But it needn't be the exclusive domain of professional traders.
Before you start though, you should consider how stable your financial position is.The returns are potentially large, but for every winner there has to be a loser so you've got to figure out how you would cope with possible losses.
You can limit your risks, especially if you choose online share dealing services, in a number of ways.
These limit orders are free to set up with many brokers and some run for up to 90-days or you can instigate a stop loss order which triggers an automatic sale if the share price drops below a specified level and your shares are then sold at the next available price.Share dealing could be for you if you are free of debt (aside from a mortgage), you have life insurance to protect any defendants, you are in your employer's pension scheme or have your own pension plan and are covered by an income protection policy should you suffer from a long-term illness.
Ideally, you should also have between three and six months' savings available to cover in the event of redundancy or job loss.Even if you do have all these in place, you still need to be aware that share dealing on your own is riskier than buying shares through unit trusts and investment trusts because these mechanisms "pool" your savings with other savers in many companies, spreading the reward but equally spreading the risk.
Share dealing for yourself means you're the one making the decisions and you must have the confidence and judgment to invest your own money.If you feel confident about making the decisions, then look at execution-only dealing, where a broker carries out your instructions without giving advice.