Not all traders make gains from trading, since this is a zero-sum game (for everyone who benefits someone else loses on the other side).The Altcoins market is driven by large whales (yes, the same ones responsible for placing huge blocks of hundreds of Bitcoins on the order book). The whales are just waiting patiently for innocent little fish like us to make mistakes. Even if you aspire to trade on a daily basis, sometimes it is better not to earn and do nothing, instead of jumping into the rushing water and exposing your coins to losses. From my experience, there are days where you only keep your profits by not trading at all.
There are a number of tools you can use to maximize profits and minimize risks, such as margin trading, leverage, and stop-loss orders. Shorting Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies can be done in a variety of ways. Just looking at the Bitcoin price chart for early 2018, you can see that those that spotted the downward trend in mid January and made a short trade would have made 40% profits by exiting one month later.
A “manageable amount” is obviously subjective and will vary for each person based on things such as time available to dedicate to trading. Feel free to do your own research to find the right exchange for you. I tend to value user experience of an exchange over the amount of coins on it. Ultimately, what exchanges you use is going to depend on your own personal preferences. GDAX and Poloniex will provide sufficient resources needed to be a successful trader, so they are definitely a good place to start.
TIP: The tips and tricks below shouldn’t be mistaken for professional investment advice; instead this is basic friendly advice to mull over. If you want professional investment advice, consult a fiduciary. For a shorter list that zeros in on some key points, see: 5 Tips for New Crypto Traders. See also, how to trade and invest in cryptocurrency and our crypto investing / trading starter kit.
I’m not going to go too deep into other ways you can earn money with cryptocurrencies because I don’t do them myself. At least not right now. Passive income is great. After you make an initial investment, you mostly sit back and watch the money roll in. It’s like buying a home and renting it out - there will be some maintenance issues but it’s mostly passive income.
As I mentioned before, the Binance exchange fees are really very reasonable and Binance charges just 0.1% on the value of a trade which is less than many of the other popular cryptocurrency trading exchange platforms. It’s free to deposit coins into Binance and you can even cut the trading fees in half if you pay with Binance’s very own coin – The Binance coin. This is probably only worth doing if you are trading tens of thousands of dollars worth of crypto at a time.
Investing and especially trading, is a highly skilled task. You need the best equipment, execution and tools. When the market is only going up any fool can make money but that blessed state never lasts long and what is left is an environment requiring focus, skill and discipline. To succeed unlike the devastated cohorts of dotcom and the real estate bubble, you have to work hard at it.
Update 1st October 2018: The cryptocurrency market has been volatile as ever over the last 6 months. Unless you are a skilled trader, it is harder to make money in a bear market than in a bull market – and we have been in a bear market for some time now. Personally, I have stopped trading and I am now focussing on growing my portfolio passively using a cryptocurrency trading bot – you can find out more about this here. If you are new to crypto, read on!
Always learn from your mistakes. Never accept a total loss. Always evaluate the situation and try to figure out why it happened. Take that experience as an asset for your next move, which will be better because you are know more now than you knew before. We all start off as amateurs, and we have all lost money throughout out trading experience. In his first month of trading, Miles went from $1,000 to $300. I’ve lost a lot by selling at losses inspired by fear. No one is perfect, no one wins every single trade. Don’t let the losses discourage you, because the reality is they’re making you better trader if you choose to learn from them.