May 22, 2019 | 06:08 AM


17.08.2018Weekend trading: How to maximise Saturday and Sunday success

For a trader who also trades during the week, the main benefit of weekend trading is the opportunity to earn more cash.

Trading the stock, forex or CFD markets may seem like a job that’s so stressful it takes the full weekend to recover from. But while making key investment decisions is by no means relaxing, some traders are so passionate about their work that they keep going over the weekend. For others, their “weekend” may actually be during the week – and Saturdays and Sundays are days when their trading experience comes to life. “Weekend trading”, as it is known, is a way of life for some investors – and like any form of trading, it comes with both advantages and disadvantages.

The positives

For a trader who also trades during the week, the main benefit of weekend trading is the opportunity to earn more cash. Trades not placed on the weekend can be seen as missed opportunities to make money and improve portfolios. But this tends to apply more to experienced traders who know what they’re doing. For newer traders, trading at the weekend as well as during the week could simply increase the chances of wiping out a deposit.

But weekend trading isn’t just for people who spend all of their time trading and decide they need to do more. It’s also designed for amateur retail traders who have other full-time occupations during the week, possibly in fields completely unrelated to finance. Teachers, for example, will find it impossible to open up their laptops and start trading while they’re in class on a Tuesday afternoon. But with weekend trading, they have the chance to participate.

The drawbacks

As anyone who’s familiar with the financial markets will know, a lot of places close down on Fridays and stay shut until Monday. In an age when there’s so much to do seven days a week, this may seem like a bit of an anachronism – but it’s a tradition that the sector has stuck to. For weekend traders, this poses an obvious challenge: what is there to trade when so much is closed for a two-day break?

The answer is, sadly, not much. There’s a much more restricted set of options available to a weekend trader compared to a weekday trader, and it takes some work to get it right. The London Stock Exchange, for example, shuts up shop completely at the weekend – which means trading shares in the British-listed arms of firms like Experian or Barclays will be impossible. The same goes for the Australian Securities Exchange, which closes at 16:00 AEST on Friday and re-opens at 10:00 on Monday. And while derivative products like CFDs may appear at first glance to be dynamic enough to operate for the whole week, they rely on the activity of their underlying market in order to function – so even they are often not accessible on weekends.

Market stability

Weekends are also arguably somewhat less stable than their weekday counterparts, and this can lead to traders getting seriously burned. When looking for signals in market data charts, for example, one of the aims is to work out the intent of the other traders and use that to inform decisions on which way the market will go. But when there are fewer traders involved (as happens at the weekend), the rogue actions of just a handful can send the market going in a completely unexpected direction.

Saturdays and Sundays may look to many like a time for relaxation, but for weekend traders, they’re days to make the most of what the trading world has to offer. And while there are some restrictions in place when it comes to weekend trading, there are also plenty of reasons to get involved. From the scheduling benefits it offers to the chance it provides to improve earnings, it’s easy to see why dedicated traders give up their days off in order to expand their portfolios and achieve greater trading success.

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