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Beginners Guide to ASX Day Trading (Australia)
Lynne
2020-04-24 1447

The Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) is one of the world’s leading financial market exchanges, operating markets for a large range of asset classes that include stocks/equities, fixed income instruments and commodities. 


Viewed as a global exchange leader, the ASX ranks among the top five exchanges worldwide with a total market capitalisation of around $2 trillion.


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Day Trading on the ASX


Day trading is the practice of making profits through the daily buying and selling of forex, commodities, derivatives, CFDs and shares. Positions are closed at the end of the day with the intention of starting fresh the following morning when the markets open.


The practice of day trading is a skill that takes time, focus and dedication to education, along with a specific mindset. The process involves taking advantage of small micro-movements in the market through fast decisions that require a large number of trades. 


The ASX offers many products for trade, including shares, indices, bonds, hybrid securities, ETFs, ETPs, managed funds, warrants, options, index derivatives, interest rate derivatives, grains derivatives, energy derivatives, and market-making arrangements.  While some of these are longer-term investments, many appeal to day traders seeking to make profits on daily market volatility.


7 Steps to ASX Day Trading (Australia)


Following are steps day traders can take to engage in day trading on the ASX Australia:


Step 1:  Choose the Right Broker


To trade with an exchange you must use a broker. Choosing the right broker involves an assessment of each broker’s transaction fees, platform features and security measures.


● Clarify your needs


Trading platforms vary between brokers, so before you start, take a moment to figure out what is most important to you in a trading platform. Your investment goals and trading experience will help you make the best decision. 


● Broker Fees


Fees are a very important consideration for day traders that make a large number of trades because multiple transactions may cut into their profits if fees are high. 


● Margin Trading


Margin trading involves obtaining credit provided by the broker that enables the trader to take large positions. It offers the large advantage of increased profits while at the same time magnifying losses, making it appropriate for experienced investors only.


● Deposit and Withdrawal Procedures


Deposit and withdrawal procedures for moving funds into and out of a brokerage account are particularly important for many traders. Prior to setting up an account, many traders should carefully review the deposit, withdrawal, and funds settlement terms of the broker under consideration.


● Customer Service


Customer support for most brokerages is offered through several ways that can include telephone, email or online chat. Online reviews often provide useful information from other users regarding brokerage customer support.


● Regulation


Along with all the considerations mentioned above is investor safety and security. It is very important to choose a broker that is registered with the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) - Australia's integrated corporate, markets, financial services and consumer credit regulator.


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Step 2: Choosing the best markets for day trading in Australia


The most popular day trading markets globally are forex, futures, CFDs and stocks. The ASX offers many of these investment instruments including shares, bonds, indices, ETFs, hybrid securities, ETPs, warrants, managed funds, options, interest rate derivatives, index derivatives, grains derivatives, market-making arrangements and energy derivatives. 


Trading hours at the ASX commence at 10:00 a.m. and end at 4:00 p.m., Monday to Friday.


On trading days, pre-opening takes place between 7:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m. and during this time brokers can enter orders into the system online, which are queued according to price-time priority. The actual trades do not take place until the market officially opens.


Stocks/Shares


There are over 2000 stocks listed on the ASX, giving investors the opportunity to buy part ownership of an ASX-listed company.


Futures/CFDs


Futures and are very popular with day traders. They are an agreement between a buyer and a seller to buy or sell a certain amount of an underlying asset at a specific price on a future date. 


Indices


Day trading indices are similar to share trading and are confined to the restrictions of operating hours of the market. The main difference is that when someone trades indices they are trading on a group of shares rather than just one company. 



Step 3: Trading Preparation


Every trader has a different routine to prepare for the day ahead. Many take time to review the previous day’s trades or any trades that were left open.


Traders also go over any news to get updated on the current events of the market, including reading any news they believe may cause market volatility. 


This will enable them to gauge overall investment sentiment for the day and to make a plan based on predictions for how the markets will move. This should form part of an overall trading strategy for taking immediate action once the trading session opens. 



Step 4: Determine The Best Day Trading Times


Unlike the 24-hour forex market, the ASX has a set amount of trading times as mentioned above. According to their website, pre-opening starts at 7 a.m., the official opening is at 10 a.m., and markets close at 4 p.m. 



Step 5: Learn Trading Psychology


Trading psychology is very important for traders, especially with regards to controlling their emotions so they make rational decisions. 


Trading in general requires a set of skills concerning the ability to evaluate a company's fundamentals, determine stock trends and other technical skills. Day traders require some of these, however the most important is their mindset and being able to contain emotion, think quickly and exercise discipline. 


Many experienced traders will say that the two main emotions to control are fear and greed. The inability to keep these two checked may result in making snap decisions that can result in serious losses. The understanding of these factors will give traders the discipline and objectivity required to take advantage of market conditions and to make the best decisions. 



Step 6: Create a Day Trading Strategy


There are many strategies for day trading. Here is a brief summary of all the elements a trader must take into consideration:


1. Set Risk Level


The first step is to set a level of risk and determine the maximum loss threshold per trade or per trading day. For many this ranges from around 1% to 5% of the portfolio, meaning that if they lose that amount at any point, they will close their positions, take a break, and re-assess their plan. 


2. Set Goals


Goal setting is very important in trading. It involves the setting of realistic profit targets, risk/reward ratios, and the minimum risk/reward a trader will accept. 


3. Create Exit Rules


Prior to commencing trading, most traders clarify buy signals and exit rules. Losses are inevitable for most traders and professional traders will lose more trades than they win. Through the management of their profits and losses, they can average out their earnings and make a profit. 


Prior to entering a trade, the trader must know their exit points and write down the stop loss point and follow that plan. Accordingly, each trade should have a profit target, and the trader should sell a portion of their position at that point, moving the stop loss for the rest of the position if desired. 


4. Create Entry Rules


Since exits are more important than entries, this rule comes next. The trader needs to clarify a good point to enter a trade based upon any predetermined signals or events. Many automated trades are based upon these rules, and the goal of the day trader is to try to beat the other players in the market. 


5. Performance Analysis


At the close of the trading day, it is important for traders to record their trades in a journal in order to analyze their strategy. That is outlined in the next step. 


Step 7: Develop A Day Trading System and Journal


A day trading journal is a record used by traders to keep track of their trades so they can reflect upon their movements and evaluate their performance.


There are many reasons to keep a trading journal, including giving the trader the ability to identify weak and strong points in their strategy and to keep themselves accountable. This allows them to perfect their strategy and to implement their plans consistently.


How to Create a Trading Journal?


Creating a trading journal is fairly straightforward. Most traders use a spreadsheet or notebook to record information about the specific trades, the dates/times traded, and the success of those trades. 


The trading journal is a very important first step taken when traders begin learning to trade, and it is vital to testing different strategies and finding the ideal individualized plan suitable for each trader.


How Much Money Do I Need to Become a Day Trader?


This is a very difficult question to answer and depends on the type of trading. Recall how the main difference between day trading and investment is the time frame. 


Day trading focuses on short-term investing to generate maximum profits while investing focuses on long-term investing to build wealth. This often requires a very large amount of capital in order to leverage micro-movements in the market. 


Making profits in day trading depends on the amount available to trade and this is highly dependent on each investor. 


What percent of day traders are successful?


According to an article in Forbes magazine, the success rate for day traders is estimated to be around only 10%. In the article, Cory Michael at Vantage Point Trading estimates that only “1% of [day] traders really make money”.  


How much do you make on average by day trading?


Profits made by day traders vary widely according to skill and the capital available to invest. The markets traded, instruments used, leverage employed and many other factors determine the upside potential of day trading activity. 


Why do Day Traders Fail?


According to many experts, a lack of knowledge about the stock market is the reason most traders fail. Research, analysis, and many other factors tie into the success levels of traders, and all these come with time and trading experience. 


It’s always wise to consider practice trading with a demo account at a suitable brokerage before committing any real money to day trading.


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Note: CFDs are a leveraged product and can result in the loss of your entire capital. You should consider whether you can afford to take a high risk of losing money.



The content presented above, whether from a third party or not, is considered as general advice only.  This article does not contain and should not be construed as containing investment advice, investment recommendations, an offer of or solicitation for any transactions in financial instruments. Mitrade does not represent that the information provided here is accurate, current or complete. Mitrade is not a financial advisor and all services are provided on an execution only basis. Before making any investment decisions, you should seek advice from independent financial advisors to ensure you understand the risks.

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