All the Gear and No Idea

I get it.

When you get sucked into the addictive world of trading you start to think about your setup. If you don’t know what I mean by setup, I’m referring to your trading desk. Where you trade from.

There’s an egotistical culture in trading. The image. Flashy cars, suits, the bravado of telling everyone how right you were about your latest trade, an industry where instead of encouraging others and talking about the ups and downs of trading, most traders seem to want to cut off your head so that they can get theirs above it. Everyone you meet is adamant that their way is the right way. Even the traders who are losing money, which is of course, most of them.

It’s competitive.

It’s common to see beginner traders blow £3000 on software, maybe £1000 on a luxury work desk, another £3000 on a top specification PC with 6 screens. Only to find out after a few weeks of trading that actually they never use the software, the desk could have been any old thing because no one really sees it other than you, and that you could have easily made do with a laptop and one screen.

Now don’t get me wrong. Daytraders tracking multiple markets at once, who need their finger on the pulse the whole time else they miss a key signal need those screens.

But Trend Followers? Nah. It’s a complete waste of your capital. I did this very same thing. I spent £1000 on the software I never used, I bought a £600 desk specially to trade on, and I bought myself 3 screens. Only then I found I wanted to trade from coffee shops, or when I was staying with friends, and I couldn’t take the PC with me. It was impractical. So I bought a £300 laptop, used free software and used my lap as my desk.

After a few weeks I found I was always using the laptop. It was convenient. Flexible. I could trade from anywhere in the world providing I had a wifi connection. It was a lovely feeling.

I have no need for 6 screens. I only check my positions at the end of every day (unless i’m trading my 10 minute system). I have no need for expensive software I never use. I have no need for an expensive desk.

My point here isn’t that you should copy my setup. My point is, work out what you ‘actually’ need. Don’t be one of those guys or gals who jumps into this game thinking they need to splash the cash to “feel and look like a trader”. No one’s going to see it. Trading is a lonely experience.

No one cares what setup you have.

Save the money and use it as trading capital, or pay for some training. The ROI will be far more substantial than the ego boost you’ll get from sharing a picture of your trading desk on instagram.

You can trend follow an end of day system very simply with one screen, one computer or laptop, and your lap. Sitting on your sofa, with a cup of tea and your feet up. Trading is about making money, not burning it before you get started.

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