trading from home/on the side for how long?

royal_victor

Newbie
1 0
Hi all,

a quick intro of myself to the group. I would appreciate your views, but first things first.

In a nutshell, I am trading on the side at the moment. My regular job which pays the bills and interesting is in research with a trading company, but we are physical traders and not prop traders and given the nature of our business we are natural hedgers in the agri futures market. So I picked up the tricks of the trade since I started, rolling hedges, placing them on the screen or with brokers, covering FX exposure and so forth. Although I am in research, we are a tiny team and I help out on the desk of course. One thing it has taught me is to eliminate the thought about money: to wholly detach myself from monetary aspect of buying or selling a few lots for a colleague who has to hedge and not thinking about the actual money involved. A stark comparison: during my days at university, I briefly traded grain futures. Quite a few sleepless nights I had. Why? (a) I had no idea what I was doing so I now know looking back and (b) my account was ridiculously small compared to my one lot I was sporting.

I always loved the markets, esp. from an analytical point of view. But the fun of course starts when you put money on the line. That I have been doing now for the past half year. With a 20k account and keeping things small, my set-up is quite simple. A little web based window in the corner at work keeps me posted with bid/ask while going after my daily chores. I know at what levels I want to be a buyer, at what a seller, when to stay flat. My preparation I do between 6 and 7AM before the market opens. Same in the evenings. Quick recap whether any news might be relevant to my outlook or position. This is pretty much the way we trade futures in our own market in the office. Throughout the day I keep watching my market, how we are doing. With no bad-ass charting kit at hand, I only follow bid/ask and market depth.

With a small position size I know my risk. Position sizing at 1% of my equity, so I am very comfortable with the exposure. I have my ups and downs and learning from it. Overall my balance is up, so I am not wasting my time. In fact I love it! And absolutely so! To avoid any kind of conflict of interest, I am doing fixed income only (futures that is) which are not related to the nature of our business. And I love the intellectual challenge, learning and understanding their sensitivities to current affairs, macro news etc etc.

Being truthful to myself, I always wanted to be a local, trading my own account not someone else's. (My dream at uni was become an exchange member on the floor, that's before I visited the pits and learned that they were on their way out.)
And that I do now, albeit in a small way and quite impossible to earn a living from it. And in an surprising way, I am glad I got the exposure our commodity market which has taught me a great deal. My day job to keep me afloat. But ultimately, I am hoping to turn this into a professional venture. My current plan is not to change my set-up as I am still learning and to build my my account size both with profits of course but also with windfall gains such as bonus money.

There is no such thing as a quick fortune, so I am patient and want to keep my private venture going for the next few years and then to see whether I should make the jump into trading full time.

I don't want to take costly short cuts but at the same time do not want to waste time either. Where or how would would one strike a balance? If I were to join an arcade for example in a few years down the line, I'd do it for two reasons if I were to do it full time: (a) to get leverage. I'd still be trading my own funds but want some additional backing with some sort of PnL sharing. (b) for banter and exchanging with other traders not to lead a solitary existence (not my thing).

How many turned-pro traders are at prop firms or arcades in their late 30s or early 40s (my age bracket if I keep trading on the side for 5 more years for example)? As far as I am concerned, age does not matter to me. Whether I am 30, 40 or 50 and keep making good money by then. But how do prop trading venues look at it? Or should I jump into the cold water sooner than later?

Your thoughts'd be most welcome.

Thanks,

V
 

lawrence-lugar

Active member
140 22
Man, you type long...get to the point -- no offense.
Reading all that felt like reading a book.
Traders, or i am...am a bottom line kind of guy.

I just read the last couple of sentences basically.
But yeah...you gotta just jump in in life -- if that answers your question...:eek:
 

timsk

Legendary member
7,386 2,167
Hi V,
Welcome to T2W.

I don't share l-l's criticism of your opening post at all. In fact, I wish more members would provide the level of detail that you have. After all, this is a discussion forum where such things matter. Those that are only interested in vacuous sound bites are catered for by Facebook and Twitter!

I'm afraid I'm not in a position to answer your question, not least because I've never traded at a prop' firm or arcade. That said, for what it's worth, it sounds to me as if you've got your head properly screwed on and are going about things in the best way possible. I hope you stick around and contribute to the site with updates about your progress, as I'm sure the majority of members will be happy to take the time to read how you get on.
;)

Tim.
 

winny

Junior member
11 0
Man, you type long...get to the point -- no offense.
Reading all that felt like reading a book.
Traders, or i am...am a bottom line kind of guy.

I just read the last couple of sentences basically.
But yeah...you gotta just jump in in life -- if that answers your question...:eek:
:LOL:


Hi all,

a quick intro of myself to the group. I would appreciate your views, but first things first.

In a nutshell, I am trading on the side at the moment. My regular job which pays the bills and interesting is in research with a trading company, but we are physical traders and not prop traders and given the nature of our business we are natural hedgers in the agri futures market. So I picked up the tricks of the trade since I started, rolling hedges, placing them on the screen or with brokers, covering FX exposure and so forth. Although I am in research, we are a tiny team and I help out on the desk of course. One thing it has taught me is to eliminate the thought about money: to wholly detach myself from monetary aspect of buying or selling a few lots for a colleague who has to hedge and not thinking about the actual money involved. A stark comparison: during my days at university, I briefly traded grain futures. Quite a few sleepless nights I had. Why? (a) I had no idea what I was doing so I now know looking back and (b) my account was ridiculously small compared to my one lot I was sporting.

I always loved the markets, esp. from an analytical point of view. But the fun of course starts when you put money on the line. That I have been doing now for the past half year. With a 20k account and keeping things small, my set-up is quite simple. A little web based window in the corner at work keeps me posted with bid/ask while going after my daily chores. I know at what levels I want to be a buyer, at what a seller, when to stay flat. My preparation I do between 6 and 7AM before the market opens. Same in the evenings. Quick recap whether any news might be relevant to my outlook or position. This is pretty much the way we trade futures in our own market in the office. Throughout the day I keep watching my market, how we are doing. With no bad-ass charting kit at hand, I only follow bid/ask and market depth.

With a small position size I know my risk. Position sizing at 1% of my equity, so I am very comfortable with the exposure. I have my ups and downs and learning from it. Overall my balance is up, so I am not wasting my time. In fact I love it! And absolutely so! To avoid any kind of conflict of interest, I am doing fixed income only (futures that is) which are not related to the nature of our business. And I love the intellectual challenge, learning and understanding their sensitivities to current affairs, macro news etc etc.

Being truthful to myself, I always wanted to be a local, trading my own account not someone else's. (My dream at uni was become an exchange member on the floor, that's before I visited the pits and learned that they were on their way out.)
And that I do now, albeit in a small way and quite impossible to earn a living from it. And in an surprising way, I am glad I got the exposure our commodity market which has taught me a great deal. My day job to keep me afloat. But ultimately, I am hoping to turn this into a professional venture. My current plan is not to change my set-up as I am still learning and to build my my account size both with profits of course but also with windfall gains such as bonus money.

There is no such thing as a quick fortune, so I am patient and want to keep my private venture going for the next few years and then to see whether I should make the jump into trading full time.

I don't want to take costly short cuts but at the same time do not want to waste time either. Where or how would would one strike a balance? If I were to join an arcade for example in a few years down the line, I'd do it for two reasons if I were to do it full time: (a) to get leverage. I'd still be trading my own funds but want some additional backing with some sort of PnL sharing. (b) for banter and exchanging with other traders not to lead a solitary existence (not my thing).

How many turned-pro traders are at prop firms or arcades in their late 30s or early 40s (my age bracket if I keep trading on the side for 5 more years for example)? As far as I am concerned, age does not matter to me. Whether I am 30, 40 or 50 and keep making good money by then. But how do prop trading venues look at it? Or should I jump into the cold water sooner than later?

Your thoughts'd be most welcome.

Thanks,

V
what i can suggest is every trader have his/her own trading style . if you are part-time trader, i suggest to start with small amount to start and test . also make sure make loss setting is on
 
Last edited by a moderator:

davidcraigson

Member
70 3
I think it all comes down to when you feel comfortable that you can confidently make the trades. If you can't, and you don't instinctively know what you are doing..... most likely keep it small until then.
 

verial

Member
53 4
I was trading for 5 years (position trading) before I decided to get serious.

In my first couple months of moving from stocks to options, I was making an income that would allow me to sustain myself in Taiwan (granted, the price of living there is lower).

Make sure you have a reliable trading strategy before you even THINK about relying on your trading for income.

I made a video on this topic:

 

bootsyjam

Active member
229 21
I agree with Tim, that was an excellent well thought out post.

If you spend time on forums then you will no doubt be familiar with zenlike phrases ("you are not trying to predict the future" - uh yes I am) so my first bit of advice would be to keep things very simple.

You already have a massive headstart over 99%+ of the posters on here (at a guess) is that you are seeing how the industry operates on a far more technical level. Most traders, myself included, do not hedge as we are directional traders. You have a great opportunity as you are trading with people who know how to make money and you will hopefully learn from them.

So after that slightly wordy intro, back to the original point-keep things simple. You state that you follow the bid/ask prices and trade futures like that. You risk 1% of your capital. Well that's what the fellas in the prop firms do as well.
I was also told by a futures broker that the most common cause of blow ups was from people going over their risk profiles i.e. risking more than 1% as they became overconfident/cocky. So you already have the discipline and watch prices in the same way as they do.

And finally the big one. Do not compare yourself to anyone else. All you have to do as a trader comes down to one thing: do you have a trading plan that is consistent and replicable which enables you to make consistent profit. In other words, does your edge make you money consistently.

If you are able to execute your plan and make money consistently then trading firms will find you/you can find them. And even if they don't, you will make money consistently on your own book (with less leverage).

I have a friend that is a trader for Futex. I went in to see them and everyone there was I would guess mid late 20s-early 30s although there were definitely some older traders there (50ish) who were senior. I would guess that they don't care-if you make money consistently then that's all that matters.

One final thing. Do not worry about the prop trading. Focus on making money consistently. That's all there is. Keep it simple. Everything after that is just detail tht you don't need.
 
 
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