Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Betting on the Stock Market

Guest article

Successful traders and successful gamblers tend to fit a similar profile, with many of the same skills utilized in each to book a profit over the long run. They both tackle high-risk, high-reward situations where the ability to analyze and piece together information is crucial to success, as well as having control over the emotions and rely on reason instead of gut instincts when plying their different trades.

It ís possible to go on a huge winning streak playing online roulette and win thousands of dollars, but eventually the odds will catch up to you if you're just betting big on black 29 every spin of the wheel. Some gamblers, though, can legitimately profit in the long run, especially if they're playing poker or betting on sports. Since they're competing against other players and not against the house, poker and sports betting is much less like gambling and much more like investing in the market.

Investors have to be willing to take on risk every time they open or close a position, and they're effectively betting that their analysis of a situation is better than what the street things. If an investor believes that a stock is oversold and a great value, when they take a position they're placing a wager on their own research and analytic skills. Not every trade is a winner, just like a successful poker player doesn't win every hand, but picking slightly more winners than losers is enough to amass substantial profits over time.

One key trait for both traders and gamblers is the ability to control their emotions, especially in the face of heavy losses. The greatest traders in the world will have stretches where every position they take goes against them, and this can last for days, weeks, or even months. The key is to keep control over your emotions and avoid the temptation to try to get all your losses back with a big, ill-advised trade or bet. Chasing losses has doomed many gamblers and traders alike, so being able to always stay in control and have a plan is crucial to success.

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