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On Friday the 13th our heightened sense of awareness probably labels many things as unlucky when the odds are they are normal things but we notice them more today than ever on this ‘unlucky’ day. The same thing happens in trading when we get purely lucky and think we are great traders when we may have only picked the right stock this one time. There are even professional money managers that think they are geniuses because their careers coincided with great bull markets when going long and buying the dips was always they right thing to do. Bear markets and volatility have a way of showing which traders truly have skills and which were just lucky.

Luck is picking the right stock and riding it up for great profits, skill is knowing when to get out and lock in profits.

Luck is returning 20% in one month, skill is returning over 20% a year for 5 straight years.

Luck is making money in a bull market, skill is making money in a bear market.

Luck is making money when the market matches your perma bull or perma bear style, skill is making money in both bull and bear markets.

Luck is picking one monster stock, skill is picking three monster stocks back to back.

Luck is having one big bet pay off for huge profits, skill is surviving 200 straight trades and not blowing up your account.

Luck is surviving the market while not knowing what you are doing, skill is acquired after you have done your homework.

So, do you have skills as a trader or have you just been lucky? So far………