Being new to trading, one will quickly find a massive number of resources available through books, software, and educational programs. Most will tease you with a few “free” resources but before you make your first dollar in the markets, they start asking for payment. While I have paid for a few courses and resources, I have discovered many of the best are free. The only thing you will be required to give is an email address. You can even set up a separate email for all these junk emails to go to. There is an immense amount of free resources for traders of all levels. You can stop looking because you found them!
FREE Resources for Traders
Don’t crack open your wallet until you know you are getting a good value. While you must spend money to make money, don’t overdo it at first. Try to make sure your trading profits exceed your expenses. Start with these free resources before you break the piggy bank open.
Trading Software & Platform
TD Ameritrade’s Thinkorswim platform offers free level 2 quotes. While most other brokerages charge up to $20 a month for this, TD Ameritrade has managed to offer it for free. Anyone can open an account and you can leave the funding of your account for later and still enjoy the free platform. The software runs nicely on a laptop and they also offer an app, but I have barely used it. If you do decide to trade with them, their commissions are now FREE. I use them along with E*Trade for the majority of my trading. When trading, I always have the thinkorswim platform up for the charting and level 2 quotes.
The trader checklist is a free 11-hour education guide for those who want to get serious about trading. The course concentrates on penny stocks and small accounts. It provides a scoring metric to determine what stocks are worth buying and which ones you can ignore. The course is given by Tim Sykes, who is well known in the industry for turning $12,000 into more than $5 million. I am a student of his and fully believe in his concepts.
There is a small downside for some. Tim, while being an expert in his field, can be extremely crude. Being a Marine, my skin is thick and I happily let his cussing roll right off my shoulders. However, if you are more sensitive you might want to find another course. If you have small children around, consider using earphones. The information is excellent and I hope to demonstrate this with solid profits in the near future.
Dave Mabe tweets out a watch-list every morning to all his followers. He provides many stocks that are moving or likely to move based on news or the previous day’s action. Dave is a long-time day trader who works for trade-ideas.com. Not all the stocks will fit with everyone’s trading style, but it is a great resource until you can learn how to make your own watch-lists.
Dave does some tweeting about the markets, local running groups and occasionally a good beer. I have never seen anything offensive in his feed so it is safe to say he is family-friendly. Please do remember that a watch-list is just that: a list of stocks to “watch.” A watch-list is NOT a recommendation to buy, it is just a list of stocks that are “in play” and could move in a favorable direction throughout the trading day. Typically for me, 80% of the stocks on my daily watch-list never move in the direction I want and 90%+ I will not trade. A watch-list can and should evolve as the day progresses, I will typically add and remove several stocks from my watch-list throughout the trading day.
There are dozens of chat rooms available and most charge to get in. One in particular, though, is completely free, has an excellent moderator and is open to everyone! The moderator even shares all his own trades in real-time. Trade-ideas.com sells trading software but offers the chatroom for free as a marketing tool. You will need to give them your email to create an account but the rest is free! Make sure you have your sound on as, Barrie, a mild-mannered Canadian, calmly watches the market and tells you what he is looking for in the market. He is also very polite and I have never heard him cuss. Those Canadians sure do things differently!
Even as a free subscriber you are welcome to ask questions and offer input. If you want to see what it’s like to actually day trade full time, tune in around 9 am each morning and just observe. The perspectives and knowledge that is available in the room are incredible.
When to Pay
Now that I have given you plenty of free resources for traders, you may think you will never need to pay for anything. That may be true but I don’t know any full-time day traders who don’t pay for something. Whether it be special software or chat room access, you must treat trading like a business if you are going to take it seriously. Like any business, you must invest in your business if you expect it to be profitable in the long run. Just make sure you place limits on your spending and track expenses and profits to make sure you are getting a good value.
Final thoughts and Notes
This month the markets are in rough shape; traditionally, major crashes happen in October. The great depression stock market crash started on 10/24/1929. Black Monday was 10/19/1987. The great recession started on 10/11/2007. Be careful in these markets as things are choppy right now and history has a way of repeating itself. I’m not predicting a crash or anything like that, just a reminder to be mindful, no one knows what the markets will do tomorrow.
The resources listed above are what I use and have found value in. I’m sure there are tons more out there. I try to limit the noise and keep my posts short and only provide resources that I personally use or have used. Feel free to share your own in the comments below.
Thanks for reading and happy trading! Follow me on twitter for all trades, live!