Exactly how to Establish Your Trading Displays
Book charting for must-watch tickers, with a 2nd group set to different time frameworks that connect to a single symbol from the watch list. While not set in rock, the complying with settings use a great beginning factor:
Must-have graphes might consist of the following:
If feasible, maintain two collections of S&P 500 futures graphes, one for the U.S.-only session, starting at 9:30 a.m. ET and finishing at 4:15 p.m. ET, and a second 24-hour 60-minute futures chart that tracks overnight action in Asia as well as Europe.
Leading left (1) and facility left (2) panels present market internals and key indexes not revealed on the very first screen.
[No matter what kind of trader you are, the ideal setup for your trading screens will depend on the specific indicators and oscillators you choose to analyze. To learn more about these tools, check out the Technical Analysis course on the Investopedia Academy, which includes on-demand videos and interactive content to help you improve your trading skills.]
Building Effective Trading Screens
Generally speaking, traders do a poor job capturing the three types of information needed to support a comprehensive visual analysis: market observation, position management and incubator. Each square inch of screen space wasted with unnecessary charts or data contributes to an incomplete view that can be costly in an active trading style. Nearly all traders have made the most common mistake at some point in the careers, i.e. loading up screens with too many charts and not enough tickers.
Reserve charting for must-watch tickers, with a second group set to different time frames that link to a single symbol from the watch list. If space is limited, add a time frame toolbar to fewer charts and flip through different settings on that chart. Specific time frames utilized for this analysis should match your market approach. While not set in stone, the following settings offer a good starting point:
- Scalpers: 5-minute, 15-minute and hourly charts.
- Swing Traders: 15-minute, hourly and daily charts
- Market Timers: hourly, daily and weekly charts or daily, weekly and monthly charts
Must-have charts may include the following:
- S&P 500 futures or SPDR S&P 500 Trust (SPY) set to 15-minute time frame
- Nasdaq 100 Futures or Powershares QQQ Trust (QQQ) set to 15-minute time frame
- VIX – CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) set to 15-minute time frame
- 24-hour 15-minute charts of market-moving securities such as Apple Inc. (AAPL), SPDR Gold Shares (GLD) and the US Oil Fund (USO).
If possible, keep two sets of S&P 500 futures charts, one for the U.S.-only session, starting at 9:30 a.m. ET and ending at 4:15 p.m. ET, and a second 24-hour 60-minute futures chart that tracks overnight action in Asia and Europe. This second chart is enormously useful in getting up to speed when you open your workstation in the morning. (See also: Interpreting Overnight Action in the Index Futures.)
What about a real-time news ticker? This is a personal choice because some strategies rely on breaking news to execute positions while the majority works perfectly well with a stand-alone third-party service or a carefully curated Twitter stream. As a general rule, it is best to keep news off your charting and data programs, saving the precious space for charts and security tickers.
These images capture highlight methods to use screen space efficiently, regardless of the number of monitors used to watch the financial markets. The panels in these examples scale well when adding new screens, or when loading up a small laptop for travel. When pressed for space, reduce the number of charts and securities while keeping the entire set of indexes and indicators.