I wish someone would have beat the above statement into my head with a two-by-four. In the beginning I was convinced that you could "earn while you learn" and that if I paid big $$$ surely I would be successful. Boy was I wrong........$30 K wrong.
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It's human nature. It's natural to want to travel the path of least resistance. As a new trader, who knows little about the market, you want to learn about this new concept. But, where to start? The natural tendency is to go to those who claim they have experience. But there are 100's of these guys out there touting their expertise at a substantial price. What's a newbie to do? Here's an idea, get on a trading forum and ask people's opinions! That is exactly the purpose of a forum. So, yes 'Have you heard of XYZ?', 'What do yo think about them'?, 'Are they worth my hard earned $2995'
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This has been my experience also. IMO a key element to succeed in this field is to find a framework that works for your tolerances and lifestyle. This doesn't come without considerable diligence in research, testing, analysis and commitment, part of that commitment is also to back yourself with a plan, executed in the market with real funds on the line. I've performed many many hours to simulation but that just doesn't cut it until you can monitor and analyse the results from live trading.
I've paid and attended many courses, bought a lot of systems and believe I've seen a pretty broad range of what's on offer out there and until I took components of what I'd seen, quantitively tested those for validity, integrated those that made the cut and developed my own system(s), then applied those to the market did it come together for me. Only then did I realize just how much work is really involved to make this work for me.
Yes, but is that help worth $7500.00? I will have to agree Seeker, but I have paid quite a bit at times for those little nuggets of truth. In all honesty I have found that the best stuff I have learned has been from $50 e-books and free stuff I have found on this forum. I must confess, I always assumed (stupidly) that those programs and rooms would give me confidence; they did not.
I have also realized that I am like Scarface (the move): "who do I trust????? me!!!!! I find my losses are much more palatable when the mistake is mine rather than a bad room call.
There are "markers" that I've identified similar to the list of cautions previously mentioned by Mike.
One of the things I hear most consistently from other traders is the "time" variable. Most of them report a 3-5 year learning curve before they entered into a break even + / profitable period of their careers. I don't know very many who opened an account and earned a living 6 months later. It's interesting to me that this falls in line with the "10,000 hour rule" you hear about with any type of proficiency.
I've also found that most vendors won't address losses and losing streaks. Beware the ones that use the word "compounding" in their presentations, ie, how quickly you can go from $10,000 to $100,000 in the account. It's the vendors that address things from the other direction that are worth their salt. I remember the first guy who spoke to me about Monte Carlo analyses, Average Draw Down, Max Draw Down, etc. My head nearly exploded. Then I read a book called "The Trading Game" by Ryan Jones where he unpacked 2 ideas that taught traders when to go from a live trading to a simulated trading account so as not to blow out an entire account. I call it his "Parachute" techniques. Vendors that don't tell you what to do/how to identify when to pull the "parachute" are usually worth avoiding.
Most vendors with an "arrow" indicator have almost never panned out for me. I've learned that in a room full of 10 people, with the same tools, there will be 10 different rule sets and personalities. It can be done, but authors like Richard Weissman point out that every trader has a "natural center of gravity" and is what their mother said all along, "very special". :-)
Even Gann noted this. He said once that lawyers and doctors had to go to school for substantial amounts of time before they could be considered lawyers and doctors - but people who have the physical means "money" assume themselves to be traders by the nature of their wealth. I believe that brokers have some culpability in this sense and should have as others have noted on this post a type of "driver's test" prior to trading live.
Just giving someone a simulated account and telling them to trade a simple system for 1 week (like a 5/20 SMA cross) regardless of results will tell you about a trader's readiness. If someone can't follow a simple 3 rule cross-entry-exit method (with nothing on the line) they're not ready to learn anything anyone has to teach.
Great posts here. I wish I'd read ones like these early on...
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