Targets and trading full time


I’m new to the forum, I have had a good read through it for sometime though.

I Know its a subject that comes up a lot but I thought id try get a sensible response to it. Do you traders who trade full time set weekly / monthly targets ? if so, what in terms of % do you aim for ?
also do full time traders have a set routine ? will you spend all day looking at charts or some days do you look and think, doesn’t look like much movement today I’ll spend the day away from the computer ?

I’ve been trading awhile now 6months + with my own live account. I’ve seen very mixed results. I tend to trade the higher timeframe (daily / weekly) trends on lower timeframes (30min / 1hr), but have noticed that news free days along with UK and USA bank holidays seen very flat.

Any advice welcome

I think setting a % or $ target is a difficult goal to set because it assumes the market behaves the same way every day, week, month, or year. At some level, there is repetitive behavior, but it’s difficult to accurately assess 100% of the time when the market is trending or when it’s ranging, or when it’s in some sort of transition between the two. I think a better goal to set would be process goals (fill out your journal, backtest, research) and execution goals (proper risk and trade management). These are the things you can have full control of, right? With that said, I do benchmark myself against the currency index at It’s good to know how far ahead/behind you are from the pros in your chosen style of trading and asset class. :slight_smile:

Thanks for the reply.
That’s nearer enough the conclusion i am coming to. It’s hard enough getting trades correct without also predicting your weekly / monthly profits. I think the fact I had hit weekly targets a few times gave me false hope.

I am though very much looking at this from a business point of view and if it’s to be your full time work you do need to cover your bills. I was wondering how people handled this side of things

It’s true you do have to treat it like a business, but it doesn’t have to be a business right away. That’s like saying a musician has to go out and do gigs the day he picks up a guitar to pay his bills. No, usually he/she will practice for years. Same with forex trading. Practice, get your processes down, and save up for a decent sized account. If you are in a rush to make money from trading, then you’re already putting yourself at a psychological disadvantage of excess pressure to perform well right away, hindering your ability to trade well consistently.

Vey true statement, I’ve been trading for 6 months full time and starting to get a bit impatient, probably because its such an easy thing to learn but such a hard thing to master.
Thanks for your comments.

Depending on the trading approach which you have taken you can to a given degree calculate and expected monthly return, or to the point an average expected return - they key words being ‘expected’ and ‘average’.

If your trading methodology is one that can be quantified with near to zero discretionary elements then you can actually back-test with a high level of confidence in your results. With a quantified trading approach it really is black and white, you either trade at given parameter or you don’t (depending on the variables that you use in your calculations).

Back-test enough data (the sample size) and you can then look at each and every months return - from here you could attempt to work out an expected monthly return. However for this approach I would consider a very large sample size of trades which also take place in all cycles of the market.

Should you want to take this one step further, you can also look at your historical draw-down levels and from these results also calculate the optimal level of risk that ‘can’ be taken on each trade so that your account remains away from being busted. I would suggest incorporating a margin of human error though - we all make mistakes from time to time.

My 2cents. If you are looking at this as a business, you do the same thing you would do before you start any business. Make sure you have a basic knowledge of the business. Enough knowledge so you can make good decisions, by gathering relevant facts, listing relevant options and picking the least of the evils. That goes for any business. You get that by going to pip school, participate in the forums. Check out utube, do net searches. You want to gather as much info as you can. Based on the info that comes easy for you to understand will give you an idea of what type of trader you are. Again like in any business everything revolves around you, your situation, your goals and what kind of trader you are. Your end goal is to find a trading method that suits you, with a proven money management system that applies to you and what youère trying to do, once you have that you apply your method, money management with patience and discipline.

You need or should set goals because with them you can measure your performance and see what needs to be changed. Having someone who you do not know and does not know anything about you or your situation or what you are trying to achieve will do nothing for you and more than likely lead to confusion. If you list out what it will cost you to run your business and a minimum profit you would like to make, that will tall you how much money you will have to make. Now as was pointed out, if you are not in the position to set it up and start this way, do not worry by knowing how much you need and how much you have, you can work part time with a goal of trying to get what you will need for full time. Again my opinion, good practice to set goals. goals are a map of where you are now to where you want to go in the future.
Again my opinion. Good Luck

Thanks guys,
It’s good to hear people telling you to do things you’ve been doing. Confirms that you are heading in the correct direction or down the right avenues so thanks for the advice.

I need to go back to basics I think
I’ve seemed to lose my way a bit after back testing my results tweaking things then not allowing time for results to happen.

As for a business everything said is correct I think it’s also good to remember a lot of business’s fail in the first year so like any other business give it time let it grow

Great advice thanks everyone

I think we are at our most dangerous points when we have a little knowledge; right away we forget about basics and start believing we are experts. Then Mr. Reality comes in gives a slap and sends us home with no money in our accounts.

I do have a monthly target in mind which is based on years of trading and knowing what my strategy and I are good for. It does not act as a pressure point or lead me into crazy trades should things not go as planned, but rather as a guideline for my own performance.