If you have some experience of trading plus a little capital you really have to look at trading the emini stock index futures markets. These are the markets I trade most now using a combination of day trading and swing trading strategies. I use fully automated emini trading systems which means that I am not glued to the screens all day.
The Emini S&P (ES) is a fully electronic market without a trading pit which means no market makers, locals, or floor brokers and all orders are matched by computer on a first come first served basis. This means that all traders have access to the same Level II market and for instance can see the 10 best bids and 10 best asks live in real time, and have access to same bid-ask spread. So all traders, both big and small, compete on an absolutely even playing field. The Emini S&P 500 (ES) is the world’s most actively traded stock index futures contract with millions of contracts traded each day with total contract value in excess $100 billion per day.
This high volume makes for a very liquid market with very tight spreads. Typically the spread is just a single tick ($12.50 per contract for the ES). Each ES contract trades at $50 per big point so with the index level of 2,000 each contract is worth $100,000. This means that the spread comes out at 0.0125% of the contract value – one of the lowest spreads for any instrument in the world.
The ES is popular with both institutional and individual traders who trade with a variety of different goals and objectives. This combination of high volume, a wide variety of participating traders with widely differing objectives and the natural diverse nature of the index constituents means that the Emini stock index contracts tend to trade very technically. This means that technical analyses works well on them and traders can trade them effectively without having to study multiple charts or necessarily studying the fundamentals in detail.
The transparency and depth of the market for ES makes it virtually impossible to manipulate.
Fills are guaranteed. If you are in a trade, for example, and the e-mini price goes through your offer, you get filled. No questions asked. This is a major problem for smaller Forex traders. You may be in a trade waiting to exit. You have an offer to sell. The Forex contract goes right by your price and does not fill you. Then you read in fine print on your Forex Brokers contract that they do not guarantee fills.The ES trades virtiually 24/6 and has good volume throughout that period. This allows you to enter, exit or have orders working to protect your positions almost 24 hours a day.
All ES trades are completed through the CME (Chicago Mercantile Exchange) and its member firms wihich maintains a well regulated and orderly market. This also means that customer funds have to be kept segregated. In the last 100 years the CME has only suffered one loss of customer funds due to failure of a clearing member