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Is Paper Trading Worth It?


Have you been considering dabbling in stock trading but are still too hesitant to put your money on the line? Selling and buying securities with real money can be a nerve-wracking business. Making actual real-time trades involves risking your own hard-earned cash, and that can feel like a step too far for a novice trader. However, there’s a solution that can help to make it easier to take that first plunge into the stock market – paper trading. 

What Is Paper Trading?

Paper trading is a term that is used to describe simulated trades that allow would-be investors to buy and sell securities with no real money changing hands. There are several ways in which these practice trades can be made, however the easiest and best is to use an online platform which enables you to practice electronically. These boast a range of impressive features to enable you to track your progress and performance, manage your portfolios and practice the basic mechanics of trading. 

If you’re a newcomer to the world of investment, should you try paper trading first before taking the plunge into buying your first security? Or should you just dive right into the stock market? There are a number of benefits associated with trying out an electronic practice platform first. 

Investment Practice Without Risk

The greatest benefit of trying out paper trading is that it can help you learn the basics of investment with no risk to your own finances. It’s only natural to be nervous when trading for the first time, and online platforms allow you to gain confidence in your abilities without having to fear failure. You can try a range of strategies and investment avenues to determine which suit your best while tracking your progress as you go. With this early experience behind you, you’ll be better placed for success when you’re ready to invest your own money for the first time.

Learning The Terminology

The trading environment is a complex one with a raft of terminology to learn. Paper trading allows you to learn all of these terms so that you can be confident in using them when you buy stocks for the first time.

Stress-Free Experience

A trading simulator removes the two major emotions from the equation which impact negatively on your decisions – greed and fear. When you aren’t using real money, you can think clearly and apply strategies without being swayed by your emotions. This helps you to learn the importance of valuing the company in question without clouded judgment.

Learn From Your Errors

Every trader can learn from their mistakes, but when you make those errors in the real investment environment they come at a personal financial cost. When you try paper trading, you can have the same experience of learning from your mistakes but without actually losing money. You will be able to learn how to adapt your strategies as you gather evidence about what works and what doesn’t without any fear of loss.

Experimenting With Paper Trading

Are you ready to try your hand at investment for the first time? Then why not give paper trading a try? You’ve nothing to lose and everything to gain. You’re sure to become a more confident, more experienced and more positive investor.

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Paul A. Ebeling, a polymath, excels, in diverse fields of knowledge Including Pattern Recognition Analysis in Equities, Commodities and Foreign Exchange, and he is the author of "The Red Roadmaster's Technical Report on the US Major Market Indices, a highly regarded, weekly financial market commentary. He is a philosopher, issuing insights on a wide range of subjects to over a million cohorts. An international audience of opinion makers, business leaders, and global organizations recognize Ebeling as an expert.