Honorary Member Q&A: Clint


Clint

1. How long have you been trading and how did you get into forex trading?

Years ago (in a previous life), when I worked for a large engineering company, a co-worker introduced me to commodity futures trading. I was hooked from the start. We became best friends, and traded together. Initially, we traded a variety of ag futures. I subsequently branched out into financial futures, and then began to specialize in silver futures on the Comex exchange.

Later I became interested in stock index options, and began trading OEX options almost exclusively.

In 2005, I looked into the forex market for the first time, and was immediately intrigued. Initially, I was all over the lot, trading ten or twelve different pairs, and jumping from one trading style to another, and from one trading strategy to another.

Eventually, I narrowed my trading to just one pair: first it was the GBP/USD, then the GBP/JPY, then the EUR/USD, and finally back to the GBP/USD. For the past year, I’ve traded only the GBP/USD, mostly very short day-trades (or very long scalps, depending on how you want to look at it), during the wee hours of the morning, here on the U.S. east coast.

2. What’s your most memorable trading experience?

In July 2005, when I had been trading forex for only a couple of months, I happened to be watching the GBP/USD when the floor seemed to fall out from under it. I had no idea what was driving the move, but I jumped on it, shorting it again and again as it fell, eventually pyramiding a rather large position.

It was only after I had covered all my shorts at an average profit somewhere north of 80 pips, that I learned about the terrorist bombings that had just occurred in London. Initially, I felt uneasy about profiting from someone else’s disaster. But, after a lot of thought and soul-searching, I realized that, as a speculator, I was simply participating in the price-discovery mechanism of the market — which is precisely the purpose of markets.

3. Was there ever a time when you suffered a huge drawdown and thought of giving up? How did you get through that phase?

Yes. I won’t recount all the gory details, but I will say that for a long while I was mad that “the market took my money”. So, I stopped trading live, and traded only on demo, until I got my head straight.

4. What’s the most challenging part of trading for you?

The most challenging part of trading for me is setting aside the idea of “being right”. It’s in my nature to want to be right — in my analysis of trade set-ups, in my trade management, etc. But, “being right”, like everything else in this market, is a matter of probabilities: you’re “right” only as often as your win-ratio says you are.

The problem with thinking that you’re right is that it easily leads to trading too big. Then when the market rudely shows you that you’re wrong, you can end up taking unacceptably large losses.

5. When would you say a trader is “successful”?

A trader is successful when he or she can keep doing the same thing over and over again, getting the same results, and those results are good. That’s a long-winded way of saying that consistent profitability is the measure of success.

6. Do you think anyone can become a successful trader? Why or why not?

No. Some people are just not temperamentally suited to be successful traders.

Anyone can learn the facts about this market, and anyone can learn the mechanics of trading. But, I think that some people lack the psychological make-up necessary to take decisive action in a market environment where outcomes are uncertain, and where everything is determined by probabilities. Those people who tend to be “control freaks” seem to struggle terribly with the uncertainties associated with trading.

7. How does your personality match your trading style?

I’m a night-owl, so it suits me to trade the Frankfurt opening at 2am my time, and the London opening at 3am my time.

And, I like to actively monitor and manage my trades, so it suits me to hold positions for up to 4 hours. Beyond 4 hours, I start to lose my focus.

Also, I don’t handle true scalping very well (to me, it’s sort of like forex whac-a-mole); so, I don’t intentionally take trades that are going to last only a few minutes.

8. If you could give just one piece of advice to newbie traders, what would it be?

I would urge newbies to learn the power of COMPOUNDING modest, but consistent, daily profits — and, then, letting those profits grow exponentially to build wealth.

There are three elements here:
modest profits — don’t take huge risks swinging for the fences;

consistent profits — this means accurately following a trading method which has a high win-ratio; and

compound profits — let your profits accumulate in your account; and, as your account grows, increase the size of your trades in proportion to the size of your account.
If you can consistently AVERAGE a net profit of just 20 pips each day, you can earn an average 1% increase in the value of your account each day, while trading with no more than 5:1 actual leverage, and limiting your risk to less than 2% on each trade.

A steady 1% increase per day
= a little more than 5% per week (compounded over 5 trading days per week)

= a little more than 24% per month (22 trading days per month)

= almost 1,000% per year (240 trading days per year, allowing for vacations and holidays).
Where else can you legally make 1,000% per year on your initial capital, without taking extraordinary risks?

9. Describe your typical day as a forex trader.

I start about midnight (New York time) studying current price action, and updating charts (I use 9 different GBP/USD charts, displaying various things that I watch).

Between 1:30am and 3:30am, I look for a single high-probability trade. If I find what I’m looking for, I will babysit my trade until it hits my profit target, or I close it manually.

I try to exit the market before dawn, so that I can get a few hours of sleep. If I can get to bed by 6am, I’ll sleep til noon.

Afternoons and evenings are for things other than trading.

10. Who’s your favorite FX-Men?

I have great respect for Phil838, not only for his trading skill, but for his decency as a person. In a business fueled by testosterone, where some of us tend to be impatient and combative, Phil is always polite and considerate. He’s a true gentleman.

We don’t hear much from Phil these days, as he’s gone back to school for another graduate degree; but, I know that he keeps an eye on this forum. Phil is, in every sense, a gentleman and a scholar.


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Well I really enjoyed this insight into the mind of Clint. I find I really look forward to your posts and I think your reasoning is very sound especially when talking about compounding profits.

Thanks for the kind words, Johnny.

Speaking of compounding profits, I have always liked this quote from Albert Einstein:

“The most powerful force in the universe is compound interest.”

You can imagine how disappointed I was to learn recently that [B]Einstein never said that.[/B] People who have researched it, say that the quote is false — an urban legend, some call it.

Which reminds me of a Yogi Berra quote: “I never said most of the things I said.”

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Which reminds [I]me[/I] of a Newt Gingrich quote: “Any ad which quotes what I said on Sunday is a falsehood, and because—I have said publically that those words were inaccurate and unfortunate”

Thanks for all the good posts Clint!

mark twain i believe said that or at least that is who i’ve always attributed it to… but then again who knows

Nice post. I really enjoyed reading your post. I have noted down the compounding profits part as my target…1000% per year…haha :slight_smile: I will work hard for that…Thanks for your post and it motivates me…:slight_smile:

Excellent article.
Everything boils down to two things . Two C-s
Compounding
Consistency
A real hard part is a " trading method which has a high win-ratio " .That is the next to impossible part , to develop it.
Good trading
Dan

Nice insight with the compound interest thingy and the a lil over more than 24% increase monthly…I still got a lot to learn and do to get there.Nice interview all the same

Great to get a update on some friends from a few years back. Also glad to hear that Phil is still doing well, was just checking on his system from 09 and it seems to get a revival.
Yet, in the meantime I know it is not a system or holy grail that makes you money, it is you, experience, discipline that makes you the money. There is no short-cut to it for my opinion. :21:
You just have to be there, do it every day observe and adjust. Simple as that.
Of course it was fun using Phil’s system or Trevpicks0001 Win-Ratio system. Again, bottom line it was the learning curve that was needed.
See you around, from time to time. Oskar :21:

God bless you and your family!!! You have assisted my trading since I was a newborn trader. I am on my month old live account and I am profitable. Hope I am not just lucky. Every trade I implement everything I learned from the school and you. I owe yo my success.

You are da Best Man:35:

Clint seems like a good guy, always plenty to say, strong opinons, conservative, likes to trade the same pair as me during the same hours as me on the east coast (which is wierd) and not mention his posts have been a HUGE help to me.

kudos.

Clint hi!
I read with interest your interview. I understand that you’re a classic Forex scalper. Please tell me what the dealer (the marketplace, dealing center) you prefer to trade. Thank you.

Hi Clint,

I like your writings and expertise. I am quite new to Forex and I do not get something. Thought I ask you. I read the article from Piponomics about unemployment rate in Australia (Trading Guide: Australia’s Jobs Report | Forex Blog: Piponomics).

There are two figures in this article. On the first figure the unemployment rate is better then expected and the AUD/USD pair started to fall. In the second pair the unemployment rate is actually worse then it was thought and the rate of the AUD/USD still dropped dramatically. Can you please explain me how can it be that the unemployment rate had two different months two different reporting but the outcome was still the same?

The other question would be to this topic if you could say something about how long do the effects of an unemployment rate last? Are the rates usually back after a couple of days to their original value? Or does it take longer?

Not to this topic but if I am asking already then why not a third question:-) I read everywhere how important the different reports are on GDP, unemployment, inflation etc. However I do never see a source where I can get these kind of informations the most up-to-date. Do you have a favorite site where you gain your information? Or is there a speical radio that makes these broadcasts? I get the news way too slowly, when there are articles about the topic and then basically the time when I can react, everything is already over.

Thanks Clint for your great answer in advance,

ForExchange

Thanks.

You’re asking the wrong person. I am strictly a technical trader, and you are asking questions about fundamental trading.

Actually, to be more accurate, [I]all[/I] traders combine some mix of technical and fundamental analysis in their trading decisions. But, a [I]technical trader[/I] relies predominantly on technicals, and only watches fundamentals out of the corner of his eye. Let’s say that, for him, the mix is 90% technical, and 10% fundamental.

A [I]fundamental trader[/I], on the other hand, might use 90% fundamentals, and 10% technicals.

You should ask your fundamental questions on the [I]Fundamental-ville[/I] forum. The traders who hang out there know much more about that stuff than I do.

There are several forex calendars on the internet which list all of the reports you referred to. Babypips has a good one. My personal preference is the Forex Factory calendar. And there are others.

These calendars show you — days or even weeks in advance — every important [I]pre-scheduled[/I] economic report. Obviously, [I]un-scheduled[/I] news can happen at any time, without warning, and that’s a different matter altogether. But, for the pre-scheduled items, the calendars I mentioned give you not only the date and time of the report release, but also the numbers which market analysts are expecting, and the most recent previous numbers. Then, when the current numbers are released, the calendars are updated (always within minutes, and sometimes within seconds), so that you then have last month’s numbers, the numbers expected prior to release this month, and the actual numbers just released.

The only way to get faster information on these data releases is to subscribe (at considerable cost) to a news service like Bloomberg. For a newbie like yourself, just learning this business, that sort of expense would be a waste of money.

In fact, I think you should avoid spending money on [I]any[/I] sort of forex data feeds, software, or educational courses or materials. There is more of that stuff than you could ever digest, available for free on the internet.

In addition to the [I]Piponomics[/I] blog and the [I]Fundamental-ville[/I] forum here on Babypips, you might check out [I]DailyFX[/I], if you’re looking for commentary and analysis on forex fundamentals (and technicals). I keep an eye on that site to be alerted to things that might blindside my trades.

Lastly, there’s a wealth of information already archived on this forum, in the form of 7 or 8 years-worth of threads on every conceivable topic. Learn how to use the [I]Search[/I] feature on this forum. You can type individual key-words or phrases into the [I]Search[/I] box at the top of this page, click the [I]magnifying glass[/I] icon, and pull up tons of useful information. Basically, it works like any internet search engine (Bing, Google, etc.), except that it searches only this forum. The key to success is cleverly picking the key-words for your search. You should train yourself to become a search expert — it will aid your forex education, and save you from asking questions that have been asked and answered on this forum a dozen times already.

Welcome to the world of forex trading. And welcome to this forum.

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Thanks Clint!

The answer was very useful and I wish you start soon a blog as well! It would be the perfect time!

Have a nice weekend

Amen on the compounding! My goal is 5% per month so my sights are a bit lower than most :wink:

You’re a wealth of information and an asset to the forum.

You are right Mr. John. Thank you so much

This is my first interview to read as a newcomer forex student. It’s really informative and well written!
I would like to thank both Clint and Ananais for this thread.

I can’t wait to dive further into the world of forex, I’ve already started on the preschool phase!

Kind Regards,

Hello! PipGypsy back for a School Re-do, its been a while but Im gonna make it this time! Very glad be here!