Stocks and Commodities Magazine

How many futures markets to follow?

Should I focus on one market, or scan several markets for opportunities?

The answer to this question largely depends on the strategy used and the time frame you are trading in. For instance, a daytrader is likely to have developed specific technical trading guidelines to trigger entry and exit signals. However, not all markets are created equally — and what works in one may not work in another.

Accordingly, to day trade multiple markets it might be necessary to implement slightly different trading parameters for each symbol traded. In addition, it can often be difficult to follow multiple markets on short time frames. Unlike position traders, the difference between profit and loss for a day trader can be a few short minutes, or even seconds. On the other hand, a position trader, particularly an option trader, would likely find an advantage in the ability to diversify his speculations among multiple markets. Unlike daytraders, position traders have the luxury of having ample reaction time and less hands-on monitoring. Therefore, a position trader can likely monitor a handful of markets simultaneously.

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