lifestyle change and healthy decisions. Our sleep patterns are just that — patterns — so smart sleep habits include going to bed and rising at regular hours and respecting our bodies’ circadian rhythm — a natural pattern associated with the day-night rhythm of the earth. Getting regular exercise and eating well can help our sleep, too, as can avoiding alcohol and other intoxicating substances (especially right before bed — in addition to encouraging us to stay up later, these substances can often affect the actual quality of our sleep even after we nod off). So it may be worth opting out of happy hour a couple of times a week.

Of course, in our high-paced corporate world, we seem to celebrate those who can stay at work late and night and run on 4 hours of sleep a night. But less sleep can make us less efficient, so the reality is that, in order to do your best work, you should be well-rested. Any good boss will recognize and respect that.

However, even the most careful work on sleep patterns and lifestyle decisions can be insufficient for those of us who suffer from sleep disorders. The number of us who fall into that category is very large.

Sleep disorders are very common, experts say. The most common sleep disorders include insomnia and narcolepsy, each of which affect about 10% of the population. That’s a lot of people — and not all of these folks are diagnosed! In fact, some of the most common sleep disorders are also among the most underdiagnosed.

One striking example of an underdiagnosed sleep disorder is sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is treatable, experts at SoClean Canada — a company that specializes in cleaners for CPAP machines, often used to treat sleep apnea — tell us. However, there’s no way to treat a patient who does not know that they have a problem, and a startling number of sleep apnea sufferers are undiagnosed. Some 80% of moderate and severe cases go undiagnosed, experts estimate, which means that there are as many as 22 million sleep apnea sufferers in the United States — the vast majority of whom are dealing with the condition in ignorance and on their own.

Sleep apnea, by the way, is a disorder that involves breathing disruption during sleep. The symptoms include difficulty staying asleep and loud snoring. This is not a diagnosis, of course, but if you’re experiencing exhaustions, you should speak to a medical expert about the possibility that you are suffering from sleep apnea or another sleep disorder.

That’s the bottom line here: to get the kind of help you need, you should speak to a doctor. Don’t let your work or home environment suffer, either due to poor habits or an undiagnosed condition. Make that your next step, and start reclaiming your sleep — and your life!

Should You Start Your Own Business?

We’re all working hard, but in many cases, we don’t seem to be making more money. Is it our imagination, or is there something else going on? In many cases, it’s the latter. For that, we can blame something known as wage stagnation. There are a lot of job openings, but the wages just aren’t keeping up. For 2017, the Federal Reserve set a wage growth target of 3.5 percent for the United States. Instead, wages grew only 2.6 percent. Other countries are experiencing similar issues, and experts blame a variety of factors, including the decline of labor unions and the rise of what’s known as the “gig economy.” In light of all that, it’s tempting to think about quitting your office job and starting your own business. There are a variety of factors to consider before you turn in your two weeks notice, though.

Know What You Bring to the Table

It’s easy to sit in your cubicle at work and dream about starting a business that’s an instant success and allows you to retire at age 40. When you’re sitting in your office, you probably don’t have time to really map out the details of what it would take to get your own business up and running. The old cliché that “the grass is always greener on the other side” very much applies here. If you don’t like your current job, then just about anything seems better than what you’re doing at the moment. It’s an easy thing to imagine that working from home or renting a storefront will magically lead to higher take home pay, but you have to work really hard to ensure that becomes a reality. You have to talk with reputable financial advisers, like those at Global PEG, and figure out if your business plan is truly viable.

If you have a family, you also need to make sure that they’re OK with you quitting your boring but steady job for a much more unpredictable lifestyle. For instance, will you be able to get health insurance through your spouse’s job, or will you have to look elsewhere? Will your spouse and children be OK with the long hours that are required when you’re trying to get your business up and running? Don’t assume that they’ll be OK with all this; instead, sit down and have a long conversation — or five.

Beware of Scams

If you have any social media presence whatsoever, you’ve probably gotten a message from a friend asking you to come to a “spa party” or other event. When you get there, the “spa party” is actually an excuse to try to sell you facials or lipstick or something else that your friend obtained through a multi-level marketing company, or MLM. Such companies often charge people a few hundred or even a few thousand dollars to buy stock in makeup or clothes or nutritional supplements. The “independent consultants” then have to both sell their stock and recruit others to sell if they want to make any money. Making money is a lot more easily said than done, as it’s hard to find others to recruit unless you join a company that’s just starting and on the rise. Such schemes are especially attractive to parents who want to quit their job and stay at home with their kids but also need to bring in a source of income. Unfortunately, that source of income is mostly a myth, as a Federal Trade Commission report indicates that 99 percent of MLM participants lose money.

If you’re thinking, “Well, so what? 90 percent of small business fail anyway,” then think again. That 90 percent number gets thrown around a lot, but it’s not backed up by facts. According to the Small Business Administration, 39 percent of legitimate small businesses end up being profitable. Another 30 percent break even, while the other 30 percent end up losing money. Those numbers are daunting, but if you’ve done your research and consulted with some experts, the odds don’t seem nearly as scary. Be ready to work hard. Be ready for less stability than you’d like, especially in the first few months or even years. But if you play your cards right and get a little lucky, you can end up being one of the true success stories.

The Growing Problem With E-Mail Security

E-mail security has been a huge issue since the technology’s emergence in the mid-1990s, and for all of our tech sophistication and heightened awareness of the problem, it’s only gotten worse.

Cybersecurity specialist Kazpersky Labs, for example, reports that while the volume of spam dropped last year, the firm’s tracking showed a 59 percent jump in phishing attacks. But the bad actors are a creative lot – just when you think you have a handle on one e-mail scam, they change tactics and you have to adjust your defenses.

Throughout most of 2017, for example, the types of e-mail to look out for contained malicious URLs, linking back to sites hosting malware. Proofpoint found the volume of these e-mails jumped by 600 percent in the third quarter – a 2,200 percent from the same 2016 quarter. But by the fourth quarter, cybercriminals switched their preferred scamming methods from malicious URL use to messages carrying malicious attachments. The volume of these messages jumped by 300 percent during the fourth quarter from the third.

Keeping up is almost like trying to win at the whack-a-mole game.

It’s fascinating (in a train wreck kind of way) to look at the ebbs and flows of the scams that the bad guys use to convince people to act, and how adept they are at seizing on major events and issues to get past their guard.

Last year’s big opportunities?

The FIFA 2018 world cup preparation, giving rise to fraudulent, if official-looking messages about lottery wins and promising free tickets. And the cryptocurrency craze has provided a rich vein of blockchain-themed tricks, like malware-laden websites disguised as cryptocurrency exchanges. Another trick is malware in spam emails, billed to be utilities for earning Bitcoins.

There is a cost to all this. Phishing scams alone cost American businesses about $500 million a year. But there are a lot of impacts of cyber attacks – obvious and those beneath the surface – to think about, as a study by Deloitte showed.

The firm identified 14 cyberattack impact factors with direct and/or intangible costs that will add to the pain of a major cyber incident. The direct costs ranged from attorney fees and litigation to customer notification, and technical investigation to cybersecurity improvements. Beneath the surface? Operational disruption, for one. Then there are increases in your insurance premiums and the lost value of customer relations and contract revenue. It’s not a pretty picture for potential damage, Deloitte’s modeling showed.

Any number of solutions will help mitigate the risks that come with our increasing dependence on e-mail as a fast, efficient and inexpensive way to communicate with each other.

The best place to start is to make people aware and equip them to be on guard against malicious e-mails that might make their way into e-mail boxes. The tips bear repeating: Never click on a link or an attachment on an unsolicited e-mail. Always check the sender. Bad actors can be quite skilled at replicating logos to look like the real deal, but your bank is not going to ask you to share sensitive information like your social or account number or bank account password through this channel. And common sense applies. Offers that seem too good to be true usually are, especially if the outreach is out of the blue.

But e-mail security issues have a broad scope, and are an enterprise-wide concern. It makes a holistic, enterprise wide approach to secure messaging the imperative for any organization that exchanges sensitive information with customers.

The way of the future? Increasingly, it’s moving toward integrative solutions that enable users to control, track, share and protect sensitive business information as a means of heading problems off at the pass.

How You Can Learn to Trade on Rules-Based Trading

We are creatures of habit. Habits form patterns that become rules of a sort for how we live our lives in a dependable way.

One of the most compelling illustrations of this is Danish photographer Peter Funch’s “42nd and Vanderbilt” project. He stood at that corner in New York City and from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. between 2007 and 2016 took photos of commuters on their daily pilgrimage. Many of them were the same people, day in and day out, just more grey and grizzled over time. Their faces always had the same expressions, mostly grim. Many wore the exact same shirts in 2016 that they wore in 2007, or shirts in a similar color and style. They also consistently did the same things, like holding a to-go coffee cup the same way.

That sort of habitual consistency is also frequently seen in the stock market. People who figure out how to read the patterns and act accordingly can make a lot of money, and because of that consistency, they can do so in a way that mitigates a lot of the risks of playing the market.

It’s called rules-based trading, and I should know because it’s a strategy I’ve used and share.

Rules-based trading is really a dependable approach for beginners and those with a low appetite for risk. It’s quite simple, actually, for those who do their homework and who are mindful of and keep to schedules.

It’s a way to piggy-back off the seasonal buying and selling that marks the activities of the institutional investment community, and reflects both bullish and bearish environments. Here are some examples.

On the bull side, take a look at Rockwell Automation. Between Nov. 13 and Dec. 26 in 21 of the last 23 years, the stock has gone up, with an average return of 5.76 percent. The return on options plays: 50 percent to 100 percent.

On the bear side, there’s Skecher, whose stock has declined between Sept. 14 and 27 in 17 of the last years, showing an average 6.82 percent decline. Putting options on that play will get a return of 50 percent to 100 percent.

Here’s why this system is a good one to put in place. You know what you’re getting. It’s designed to “set and forget.” You place your trade and don’t do anything more with it until it’s stopped out, the target is reached or you hit a trailing stop loss. You’re set as long as you keep it all within the precisely defined windows.

You avoid the psychological pressures of trading, but still get the fun of watching how it’s going without having to constantly be monitoring and analyzing new information. However, you do have to do your homework to identify likely targets (through data available on platforms like Yahoo Finance and Bloomberg) and apply the option strategy that fits.

Rules-based trading is an excellent way to build market knowledge and discipline that, over time, you’ll be able to take to the proverbial bank.

Certus Trading makes it easier to get into rules-based trading with our Profit Scheduler Club for options. We do the data analysis and show what options strategies will apply best, equipping you to comfortably make the trade.