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Anybody heard of topsteptrader (review)


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Anybody heard of topsteptrader (review)

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  #1 (permalink)
Naperville IL
 
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recently I got their email, they have combine program for 4 weeks($120), if you pass that, you will profit split with them, they don't require capital deposit, but I doubt if it is a scam!!! I appreciate if anybody here have experiences with them. thanks

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  #3 (permalink)
Market Wizard
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supermht View Post
recently I got their email, they have combine program for 4 weeks($120), if you pass that, you will profit split with them, they don't require capital deposit, but I doubt if it is a scam!!! I appreciate if anybody here have experiences with them. thanks

See press release: TopstepTrader Launches Unique Approach at Scouting for Traders - PR.com

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  #4 (permalink)
Naperville IL
 
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I am in their chat room now, seems a lot combine members there

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  #5 (permalink)
Naperville IL
 
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And I found a futures.io (formerly BMT) member who is combine member there. haha

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  #6 (permalink)
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supermht View Post
I am in their chat room now, seems a lot combine members there

Are they teaching strategies or are you expected to come up with one on your own? What trading platform are they using?

Thanks,
-C

“Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” - Sun Tzu
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  #7 (permalink)
Naperville IL
 
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just a chat room, you have to get your own strategy, their platform called T4, but it is a good practice at $120

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  #8 (permalink)
Honolulu, Hawaii
 
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supermht View Post
And I found a futures.io (formerly BMT) member who is combine member there. haha

How do you get into the chat room?

I figured it out. 34.95 per month:

https://www.topsteptrader.com:443/LiveSquawkRadioSignUp

This is interesting also:

https://www.topsteptrader.com:443/Recently-Hired-Traders

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  #9 (permalink)
Naperville IL
 
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apply their training program, you will get an access to chat room

I will apply their combine program for 120 dollars, see what we will get, I will post my experience here

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  #10 (permalink)
Honolulu, Hawaii
 
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supermht View Post
apply their training program, you will get an access to chat room

I will apply their combine program for 120 dollars, see what we will get, I will post my experience here

It strange, but I can't make it to their website again? It seems that their site has been 'hacked'?

Anyone getting in?

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  #11 (permalink)
Naperville IL
 
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funny, I am going to join combine program, but they run away. haha

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  #12 (permalink)
the coin hunter
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looks like it get hacked , twitter ok tho twitter.com/#!/topsteptrader

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  #13 (permalink)
Honolulu, Hawaii
 
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They must be extremely popular because it has been a few days...

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  #14 (permalink)
arcadia
 
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Hey gang,

So I've actually been on TopStep for months It is a serious program. It took me months to meet the goal and quite frankly the discipline and parameters they set are strict but attainable.

Sure you can Sim Trade for free on Ninja and what not but the amount of value you get for the $120 is pretty astounding.

First of all the Chatroom has become a very good resource. They bring in Live traders from the floor or sometimes call up traders and discuss market thoughts and dynamics. They have truly built a community as well. There are sometimes over 150 traders in the main "Lounge" and some of the traders share their charts and thoughts on market direction. It is by no means a "call room" though. It is an educational room. They try to get people engaged with the markets by implementing mini "games" such as "You make the call" or "Best/Worst" trade of the day. It's a great way to get newbies interested in the markets without all the artificial "mystique". Eddie the main broadcaster has been on the floor for over 20 years and provides neutral and entertaining insight. Along with Hoag another fellow Floor Trader/Broadcaster, they've been VERY instrumental in the opening hour deciphering Pit Noise and commentating on what the Pit traders and Banks are doing.

Secondly the software you get is very efficient. It is not pretty but it gets the job done. There are many gripes to be had for sure...the stop placement and the moving DOM is really very annoying but like I said it was built by engineers and not User Interface people. I've been on the CBOT floor and besides Trading Technologies X Trader almost all other traders use the T4 software. It is efficient and not too many bells and whistles but it handles the volatility we've been having fairly well. Also even on SIM they instill a strict stop management program. They WILL stop you out of your SIM position on the COMBINE to enforce discipline. You will NOT be taken Live if you violate their stops too many times. I can talk about this more later for those interested. I've blown out my fair share of accounts due to lack of discipline, emotional trading or over trading. They make sure you are penalized for such actions. EVEN ON SIM. The value of having stupid trading taken away from you is worth the trouble.


Third - Market Data - For $120 bucks a month by joining the combine you get access to almost ALL Live Futures quotes. All CME Equity Indices NQ, ES, YM etc, Also you get GC, CL and all currency futures like the 6E as well. Take a look at how much this costs with Esignal, Qcharts, Tradestation and the like. It is cheaper than those guys AND you get a Chatroom w/Pit Noise and possibly access to capital if you can prove you can trade.

They have seriously brought the barrier of entry to trading down to the masses. They are simply casting a VERY wide net and hoping to catch some good traders. It is a Scouting Agency... How long those traders actually stay is another matter...

By no means is this meant for everyone and I'm sure many "serious" traders will be turned off by some of the banter in the chatroom but it does provide a useful service. Because quite frankly if you can't make it past the Combine ie earning 6k in one month with $1k stops or the Accelerated Combine earning 2k in one week with $500 stops...maybe you really shouldn't be trading real money at all. Again they are looking for a fairly specific niche of trader. If your risk/reward ratio or your drawdowns cannot survive 1-2 contracts with $500-$1000 loss then this is not the option for you. I'm not saying you shoudn't be trading but this is not the firm for you. They give you the ability to trade up to 5 contracts and beyond..that is a lot of fire power that I don't recommend anyone new using the full 5 contracts. You should start with 1-2 and focus on certain 2 markets and build from there.

Had this program existed when I first started trading I wouldn't have pissed away thousands of dollars on stupid days doing stupid trades. I used to have weeks and months of profitability but would blow out accounts due to emotional over trading and not adhering to my stops. Some days you will get "bad beats" and get stopped out or close to the stop limit but just move on and come back the next day. Quite frankly TopStep is instilling that discipline and I maybe using it as crutch but it is a useful crutch at this point in time.

I'm sure there will be many loopholes people will find but this is a pretty transparent company. In fact, they have a daily session "Drill the Scout" where you can ask the Head Scout basically anything you want in regards to the company and trading.

Obviously I'm very biased bout everything as I have been with the firm for months. They are a Startup so lot of bumps in the road to be had. But I'd be happy to answer any questions. There is also a way to get a 30min delayed version of the software and charts for free for a month. The Chatroom will be Live though. For a free trial just PM me and I'll get you an invite.

I'm "Mavin" in the chatroom btw for any fellow Big Mike Trading folks.

G'Trading All!

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  #15 (permalink)
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T4 is rubbish in my opinion. I played with it, and don't get it.

I am sure it is a fun program though. If they switched to Ninja or some other decent software, then I would consider toying with it.

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  #16 (permalink)
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bluemele View Post
T4 is rubbish in my opinion. I played with it, and don't get it.

I am sure it is a fun program though. If they switched to Ninja or some other decent software, then I would consider toying with it.

Yes I agree with you, why not a Ninja??T4 is bullshit.

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  #17 (permalink)
Boston MA
 
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Fat Tails View Post
If you want to become a TopStep trader, you first have to call Melissa Footlick.

See press release: TopstepTrader Launches Unique Approach at Scouting for Traders - PR.com

I am not a native English speaker, so I don't know whether it is funny, but I think it is ...

Hello FatTails,

Yes, Melissa Footlick is funny. Wouldn't have thought you would have time for this.
By the way, how about doing 1x 2x extensions for OR much like as the IB extensions.
\
Cheers,
Kumar

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  #18 (permalink)
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TopstepTrader is tentatively scheduled for a webinar Q&A and introduction in February. As I get more details and a hard date, I'll put it on the schedule.

Mike

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  #19 (permalink)
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does anyone know of any other companies similar to this one?

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  #20 (permalink)
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Looking forward to the presentation. I would consider joining the Combine if only to use it to improve my trading as I think mavinwiz mentioned in an earlier post. Will decide after seeing what they have to say.

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  #21 (permalink)
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I tried a one week free trial. The T4 execution platform is horrible. It's like the old platforms where you need to click 10 times before you can place an order with stops, targets, etc. Very difficult to use and inefficient. I finally gave up on it. If that's the best they can come up with, then there's something fundamentally wrong with the company. The people are nice and try to be helpful, but they have alot of questions being shot at them so it's hard to get some focused help. Just my thoughts.

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  #22 (permalink)
the coin hunter
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they just admit 8 new live traders.

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  #23 (permalink)
Pismo Beach CA
 
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phantomtrader View Post
I tried a one week free trial. The T4 execution platform is horrible. It's like the old platforms where you need to click 10 times before you can place an order with stops, targets, etc. Very difficult to use and inefficient. I finally gave up on it. If that's the best they can come up with, then there's something fundamentally wrong with the company. The people are nice and try to be helpful, but they have alot of questions being shot at them so it's hard to get some focused help. Just my thoughts.

I have no experience with them but the concept they present sounds interesting, if it is handled ethically on their side.

The T4 requirement sounded odd to me right off the bat though I guess that gives them some standardization and control.

"The Future Ain't what it used to be"
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  #24 (permalink)
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Some more testimonials at "investimonials" here:

https://investimonials.com/websites/reviews-topsteptrader.aspx?page=1

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  #25 (permalink)
desert CA
 
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I was noticing the % required to pass the combines and the % required for a live account trader to stay consistent enough in profitability to be able to receive a check. Interesting info.

2 Week Combine and Required % profit to pass to live trading
30k 8.3%
50k 7%
100k 8.5%
150k 8%

4 Week Combine
30k 13.3%
50k 10%,
100k 10%,
150k 10.7%

Live Account Trading & % profit required to receive the split check (per month? biweekly? )
$30k > 17%
$50k > 10%
$100k > 10%
$150k > 7%

Looks pretty challenging. Well, maybe not too bad for some very good traders, but requires very consistent profitability to be able to receive a bi-weekly paycheck from the profit split. "Check requests can be made on the 1st and 15th of the month." https://www.topsteptrader.com:443/LiveTraderSetup

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  #26 (permalink)
Honolulu, Hawaii
 
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Cloudy View Post
I was noticing the % required to pass the combines and the % required for a live account trader to stay consistent enough in profitability to be able to receive a check. Interesting info.

2 Week Combine and Required % profit to pass to live trading
30k 8.3%
50k 7%
100k 8.5%
150k 8%

4 Week Combine
30k 13.3%
50k 10%,
100k 10%,
150k 10.7%

Live Account Trading & % profit required to receive the split check (per month? biweekly? )
$30k > 17%
$50k > 10%
$100k > 10%
$150k > 7%

Looks pretty challenging. Well, maybe not too bad for some very good traders, but requires very consistent profitability to be able to receive a bi-weekly paycheck from the profit split. "Check requests can be made on the 1st and 15th of the month." Live Trading | Live Trading Room | Live Futures Trading | TopStep

If you could do what they require, then why in the world would you not just trade on your own? I could see if you were trading and poor, but if ANYONE has RESULTS like this, please contact me! I will be your agent! And... First investor!

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  #27 (permalink)
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bluemele View Post
If you could do what they require, then why in the world would you not just trade on your own? I could see if you were trading and poor, but if ANYONE has RESULTS like this, please contact me! I will be your agent! And... First investor!

In all seriousness, I know several people who trade much better when trading with someone elses money. So I think for certain people it makes a lot of sense.

Mike

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  #28 (permalink)
the coin hunter
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Big Mike View Post
In all seriousness, I know several people who trade much better when trading with someone elses money. So I think for certain people it makes a lot of sense.

Mike

almost the same as SIM money.

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  #29 (permalink)
Los Angeles
 
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I think its a great concept and if you are under capitalized its awesome. The only issue that I have is their Dom. Not very simple at all.

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  #30 (permalink)
Honolulu, Hawaii
 
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Big Mike View Post
In all seriousness, I know several people who trade much better when trading with someone elses money. So I think for certain people it makes a lot of sense.

Mike

True. Unfortunately I have suffered from those people who then go on vacation or 'lose their mental edge' and since it isn't their money they end up sinking their investors.

Zulutrade.com is full of them. I guess it makes sense though, so I agree with you that is probably more likely someone could do it with someone else's money. For me, that works backwards in that I couldn't imagine losing someone else's dollars if I was keeping my own... Strange...

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  #31 (permalink)
arcadia
 
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bluemele View Post
If you could do what they require, then why in the world would you not just trade on your own? I could see if you were trading and poor, but if ANYONE has RESULTS like this, please contact me! I will be your agent! And... First investor!


Once Live - you don't have to maintain a performance req. You just can't lose too much of firm capital. You are not required to trade everyday or meet quotas. Just don't over trade. In fact they'd prefer you don't.

By no means is this easy. But it's not impossible either. They really are just creating an environment with strict parameters for people to trade within. Searching for talent....they never implied this is a one size fit all deal. MOST will fail. However, how many people play basketball? How many people make it it to the NBA? Granted this is a very unconventional way to scout. However given the recent Linsanity and Jeremy Lin phenomenon...how is it bad giving people a chance to trade if they can perform?

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  #32 (permalink)
Honolulu, Hawaii
 
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mavinwiz View Post
Once Live - you don't have to maintain a performance req. You just can't lose too much of firm capital. You are not required to trade everyday or meet quotas. Just don't over trade. In fact they'd prefer you don't.

By no means is this easy. But it's not impossible either. They really are just creating an environment with strict parameters for people to trade within. Searching for talent....they never implied this is a one size fit all deal. MOST will fail. However, how many people play basketball? How many people make it it to the NBA? Granted this is a very unconventional way to scout. However given the recent Linsanity and Jeremy Lin phenomenon...how is it bad giving people a chance to trade if they can perform?

I never criticized them and said they were 'bad'. I was coming from the context of a trader and if they can learn from it, good. A lot of traders have huge stops and small TP's and wouldn't even understand the value of that education until they went through it.

My understanding is that even when you are live that there are metrics you have to meet. At least that is what their old verbiage from the website mentioned about a year ago.

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  #33 (permalink)
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bluemele View Post
I never criticized them and said they were 'bad'. I was coming from the context of a trader and if they can learn from it, good. A lot of traders have huge stops and small TP's and wouldn't even understand the value of that education until they went through it.

My understanding is that even when you are live that there are metrics you have to meet. At least that is what their old verbiage from the website mentioned about a year ago.


My daddy used to back a poker player.The player won more than he lost. My dad would split the profits with the guy and then we wouldn't hear from the guy for a while. Eventually, he would show up broke and ask my dad to back him again.

My dad told me the guy blew all his winnings on women, whiskey and horses. Which I fail to see where the problem with that is.....

I'm just a simple man trading a simple plan.

My daddy always said, "Every day above ground is a good day!"
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  #34 (permalink)
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I spent the last two weeks trading as a TST Trainee. I'll put it right out front: I liked it enough to register for a 20-day Combine (more on that in a bit).

I mentioned it a bit on my journal, but after two weeks it is pretty clear that TST are pretty close to being risk fanatics. And I mean that in the most positive and admirable way. Since I often trade the overnight, I'm in the market less during RTH. That gives me the chance to interact within a couple of the TST Pits. Watch your risk, wait for your setup, what's the market state?, what's your risk?, know your levels, what's your plan?, watch your risk, and so on. Those are the type of things you hear and read across all the pits. Day in and day out, you get a steady message: trade smart.

And it's always done in an encouraging way. The whole vibe is very supportive, both from TST staffers and from traders. I've spent a couple minutes trying to boil down the overall groove to the pits and I've come up with this: sharp. There is a sharpness that keeps you on your toes in case you thought about slipping. At least that's what I get. There's a sense of respect and expectation that if you are there you are a pro. You may not be backed yet or you may not even be profitable yet, but you're expected to conduct yourself as though you are. Trade like it is your job. Again, I really dig it. I'm sure some don't but I'm not one of them

TopStepTrader Wants YOU!
But should you want TST? For some people, the answer will be no. Quite simply, it is not for everyone. First and foremost, TST is not for people learning how to trade. Sure, you can pick up some ideas and so forth, but it's not advertised or designed to teach you how to trade. That may seem obvious, but judging by some disparaging comments I've seen elsewhere, I think some people are going to TST expecting to be taught how to trade. If you are still trying to get a hang of the markets and figure out your trading style, etc. then TST is probably not an ideal fit for you right now.

It's also not for people who are looking to trade someone else's money and have no rules, requirements, expectations, or performance metrics. If that's you, perhaps you'll find a better fit than TST. Same thing goes for the Combines. In fact, to some extent, the Combines have more requirements. Makes sense to me. They use the Combines to find traders they can put with backers. Again, we all have choices so if trading by someone else's performance requirements doesn't suit you, no sweat, right? Just keep doing your thing.

While TST doesn't have "What's a Stock?" type classes, they do provide ongoing training and development. The main focus areas are psychology, market state, risk management, trading plans, coaching, and the like. One of the programs they offer Intuitive Development for Traders (IDT) is very highly regarded among Combiners and Live traders. Plus, if you go through the IDT program ($250) and you go live, instead of a 60:40 profit split you start with a 70:30 split.

The warts
While I’m cool with the overall scene, there’s still some stuff that is less than ideal to me. The first thing is you do have to trade via their chosen trading software. You don’t have to use their charts, but you will be using T4 (from CTS) for your trading. If that’s already what you use, then you should be golden. That was not the case for me and as recently as last Friday I was still learning stuff about the trading software. Expect at least some sort of learning curve if you’ve never used any version of T4.

You will be trading from the DOM. This was a bigger obstacle for me than the software itself. I have a lot bad DOM-related habits. I feel like a completely different trader when I trade from my charts. Actually, I feel like a trader. When I trade via DOM, not so much. And to be honest, I really didn’t think much about it until I had my first losing day during training. I’m still trying to come up with a solid approach to use the DOM without falling into my old bad habits. Anyway, if you are already a DOM trader, you too should be golden.

The requirements and stipulations. No I don’t think they are unfair or excessive or anything like that. There’s just some stuff that they want that is different than some of the ways I do stuff. This is probably the smallest of the warts. You go anywhere and they’re gonna have rules, regs, and so forth. If you don’t like it, keep moving. No big deal.

Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes
TST recently made some changes to their programs and some more changes are on the horizon. In fact, some price changes (increases of $50-100 depending on the program) are due to begin tomorrow, April 23rd 2012. One of the biggest changes was converting the Combines from 2- and 4-weeks to 10- and 20-day programs to be completed within 30- and 60-days, respectively. For more details on the new Combines click on the link. From what I’ve seen, TST is constantly working to expand and improve their whole program. Interactions with several traders would seem to confirm this impression.

TST Linkfest
For ease of access, I’ve provided several useful TST links. These are all just straight-through, non-affiliated links. However, they do give each trader (from Trainee up through Blue Chip) their own referral url, so here is my link: omni72 referral link. I think the only way I benefit is by getting TST Ticks which can be used in the Tick Exchange. They can be used to get stuff like TST hats, shirts, and jackets. You can use Ticks to ‘buy’ a Combine. Anyway, if someone is looking to try it out, there ya go. If not, don’t sweat it. All the other links take you directly to the corresponding page with no referral stuff.

Training Program - This is what I just finished up. When I signed up, it was a 2-week program and could use the 'bigmike' promo code to get the 2-weeks for free. They've since changed it to a 30-day program so dunno how the promo code thing works now. The 1-week free training is still available too.

10-day and 20-day Combine Programs

Example of Trade Report that Meets All Performance Requirements

Live Trader Setup

Blue Chip Traders

Software Tutorials - If you are unfamiliar with T4, I definitely recommend going here.

Education Videos

IDT - Caught a little of the all-day version of this on Saturday. Definitely seems pretty intense. Everyone I've talked to about it who went through the course can't say enough good stuff about it. And that's coming from Combiners and Live traders.

Scouting Criteria

Add a Trading Partner - Very cool program. It's optional and cost you nothing, but you can partner with TST traders (Combine and Live traders). I've heard and seen that some traders have been reluctant to try it out, but both people I approached (one is a Combiner and one is a Live trader) were cool with it and agreed to partner up. Tomorrow is the first day of my combine and partnering so I really have no idea how it will go. I've communicated with both and wouldn't have agreed to it if I didn't think it could be valuable for everyone involved.

I plan on updating this with posts about the Combine and going live.

Hope this was helpful.

Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity. ~ Seneca
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  #35 (permalink)
San Diego
 
Experience: Beginner
Platform: NinjaTrader
Broker: AMP / CQG
Trading: CL, ES, NQ
 
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I wonder if doing the Combine would help traders who want to trade for themselves and not for others. The discipline and risk management sounds good. Do they only want people who's goals include trading for others?

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  #36 (permalink)
San Diego, CA USA
 
Experience: Intermediate
Platform: NinjaTrader
Trading: ES
 
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BeachTrader View Post
I wonder if doing the Combine would help traders who want to trade for themselves and not for others. The discipline and risk management sounds good. Do they only want people who's goals include trading for others?

I believe they registered as a school as well...

"Successful trading is one long journey, not a destination" Peter Borish Former Head of Research for Paul Tudor Jones speaking on conversations with John F. Carter
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  #37 (permalink)
British Columbia
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: NINJA
Broker: ZEN
Trading: Crude
 
Posts: 1,091 since May 2010

Excellent program. Learn how to trade by doing in a 'skin in the game' simulation environment, (time and combine fee), and the reward is a fat trading account of which you manage for a very nice cut, 60-80%. It's the best way to learn for remote traders, hands down. Everyone learns from each other, pros and trainees alike, there is a ton of experiential knowledge sharing and a team environment where everybody is working toward the same goal. Every new trader should try to pass their live trader test (combine) before ever risking a single cent of real money. Trading takes time to learn, a lot of time, it should not be underestimated. New traders especially should heed this message for they won't find it amid all of the stuff being sold out there to aspiring traders. Everybody starts off green and loses, everybody, don't do it with real money. It takes time to learn, a long long long time. Get into a regimented program like tst and show that you can pass the live simulation test before becoming one of the 100% of traders who blew up their first few live trading accounts because they didn't take the time to establish and prove themselves first. You've got to do this, and it's all about experience, and tst is a great place to get lots of it. good luck

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  #38 (permalink)
San Diego, CA USA
 
Experience: Intermediate
Platform: NinjaTrader
Trading: ES
 
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TopstepTrader - Where Talent Meets Opportunity Blog

"Successful trading is one long journey, not a destination" Peter Borish Former Head of Research for Paul Tudor Jones speaking on conversations with John F. Carter
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  #39 (permalink)
Tulsa, OK
 
Experience: Beginner
Platform: Jigsaw, Ninja Trader, Sierra Chart
Broker: Ninjatrader/Rithmic
Trading: G&L Tribute Series Rampage
 
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Posts: 348 since Jan 2012
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BeachTrader View Post
I wonder if doing the Combine would help traders who want to trade for themselves and not for others. The discipline and risk management sounds good. Do they only want people who's goals include trading for others?

I think it can, BT. I don't think it matters too much if you plan to trade your own account or OPM. If it turns out you can make the grade as a Live trader, I'm sure TST would like to have you trading for them. But anyone can sign up (and pay) for the Combine, so it seems you could tailor your Combine experience to your personal goals.

Also, real quickly, I've seen a few people complain about having to pay for the combine. On the surface that is true, you do have to pay to SIM trade. Unlike most SIM trading scenarios, at TST has a team dedicated to helping you develop better trading habits and practices. You also have very realistic opportunities to get the Combine fees refunded if you meet the performance requirements (Example of a trade report that meets all performance requirements). I've talked to several people who have traded well enough to get multiple Combines comped and seem to be on the cusp of making the cut to go Live. Two more traders went Live today and if I heard correctly, each only went through the Combines once. Kudos to them!

Hope that helps.

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  #40 (permalink)
San Diego
 
Experience: Beginner
Platform: NinjaTrader
Broker: AMP / CQG
Trading: CL, ES, NQ
 
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Posts: 310 since Nov 2011
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Wow the T4 platform looks really old-fashioned compared to Ninja for example. Looks pretty limited on what you can do, especially if you like multiple targets with multiple trailing and stop strategies. That would take a while to get used to.

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  #41 (permalink)
Site Administrator,
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Manta, Ecuador
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: My own custom solution
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omni72 View Post
Example of a trade report that meets all performance requirements

Interesting report. Here it is embedded, but better explanation is at the link.



Mike

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  #42 (permalink)
Tulsa, OK
 
Experience: Beginner
Platform: Jigsaw, Ninja Trader, Sierra Chart
Broker: Ninjatrader/Rithmic
Trading: G&L Tribute Series Rampage
 
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Big Mike View Post
Interesting report. Here it is embedded, but better explanation is at the link.

Thanks Mike, excellent idea

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  #43 (permalink)
BOSTON, MA
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: Tradestation, TOS
Trading: commodities, TF
 
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Big Mike View Post
Interesting report. Here it is embedded, but better explanation is at the link.



Mike


230 cars for $2015

236 cars for $1490

300 cars for $3190

126 cars for $2295.

This is a SCARY PERFORMANCE REPORT in terms of numbers of cars traded and results.

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  #44 (permalink)
Site Administrator,
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Manta, Ecuador
 
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mfbreakout View Post
230 cars for $2015

236 cars for $1490

300 cars for $3190

126 cars for $2295.

This is a SCARY PERFORMANCE REPORT in terms of numbers of cars traded and results.

I agree, this trader is certainly a scalper. The broker is making all kinds of money though.

Mike

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  #45 (permalink)
Perdido Beach, AL
 
Experience: Intermediate
Platform: graph paper
Trading: Guitar
 
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I think I am missing something here. Can you futures guys help me with the terminology
1 car = 1 contract = $12.50 per tick ? or not?

So Thurs Jan 12th earned $2015
which then equals with 1 contract 2015/12.5 = 161 ticks if 1 contract
but this says 230 contracts?
230*12.5= $2875 per tick buying power?
so around .7 tick earned to make $2015
Decimal error?
please explain
thanx

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  #46 (permalink)
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1 car = 1 contract

If he traded 230 cars it means he traded 230 lots, 230 contracts. He made $2015, so 2015/230 = $8.76 per lot traded. $12.50/tick on ES, so 8.76/12.50 = 0.70 ticks per contract traded on average.

Mike

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  #47 (permalink)
Virginia, USA
 
Experience: Intermediate
 
Posts: 76 since Mar 2012
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I recently tried the 2-week practice at TopStepTrader. Maybe I'm just stubborn, but I just couldn't seem to adapt to the trading platform. It seemed really clunky and wasn't intuitive at all, and I felt like it would take me so long to enter my trades and set my stops that I'd miss part of the move I was trying to catch. I only sat in on a few of their training sessions; each one had a heavy emphasis on Market Profile. I'm not a fan of MP so I was a little disappointed in that. But overall I think it's a good company with a good environment, and if they would just upgrade their platform I would happily sign up for the Combine. The opportunity to trade with someone else's money really changes things psychologically! It's also a wonderful opportunity if you don't have much trading capital.

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  #48 (permalink)
British Columbia
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: NINJA
Broker: ZEN
Trading: Crude
 
Posts: 1,091 since May 2010

What do you mean by scary, looks awesome to me, what product is he trading?


mfbreakout View Post
230 cars for $2015

236 cars for $1490

300 cars for $3190

126 cars for $2295.

This is a SCARY PERFORMANCE REPORT in terms of numbers of cars traded and results.


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  #49 (permalink)
San Jose, Ca
 
Experience: Beginner
Platform: Ninja
Broker: AMP/CQG
Trading: Something moving
 
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Cloudy View Post
From looking at the stop requirements/max loss limits in the combine, it almost looks like scalping is encouraged on topsteptrader. Certainly doesn't leave much room for a trade to work especially on time frames higher than 5min. Or one has to have super entries almost always 80% of the time if not scalping.

I've tried the combine. Yes, I think they like the scalping route, but they do not dictate how you trade. You are free to use your own method. They do like to see some consistancy, so if you trade 15 lots (5 trades 3 lots ea) one day, they like to see similar numbers on following days. In other words, not all over the map with 15 one day and 50 another. The platform is terrible in my opinion. Not sure why that is what is considered prof, but I did not like using it.

David

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  #50 (permalink)
Oslo, Norway
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: CQG, Excel
Trading: CL
 
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Posts: 1,198 since Apr 2010

T4 is a good platform, at least if one is stateside. If one does not like the interface, one can wrap Sierra Chart around it. That will be similar to using NinjaTrader.

The reason for using T4 is probably because it is the cheapest, stablest platform that has spreading capabilities. Most professional traders are spreaders.

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  #51 (permalink)
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Lornz View Post
T4 is a good platform, at least if one is stateside. If one does not like the interface, one can wrap Sierra Chart around it. That will be similar to using NinjaTrader.

The reason for using T4 is probably because it is the cheapest, stablest platform that has spreading capabilities. Most professional traders are spreaders.

A lot of floor traders seem to use T4 from my understanding.

Mike

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  #52 (permalink)
British Columbia
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: NINJA
Broker: ZEN
Trading: Crude
 
Posts: 1,091 since May 2010

T4 is ok, get's the job done, fast connection, stable. For point and click traders, scalpers especially, it is a bit of a pain though. It doesn't offer bracket orders so if you are trading with more than one lot you need to do a lot of point and clicking, and the buttons are really tiny and along the top, so, not really user friendly and not very good for moving your position around quickly and efficiently.

Ninjatrader's bracket orders are great but still the T4 dom is better because you can stretch it out and see more prices. Ninjatraders ability to hide entry and exit orders from the hft machines is pretty cool though. X-Trader is the bomb, but it's expensive. At any rate, T4 offers a fast and reliable connection, it's just opens up a lot of room for fat finger error and detracts from focus on the tape when trying to get more complex orders into the dom, so it's not great for scalpers in fast markets if they are doing anything other than a basic oco all in order. The people at T4 have been saying for some months that they will be adding bracket order capability although they have said they cannot give an eta. Would be nice to see some big fat buttons on the side like X trader as well.....


Big Mike View Post
A lot of floor traders seem to use T4 from my understanding.

Mike


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  #53 (permalink)
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I am taking my follow-up T4 questions to the CTS T4 thread:



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  #54 (permalink)
Oslo, Norway
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: CQG, Excel
Trading: CL
 
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Big Mike View Post
A lot of floor traders seem to use T4 from my understanding.

Mike

Yes, that's my understanding as well.

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  #55 (permalink)
Tulsa, OK
 
Experience: Beginner
Platform: Jigsaw, Ninja Trader, Sierra Chart
Broker: Ninjatrader/Rithmic
Trading: G&L Tribute Series Rampage
 
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Big Mike View Post
I agree, this trader is certainly a scalper. The broker is making all kinds of money though.

Mike

Yeah, it's kinda weird that they use this as their example. After spending 2+ weeks with TST, I can vouch for the fact that they DO NOT encourage this type of trading. I do know they have been overhauling their website, so hopefully they plan on updating that page with something more aligned with the general TST theme: don't trade to trade, wait for your setup. Then again, maybe scalpers help subsidize the program for the rest of us

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  #56 (permalink)
Tulsa, OK
 
Experience: Beginner
Platform: Jigsaw, Ninja Trader, Sierra Chart
Broker: Ninjatrader/Rithmic
Trading: G&L Tribute Series Rampage
 
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Posts: 348 since Jan 2012
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Big Mike View Post
A lot of floor traders seem to use T4 from my understanding.

Mike


Lornz View Post
T4 is a good platform, at least if one is stateside. If one does not like the interface, one can wrap Sierra Chart around it. That will be similar to using NinjaTrader.

The reason for using T4 is probably because it is the cheapest, stablest platform that has spreading capabilities. Most professional traders are spreaders.

Yeah, I'm not trying to disparage T4. Heck, I'm actually hoping the Live setup has the option to add Steidlmayer's Volume Strips. It's just a personal preference thing. In the years trading via OEC's platform, I've never experienced anything but bullet-proof stability. But more importantly to me is that I just prefer to trade straight from my charts. As Lornz mentioned, you can tie in the T4 data feed to SC, but the only way to enter orders is via the actual T4 front end. I can trade all I want via SC and the T4 feed, it's just that my TST account doesn't reflect those trades.

That's all I'll say about the platform. First, I realize the extended conversation has been moved to a T4 thread. Second, as long as I'm with TST it's what I will be using, pure and simple. And thirdly, I just noticed tonight while reading Lornz's post that CTS is a sponsor



Honestly, even if they used OEC or VK for that matter, I'd still be tethered to the DOM. Is it possible to train myself to trade via the DOM in the same manner I've taught myself to trade from the charts? Absolutely. I just wasn't planning on having to do it. Just brings me back to this line:


Oscar Wilde
I can resist everything except temptation.

Okay, gonna go watch some Hard Right Edge. Sounds like there should be some bow-chicka-bow-wow 70's music in the background. But it's not like that

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  #57 (permalink)
Oslo, Norway
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: CQG, Excel
Trading: CL
 
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Posts: 1,198 since Apr 2010

Haha! Now I feel like a prostitute...

For the record, I'm only using T4 as my back-up. You can place trades in SC via T4, but you have to have your clearing firm to "open" your account.

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  #58 (permalink)
British Columbia
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: NINJA
Broker: ZEN
Trading: Crude
 
Posts: 1,091 since May 2010

At any rate, this thread is not about T4, which is just a professional grade stripped down dom, and it gets the job done. This thread is about Topsteptrader. Every new trader should pass their live trader test, the combine, before trading real money. If you can pass the combine, you are good to go. Doing simulation on your own is not the same. Here you are in a competitive arena, your stats cannot be fudged, you cannot make mistakes, you have your time and money as skin in the game. It's as real as trading real money as you are going to get, and anybody who can't pass it is going to mess themselves up pretty bad trading real money. Anyways, I'm starting one next Monday and intend to crush it, come and see me do it as I take the next step to managing a 150,000$ trading account...

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  #59 (permalink)
Oslo, Norway
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: CQG, Excel
Trading: CL
 
Lornz's Avatar
 
Posts: 1,198 since Apr 2010

It's a stretch to say that all new traders should pass their combine. If one has enough capital to trade with and a way to make money, there is no point in giving up a percentage of one's income. Swing/position and options traders also have little to gain from passing the combine.

That being said, TopstepTrader is a good firm for traders with talent, but no money. I really wish there was something like that available when I got started; I would have been able to compound at a much faster pace.

Good luck with your combine!

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  #60 (permalink)
British Columbia
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: NINJA
Broker: ZEN
Trading: Crude
 
Posts: 1,091 since May 2010

I think all traders should prove themselves in a simulated environment before trading with real money. In what profession would people in their training levels be given full responsibilities to manage so much risk? Simulated trading on your own isn't comparable because you are not held to account. If you make a mistake, you can say it didn't count, you can fool yourself into thinking you have the real skills needed to trade. A fancy chart is not a skill, this is the fate of most new traders. The real talent takes time master, and it doesn't happen in two weeks or two months. Getting into a regimented program like topsteptrader is the closest a trainee trader can get to real trading experience because you are held accountable and you do have skin in the game. There you will see see how many very smart people have spent so much time learning this game and from them you will gain a tremendous amount of experiential knowledge and mentorship that you just can't get on your own.

The combine is a high bar to pass, to be sure. The one month test requires the trader to earn 10% on the risk capital allocated to them, 5k on 50, 10 on a hundred etc. From what I've been able to gather it seems most successful professional traders are able to do consistently 3-8% on risk capital per month. This is intraday trading I'm talking about. So 10% is a very big challenge for a trader without a track record. I've come close on several combines but not yet cracked the 10%. If a new trader can do a few combines and see they are doing better than 3% per month, then maybe they don't need to pass the combine, maybe they are ready. At any rate, the topstep system is the best way, imo, to prove your ability by the numbers. And what a great way to do it, interacting and learning from seasoned professionals and trainees alike. It's a great group.

Lot's of other benefits of being a part of this group include interviews with professional psychologists like Andrew Menaker who does a weekly seminar and daily interviews with live professional traders. You become part of a network of successful people and you learn so much this way. You don't get this kind of experience from a book or self training on your own. They work with traders on the skills that are most important in trading, they don't show you methods or charts and bs like that, of course they do have some basic stuff stuff like that for brand new people starting out, but that's not their focus. Their focus is to identify talent and work with those people. If you are trading their risk capital and paying out 20-30% to the equity partners, who cares. If you want to make more, increase your account size. And don't forget that risk runs both ways. There are other benefits as well, such as a back office and a risk manager overseeing your daily trades, and equity partners their to help you with things. I think this program is a real opportunity and anybody starting out in this game would be wise to 'NOT' open a trading account with a broker before meeting some of the people in this program and seeing what they have been through on their path to becoming professionals. If this program had been around when I started I could have saved myself a whole lot of time and money, the time being the main factor here, I've learned so much from TST, thanks everybody over there!

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  #61 (permalink)
Oslo, Norway
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: CQG, Excel
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Posts: 1,198 since Apr 2010

I agree that it is a good product for discretionary intraday futures traders, but that is not the only way to trade. That was my point.

I'm pretty sure that the few who make it through the combine are the same people who would've made it on their own, but the service opens doors for underfunded talented traders, of course.

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  #62 (permalink)
British Columbia
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: NINJA
Broker: ZEN
Trading: Crude
 
Posts: 1,091 since May 2010

I think the program is good for anybody really, discretionary or systematic, rich or poor, because who can really afford to learn this game with a 150,000 of risk capital and 15 lot buying power. Decamillionaires can't afford this because anybody starting out at this game underestimates the challenge and 99% will lost 100% of their risk capital. Every trader needs to prove they have mastered the concepts of risk management in sim before trading real money. Simming on your own is not the same, sitting in a room somewhere in isolation pretending to trade is not going propel you along the learning curve, on the contrary, it will be far from realistic and more likely to bring about bad habits. For those that pass the combine perhaps it is true that they could have done it on their own but the regimented process of the combine and the experiential knowledge sharing and team working environment definitely accelerated their learning curves. All of the live traders who have passed the combine will attest to that. But to be sure, few will pass, it's a tough game, a brutally tough way to make a living, the challenge that it is should not be underestimated. It will not happen overnight, it will take a minimum of one year's practice, but in most cases it is more like 2-3 years to reach a level of competency. The combine process can shorten this down by a good 30-50% I would think, by keeping people on the right developmental track and learning from others and by doing etc. Anyways, just looking at my stuff now, most of my ideas are impossible for a human to trade, very discouraging. Just trying to nail down an approach for this combine. The opportunities that are available to manual trading seem to be more and more on the larger time frames, whatever that means these days. What is your swing frame?

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  #63 (permalink)
Sydney
 
Experience: Intermediate
Platform: Ninjatrader
 
Posts: 17 since Mar 2010
Thanks: 4 given, 21 received

It appears that Topsteptrader has nearly the doubled the prices for participants who wish to enter their Combines.

With the doubling of the prices, Topsteptrader should not therefore be surpised to find that not many people from now on will use their services!

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  #64 (permalink)
Houston,Tx
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: NinjaTrader
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Lornz View Post
.... I really wish there was something like that available when I got started; I would have been able to compound at a much faster pace ....

Good luck with your combine!

But then you wouldn't be the self made man you are today.... ...


Aussielad View Post
It appears that Topsteptrader has nearly the doubled the prices for participants who wish to enter their Combines.

With the doubling of the prices, Topsteptrader should not therefore be surpised to find that not many people from now on will use their services!

Maybe that's their intention ... to screen out more applicants.

I'm just a simple man trading a simple plan.

My daddy always said, "Every day above ground is a good day!"
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  #65 (permalink)
arcadia
 
Experience: Intermediate
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I think the raised prices is a filtering process. Getting more committed people to try it. People however still have to realize that's it a raised DEPOSIT. Even if you don't hit the profit goals, those who meet 2 out of 4 trading performance statistics have the option of getting their deposit returned. That's pretty mind boggling from a business perspective.

They are giving you a chance to earn your money back. How many places can you say do that? The goal is to find and filter good traders and even reward those who show competency.

From the FAQ section:

Yes. The deposit will be refunded at the end of the Combine if the account balance is above the initial balance, daily loss limit was not hit AND 2 out of 4 of the performance requirements* have been met, which are as follows:

- Overall Average Win greater than Overall Average Loss
- Overall Average Win Duration greater than Overall Average Loss Duration
- Largest Winning Day greater than Largest Losing Day
- Total Win % greater than 45%

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  #66 (permalink)
Sydney
 
Experience: Intermediate
Platform: Ninjatrader
 
Posts: 17 since Mar 2010
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By doubling the prices of the combine, it really cannot be argued that Topstep wishes to tighten up the screening process.

From various press releases that have been done on Topsteptrader, the CEO, Patek mentions that 95 per cent of people who enter the Combines fail to become a funded trader.

Therefore, by doubling the prices of the combines in effect doubles the revenue of the Topsteptrader Site, that is if demand will remain constant for their services.

As a prediction, in future there will be less and less people signing on, and Topsetp Trader will have no choice but to decrease the price of entry to attract people to use it.

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  #67 (permalink)
Houston,Tx
 
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Aussielad View Post
By doubling the prices of the combine, it really cannot be argued that Topstep wishes to tighten up the screening process.

From various press releases that have been done on Topsteptrader, the CEO, Patek mentions that 95 per cent of people who enter the Combines fail to become a funded trader.

Therefore, by doubling the prices of the combines in effect doubles the revenue of the Topsteptrader Site, that is if demand will remain constant for their services.

As a prediction, in future there will be less and less people signing on, and Topsetp Trader will have no choice but to decrease the price of entry to attract people to use it.


If it is cost prohibitive to deal with so many new applicants .... double the price... cut the applications in half ... same income stream... lower cost... higher net profit

I'm just a simple man trading a simple plan.

My daddy always said, "Every day above ground is a good day!"
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  #68 (permalink)
Oslo, Norway
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: CQG, Excel
Trading: CL
 
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Posts: 1,198 since Apr 2010


syxforex View Post
I think the program is good for anybody really, discretionary or systematic, rich or poor, because who can really afford to learn this game with a 150,000 of risk capital and 15 lot buying power. Decamillionaires can't afford this because anybody starting out at this game underestimates the challenge and 99% will lost 100% of their risk capital. Every trader needs to prove they have mastered the concepts of risk management in sim before trading real money. Simming on your own is not the same, sitting in a room somewhere in isolation pretending to trade is not going propel you along the learning curve, on the contrary, it will be far from realistic and more likely to bring about bad habits. For those that pass the combine perhaps it is true that they could have done it on their own but the regimented process of the combine and the experiential knowledge sharing and team working environment definitely accelerated their learning curves. All of the live traders who have passed the combine will attest to that. But to be sure, few will pass, it's a tough game, a brutally tough way to make a living, the challenge that it is should not be underestimated. It will not happen overnight, it will take a minimum of one year's practice, but in most cases it is more like 2-3 years to reach a level of competency. The combine process can shorten this down by a good 30-50% I would think, by keeping people on the right developmental track and learning from others and by doing etc. Anyways, just looking at my stuff now, most of my ideas are impossible for a human to trade, very discouraging. Just trying to nail down an approach for this combine. The opportunities that are available to manual trading seem to be more and more on the larger time frames, whatever that means these days. What is your swing frame?


I both swing/position and trade intraday. My trading is not time frame dependent, but purely event-driven.

I agree that the program looks is a good way to take sim trading seriously. I actually checked it out last year, when I tried to get my brother to start trading.

For the record, I never sim traded. I sat and observed the market, did some statistical analysis, prayed to a higher power, and consequently kicked ass!

It's hard to justify taking a few weeks off to do sim trading, then have to give up 20% and pay much more in commissions. But, like I stated earlier, it seems like an excellent solution for underfunded traders and beginners wanting a more realistic simulated experience....

Alright, I'm done..

By the way, my results exceed the combine requirements every week!

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  #69 (permalink)
British Columbia
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: NINJA
Broker: ZEN
Trading: Crude
 
Posts: 1,091 since May 2010

This is not true. When they started there was one combine, it still exists, the price has not changed. They have added a number of different combine options however. In every combine the trader must reach the profit objective and stay within the rules. The rules are simple, you need to meet two of three. If a trader goes through the combine and does not meet the profit objective but does stay within the rules, the next combine is free, rolled over. On my last one I met 70% of the profit objective and adhered to all three rules, hence, the one I start tomorrow will cost me nothing, it is free if you can at least stay within the rules. Most, however, cannot even do this.


Aussielad View Post
It appears that Topsteptrader has nearly the doubled the prices for participants who wish to enter their Combines.

With the doubling of the prices, Topsteptrader should not therefore be surpised to find that not many people from now on will use their services!


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  #70 (permalink)
British Columbia
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: NINJA
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Trading: Crude
 
Posts: 1,091 since May 2010

If what you say is true, it is very impressive Lornz. I agree the time factor is killer, I am in a very tough spot right now for all the time I have dedicated to this process. I personally think the value of a 20% payout on risk capital is a pretty good deal, considering all of the benefits of having a risk manager in the background and a network of really solid people to work with. The network is very good, better than trading alone I think. And when I get down to paradise and have an internet outage or the algos shut down the nymex again it will be nice to know know that my risk manager on the floor in Chicago will be there to take care of things... this cannot be understated...


Lornz View Post
I both swing/position and trade intraday. My trading is not time frame dependent, but purely event-driven.

I agree that the program looks is a good way to take sim trading seriously. I actually checked it out last year, when I tried to get my brother to start trading.

For the record, I never sim traded. I sat and observed the market, did some statistical analysis, prayed to a higher power, and consequently kicked ass!

It's hard to justify taking a few weeks off to do sim trading, then have to give up 20% and pay much more in commissions. But, like I stated earlier, it seems like an excellent solution for underfunded traders and beginners wanting a more realistic simulated experience....

Alright, I'm done..

By the way, my results exceed the combine requirements every week!


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  #71 (permalink)
Tulsa, OK
 
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Lornz View Post
I both swing/position and trade intraday. My trading is not time frame dependent, but purely event-driven.

Great point, thx for bringing it up: during the combine, all positions are intraday. Once you go live you could do swing/position trades.


Lornz View Post
It's hard to justify taking a few weeks off to do sim trading, then have to give up 20% and pay much more in commissions. But, like I stated earlier, it seems like an excellent solution for underfunded traders and beginners wanting a more realistic simulated experience....

I've seen this perspective before, and it still confuses me a bit. The parts I don't understand:

Taking a few weeks off to do sim trading - Assuming you would be trading an already active strategy, it seems like this would be more like just trading on a separate account. Or to concurrently test new ideas with zero capital at risk. I do understand it might require some diverting some attention to getting familiar to the platform, account requirements, and so forth. Fully aware of that part of it

Have to give up 20% ... and commissions - If it was capital you had provide, I absolutely understand this objection. However, in this scenario, you aren't providing any risk capital. So in my eyes it looks like choosing 100% of zero instead of 80% of gains from a 50k-150k account.

While I completely agree that so far this type of scenario seems like a great option for underfunded and newer traders, it actually seems like it would be very appealing to established traders.

Even if you're already trading a 500k-750k account, it seems like a good way to expand your trading program. Kind of along the lines of running a mini-fund (up to 150k, so more like micro-mini ). However, unlike the '2 and 20' where a fund manager gets 2% of assets and 20% of any gains, you're looking at keeping 80% of gains.

This also ties in with my earlier thought that this seems like a good way to test new ideas or segment your trading capital. Again, beneficial to an established trader. I am not an established, full-time trader, which may explain why this seems like a good idea


Lornz View Post
Alright, I'm done..

By the way, my results exceed the combine requirements every week!

I hope to see more your perspective on this topic, but can also accept that it may have already reached its point of diminishing returns for your time invested. Thanks for your thoughts and comments, Lornz, they are always appreciated.

Btw, kudos on the excellent combine results

Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity. ~ Seneca
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  #72 (permalink)
Des Moines, Iowa
 
Experience: None
Platform: Ninja, TOS
Broker: AMP/CQG, TOS
Trading: CL, TF, GC
 
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Lornz View Post
I both swing/position and trade intraday. My trading is not time frame dependent, but purely event-driven.

I agree that the program looks is a good way to take sim trading seriously. I actually checked it out last year, when I tried to get my brother to start trading.

For the record, I never sim traded. I sat and observed the market, did some statistical analysis, prayed to a higher power, and consequently kicked ass!

It's hard to justify taking a few weeks off to do sim trading, then have to give up 20% and pay much more in commissions. But, like I stated earlier, it seems like an excellent solution for underfunded traders and beginners wanting a more realistic simulated experience....

Alright, I'm done..

By the way, my results exceed the combine requirements every week!

i havnt delved into the workings of this company totally yet, but did they offer you a funded account on your accomplishments?

dont believe anything you hear and only half of what you see

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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  #73 (permalink)
Oslo, Norway
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: CQG, Excel
Trading: CL
 
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Posts: 1,198 since Apr 2010


syxforex View Post
If what you say is true, it is very impressive Lornz. I agree the time factor is killer, I am in a very tough spot right now for all the time I have dedicated to this process. I personally think the value of a 20% payout on risk capital is a pretty good deal, considering all of the benefits of having a risk manager in the background and a network of really solid people to work with. The network is very good, better than trading alone I think. And when I get down to paradise and have an internet outage or the algos shut down the nymex again it will be nice to know know that my risk manager on the floor in Chicago will be there to take care of things... this cannot be understated...

Thanks!

I feel that we're talking past each other. I'm actually agreeing that it is a good program. I've stated several times that I wish I had this opportunity when I got started. I made very little money for the first 6 months, as my account size was too small for my strategy. But, if one is patient enough, the compounding effect soon kicks in.

I agree on the last point. That goes for choosing any broker, really. People are too focused on margin, but should really be concerned about someone picking up the phone in the case of an emergency.


omni72 View Post
Great point, thx for bringing it up: during the combine, all positions are intraday. Once you go live you could do swing/position trades.



I've seen this perspective before, and it still confuses me a bit. The parts I don't understand:

Taking a few weeks off to do sim trading - Assuming you would be trading an already active strategy, it seems like this would be more like just trading on a separate account. Or to concurrently test new ideas with zero capital at risk. I do understand it might require some diverting some attention to getting familiar to the platform, account requirements, and so forth. Fully aware of that part of it

Have to give up 20% ... and commissions - If it was capital you had provide, I absolutely understand this objection. However, in this scenario, you aren't providing any risk capital. So in my eyes it looks like choosing 100% of zero instead of 80% of gains from a 50k-150k account.

While I completely agree that so far this type of scenario seems like a great option for underfunded and newer traders, it actually seems like it would be very appealing to established traders.

Even if you're already trading a 500k-750k account, it seems like a good way to expand your trading program. Kind of along the lines of running a mini-fund (up to 150k, so more like micro-mini ). However, unlike the '2 and 20' where a fund manager gets 2% of assets and 20% of any gains, you're looking at keeping 80% of gains.

This also ties in with my earlier thought that this seems like a good way to test new ideas or segment your trading capital. Again, beneficial to an established trader. I am not an established, full-time trader, which may explain why this seems like a good idea


I hope to see more your perspective on this topic, but can also accept that it may have already reached its point of diminishing returns for your time invested. Thanks for your thoughts and comments, Lornz, they are always appreciated.

Btw, kudos on the excellent combine results

I don't know if I'd be able to manage trading using two trading platforms at the same time for my intraday stuff. I go into a state of hyperconcentration. I also don't really find the T4 very intuitive, though it is very robust and stable.

I see the 20% as interest on a loan. I have to pay 20% to borrow 150k to trade with, but what if I already have that or more? It makes sense as a way to test out new approaches, though.
I guess one also could look at it as insurance, paying a premium to avoid the risk of losing one's hard-earned cash. That maybe worthwhile to people struggling with fear of capital loss, but not cold-blooded psychopaths like myself.

Don't get me wrong, I think it looks like a good deal for a a large number of beginning traders. And, if one can use it in addition to what one's already doing, it can make sense for experienced traders, as well. But, if one has a strategy that is not scalable, it doesn't make sense to give up 20%. On the other hand. there are traders not producing the returns required by the combine, but have highly scalable strategies, making millions a year.

To be clear, I meant that my live trading results exceed the requirements of the combine -- not that I had taken the combine itself. However, I feel that I have to give it a go now; to put my money where my mouth is. I like a challenge, and will try to find time for it during the summer. I need to get my exams out of the way first. I'm pretty sure I will have my worst month due to performance anxiety, and I probably will have to register a new username!



madLyfe View Post
i havnt delved into the workings of this company totally yet, but did they offer you a funded account on your accomplishments?

No, I haven't done their combine. I tried it a few days, but I was doing it show my brother the ropes. Then it was his turn and things quickly took a turn for the worse...

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  #74 (permalink)
Houston,Tx
 
Experience: Advanced
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syxforex View Post
If what you say is true, it is very impressive Lornz. I agree the time factor is killer, I am in a very tough spot right now for all the time I have dedicated to this process. I personally think the value of a 20% payout on risk capital is a pretty good deal, considering all of the benefits of having a risk manager in the background and a network of really solid people to work with. The network is very good, better than trading alone I think. And when I get down to paradise and have an internet outage or the algos shut down the nymex again it will be nice to know know that my risk manager on the floor in Chicago will be there to take care of things... this cannot be understated...

But that sounds almost like ... getting a job...

I'm just a simple man trading a simple plan.

My daddy always said, "Every day above ground is a good day!"
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  #75 (permalink)
British Columbia
 
Experience: Advanced
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Broker: ZEN
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ThatManFromTexas View Post
But that sounds almost like ... getting a job...

That's what professional traders call it, and their certainly is a high degree of professionalism at topsteptrader. It certainly is hard to see it as a job at times, when you are sitting at home hacking away and wondering wtf you have gotten yourself into. If you were getting up and going to work at a bank or hedge fund everyday then you'd definitely feel like you were on the right career track so I try to keep in mind that many thousands of traders get up every day and do this professionally. I got to doing this after having my face severely disfigured by a gang of Triads in Asia and after finding myself unemployed in the finance industry during the financial crisis. It's hard to believe the years have just gone by and I'm still here working away at this. It's painful to be sure. Still can't afford to get my brow back where it should be, really painful shit. Anyways, I'm all in now, that's for sure, I will not quit. Working with the people at topstep has been really good for keeping it professional. Can't say enough about the community. I feel like I'm part of really good business and plan to make the best of it.

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  #76 (permalink)
Houston,Tx
 
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syxforex View Post
That's what professional traders call it, and their certainly is a high degree of professionalism at topsteptrader. It certainly is hard to see it as a job at times, when you are sitting at home hacking away and wondering wtf you have gotten yourself into. If you were getting up and going to work at a bank or hedge fund everyday then you'd definitely feel like you were on the right career track so I try to keep in mind that many thousands of traders get up every day and do this professionally. I got to doing this after having my face severely disfigured by a gang of Triads in Asia and after finding myself unemployed in the finance industry during the financial crisis. It's hard to believe the years have just gone by and I'm still here working away at this. It's painful to be sure. Still can't afford to get my brow back where it should be, really painful shit. Anyways, I'm all in now, that's for sure, I will not quit. Working with the people at topstep has been really good for keeping it professional. Can't say enough about the community. I feel like I'm part of really good business and plan to make the best of it.

I wan't criticizing anyone else... I was just speaking for myself...

I'm just a simple man trading a simple plan.

My daddy always said, "Every day above ground is a good day!"
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  #77 (permalink)
British Columbia
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: NINJA
Broker: ZEN
Trading: Crude
 
Posts: 1,091 since May 2010

That's cool, I wasn't sure if you were being sarcastic or sardonic or what not... but I do know exactly what you mean. I really wish I was back in Hong Kong going to work at the IFC everyday. Not having a 'real' job and the structure is hard on the soul. One of the toughest things about trying to make prop trading a career outside of a big financial company is the doubt on so many levels about what you are doing. One of the big pros of working on your career at topsteptrader is being part of a structured organization, seeing people succeed, and hearing from pros everyday who have been in the industry for a long time, it definitely brings a sense of business structure. Not as good as working in a swank office but it's definitely a lot better than working alone at home somewhere..

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  #78 (permalink)
Des Moines, Iowa
 
Experience: None
Platform: Ninja, TOS
Broker: AMP/CQG, TOS
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Posts: 1,644 since Feb 2011
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has anyone from bmt actually become a live trader with these guys?

dont believe anything you hear and only half of what you see

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  #79 (permalink)
British Columbia
 
Experience: Advanced
Platform: NINJA
Broker: ZEN
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Posts: 1,091 since May 2010

I'm right on track to pass my current combine. We have a bunch of very good live traders who have come up through the program and are now trading live and making money. I started doing combines about 18 months ago. In that time I've made some good friends in the room and have been proud to see them move up through the process by passing the combine and reaching the ultimate goal of trading professionally. One of our guys who started about six months before I did and went live in the spring is making huge money now, 3k/day on average. You can't go wrong with this program. It's pretty simple. Show them you can trade in the simulator, prove your stats, and they will back you. It's a very controlled process where risk management is heavily emphasized and practiced. They won't let you lose real money, but they will let you make unlimited if you have the stuff.

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  #80 (permalink)
Des Moines, Iowa
 
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syxforex View Post
I'm right on track to pass my current combine. We have a bunch of very good live traders who have come up through the program and are now trading live and making money. I started doing combines about 18 months ago. In that time I've made some good friends in the room and have been proud to see them move up through the process by passing the combine and reaching the ultimate goal of trading professionally. One of our guys who started about six months before I did and went live in the spring is making huge money now, 3k/day on average. You can't go wrong with this program. It's pretty simple. Show them you can trade in the simulator, prove your stats, and they will back you. It's a very controlled process where risk management is heavily emphasized and practiced. They won't let you lose real money, but they will let you make unlimited if you have the stuff.

how much have you spent in combine fees? also i guess im wondering why you wouldnt just try and beat the rules of the combine on your own before you join the combine?

dont believe anything you hear and only half of what you see

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  #81 (permalink)
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syxforex View Post
I'm right on track to pass my current combine. We have a bunch of very good live traders who have come up through the program and are now trading live and making money. I started doing combines about 18 months ago. In that time I've made some good friends in the room and have been proud to see them move up through the process by passing the combine and reaching the ultimate goal of trading professionally. One of our guys who started about six months before I did and went live in the spring is making huge money now, 3k/day on average. You can't go wrong with this program. It's pretty simple. Show them you can trade in the simulator, prove your stats, and they will back you. It's a very controlled process where risk management is heavily emphasized and practiced. They won't let you lose real money, but they will let you make unlimited if you have the stuff.

Are they teaching you how to trade? What are you getting out of the combine?

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  #82 (permalink)
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New upcoming webinar from TopstepTrader on Trading Psychology, presented by Michael Patak and John Hoagland:



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  #83 (permalink)
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BeachTrader View Post
Are they teaching you how to trade? What are you getting out of the combine?

Learning how to trade is not a simple formula. I don't have time to write a book here or really dive into all that I have learned in all of the many faculties of trading. It's like any profession. If you are learning carpentry you would be wise to sit at the feet of a master rather than just heading out to your own shed with a book and a bag of hammers. Being in an environment with experienced people is going to get you there faster for obvious reasons, think about learning any profession on your own versus in an professional environment and hopefully you can see the logic. No one can teach you how to trade, persay, you can learn a lot from other people, but ultimately you need to learn things that only personal experience and wisdom will show you. If you spend enough time going into the same market every day with a plan to take out x or so number of ticks, you can expect that eventually you will either get it or you won't, it just depends on how much time you are willing to risk. I've spent years in a simulator. Most people outside the futures trading industry would probably look at that and think insanity. I don't know of any successful intraday futures traders who have put in less than that. I think you can definitely speed up the learning curve in the topsteptrader environment. They do offer some basic training classes but the real learning is done by doing and from experiential sharing, and be forewarned, becoming an intraday futures trader is a long term endeavour, only 10% succeed, and of those most put in a few years of intense study. Trading is also like a professional sport, it's intense, though it has the opposite effect on your physical health, until you can manage constant stress, which usually doesn't happen before you gain some sort of competency. It's one of the hardest things you can try and do with your life, if you are young and have good opportunities, you might consider them first. Good luck.

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  #84 (permalink)
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They allow limited time guest logins to their squawkbox rooms. Very nice looking popups.

TST Trading Floor

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  #85 (permalink)
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Anyone else on futures.io (formerly BMT) go through this, and care to share their thoughts?

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  #86 (permalink)
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Futures Operator View Post
Anyone else on futures.io (formerly BMT) go through this, and care to share their thoughts?

There is a free trial period, go into the trading room of your choice, they have live and aspiring traders organized into different rooms, ie equities, energy,, metals, etc... in each one you can pm directly any of the traders in the room and they will all be more than happy to share with your their experience...

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  #87 (permalink)
San Jose, Ca
 
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Anyone else on futures.io (formerly BMT) go through this, and care to share their thoughts?

I've done it a couple of times. Unfortunately I wasn't ready to advance.

I like the concept of being funded. I like not having to invest equity. I don't feel that it is really a training environment. It may be different since when I did it, but you a required to be in the chat room (sqwack box). They have an announcer like a radio host that gives prices levels and I guess some of the coaches provide what they feel are value areas for certain markets. There is a lot of text chat going on. I find the text chat distracting as well as the commentary, so I used to enter the room and didn't listen. I always felt the trading required focus and attention and they are talking and chatting away.

The platform at the time, and I believe still is T4. I didn't use the charting, but we are required to trade from it. I felt the DOM is awful. They say its state of the art, and maybe I don't know it wall enough, but I found it unfriendly compared to a Ninja DOM. I have not been able to find a way to set multiple targets and for setting a stop versus a limit etc one needs to click a button first.

All in all if you want to trade, don't have money to trade with and don't want to have to put up equity, I think it's a good thing to do. They are looking for discipline. Maybe that's why I have not made it.

D

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  #88 (permalink)
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Just noticed they post a fair amount of live interviews with traders once they accept them into their program and fund them:

Where Talent Meets Opportunity - YouTube

For example, here is the newest one:



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  #89 (permalink)
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Interesting, they are adding Ninja? I'm not sure I followed what Michael was saying. Anyone have info? If not I will try to remember to ask during Tuesday's futures.io (formerly BMT) webinar.



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  #90 (permalink)
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Apparently deal (TopStepTrader + Ninja) is in the working:

TopStepTrader.com & NinjaTrader - NinjaTrader Support Forum

It would be good to ask them during webinar anyway.

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  #91 (permalink)
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I don't know a single person whom has passed the combine. I think they make it that way just to collect fees for the hope of being a prop trader. I think they go by Patak trading as well.

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dandxg View Post
I don't know a single person whom has passed the combine. I think they make it that way just to collect fees for the hope of being a prop trader. I think they go by Patak trading as well.

The founder is Michael Patak, so yes Patak is involved

Online Futures Trading,online future trading,online future traders

My understanding is that the funding for TST traders that pass the Combine comes from the Patak partners (equity partners).

I will try and remember to ask how many people pass the Combine, but I would just guess it is very similar to the number of people that are overall successful with trading (a very small number).

I'm not coming to their defense or anything about charging fees, but I hope you don't expect them to work for free?

Whether or not it is valuable to you, naturally is only something each individual trader can determine for themselves.

How many times did you take the Combine yourself? I assume you did not pass, do you think that is because of TST or was it because of your trading performance during the Combine?

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  #93 (permalink)
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I know it was a dud. But that TDKR confusing chant gets into my head "This is gotham! gotham! This is gotham! gotham! .. " ; Where the old guy who looks like Michael Caine askance in that misleading trailer says whatever the chant really was, that it meant "rise.." ;

So how many rises past the almost impossible challenge of the Combine and becomes CP prop firm trader for TST


(just some TDKR fun. I like their open guest trading rooms and TST looks legit to me. At least far much more so than those "prop firms" that advertise trading jobs on craigslist!)

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  #94 (permalink)
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Big Mike View Post
The founder is Michael Patak, so yes Patak is involved

Online Futures Trading,online future trading,online future traders

My understanding is that the funding for TST traders that pass the Combine comes from the Patak partners (equity partners).

I will try and remember to ask how many people pass the Combine, but I would just guess it is very similar to the number of people that are overall successful with trading (a very small number).

I'm not coming to their defense or anything about charging fees, but I hope you don't expect them to work for free?

Whether or not it is valuable to you, naturally is only something each individual trader can determine for themselves.

How many times did you take the Combine yourself? I assume you did not pass, do you think that is because of TST or was it because of your trading performance during the Combine?

Mike

I didn't bother with it at all Mike after I saw, what appeared to be, legit complaints about them on ET. I was some time ago. I don't think they should work for free, but I have a hard time believing that the cost they charge was just for admin and data storage. I don't buy that one. It smelled about as logical as SMB charging people 10k for training and then when you have a couple of losing days they boot you and pocket your cash for crap training.

It didn't pass the smell test IMO. Hey if they are legit than more power to them.

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Big Mike View Post
The founder is Michael Patak, so yes Patak is involved

Online Futures Trading,online future trading,online future traders

My understanding is that the funding for TST traders that pass the Combine comes from the Patak partners (equity partners).

I will try and remember to ask how many people pass the Combine, but I would just guess it is very similar to the number of people that are overall successful with trading (a very small number).

I'm not coming to their defense or anything about charging fees, but I hope you don't expect them to work for free?

Whether or not it is valuable to you, naturally is only something each individual trader can determine for themselves.

How many times did you take the Combine yourself? I assume you did not pass, do you think that is because of TST or was it because of your trading performance during the Combine?

Mike

Mike if you, or anyone else is interested, here is the thread on ET I reference. Forums - Patak Trading

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dandxg View Post
Mike if you, or anyone else is interested, here is the thread on ET I reference. Forums - Patak Trading

Thx. I read through the thread briefly, it seems to confirm that TST is a serious prop firm. Everyone should do their own research and due diligence of course, but I believe the thread puts TST in good light from the experienced traders that commented on it. Whether or not a prop firm is a good fit for you, or whether or not their combines make sense for you, is something only you can answer...

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  #97 (permalink)
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Big Mike View Post
Thx. I read through the thread briefly, it seems to confirm that TST is a serious prop firm. Everyone should do their own research and due diligence of course, but I believe the thread puts TST in good light from the experienced traders that commented on it. Whether or not a prop firm is a good fit for you, or whether or not their combines make sense for you, is something only you can answer...

Mike

I read the first 10-11 pages and came away with the opposite opinion. As you said, everyone should do their own due dilligence, but just wanted to share my thoughts. Thanks for posting that thread dandxg.

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  #98 (permalink)
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I read the first 10-11 pages and came away with the opposite opinion. As you said, everyone should do their own due dilligence, but just wanted to share my thoughts. Thanks for posting that thread dandxg.

hehe, I read the last 10-15 pages.

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dandxg View Post

...

I don't think they should work for free, but I have a hard time believing that the cost they charge was just for admin and data storage. I don't buy that one.

...


I have yet to read the ET thread on TST/Patak, but my current point of view is that it is no problem to charge for the combines. I don't think either that the fee is for admin or data storage or whatever expenses they might have. I can not believe that it costs them that much to have these sim accounts running and checked as most of it must be automated.

However, that is not the point (even if they say so). IMO it's just that they are selling you a dream... the chance to become a funded prop trader. And people are willing to pay for that chance. There is demand for that and they meet the demand. It's just an additional income stream for them as I see it. Their requirements for a funded trader are pretty strict, so it's natural that most of the people don't pass the test.

The only thing that bothers me is that they say that even if all the formal requirements are met to become a funded trader, the scout team's review is still subjective and you can be asked to repeat the evaluation period. I hope that this is not designed as a loophole to screw people...

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  #100 (permalink)
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karoshiman View Post
The only thing that bothers me is that they say that even if all the formal requirements are met to become a funded trader, the scout team's review is still subjective and you can be asked to repeat the evaluation period. I hope that this is not designed as a loophole to screw people...

i have not taken the combine but from what i gather if you get to the point where you could become a funded trader and the scout team does review you, you would have to have met at least 2/3 of the goals. if they feel you need more time you still fall under their rules that state that you could have your money rolled over to another combine or refunded..

dont believe anything you hear and only half of what you see

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