Paper Trading? But, I Want That Money NOW

If you’re anything like me, you’ve spent years watching opportunities in various markets pass you by because you didn’t have the money to make money. 

You may have also decided that this year, it won’t happen again. So this time, when you heard the hype, you didn’t just listen to it happen. You decided to do something about it and tried to catch the wave only to find you made a mistake and quickly went into the red. 

That was my experience when I decided I wanted to do something this time, so I jumped on AMC (way too late, I now know)(GME was too rich for my blood). Then I slowly watched my investment drop to -50%. 

Did I quit then? Hell no. Mama didn’t raise no quitter. Understanding my account size, I started looking into my options. Okay, so then what? Maybe the same thing that you did? 

I started spending hours upon hours on r/stocks, r/wallstreetbets, and r/pennystocks, looking for the next HOT PICK that would send my account to the moon and change my life in a few short months so long as I had diamond hands. 

How did that work out? Well, nearly every single trade resulted in a loss. If you check out my right now, you can see that my trades that result in a gain are only at 20%, and that average gain is less than a dollar. 

Those “gains” only happened after I stopped all the holding and hoping of Reddit suggestions. 

Before you say, “it’s only a loss if you sell,” I mean, I guess that’s true, but I was losing money, and I’m a firm believer now that cash can be a position as long as you have a plan, rules to follow, and start doing something to grow your account. 

So let’s be honest…my chances of finding the winning lotto ticker with perfect timing are about as likely as me winning the MegaMillions or Powerball. 

But…but…I learn better by doing. How the heck am I going to learn if I can’t trade? 

Paper Trading!!

When I first looked into paper trading options, it immediately turned me off. I did NOT want to spend money to pay for software to practice trading with fake money. 

I was also annoyed that many of the paper trading options didn’t let you have a custom account size. The paper trading software or website’s account sizes were typically much much larger than I actually had. 

By far, the most annoying thing was the lack of OTC market trades available with those programs and websites.

After much internal debate, I came to my senses and remembered the old saying, “good ain’t cheap and cheap ain’t good.” 

I decided to go with Stockstotrade for a few reasons. 

  • All the traders I follow use it
  • Broker integration 
  • OTC’s
  • Option for PDT rule
  • Everything on one screen (I’ll have to talk about this later, were you also spending precious time jumping from site to site to research before making a trade)
  • Includes paper trading account

The best thing about its paper trading is if you are planning to use stockstotrade to make your trades with broker integration, this is the perfect practice as it works exactly like a live trade. The only difference is the account name. 

The program’s paper trading account also lets you input a custom account size with custom fee options so you can mimic your broker. This is HUGE because you can still practice like it were real money with your broker. 

While you practice with the paper trading account, you can make all the good trades and bad trades you want which help you truly learn while feeding money into your broker account until you’ve built the confidence to start using your hard-earned cash. 

In summary: Sooo…pft to paper trading, right? Not unless you have the money to lose while you learn. Paper trading is an invaluable tool while you are just breaking into the world of stocks to discover patterns, practice those patterns, succeed, and make mistakes without hurting your cash account. While you do this, feed your broker account with your hard-earned cash until you’re ready to start losing and making real money. Even the top traders lose, so it has to be expected. 

Here is an excellent quick video from an admirable trader, Tim Bohen, about paper trading and how it can be beneficial. 

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