Simple Watchlist Tips: Key Takeaways
- See how a watchlist can help you monitor and plan potential trades…
- Learn the keys to building a simple and clean watchlist…
- Discover the platform that makes watchlist-building easy…
One of the most important things you can do in trading is to prepare. That means having a list of viable stocks ready to go in any type of market.
Trading platforms — like StocksToTrade — give you the ability to create multiple watchlists. That makes it easier to monitor the criteria you need to see. Read on to find out how to build and maintain your watchlist.
Table of Contents
Smart Tips on How to Build a Watchlist
It’s up to you to decide how to best use watchlists. Every trader’s different. So dive in and try some things that work for you. Sort by market cap, strategy (like day trade vs. swing trade), or whatever works best for you.
And you can keep as many watchlists as you like. (StocksToTrade makes that simple, BTW.)
Bottom line: Find your watchlist flow. Don’t be afraid to experiment. Here are some watchlist-building essentials.
1. Keep Your Watchlist Simple and Fresh
Create separate watchlists based on current factors. And use your previous watchlists as a reminder of the research you’ve done to help fine-tune your trading in the future.
Go through your list often. Plan a personal schedule of how often you’ll comb through your lists to see if stocks still match your trading criteria.
What should you look for? Some traders like to start with big percent gainers, then filter by float, volume, and other indicators.
Once stocks on your list no longer meet what you’re looking for, remove them. Keep a list of stocks that are close to potential entries.
Removing a stock doesn’t have to be permanent. If it comes back on your radar, add it back to your list.
Trimming your list regularly can keep you from feeling overwhelmed.
And consider capping your list off at a number that’s comfortable for you to manage. That way, you don’t have a huge volume of stocks to watch. Too many stocks can cut focus.
Typically, 12–16 is a safe number to aim for. But you do you.
2. Filter Down to a Focused Watchlist
Be a deductive reasoner when you’re on the hunt for stocks to trade.
Start with broader sets of criteria. Then as you watch trends, narrow down to the stocks that best suit your go-to setups.
Know what you’re looking for. That can take time. Maybe start bigger and slowly weed out stocks that don’t work for you. That gives you a clean, effective database to work from.
The stock market constantly changes, so you have to constantly change your list to keep up.
Try to have a specific focus from the get-go. And know that from day one, narrowing it down is necessary.
3. Play Favorites
It’s smart to keep an eye on stocks that are already popular. That helps you see why popular picks are, well, popular.
Learn from that. What’s the volume, the catalyst, the pattern?
Plus, big movers set the stage for you to watch downtrends and uptrends. Then you can compare them to the stocks that you’re considering trading.
Over time as you learn, you’ll have your own favorite stocks to watch. And if you day trade, you’ll often find low-priced stocks with room to spike. Just be ready for the inevitable fall.
4. Find What YOU Want
Scan the market and know the specific criteria you’re seeking. There are countless factors to consider here, and your preferences may fluctuate with time.
Filter by one criterion at a time. Remember, you can make multiple lists for different factors.
Common scanning techniques include:
- Analyzing patterns for trend changes
- Looking for unusual trends, such as a relatively low change in price with a high increase in average daily volume
- Spotting big daily percent gainers — especially with higher than average daily volume
- Finding stocks that recently hit 52-week highs or 52-week lows
5. Stay in the Know
Building and maintaining an efficient watchlist requires knowledge of the stock market environment. And boy, does that come at a learning curve.
It may take some work, but I think the rewards are worth it. For one, the market’s never boring. And two, it helps you better understand which stocks might be in play.
And know where we are in economic cycles.
All these things can factor into your watchlists. Yep, there’s a lot to consider. Do the best you can and keep working to improve every day — even 1%.
Over time, you’ll cultivate your trading style and get more comfortable quickly assessing the stocks on your list.
Settle into a strategy, get up on the trends, and prepare to nail the stocks that fit your setups.
Ready to Build Your Watchlist?
StocksToTrade was built by traders for traders. We designed it to help you cut the amount of time you spend looking for awesome trade opportunities daily.
Find the stocks that matter to YOU!
You can also get a head start on your watchlist by subscribing to mine! I deliver a list of stocks that I’m watching for the upcoming week to your inbox every Sunday night.
And the best part? It doesn’t cost a dime! Subscribe to my watchlist today.
The Watchlist Conclusion
Preparation is key in trading. But you know that already.
So get cracking on your plans or risk getting shaken out…
I want to teach you how to be a self-sufficient trader so you don’t need me around all the time. And if you’re ready for more, I’m here to help…
- You can catch me in Pre-Market Prep every weekday at 8:30 a.m. Eastern … I discuss the most interesting stocks to watch for the day. And it’s free!
- Need more assistance? I work closely with members of the SteadyTrade Team mentorship community. I can give twice daily webinars, share my screens, and provide trading training for traders just like you. Join us!
Now get to work on your watchlist.
What do you think about these watchlist tips? What’s your strategy for building and maintaining a watchlist? Let me know with a comment below!