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Trader's Guide - A Journey of a Thousand Miles Begins With a Single Step

Trader's Guide - A Journey of a Thousand Miles Begins With a Single Step

Nick Cawley, Strategist

To start a journey in life, however difficult and long it may seem, you need to take the first step, and that step in trading is learning. There are no short cuts available if you are to achieve your goals. This article is not a short cut, but it will hopefully give you ideas, directions and areas to look at and master that will make your journey easier and more enjoyable - if you decide to take that step.

Three very different but equally important areas for traders to understand and master are fundamental and technical analysis and trader psychology. Mastering each discipline is essential in helping you make informed, timely and rigorously qualified trading decisions.

  • Fundamental analysis in the foreign exchange market for instance is a top-down look into financial markets using - but not exclusively - economic data, central bank guidance, global trade patterns, interest rate movements and shifts in political policies to help forecast future price moves.
  • Technical analysis on the other hand is ‘looking at charts’ using different analytical techniques and indicators over various time frames to try and identify historical patterns and trends that may help traders predict future price action.
  • Trader Psychology is the understanding of different emotions and how they affect your trading performance. Every trader has a different emotional make-up and it is important that you understand your strengths and weaknesses before you hit the trade button.

To begin your trading journey – from beginner all the way through to expert level – visit the

DailyFX Free Online Forex Trading University. Here you will find hundreds of constantly updated articles on fundamental and technical analysis and many, many more important topics that are an essential part of a trader’s tool box. This course is suitable for traders of all experience and background and each lesson can be easily referred to when required. Primarily a foreign exchange resource, the lessons and skill sets taught here can be transferred smoothly over to other major financial markets including global indices and all major classes of commodities.

This resource center covers all aspects of fundamental and technical analysis and digs deep into trader psychology to give you a more thorough understanding of markets and emotions.

We also produce regular videos for you to watch in your own time covering fundamental and technical analysis along with essential articles on risk management, lessons on avoiding common mistakes, becoming a better trader and a wide range of other trading-related topics. While admitting to bad practices is tough and against human nature, understanding why you make mistakes and what steps you can take to avoid making them again is required knowledge for all traders.

One of our most read blogs, which pulls together a wide range of these topics and may help you avoid a variety of common pitfalls, is a trader’s mea culpa - Three Things I Wish I Knew When I Started Trading Foreign Exchange.

When you fully understand these disciplines, you will need to know How to Combine Technical and Fundamental Analysis before entering any trade set-up.

When you are ready to make your first trade, it is essential to have a detailed trading plan to base and record your trades on. This will enable you to look back at trades you have made, detailing how and why you made them and what the outcome was, so you can learn from both profitable and loss-making trades.

Finally, to help you keep up-to-date with market moves and sentiment shifts, we run a wide range of webinars every day covering the most important market releases and movements to help traders have a more in-depth understanding of markets. We also produce a comprehensive and real-time economic calendar, so you can see all major economic data releases on one page.

And if you are still with me, we also produce a real-time Retail Sentiment Indicator that shows market positioning and what it means for traders.

We are interested in your trading strategies and views. You can share your thoughts and analysis with us using the comments section at the end of the article or you can contact the author via email at nicholas.cawley@ig.com or via Twitter @nickcawley1.

--- Written by Nick Cawley, Analyst

DailyFX provides forex news and technical analysis on the trends that influence the global currency markets.

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