“If you can trade like a hedge fund without investing in one, you can replicate their big wins without having to pay their huge fees.” – James Altucher
In the first part of the article in this series, I mentioned that Mr. Caleb (a former trainee), who’s found his edge in his market, was interviewed. He’s interesting facts to reveal about trading, plus how he makes his money from the markets. Here we go:
Analyst75: What motivated you to get trained for trading in the first place?
Caleb: I was interested in trading because of its benefits. When I was introduced to a seminar, I attended it with a friend. I’ve to say that the seminar was a disaster to me, because all they could say was “you can make so-so amount of money,” “you can become financially free,” and all those marketing stuff. They didn’t show how that could be done, except to sell something they believed would work. Such was most of the seminars – useless. So I decided to explore other options. When I came across my former coach, I was encouraged again, but for a one-on-one training at that time.
Analyst75: What did you learn during the training?
Caleb: The training was an eye opener, because I was taught how the markets really work, plus trading principles that are useful. It was different than the get-rich-quickly stuff that sells you something and goes away. After the training, I practiced more and more and more. With some viable modification, here I am.
Analyst75: How do you determine when to buy and when to sell?
Caleb: I’m a systematic trader, with a large amount of discretion, however. I don’t trade flat markets, which means my candidates are usually trending markets. I follow the trend, using MACD and EMA to determine a major bias on a particular market, especially in the medium-term. I prefer hourly charts because they aren’t too big or too small in terms of time horizon. Then I use economic news/fundamental figures to pinpoint entry points. I trade mostly news that pushes the market in the direction of the dominant bias, for this comes with higher accuracy. Needless to say, some news releases don’t move the markets: I simply ignore those. On rare occasions, I trade news that pushes the market massively against the trend. This is where discretion comes in. In some cases, price action will reveal that an existing trend has reached maturity, and is getting tired.
Analyst75: What do you stops and targets look like?
Caleb: My stops range from 30 to 100 pips. I don’t set take profits unless I’ll be away from the markets for several days. In that case, my stop would be a minimum of 200 pips. Sometimes, I sustain small losses for weeks, but I’m happy as long as the losses are kept small. Huge moves in my favor often wipe those small losses away, giving me decent profits over time.
Analyst75: How long do you hold onto an open trade?
Caleb: I hold onto a trade as long as the market goes in my favor. A trend may last longer than most people think and bigger profits are present in sustained trending movements. When a trade fails to develop in the way I previously think, I’m quickly out! Sometimes, I don’t even wait for my stop to be hit before I quit a trade. This doesn’t mean I exit a trade on noises only, as mere noises would cause transient movements against my direction, this is where a little discretion helps.
Analyst75: How do you feel when a trade goes against you?
Caleb: It’s merely one of those normal things – as long as you keep the losses small. I see losses as part of business. Most business would have periods of losses, slow growth, etc. Why should trading be different? A losing streak is a good indicator that a winning streak is around the corner; and that helps me keep my chin up. I know that when I lose, some winning trades would soon materialize.
Analyst75: How do you feel when you win a trade?
Caleb: Normally I feel great. I feel satisfied whenever I’m in a winning streak. That’s part of the beauty of trading.
Analyst75: What are your favorite pairs?
Caleb: EURUSD, AUDUSD and USDJPY. To me, they’re easily predictable.
Analyst75: Do you see yourself teaching others to become successful at trading?
Caleb: Nope. I’m not good at teaching/coaching, and I don’t think I’ll ever become a coach. If there’s anybody who wants to learn trading, they’ll have to find a good coach to show them the way.
Analyst75: Do you believe in trading robots?
Caleb: Robots are good, but a little discretion helps good traders. Robots follow strict rules, which may bring disaster when the market conditions are at variance with the rules. Most trading systems are rubbish, and when programmed, they produce useless robots which might accelerate your bankruptcy. Artificial intelligence is garbage in, garbage out.
Analyst75: Do you think you might change your trading method in future, applying some flexibility?
Caleb: No-one can become a master trader overnight. Anyone can learn how to buy and sell, but trading mastery takes time. In a few days, you can learn driving, but that doesn’t make you an experienced driver. A person who’s just learned how to drive might not be able to handle some challenges that a driver has to face, like driving in all weather conditions. Trading is no different. If I discover that a particular rule might improve my trading results, I’d first try it in a simulated mode for 4 – 6 months. If the results are satisfactory, I make the rule part of my trading strategy.
Analyst75: Most members of the public fear trading. They even discourage others from trading. What do you think about this issue?
Caleb: People fear the unknown. Yes, they’re scared of what they don’t know, including what they think they know, but which they don’t really know. A novice may discourage other novices because they think they know somebody who lost their money in the markets, and so the losses in other areas of life would be an exception or a normal thing to them. Only a loss in trading is what they think is abnormal. I think the right mindset is to determine to succeed where most others fail, like trading.
Analyst75: How do you combine your day job with trading?
Caleb: I trade mostly in the evenings when I get back home from work: before I sleep. I spend less than 5 hours per week on trading. So, it’s pretty easy for me to trade while keeping my day job.
Analyst75: As far as trading is concerned, what’s your plan for the future?
Caleb: I want to be the best trader I can be. I want to be the best trader in my country. I like the joy of financial freedom trading brings and I’d like to live a quiet life in a natural environment, away from the city, where there’s too much noise. I’ll soon abandon my day job to become a full-time trader, living the kind of life I really want.
Analyst75: Would you like one of your children to be a trader in future?
Caleb: I believe each child is unique, created by the Providence to fulfill a specific destiny. This might not be trading in most cases. I’d be happy if a child of mine becomes a trader, but if they choose another course of life, I’d be happy too as long as they don’t have “I beg to apply” mentality. Becoming a trader isn’t by force; it’s by choice, although it’s a good vehicle for financial freedom. One thing I’ll surely do is that, I’ll inculcate the spirit of self-reliance and self-dependence into them as early as possible. Our parents don’t show us the way to be self-sufficient. They make a big mistake just by telling us to go to school and look for jobs, which to me, isn’t the best way of life. It’s a horrendous thing to be at the mercy of a boss. There’s a vast difference between living and existing. You’ll need to choose for yourself.
Analyst 75: Do you have any advice for traders?
Caleb: When it comes to Forex trading, patience is a virtue. Patience pays a lot. Traders should be optimistic and look forward to better trading results, even in the face of a current challenge. When you’re using a good system and facing a temporary period of loss, always look forward to a period of profit, which is around the corner.
Analyst 75: Thank you Mr. Caleb, for this great interview.
This interview is concluded with a poem-like advice from an astute female trader:
I See You
I see you.
I see your focus, and I can picture what this will mean for your trading future.
I see your trading scars, and I know that some of them came close to breaking your heart.
I see your hope for the future, and I’m in awe of your potential.
I see your struggle, and I know that, like a bird pecking out of an egg, the struggle will make you strong.
I see your choices, and I recognise how you are honouring your vision.
I see your joy as you courageously take one more step and learn a bit more about the markets.
I see your deep desire to do more, be more and have more.
I see a trader.
I see you.
Let's make 2016 a terrific year of triumph.” - Louise Bedford (Source: Tradinggame.com.au)