Whether sifting through charts or running a stock screener (also available in Thinkorswim via the Scan tab), inevitably the alert function will come in handy.
One of the easiest ways to set an alert is right from the chart you are looking at. Right-clicking anywhere on the chart will bring up a menu. Hover over "Alert" and select "LAST."
Figure 2 - Set-up Alert
Selecting "LAST" means you are setting up an alert to notify you when the most recently printed price hits the price you specify. This will bring up another window - the Alert window. This window can also be manually accessed by going to the MarketWatch tab and then selecting Alerts. If you came from a chart, the stock symbol should already be inputted, if it isn't, then you can manually pull up a quote by entering the symbol in the upper left section of the window.
In the Alerts window near the bottom of the window, there is a section called "Alert Entry." This is where you input the alert and can customize options.
Figure 3 - Alert Entry
This alert is set for a "stock," Microsoft (Nasdaq:MSFT) and will be triggered when the last price is at or above $32.90. Based on the example shown in Figure 1, such an alert would notify the trader when the stock is approaching the 52-week high. The alert can be altered so that Trigger is "Above" or "At or Above," "Below" or "At or Below." The price can easily be changed by typing it in the box or scrolling with the arrows.
You will also want to set up how you are notified when an alert is triggered. This is done via the Alert Setup button in the upper right hand corner of the Alert Entry sections (see figure 3).
Figure 4 - Alert Set-up
In the alert setup, under Notify About, select "Alert is Triggered" and "TOS Announcement." Just to the right of that, under "Settings for Alerts," select "Sound on Trigger" (if you have the platform open) and "Send Email." In order to send an email, you will need to input your email address in the slots provided. Click "OK" when finished. Once the alert is set up, click "Create alert" in the lower right hand corner of the Alert Entry section and your alert is set.
The alert will show up in the Alert Book just below the Alert Entry section. If the alert needs to be adjusted simply right click on the alert and select Cancel/Replace Alert. This will allow you alter the order and re-enter it. Multiple alerts can be placed by going through the process outlined above.
Use Trade Alerts To Capture Big Moves With Thinkorswim - Conclusion
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