The first thing you will need is a stock broker account that will give you access to trade the US stock markets such as NASDAQ and the New York Stock Exchange. As day traders, we want to focus on stocks that have the highest volatility and percentage range in one day, and these are usually found within the NASDAQ or NYSE.
Therefore I would highly suggest trading the US markets and not the Canadian markets. The difference can be 100% moves found almost daily in the US stock exchange, compared to just a few percent found in the Canadian stock market. Which would you rather be trading? Brokers such as Trade Zero, Centerpoint Securities are good options when looking for a brokerage account if living in Canada and looking for real-time chart data for US markets.
The second tool you’ll need is a stock scanner. Without a stock scanner, you won’t know which stocks to trade let alone which ones are even moving a significant amount. I personally use Trade Ideas. And the way I set it is to have all the morning gap ups show up, from highest to lowest. Going over the pre-market gappers will give me a pretty clear idea of which stock I’m going to trade on that given day. So having a stock scanner, a very important tool to have. Check out www.trade-ideas.com for more info.
Real-time Chart Data
The third tool you’ll need is chart data. Both Trade Zero and Centerpoint Securities offer real-time chart data. This is critical when day trading, because you’ll be trading based off the intraday chart, and not off the daily chart as you would if investing in a stock. Day trading and investing are two different things, so real-time chart data is a must when day trading. I personally use the 5 minute chart time frame for all of my entries and exits. Some other options for chart data are eSignal and DAS trader.