Thursday, August 06, 2009

Trading Creatively: Finding New Niches as a Trader

A while back I wrote six pieces of advice for new traders. One additional piece of advice that I would offer is to be creative in finding markets and strategies to trade.

If you were starting a new business, you wouldn't necessarily select an area that is loaded with competition. You would find a business niche where demand is not fully met; where there is potential opportunity.

Interestingly, new traders often gravitate to the most common and popular strategies and markets, such as the directional trading of stock indexes. Rarely do traders venture outside their national boundaries (especially in the U.S.), and rarely do they look into strategies at different time frames, non-directional strategies, and strategies across asset classes.

One trader I met recently collected extensive information on world trade and used this (along with other information) to trade calendar spreads in commodities. He has been unusually successful, using reasoning processes that are quite different from the norm.

I encourage traders to never stop exploring markets and strategies. There is always room to grow. Those who develop new opportunities are best positioned for those occasions in which current sources of edge start to go away. It is great to find a niche as a trader; even better is to continually develop fresh niches.