Solitude Is a Trader’s Enemy

11/11/2011 3:30 pm EST

Focus: STRATEGIES

Robb Reinhold

Principal, Maverick Trading

Those who trade alone can—and should—take certain steps to enlist others and stay disciplined and accountable, explains trader Robb Reinhold.

Most retail traders trade at home alone, but there are some risks and maybe some benefits to that as well. 

Our guest today is Robb Reinhold of Maverick Trading to talk about that. So Robb, let’s talk about the pitfalls of trading alone. You call it “solitary trading.” 

Solitary trading, exactly. The average retail trader, they sit at home, they have their monitors, their keyboard, and they have their thoughts. That’s it. 

If you go to a professional firm where there are professional traders, they are not by themselves; they are not having their own thoughts.

They have a network around them. They have people looking over their shoulder. They have people critiquing them, people managing their risk for them. They basically have “big brother” looking over them to make sure that they don’t screw it up. 

That is what the solitary trader at home doesn’t have; no accountability.

So how do you battle that? What do you do to correct that?

I always talk about having the people around you help. If you have a spouse, you could tell them, “Hey, here are the rules I need to follow: I have decided I am not going to make any more than two trades every day.” 

Have your spouse come in and look at your trading sheet, and tell them if you have made more than two trades that day, the punishment is this.
Now, of course, none of us likes to be punished. Everyone likes to be able to live life how they want, but having no accountability in your trading is very dangerous. There is no one there to stop you if you want to overleverage or overtrade. You have to get somebody to watch over you.

See related: How to Overcome Overtrading

If you have a fellow trader that you can find who is also at home—a retail trader—would that work?

That is a perfect example. Get onto a team. That is the point that we always try to make to people. Get onto a team. Get into a group. Get somewhere you have some accountability, where you have people that are actually looking at your trades and actually critiquing them. 

Have people that can actually step in and tell you, “Hey, you are wrong; what are you doing here? This was done incorrectly.” And have it be someone that you can actually take that criticism from.

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