it really comes down to where one lives, what one wants, one's family composition and one's age.. as to if $5K per month will be enough.
Let's assume that one wants a place to live that one owns, not rent, $150K for a decent house to live in depending on the area ... of course, that could also be $300K to $1MM+ ..... that place will carry Real Estate Taxes, Insurance, Utilities, etc.. it might amount to $1500-$2000 per month.. let's assume you paid off the house.. it still carries $1K per month.. and those increase per year.
Let's assume auto as well, $20-$25K for a decent one... then there are carrying costs... $500 per month..
then add food, gas, clothing, and other misc things... $1K-$2K... depending on area's cost of living...
total expenses before medical, insurance, etc... $3K-$4.5K... and that does not take taxes, I assume $70K was net of taxes...
enough to live on, but that makes trading another job... IMO.. but as I said, the total amount needed depends on many factors... size of family, etc... location has a lot to do as well... i mean, where I live.. $150K wont cut it... yet, that same $150K has you living very comfortably in some areas of Florida... I say FL, only because I am familiar with that state.. nothing more... I am sure there are other places where cost of living is low and $70K could last a lot longer.
the second ... is rather easy... stress level... and the markets and regulations change...
day in an out, the stress will get to you... lead you to make mistakes, that one has to recover from... that will lead to more stress... remember, trading is for a living... no profit no income..
the point of trading to me is to generate funds, to then turn those funds and invest on something else that will work for you.. keep in mind that you have to work in order to make money when trading... so nothing changes from a 9-5 job, just the potential to make lots of $$$ compared to working for a company.
hence why maximizing ones bets when odds are in ones favor come into play.. and then taking that $$$ and turning around and investing on Residential or Commercial Real Estate, or even Variable Annuities, etc...
one never knows if something will happen tomorrow that will stop you from trading, hence, once should always trade as if there will be no additional chances.
the stress of having to trade every day can wear on ones health...
and then there are the markets, those change.. and the regulations on those markets change as well...
I mean, IMO, it was easier to trade back in the 90's.. heck, I traded equities then and I made and lost hundreds of thousands because I did not know how to keep my profits and control my risks... that was before HFT was really around and before 2001 when we were still trading on 8ths and 16ths... now it is harder to derive profit from trading equities when you can be a lot easily front run..
if someone can last for a long time trading, I mean 10-20 years plus.. and be consistently profitable... and that person only made enough to live on, that person just wasted their talent and opportunity... and has to continue trading to live off...
ideally, a trader... will maximize his bets when it is wise to do so... earn as much as he/she can... accumulate assets, and then diversify those assets by categories.. and generate a portion of his income from passive asset categories...
now with the points addressed, an illustration based on my plan...
I live in CT... to live without worries, I would need $200-$300K a year...
I want to move to FL... to live without worries, only need half that... $100K-$150K a year...
I assume I have a house I like and that is paid off, a car that I like, I vacation to where I want, and I dont necessarily waste money.. but I dont mind indulging myself and my family on something nice (but not wasteful)..
as I said, the yearly trading goal is really based on where one resides, expectations and needs... no single number can be applied to any individual.. if I believe I will have 20 years to trade, then the following items wont be accomplished if anything unexpected happens to me that stops me from trading... cant earn if you cant trade.. please note that this is my plan.. and things will change on it, as things have changed over the past 5 years that I have been working on it..
- I set aside 20%-50% of my profits; they go back to my cash account, depending on what I have to accomplish
- I have divided my assets into 4 categories (Trading, Financials, Real Estate, Cash)
- Trading is for Options and Futures.
- Financials means Insurance (Term/Whole), Annuities (Variable/Fixed) across multiple companies, and for all my family (wife and kids).. I am after multigenerational wealth... but hopefully my kinds and grandkinds wont be trust fund brats... that is my job to teach them value of money..
- I strive for a min of 5-6% on my cash (CD/Bond Ladders are great tools)
- I strive for a min of NOI of 10% on Real Estate (Unleveraged, more if leveraged; and I invest in condos and MF today, goal is residential and commercial buildings)
- I have the goal of generating $100K-$150K from my investments on a net basis (if I can no longer trade, then my investments and annuities take over)
- I have no limits for Futures and Options (I push for max, risk 1% per trade, 3% daily, I would like to reach $25K min per day, the sky the limit when the odds are in my favor, I know of guys that make $1MM-$5MM+ trading for prop desks... no reason why one cant do it as well.. if properly funded both financially and technologically)
- I keep on the accounts only what I need to trade based on the number of contracts and instruments I trade
- I invest only on my IRA accounts for Futures and Options (I am now gearing up to hold my RE on IRA as well)
- I trade outside of my IRA when I have to, but I try to avoid it given my tax bracket.
- If I need to borrow, I borrow from my life insurance policies, and the goal is to use them as my own bank and for my kids to use their policies as a bank as well. I pay interest to myself and I can accelerate the payments if needed.
if I knew the things I know now back when I was much younger and didnt have a family, I would be way ahead on some of the items within the plan.. but that is life... one is not born knowing a simple thing, one has to live to figure those things out....
I think the question is bad though with the word "encourage".
Given the failure rate it would be irresponsible to encourage someone to trade.
I wouldn't talk someone completely out of it but I certainly wouldn't be a cheerleader.
The answer is, and always will be, NO. IMO the question relates to myself and my sense of responsability. It's not a question of money, learning curve or adversity to the risk, it is about responsability. It is not by just beeing successful or experienced that entitles to encourage trading. Beeing a full time trader, I learned a lot about my inner side, trading is very intimate. Trading is aleatory whereas friendship is a much longer term concept. I decided to be a trader to reach some kind of freedom (which is a subjective and relative concept), when it comes to money I don't want to have doubts for having given a good or bad advice.
Just to paraphrase somebody, Did a say it's not my responsability ?
Giving friends advice on trading is a really bad idea, you can't win.
Right before the market correction a couple of years ago, I went to cash (just because you are paranoid does not mean you are wrong). Friends got mad that I didn't warn them to get out of the market also.
After the crash a friend called me and asked if I thought he should buy stock in Ford since it was @$2 a share. I told him that I thought they would make a comeback since they were the only car company that didn't need a bailout, BUT he had to realize that it was risky, he could lose ALL of his money if they went bankrupt. He didn't buy it. Now every time he looks at Ford stock he rants about why I talked him out of buying Ford @ $2.
I'm just a simple man trading a simple plan.
My daddy always said, "Every day above ground is a good day!"
The following 2 users say Thank You to ThatManFromTexas for this post:
Recommending some one to trade to me sounds like suggesting or advising someone to get married. Some of us like it and some of us hate it.
Doing both can be damaging to one bank account and you would never be right anyway.