Exit is the most difficult thing in trading, most of your profitability will depend on it.
Many studies have proved that even a random entry could generate some profit with a great exit.
There is of course no general answer to any specific question. My suggestion is just to spent a lot of time analyzing potential trades. Collect statistics about what seems to be relevant (in terms of indicators, market moves etc... depending on what your trading is based) and analyze them. This data would give you what is the probable best exit strategy for your system.
It took me 2 or 3 days to design the entry and it took me 5 months to find the exit strategy and I'm still working on it. My personal exit strategy is based on price patterns + time + standard deviation and is much more complex than my entry strategy.
R.I.P. Olivier Terrier (aka "Okina"), 1969-2016.
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These three observations are all saying the same thing, in slightly different words, and they're all totally correct, of course.
Here's the thing (to say it in considerably more words): you need a reason to enter a trade. For most of us, the "natural/normal position" in trading is to be flat. Whatever your reason is, to be in the trade, you might want to exit when it no longer holds good?
I see people entering trades purely (or almost purely) according to "indicators", and that tends to make it less clear, I think. I suspect their perspective is one of "I entered because this indicator-pattern has an edge, and the pattern arose, so I needed to enter, to exercise my edge", but this is slightly sloppy thinking, I think ... or at least incomplete thinking: an indicator-driven entry isn't a trading method. It's only an entry-method. For it genuinely to have an edge, it has to have clearly defined trade-management and exit rules, as well. If the exit rules are going to be rule-driven and codified as well (I don't necessary mean "automated"), then they also need to be researched, developed, tested, proven, and all the rest of it.
The reality is that no exit method is ever going to be perfect, in the sense that there are always going to be occasions (and perhaps this will apply to many/most trades) when - with hindsight - some other exit method would have been better.
This doesn't matter.
What matters is to research and develop exit rules which are profitable, overall, which make sense most of the time, which don't lose out on too many big moves and which close the trade often enough before it turns into loss, and which suit your trading-style and are at least relatively easy to use.
These are among the exit methods I've tried, over the years:-
Trailing stops being hit (not my choice, now)
Using a time factor of closing after a certain time-period
Heikin-Ashi candle color-changes (often on different speeds of chart from the one I used to open the trade)
Parabolic SAR methods (their originally intended use, I think?)
Sizes of apparent retracements
Donchian channels and related methods (e.g. closing a long trade after the lowest low of "x" periods has been reached, where "x" is some usually smallish number)
Candle/bar patterns making me suspect a reversal's likely
Trailing a stop just beyond the Kijun Sen line above/under the position of the third-previous bar/candle (I find this quite promising for intraday trading, at the moment, and am certainly far more interested in closing trades according to Ichimoku principles than in opening them that way)
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Morning folks ..when 2 exit..i find if you stay with your daily plan entry/exit lvls stops/limit -/+ ..what is key is not 2 get emotionally attached ..easier said than done ..example ES_F 81/84s so stop would be 85s for seller's and 80 for buyers ..tradi g key intraday lvls helps i find has it keeps emotions in check ..buying were majority are buyer's so quiet naturally here traders cover to..vice versa in sellers area were buyers close ..great day folks ..short at 2008/9stop at 2012 HOD future's. ..not advice..my trade and thoughts..dyor
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