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What Is a News Trader?

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  • Written By: Mary McMahon
  • Edited By: Shereen Skola
  • Last Modified Date: 24 November 2016
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    Conjecture Corporation
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A news trader makes decisions on the basis of breaking news events. This is one among many strategies investors can use to develop a coherent trading plan to achieve consistent and sustainable results. Success rates for news traders can depend on how rapidly they react to events and whether they are able to accurately predict market movements so they make sound decisions as major news breaks. This can be a risky endeavor for people without extensive experience.

Also known as "trading the news," this involves closely following news events under the assumption that they will impact market performance. This can include news in a variety of subject areas; green stocks might rise, for example, in response to a newly announced energy efficiency program, while stock in entertainment companies could change in value after a major announcement like a cancellation. The news trader can follow several sources including networks that update in real time, websites, and trade publications to keep up with events.

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Investors tend to take short positions when they trade the news, because they may need to prepare for more buying or selling in response to sudden market shifts. Their investments may be more volatile and their behavior can itself contribute to changes in market value. For example, if large numbers of investors sell off stocks due to worries about a decline in value in response to a news event, the price of those stocks will probably fall. This news trader herd mentality can create a snowball effect, where prices rise or fall dramatically because traders follow each other.

Casual day traders may take a news trading approach as part of their investment plan because it can be easy to identify and respond to significant news items. For more experienced investors working full time in the industry, this strategy may involve more careful analysis and consideration. They can consider past events after similar news items, emerging trends, and market projections that might impact the effect of an event on securities pricing. The news trader may have large volumes of investments and wants to make a sound choice.

Strategies for the news trader may be discussed in forums, textbooks, and websites. People learning their trade may start out with simulations before plunging into trades with actual money so they can get familiar with the setting and learn how to respond to news events. Some seek out mentors to help them develop trading schemes and maintain a consistent long-term plan.

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