It's possible to trade profitably on the Forex, the nearly $2 trillion worldwide currency exchange market. But the odds are against you, even more so if you don't prepare and plan your trades. According to a 2014 Bloomberg report, several analyses of retail Forex trading, including one by the National Futures Association (NFA), the industry's regulatory body, concluded that more than two out of three Forex traders lose money. This suggests that self-education and caution are recommended. Here are some approaches that may improve your odds of taking a profit. Prepare Before You Begin Trading Because the Forex market is highly leveraged -- as much as 50 to 1 -- it can have the same appeal as buying a lottery ticket: some small chance of making a killing. This, however, isn't trading; it's gambling, with the odds long against you. A better way of entering the Forex market is to carefully prepare. Beginning with a practice account is helpful and risk-free. While you're trading in your practice account, read the most frequently recommended Forex trading books, among them Currency Forecasting: A Guide to Fundamental and Technical Models of Exchange Rate Determination, by Michael R. Rosenberg is short, not too sweet and highly admired introduction to the Forex market. Forex Strategies: Best Forex Strategies for High Profits and Reduced Risk, by Matthew Maybury is an excellent introduction to Forex trading. The Little Book of Currency Trading: How to Make Big Profits in the World of Forex, by Kathy Lien is another concise introduction that has stood the test of time. All three are available on Amazon. Rosenberg's book, unfortunately, is pricey, but it's widely available in public libraries. "Trading in the Zone: Master the Market with Confidence, Discipline and a Winning Attitude," by Mark Douglas is another good book that's available on Amazon, and, again, somewhat pricey, although the Kindle edition is not. Use the information gained from your reading to plan your trades before plunging in. The more you change your plan, the more you end up in trouble and the less likely that elusive forex profit will end up in your pocket. Diversify and Limit Your Risks Two strategies that belong in every trader's arsenal are: Diversification: Traders who execute many small traders, particularly in different markets where the correlation between markets is low, have a better chance of making a profit. Putting all your money in one big trade is always a bad idea. Familiarize yourself with ways guaranteeing a profit on an already profitable order, such as a trailing stop, and of limiting losses using stop and limit orders. These strategies and more are covered in the recommended books. Novice traders often make the mistake of concentrating on how to win; it's even more important to understand how to limit your losses. Be Patient Forex traders, particularly beginners, are prone to getting nervous if a trade does not go their way immediately, or if the trade goes into a little profit they get itchy to pull the plug and walk away with a small profit that could have been a significant profit with little downside risk using appropriate risk reduction strategies. In "On Any Given Sunday," Al Pacino reminds us that "football is a game of inches." That's a winning attitude in the Forex market as well. Remember that you are going to win some trades and lose others. Take satisfaction in the accumulation of a few more wins than losses. Over time, that could make you rich!


These soft Strawberry Cheesecake Cupcakes have a creamy cheesecake center and fresh homemade strawberry frosting.  They are always a hit at any dinner or party we bring them to.

These soft Strawberry Cheesecake Cupcakes have a creamy cheesecake center and fresh homemade strawberry frosting. They are always a hit at any dinner or party we bring them to.
  • For the Cupcakes
  • 1 strawberry cake mix
  • 1 - 3.4 ounce instant strawberry pudding mix
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • For the Cheesecake Filling
  • 1 - 3.4 ounce package instant cheesecake pudding mix
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 1/4 cups Cool Whip, thawed
  • For the Strawberry Butter Cream
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon strawberry extract
  • 1 Tablespoon water
  • 3/4 cup diced strawberries
  • 5 cups powdered sugar
  • 24 whole strawberries
  • 48 graham cracker cookie sticks

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line muffin tins with 24 cupcake liners.
  2. Beat the cake mix, pudding mix, oil, milk, and eggs for 2 minutes. Spoon batter into the prepared muffin tins. Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until the tops spring back. Cool on a wire rack.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk the milk and pudding mix until creamy and thick. Beat the cream cheese until creamy. Add the pudding and beat again. Fold in the whipped topping.
  4. Use a cupcake corer or small knife to cut out the center of the cupcakes. Spoon the cheesecake filling into a piping bag with icing tip 12 and fill the centers. Refrigerate while you make the frosting.
  5. Beat the shortening and butter until creamy. Add the salt, vanilla, and strawberry extract and beat again. Slowly add half the powdered sugar until it is mixed in.
  6. Place the water and strawberries in a food processor or blender and puree. Pour into the frosting and beat until creamy. Add the rest of the powdered sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Use a large piping bag and icing tip 1M to swirl the frosting on the chilled cupcakes. Add the cookie sticks and a fresh berry to the top of each cupcake. Refrigerate cupcakes until time to serve. Makes 24 cupcakes.


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