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Randy Frederick on Planning Trades

Randy Frederick discusses his thoughts on planning trades.

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Another trading habit or discipline that helps me in my trading is to always have some sort of a plan in place. If you go into a position with the idea that 'I don't care what happens as long as I make money' that's not much of a plan. And the reality is if that's the case, you'll probably forget some things. You may not have taken into account the fact that, oh, well, maybe there's an earnings report coming up, maybe there's a news event that's on the horizon. It's really important to do plenty of research, have a very well structured plan, and when you get into a position, make sure that you know what price you want to get in at, make sure that you have a price that's predetermined at which you'll exit if you hit a certain profit target, but also another one that you'll exit if you start to sustain a certain amount of losses. And there are a variety of different methods that investors can use to help them get out of positions that are either working against them or working in their favor, but the most important thing of all is to have all those things determined before you get into the position.

I mean, you can't build a business without a business plan. You can't run a restaurant, ah, without a menu. So you have to have some sort of discipline, you have to make sure that you think about all these things. And, oftentimes, when I tell people what they should have answers to, questions that they should have answers to before they get into a position, they're always like, 'Well, I never even thought about that.' Well, you need to think about that, because if you don't know the answers to these questions, then you're probably not ready to make this investment yet.

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Important Disclosures

Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

All expressions of opinion are subject to change without notice in reaction to shifting market conditions.

Schwab does not recommend the use of technical analysis as a sole means of investment research.


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