One question I always ask myself before committing to time, money, or other resource is this: what will I get out of it? Simply put, is it worth it for me? There’s a term for my line of questioning: risk reward. The risk reward profile of an investment or trade is a way to determine the potential return based on the amount of risk it poses. It’s used by traders, investors, and pretty much anyone to evaluate investments. But anyone who wants to make smarter financial decisions can also be used.
The concept is fairly simple: every investment has some risk. Some are less risky than others, while others are more risky. By measuring how much money you could earn versus how much you would lose, you can determine how attractive each investment opportunity might be.
We’ll cover how this works in detail below!
Table of Contents
- What Is the Risk Reward Profile?
- The Most Common Risk Reward Profiles for Day Trades
- Protect Yourself From Risk by Trading in a Simulator
What Is the Risk Reward Profile?
The risk reward profile measures the risk taken and the expected return. It can be used to compare different opportunities or situations you’re considering, like deciding between two jobs or investments.
How To Calculate The Risk Reward Profile
To calculate the risk/reward ratio, divide the potential loss by the potential profit.
Here is the formula:
Potential loss / potential profit = risk/reward ratio
This will be helpful for the risk reward profile setup. Any time you can limit risk and get a good reward is a good setup!
Personal Risk Tolerance in Trading
Your personal risk tolerance measures how much risk you will take to achieve your goals. There are many ways to measure risk tolerance, but they all boil down to how comfortable you are with the possibility of losing money. Your level of comfort with risk may change over time, so it’s important to periodically review your current level to ensure it still reflects your needs and goals. Know your risk reward profile for profitable trading!
The Most Common Risk Reward Profiles for Day Trades
So, how does one decide how much money they want to risk when trading? Unfortunately, you won’t get a black-and-white answer. It all depends on different factors. Firstly, it depends on where you are in your trading journey: are you new or seasoned? Secondly, what is your strategy?
You may also hear people talk about “1:1” or “3:1” ratios–these refer to the amount of money being risked compared with how much money can be made due to taking that risk. There are several different risk reward profiles that you can use when day trading. Generally, however, most risk/reward profiles range between 1:2 and 1:5. Anything lower than this is considered extremely risky, whereas anything above is considered highly conservative.
The most common risk-reward ratio is 1:2. When trading with a 1:2 ratio, you risk \$100 to make \$200 on a trade. That would be your risk reward profile.
The Problem With a Low Risk Reward Profile
If you find yourself in a situation with abnormally low risk and a very high return ratio, it may be a risky investment. Err on the side of caution, as this does not guarantee a good investment even if the risk reward profile is tempting.
Protect Yourself From Risk by Using a Stop Loss
A stop loss is a type of order that can be used in trading to limit losses. It’s a pre-defined price level at which a position will be exited automatically. This helps keep your risk reward profile in tact.
If a trade moves against the trader, they may want to set up a stop-loss order to help mitigate risk and avoid further losses. For example, if a trader buys shares at $10 and has set their stop loss (also known as stop price) at $9.50, then their trade will be automatically closed when the price drops below $9.50 or rises above $11 (depending on whether it’s a market or limit order).
Stop orders can be used in any security or asset class. They’re especially useful for traders who aren’t able to monitor their positions throughout the day because they’re busy with other things (such as work).
Protect Yourself From Risk by Trading in a Simulator
If you have never traded or have limited experience, Bullish Bears recommends starting in a simulator with low-risk small trades. There’s no need to blow up your account.
During this time, you’ll gain confidence in deciding when to enter or exit positions. As time passes and your knowledge increases along with experience from trading real money rather than paper trading (simulating), the size of trades gradually increases.
One Simulator We Really Like
The Thinkorswim trading simulator is a free online platform that lets you practice and hone your trading skills. This tool is provided by TD Ameritrade, one of the largest financial services providers in America, and it’s designed to help you learn how to trade stocks, options, and ETFs.
This platform has several features that make it easy for beginners to get started with the basics of trading without risking any real money. If you’re a beginner who wants to learn how to trade stocks, no other tools can compare with this one!
The Thinkorswim simulator gives you full control over your trades and allows you to try different strategies without spending money on real stocks or other investments. There are many different ways to use their platform:
You can practice buying and selling stocks before you invest in real ones
You can learn how different strategies work before deciding which ones will work best for your needs
You can test out different investment strategies without risking any actual money
We hope this article has helped you understand the risk reward profile, how it can be used in trading, and how to apply it in your life. We want to stress that there is no right or wrong way of approaching this concept. The most important thing is to find what works best for you and stick with it!