Share Trading – How to get started

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Investing in the stock market can be loads of fun and a great way to save for the future.

There are many ways to pick stocks and a whole horde of people eager to share their methods with you. I won’t be dealing with specific stock-picking techniques in this article though; today I’m simply interested in helping newcomers get started.

Becoming an investor can seem like a daunting process, but I’m here to show you that it can be simple and painless.

There are 3 main things you will need to do to get started; get access to good research tools, read some good books, and open a trading account, preferably in that order.

Get access to good research tools

Online trading accounts will sometimes give you access to live stock prices and some even have basic tools for charting and other bits and pieces.

Ideally though, you should register on a website like ADVFN that is dedicated to providing market data, analysis tools and discussion forums. Unlike trading platforms that are mainly focussed on tools for buying and selling stocks, information sites like ADVFN provide tools to make your investment decisions easier and better informed.

Quality tools like streaming charts and financial data analysis as well as reliable live prices and Level 2 can make a big difference. The more information at your fingertips, the more empowered you will be, hopefully leading to better investment decisions.

Possibly the most important aspect of a site like ADVFN is the discussion forums. These allow you to chat about companies with other investors, gauge the opinion of the market and increase your knowledge about a stock. They are also a lot of fun to read and take part in.

DYOR – Do Your Own Research – is the mantra of the discussion forums and is some of the best advice you’ll receive. Don’t take someone’s excited recommendation on faith, have a look into the details and make your own decision. A site like ADVFN lets you chat about stocks and get ideas, but also gives you everything you need to do your own research.

Register on ADVFN for free now to get access to everything mentioned above.

Read some good books

A lot of people start investing with no strategy or with poorly formed ideas about which stocks to pick. These are generally the guys who are flat broke and no longer investing 6 months later.

There is no shame in seeing how other people have made a success out of investing and emulating them. Learning from the mistakes and successes of others is fundamentally sensible. Rushing headlong into trading with no plan is not.

Read a few books, don’t just get one and blindly follow it. Every investor has different goals, so one successful person’s rules and ideas might not be completely applicable to your situation. The more you read, the more you will understand about what is involved in investing and what strategy will work best for you.

Books like 101 Ways to Pick Stock Market Winners by Clem Chambers, Evil’s Good by Simon Cawkwell and The Naked Trader by Robbie Burns are good places to start your reading.

Take ideas from your research and mould them to your own personal investment needs. Use the ideas of successful investors to create your own plan.

Open a trading account

Whatever you do, don’t skip to this step without first getting your tools and plan in order. You wouldn’t put a £50 Ikea wardrobe together with no allen key or instructions, so why would you put your financial future on the line without the equivalent tools and strategy?

If you have opened a free research account with ADVFN and bought and read some good investment books you should by now be a lot more knowledgeable on the subject of investment. If you are confident you have your tools and plan in place now and only now it is time to open a trading account.

Decide whether you want to trade online via a website or app or whether you would prefer to pick up the phone and speak to a broker to place your orders. It comes down to personal preference, so have a think about what would be most convenient for you.

There are many online options available, many of which advertise on this site. Have a look around and take your pick.

Telephone brokerages are rarer than the online option, but companies like TSCTrade (0207 0710 805) still offer this more traditional execution-only approach to stockbroking.

Find a broker you are comfortable with and be prepared to send them various forms and documents. It can feel like a bit of a pain, but the process is designed by the regulators to keep you and your money safe and the firms accountable. A firm that only asks for your name and email when you sign up to trade with them should not be trusted.


Don’t rush into investing. Get prepared, educate yourself and stay sensible.

The stock market can be used to make your future more comfortable and secure, but it can take time to develop a winning strategy.

Stay focussed, keep your wits about you and above all else DYOR!

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER FOR FREE ON ADVFN, the world's leading stocks and shares information website, provides the private investor with all the latest high-tech trading tools and includes live price data streaming, stock quotes and the option to access 'Level 2' data on all of the world's key exchanges (LSE, NYSE, NASDAQ, Euronext etc).

This area of the site is for independent financial commentary. These blogs are provided by independent authors via a common carrier platform and do not represent the opinions of ADVFN Plc. ADVFN Plc does not monitor, approve, endorse or exert editorial control over these articles and does not therefore accept responsibility for or make any warranties in connection with or recommend that you or any third party rely on such information. The information available at is for your general information and use and is not intended to address your particular requirements. In particular, the information does not constitute any form of advice or recommendation by ADVFN.COM and is not intended to be relied upon by users in making (or refraining from making) any investment decisions. Authors may or may not have positions in stocks that they are discussing but it should be considered very likely that their opinions are aligned with their trading and that they hold positions in companies, forex, commodities and other instruments they discuss.


  1. G.J.Tilston says:

    Why not introduce the public to investing in unit/investment trusts a far safer way of investing for a beginner?

  2. Andy says:

    Dear Sirs
    How many days before I can collect my slick sport car as illustrated from my winning, 3day 1week, 1month?

  3. lloyd button says:

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    · One vertical and up to 3 horizontal wells
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    · Development of Pad 1 with up to 7 vertical/slant wells and 6 horizontal wells
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    · Commencement of development drilling and production Q2

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