Cut your losses when trading
Did you know that many successful traders win less than 50% of their trades? Yes, top traders know that they can be VERY successful winning only
40% of the time.
How can that be you ask. Simple, really. They are truly following the old adage of Cut Your Losses and Let Your Profits Run. Let's see how this might
Suppose you had a stock pick, and it hit your stop loss at 98% of your entry price, which gives you a loss. You pick another stock, and again, it hits
your stop loss, for another 2% ding to your account. Third time's the charm, and your stock pick gains 15% before falling back and triggering your
trailing stop at 10% above your entry price. In other words, you made 10%.
In this example, you had two losers and one winner for a win/loss percentage of 33%, yet you are ahead by about 6%. You let your profits run and cut
your losses short.
It is not easy having more losers than winners, because you can easily find yourself with 5, 10 or even a string of 20 losses in a row. But those
numbers are deceptive, because each loss will be fairly small.
Think of it in terms of baseball. A player can have only a fair lifetime batting average and still be a great player if he hits a home run when he finally
does connect with the ball.
It takes confidence in yourself as a trader to work a stock trading system that only wins less than half the time. It's not easy to be wrong most of the
time. But that is why the market rewards such a strategy so highly, if it is done right.
In other words, don't dismiss a system out of hand because it has more losers than winners. As long as the average win is significantly larger than the
average loss, you can be very successful with such a system in the long run.
So keep this in mind as you are searching around for the right strategy for you. Many small losses and a few big winners can be much more profitable
then a lot of little winners and a few large losses that take it all back and then some.
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