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Day Trading vs. Swing Trading

Day Trading vs. Swing Trading


Many people feel that swing trading and day trading are the same type of trading however, looking deeper you will see they are different in many aspects.

Day trading is the trading style day traders utilize to possibly enter and exit the same or different stocks, potentially several times during any one given trading session. Day traders generally look for a potential trend, long or short, for volatile stocks, throughout the trading day. Once spotted, the trader will monitor the activity of the stock, review daily historical movement for potential trends and when certain key points are reached per the chart, make their move. Day traders in general aim for large runs once they enter a position however, the main goal is to enter, make a profit and exit before the position turns against them. Basically, get in, make some money then run. Depending upon the overall trading pattern of a stock, a day trader may look to enter the same stock again, at some point during the day. Day traders will look at an unlimited number of stocks during any one trading day. Positions taken are not limited to a long or short position but, on the trend of the stocks they may be monitoring. Day traders must be watching their positions constantly and will frequently set trailing stops to control their positions. There are no certain stocks that a day trader will monitor. Most day traders will take a gander at any stock that trades within their trading price range that shows sign of momentum. Day traders run a tight ship by being all cash, at the end of any trading day. No overnight holds is a rule that all professional day traders utilize. Day traders tend to team up with a day trading service to allow the service to be their eyes while the trader makes the individual trades based on their own pre-defined trading strategy.

Swing trading on the other hand allows swing traders to decide to enter a position, long or short, based on information obtained per a recommendation from a swing trading service. Swing traders generally have a specific set of stocks, maybe five to ten different stocks that have been noted for potential moves – long or short. Swing traders will load this list or basket of stocks and monitor trading activity for a position long or short that has been noted per, the swing trading service in which they are using. Once the service notifies the swing trader of a potential long or short position they are watching for, the trader will load the symbol and begin watching the chart as well. Once a position is entered, most swing traders utilize targets to help them determine when to take profit, loss or a stop loss. Many swing traders will immediately set their stop loss, trailing stop and/or profit target, after a position has been entered. Swing traders tend to focus on only a certain basket of stocks in an attempt to learn their trading pattern, over the period of a week. Tracking a trend allows the swing trader to enter the same stock again over the period of a week but, as the week is coming to an end, swing traders are prepared to be all cash by the closing bell on Wall Street and all positions are closed.

July 2011


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