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What Is Swing Trading vs. Day Trading? Which is Better?


In this article, you will learn how swing trading compares to day trading and other time frames.

Walk Before You Run

One of the first steps to establishing a winning trading technique is to determine your preferred trading style (investing timeframe).

Without doing so, it’s impossible to lay down basic ground rules for your trading strategy, such as how long you will seek to hold each stock position.

Below, we have summarized the pros and cons of each of the four main trading methodologies and investing strategies (sorted from longest to shortest holding period):

Traditional “Buy and Hold” Investing

Holding period of several years to decadesBalanced portfolio of 20 or more stocksBased on fundamental analysisPros
* Very passive, minimal work required
Limited to no flexibility
* Potentially large drawdowns and long periods of time with no appreciation
* Dependent on market to always move higher, with no consideration of trend

Position Trading (also known as “trend trading” or “core trading”)

Holding period of 6 months to several yearsNarrow selection of stocks with concentrated positionsPros
* Designed to achieve big gains from riding strong and steady market trends
* Large drawdowns in choppy or indecisive markets
* High volatility in profit and loss (P&L)

Swing Trading (near & intermediate-term) – Our preferred ETF and stock trading strategy

Holding period

Near-term trades are several days to weeks
Intermediate-term trades are 3 to 6 months

Flexible, well-balanced strategy with solid reward-risk characteristicsPros
* Strong risk control due to market timing (learn more here)
* Flexible enough to take advantage of shorter-term technical trends in both directions
* Based on technical analysis, which works because stock picking is based on current price and volume trends
* Active management requires more monitoring and solid stock market timing


Holding period of several minutes to one full dayTakes advantage of intraday price and volume momentum in the marketsPros
* Extremely risk-averse due to no overnight exposure and risk of outside events
* Like swing trading, is a technical-based trading methodology
* Requires very active management, sitting in front of monitor all day
* Physically and mentally demanding (requires solid reflexes)
* Quite time consuming, only suitable for full-time traders

So, what is the best stock trading strategy?

There is no correct answer because your preferred trading technique or investing methodology is a personal decision based primarily on your personal comfort levels with both risk and patience.

Back in the late 1990’s, we began as daytraders, but found it to be too physically and mentally exhausting over the long-term.

As such, we began adjusting our trading system to focus on swing trading in the primarily short-term time frame. This quickly became our best-fit strategy because it gave us the maximum potential for consistent trading profits, while putting our capital at the least amount of risk.

Swing trading (also known as “momentum trading”) is also an ideal trading timeframe for people who can not or will not sit in front of their computer monitor all day, staring at flashing ticker symbols.

In our flagship Wagner Daily swing trade alerts service, we seek an average holding time of 2 to 5 weeks for stock pick.

Furthermore, our swing trading system is designed to be completely end-of-day, so even people with daytime jobs may still fully participate in the strategy.

The post What Is Swing Trading vs. Day Trading? Which is Better? appeared first on Swing Trading Blog | Trading Strategies Blog | Morpheus Trading Blog.

What Is Swing Trading vs. Day Trading? Which is Better? was first posted on October 26, 2022 at 11:59 am.
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