One of the truisms of option trading is that you never stop learning. The moment you think you know everything there is to know is the moment that you give up on the opportunity to keep increasing your earnings and enjoying your trading. Option education is something that never ends – it just morphs and changes as you gain more experience and learn to start making judgments for yourself. Choosing the right trading education courses depends upon knowing where you are on the sliding scale of experience and what you still need to learn in order to accomplish your goals. Where should you be getting your option education – and what should it cover? These suggestions for what you should be learning at each of the five stages of your options career can help you find courses that support your goals and help you limit your risk and boost your bottom line.
If you’re brand new to options trading and the stock market in general, you need a course that will teach you all the basics – terminology, definitions and how to get started with options trading. There are many websites out there that offer basic “self-help” option education, but it’s easy to get lost in all the information and give up in despair – or learn very bad habits. By all means, pick up a good book on options trading to help you get your feet wet, but don’t stop there. A comprehensive beginner options trading course will guide your learning and make sure that you don’t miss out on the important basics when you need to know them the most.
Ready to Trade
It’s much easier to understand a trading platform after you’ve taken a beginners’ trading course, so if you haven’t done that, sign up for one and get a basic understanding of options, how they work and what their uses are. Once you have the terminology, find an online trading site that offers you a good trading platform and allows you to test your trading systems and intuitions using historical data. What you learn through dummy trading is invaluable. The most important focus for your trading education at this point should include not only basic strategies, but on how to effectively use the trading platform software to set triggers, research stocks and find what you need.
You can’t stop learning once you’ve stepped into the fray and started making your own trades. At this point, look to fellow traders for advice, and find one or more good mentors to help you sharpen your trading skills. You should also start looking at more advanced trading strategies that offer higher returns, and learning how to fine-tune your risk management to provide a comfortable cushion in your account.
Advanced Trading Strategies and Systems
If you’re ready to step beyond using systems devised by others and try developing your own, it’s time to really dig into patterns, fundamental analysis and other factors that influence the market. Look for option education courses led by experienced, successful traders who will offer their market philosophies and experience along with more specific pointers.
Options Trading as a Risk Management Strategy
For some, the main interest in options trading is to provide a risk management strategy and a means to reduce risk and buffer losses. If that’s the case, look for courses offered by traditional stock market traders who use the options market to improve their position on the stocks they own and manage.
Option education is an ongoing process, but choosing the right courses, books and teachers for your needs is an important part of the process. Before you choose a specific type of trading education, take the time to evaluate your current level and define your goals, then choose courses that will teach you what you need to know.
Chris Robertson is an author of Majon International, one of the world’s MOST popular internet marketing companies on the web.
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