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Top six futures trading mistakes and how to avoid them

Futures trading can be a lucrative and meaningful way to invest. It involves agreeing to purchase or sell assets, such as commodities, currencies, or stocks, at a set price on a predetermined date in the future. This type of investment requires careful monitoring and management of risks since there is significant potential for loss if markets move against positions taken by traders.

As with any investment strategy, it’s essential to understand which mistakes can be made when engaging in futures trading and how best to avoid them. This article looks at the top six mistakes made when trading futures and suggests strategies for avoiding or mitigating these errors.

Not having an entry plan

One of the most commonly made mistakes in futures trading is needing an entry plan before entering into trades. With an entry plan outlining your strategy for entering and exiting positions, you may be clear and confident about when to enter or exit a trade to make the most profits.

Not having a stop-loss plan

Another common mistake futures traders make is not having a stop-loss plan before entering positions. A stop-loss order is an instruction you give your broker to close out your position once it reaches a specific price, allowing you to limit potential losses and maintain control of your trading account. Without this risk management tool, you may be subjecting yourself to more significant losses than expected.

Ignoring market conditions

Many traders need to pay more attention to market conditions when making trades instead of focusing purely on their analysis of the markets. While this can sometimes be beneficial, it’s important to remember that fundamental and technical factors will always play a role in the markets and should not be ignored.

Not having a risk management strategy

Futures trading is inherently risky, so it’s essential to have a risk management strategy before entering into trades. This strategy should outline your maximum risk on each trade and how much you will lose in any given position. Having this plan in place ahead of time will help you stay disciplined and limit potential losses.


Overtrading is another common mistake made by futures traders. It occurs when they take too many positions at once or trade too frequently without taking the necessary precautions, such as setting stop-loss orders or scaling out of positions when profits become significant. Overtrading can lead to significant losses if not managed properly.

Relying too heavily on technical analysis

Another mistake many traders make is relying too heavily on technical analysis. While technical analysis can be an excellent tool for learning more about the markets and potential trading opportunities, it should always be considered the sole source of information when entering into trades. Fundamental factors such as economic news announcements or political developments still play a significant role in market conditions and should always be considered before taking any position.

How to start trading futures in the UK

Starting to trade futures in the UK requires careful consideration and planning. Before investing, you should research the markets available, familiarise yourself with the trading platforms and brokers used, and assess your knowledge, experience, and risk tolerance.

When beginning to trade futures in the UK, the first step is familiarising yourself with the market environment. It means researching the various markets and instruments available for trading. You should consider what type of asset you want to invest in, such as commodities, stocks or currencies, and what strategy you want to use. Make sure that you understand how futures contracts work and how they are priced so that you can make informed decisions about when to enter or exit positions.

You should also research different trading platforms available in the UK and select one that meets your needs. Different trading platforms offer varying levels of security and features, so finding one that offers a reliable user experience is essential. It would be best to look for a platform that provides access to real-time market data and tools, such as charting software and automated trading systems, which can help simplify your trading process.

Assess your knowledge level when starting to trade futures in the UK; if you’re new to this type of investment, starting with paper trading accounts is wise, where you can learn more about how markets function without putting any real money at risk. As you gain experience, seek professional advice from an experienced broker who will be able to advise you on strategies best suited for your individual goals.


Futures trading is an exciting and potentially lucrative way to make profits, but inevitable mistakes must be avoided to succeed at this type of trading. By avoiding the top six futures trading mistakes outlined in this article, you will be well-positioned to make consistent and profitable trades. Remember to always have an entry plan, a stop-loss order, consider market conditions, formulate a risk management strategy, avoid overtrading and never rely too heavily on technical analysis when making decisions. Considering these points, you will be better equipped to make successful trades and minimise potential losses.

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