Bottom lines suffer when marginal trades are taken, game plans are not followed, and “unforced errors” are made. Luckily, traders can learn to recognize those personal behavioral patterns that lead to loss of focus and concentration, in addition to other bad habits.
Both experienced and aspiring traders spend a great deal of time trying to recognize patterns in the markets – charts and indicators on multiple time frames, seasonal tendencies around specific times of the month or year, sentiment and flow of funds data. Clearly, there are many different ways to skin a cat. By analyzing patterns, a trader is looking for a compelling reason to initiate a trade or to exit an existing one. Markets are monitored for subtle shifts in the basic supply-and-demand equation, and once an “initial condition” is detected that indicates a spot where there is a probable edge, the game simply becomes a matter of setting up an entry trigger, defining initial risk and then learning how to manage a trade properly in response to the market’s actions. The trader manages the trade by watching for confirmation or non-confirmation.