Simulated Trading Account Portfolio Updates

When using a Simulated Trading Account, making sure you get Portfolio updates, either automatically if available, or by physically logging in to your account, is an often, or should I say - easily, overlooked aspect.

Note: The account I use and you'll see me referring to, is using my free Simulated Stock Trading account at Wall Street Survivor where you can practice trading, test different strategies and have the chance to win weekly cash prizes.

Getting or checking on your portfolio is something you'll have to learn, and set up some sort of system, preferably in writing, so you will always remember to check on any open positions you may have.

For most people, most of the time, this isn't a problem. That's because once people start trading, they get emotionally involved and excited over the prospect of winning.

There may/will be times though, when you want to take a break or just pullback from your trading activities to focus on other things. What happens when you do take a break, and have an open position? If you forget about the open position? This is why and when, getting portfolio updates somehow, is important.

Here's an example: On November 19, 2009 I purchased shares of DZZ in my Simulated Trading Account at $13.83. I've placed a few trades over the last few months in this account, but until this morning, 7 months after I opened my position in DZZ, I hadn't remembered or noticed that I still had this position open. (not too smart, I know)

Since that time, DZZ has gone up to $15.00 and down to $10.35, and is currently at $11.26. While I could have entered Profit Target and Stop Loss orders for my position, I did not in this case.

In my case, there were times shortly after I entered my position to walk away with profits near 10% within 3 months of my entry price. Had I been monitoring my portfolio more closely, there's a good chance I would have taken my profits while they were available. Instead, I now have an unrealized loss of near 20%, although looking at the current chart of DZZ, it appears to be at a nice potential entry level again, in my opinion. That's for another article though.

The point for this article, is as I mentioned above, to have some sort of monitoring system to check on your portfolio regularly. Whether that be by physically logging in to your account (probably the best way), or by setting up email alerts thru your account.

On my real/live trading accounts, I always try to set up end of day portfolio position alerts to be sent to me via email. If you have or open a Wall Street Survivor trading account, once logged in to your account you can go to the 2nd menu tab near the top of the screen that says "My Portfolios" then go to "MY preferences -> Notifications" and then down to "Trading Messages". There you can set up "Trade Confirmations" and "Weekly Portfolio Updates".

Note: For some reason, they only provide "Weekly Portfolio Notifications" for positions in the "Contest Portfolio". They have 2 different portfolios available when you open a free account, a "Contest Portfolio" and a "Permanent Portfolio". More on these in another article in a few days. Maybe they will add this functionality to the "Permanent Portfolio" in the near future.

Simulated Trading Portfolio Updates

While forgetting about an open position may not be a big deal in a Simulated Trading Account, it's a good idea to get used to checking on positions for when you begin to trade in a live account. Otherwise you may get into a bad habit of not checking.

Why not set up your own free Simulated Trading Account and give it a try.
It's Fun, Free, Easy to Use & Somewhat Realistic - and You Could Win Cash & Prizes. Try it Today! Wall Street Survivor Virtual Stock Game

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