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  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2009

    Default Is it really that easy to be a trader?

    I'm always really interested in stories like this, probably from the time I watched and loved the premise of the movie Limitless, the idea that if you only had the capital you could make it rich playing the markets.

    The thing is that when I hear stories like this there generally is a "gate keeper" character who recommends training, books, online or mail order courses or something, at which point I tend to believe its a "bait & switch", like those employment/job fairs at which there are actually no agencies or firms recruiting but lots of people actually trading and selling services or goods to the unemployed that are supposed to make them more attractive to employers.

    In this case I dont know if this was happening, it sounds like it to me, but its too vague. The idea that he could fore go the guys advice and instead learn the tricks of the trade from youtubes is interesting though. I know plenty of people who've believed that following the movie Nightcrawler featuring someone learning everything there was to know, for free, from the internet about film production, footage sales and media enterprise. Seriously. The guy was a vagrant at the start of that film. Its a good movie and I think has something to say about success and how people think about it or have valorised it as I think the guy is actually a psychopath. Anyway, a lot of people seem to have made the "take away" from the feature that you can learn anything in order to be a success for free from the web.

    So what do you think? Is it really that easy to become a trader? Or is this story as likely as one about doing scratch cards or winning the lottery?

    I do often find things like this really interesting but I've got to say that of all the books on the topic of trading I've bought 99% of them were absolute shill and did not tell you anything of value what so ever, there's even a few which I felt on a second read were elaborate stunts and tricks to get you to buy accounts with the banks that the authors worked for or had some sort of share or interest in.

    I know that that is a little different to currencies or trading in futures and more like simply buying a private pension portfolio though.

  2. #2
    Final Farewell
    Join Date
    Sep 2015


    You have to do your research and be skilled at reading trends. However, most people suck at trading from what i read.

  3. #3
    breaking out of my cocoon SearchingforPeace's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    9w8 sx/so
    EIE None


    I have a friend who was a currency trader for a few years. He is a ENTJ and did pretty well for a few years. Then started losing non stop, so that he quit and entered a different field and started a business and is very successful in that field.

    What happened to him was the field changed as high speed trading and algorithms took over. The field is much harder today.

    Worse, it directly fuels on greed. It needs new greedy suckers to think they can game the market. Con artists prey on them and get them to invest in various schemes that rip people off. Even sophisticated investors get ripped off, a la the derivative markets, which was depicted in the Big Short.

    All that being said, I recently met a young programmer, a clear INTP. He has no formal training, no college, but secured a high paying programming job with a Fortune 500 company by 21. He then started looking at financial markets and seeing patterns. He developed a program to use what he sees and makes $500k a year in his mid 20s, collecting a monthly licensing fee from people who use it.

    Anyway, he does not trade himself, as he has studied psychology and neurology and personality as part of his work and has decided it is better not trading.

    So, if a brilliant guy who makes a lot of money selling trading tools does not trade himself, one should wonder if it is a good thing before getting in.
    “Orthodoxy means not thinking--not needing to think. Orthodoxy is unconsciousness.”
    ― George Orwell, 1984

    “It is clear that thought is not free if the profession of certain opinions makes it impossible to earn a living. It is clear also that thought is not free if all the arguments on one side of a controversy are perpetually presented as attractively as possible, while the arguments on the other side can only be discovered by diligent search.”

    ― Bertrand Russell, Sceptical Essays

  4. #4
    Remember, Humanity. A Radiant Dawn's Avatar
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    Apr 2011
    379 sp/sx


    I'd agree with the others about exercising caution, there is a lot of crap out there that will get you.
    Always forward, never back!

    "I always love talking to people and hearing their story. People always have a good life story to tell ya know?"

    Today is the beginning, and tomorrow is the beginning of everything else.

    March on, life's too grand to let things get you down for long. It's a beautiful place and we're so blessed to be here.

    I am a person of fortune and I must seek my fortune.

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    Likes SurrealisticSlumbers liked this post

  5. #5


    The stories you often see and read about traders and their "American Dream" with women, yachts and luxury all around are not consistent with reality. It's just a way to rope naive people into quickly and efficiently gambling away their money, and most of them don't make it far.

    Trading takes patience, and it's going to be a very long time before you make any sort of profit, and even then that's assuming you're being careful and you know what you're doing.

    You could spend years building a big portofolio and it doesn't take much to lose it all overnight.

    That doesn't mean it can't work or that it isn't worth getting into it by any means, it's just that trading is completely different from what people actually think it is. Also trading full-time isn't viable until you have a good portofolio so don't just leave everything behind one day and decide you're going to become the wolf of Wall Street, the wheel doesn't spin like that.
    Johari | Nohari

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  6. #6
    Wake, See, Sing, Dance Cellmold's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012


    Replace trading with *insert aspect of life that one could presumably achieve at based on another's performance* and you get the broader issue here.

    It's quite easy to get into a lot of things, it's extremely hard to be successful at any of them. And you're then stuck between fear of likely failure and anger with oneself for not trying.

    An ongoing human issue. Turns out delusion and ignorance are the most powerful aids to self-resilience and so truth either has to take a back seat, or you are subject to certain realities.
    Any one know the answer to how one person can perceive accurately where another fails? What phenomena of human consciousness allows for a successful judgement in the moment or context as required?

    I definitely don't and I'm no closer to understanding it now than I was at 5.

    The rationalisation would be that my lack of understanding is it's own answer. Convenient.

    Which is what all these success stories share; convenience.
    'One of (Lucas) Cranach's masterpieces, discussed by (Joseph) Koerner, is in it's self-referentiality the perfect expression of left-hemisphere emptiness and a precursor of post-modernism. There is no longer anything to point to beyond, nothing Other, so it points pointlessly to itself.' - Iain McGilChrist

    Suppose a tree fell down, Pooh, when we were underneath it?"
    "Suppose it didn't," said Pooh, after careful thought.
    Piglet was comforted by this.
    - A.A. Milne.
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  7. #7


    Being a trader isn't hard, but it is not easy also. What I mean by easy? Well, the trading processes themselves. Anyone can do them and it's also easy to get started. What "hard" means? Knowing when to start and when to stop. As I said, it's easy to start and stop, but the timing is crucial for a successful trader. Timing is what differentiates the rich trader and the broke one. Timing is the only thing that a trader must perfect. And it doesn't matter if you're doing Investous CFDs trading, or usual asset trading, this applies to everyone.
    Last edited by PoisonJay; 12-30-2019 at 07:50 AM.

  8. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2011


    Calling yourself a trader is easy....hell, a lot of people out there trading call themselves traders.
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  9. #9


    40% of day traders are out within a month since they shot their load and lost (1). 90%+ are out in five years (1). This study analyzed 150,000 day traders over 14 years.

    Anyone can become a day trader but becoming a successful day trader, particularly a long term one, is extremely difficult. It's a combination of intelligence, the ability to analyze and capitalize on patterns, high risk tolerance and superhuman ability to handle stress. With day trading, you don't have to be knowledgeable about current events, economics or the global political climate since you're in and out the same day, premised on trading patterns. That said, day traders can get raped during flash crashes.


  10. #10
    Member ???'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2019
    ? None


    The way I see it is day trading is about knowing the whims of the market. If you can get positive and negative information first and trade based on that momentum, you can make money off the reactionary traders. But it's not a proper way to invest, since this is just a ploy to take money from people that are bad traders.

    The proper way to invest is value investing probably, since it helps a company grow long-term with your money and if the company does well, you deserve a profit for helping it to happen and hopefully improving the overall wealth of the economy in some way.
    We are Bob.

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