Monday, 22 September 2014

Million Dollar Traders

The second episode of "Traders: Millions by the Minute" aired last night on BBC 2. Another interesting show allowing us to look at a few ordinary, every-day financial traders from a variety of backgrounds, who trade from home with varying degrees of success - from a millionaire through to a guy who was trading with zero profit for SEVEN years! Do not watch this show expecting to get any valuable hints and tips about trading, it really isn't about that (though some important messages do shine through). I personally found it interesting because, as a professional trader working alone from home, I rarely get the opportunity to see other people in my position doing our job. For those of you who aspire to be traders, I think you'll find it quite motivational, seeing how other ordinary people go about their business.

As I've said before on this blog, there are two types of trader; the negative ones who will tell you all day long that it can't be done and you shouldn't bother (the failed traders) and the positive ones, who understand the odds are stacked against them but know that with hard work, anything is possible. Two quotes from the show stuck out for me. The first was from the self-made trading millionaire who said "Most traders who do give up, probably don't give it as much (hard work) as those that don't (give up)" - which is what I've maintained for a long time. The biggest difference between the successes and the failures, is that one wants it more than the other and will not give up until he gets it.

Another great quote was from the sister of the trader who had been trading for seven years with no profit to show for it (throwing away a decent career elsewhere to continue, although he was much happier as a trader). She said "Either you're absolutely crazy or it's admirable". And I think that can be applied to most traders. The millionaire trader had lost many thousands before he turned it around to earn six figures. If you've followed this blog from the early days, you'll know I nearly sent myself round the twist before I got anywhere. This tends to be how it works! It's admirable that successful traders have pushed on through tough times to earn their rewards but at the same time, for many of us, there have been moments where we've done crazy things or continued when the sane option would  have been to give up. It's a fine line.

Iveta Melzer

 I also came across another show I missed on the BBC from 2012 "Million Dollar Traders". I'm surprised I missed this first time around (or maybe I didn't and just can't remember because I was going through my cocaine and strippers phase?) but I certainly enjoyed watching this 3 part series on YouTube over the weekend. This programme is purely about training complete novices on how to trade the financial markets. It's an insight into what professional trading day to day is like and how it can affect people psychologically. It's interesting to see how different personalities react to the ups and downs and also shows that it doesn't matter what their background is, you never how someone will react to the pressure.

Someone recently wrote to me and said he had previously been trading financial markets and wanted to learn about sports trading. He said that he felt the sports markets would be more difficult because financial markets are moved by people and sports markets aren't.  I assume he meant that sports market prices are moved by the players (what happens in the match). This of course, is completely wrong. Both financials and sports markets are all about information and how people react emotionally to that information. In the financials, the latest news indirectly affects the markets but it is traders who directly move the prices. In sport, the players indirectly affect the market but it is traders who directly move the prices. In my time running the Trading Academy, I've come to realise more and more that many traders don't actually understand this and that makes it impossible for them to succeed. These programmes might help give a greater understanding of this.

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