Monday, September 21, 2009

Survival Kit For Newbie Investors - Mind Game

Last post was dedicated to Laws of Nature (http://archana-archdeb.blogspot.com/2009/09/starter-kit-for-newbie-investor-greed.html). Last in this series we will now analyse Mind Game. You may think I am kidding, but stock investing is basically a mind game. It tests your character and strength of your mental fabric. If you have any doubt then as you read on you will realize the veracity of my statement. For the time being, simply promise yourself to follow the rules which govern your thinking while investing.
  • Rule # 1. Do not change your mind after placing the stop loss order. Many traders who had wisely put a stop loss order, cancelled the same once they saw that the market is going against them. Some shift the stop loss level to try and give time for market to move in the desired direction. This is a seriously flawed behaviour and may result in great losses. It is seen that 90% of the time a trader will be a winner if he maintains the original stop loss level and refrains from cancelling it. When you cancel a stop loss order you are merely hoping against hopes that market will reverse its direction and move in the direction of your trade. This can have a disastrous outcome.

  • Rule # 2. Be firm in your mind while initiating a trade. You must decide to enter a trade after having given due thought to it. It must be done after you are fully satisfied, having done adequate research/consultation. How can you buy stocks when you don't buy vegetables without making elaborate enquiries about the right price!! But once you have arrived at an informed decision then be firm in your thinking and do not change your mind or cancel the trade without adequate reasons.

  • Rule # 3. Should the market reverse direction never let a profit run into a loss of capital. This can be done by raising the stop loss level progressively. This system of progressively increasing the stop loss level will ensure that you roll your profits and cut losses. But the basic mistake that traders have been doing since time immemorial is that they cut their profits short out of fear, and roll their losses on the hope that the market will move in the desired direction. This is a serious mistake and should be avoided at all cost. Be resolute in your mind and use your stop loss orders effectively, and progressively increase them to stay with the trend, till the stop loss order is triggered.