Day trading is a tough business. You need to be up on the latest market trends, have a feel for where it is going and be able to execute trades quickly and efficiently. The first parts can be learned but you need to have the right tools in order to pull of the last part. The right day trading platform is absolutely necessary to making a career out of it.
Within the day trading community, Ameritrade has a mixed reputation. The cost of commissions is the most common complaint about the platform, which can reach as high $9.99 per trade. That can be a real killer on the day trader’s bottom line.
To be a successful day trader, you need to really understand and employ risk management. There is nothing good coming from a swashbuckling day trader. Controlling your risk is part of the game. That comes from getting a lot of screen time and learning how the trends actually work in real time. It also come from figuring out how to use stop loss orders and limit orders to keep your trades under control. Keeping a bad trade from getting worse is key to coming up with a workable and profitable living as a day trader.
Ameritrade offers its Thinkorswim platform as a leg up in the day trading game. It has a robust research section that offers more than quality information on markets, trends and companies. Streaming financial news can also be a boon to traders looking to participate in news trading or just staying on top of trends throughout the day.
For lower level traders that need to have their hands held a bit, Thinkorswim can offer a paper trading account that allows you test out trades and strategies in real time. That is valuable for trying to figure out an idea before it becomes real. It allows practice. In the forex or options market, the ability to test out trades is very valuable. The market moves so fast that being able to follow along with virtual trades allows you to get good and experience before risking real, actual money.
Day trading is really a hunt for volatility. Ameritrade can help you on that quest with daily watchlists and community chat rooms that allow you to interact with other traders and watch market reactions in real time. That type of intelligence is very valuable.
For newer traders, the education center is going to be a big draw. Watching videos of strategies in action and instructor explaining terms is helpful for novice traders. Trading demos are a tool that can help take your mind from an abstract level of understanding to complete cognitive acceptance of a concept.
Thinkorswim also has a mobile trading app that works on Apple and Android devices. That allows part time traders to keep up with their doings while they are at work or on the go. The portability of trading platforms allows more people to enter the market and make moves.