Understanding how to implement Forex trading money management to grow your trading account is essential to the success of all traders. However, many beginning traders are largely unaware of some or most of the basic concepts of effective Forex money management, and this is a major reason why so many traders fail to make money over the long-term in the markets.
This article will cover five topics that every trader should be keenly aware of in order to grow their trading account as efficiently as possible. For more information on each of the five topics discussed below, check out the links contained within each topic. You should use this article as a starting point to understand Forex trading money management, and refer back to as needed to solidify your comprehension of each topic discussed.
– How much should I risk on a trade?
I get a lot of emails from traders asking me how much they should risk per trade, or what percentage of their trading account they should risk per trade. Unfortunately, there is really no “concrete” answer to this question because there are a lot of variables that are different from one trader to the next. A good place to start when trying to determine how much to risk per trade is to honestly answering this question: how much money do you have as disposable income that you can realistically afford to lose?
I find that many beginning traders fund their trading accounts with money they really shouldn’t be risking in the markets, and if they don’t initially make this mistake, they make later down the road after blowing out their first account. So, first off, you should never risk any money in the markets that is not truly disposable, and by truly disposable I mean “fun money”, money you don’t need for any other purpose besides entertainment. I am not implying trading is entertainment, I am just trying to convey the point that you should only trade with money you truly do not
need. Doing this will start you on an “even” emotional playing field, because you will have no emotional attachment to your trading money.
Next, when determining how much you should risk on a trade, always think in terms of dollars risked, not in pips. The notion that a trader should think in terms of pips instead of dollars is simply not conducive to effective Forex trading money management. Pips are basically irrelevant because one trader could risk the same amount of pips as another trader but they could have drastically different dollar amounts at risk, this is a result of position sizing and will be discussed below.
In my own personal approach I take a more discretionary approach to how much I will risk on any given trade, this is contrary to what the popular Forex web presence might say. I typically risk a set amount of dollars per trade, rather than a set risk percentage, this approach works for me because I have mastered my trading edge, which is price action, and so I know exactly what I am looking for in the markets. Also, because I trade with purely disposable income, I have no problem risking a set dollar amount on a price action trading setup that I feel 100% confident in. For more on this approach please click on the link in the previous paragraph.
– Risk reward
Risk reward should be thought of as the “workhorse” of money management, the proper implementation of risk reward is how professional traders make money.