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Placing your first trade

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All trading involves risk. Losses can exceed deposits.


Community Question: what was your first trade? Let us know in the comments section below, and if you have any questions, please put them to the Community or IG Mods who are on hand to help. 


Placing your first trade will be different for everyone. Some people will take a long time making a trading plan, whilst others will place a small deal on a demo account or live account to see how it all works. There isn't a right or wrong way to do it, but the below maybe useful if you have never placed your first trade.


Formulate a trade idea

There are loads of different reasons you may have for placing a trade, but they are generally broken down into two themes. Technical Analysis and Fundamental Analysis. Some traders use both to decide which market to trade, whilst others stick exclusively to one. 



Understand your potential risk and reward

When you are placing a deal there is a chance that you will be wrong and the market will move against you. It's a good idea when going into each trade to know your potential risk, and to be aware of any exit levels either to bank a profit, or to cut a loss. There are a host of things you can rely on, but some of the most important points are below:


  • Know your risks and have an understanding of the wider market.
  • Think about setting stops or guaranteed stops on your trade.
  • Not every trade you place will be a winning trade. Learn to take losses when the market moves against you.
  • Avoid emotional trading.
  • Don't follow the heard and place a deal just because other traders are as well. [more + video]


Place a trade

If you've never traded before maybe place a deal on a demo account, or open a small position on a live account if you think you are ready. Monitor the trade for a bit and get an understanding of how it all works. Make sure you know how to close a deal, and if you have any questions, ask! [more + how to fill in a deal ticket]


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  • 1 month later...

Hi James,


I’m brand new and only placed my first trade this morning, more just to get an understanding of how things work than anything else.


How long does it take the trade to show up? When I look in my account the funds are reserved, but I can’t see details of the trade anywhere.


I think I may have made some sort of a mistake when buying the shares??


Could you please help?





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Hi  - I think you may have placed a working order rather than placed a trade. Effectively you have said "I would like to deal when the prices reaches this value (x)." 


You will need to go into the Orders tab and delete the working order. You can then pick the same share and use the 'at quote' function tab on the deal ticket to select your direct and size. Click get quote, decide on whether or not you want to take it, and then you should get filled. 


I hope this clarifies things. 

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Perfect, thank you James. My first ever trade is in play. As a total novice to share dealing, other than through a broker, I’d appreciate any helpful information you can provide.


I viewed the tutorials which I found helpful.


Thanks, Viv

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Hi  - not a problem at all - that;s what the Community is here for! So the major shares pane is specifically for an 'ease of use' navigation tool and we therefore don't have one which lists all shares on AIM. You can however search for an individual stock in the finder and start creating your own watch lists. You just click the drop down arrow > add to watchlist. I have posted an example below. 


2017-11-09 14_25_56-IG Dealing Platform _ Share dealing.png

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  • 1 month later...
Guest Dev2227

Hi James, I've been day trading a few months but am new to IG. I put 3k in my CFD account and tried to open a trade on the btcusd instrument, but even at the lowest fraction of a lot, it asked for more funds. Is the leverage set very high or something? Can you help? Cheers nick

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Dev2227 wrote:

Hi James, I've been day trading a few months but am new to IG. I put 3k in my CFD account and tried to open a trade on the btcusd instrument, but even at the lowest fraction of a lot, it asked for more funds. Is the leverage set very high or something? Can you help? Cheers nick

hi - so the margin on Bitcoin is 30% at the moment due to the underlying markets volatility, and given the market price of near $20,000 the margin required will be quite large. This higher margin requirement is basically reducing your leverage on the position. 

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Guest Dev2227

Hi James,


Thanks. With a 0.1 lot trade, wouldn't a 30% margin be about $600? Which I do have. Or am I missing something. I don't have years of teaching experience.





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  • 2 weeks later...
Guest Lukehanmond1

Why won’t IG allow me to long bitcoin, it keeps saying it’s unavailable all day, is that because IG won’t take the other side? I’m only trading the lowest lot possible

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Hi  - the margin requirements for bitcoin are as follows: 


2017-12-27 10_12_51-IG Trading Platform _ CFD.png


This means that for a 0.1 lot trade (make / lose $10 per point movement) the first 0.08 lots you're going to be margined at 30% with the remainder 0.02 at 50%. If bitcoin was at a price of $15,500 it would be 


size x contract size x price x margin requirement 

0.08 * 100 x 15500 x 30% = 37200

0.02 * 100 x 15500 x 50% = 15500


Total $52,700


You can however trade smaller values if you use the Minimum deal size on a Mini lot (which would have a margin requirement of $2325)

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  • 4 weeks later...
Guest RainKing



Just want to make sure I’m doing this right – I want to CLOSE an open position if the market drops to a certain level, OR increases to a certain level.


Example:  I have a position in Bitcoin that I opened at $10,258.  Current price is $12,720.  I’d like to close this position if the price drops to $12,000 OR if the price increases to $15,000.


So I click on the position to open a closing CFD ticket, then click “edit”, then input 12,000 in the Stop Level, and 15,000 in the Limit Level, then click “submit”.


Is that correct?



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Guest Paul333


Hi all, 


I'm not quite sure about my account value numbers vs my profit numbers.

I bought some shares at an account value of £16,077. I don't quite understand why my profit is £344 and yet my value only went up roughly by £176.

I'm new to all this so would love to be educated about why this could be?

Additional info - from the UK and bought USA shares. Commission should be at $15 and placed two purchases on the shares.

ig snipp dashboard.JPGig snipp.JPG

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I am new in the platform. there is no items of anything on show. what i can see is a default screen of balances. how do I view  and place a deal 

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  • 1 month later...
Guest igsnakeuk



This is a question regarding shares dealing on international shares.


When placing an order with a day limit, with closed markets, if the order expires and doesn't hit the price I set, do you charge the order fee anyway?

Or does it close the postion with no order and no fee?



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