1.Tell us something about yourself. Where are you from? What are your hobbies?
It is funny you ask that, whenever I tell people my name (Ahmed) they always think I am either from the middle east or my parents are hippies, I am a pretty normal looking white person with no real accent so it throws them off. The truth of the matter is I am Syrian, but was born in Denver, and now I live in Florida.
I am quite fond of a few things, I love cooking, I am a classically trained French Chef. I am a huge Coffee Drinker, I love riding my bikes, I also have developed a strange like habit of doing card tricks, it started with shuffling them while I was watching trades happen, just as something for my hands to do and now it is a real problem, I am playing with card in bed before I go to sleep, while I cook, while I watch TV. Aside from those things I am really a lifelong learner, I love it.
2. How long have you been trading and how did you get into forex trading?
At this point I have been trading for a total of 6 years, it started when I asked a good friend about stock market stuff and he mentioned Forex to me. I had a Practice account 15 minutes later and was at it. I tend to get obsessive about things that I am learning or trying to get better at and luckily Forex was not an exception to that.
3. What’s your most memorable trading experience?
I used to get my hands on every resource I could over the last 6 years and one thing that helped me out like crazy was these interviews that Dukascopy would do with their traders of the month. One in particular was with a guy named Haissam Abiad who seemed to be some sort of wizard to me at the time. Anyway, I somehow found his contact info and sent him a few questions and his reply really impacted me.
(I was able to dig up the old email)
“There is no perfect system, most systems work for a while and then crash. Try to be a discretionary trader” -Haissam Abiad
Some sentences hit harder than other. That one hit me hard, it changed the way I trade.
As far as actual trades go though, my fondest memory was the first time I made what I thought was a lot of money at ($35 USD) I lost it the next day, but it was a revelation.
4. What were your first strategies in forex trading? How are they different from your strategies today?
Oh wow, here goes embarrassment.
My first system was probably something like a moving average set to 34 (I got stuck on that number for years) and I am fairly certain that I thought it was the holy grail but I will let you guys guess if that was was or wasn’t. After that I did literally everything. If you have an esoteric indicator I’ve had it too. Nothing worked.
So I decided to chase theory instead of indicators and that is how I trade now, on a theory of the market that I have developer that I am sure most people would tell you is fib-based, Murry math, folding rule or some other such thing but I would reckon it is actually closer to the way Livermore traded than anything else.
5. What were your biggest trading challenges and how did you deal with them?
Getting over getting your ass kicked daily. This is a common one I hear from a lot of traders too, you bring this up to any of them and they go “Yea, that’s exactly right.”. You go out into the market and you just get beat relentlessly and there seems to be no hope anywhere, you get apathetic rather quickly you know? And then for some reason you do it again and again and again. It takes a lot of work to do and you give up 8 times along the way and it is just awful.
But eventually you figure out some things and come out of it, but while you are in it it is the worst.
You deal with this in the same way a child deals with learning to ride a bike. They go out there and fall off the bike 10 times, they get a skinned knee and are all bruised up but for some reason they get back on the bike and keep going till they figure something out about how not to fall so much.
It is the same with trading, you keep going till you find out how not to fail.
6. Describe your current daily or weekly trading routine. What do you do before and after you trade?
People can get awful rigorous about this and I am just not that way, I do not demand I have to be up by 6 am and at my computer. I simply just check it throughout the day.
Once I do get to my machine, I load up a 4 hr chart if I am not sure of trend (Trends last wayyyyyyyy longer than most people estimate) and then I trade just off the 30 min chart. I use the Route 60 system in the trading section of the babypips for all my entries and exits.
7. Forex trading is not an easy business. What motivates you to continue trading when in a trading slump?
I think it helps that I did not get into trading to make money really. I got into it to learn and solve the problem. So slumps are not slumps to me, they are a chance to maybe learn something new or to take a look and see where I went wrong so I can implement a better policy on how to handle the situation I am in.
8. What’s that one important thing you’ve learned from spending a lot of time on the forums?
I came to the forums at a time when I was already profitable, I really came to show other’s more than anything else. That is not to say that I have not learned anything, you learn so much from showing other’s, they ask questions that make you have to explain a viewpoint on something in a way you have not even thought of yourself. It really strips you of these false ideas that are just there with no real reason for them to be.
9. Do you have any advice for forex traders and investors who are thinking of starting currency trading?
You learn by doing, so do a lot.
You should never take any info given to you that given with an authoritative “this is right” attitude.
Always evaluate data to see if it is actually correct.
Any system is better than no system. You can at least find out what does not work about it.
Moving averages ruin lives! (That one is my own person hate and should not be taken totally literally)
10. Non-trading question! What was the biggest non-trading-related risk that you’ve taken in your life?
I had to think on that one for a long time I even asked around. I realized I am not what you would call a risk taker. I tend to do those this which I am fairly certain will work or at least the failure is calculated. I sound like an old man, I promise I am not all that dull.