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Can Day Trading be profitable for retail?

  #53 (permalink)

Legendary Market Wizard
Houston, TX
 
Trading Experience: Advanced
Platform: XTrader
Broker/Data: Advantage Futures
Favorite Futures: Energy
 
Posts: 2,968 since Dec 2013
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Trading is not easy. In fact it's actually very very difficult. There's a lot of people that think it is easy, and as they say "a fool and his money are soon parted". You originally asked "Can Day Trading be profitable for retail?". As some people came in and said yes it's possible, your question then morphed into "Can Day Trading be profitable for retail, with not more than 20 trades/Instrument a day, all trades closed before market close, must have poor infrastructure and be paying high commission costs?" The answer to that is yes it's possible, and yes some people do it, but in reality the majority do not. the reality and the dream are very different, that doesn't mean it's impossible. Is Kevin profitable. Yes I believe so. Am I profitable. Yes definitely. Would i consider Kevin or myself to be retail noobs daytrading through a low end broker. Hell No.

Kevin has an "Ask Me Anything" thread on this site. Maybe you should read that. Kevin has lots of people who have taken his class that I think would now describe themselves as successful algo traders. Do they day trade and close every position every night? As Kevin said the style is more swing trading so probably not - so maybe they aren't the people you are looking for. Are they part time traders that has made this work for them though. Most definitely.

So,
Are there part time, under capitalized, generally uneducated, day traders that consistently make money in both bull and bear markets? Maybe, but they are few and far between.
Are there part time traders, that have spent years studying trading and markets, that understand risk, that make a few choice (often swing) trades and consistently make money. Yes I believe so.
Are there full time, work from home traders, that have been trading for years, that make enough money to live off. Yes definitely.

But,
Are there part time, generally uneducated (other than reading a few books) successful surgeons. Probably no, none.
Are there part time. well-educated semi-retired Dr's, that are still successful surgeons. Yes probably.
Are there full time Dr's, who have their own practices, that are very successful surgeons. Yes definitely.

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