As a day trader, I usually start my day at 9am.
I have 2 computer screens, one will be focused on charts, while the other will be used for checking the news and browsing the net.
9am: i will start to look at the news which happened while i was asleep. I will also look at the economic calender for today and tomorrow, paying special attention to events with medium to high importance. I do not trade the news but i still want to be cautious for news coming my way when i have open positions. After getting a picture of what news have been released and what upcoming news events there are, I will start to look at my charts for trading opportunities. For charts, i look at around 20 currency pairs, ranging from majors, minors to exotic pairs. If there is a trading opportunity and the spreads are reasonable, i may take the trade. At this hour of the day, in the Asian session of the market, market is still thin, there are usually few trading opportunities.
11am: i will go for brunch nearby. When i am not in front of my computer, i will still look at my positions using my mobile. I will also run some errands during this time.
1pm: I will be back in front of my screen, screening through 20 over currency pairs. The European session will be opening soon, there will be more liquidity in the market, there is more price action. Once i am on my trade, I will usually 'set and forget' and go about with my usual routine.
3pm: I will start to read, usually investment and forex related titles. I will also check out twitter news feed to look at what other traders are up to, twitter is also one of the best tools to keep up with market updates.
5pm: I will check on my trades (if any) and look for trading opportunities. Once that is done, i will hit the gym or go for a swim.
7pm: I will get a quick dinner and head back to my computer. Market is usually volatile with European session ongoing and US session about to open in a few hours.
12am: I will usually end my day at midnight. If i have a few positions, i will lighten my positions to rollover.
To answer this question, you need to know how much you are aiming for in terms of average monthly income and what is your average monthly return from forex trading. Assuming that you are aiming for 3000usd and your average return on a monthly basis is 5%, you will need to have a capital of $60,000 to work with.
For Newbies, you need a realistic target because the truth is trading is very difficult and it may take up to years before you can start to see results. In fact, please do not expect to rely on trading as a form of income for the first 6 months to a year. In addition, you need to put aside risk capital for forex trading because you will almost certainly (90%) lose your first trading account. Ask around your friends and see if it is true.
In the long run, there is no way you can win 100% of the time in forex trading. Yes, you could probably win 5 out of 5 total trades. But if you trade a total of more than 1000 trades so far, it is impossible to achieve 100% success rate.
Depending on what kind of trader you are, you may have to face your computer screen for long hours to find trading opportunity. This is especially true if you are a Forex Scalper. Scalpers usually hold their trades for less than an hour, sometimes with huge positions to catch small number of pips. Often, they have no stop loss and take profit levels and trades are closed manually. With this approach of trading, you really need to stay sharp so you know how to react when market becomes volatile.
The market does not trend all the time. There is no point staring at the computer for trades when market is ranging. When you stare at the computer screen for too long, your itchy fingers will start to do things which you are not supposed to while your weary eyes will start to see things when they should not. What i mean is you will start to identify sub-optimal trades, knowing that the trades do not seem to work out, but you do not have trades to play with, hence you take the trades because you want to be in the market and do not want to miss out any opportunity. I guess many people understand what i mean. Eventually, they realised that the trades went against their favor and they wished the trades were not taken.
Back when i first started trading, i remember a mentor told me that you should only trade what you see but not what you think. Over the years, I have heard this phrase countless times but i always feel that it is so important that i will need to write it down and paste it in front of my computer to remind me.