The USA share market is vast with more than 6,000 companies providing retail traders access to major companies and brands from all over the globe. The USA stock markets make up some of the biggest global markets in terms of both turnover as well as value; the market capitalisation for US listed companies in 2012 was a stunning $18.7 trillion compared to £3.3 trillion for UK listed ones. Given this, it is natural that you may be interested in trading on the USA stock market. After all, the US markets have the giant technology companies, such as Apple, Facebook, Intel, Google, Microsoft, and eBay, while the domestic markets are more inclined towards the stable types of companies, such as resources. But directly trading in the USA market can be a challenge. That's where spread betting can allow you access without leaving your domicile.
Spread betting allows you to bet as many £ per point as you want on a stock or on the market indices. It's easy to get started with a small amount of money, and you don't have to pay a commission for the trade, as the spread bet broker earns his profit from the spread between the buy and ask prices he gives you. What's even better is that profits from betting in the UK and many other countries are tax-free, and don't attract capital gains tax. As you never own any shares, you also do not have to pay any stamp duty.
The New York Stock Exchange opens at 2.30 pm UK time and is the world's largest and most liquid stock exchange having some 2,300 companies worth over $15.5 trillion. Companies traded on it include such familiar names as Walt Disney, McDonalds and Coca-Cola as well as the likes of Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan and Intel. Online spread betting is very similar to online share investing, and the trading platform is easy to understand. For the indices and for major stocks you will be quoted a buy and a sell price, and you simply have to say which you want with an amount per point. The spread between the prices, which is the broker's cut, simply means that the price needs to move in your direction a little before you start making a profit.
It's ironic to think that you are able to profit from the US stock markets tax free by gambling with spread betting when the US does not permit spread betting, and taxes any income from gambling winnings, whether in the markets or at Las Vegas.
If you're not familiar with the individual US stocks, you can bet long or short on the market indices. The most well-known may be the Dow Jones Index, more correctly known as the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) as there are many other indices compiled the Dow Jones company. Almost as well known is the NASDAQ, which is a more technically inclined stock market.
If you do decide to spread bet on the US markets, you should watch carefully for the spread quoted, as this can become quite large. Usually you will find that this is because you are looking at the prices when the US markets are closed, or in the first half hour of trading when it can be volatile. This means the brokers increase the spread to protect themselves from unexpected price moves. As daytime in the States corresponds roughly to the evening in the UK, if you want to spread bet the US markets this is something you can do successfully in the evening after work, and you won't suffer from the defensive spreads.
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