Equity Trading

Equity Trading – How To Trade Equities

Looking to understand equity trading? Active investing means buying and selling public company shares to profit from price movements. This article is your practical guide, explaining traders’ strategies and tips to make money in the stock market. Learn how to read market signals, manage risks, and build an equity trading plan that works for you.

Key Takeaways

  • Equity trading involves buying and selling shares of publicly listed companies, serving as a vital component of the global economic system by facilitating capital flow and offering profit potential for investors.
  • Successful equity trading requires investor patience, discipline, and extensive research to understand market trends and company performance and study factors impacting stock prices.
  • While equity trading offers opportunities for profit and economic growth, it comes with significant risks, including market volatility and potential financial losses, requiring sound risk management strategies.

What is equity trading?

Equity trading is buying and selling shares on an exchange or a marketplace. An exchange serves as a bustling center where traders and investors purchase and sell shares from publicly traded firms.

The stock market is also known by its other moniker, the equity market, and it functions as a crucial system for market economies, injecting funds into companies to fuel expansion while simultaneously offering investors and traders avenues for potential profits.

These traders adeptly ply their trade within this active environment, deciphering patterns and interpreting intricate financial details. They employ technical and mechanical analysis to find profitable patterns or undervalued companies.

An indispensable component of these exchanges comes through market making, which facilitates matching bids with asks so transactions can be consummated successfully resulting in company shares transferring between parties.

In short, from traditional trading floors buzzing with activity to sophisticated digital exchange networks around the world, equity trading stands as a fundamental segment of worldwide economic infrastructure.

Equity Trading

What is an example of an equity trade?

To gain a clearer insight into the workings of stock trading, let’s explore an equity trade:

Imagine a company that decides to issue an initial public offering (IPO) and has its shares listed for the first time on a stock exchange where they can be bought and sold by investors.

These investors begin bidding for these stocks at a specific price point. Once an owner of the shares agrees with this bid value, they accept it, thereby completing the trade transaction. Such exchanges are facilitated not only in traditional settings like the New York Stock Exchange, but also through modern electronic platforms such as Nasdaq that support online equity transactions.

After acquiring ownership in the form of stocks, an investor who now holds equity in the company may choose to sell those shares later if their market value increases—either due to surging demand among traders or because of favorable outcomes within the business itself—thereby standing to make financial gains from such trades. He or she can, of course, sell with a loss, as well.

Is equity trading hard?

Yes, profiting from equity trading is very tough for a number of reasons. Equity trading can be as challenging as ascending a sharp summit because a myriad of elements, ranging from broader economic conditions to specific company metrics, impact stock prices. Beyond analytical skills, one must also master personal emotions:

Fear and greed frequently drive traders to make foolish decisions that are not originally planned. It’s wise for newcomers to start by trading funds they are prepared to lose.

Grasping the full scope of the stock market and its array of financial instruments isn’t enough. To trade equity successfully requires:

  • in-depth research and analysis, either based on fundamental or quantitative analysis
  • an investment of substantial time along with sustained effort
  • persistence, discipline, and self-control

If you master these skills, equity trading might become not only thrilling but potentially quite profitable too.

Mastering The Keys to Equity Trading

Equity trading strategy (example and backtest)

Let’s show you a specific example of an equity trading strategy complete with rules, backtest, statistics, and performance.

Backtesting stands out as a vital instrument for equity traders. Backtesting involves testing a trading strategy against historical market data to evaluate its potential success without actually committing real funds.

It offers traders a platform where they can refine their strategies by analyzing how they would have performed historically, working under the premise that if these strategies were successful with past market trends, they may well be effective in future scenarios. But there are no guarantees, of course.

Not every approach to backtesting suits all needs — it has various methodologies ranging from manual review of historic trades to sophisticated automated systems handling analysis tasks. Backtesting thus becomes an essential process in an equity trader’s progression towards mastering the art of trading – acting as a safeguard allowing them strategic preparation before plunging into the more challenging environment of active markets.

Let’s give you an example:

Let’s backtest a trading strategy on the S&P 500 by using the ETF with the ticker code SPY.

We have the following trading rules:

THIS SECTION IS FOR MEMBERS ONLY. _________________ Click Here To Get Access Click Here To Get Access To Trading Rules

Backtesting these trading rules yield the following equity curve from inception until today:

Equity trading strategy
Equity trading strategy

The trading metrics and statistics are good:

  • 372 trades
  • 0.63% average gain per trade
  • The win rate is 75%
  • The max drawdown is 16%

Is equity trading important?

Equity trading is an important component of the economic system, allowing corporations to gather capital for expansion by selling shares of their ownership to investors. This action creates an active forum where those issuing stocks and potential shareholders can convene, making the transfer of capital in return for company stakes possible.

Equity markets are crucial in establishing fair pricing through price discovery processes—investors negotiate until they reach a consensus on a reasonable market price for any given financial instrument. Traders and investors make bid and ask pricea, and the price reaches an equilibrium.

These markets also ensure that there is sufficient liquidity. This permits swift transactions involving stock acquisitions or disposals without greatly disturbing its market value, thus yielding a consistent and predictable trading milieu reflecting prevailing market prices.

In essence, the world of equity isn’t just about numerical strategies—it serves as an essential artery that sustains corporate progression and broader economic advancement.

Related reading: Forex trading vs Options trading

What is an Equity Trader?

An equity trader engages in the buying and selling of shares. These traders acquire and offload stocks for their customers or on their personal accounts. They serve as navigators through the rough seas of stock trading, where advisors advise investors on optimal stock selections driven by fundamental or mechanical analysis.

However, embarking on a career path as an equity trader is far from simple. It necessitates knowledge and personal traits that few possess. However, trading can be learned, according to Richard Dennis.

What is another name for equity trading?

Another name for equity trading is stock trading. Whether it’s termed the stock market or equity market, each descriptor highlights a process where assets are bought and sold.

What does equity mean in equity trading?

In trading, equity means share capital or what is injected into the company from shareholders. Equity constitutes the residual value shareholders would receive after the dissolution and settlement of all debts if the company were to be liquidated.

As owners, shareholders participate in profit-sharing and may benefit from dividend distributions.

What types of equity trading are there?

The types of equity trading spans day trading, scalping, swing trading, position trading, mechanical trading, algorithmic trading, or trend following. There are many more, these are just a few examples.

Day trading is one tactic where positions are bought and sold within a single day, targeting profits from quick fluctuations in the market.

Similarly, swing traders engage in equity trades aiming to make money over a time span of a few days.

Equity trading spans various trading strategies. From scalping that aims to secure minor price shifts for gains to position trading, which involves maintaining stakes over longer stretches with hopes of benefiting from significant market trends.

What is the difference between equity and stocks?

The difference between equity and stocks is that equity signifies ownership or interest in a company, while stocks and shares are vehicles through which this ownership is expressed.

While equity symbolizes one’s share in a company’s assets and earnings, it is through stocks that this fractional possession becomes concrete for investors who then partake in the successes (or failures) of said enterprise.

Options trading vs. equity trading

Engaging in equity trading entails the buying and selling actual shares in companies, thus holding a piece of ownership that could yield considerable profits if the company experiences growth.

In contrast, option trading involves exchanging contracts that provide an agreed-upon right to purchase or sell a particular asset at an established price before a specified deadline (expiry). Options trading can potentially lead to substantial returns rapidly due to leveraged positions. Options are geared more toward yielding higher profits quickly – making them particularly attractive for short-term traders.

The choice between investing through equities or options will vary according to individual objectives, preferences, and strategies.

Commodity vs equity trading

The trading of equity is centered around the purchase and sale of company shares. Commodities trading, meanwhile, deals with buying and selling contracts for basic goods such as gold, wheat, or sugar.

Investors engaging in equity markets have the chance to gain from a company’s growth while potentially receiving dividends from their holdings. Over the last century, the stock market has risen about 10% annually, and thus you compound your capital – it snowballs.

Commodity markets don’t offer the potential of compounding. You own an asset, for example, cocoa, but it can’t snowball. Because of this, we believe trading and investing in stocks makes a lot more sense.

What are the drawbacks of equity trading?

The drawbacks of equity trading are that it requires time, capital, and dedication, and you might lose your capital.

An investment or trade is prone to fluctuation, possibly leading to losses for those investing. This underscores why it is imperative for anyone involved in equity trading, no matter your knowledge, to undertake a lot of research and analysis.

What is the psychology behind equity trading?

The psychology behind equity trading is that you must master your emotions when you deal with money. For most traders and investors, it’s very difficult to detach from money. All traders have plenty of trading biases. However, professional traders are probably better at mastering emotions; at least they know their weak spots and try to avoid them.

It entails training one’s mind to maintain rationality even when bombarded by emotions such as fear and greed. Fear can lead traders to exit trades too early or shun necessary risks. Conversely, greed might drive them toward excessively risky trades or cause them to cling onto winning positions longer than advisable.

Is equity trading risky?

Equity trading is very risky because most statistics show that traders lose money. Most beginners have no clue about what lies ahead of them.

Every form of investment carries risk, and trading in equities is no exception. For example, day trading necessitates a high level of engagement with the market – an intense activity involving making multiple trades within a single day.

However, equity trading also holds the attraction of considerable potential returns. You must embrace sound investment practices, including diversification across assets, strategies, time frames, and market directions.

Is equity trading better than option trading?

Equity trading is better than options trading because equity trading is a zero-sum game to an index, while options trading is a 100% zero-sum game.

When you engage in equity trading, you’re purchasing company stocks that grant a proportionate ownership level within that enterprise. As the business prospers over time, there’s potential for substantial gains as well as earnings through dividends.

Options trading are derivatives, and you have no ownership until you exercise your rights and become an owner of shares. Options trading allows investors to buy and sell rights without any obligation to purchase or sell an underlying asset at a predetermined price before a specified date.

What is cash equity trading?

Cash equity trading typically involves the execution of securities trades by large institutional investors on behalf of their own accounts and for those they represent.

“Cash equity” is defined as the part of an investment that can be promptly liquidated into cash – this comes into play when stocks are issued to the public by a company. The transactions involving cash equities take place on key exchanges such as NYSE and NASDAQ, where automated systems along with firm capital often facilitate these trades.

What is equity trading in share market?

Equity trading in the share market is the same as stock market trading. You buy and sell shares on an exchange.

This activity involves purchasing and selling stocks from publicly traded entities on various exchanges, which act as central hubs connecting sellers and purchasers of equities.

What is stop loss in equity trading?

A stop loss in equity trading is where you sell at a loss if the share drops to a predetermined level. It acts as an insurance. It’s touted as a”must” by almost everyone, but backtests and statistics show that an arbitrary stop loss is not a good idea.

In equity market trading, a stop loss functions as a safety mechanism – it’s designed to curtail potential financial setbacks. Essentially, a stop-loss is programmed to offload a stock once its price hits a certain threshold, thereby constraining monetary damages if it drops further.

Instead, you should trade smaller and spread your strategies over many different time frames, types, assets, and market directions. Please read about the pros and cons of a stop loss.

Stop-loss orders come in two types: sell-stop orders provide security for those holding long positions and buy-stop orders offer coverage against short-selling risks.

What is margin in equity trading?

Margin in equity trading refers to the amount of funds an investor borrows from a brokerage firm in order to purchase more shares than their available capital would otherwise allow.

This, of course, can significantly amplify potential gains as well as losses—akin to enhancing one’s financial leverage through borrowed capital, which could lead to purchasing a larger quantity of equities.

If there comes a time when the investor does not maintain enough equity within their account to satisfy a margin call—a demand by the broker for additional capital—the securities owned by that investor are subject to be sold by the brokerage without any prior notification in order for them to recover their money and fulfill that margin requirement.

What is turnover in equity trading?

Turnover in trading refers to the total number of shares bought and sold over a certain period. It might also refer to the total value in USD.

It acts as a pulse for the market. A high turnover ratio for company shares suggests increased liquidity, meaning these shares can be traded more easily. Conversely, when the ratio is low, it points to less liquid stock—making transactions harder. Less liquid stocks have a huge difference between bid and ask price, making it costly to buy and sell. This is called slippage in trading.

It’s important to recognize though that an elevated turnover doesn’t automatically align with better trading. Stocks may experience substantial turnover without any change in their prices.

What is institutional equity trading?

Institutional equity trading is trading conducted by institutions such as banks, mutual funds, hedge funds, etc. These key players in finance depend on traders and sales professionals who specialize in dealing with large-scale institutions to fulfill extensive orders.

How to learn equity trading?

To learn equity trading, you must commit capital and learn by trial and error. You learn the most by trading real money but also by backtesting. It’s important to note that becoming proficient in equity markets takes time. It’s more akin to running a marathon than sprinting. This is a process over many years.

To succeed requires endurance but also dedication and an eager willingness for continued learning.

Trading might look easy but don’t fool yourself. It’s very difficult, and most traders lose.

How to put stop loss in equity trading?

You put a stop loss in equity trading by determining a level where you want to get out of the trade due to unfavorable risk and reward. This is something you do BEFORE you make the trade.

A stop loss acts as your safeguard against unexpected downturns—it’s designed to catch you if things go south. This tool ensures an investor’s losses are contained by executing a market trade when it hits a specific price level that has been determined in advance.

However, as you starts to reap profits from a trade, you can adjust your stop-loss order upwards to shield some of those gains—for instance, following an uptick in price, setting the new stop-loss at an elevated point might preserve around 50% of the accrued profit.

Equity traders have access to various forms of stop-loss orders. However, just setting an arbitrary stop loss is not particularly useful, according to the statistics we have gathered over tens of thousands backtests we have done over the years. A stop loss is established as a must-have, but the facts suggest otherwise:

What does equity mean in forex trading?

In Forex trading, equity refers to the total value of a trader’s account, including the account balance and the floating profits or losses from open positions.

It encompasses the cumulative value within a trader’s account, which accounts for all open positions as well as the unused margin. Should a forex trader hold no active positions, their equity mirrors that of their account balance. In instances where there are active trades, equity combines both the static balance of the account with any unrealized gains or losses stemming from those ongoing transactions.

Essentially, it acts as an immediate reflection of the net asset value tied to one’s trading account. Thus offering a real-time indication of a trader’s financial stance and net assets currently engaged in market activities.

Thus, it has a different meaning than equity in companies.

Trading equities vs forex

Buying and selling shares in a company, equity trading is dependent on the company’s performance and overarching economic conditions for profitability.

In contrast, forex trading capitalizes on changes in currency values to generate potential profits by exchanging currencies.

As a forex trader, you have no ownership and can’t snowball and compound. Because of this, we believe it’s much better to trade stocks than forex. There are many reasons to avoid forex trading.

Equity trading typically requires more upfront investment and allows for less leverage than forex trading, enabling traders to begin with smaller sums but offering greater leverage.

Each avenue presents distinct prospects as well as obstacles. Ultimately, deciding between them hinges upon personal tastes regarding risk acceptance and specific financial objectives.


We have touched upon a small fraction in this article, and hopefully, you know a bit more about the prospects of equity trading.

While equity trading offers exciting opportunities, it also requires careful planning, thorough research, and prudent decision-making. As we conclude, remember that you should keep learning, stay curious, and may your trading journey be successful.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is an equity trading?

Trading equity involves purchasing and selling stocks or company shares on the financial market, which can occur via a stock exchange or through over-the-counter transactions. This practice serves as a method for investing in the shares of public companies.

How do I start trading in equity?

Begin equity trading by setting up a live account through an internet-based brokerage, acquaint yourself with the various trading instruments at your disposal, and proceed to execute knowledgeable investment choices by trading small size. Recognizing the inherent risks associated with this endeavor is crucial. Don’t hesitate to consult a financial advisor for guidance when necessary.

Is equity trading risky?

Indeed, the nature of equity trading entails risk on account of market fluctuations, which necessitates ongoing research and analysis to inform prudent investment choices.

What’s the difference between equity and stocks?

Equity signifies an ownership stake in a company, whereas stocks are the securities that embody this form of ownership. Grasping this difference is crucial when exploring investment opportunities.

What’s a stop loss in equity trading?

A stop loss function by automatically executing the sale of a security once it hits a predetermined price point. This mechanism serves as an essential tool for traders to manage risk and cap potential losses.

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