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How and when did you first become interested in the market?

I first became interested in the market back in the late 90’s when technology stocks were the next big thing. Initially, my mum got me motivated to trade equities as she was always reading the Financial Review and commenting on companies and their respective performances. Gradually I became more and more interested in how the fundamentals affected the market.

And then what happened?

I started to buy and sell equities in the ASX, but mostly start-ups and mid cap stocks. I didn’t have the knowledge or foresight to buy blue chips and hold them for long term gains. I was new to trading and was out to try to make some money in the short term. I was fortunate enough to have early success and grew my portfolio quite considerably in the beginning.

How have you been able to learn and educate yourself about the markets?

In the early years I educated myself by reading the financial review and newspapers to learn about company news, charts and fundamentals. I did not apply any technical knowledge to my trading which, I now realise is like trying to play tennis with a blind fold across your eyes. In 2011, I followed up on a small advertisement that had caught my eye while on the train in Melbourne and I attended a free stock market trading seminar with Carlo Castellano of Traders Circle. Since then I have completed the Traders Circle Trading Mastery and Fast Track Programs.

Did you make mistakes when first starting out?

I think almost all traders make some mistakes in their early years of trading. I soon became aware that you can lose profits as quickly as you gain them by not following your set of trading rules. Mistakes can still be made today but losses can be limited if you follow a pre-determined set of trading rules. A good piece of advice would be to go and enrol in a stock market trading course, such as those provided by Traders Circle, and get yourself educated before you commit any of your hard earned savings to investing in the market. I believe this would dramatically increase your probability of success and longevity as a trader of the market.

Would you define yourself as a discretionary trader, a mechanical trader or a combination of both?

When I first began trading equities, I would have defined myself as a discretionary trader. Now that I have educated myself more about the market and I follow a set of trading rules, I would describe myself as a more mechanical trader. This is a direct result of attending the Trading Mastery and Fast Track Programs with Traders Circle.

Can you give us a brief overview of your trading style?

In the early years I was only trading equities to make profits and the strategy was simple – buy when the share price is low and sell when it is higher. Now that I have become more educated about the market and have learnt more strategies with Traders Circle, I have a system for trading options whereby I follow a set of rules to guide me when to enter and exit a trade. I invest in blue chip stocks for the longer term to grow and build a portfolio for capital gain. I also use the equity in my share portfolio to cover margin for some of my options trades.

Is there any one trade (win or loss) that had a profound effect on your development as a trader? If so, what did you learn from the trade?

I’m not sure if any one trade stands out because I can think of many trades that have had a profound effect on my development as a trader. In fact, almost every trade you execute and close out (for a profit or loss) makes you a better trader. Experience counts for a great deal and sticking to your system or trading rules is paramount to becoming a successful trader.

Can you tell us about your best and worst trades?

I have had successful trades returning around 20-30% profit on a consistent basis and a few trades that have returned over 100% profit and as high as 300% profit in just a few days. I have also had trades that have returned the maximum loss because I failed to stick to the rules or follow my trading system.

Would you classify yourself as a short-term or long term trader? What advice would you offer to people getting started as traders?

I would say both as I trade options for short term gains and blue chip stocks for a much longer term with a view to capital growth. The best advice I could give traders starting out is to get yourself educated about the market before you start trading or investing. The more knowledge you have as a trader the better. If you stick to a system or a set of pre-determined trading rules, the more likely you are to achieve your goals.

What markets do you trade and which markets do you prefer? Do you have a favourite, and why?

I mainly trade options in the ASX because they fit my short term trading view and you can make profits from a bullish, bearish or sideways trending market. You need to form a view of the current trend of the market and search for trades that follow that same view.

What makes your trading style different from others? What sets you apart from other traders?

I believe that someone who has educated themselves about the market, has a trading system and follows a strict set of rules with passion and discipline, has a far greater probability of success than someone who has not done this kind of preparation before entering the market. All of my successful trades have come from applying the trading system and following the rules of that system. Traders without any system or rules are more likely to lose or will have very inconsistent and patchy successes.

Do you have a favourite rule?

Yes, without a doubt my favourite rule is to close out of a trade when I am sitting at a 20-30% profit. If you follow this rule you will be a successful trader. You can’t go broke taking 20-30% profit on a consistent basis and that is what my favourite trading rule tells me to do.

Has trading effected your lifestyle?

Yes, trading has changed my life in a very profound way. I have left my full time job working 9-5 Monday to Friday so that I can focus on trading. I take it very seriously and always strive to be a great trader. You never stop learning and that is why I constantly try to educate myself more and more about the market and I also learn a lot from trading through my successes and failures with individual trades.

What books, seminars and courses have you read or attended and which would you recommend?

I have attended the Trading Mastery Program with Carlo Castellano of Traders Circle twice. In addition to this I have also completed the Fast Track Program with Traders Circle where I learnt more strategies for trading options in the ASX. I would highly recommend these courses and encourage anyone interested in trading the market to give them a call or attend one of their online webinars.

What does the future hold for you?

I have already integrated the trading system into my everyday life and I expect that in the future I will continue to educate myself about the market, gain more experience as a trader by doing more trades and try to grow my share portfolio along the way. I am already significantly improved as a trader of the market and I hope to continue to learn and grow into a more sophisticated and successful trader. I would expect to make a living from trading in the near future as that is my goal and what I want to spend my time doing.