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Some Tips for Risk Management in Trading

In trading, risk management is the key to maintaining account stability and ensuring long-term success. Rick Wright, an experienced trader and instructor at the Online Trading Academy, considers risk management the "holy grail" of trading. Here are some practical risk management tips based on his experience:

1. Risk Per Trade Between 0.5% to 2% of Account Balance

What is Risk Per Trade? Risk per trade is the percentage of your account balance that you are willing to risk on a single trade. This helps you avoid large losses that can threaten your overall trading capital.

How to Set Risk:

  • General Rule: Risk per trade should be between 0.5% and 2% of your account balance.
  • Example:
    • If your account balance is $10,000, the risk per trade should be between $50 and $200.
    • If you use a 2% risk per trade and lose 5 consecutive trades, you still have 90% of your initial balance for future trades.


  • Prevent Margin Call: Avoid large losses that can lead to a margin call.
  • Give Opportunity: You have enough capital to continue trading even after some losses.


  • Use Stop Loss: Always set a stop loss on each trade to ensure the risk does not exceed the predetermined limit.

2. Limit the Number of Trading Positions to No More Than 4 at a Time

What is Position Limiting? Position limiting means not opening too many trading positions at once to avoid excessive risk.

How to Manage Positions:

  • General Rule: A maximum of 4 open positions at one time.
  • Example:
    • If you have 4 positions with each having 2% risk, the total risk is 8% of the account balance if all positions incur a loss.


  • Avoid Overtrading: Helps you manage and monitor positions more effectively.
  • Reduce Risk: Reduces the likelihood of large losses from too many uncontrolled positions.


  • Evaluate Positions: Ensure you have a plan for each position you open.

3. Determine Trading Frequency Per Day, Week, or Month

What is Trading Frequency? Trading frequency is how often you trade within a specific time period.

How to Set Frequency:

  • General Rule: Set how many trades you will make in a day, week, or month.
  • Example:
    • If you are a swing trader, you might trade 2-3 times a week.
    • If you are a day trader, you might make 5-10 trades in a day.


  • Time Management: Helps you manage time and energy for trading.
  • Trading Journal: Simplifies creating a trading journal and evaluating strategies.


  • Create a Trading Plan: Include trading frequency in your trading plan to maintain discipline.

4. Reduce Lot Size When Trading Against the Trend

What is Adjusted Lot Size? This is a strategy to reduce risk by reducing the lot size when trading against the main trend.

How to Adjust Lot Size:

  • General Rule: Halve the lot size when trading against the main trend.
  • Example:
    • If you usually trade with 2 lots in the main trend, use 1 lot when trading against the main trend.


  • Reduce Risk: Minimizes risk when trading against the main trend.
  • Increase Opportunity: Helps you stay in the market during volatile conditions.


  • Use Technical Analysis: Ensure your analysis supports the decision to trade against the trend.

5. Set a Percentage Risk Per Day or Week

What is Percentage Risk? Percentage risk is the total risk limit you allow within a specific time period.

How to Set Percentage Risk:

  • General Rule: Set a maximum risk percentage per day or week.
  • Example:
    • If you set a 5% daily risk and your account is $10,000, the maximum daily risk is $500.


  • Avoid Overtrading: Helps you not exceed daily or weekly risk limits.
  • Manage Losses: Ensures losses do not exceed the limits you set.


  • Monitor Your Risk: Regularly check if you are approaching the set risk limit.

6. Use Trailing Stop or Move Stop Loss When Profitable

What is a Trailing Stop? A trailing stop is a tool to protect profits by moving the stop loss level as the price moves in a favorable direction.

How to Use a Trailing Stop:

  • General Rule: Apply a trailing stop to protect profit when the price moves in a favorable direction.
  • Example:
    • If the price rises to 1.5100 and you have a trailing stop at 1.5050, you can move the trailing stop to the 1.5075 level.


  • Protect Profit: Helps secure profit as the price moves higher.
  • Automatic: Allows you to protect profit without constantly monitoring the market.


  • Set Trailing Stop Distance: Adjust the trailing stop distance according to market volatility.

Risk management is an essential aspect of trading that must be addressed to achieve long-term success. By following tips from Rick Wright, such as setting the risk per trade, managing the number of positions, and using trailing stops, you can better manage risk and improve your trading opportunities.


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