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
Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity. ~ Seneca
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.
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!
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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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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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..
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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