Definition of commercial strategy

What is a business strategy?

A trading strategy is a systematic methodology used to buy and sell on the stock markets. A trading strategy is based on predefined rules and criteria that are used when making trading decisions.

A trading strategy can be simple or complex and involve considerations such as investment style (for example, value versus growth), market capitalization, technical indicators, fundamental analysis, industry sector, level of portfolio diversification, time horizon or holding period, risk tolerance, leverage, tax considerations, etc. The key is that a business strategy is established using objective data and analysis and is followed diligently. At the same time, a trading strategy needs to be reassessed and adjusted periodically as market conditions or individual goals change.

Key takeaways

  • A trading strategy can be compared to a trading plan that takes into account various factors and demands for an investor.
  • A trading strategy generally consists of three stages: planning, placing trades, and executing trades.
  • At each stage of the process, strategy-related metrics are measured and changed based on changes in the markets.
  • Most trading strategies are based on technical or fundamental aspects, and use measurable information that can be checked to determine accuracy.

Understanding of business strategies

A business strategy includes a well-considered trading and investment plan that specifies investment objectives, risk tolerance, time horizon, and tax implications. Ideas and best practices need to be researched and adopted and then implemented. Trading planning includes developing methods that include buying or selling stocks, bonds, ETFs, or other investments and can be extended to more complex operations, such as options or futures.

Trading means working with a broker or stockbroker and identifying and managing trading costs, including spreads, commissions, and fees. Once executed, trade positions are monitored and managed, including adjusting or closing as required. Risk and return are measured, as well as the impacts of operations on the portfolio and the tax implications.

The long-term tax results of trading are an important factor and may encompass strategies to collect capital gains or tax losses to offset gains with losses.

Develop a business strategy

There are many types of trading strategies, but they are largely based on technical or fundamental aspects. The common denominator is that both are based on quantifiable information that can be checked for accuracy. Technical trading strategies are based on technical indicators to generate trading signals. Technical traders believe that all information about a given security is contained in its price and that it moves in trends. For example, a simple trading strategy can be a moving average crossover whereby a short-term moving average crosses above or below a long-term moving average.

Fundamental trading strategies take into account fundamental factors. For example, an investor may have a set of selection criteria to generate a list of opportunities. These criteria are developed by analyzing factors such as revenue growth and profitability.

There is a third type of business strategy that has gained prominence in recent times. A quantitative trading strategy is similar to technical trading in that it uses information related to stocks to arrive at a buy or sell decision. However, the matrix of factors you take into account to reach a buy or sell decision regarding a security is considerably higher compared to technical analysis. A quantitative trader uses various data points (regression analysis of trading ratios, technical data, price) to exploit market inefficiencies and make quick transactions using technology.

Special Considerations

Trading strategies are employed to avoid financial behavior biases and ensure consistent results. For example, traders who follow the rules governing when to exit a trade would be less likely to succumb to the disposition effect, causing investors to hold onto stocks that have lost value and sell those that increase in value. Trading strategies can be stress tested under different market conditions to measure consistency.

However, it is difficult to develop profitable trading strategies and there is a risk of relying too much on one strategy. For example, a trader can fit a trading strategy curve to specific backtesting data, which can lead to false confidence. The strategy may have worked well in theory based on past market data, but past performance does not guarantee future success under real-time market conditions, which can vary significantly from the trial period.

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Mark Holland

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