Day Trading Advice: Identifying and Exiting Losers

by Mike Reed

The majority of traders are looking for entries with a very high probability of success. Web sites and book stores are loaded with day trading advice to fill this “need.” Some of it’s pretty good entry advice. A lot of it is average, which is actually not a good thing. But good or average, if they are leading you to believe that “If you can find better entries, you’d be making money.” Than this is poor day trading advice, it’s a lie and they are taking your money and they are taking you for a ride.

Well, it’s time to stop believing the lie. Stop paying for “sure thing” entry methods.

I write a market newsletter each day, giving my "game plan" for the next trading day. I'm as specific as possible including Support and Resistance levels that I will be buying and selling against, which provides you with great trade set ups nearly everyday.

I’ve been day trading futures for 27 years and I’ve developed a strategy that makes money consistently. I don’t promise overnight success, anyone who is really serious about wanting to learn day trading, realizes that it’s not a get rich quick profession. Yes, my method does include great entries, but most losing traders have decent entry strategies. My experienced day trading advice doesn’t focus as much on entries as it does on exits…

Offense doesn’t win this ballgame, defense does!

If you’re going to make it day trading the stock market, and actually be successful at it, you must understand why this is, and then you’ll program your reflexes to follow your knowledge.

Think of it this way…large corporations spend millions of dollars inventing boatloads of products that are worthless. But in the early stages of research and development, the company can’t tell which products will make money. If they take all their new products to market, and only a few sell, the few won’t offset the losers, and the company will go under.

Most new companies (about 95% by some estimates) fail. The same is true of traders, they want to be successful, but just don’t know how to go about it, which day trading advice should they believe, and who’s just trying to take their money .

But there is an upside to all of this, successful companies know a secret. They find a way to identify their losers in the early stages… and close the projects down quickly before losing a lot of money in the marketing process.

As James Surowiecki puts it in his book, “The Wisdom of Crowds”

“…companies place huge bets on losers all the time. What makes a system successful is its ability to recognize losers and kill them quickly.”

The same is true of stock trading strategies. Experienced professional traders place bets on losers all the time, but they know how to identify losers and kill them quickly before much (if any) money is lost.

I close bad trades well before my hard stops are hit, but anyone can do that. But, you also have to recognize your losers early. Otherwise you’ll be killing your good trades along with the bad ones.

Every successful trader I’ve met has a way of getting out early on bad trades. If you are day trading support and resistance, I can teach you how I do it. You may be able to find a way to do it on your own, but it will probably take years. I’ve been trading for more than 27 years, and publishing my day trading advice on the internet since 1996.

No matter which route you take, identifying and exiting losers is the key to trading.

Mike Reed is author of TradeStalker's Support and Resistance Updates. Mike began trading the Market in 1982. When he got his start as a trader, Mike was plotting prices on paper tape as the internet had not yet been "born" as we know it today. Years of experience have really given him a feel for Market action. His support and resistance numbers have been published on the internet since 1996. He has a wide readership that includes day traders, floor traders, locals and hedge fund managers. His nightly trading plan, along with his support and resistance zones, are specific and accurate. He offers an unlimited free trial of his nightly TradeStalker Updates.- Copyright 2010 Mike Reed and

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