Let’s get one thing straight right off the bat, it is a pretty hard thing to be a trader and a student at the same time, you will be jumping to and from your studies and trading, and there is a good chance that one of them will start to take over the other, there are also plenty of different strategies available to trade, but some of them are not quite as easy to do when you have other commitments taking up a lot of your time. So we are going to be looking at some of the strategies that could work for you.
Of course, these same strategies can also be used if you are a full-time worker, as the shared responsibilities remain the same, the difference with a student is that you often also have a lower amount of capital available to trade, and so that is what we are going to be taking into consideration too.
As a student, you are probably strapped for cash, most of that is going on your rent, your foot, and your tuition, so if you are thinking of being a forex trader, then you are going to need a strategy that does not take a lot of money to do. This will throw a lot of strategies out of the window including things like swing trading, position trading, and trend trading. These strategies require you to hold on to trades for a long period of time and so would need the capital in order to do that, probably a little bit more than what you have at your disposal.
So what strategies can you use? Well the main two would be day trading and scalping, scalping takes the least amount of capital and also each trade takes the least amount of time, the problem with scalping is that you will most likely need to be there at the computer screen when reading. As a student, you most likely do not have as much time as you would like as you have your studies to do. So the scalping strategy, while cheap to use will require you to be there, taking you away from your studies, and you do not want to sacrifice your grades and results for trading.
So this leaves us with day trading, trades generally take between a few hours and a day in order to complete and these sorts of strategies will ensure that you close out the trades at the end of the day so as not to hold them overnight. This strategy does not require you to have a huge balance due to only holding them for the day, and the length of them means that you do not need to sit in front of the computer which is perfect as a student trader.
Probably the biggest issue that comes with being a student is not your time, but the amount of money that you have, being a student is expensive with the tuition fees and living costs, it doesn’t leave you with much. So you really need to make a decision before you even start trading, can you actually afford to trade? It’s a big question, if you are using money that you would have otherwise spent on food, then do not trade, if it is money that you would have just thrown away on a night out then go for it, ensure that you are only using money that you can afford to use. A lot of students jump into trading in the hope that they can make a quick buck or make enough to pay for their course, this is not always a realistic goal, get into it for the experience and any profits are simply a bonus.
Having said that, no strategy is good for a student if you do not have the right risk management plans in place. Risk management is there to protect you and your account and is even more important when you are thinking about trading with a lack of time and a lack of capital. This will include things like stop losses, take profits, a proper risk to reward ratio, and proper entry and exit requirements for your trade. When you start out trading you should have worked out what these are, however going in as a student will mean that you will need to be stricter and to adhere to them at all times, you may even need to adjust them to better suit the amount of time that you have and also the balance that you have.
You will find people all over the internet simply telling you that you should not be trading at the same time as being a student, but this is not the case at all. There is the opportunity for anyone to be a trader, all you need to do is to adapt the way that you trade to better meet your own personal requirements. Use proper risk management and choose a strategy that works for you. All of them could work, but it will be based on your current circumstances of time and money available. So do not be disheartened, as student trading may be a little slower and the gains a little lower, but you are learning and the markets are not going anywhere, so do not rush, take your time and build that foundation for being a successful trader.