Only a Full-time Professional Can Make Money in the Markets

Plenty of professionals make money as traders or full-time investors. If this game is truly made up of winners taking money from losers, how can a part-time amateur with a small account and limited time for analysis be expected to profit? It’s easy: focus.

One of the most successful traders I know is a person in the state of Arkansas who does nothing but focus on trading stocks in a specific retail stock. I won’t say which one, but it’s very, very large. He knows the company inside and out, and trades nothing but options and stock on this particular big box store, where you can get anything and everything. He’s been doing this for years and doing well at it. As a side note, he doesn’t work for the company — he just happens to live where it’s based, and he’s watched it emerge as one of the largest companies in the world.

If you work in a particular industry, focus on the stocks in that industry. You already have a leg up on the competition because you have a fundamental knowledge of the industry through experience, which is something that many traders will never gain. For instance, if you work for a regional bank, find a handful of similar banks to focus on, or if you work for a construction company, focus on the companies that supply to builders. By narrowing your focus, you may just find a small niche where you can ...

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