Since You Asked
Confused about some aspect of trading? Professional trader Don Bright of Bright Trading (www.stocktrading.com), an equity trading corporation, answers a few of your questions. To submit a question, post it on the Stocks & Commodities website Message-Boards. Answers will be posted there, and selected questions will appear in future issues of S&C.
I am trying to learn more about technical analysis and trading in general. I am getting better, I think, but would like to have a decent explanation of pivot points. I see them on various websites, including yours, but I don’t know how to use them. Can you help?— Techtrdr201
I’m glad you have decided to learn more about technical analysis, and glad that you’re reading the best magazine in the field, Technical Analysis ofStocks & Commodities. Now, let’s discuss pivot points.
I am a trader in India and was wondering if US firms allow traders who are not US residents or citizens to trade US equities. I am interested in trading stocks on the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ. I have heard of Canadian firms in India, but none from the US. — Sundara
Thanks for the question, and yes, I am aware of some Canadian firms that have expanded into India and Asia. From what I have been told, this is now being curtailed somewhat, but I am not sure why.
I have been trading for many years, but I have some concerns regarding my broker. Although I was promised something called “portfolio margin,” which was supposed to have a leverage of six times my capital, I have received margin calls when using a much lower amount. Should I pursue other alternatives, such as trading with a firm like yours? How does your firm, and others like yours, monitor the risks taken by its traders? How do you ensure that traders don’t blow out a lot of money? I have heard horror stories from some traders. Am I missing something here? I hope you can clarify this for me.—Natofan
You have good reasons to be concerned, and your questions address some things that are often misunderstood.
Let’s talk about portfolio margin first.
I have a question regarding dividend plays. I’ve heard the term many times but don’t understand it. I realize that when you hold stocks, you receive dividends, but what is meant by the “short-term play?”—Tradwinr22
Good question, and oftentimes a good strategy. I can use a recent (March 2013) example to show you what short-term plays are.
I am part of a small group of traders and investors, most of us pretty new to the business. We spend a lot of time doing research, checking charts, fundamentals, technicals, and all the rest. A newcomer to our group is telling us we should really just focus on analyst reports, because it’s easier to rely on these “experts.” What do you and your team of traders rely on? —Jeric
Let’s go through the list, and then I’ll answer your question regarding analysts directly.