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Should You Start Day Trading?

Day trading has been a hot topic among investors for years, with many individuals finding it an exciting and potentially lucrative form of investing. But is it the right choice for you? In this article, we’ll explore what day trading is, whether you can make money from it, who it’s suitable for, the benefits and drawbacks, and the risks associated with this investment strategy.

What is Day Trading?


Day trading is a form of short-term investing in which traders buy and sell financial instruments like stocks, options, currencies, or futures within the same day. Day trading primarily aims to capitalize on small price movements in highly liquid assets. Day traders rely on technical analysis, market news, and other data to make quick decisions and execute their trades.

Can You Make Money Day Trading?

Potential for Profit

Yes, it is possible to make money day trading. Many successful day traders have earned a steady income or even amassed significant wealth through their trading activities. However, it is important to note that day trading is not a guaranteed path to riches. The success rate is relatively low, with some studies estimating that around 90% of day traders fail to achieve consistent profits.

Factors Affecting Success

The potential to make money day trading depends on several factors, including the trader’s skill, knowledge, discipline, risk management, and available capital. The overall market conditions can also play a crucial role in determining a trader’s success. During periods of high volatility, day traders may have increased opportunities to make profits. However, these opportunities come with higher risks as well.

Who is Day Trading Suitable For?

Personality Traits

Day trading is best suited for individuals with certain personality traits and skills. These include:

  1. Discipline: Strictly following trading plans, strategies, and risk management rules is essential for day trading success. Without discipline, traders may be tempted to take excessive risks or deviate from their strategies, leading to potential losses.
  2. Patience: Day traders must be patient and wait for the right opportunities to present themselves before executing trades. Jumping into trades impulsively can result in poor decision-making and increased risk.
  3. Decisiveness: In the fast-paced world of day trading, making quick, informed decisions is crucial. Day traders must be able to process information efficiently and act on it without hesitation.
  4. Emotional Control: Day trading can be emotionally taxing, with potentially significant gains and losses within a short time frame. Successful day traders can control their emotions and avoid making impulsive decisions based on fear or greed.
  5. Adaptability: Market conditions can change rapidly, and day traders need to be able to adjust their strategies and tactics accordingly.

Time Commitment

Day trading requires a significant time commitment, as traders need to monitor the markets, research potential trades, and execute their strategies throughout the trading day. As a result, day trading is most suitable for individuals who can dedicate ample time to this pursuit, either as a full-time job or a part-time endeavour with flexible hours.

Benefits and Drawbacks of Day Trading


  1. Potential for High Returns: Day trading can offer the potential for significant profits, especially for skilled and experienced traders.
  2. Liquidity: Day traders typically focus on highly liquid assets, which can be bought and sold quickly and easily, minimizing slippage and ensuring that orders are filled at the desired prices.
  3. No Overnight Risk: Since day traders close their positions by the end of the trading day, they are not exposed to the risks associated with holding positions overnight, such as unexpected news events or market gaps.


  1. High Risk: Day trading is inherently risky, with the potential for significant losses in a short period of time.
  2. Stressful: The fast-paced nature of day trading and the need to constantly monitor the markets can be stressful and emotionally draining for some individuals.
  3. High Costs: Day traders often face high trading costs, including brokerage fees, commissions, and taxes. Additionally, traders may need to invest in specialized hardware and software to support their trading activities.

The Risks of Day Trading

Financial Risk

Day trading involves the risk of losing a significant portion or even all of the invested capital. This can happen due to poor decision-making, lack of discipline, or simply bad luck. To mitigate this risk, it’s important for day traders to develop a solid trading plan, employ effective risk management strategies, and only trade with money they can afford to lose.

Market Risk

Market risk refers to the possibility of financial losses due to adverse market conditions, such as a sudden increase in volatility, unexpected news events, or shifts in investor sentiment. Day traders can minimize this risk by staying informed about market news and trends, utilizing stop-loss orders, and diversifying their trading activities across different asset classes and instruments.

Psychological Risk

The psychological toll of day trading can be significant, with the potential for stress, burnout, and negative impacts on mental health. To combat these risks, it’s important for day traders to maintain a healthy work-life balance, develop a support network of fellow traders, and seek professional help if needed.

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