The process of evaluating companies, placing trades and reaping the rewards are much less complicated than even a few years ago. The prospect of losing all your hard-earned money is just as easy.

How do you learn to trade stocks successfully, without taking an absurd amount of time learning the craft?

A few steps must be accomplished before starting on your stock trading lifestyle. Start reading everything related to the markets and never stop. Learn all you can.

Technical or fundamental analysis, swing or day trade, which method should you choose? Look at the resources below. This information is only meant to be a starting point.

“How to Make Money in Stocks” by William J O’Neal. This book is less about trading and more about picking great companies. The CANSLIM method shows beginning investors what to look for in a great company.

“Technical Analysis of Stocks and Commodities” magazine. Hands down one of the best resources available, if you choose the technical method of investing.

Avoid any stock scheme promising overnight riches or winning the trading game. Investing your hard-earned money and reaping the rewards is not a game.

From the outset of your trading journey, start the process of choosing an online broker. There are hundreds of quality brokers. It is best to visit as many as possible and read what they have to offer.

Anyone can be successful trading stocks. It is vital to develop a winning attitude and trading style from day one. Stock markets are extremely volatile. One minute the NASDAQ is up a few points. Positive news breaks in London, and the market breaks to the upside. Are you making money or taking a lunch break? You must stay sharp. A positive attitude is integral to your stock trading success. Develop the following disciplines:

  • Patience; know what to expect from the market and never chase a hot stock. 
  • Discipline; believe in your trading system and never jump the gun. However, know when to pull the trigger on a trade. 
  • Be realistic with your expectations; you can not expect to invest $10 and make $100 on every trade. Develop long-term profit strategies with a shorter time frame. 
  • Alignment; develop your trading methodologies, then chart them at different time frames. Discover different alignments within your trading system.

Bring yourself up to speed quickly with the following stock trading courses:

  • Udemy: This is the largest online learning platform in the world. Learn everything from day trading, technical, and fundamental analysis to candlesticks. There are over 3500 different classes offered so pay close attention to the ratings. Some of the offerings are good, and others are not.
  • Online Trading Academy: If you are serious about getting up to speed trading stocks quickly, this is the online platform to use. You can concentrate your efforts fully online, in class, or both. You should be serious about your commitment to trading, as OTA can be expensive the deeper you go.

Choose Online Brokers

Investopedia is a great all-around resource for investing beginners. The site helps with choosing a broker and keeps you focused on aspects you may not have thought of, such as account minimums and fees.

  • Interactive Brokers: IB is by far the most comprehensive electronic market broker in the United States. Every financial asset is available for trading. The site has the lowest trading costs; however, the account minimum is high. Research resources are excellent.
  • Robinhood: One of the new kids on the block offering commission-free trading and no-account minimums. Research has a lot to be desired; however, the site is picking up steam as more people are signing up.
  • TD Ameritrade: This broker is full-service with excellent research and varied financial asset offerings available for trading. Everything you could ask for in a brokerage, they have it.

Put “stock trading for beginners” into a Google search, and the search giant returns over 25 million results. Online trading has advanced considerably, and governments are finally cracking down on the rampant fraud that was taking over the industry.

There are thousands of quality investment sites now in operation. Beginning stock traders should not get caught up in the perpetual search for the holy grail of investing. It does not exist.

Every good investing site states the same thing – choose companies with strong fundamentals in an uptrend. It is your job to choose the appropriate strategy, find the right company and a suitable timeframe for investment.

A Few Good Websites

The following is a shortlist of quality investing advice. A lot of the content is free. As you gain experience and money, consider the premium content.

  • The Motley Fool: This long-term stalwart of picking good companies, started as a simple investing site by Tom and David Gardner. The site is now one of the most successful on the internet and offers some of the best subscription investing content available.
  • Investors Business Daily: This website is the online outlet of William O’Neal’s CANSLIM investing methodology. The subscription-based site offers several premium lists to follow. IBD is a great resource for any level of investing experience.
  • Seeking Alpha: SA is one of the better, lesser-known investing sites. There are tons of free research on every stock from the three major exchanges. One of the best features is its free portfolio manager.
  • Zacks Investment Research: One of the online investing stalwarts, Zacks offers plenty of premium content to help beginning traders pick good stocks. The site offers several lists of great stocks.
  • Technical analysis of individual stocks is the method of choosing trends and stock direction based on charts and indicators. StockCharts is one of the very best sites to learn the craft of trading.

Trading stocks can be a richly rewarding pursuit, only if you are prepared.