One of the great things about trading is that it can offer something of value to almost everyone, regardless of age or ambitions.
For some, it may be no more than a convenient way to generate a useful side income, to put themselves through college, pay down some debts, or fund exciting travel to fascinating destinations.
For others, trading becomes an all-consuming passion, a full-time occupation, and a lifetime study. It can put someone squarely on the path to a substantial income, high social status, and significant wealth.
While all this is good, the joy of trading is not found merely in its financial rewards, as wonderful as these can be.
For many retirees, like Sunny Decker, the attraction to the markets lies more in the satisfaction of acquiring a new skill late in life, along with the intellectual stimulation that it provides.
Whether he’s at home in Sarasota, Florida, or touring the country in his motorcoach, this energetic 89-year-old still trades every day he can.
Having sold a successful software business after 18 years, his love for trading is not so much the money as it is the regular mental challenge that Sunny credits with helping maintain his energy and zest for life.
Getting started in trading with any prospect of success requires learning a range of new and non-intuitive skills, including fundamental and technical analysis, chart patterns, indicators, along with rigorous risk management.
And, perhaps most importantly, trading success demands a disciplined, methodical, and unemotional approach.
So, although it’s by no means necessary, it’s perhaps not surprising that many retirees with a background in engineering or other technical professions have taken to trading like the proverbial ducks to water. And as the retired owner of a successful software business, Sunny certainly felt at home right away.
Sunny has learned that good traders need much more than just abstract analytical or project management skills. For example, many popular and highly-profitable market patterns such as the “supernova,” and the “stair-stepper,” require the action of what is commonly known as a “catalyst” to set the stock’s price moving in the right direction.
“I wanted to find a reliable method for day trading options before the market opened.”
A catalyst may be as simple as the publication of a company’s quarterly earnings or an announcement that it just won a major new contract. On the other hand, stock prices can also move sharply in reaction to external news events as reported on television and in newspapers, financial and business websites, social media, and influential blogs.
Many kinds of news stories can impact different stocks; and war, natural disasters, civil disturbances, public health emergencies, and extreme weather events may all be relevant to the stocks on a trader’s watchlist.
Although significant catalysts don’t happen every day, less dramatic events such as elections and technological breakthroughs of one kind or another can also have their impact on stock prices. And this is why savvy traders, allocate a substantial proportion of their day to the diligent monitoring of reliable, trusted news sources.
This need to keep up with daily events in politics and finance around the world creates a powerful sense of engagement and involvement in people who might otherwise feel isolated and maybe even abandoned by society.
“I’m too old to be an investor,” admits 89-year-old Sunny, “So I mainly day trade, as many as 12 trades in one day. Trading is very invigorating and helps keep me young!”
“I’m too old to be an investor, so I mainly day trade. As many as 12 trades in one day. Trading is very invigorating and helps keep me young!”
As many others have discovered, even Sunny’s intense style of trading doesn’t mean being tied to a screen for hours every day. Nowadays, there are ways more passive traders can earn an attractive side income.
Sunny often enjoys hitting the road in his upscale motorcoach. Sometimes he travels for weeks at a time. To his delight, he’s had relatively few problems trading on the move. He uses a desk in his motorhome along with a T-Mobile internet connection to stay on top of the action.
No boss, no commute, and no customers or clients to appease: With all these benefits, it’s easy to understand why trading could be considered the ultimate lifestyle business, and why it has such a powerful appeal to people of all ages.
Still, as much as he loves the freedom of trading while traveling, Sunny remains as disciplined and conscientious as he was during his 18-year stint as president of his software company.
He says it was the timeliness of the information provided, and the accuracy with which the recommended trades played out, that persuaded him to sign up with Daily Profit Machine for his trading education.
“I wanted to find a reliable method for day trading options before the market opened,” explains Sunny, “and I’ve found it to be very accurate. The best of all.”
Although money is not Sunny’s primary motivation, his methodical approach has produced consistent results that would be the envy of many an ambitious younger trader.
The key to Sunny’s success has been his determination to exit trades when they hit his profit target. He also resists the temptation to get greedy or to stay in losing trades, hoping they’ll turn around.
“Most times I close the same day,” he explains, “but at times I sell the following day. Since January 2nd, I have made 14 trades (1 per day) and all have been winners. My profits have ranged from a low of 11% to a high of 89%.”
“Since January 2nd, I have made 14 trades (1 per day) and all have been winners. My profits have ranged from a low of 11% to a high of 89%.”
No doubt Sunny has also had and will have his fair share of losses. However, winning runs like the one he recently experienced, can grow an account at a spectacular speed if needed.
And in this way, Sunny should be an example and inspiration to all traders – no matter what motivation brought them to the markets.
As Sunny sums it all up, in a characteristically straightforward manner, “Each day I place a trade, set a target, and make money. It doesn’t get any better than that!”
It sounds great, for sure. But, of course, it’s not the position in which most beginners find themselves.
And, as strange as it may sound, for most new traders, not having much money is probably a good thing.
For the truth is, that far from it being a burdensome restriction, there can be significant advantages to starting with a small trading account.
First and most importantly, having limited funds will force you to use self-discipline and sound risk management if you want to stay in the market.
There are good reasons, for example, why the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) requires those who wish to place more than three day-trades a week on margin must maintain a minimum account balance of at least $25,000.
This so-called Pattern Day Trader (PDT) rule is often resented as an unjustified restriction on individuals’ right to trade as they wish, but in fact, it merely embodies the sound advice any competent trading mentor would give to a newcomer.
Trading on margin, in other words, using money borrowed from a broker, is a risky move for anyone, and not recommended for small account holders who, without the PDT rule, might be tempted to gamble with up to four, five, or even six times the amount of cash they have on hand.
Even without the added risk of margin trading, the PDT rule also demonstrates the danger of overtrading that’s a big problem for so many newcomers to the market.
If you start with a lavishly-funded trading account, it’s hard to avoid the feeling, albeit that you wouldn’t dream of saying it, “That there’s plenty more where that came from.”
Secure in the knowledge that even a substantial loss will not prevent you from continuing to trade, yet impatient for results, it’s all too tempting to chase the market.
That’s to say, to go looking for trades in the least promising sectors, to neglect your basic research, and to take large positions on less than optimal setups.
“I’ve destroyed three 401Ks in my lifetime. I just want to be able to spend quality time with my daughter and be there for her after school when my wife is working out of town.”
New traders like Chicagoan Jeremy Bell, who ‘s just getting started with a $3,000 account, can be compelled to take only the very best opportunities that come along.
And when a single bad trade can take out a significant percentage of your trading funds, or perhaps even blow up your account altogether, it is, of course, imperative that you exercise excellent risk management.
Risk management involves careful and conservative position sizing, as well as strict adherence to stop losses and profit targets. These are crucial skills and emotional controls that’ll continue to serve you well as your account grows.
Even though he’s new to trading, Jeremy has already absorbed these lessons well, and under the guidance of Jeff Williams at Profit Prism, he’s been focusing his attention on the “supernovas” that traders consider highly-prized chart patterns.
In essence, a supernova happens when a stock, often though not always a penny stock, which has perhaps been trending gradually upwards, suddenly explodes into very rapid growth.
Generally, these events occur on news events, such as a big government contract, merger, or acquisition. In other words, events that can favorably impact the prospects of a company with promising fundamentals.
Traders who have these kinds of companies on their watchlists and have learned to spot the signs of a breakout can frequently realize gains of double or even triple digits in a matter of days.
So it’s not surprising that Jeremy says, “Profit Prism seems best for the trader with a small account. Our definitions of “small” are quite different. LOL. $3,000 is more my speed, not $50k, 100k, or 200k. So, at times, I feel out of my league.”
“Profit Prism seems best for the trader with a small account. Our definitions of “small” are quite different. LOL. $3,000 is more my speed, not $50k, 100k, or 200k. So, at times, I feel out of my league.”
In truth, though, Jeremy doesn’t need to feel like that. As we have noted, there are very sound reasons for starting small. But he has, in any case, adopted a simple, yet effective way of compensating for any restrictions he might encounter.
When following trades in the Profit Prism trading room, Jeremy takes a position one-tenth of the size of Jeff’s. Taking this approach reduces his dollar return and risk to allow for the relative size of his account, but his percentage of profits or losses can be close to identical.
In practice, the returns are not precisely the same because Jeremy still holds down a day job, and sometimes there’s a lapse of time between his and Jeff Williams’ entries and exits.
“My first trade was AXXA [Exxe Group Inc.] I had no idea what I was doing. I was just following Jeff Williams. In one day, out the next. Up 20%! It felt good.”
Despite that small caveat, Jeremy has enjoyed some immediate success.
“My first trade was AXXA [Exxe Group Inc.],” he recalls, “I had no idea what I was doing. I was just following Jeff Williams. In one day, out the next. Up 20%! It felt good.”
Jeremy is now certain that with Profit Prism, he has found the expert mentorship he needs to successfully trade his small account. Furthermore, he’s determined to put as much time and effort as possible, as allowed by his other work commitments, into learning to trade.
His approach, however, will remain cautious: he hasn’t forgotten losing three 401(k) accounts that were earmarked for his retirement.
Nevertheless, it’s this sensible attitude, along with a great mentor, that’s giving him an excellent shot at repairing his finances and, most importantly, achieving his primary goal of spending more quality time with his loving wife and daughter.
It’s easy to see why so many new traders believe that their success will depend on mastering a particular trading method or instrument.
It’s often said, for example, that options are the perfect way to grow a small account quickly.
Why? Well, because options can be bought for far less than the price of the underlying stock, and their volatility makes triple-digit percentage returns a common occurrence.
And, as a matter of fact, many new traders have indeed enjoyed spectacular success (and profits) with options.
Sure, there are strong arguments in their favor, but the truth is, neither options nor any other instrument is right for every trader.
You’ll find that the most successful traders are not necessarily those with an encyclopedic knowledge of every possible instrument, setup, or chart indicator.
The most successful traders are those who’ve found a system with which they are comfortable. A system that makes sense to them on an almost instinctive level.
Moreover, these exceptional traders have consistently applied the system they use within a comprehensive trading plan and rules for risk management.
So, for example, there are wealthy traders who specialize in options, and then, there are those who make fortunes in penny stocks.
Some people love to short the market and there are those who’ll only take long positions on potential breakouts.
There are also traders who rely exclusively on Fibonacci numbers and still others who swear by Bollinger Bands.
Although there are many market-tested methodologies, they don’t matter nearly so much as the trader’s attitude and determination to stick to the method that has worked for them.
Matt Campbell of Tampa, Florida, for example, is an experienced trader who had lost money on options and came to Jeff Williams’ Profit Prism Platinum looking for an alternative.
He lost money before, not because he was reckless, or poorly informed; it was just that options were not the right instrument for him.
And that’s why Matt’s breakthrough came as soon as he realized that small-cap stocks were a perfect fit for his personality, income goals, and trading style.
“I wanted a trading room with small-cap stock trading ideas. Profit Prism Platinum has lots of stock ideas all day with experienced traders in control of the room all day.”
“Small-cap” stocks are generally defined as shares of companies that have a total market capitalization (share price multiplied by the number of shares in circulation) of between $250 million and $2 billion.
Although most small-caps are small companies, maybe even startups, it doesn’t mean that their share price is low.
So small-cap stocks are not the same, and certainly not as risky, as the so-called “penny stocks” that are frequently traded off-exchange and are all too often the subject of “pump and dump” scams.
That said, small-cap stocks are generally more volatile than those of giant blue-chip corporations. This is because their trading volumes are typically lower, and, as smaller companies, their stock price is more likely to move sharply in response to news events.
Wall Street is very adept at “pricing in” major news events for blue-chip stocks, but it’s much less interested in small caps. And because of this, there’s a wealth of opportunities for smaller, independent traders who know what to look for.
Fortunately, small-cap stocks tend to show certain giveaway signs before a big move in price, and knowing how to spot just a few of these on a chart can be enough to drive a long and successful trading career.
So for Matt, working with Jeff Williams in the Profit Prism Platinum trading room has been a revelation. “Jeff teaches a simple pattern that people with very little experience can implement on ETRADE, TDA, etc.”
“He makes it very simple and shows people where to stop and where to add. Jeff trades as if he is a new trader, which is a huge help to people like me,” explains Matt.
With Jeff’s guidance, he now focuses on consistently trading the same few small-cap patterns every day the markets are open.
“I wanted to trade stocks and small caps, not options. I’ve lost money on options in the past, but I’ve made a nice six-figure income for 3 years trading the same patterns in small caps.”
For traders who are mesmerized with chart intricacies and complicated indicators, it may seem unexciting, but there’s never a shortage of small-cap trades. As Matt puts it, not immodestly, he’s had too many winners to be able to single one out for special mention.
Matt’s approach is to bank consistent profits rather than shooting for the moon, and although small-caps may not offer the spectacular returns of some options trades, they do provide a steady flow of profitable set-ups.
In a single recent trading day, for example, Matt scored wins on Ascena Retail (ASNA), Agile Therapeutics (AGRX), and Westwater Resources (WWR). And that day was not unusual at all.
“Jeff Williams follows a lot of the same patterns day in and day out. He’s a huge benefit because he’s personally in the trading room every day.”
After six years in the markets, Matt’s systematic approach allows him to trade full-time, but it’s the lifestyle rather than a fascination with the technical intricacies of charts and indicators that truly motivates him.
His dedication to a simple trading style has earned him a six-figure annual income during the last three years. The money is excellent, but above all, Matt relishes the freedom and independence of being a solo trader.
“I work for myself and don’t have to work for anyone”, says Matt, “Who wouldn’t want that?”
Having more freedom and independence is a goal that many people share. And except for his ambitious income targets, Matt’s philosophy can be applied by almost any trader, no matter which instruments they favor.
“My goal is the same every day,” he says, “Be disciplined, patient, and learn. Make $1,000 to $3,000 every day. It’s that simple.”
$1,000 to $3,000 a day is a substantial amount of money for anyone to think about, let alone a small-account trader. But Matt understands the amazing compounding power of consistent, daily application.
With a mindset like this, along with expert mentorship from Jeff Williams and Profit Prism Platinum, Matt’s undoubtedly destined for even greater success in the long term.