So you’ve determined that you are going take full control of your financial future. And you’ve studied the stock and commodities market and have some well founded opinions. You’re up to speed on the latest economic indicators and the health of the dollar. You know what you’d like to do, and in which markets.
But you also know that the rich wise old men on Wall Street say “Decide what to trade based on fundamentals but make your entrance and exit decisions based on technical analysis.”
You know that you need technical analysis training. But to learn technical analysis, you will need a good course. How should you go about finding a good one?
Here are some “street-smart” guidelines for picking a good technical analysis course.
Answer these questions and you’ll be well on your way.
What are the author’s credentials?
Look for someone who has been in the field for many years, and is not likely to be swept away by the latest fad. Wall Street has lots of fads but surprisingly few enduring ideas.
Is the author a trader or an academic?
If the material you want to learn is basic, well established, and does not move much past what is available in the public domain, then an academic business writer may be quite adequate. All the major business publishers will have a basic textbook on technical analysis.
But if you are seeking more powerful techniques and want to read about them in detail, look for an author who is a bone fide successful trader, as it is likely that he or she will focus on the most useful and productive strategies, and not get caught up in describing every possible variant of the moving average. You want to know what works, not what is possible.
Is the technical analysis training applicable to any tradable security?
If you are spending the time to learn technical analysis chart patterns, then you want them to be applicable to stocks, to Forex trading, to futures and to commodities. It would not be the best use of your time to learn technical analysis online if it applied only to the dow jones.
Are the techniques simple and straight forward or overly complex?
Some courses require heavy mathematical background, such as college-level calculus. But the best courses can be understood by any intelligent layman with a high school education. As it turns out some of the greatest traders have learned their stock or Forex technical analysis using nothing more than common arithmetic and some simple hand drawn charts. It could have been done by anyone with a sixth grade education. Be wary of claims of technical analysis training that has many advanced educational prerequisites.
How much does the course cost?
Cost is a factor for everyone but be careful about courses which are free or for very low cost. This is not to say they are without value, for a free course may contain a lot of useful basic information, particularly if that information is in the public domain and can be also accessed from a standard book. But in trading and the financial markets especially, you tend to get what you pay for and really useful information generated by successful traders most likely will not come for free. You should carefully investigate it and if possible talk to someone who has taken the course in the past to determine of there is true value to the technical analyses course, indicators or software you are considering.
Keep your eyes open and do your homework, and you’ll find the right technical analysis training for you!