Investing in stocks has long been a popular way for people to grow their wealth and secure their financial future. Traditionally, stocks are bought and sold manually – through a broker, or directly from a company. However, in recent years, the rise of algorithmic trading, or ‘Algo Trading’, has enabled novice traders to take advantage of complex strategies and unlocking performance gains.
Put simply, algorithmic trading uses automated software to analyze financial markets and execute trades based on predetermined parameters. Algo trading is often associated with high-frequency trading (HFT), but it can be applied on a much smaller scale. By automating the trading process, traders can take advantage of price movements and identify strategies to achieve more consistent results.
One of the main benefits of algorithmic trading is that it can reduce human emotions and bias. In manual trading, investors can be influenced by their own fears, hopes, and opinions. Seeking to maximize profits, they often succumb to impulsive trading behaviours – like chasing recent highs, or buying high and selling low. Algo trading systems can remove the element of emotion and focus on tested strategies – allowing traders to trade more objectively and achieve more consistent performance.
When it comes to algorithmic share trading, there are two main types of strategies: “Trend Following” and “Mean Reversion”. A trend-following strategy is based on the idea that markets tend to trend in one direction for long periods of time. This strategy seeks to identify and capitalize on existing trends – entering positions when trends are established, and closing out positions when the price reaches its peak.
Mean reversion strategies, on the other hand, are based on short-term price movements. This strategy looks for cases when the market breaks from its normal range – such as when prices move far from the average price. By identifying these opportunities, traders can capitalize on periods of price swings – where prices can suddenly move back towards their average.
Regardless of which strategy is adopted, algorithmic trading simply increases the ability to analyse data more quickly and accurately. By automating their trading processes, traders can capture more profitable opportunities and reduce the amount of errors and mistakes. Algorithmic trading can also reduce cost and execution delays, as orders can be placed faster and cheaper.
In conclusion, algorithmic share trading can be a powerful way for novice traders to take advantage of complex trading strategies and maximize their performance, without the burden of emotions. By automating the trading process, traders can analyze financial data more quickly and accurately, and identify opportunities to capitalize on market trends. With the right understanding and equipment, algorithmic share trading can be a powerful tool for achieving consistent and profitable returns.