In the ever-changing world of trading, techniques and strategies have had to grow and adapt as well. Beyond the established methods of trend following and swing trading, new variations have begun to take centre stage, notably long-term trend-following strategies. Aiming to maximize the potential of enduring market trends and mitigate the risks of sudden market volatility, this methodology is steadily gaining traction amongst new and seasoned traders alike.
Bigger Picture – Focusing on Long-term Trends
Previously, traders’ trend-following approach was often set within a 20 or 50-day timeframe. However, with market fluctuations becoming less predictable and more complex, many are now opting for longer-term strategies, focusing on the 100, 200, or even 300-day moving averages to dictate their trading. They are shifting from fast, short-term systems to slower-paced, yet potentially more profitable, long-term ones.
These longer-term strategies can help diminish the frequency and risk of premature trading decisions caused by short-term volatility, often keeping the investor from being “whipsawed” – entering and exiting trades at inopportune times, which can lead to substantial losses.
The Rise of ETFs
Exchange-traded funds (ETFs), combining the broad diversification of mutual funds with the liquidity of individual stocks, have quickly become a popular investment vehicle for traders. Recently, several ETFs have been set up to replicate the long-term trend-following approach, tracking the returns of an index of commodity futures traders.
These ETFs have delivered impressive results, providing validation to this modern approach to trend following. They offer not just an opportunity to benefit from this strategy without needing to execute it oneself but also offer traders and investors diversified and risk-controlled access to market trends.
The Magic of Diversified Systems
Long-term trend-following strategies come with their own unique quirk. Effectively making them work entails venturing out of the equity market bubble and into a multitude of differing markets. These can span from oil and gold to wheat and foreign exchange markets. The diverse nature of these markets often enables them to trend, even when other markets may be underperforming.
Moreover, this approach does not limit itself to equities but has also found application in the dynamic crypto market where traders leverage these strategies to navigate its swiftly changing terrain.
The diversified approach to multiple asset classes makes trend following a highly attractive strategy – a pillar of its understated allure.
The Tech Angle – Automated Trading Systems
The birth of automated trading systems has revolutionized the way we trade and invest. These systems allow traders to set rules for trade entries and exits, which, once programmed, can be automatically executed. Such systems eliminate the possibility of human error and the influence of human emotions, seen as the greatest hindrances to successful trading.
The automation process is also beneficial for traders interested in diversifying their operations across various markets. For instance, these systems can design and back-test potential strategies, compare past and current market trends, and even execute trades, all tailored to specific criteria and triggers set by the investor.
Indeed, sticking to systematic trading rules may help traders to avoid the pitfalls of emotional decision-making and improve the likelihood of placing successful trades in markets. Indeed, market history is replete with examples of when emotional trading has led to substantial financial loss; automated trading strategies are one way to help mitigate such risks.
Equities Trading – The Unknown Winners
Equities markets, even though complex, still hold attractive prospects for traders. However, long-term trades continue to dominate, with unknown entities often providing the best results. This is facilitated by automated processes that can identify lesser-known names that traders are not currently watching. These undetected companies frequently represent untapped potentials, yielding lucrative returns for the discerning trader.
A vital tool in equity trading is maintaining an updated watch list with potential picks. However, this is not about knowing the in-depth details of each company. The focus is instead on their market behavior, the trends they follow, and if they meet the established criteria for a successful trade setup.
Risk management also plays a major part in the long-run success of a trading venture. Automated techniques also come in handy here, with predetermined stop-loss points and position sizing, based on the trader’s risk tolerance and trading capital, helping ensure profits are maximized while losses are kept to a minimum.
Taking Advantage of Market Uncertainties with Trading Systems
The unpredictability of markets means traders constantly face the challenge of readjusting their strategies to manage risk and optimize returns. For this reason, sustainable performance over long periods is seen as the mark of success in trading. Here is where automated trading proves its mettle once more, allowing traders to consistently apply predetermined rules and manage risk effectively, even in unfamiliar territories.
Evolving Systems for Changing Times
Successfully navigating the trading landscape requires both adaptability and consistency. Automated trading allows for the creation, back-testing, and refinement of various systemized trading strategies that can adapt to changing market conditions while maintaining the discipline of consistent rules. The strategic advantage lies in the ability to remain unemotional, focusing steadfastly on set parameters and market trends and moving swiftly when the system dictates.
Employing these strategic approaches, traders and investors are continuing to reap lucrative rewards, from trend following to equities trading to automated systems. Which is a natural progression if you think about it. With a detailed understanding of different asset class intricacies and the right trading strategies, they are equipped to navigate any market situation.
Harnessing Experience, Automation and Strategy
Evidently, industry veterans, through years of experience and adopting technological advancements, are creating innovative trading models and strategies with high success rates. The formulation of these strategies is often a rigorous, research-intensive process, tapping into invaluable historical market data to identify patterns and trends, shaping active trading systems.
The cumulative experience and trading acumen gathered are now being used to assist fellow traders. Many successful traders are sharing their insights, resources, and tutorials to help others master trading art, playing a pivotal role in shaping the future of trading. Importantly, through such initiatives, they play a crucial role in enabling a more informed and skilled trading community, designed to navigate an increasingly complex financial landscape.
As technology advances and markets continue to evolve, the quest for the best trading strategies persists. The rise (and success) of long-term trend following signals a growing acknowledgement of the need for long-term, sustainable strategies that can weather market volatility and churn out consistent returns. Whether through broadening the perspectives to include more diversified assets, or by harnessing automation to simplify the trading process, investors and traders alike are steadily investing time, resources, and intellect to reshape the trading landscape.
In the trading world, thus, ‘consistency, adaptability, and long-term focus’ seem to have become the new gold standard.
- Lucy Walker is a journalist that covers finance, health and beauty since 2014. She has been writing for various online publications.
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