Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Quick Update

I've answered all the questions on my previous post, so have a little gander at your replies. Many thanks again for all of your interest shown :)

Well the Spaniards at Jazztel have finally realised theres a problem with my line, and are sending a guy out to the apartment on Thursday to check it out. So fingers crossed by then my internet should be up and I can get back into a 'groove' again. Frustrating when you are depending on other people to sort out your problems, but that's unfortunately the life of a trader when your dealing with the internet and computers as your livelyhood.

Luckily I have managed to get some trading done on my mate's line. However it is a bit temperamental and feels and bit 'sticky' at times, but it's actually fine to trade from and beats all the internet cafe's I've tried in the past.

I'll post Sat's results below - I enjoyed the day, there felt like a lot of 'spoof' money around but enough genuine money to get some great swings. Reading people trying to manipulate the market is a skill, but often the spoof money is quite obvious to see. Look for the money actually getting matched, not the fake money queing up looking like it wants to be taken.

My results show 2 big losses where I got the market pretty wrong. But as I've mentioned before it's how you recover from those losses thats most important. I felt I was lacking a little discipline at the end of the day, but knew I was trading well and quickly made back the losses I made. I know its frustrating to lose money and that terrible feeling of 'getting it wrong'. But you have to give yourself a slap and get on with it. Trading is a massive mind game which you have to be in control of. The sooner you don't let the loss affect you, the sooner you will get the losses back. You really can afford to take a few losses in a day and still come out with a nice profit. Think of a loss as a sign to concentrate and focus more, not a sign to get annoyed with the situation and in turn affect your profits.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Quarter Of A Century!

Today's my birthday and I've reached the big 25! If someone told me 5 years ago that I'd be living in Madrid, working as a full-time trader and earning a tax free living I would have laughed in their faces. I'd probably tell them to put the idea back up their ass where it came from. But I'm relieved to say the idea is truth and it's far from a figment of someone's imagination. I can honestly say trading has changed my life for the better and it's given me the confidence and freedom to enjoy the things in life I feel are most important. The list certainly does not include working for someone else, working long hours and having little control of my financial future. I'd struggle to find a job (if you can call it that) which outweighs the benefits trading offers. I'm in no rush to find an alternative method of earnings just yet :)

I've had a very busy 10 days and apologies for no updates to my blog. I moved apartment last Sunday and it's been a very eventful time. The funniest of happenings came when we had to walk 20 mins through the centre of Madrid with a sofa strapped to our backs. 4 of us tackled many hurdles on the way. Playing chicken with a car on a narrow street was hilarious, which somehow we won! Also the ballards on every street in Madrid came into their own when you have more important things to worry about. I've newly named these little bastards knee whackers, for obvious reasons.

As a trader working from home, it's imperitive to adjust to your new working environment as quick as you can. Also it's very important to have a solid internet connection installed instantly if possible. This area I haven't had much luck with :( I'm still awaiting my line to be switched on at home and these lazy Spaniards are frustrating me to say the least! I'm writing this from an internet cafe nearby, but unfortunately the connection isn't stable enough to trade on. From past experience I've told myself never to trade on a connection that is spiking all over the place. I've lost money in the past working in tricky conditions and I'm not making the same mistake again. So hopefully shouldn't be too long before back to trading.

The time off from trading however, has given me the opportunity to finish off the information regarding my training courses. I have written a word document which describes the courses in detail and gives a structured breakdown of all 4 packages I'm going to offer. Including the prices individually for 1,2 or more people who attend for each package. I live with a graphic designer who is going to help me get my website up and running as soon as our internets up and running. The website will have videos, screenshots and a lot more material to look at. The content is all there for the courses and I'm ready to start training from October onwards. The only reason I have hardly mentioned the courses, is because I want everything to be clearly presented on a nice professional website. But due to the interest shown I wanted to have something that I can send out to people to have a look at.

Here's a paragraph from my word document:

"I’m going to teach you how to control the inevitable losses you will make and control your money through money management advice. Also how to effectively turn small profits into nice monthly profits over time. With strict staking plans to ensure you are comfortable playing with gradually increased amounts. Planning out your journey over several months to reach the goals you are dreaming of. I aim to dramatically expand your knowledge of what it takes to go full-time working as a trader on Betfair."

My courses will be on a 1-1 basis, or with a small group of people. With large reductions individually for people attending the course with 2 people or more. The client will fly out to sunny Spain and get a very hands on experience. I want to provide a very intensive course where the client can understand what a full-time trader goes through on a daily basis. I will also briefly list here what the 4 packages will entail:

  • Work with a full time professional trader for 3-6 days. Intensive training course with a clear set out lesson plan. Adjusted for the clients needs.
  • Listen in and watch two traders working as a team on Skype, combining brains and ideas throughout the trading day. Ensuring discipline, control and confidence at all times.
  • A walk through of all the necessary hardware and software needed to trade efficiently on Betfair’s exchange. Looking at ways to improve your own home trading set-up, and making your desk space an on-going cash machine. Being happy with your surroundings can create a very successful working environment.
  • BetAngel or BetTrader: 6 months-1 years (depending on package chosen) worth of access to the best trading software out there.
  • Personalised Training DVD of the entire course from start till finish, with no editing. Made with Camtasia software, the videos will show every second I trade over the duration of the course. Providing the client with a priceless piece of training material to continually look over and study. The videos will have audio recorded after, with in depth details and explanations of all my days trading activities. This content could be anything from 10-35 hours worth of training videos!
  • On-going mentoring service - Providing the client with a mentor that has been through the mistakes a trader makes when learning. Trying to reduce the mistakes the client might possibly have in the future. Having someone at the end of the phone to chat to about anything. Guiding you through those tricky times of losses and how to overcome them. Also providing the client with continual training video's sent to them every month.

If anyone would like the word document sending to them, please just email me via the link on the right of my blog. Bit of a long post sorry for the long read =/

Friday, September 4, 2009

Prices Affect Prices

Happy return to trading today after my time off. Theres always a doubt in my mind that having a few days off I wont be as on the ball as usual. Lacking the edge you get when trading day in day out. Sometimes a break does me good to refresh things, other times I lose my focus a little. Luckily today was the first case with some fantastic swing opportunities. The first few races were awesome if you caught them quickly, as they looked very likely to keep going for a while with nice monentum keeping on pushing them. Plus the layers were out to get Fallon today in which a massive drift developed on the first at Lingfield. £275ish after the first two I could afford to take the foot off the accelerator and ease myself into the day. Couldn't have wished for a better start and just took it easy after that plodding over nicely. It's good to take things a bit slower than normal if you have a good start. Protecting your profits is important as its almost too easy to get carried away with greed. Which in turn eats away at those hard earned pennies.

I have always looked at 3 ladders simultaneously, and I don't use the enhanced ladder. I keep the full-market depth open on all selections so I can easily jump on an opportunity on another horse with ease. Keeping an eye out on all ladders should give you a better understanding of the bigger picture. Although I'm always concentrating on the favourite, I am aware whats developing on the other 2nd and 3rd favourite. However most of the time I'm really mainly seeing how the 2nd fav will react compared to the favourite. Only because on the majority of markets there is 1 clear favourite, and the second favourite is the only selection that could have an instant affect on the favourites price. It gives me a great overview of how prices affect prices, and gives me clearer judgment of which way a price is going. Example if you see the favourite getting backed heavily, then suddenly change in direction. Theres a great chance another horse that is closely related in price is being backed as the market book overround is just levelling itself out.

It's not easy to look at more than one selection at once, but I would reccommend trying it. Just start off by glancing over across the 2nd and 3rd favourite every 30 secs or so. Getting a feel of how the price on 1 horse affects the price on another. Sometimes they don't affect each other at all it seems so be aware. Then develop it so you can flick your eyes over a lot more frequently.

Another advantage of seeing 3 ladders is being able to quickly change and trade on another horse. For instance if the 2nd fav has being backed into favourite and more interest is now on this horse, it might be a good idea trading the newly backed fav. It simply gives you more options and opportunites at your disposal. Plus having an overall view of the market gives you a great view on what is value and what is not.

Back To Business

Returned back from the UK last nite after just catching my plane. There was a massive queue at Liverpool airport in which I had 15 mins to get through all the checks. Realising I was a little screwed I pushed straight to the front and somehow got back to Spain on time. I have worked out the best way to travel in my many trips back to the UK in the last 8 months. Wait for the wheels to leave the ground, shut your blind, straight to sleep, then wake up when someone says 10 minutes to landing :)

Leeds festival was awesome! Radiohead put on a show like no other. Everyone was in ore of their performance and the light show was the best I've ever seen. A must watch for anyone that hasn't had the pleasure of seeing them live. I'm just about back to normality now after a few days of recovering and looking forward to getting back trading after my break. But its not going to be straight forward as I'm moving house on Sunday. Not far from where I'm living now but getting my fast internet line installed should take a few days to be up and running. Also getting used to a new working environment takes little bit of time. Trading is very much about being happy with whats going on around you, as much as it is about reading the numbers affectively. I'm not too sure how many people realise this.....

If you have stress in your life of any kind it will affect your trading performance. Even if its good news sometimes even this can distract you from making money. I'm amazed how level headed you have to be in your own life to trade to the standard you are capable of. You have to clear your mind of all things that could possibly affect your trading, and get focused on those numbers and spotting trends. The best way to do this is emurse yourself in your computer and don't concentrate on anything else. Don't browse around on facebook and youtube inbetween races, its the last thing you want when your trying to seperate yourself from the outside world. Try and forget about any negativity and pump yourself up for battle. Easier said than done I know but you simply have to get your mind working at its peak if you want to make a living out of trading. Also your setup at home has a dramatic affect on your totals. Having ample space to work in, working in a quiet place, having a clean workspace, having the necessary hardware to ensure everything runs smoothly, not answering your mobile whilst trading. All these things and many more is what all full-time traders make sure of. You have to treat this like a job and realise that all these factors will ensure you stay focused and disciplined throughout the day.

I will make a new post regarding my new setup sometime next week when I'm sorted at my new place. Also I will answer the questions on my last post after todays racing.
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