Monday, July 28, 2014

Forex Scalping - Extensive Guide on How to Scalp Forex

Forex scalping is a popular method involving the quick opening and liquidation of positions. The term “quick” is imprecise, but it is generally meant to define a timeframe of about 3-5 minutes at most, while most scalpers will maintain their positions for as little as one minute.
The popularity of scalping is born of its perceived safety as a trading style. Many traders argue that since scalpers maintain their positions for a brief time period in comparison to regular traders, market exposure of a scalper is much shorter than that of a trend follower, or even a day trader, and consequently, the risk of large losses resulting from strong market moves is smaller. Indeed, it is possible to claim that the typical scalper cares only about the bid-ask spread, while concepts like trend, or range are not very significant to him. Although scalpers need ignore these market phenomena, they are under no obligation to trade them, because they concern themselves only with the brief periods of volatility created by them.

Is Forex Scalping for you?

Forex scalping is not a suitable strategy for every type of trader. The returns generated in each position opened by the scalper is usually small; but great profits are made as gains from each closed small position are combined. Scalpers do not like to take large risks, which means that they are willing to forgo great profit opportunities in return for the safety of small, but frequent gains. Consequently, the scalper needs to be a patient, diligent individual who is willing to wait as the fruits of his labors translate to great profits over time. An impulsive, excited character who seeks instant gratification and aims to “make it big” with each consecutive trade is unlikely to achieve anything but frustration while using this strategy.

Attention is essential for the forex scalper

Scalping also demands a lot more attention from the trader in comparison to other styles such as swing-trading, or trend following. A typical scalper will open and close tens, and in some cases, more than a hundred positions in an ordinary trading day, and since none of the positions can be allowed to suffer great losses (so that we can protect the bottom line), the scalper cannot afford to be careful about some, and negligent about some of his positions. It may appear to be a formidable task at first sight, but scalping can be an involving, even fun trading style once the trader is comfortable with his practices and habits. Still, it is clear that attentiveness and strong concentration skills are necessary for the successful forex scalper. One does not need to be born equipped with such talents, but practice and commitment to achieve them are indispensable if a trader has any serious intention of becoming a real scalper.

Automated trading systems

Scalping can be demanding, and time-consuming for those who are not full-time traders. Many of us pursue trading merely as an additional income source, and would not like to dedicate five six hours every day to the practice. In order to deal with this problem, automated trading systems have been developed, and they are being sold with rather incredible claims all over the web. We do not advise our readers to waste their time trying to make such strategies work for them; at best you will lose some money while having some lessons about not trusting anyone’s word so easily. However, if you design your own automated systems for trading (with some guidance from seasoned experts and self-education through practice) it may be that you shorten the time which must be dedicated to trading while still being able to use scalping techniques. And an automated forex scalping technique does not need to be fully automatic; you may hand over the routine and systematic tasks such as stop-loss and take-profit orders to the automated system, while assuming the analytical side of the task yourself. This approach, to be sure, is not for everyone, but it is certainly a worthy option.

Some words on trade sizes and forex scalping

Finally, scalpers should always keep the importance of consistency in trade sizes while using their favored method. Using erratic trade sizes while scalping is the safest way to ensure that you will have a wiped-out forex account in no time, unless you stop practicing scalping before the inevitable end. Scalping is based on the principle that profitable trades will cover the losses of failing ones in due time, but if you pick position sizes randomly, the rules of probability dictate that sooner or later an oversized, leveraged loss will crash all the hard work of a whole day, if not longer. Thus, the scalper must make sure that he pursues a predefined strategy with attention, patience and consistent trade sizes. This is just the beginning, of course, but without a good beginning we would diminish our odds of success, or at least reduce our profit potential.

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