Mercedes Pantazi, Customer Support Manager, easyMarkets
The financial markets are a stressful place. Traders who are prepared for the day are much less likely to stumble or let stress get to them. That’s why we’ve developed a basic ten-step approach every trader may follow before starting the day.
- Wake up on time.
If you’re trading a local market, you should be up and functioning long before it starts. If you’re one of those who trades sessions halfway across the world, this step isn’t for you. For those of you struggling to wake up on time, set up your alarm clock far away from your bed so that you actually have to get up to turn it off.
- Make coffee
Before contemplating the universe or your upcoming trades, get a fresh brew of coffee going. None of that cheap instant coffee, either. You need the real deal. Something packed with enough caffeine to get through the first half of the day. How you take your coffee is entirely up to you.
- Drink water, have breakfast
Hydration is essential for just about every activity, including sitting in front of a trading screen. So while the coffee is brewing, have a big gulp of water and consider making breakfast too.
- Check your internet connection
Are you trading the economic calendar? Is timing everything for you? Then you should already have the fastest internet connection your service provider offers. Make sure it’s working properly. You will regret missing this step!
- Open up the economic calendar
We know that you’ve already prepared your big trades for the week well in advance, but just to be thorough, be sure to open the economic calendar to review the key upcoming events for the day. This is a good time to review the events that passed and how markets are reacting to them.
- Check the news
Unless you like to read official government reports via the economic calendar, you should go to your most trusted financial news source and read up on the past 8-12 hours. Get as informed as you can before you begin clocking in for the day.
- Set up your charting tools
If you’re a trader, you probably love charts and rely on them heavily to set up your positions. After reviewing the key items for the day, be sure to open up your trading platform and set up the relevant charts for the day. By now, you should be getting a sense of how the day is going to play out.
- Check your current open positions (if any) and review any positions you recently closed
A simple refresher of your current and/or past positions is always important when starting the day. This gives you insights into your most recent market moves, reminding you of what worked and what didn’t. If you’re maintaining an open position on any security, you should probably bump this step up to No. 4 or 5.
- Plan how long you’ll be at your desk today
Depending on the economic calendar and the trading opportunities that present themselves during the day, you should have a better idea of how much time you’ll need to spend in front of the trading screen. If you’re lucky, you can cut loose in the early afternoon.
- Remind yourself of your trading goals
Before getting started, reflect on your trading goals. Remind yourself of where you intend to go as a trader. Establish a mental connection with your goals and aspirations. This will help you stay motivated. Traders who are motivated are more likely to stay in it for the long haul. It may help to have a list of your goals posted right next to your trading station. The simple act of seeing them spelled out has a positive effect that cannot be ignored.
Being a trader isn’t easy, but this basic morning routine may help you start the day on the right foot. Obviously, it takes more than a good breakfast and a sip of water to trade successfully. But the path is just as important as the end goal, so make sure you develop a solid morning routine before you begin your day in the often volatile world of financial trading.