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Day Trading Stats

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June 12, 2023

What is Day Trading?

Day trading is a trading style that involves buying and selling a tradeable asset within the time span of a single trading day. In short, this means that all positions opened within one trading day are also closed out that same day. Day trading can take place in any financial or commodity market, although day traders tend to prefer highly liquid markets like the forex and stock markets. Day traders also tend to be well funded and to trade on margin whenever possible, as using leverage allows day traders to make money from relatively small intraday market movements.

The most successful day traders study the market they plan to trade in thoroughly, as well as develop a trading plan prior to trading with any significant amount of money. Day traders often use technical analysis to inform their trading activities while also providing trade signals. However, as you will see, day trading is an extremely difficult market to profit from.

CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. Between 51% and 89% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.

Day Trader Performance

  1. Over a 12-month period, approximately 5% of day traders are profitable.
  2. The ‘vast majority’ of day traders are unprofitable.
  3. Many unprofitable traders continue to trade, despite an ‘extensive experience’ of losses.

Day Trader Persistence

  1. Roughly 80 percent of day traders stop trading within two years after starting.
  2. Within a studied group of day traders, almost 40 percent only day trade for one month.
  3. After three years, just 13 percent of them continued to day trade.
  4. After five years, a mere seven percent of the day traders remained active.
  5. Traders who have as much as a ten-year track record of losses still continue to day trade.

Day Trader Risk Taking

  1. Investors who have a substantial difference between their current economic state and their desired economic state tend to hold riskier stocks in their investment portfolios.
  2. As traders, gamblers tend to underperform those who are not gamblers inside each income range group.
  3. The prevalence of trading dropped by roughly 25% in Taiwan when a lottery became available for playing in April of 2002.
  4. Trading among individuals falls during times when an especially large lottery jackpot is available.

Common Day Trader Behaviour Patterns

  1. Even if day traders get a negative feedback event regarding their trading prowess, they continue to trade.
  2. Traders who operate profitably tend to raise their trading activity more than those who do not operate profitably.
  3. Investors often tend to hold on to their losing investments while selling their winning investments.
  4. If an investor has sold a stock for a profit, then they are more likely to repurchase that stock again than a stock they previously took a loss on.
  5. Traders tend to fail to learn from their mistakes when trading.

Best Markets to Day Trade

The forex market is the most liquid market in the world, which makes it very suitable for day traders, with many available sellers and buyers with relatively low transaction costs. As our article on forex trading stats and trends shows, in terms of transaction volume, the forex market is twelve times larger than the futures market and 27 times larger than the equities or stock market.

(Caption) Daily transaction volumes in U.S. dollars in the forex, futures and equities markets. Source: BrokerNotes.

Trends in Day Trading Compared to Other Trading Styles

When it comes to studying trading trends, the fast-moving nature of the market can make anticipating changes in the market difficult. However, one method of analysing general market sentiment can be studying the number of people who have searched for a particular trading term online.

For example, as Google reveals, for the year prior to July 2019 there were far more searches performed worldwide for day trading than for other popular trading styles, including scalping, news trading or trend trading. In comparison to day trading, scalping and news trading were roughly comparable in interest, while trend trading consistently remained the trading style with the lowest search engine popularity of those compared.

(Caption)Worldwide web search interest for 12 months prior to July 13, 2019, relative to the highest point on the chart. Source: Google Trends

In contrast, the data from the United Kingdom shows that day trading and news trading fluctuate in having the top search engine popularity. Scalping is less popular, while trend trading is the least commonly searched for a trading style of those compared.


  6. check out our guide: Forex Trading Industry Statistics.

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At, our data-driven online broker reviews are based on our extensive testing of brokers, platforms, products, technologies, and third-party trading tools. Our product testing extends to the quality and availability of educational content, market research resources, and the accessibility and capabilities of mobile platforms and trading apps. We also dive into each broker’s trading costs, such as VIP rebates, inactivity fees, custody fees, bid/ask spreads, and other fee-based data points.

Steven Hatzakis, an industry veteran with decades of experience in the forex market, leads the BrokerNotes research team. All BrokerNotes content is researched, fact-checked, and edited by the research team.

All websites and web-based platforms are tested using the latest version of the Google Chrome browser. Our Desktop PCs run Windows 11, and we use MacBook Pro laptops running the latest version of macOS to test trading on the go. We test mobile apps and products using iPhones running iOS 17 and Samsung devices running Android OS 14.

Note: The online brokers on our site provide the ability to trade forex in one or more ways, such as non-deliverable spot forex (i.e., rolling spot contracts), contracts for difference (CFD), or other derivatives such as futures. The availability of specific markets or features will depend on your country of residence and the broker's applicable brand or entity that services your account(s).

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We use proprietary AI technology to assist in some aspects of our content production. However, our scores, ratings, and rankings of online brokers are based on our in-depth product testing and thousands of hand-collected data points. Learn more about our AI Policy and How We Test.

Forex Risk Disclaimer

There is a very high degree of risk involved in trading securities. With respect to margin-based foreign exchange trading, off-exchange derivatives, and cryptocurrencies, there is considerable exposure to risk, including but not limited to, leverage, creditworthiness, limited regulatory protection and market volatility that may substantially affect the price, or liquidity of a currency or related instrument. It should not be assumed that the methods, techniques, or indicators presented in these products will be profitable, or that they will not result in losses. Learn more about foreign exchange risk.

About the Editorial Team provides unbiased forex broker reviews and ratings to help traders and investors find the best broker for their needs. All content is researched, fact-checked, and edited by our research team and all ratings and rankings are based on the team’s in-depth product testing.