1. How long have you been trading? What got you into it?
I’ve been at it about two years now or maybe a little more. I’d have to look back at my first post to find out the exact date. I’ve had the live account almost that long. A certain institutional trader I know said that it takes two years to get good at it and another three to make your million, so I’m about where I should be at this point.
2. What was it like when you first started trading?
I actually tried trading futures many years ago. That didn’t work out. Years later I heard about forex in some spam mail about fapturbo. Well, I didn’t buy it, I downloaded it for free.
After it lost half my 50k demo account I decide to learn to trade manually, although I’m a programmer by profession, so EAs still have some appeal for me. I didn’t spend much time on demo after I found a broker that let you start with a very small amount. I lost a pretty big chunk of that first account, but never did bust it all the way down to zero, and I’ve have slowly built it back up since then. The early trades were confusing and frustrating. How was it that price always turned the wrong way as soon as I entered a trade? I was really good at picking tops and bottoms… only in the wrong direction! It only goes up or down so you should at least get it right half the time, but no!
Well, that was in the beginning and I’ve gotten better since then, but there’s still a long way to go before I stop calling myself a noobie. It’s been a long slow climb. Sort of like climbing a mountain – long slow and arduous, but the top is in sight! Now I’m liking it when my iPhone app pops up a message almost every morning saying the “Take Profit” has been executed. Oops! There’s one now! +30 pips on EU, LOL
3. Are you a fundamental trader or a technical trader? Why?
Almost exclusively technical. As for fundamentals, well… the fundamental things apply as time goes by… but Fundies, I think, manifest primarily on longer time frames over weeks and months, and I rarely have a trade last longer than a few days.
Exceptions may be big news events like NFP, which makes a big splash when it happens, and contrary to popular opinion, can be traded if you know what you’re doing. There are way too many things besides fundamentals that move price on weekly, daily and shorter time frames, so I trade price action only.
I usually equate technical trading with indicators, which I don’t use very much. Mostly I scalp the daily time frame and sometimes weekly, but lately have dropped down to shorter time frames for flag formations and simple momentum plays. Also, I’ve been testing out a statistical based trading method, but that’s an entirely different pair of dimes and not something that conventional wisdom or common sense would approve of. But then conventional wisdom is what puts you in the 95% club and common sense is what tells you the world is flat – you see where that’s gets you.
4. What are the top 5 traits a forex trader should NOT have?
I’m not used to thinking in negative terms but here goes:
Should not be impatient, because as simple as trading is, it can take a long time to get good at it.
Not being serious. If you want to make it, then you have to take it seriously.
Trying to hit a home run. This is not a lottery and you won’t make mega bucks overnight, so stay away from high leverage and just run the bases.
Over trading. Wait for good setup – that goes along with the patience part.
Too much trust in indicators. Indicators tell you what price did in the past, none of them tell you what it’s going to do in the future. I only use indicators to gauge where price is now compared to where it was and to look for divergence.
Spending too much time on demo. The quicker you can trade with real money, the sooner you will experience and get used to the emotional impact of winning and losing.
Starting with too big an account. It’s better to learn small than to lose big! That’s more than five, isn’t it?
I could probably keep going, but that’s enough. You didn’t ask what traits a trader should have. It helps to be smart, but not too smart – I tend to over think and over analyze things. You should be stubborn and obsessed and absolutely refuse to ever give up… ever!
5. How do you envision forex trading to be 3 years from now?
Since 2012 is the end of the world, it’s a moot point anyway, but… forex in general? Who knows what the NFA or whatever regulatory agency wanting to hold my hand crossing the street and protect me from myself will do. Pet peeve time – just today I missed out on making some pips because of that blasted FIFO rule!
In 3 years I will either be in the same situation I’m in now, worse off, or better off. If I don’t do anything then the odds are I will be worse off and that is the reason that I trade. Because if I keep trading I will gradually get better, and odds are I will be better off than I am now. But anyway, you can’t predict the future… well you can, but odds are your prediction will be wrong.
The only thing you can know for certain is that you can’t know anything for certain.
6. If you could give a 5-step plan for newbie traders, what would that include?
Absolutely new with no clue whatsoever?
You have to learn the basics first and I would say the BabyPips.com school is a good starting point for that.
Demo just long enough to know what the heck you’re doing and move to live, because there’s nothing like losing real money to make you take this seriously.
Pick a trading method and stick with it long enough to find out if it works for you, and don’t stop using it just because you have a loss or three – in other words, don’t start system hopping.
Learn good money management, meaning keep your risk per trade at a level that when (not if) you lose, you will survive to trade another day. That’s why I still haven’t blown my first account.
Rinse, wash and repeat.
Ok, that’s more than five, but I like to make up the rules as I go along.
7. Aside from forex trading, what else do you like doing?
I like doing creative artistic things. I try to play music on guitar, but I’m not real good at it. I’ve done paintings, sculpture, built rifles and powder horns, built violins (refinishing one right now and even making my own varnish for it), scrimshaw, flint knapping. I’ve flown airplanes and dabbled in physics, cosmology (that’s cosmology NOT cosmetology grrr), astronomy and all sorts of other things. There are just too many hobbies. I’ll never get bored.
8. What do you value most in people?
Television news reporters are stupid. Sorry, sometimes I jump to the end of a thought and skip all the middle bits, so let me start over.
I value most those people who are phony, untrustworthy, deceitful, unreliable… just kidding… well what did you expect me to say? I don’t like questions like this, because I know all the right answers and all the wrong answers and so do all of you who read this. I could list all the socially acceptable personality characteristics that everyone likes and expects, but then everyone already knows what those are anyway, so what’s the point.
This kind of question kind of reminds me of our local TV station. When there is some disaster, like a tornado, the reporter goes up to the homeowner who has just lost everything and asks, “How do you feel?” Well, like I said in the beginning……
9. What’s the one thing that not a lot of people know about you but you wish more people knew?
You mean like the voices in my head that tell me to do things? LOL, just kidding. Everyone who knows me already knows pretty much all there is to know, so no secrets to conceal. Ok, here’s one – I like to sit outside in thunderstorms and watch the lightning.
10. If someone gave you a million dollars today, what would you do with it?
That’s not enough to live on for the rest of my life, so I couldn’t retire, as much as I’d like to! So I would pay off the bills, first of all, and help out some family members too. I’d have to keep working, but I would take a nice vacation, maybe some traveling, maybe go to India and ride on an elephant and see tigers in the wild. Then I would come back home and go back to work and trade forex until I have enough millions to retire and “do whatever I want to do… all the time!”
He gave us a link where we can see pictures of what he’s done. Check it out here! Beautiful!