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When asked how I’m able to stay on top year after year.

Honestly, I have to give a lot of the credit to the fact that I make it a daily habit to prepare in advance.

Preparation is key…

And creating a watchlist of stocks to trade the night before is one example of that.

If you can’t commit to making this a daily habit, or just don’t want to… I actually provide my clients with video watchlists… so they know exactly what to trade on any given day.

 

 

Why I Do This

 

Simply put, you don’t want a list full of a bunch of random stocks. You want it full of stocks that are ripe for trading. 

Stocks that could present good trade setups the very next day.

There are simply too many stocks to keep track off, way too many.

So what will you do in the morning if you are starting from scratch?

Most likely you’ll end up overwhelmed and anxious and pressured to find something to trade as quickly as possible, creating some forced trades… and inevitably missing some great ones.

This is why I like to have a plan going into the day and having a watchlist is at the root of that plan.

This is my way of getting a head start on the trading day.

 

How to Create a Watchlist

 

Well first off, you need a strategy in order to know what you look for in a trade, or you shouldn’t be trading at all. Let’s assume you do (if not click here).

When you know what makes a great trade, it’s easy to put together a watchlist.

In fact, it only takes me a few minutes each night.

There are a number of things you can look at when building your watchlist. This will depend on your system.

Some of the things I might be looking for include:

  1. Stocks in play the day before – you just finished trading… that alone should produce at least one good candidate to watch tomorrow.
  2. Don’t be afraid to go back to another recent watchlist to look for setups too
  3. Stocks you trade well… or recent good trades are another good place to look
  4. Your criteria for trades
    1. Highest percentage movers – this is a big one in penny stocks
    2. Breakouts – One of my favorite trades is the breakout, so I will be watching for stocks that broke above consolidation, a previous high, or are trading close to those levels
    3. Check news – this is a good one to potentially find catalysts for the next day… something that will be in play. I don’t spend much time on this myself as I believe the charts will tell the story. For example- if a catalyst has legs, it will be a top percentage mover, show high volume and break out… all things I look for in charts.
    4. Chart patterns – I use a number of chart patterns in my trading setups. When creating a watchlist, it is good to keep an eye on stocks that have formed or are forming those patterns. (learn my patterns here).

Once you know the criteria for a good trade… you need to find stocks that match. Sounds daunting, I know.

But it’s really as easy as using a stock screener to scan for your criteria. If you didn’t catch my article on screening for winning trades…  check it out here.

The screener will come back with a list of stocks matching your inputs. From there, you need to narrow it down to the stocks that are best set up for trading Right Now.

And that’s as easy as looking at charts…

With your scan completed, you just scroll through the list in “chart form” really quick… finding the ones that fit your criteria for trading.

All that’s left is to actually make the list.

But don’t just write down the symbols…

What happens in the heat of the moment when you pull up the stock and it’s moving, but all you have is a symbol on a piece of paper?

Make the list with details for a trade plan.

Important price levels, chart pattern, where a breakout would occur, where the next resistance is at, where support is…

What do you need to see for this to be a trade?

Look at the watchlist as your preliminary trade plan.

I don’t start my day without a watchlist and it’s important enough that every evening I send my watchlist out to members as a video.

This allows me to quickly walk them through the charts of each stock, as well as talk through the detailed plans for trading them… get access here.

 

 

And as you can see in the above image, it’s only a few minutes long so it won’t take all night for you to have a plan for tomorrow.

 

Putting It To Use

 

First off, keep it on your screen where you are always aware of the stocks. Depending on your broker, there are all sorts of boardviews and ticker boards etc.

Just enter all of the watchlist stocks into one window so you can see the price and changes all in one place.

And with a mental note on price levels, you can pretty much know if it’s getting to an area of interest or not, just with a glance.

Second… Set Alerts!

Something as simple as an alert can save you from missing a massive trade while you place your next order for Grim Bean Coffee on the internet…

… and save everyone at your next happy hour from hearing the story of how you missed the perfect trade.

And guess what? They won’t believe you anyway… so just set the alert.

It should go without saying, but use your watchlist to make trades according to your plan.

You spent the time to find the right stocks to watch. You created a plan for each of those stocks.

Now show the patience to wait for the right setup. Only trade the stocks that actually set up according to your plan.

There will be days where none of them do and days where you have too many setups to take them all… but either way, with a watchlist we are always ready.

By using a watchlist, I am able to find trades like this one in (OPTI). After breaking resistance OPTI made a monster move up.

It then pulled back to the breakout point, now acting as support, and then again rocketed higher from there.

 

 

By scanning for stocks matching my trading parameters and adding them to a watchlist for the next day, I am able to find trades like this…

And stay consistently profitable even when so many others aren’t.

In fact my last small account challenge produced a 2,051% return in 58 trading days.*

That’s right, I took a tiny $500 account and turned it into $10,758… in just 58 trading days.*

It pays to be prepared…

I make it a point to be… and you can too.

Get access to my trading strategy, nightly video watchlists, live trading room, superior live daily training, and so much more… Sign Up for Profit Prism Platinum Now

Author: Jeff Williams

Jeff Williams is a full-time day trader with over 15 years experience. Thousands of entry-level and experienced traders alike – day-traders and swing-trade small cap stock traders – credit Jeff with guiding them to turning small accounts into big accounts.

Jeff’s "Small Account Challenge" shows people how to transform accounts from a few thousand dollars into $25k, $50k or even $100k.

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