Introducing myself and a few questions for a returning trader...


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Hello all and thank you for investing your time in making this site so helpful!!

I'm looking to return to trading as I have a fair amount of free time during my typical working week.

A little background about my short career trading: Back in early 2004 I got introduced to a distant relative who offered me the opportunity of joining him at a prop house in the London financial district. I'd just finished my degree in Advertising / Graphic design and I'd spent the last 10 moths spraying engines for Perkins / Caterpillar so I had no financial background whatsoever!!
After passing a number of tests and interviews I joined the trainee program and soon found myself on the simulator scalping Eurostoxx. I shadowed my relative as I found out later that his reputation as one of the biggest traders in the Paris CAC40 pit became very evident... So I became pretty well trained as a technical trader and my charting skills excelled enough for other traders to ask me for help on a regular basis. I went live within 2 weeks and I soon started increasing size and hitting my 10 x size target + costs before lunch and having the rest of the day off.... oh the glory days!!!

I traded until December 2005 and during that time my markets included Brent Crude, Eurostoxx and mainly trading Bund Bobl Shatz Futures. Final 8 months I spent trading the Bund outright which was lively to say the least!!! Yes this was during the time of "The Flipper" AKA Paul Rotter and his manipulating ways..... Thankfully I didn't do my **** too much, the rest of the floor was trying to make money on the Bobl spread I just rode his massive manipulation of the Bund to make my ticks.

Anyway July 7th underground bombs happened and soon after that I was asked to leave due to huge losses and my immature attitude to the job and my indulgences to the glamorous side of being a trader..... I was 24 at the time and screwing it all up is my huge regret..... boo hoo eh??!!!

So why come back now??? Well I've always kept an eye on the markets and my love for it never ceased.... Those of you who trade know its a disease you're stuck with for life!! I now own an online retail business which literally runs itself leaving me most of the day to do as I will. I've spent many weeks looking at various trading platforms and I've opened a demo account at IG and also a live account at Plus500 just to dip my toe in the water and re-affirm some routine to my morning.

Back in London we used Trading Technologies X-Trader Pro with CQG charting software, this was on a glitchy broadband service that often froze!! I had a huge CRT Monitor for X-trader and 2 15" flat screens for my charts costing me a total £3000 per month for my desk.

So I now seek advice as to what platform you guys would recommend?? I've looked at X-trader and I'm not spending £600 p/m so thats ruled itself out for me. I suppose I'd better explain what I plan to trade... that would help eh??

I'd like to trade Bund Futures outright again as but also I'd like to look at using Options. Also some longer term stock purchases would be an advantage (Swing trading). I'd like a package that include a charting application as in depth as CQG but one that can recognise charting patterns too (wish we had these 10yrs ago??!!)

I've put aside £2k to trade with but I'm planning on budgeting £500 per quarter for the first 12 months just to keep some discipline. If I blow the first £500 in 2 weeks of my first quarter then tough love..... its back to the sim until the next quarter starts. Oh so yes a platform with a good simulator and real time data feeds for my charts etc.....

I'm not looking to make a living off this which you've no doubt guessed by my £2k investment but I definitely want to throw myself back into the love of researching fundamentals and chart analysis.

Also any links to forums apart from this one would be helpful, we never had the luxury of talking to other traders online and sharing opinions back then but I'd like to get more involved and hopefully find traders local to me who I can chat to??

My apologies for the long intro but I thought I'd better explain my full story so hopefully I get better responses than If I'd just asked "Which platform will make me rich??" lol.

I look forward to any advice.... many thanks.

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