Lazy Trading Forex eBOOK

How To Start A Blog

Creating a blog couldn’t be easier and yet more complicated in 2020.
There are so many different things to think about, and yet so many different platforms you can use to streamline the process.
Understandably you’ll already have an idea of what you want to write about, I, unfortunately, can’t help you with that, but what I can do is show you how you can set up a killer blog that will drive readers to your website.
We’ll take you through what you’ll need to get started, our five steps to setting your blog up, the best blogging platforms to use, how to get your blog discovered, and the do’s and don’ts of blogging.
But first, we need to establish what type of blog you want to set up.

What type of blog?

Firstly you’ll want to have a goal in mind. What are you aiming to achieve through your blog?
Do you want to pull in more users to your sales pages by writing about your brand, to increase its publicity?
Do you want to build a blog that promotes brands and products from other companies?
Or do you just want to set up a blog documenting your travels around the world?
In order to pick the right software for you, you’ll want to have a grasp before you start of how big this blog is going to be, whether you’re going to monetize it, and what type of blog it’s going to become.
For example, if you’re planning on building an affiliate blogging programme, where you promote other brand’s products and call readers to action to but the products, you’ll be writing a lot of content and will benefit from having a more comprehensive blogging system with lots of plugins to promote sales.
But if you’re looking to just set up a personal, or a personal brand blog talking about yourself and your brand, you may not perhaps need as many comprehensive features as you would if you were building an affiliate blog.
You may also want to build an online portfolio of your work, which could require an entirely different piece of blogging kit, as opposed to the traditional blog that hosts articles and journals.

What you’ll need to get started.

There are 3 key things you’ll need to get up and running.

  1. A blogging platform.
After you’ve identified the type of blog you want to set up, plus whether you’re going to make money from it, you’ll then need to pick a blogging platform tailored to your needs. Many people chose to operate on WordPress as it is one of the most comprehensive blogging systems going, but they forget platforms like Wix and Squarespace that are great for both helping you save and make money and are great options for those who are less tech-savvy and are new to the blogging game. Plus if you’re blogging for business, you might want to think about using LinkedIn for your business blog.
We’ll go into more detail on what blogging platforms are best for your needs shortly, but make sure to keep in mind your objectives and technical experience when choosing the right platform for you.
  1. A hosting platform.
Every website needs a web host to store their website’s information on the internet. A web host is an online service provider that will store your website’s information on one of its online servers. This will put your blog out there to the world. The best web hosts will perform a variety of functions for you, for example, Wix is an all-in-one package that will host your website for you, allow you to register a domain name, and has easy to use website design tools to help you start your blog.
Web hosting can be expensive though so make sure you pick the best value for money host that can cater to the amount of traffic you have running through your website. Check out our post on the 11 best hosting providers. [Insert blog link here]
  1. A domain name.
I’m sure by now you already know what sort of blog you want to set up, whether that’s a travel, blog, a blog accompanying your online store, or perhaps an affiliate marketing product review blog. You’ll have a niche and an idea and now all you need is a name. Every website online has what’s called a domain name. It’s included in the website address at the top of your search bar, for example, our domain name is www.digitalsupermarket.com.
You’ll need to register a domain name after you purchase a hosting plan, to enable customers to find your site quickly and easily. One good tip is to find a hosting platform like Bluehost or GoDaddy that will provide you with a free domain name when you register for one of their web hosting plans as domain registration can be fairly pricey. Pick a great domain name that is easy for customers to read and type into Google so they can find it easier online.
TOP TIP: To increase your blog’s search engine ranking, and to help more people find you on Google, try to pick a domain name that has either a .com or .co.uk ending. These domains often rank a lot higher in Google searches than .org’s, .net’s, and .info’s, and for that reason can be slightly more expensive, yet can help boost your site’s reach and credibility.

The Best Blogging Platforms For You.

There are a wealth of platforms out there catering to all your blogging or online portfolio needs. We have listed some of the main ones below shedding some light on what needs they service and why they might be a great option for you.

WordPress - The best software to give you full customisation.

WordPress is perhaps one of the most renowned blogging platforms in the world, running approximately 35% of the internet. It’s favoured highly by professional bloggers because it gives you total freedom to do whatever you want with your blog. WordPress can help you build your blog using one if its search engine optimised themes, you can customise using its drag and drop website builder tool to create a stunning blog.
What’s more, is you’ll be able to use its professional blogging service to post your content online and take advantage of the hundreds of third party app plugins, you can integrate into your blog, to improve automation, add new features, and drive traffic to your site. The only downside of WordPress is that it can be quite technical and can take some time getting used to, but once you’ve got the hang of things, you’ll have great control over everything on your webpage.
Pros:
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Wix - Best for monetizing your site.

Wix is probably the most streamlined and easiest blog providers. It’s so simple and easy to use, it’s therefore great for anyone just starting out in the blogging world. You can customise one of its stunning templates with Wix’s drag and drop editor, and then upload blog posts to your site by slotting in pictures, gifs, social media buttons, sidebars, and other widgets that will help your blog stand out.
One of the coolest features about Wix is its marketplace integration, where you can install a whole variety of third-party applications to your blog to provide your users with greater features and usability. Wix is the perfect all-in-one blogging solution to help you easily build a platform to amplify your business to the world, helping you to make more money, but it can also save you a lot of money as it’s cost-efficient plans roll up, web hosting, blog posting, and domain registration all into one product!
Check out our Wix review and our comparison of Wix and Squarespace for a deep dive into Wix’s main blogging features. [Insert link here]
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Squarespace - Best for creating visually stunning blogs.

Squarespace is very similar to Wix, in that it is an all-in-one web building and blogging platform that can help you build a blog you can monetize efficiently. It sets itself aside though through its better design and customisation features, making it one of the best platforms on the marketing if you’re looking to design a visually aesthetic blog. I’d recommend using this platform if you are a business operating in some sort of design, arts, or culinary industry.
Although it offers minimal template options, Squarespace’s templates are works of art and offer you great customization when building your blog. Plus Squarespace offers a great blogging tool that lets you schedule posts and customize your blog to suit more mobile audiences.
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LinkedIn - Best for blogging businesses.

Aside from setting up a blog on your own site, corporate entities can use LinkedIn to enhance and amplify their presence online. LinkedIn has more than 575 million users, most of whom are professionals and members of corporate conglomerates, and you can use this social platform to target some of the most influential people in the world.
If you’re blogging about business this is the perfect platform to use a pre-existing community of people to enhance your social standing. You’ll then be able to build connections and followers on your profile who can easily share your blog on their platform through a couple of simple clicks.
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Instagram - Best for the Artists.

Instagram is one of the biggest blogging sites in the world and without realising it, we are all technically bloggers in some way with our Instagram accounts, right? Ultimately for professional use, it is great for building a portfolio that has some form of visual or graphic eye-catching media around it. Instagram lets you post videos, photos, boomerangs, even write a blog in the photo’s caption if you wanted to!
Best of all, Instagram is free, and you can use its business software to link up your online store, to drag users away from your profile, using its product tagging features, and land them in your online checkouts. Our top tip for using Instagram is to post regularly and keep on the theme of your blog. Don’t go off-piste as you’re followers will catch on quickly and unfollow you. And with 1 billion people using the platform each day, it is a great way to gain people’s attention and build your brand’s presence online.
Pros:
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The Do’s And Don’ts Of Blogging

Here are a couple of top tips to bear in mind when building your blog to help you create an awesome, lead driven platform.

The Don’ts

Don’t use complicated language too soon.

With that in mind, do include language that your target audience will understand. But remember they are still here to learn, so don’t drop people in at the deep end right away by using complex jargon off the bat. Define terms and spell it out in layman’s terms for people at the outset, and as the post goes on, then introduce more complex writing. Introducing technical jargon at the start of your posts is an instant turn off for most readers.

Don’t waffle - Keep it succinct.

People want to get to the punchline now. 43% of people admit to skimming through blogs to get to the information they need, meaning to get your blogging site converting leads, you need to engage the reader early on and offer information succinctly throughout your post.
Plus don’t make your blog too long. Depending on what you’re writing, a lot of people will see large volumes of text and will switch off immediately. There is no set limit for what a good and bad amount of text is, that’s something you’ll have to figure out per your industry, but from my experience, the shorter, the better.

Don’t make headlines too long.

Also ensure that your headline is not more than 60 characters long. If it gets too long it won’t rank well in search engines and people just won’t want to read it. Check out this headline analysis tool which will analyse the effectiveness of your proposed headlines.

Don’t plagiarise or use credited images.

Copying other people’s work is lazy and can land you in a lot of hot water in extreme cases if you breach a copyright regulation. But it’s also just unfair on the person who has worked hard or been creative to write that work. The same goes for images, people need to make a living from the content and photos they’re taking so don’t steal that off them.

The Do’s

Do write killer headlines.

People are like goldfish. You only have about 3 seconds to get their attention. That’s why it is important to write catchy, funny, and enticing headlines to draw your reader in. One good way to do it is to use the “How To” and “10 Best” strategies. These sorts of titles telling people ‘How to set up a blog’ or ‘the ten best web hosting platforms’ are search engine optimised, lead winning titles that rank highly in Google searches. Try them out and see!

Do post regularly.

The key to creating a great blog that builds leads is posting regularly. Although it is not the best idea to post regularly. Ideally, you want to post 3-4 times a week to get the best influx of traffic to your site. You’ll also want to check out when’s best to post for your target audience, for example, if you’re in the FOREX market, you’ll want to post your blogs perhaps at 8 AM, before the markets open when city workers are on their staring at their phones on their morning commuter trains to the city.

Do share on social media.

Share your content far and wide on your social platforms. Everyone is on social media these days and its outreach is simply phenomenal. That’s why you should always share your posts to your social channels to get greater traffic on your website, and include share buttons all-around your blog to invite your readers to share your articles too!

Do use SEO keywords to drive more traffic.

In a nutshell, SEO keywords are the phrases people put into search engines when they are looking for information on a certain subject. They are how you get found on your website. Depending on what you are writing about, there is always a set of keywords relating to that topic that you can implement, to help you show up higher in people’s google searches. For example, people might regularly search in google, ‘what is the best compost for growing sunflowers?’ When you come to writing about growing sunflowers in your blog, you might want to use these words or incorporate this question into your blog somewhere, to help you rank higher on Google.

Do use call’s to action to take your readers to the next step.

If you don’t challenge your reader at the end of your blog to follow you on Instagram, or check out your sales pages, you’ll never get the leads or sales you are looking for. With that in mind, build compelling calls to action at the end of each of your posts, to pull readers into taking the next step. Check out our post on landing pages to see a couple of cool ways on how to implement calls to action on your site [insert link here].

Do identify a target audience.

People will often tell you to write as though you were in the shoes of the person you’re looking to bring to your website, but it’s true! Identify what type of people you’re writing to, for instance, if you’re writing a business blog about FOREX trading, you’ll write with potential traders in mind who have one eye on the stock market and the other on your blog. Or if you’re a wedding florist, you’ll set your portfolio up to target those people looking to get married in the next year.

Leads, Sales, Results.

Blogging is one of the most influential marketing strategies in the world and the best bloggers can reap some awesome rewards for producing some truly awesome content.
It is fairly straightforward to get started and we advise if you’re a small business, or someone with minimal blogging experience, to try out Wix or Squarespace first before you jump into using more technical platforms like WordPress. Once you’re up and running remember our top tips on what to do and what to avoid when writing your blog. Plus don’t forget to think about optimising and adding useful applications to your site to help you build and grow your content. Check out these 39 awesome blogging tools you can use to drive greater traffic to your site!
Found this article useful? Make sure you share it with your friends on Facebook and Twitter and let us know in the comments if you have any other useful blogging tips.
submitted by digitalsupermarket to u/digitalsupermarket [link] [comments]

H1 Backtest of ParallaxFX's BBStoch system

Disclaimer: None of this is financial advice. I have no idea what I'm doing. Please do your own research or you will certainly lose money. I'm not a statistician, data scientist, well-seasoned trader, or anything else that would qualify me to make statements such as the below with any weight behind them. Take them for the incoherent ramblings that they are.
TL;DR at the bottom for those not interested in the details.
This is a bit of a novel, sorry about that. It was mostly for getting my own thoughts organized, but if even one person reads the whole thing I will feel incredibly accomplished.

Background

For those of you not familiar, please see the various threads on this trading system here. I can't take credit for this system, all glory goes to ParallaxFX!
I wanted to see how effective this system was at H1 for a couple of reasons: 1) My current broker is TD Ameritrade - their Forex minimum is a mini lot, and I don't feel comfortable enough yet with the risk to trade mini lots on the higher timeframes(i.e. wider pip swings) that ParallaxFX's system uses, so I wanted to see if I could scale it down. 2) I'm fairly impatient, so I don't like to wait days and days with my capital tied up just to see if a trade is going to win or lose.
This does mean it requires more active attention since you are checking for setups once an hour instead of once a day or every 4-6 hours, but the upside is that you trade more often this way so you end up winning or losing faster and moving onto the next trade. Spread does eat more of the trade this way, but I'll cover this in my data below - it ends up not being a problem.
I looked at data from 6/11 to 7/3 on all pairs with a reasonable spread(pairs listed at bottom above the TL;DR). So this represents about 3-4 weeks' worth of trading. I used mark(mid) price charts. Spreadsheet link is below for anyone that's interested.

System Details

I'm pretty much using ParallaxFX's system textbook, but since there are a few options in his writeups, I'll include all the discretionary points here:

And now for the fun. Results!

As you can see, a higher target ended up with higher profit despite a much lower winrate. This is partially just how things work out with profit targets in general, but there's an additional point to consider in our case: the spread. Since we are trading on a lower timeframe, there is less overall price movement and thus the spread takes up a much larger percentage of the trade than it would if you were trading H4, Daily or Weekly charts. You can see exactly how much it accounts for each trade in my spreadsheet if you're interested. TDA does not have the best spreads, so you could probably improve these results with another broker.
EDIT: I grabbed typical spreads from other brokers, and turns out while TDA is pretty competitive on majors, their minors/crosses are awful! IG beats them by 20-40% and Oanda beats them 30-60%! Using IG spreads for calculations increased profits considerably (another 5% on top) and Oanda spreads increased profits massively (another 15%!). Definitely going to be considering another broker than TDA for this strategy. Plus that'll allow me to trade micro-lots, so I can be more granular(and thus accurate) with my position sizing and compounding.

A Note on Spread

As you can see in the data, there were scenarios where the spread was 80% of the overall size of the trade(the size of the confirmation candle that you draw your fibonacci retracements over), which would obviously cut heavily into your profits.
Removing any trades where the spread is more than 50% of the trade width improved profits slightly without removing many trades, but this is almost certainly just coincidence on a small sample size. Going below 40% and even down to 30% starts to cut out a lot of trades for the less-common pairs, but doesn't actually change overall profits at all(~1% either way).
However, digging all the way down to 25% starts to really make some movement. Profit at the -161.8% TP level jumps up to 37.94% if you filter out anything with a spread that is more than 25% of the trade width! And this even keeps the sample size fairly large at 187 total trades.
You can get your profits all the way up to 48.43% at the -161.8% TP level if you filter all the way down to only trades where spread is less than 15% of the trade width, however your sample size gets much smaller at that point(108 trades) so I'm not sure I would trust that as being accurate in the long term.
Overall based on this data, I'm going to only take trades where the spread is less than 25% of the trade width. This may bias my trades more towards the majors, which would mean a lot more correlated trades as well(more on correlation below), but I think it is a reasonable precaution regardless.

Time of Day

Time of day had an interesting effect on trades. In a totally predictable fashion, a vast majority of setups occurred during the London and New York sessions: 5am-12pm Eastern. However, there was one outlier where there were many setups on the 11PM bar - and the winrate was about the same as the big hours in the London session. No idea why this hour in particular - anyone have any insight? That's smack in the middle of the Tokyo/Sydney overlap, not at the open or close of either.
On many of the hour slices I have a feeling I'm just dealing with small number statistics here since I didn't have a lot of data when breaking it down by individual hours. But here it is anyway - for all TP levels, these three things showed up(all in Eastern time):
I don't have any reason to think these timeframes would maintain this behavior over the long term. They're almost certainly meaningless. EDIT: When you de-dup highly correlated trades, the number of trades in these timeframes really drops, so from this data there is no reason to think these timeframes would be any different than any others in terms of winrate.
That being said, these time frames work out for me pretty well because I typically sleep 12am-7am Eastern time. So I automatically avoid the 5am-6am timeframe, and I'm awake for the majority of this system's setups.

Moving stops up to breakeven

This section goes against everything I know and have ever heard about trade management. Please someone find something wrong with my data. I'd love for someone to check my formulas, but I realize that's a pretty insane time commitment to ask of a bunch of strangers.
Anyways. What I found was that for these trades moving stops up...basically at all...actually reduced the overall profitability.
One of the data points I collected while charting was where the price retraced back to after hitting a certain milestone. i.e. once the price hit the -61.8% profit level, how far back did it retrace before hitting the -100% profit level(if at all)? And same goes for the -100% profit level - how far back did it retrace before hitting the -161.8% profit level(if at all)?
Well, some complex excel formulas later and here's what the results appear to be. Emphasis on appears because I honestly don't believe it. I must have done something wrong here, but I've gone over it a hundred times and I can't find anything out of place.
Now, you might think exactly what I did when looking at these numbers: oof, the spread killed us there right? Because even when you move your SL to 0%, you still end up paying the spread, so it's not truly "breakeven". And because we are trading on a lower timeframe, the spread can be pretty hefty right?
Well even when I manually modified the data so that the spread wasn't subtracted(i.e. "Breakeven" was truly +/- 0), things don't look a whole lot better, and still way worse than the passive trade management method of leaving your stops in place and letting it run. And that isn't even a realistic scenario because to adjust out the spread you'd have to move your stoploss inside the candle edge by at least the spread amount, meaning it would almost certainly be triggered more often than in the data I collected(which was purely based on the fib levels and mark price). Regardless, here are the numbers for that scenario:
From a literal standpoint, what I see behind this behavior is that 44 of the 69 breakeven trades(65%!) ended up being profitable to -100% after retracing deeply(but not to the original SL level), which greatly helped offset the purely losing trades better than the partial profit taken at -61.8%. And 36 went all the way back to -161.8% after a deep retracement without hitting the original SL. Anyone have any insight into this? Is this a problem with just not enough data? It seems like enough trades that a pattern should emerge, but again I'm no expert.
I also briefly looked at moving stops to other lower levels (78.6%, 61.8%, 50%, 38.2%, 23.6%), but that didn't improve things any. No hard data to share as I only took a quick look - and I still might have done something wrong overall.
The data is there to infer other strategies if anyone would like to dig in deep(more explanation on the spreadsheet below). I didn't do other combinations because the formulas got pretty complicated and I had already answered all the questions I was looking to answer.

2-Candle vs Confirmation Candle Stops

Another interesting point is that the original system has the SL level(for stop entries) just at the outer edge of the 2-candle pattern that makes up the system. Out of pure laziness, I set up my stops just based on the confirmation candle. And as it turns out, that is much a much better way to go about it.
Of the 60 purely losing trades, only 9 of them(15%) would go on to be winners with stops on the 2-candle formation. Certainly not enough to justify the extra loss and/or reduced profits you are exposing yourself to in every single other trade by setting a wider SL.
Oddly, in every single scenario where the wider stop did save the trade, it ended up going all the way to the -161.8% profit level. Still, not nearly worth it.

Correlated Trades

As I've said many times now, I'm really not qualified to be doing an analysis like this. This section in particular.
Looking at shared currency among the pairs traded, 74 of the trades are correlated. Quite a large group, but it makes sense considering the sort of moves we're looking for with this system.
This means you are opening yourself up to more risk if you were to trade on every signal since you are technically trading with the same underlying sentiment on each different pair. For example, GBP/USD and AUD/USD moving together almost certainly means it's due to USD moving both pairs, rather than GBP and AUD both moving the same size and direction coincidentally at the same time. So if you were to trade both signals, you would very likely win or lose both trades - meaning you are actually risking double what you'd normally risk(unless you halve both positions which can be a good option, and is discussed in ParallaxFX's posts and in various other places that go over pair correlation. I won't go into detail about those strategies here).
Interestingly though, 17 of those apparently correlated trades ended up with different wins/losses.
Also, looking only at trades that were correlated, winrate is 83%/70%/55% (for the three TP levels).
Does this give some indication that the same signal on multiple pairs means the signal is stronger? That there's some strong underlying sentiment driving it? Or is it just a matter of too small a sample size? The winrate isn't really much higher than the overall winrates, so that makes me doubt it is statistically significant.
One more funny tidbit: EUCAD netted the lowest overall winrate: 30% to even the -61.8% TP level on 10 trades. Seems like that is just a coincidence and not enough data, but dang that's a sucky losing streak.
EDIT: WOW I spent some time removing correlated trades manually and it changed the results quite a bit. Some thoughts on this below the results. These numbers also include the other "What I will trade" filters. I added a new worksheet to my data to show what I ended up picking.
To do this, I removed correlated trades - typically by choosing those whose spread had a lower % of the trade width since that's objective and something I can see ahead of time. Obviously I'd like to only keep the winning trades, but I won't know that during the trade. This did reduce the overall sample size down to a level that I wouldn't otherwise consider to be big enough, but since the results are generally consistent with the overall dataset, I'm not going to worry about it too much.
I may also use more discretionary methods(support/resistance, quality of indecision/confirmation candles, news/sentiment for the pairs involved, etc) to filter out correlated trades in the future. But as I've said before I'm going for a pretty mechanical system.
This brought the 3 TP levels and even the breakeven strategies much closer together in overall profit. It muted the profit from the high R:R strategies and boosted the profit from the low R:R strategies. This tells me pair correlation was skewing my data quite a bit, so I'm glad I dug in a little deeper. Fortunately my original conclusion to use the -161.8 TP level with static stops is still the winner by a good bit, so it doesn't end up changing my actions.
There were a few times where MANY (6-8) correlated pairs all came up at the same time, so it'd be a crapshoot to an extent. And the data showed this - often then won/lost together, but sometimes they did not. As an arbitrary rule, the more correlations, the more trades I did end up taking(and thus risking). For example if there were 3-5 correlations, I might take the 2 "best" trades given my criteria above. 5+ setups and I might take the best 3 trades, even if the pairs are somewhat correlated.
I have no true data to back this up, but to illustrate using one example: if AUD/JPY, AUD/USD, CAD/JPY, USD/CAD all set up at the same time (as they did, along with a few other pairs on 6/19/20 9:00 AM), can you really say that those are all the same underlying movement? There are correlations between the different correlations, and trying to filter for that seems rough. Although maybe this is a known thing, I'm still pretty green to Forex - someone please enlighten me if so! I might have to look into this more statistically, but it would be pretty complex to analyze quantitatively, so for now I'm going with my gut and just taking a few of the "best" trades out of the handful.
Overall, I'm really glad I went further on this. The boosting of the B/E strategies makes me trust my calculations on those more since they aren't so far from the passive management like they were with the raw data, and that really had me wondering what I did wrong.

What I will trade

Putting all this together, I am going to attempt to trade the following(demo for a bit to make sure I have the hang of it, then for keeps):
Looking at the data for these rules, test results are:
I'll be sure to let everyone know how it goes!

Other Technical Details

Raw Data

Here's the spreadsheet for anyone that'd like it. (EDIT: Updated some of the setups from the last few days that have fully played out now. I also noticed a few typos, but nothing major that would change the overall outcomes. Regardless, I am currently reviewing every trade to ensure they are accurate.UPDATE: Finally all done. Very few corrections, no change to results.)
I have some explanatory notes below to help everyone else understand the spiraled labyrinth of a mind that put the spreadsheet together.

Insanely detailed spreadsheet notes

For you real nerds out there. Here's an explanation of what each column means:

Pairs

  1. AUD/CAD
  2. AUD/CHF
  3. AUD/JPY
  4. AUD/NZD
  5. AUD/USD
  6. CAD/CHF
  7. CAD/JPY
  8. CHF/JPY
  9. EUAUD
  10. EUCAD
  11. EUCHF
  12. EUGBP
  13. EUJPY
  14. EUNZD
  15. EUUSD
  16. GBP/AUD
  17. GBP/CAD
  18. GBP/CHF
  19. GBP/JPY
  20. GBP/NZD
  21. GBP/USD
  22. NZD/CAD
  23. NZD/CHF
  24. NZD/JPY
  25. NZD/USD
  26. USD/CAD
  27. USD/CHF
  28. USD/JPY

TL;DR

Based on the reasonable rules I discovered in this backtest:

Demo Trading Results

Since this post, I started demo trading this system assuming a 5k capital base and risking ~1% per trade. I've added the details to my spreadsheet for anyone interested. The results are pretty similar to the backtest when you consider real-life conditions/timing are a bit different. I missed some trades due to life(work, out of the house, etc), so that brought my total # of trades and thus overall profit down, but the winrate is nearly identical. I also closed a few trades early due to various reasons(not liking the price action, seeing support/resistance emerge, etc).
A quick note is that TD's paper trade system fills at the mid price for both stop and limit orders, so I had to subtract the spread from the raw trade values to get the true profit/loss amount for each trade.
I'm heading out of town next week, then after that it'll be time to take this sucker live!

Live Trading Results

I started live-trading this system on 8/10, and almost immediately had a string of losses much longer than either my backtest or demo period. Murphy's law huh? Anyways, that has me spooked so I'm doing a longer backtest before I start risking more real money. It's going to take me a little while due to the volume of trades, but I'll likely make a new post once I feel comfortable with that and start live trading again.
submitted by ForexBorex to Forex [link] [comments]

on the fakeness of the internet

funny to see that subject pop up again. it was what drove me insane enough to find this sub in the first place.
at any rate, the problem is not the bots. I thought it was, but those are just part of the parasitic ecosystem.
but to get that, first we need to take a few steps back on web history, ad serving, UX, tracking technology and media advertising.
too lazy to gather links, but you know, do your googlin'.
I assume that most of you are fairly web literate here, but I'll try to go down into the bare bones as much as possible for those who aren't.
so let's start with a basic question - what is a web visitor anyway?
from the standpoint of a normal person, that would be a person browsing a given website or piece of content. from the standpoint of technology however all you know is that some device has downloaded content from your server using the http protocol. thanks to the wonderful technology of web browsers, you can plant browser cookies on a visitor - stuff that's used to remember if they logged in, what their preferences are, stuff that your service can read from the device. it also serves usually very basic telemetry like last visit time, session time, and so on.
this, over time has evolved in what we call browser fingerprinting, a convoluted bunch of technology that allows websites and web services to uniquely identify you.
it still doesn't know if you're a human or not, but from the standpoint of the web technology, you're a visitor.
now back in ye old days of the web, when the first banner ads were springing up, these were important questions. most consumers were still to be reached on traditional media channels, and ad spend would have to be justified somehow on the risky ventures of online business. so beyond traditional polls that would infer the value of visitors, websites would start tracking number of visitors, time on page and so on. these were used to milk the advertising cow so to speak, and it gave in to some funny developments like the creation of the popup ad - if I recon correctly on geocities, where they would just but the ads everywhere until some big auto company noticed that they're appearing on porn sites. so - put the ad in the popup, and you can claim it's not in the context of porn!
around this point in time the online ad business is still pretty low tech. you actually have to call a physical human being, they send you ppts and pdfs, you send back image files and excel sheets, you wire money, the ads run, and so on. this is called direct sales, and it's tracked again by counting a bunch of visitors, and telling you how much impressions and clicks your marvelous creatives and ad budget generated.
now enter google - or more precisely, a technology firm called doubleclick that was to be acquired by google. they developed a tool for automatic ad serving, later to be called programmatic advertising, that keeps the pesky sales dude out of the loop and achieves reasonable amounts of scale for a more hefty price - after all, if the sales are automated, you get a bidding war for attention between different advertisers, and you're paying for clicks.
so you can see how this was a strategic move for google - they already had the most valuable data available in this situation. they were seeing in real time what people were searching for, and using the programmatic ad serving system, you could effectively bid not just for general attention - but for attention with an intent to buy.
...and the way that google got this data is because they indexed the web, using bots. at least GoogleBot would identify itself as a site visitor, but in the meantime they developed a service for websites to comprehensively track their own visitors and where they were coming from and what they were doing on your website. incidentally, you could also put on google's ads on your webpage to earn quite a bit of money, as content relevant ads would be shown through the doubleclick system.
this kicked off two things:
one, the ability to classify your website visitors into different clusters and segments allowed businesses to start tailoring the appearance of the website or service to fit that specific audience segment, starting off the great fracture - segmentation of the web (in the sense that two people viewing the same website at the same time were not seeing the same thing)
two, it created a very strong financial incentive for people to trick google into thinking they were having actual human visitors that would click on ads, when in fact they were bots. in an even funnier twist, some of them were from browser hijackers, commonly known as malware at the time, which google cross-financed. look up download valley and crossrider.
at the cross section of the above two, you had one interesting twist: websites that would appear differently to the security bots or the compliance officers of Google as they would to fake visitors or malware jacked human beings. the former would get a benign looking website, while the latter would get bombarded with auto clicking ads.
this kicked off the billion dollar arms race called online advertising fraud.
I'm not here to shed a tear for big money corps bleeding money. the real fallout lay somewhere else, but for that you have to understand that you never really saw the real internet, you only saw your corner and the one that was personalized for you.
but if you ever had the pleasure of watching daytime TVs or off channels and witnessing the ads, you could kind of infer what kind of audience must be watching these shows generally. from quite clear rip offs to magic number lotteries and television fortune telling, these sorts of programming was aimed at the most gullible, bought for pennies, where the smallest audience portion had to be converted into a money making operation.
...and with audience segmentation and data gathering, that was now possible at unprecedented scale, automatically. so big was the scale in fact, that it gave birth to an entire new beast of an industry called affiliate marketing, where instead of a regular payroll, you'd get a cut of the sale should you figure out an angle on where to push whatever fucking bullshit the vendors were offering to whoever the fuck would be dumb enough to click on an ad and buy. (the funniest story I recall was someone pulling five figures a month because he figured out that if you buy ads on anime-hentai pages and sell PUA shit courses and e-books you'd make a killing)
at any rate, affiliate marketing brought with it the killer landing page, the thing that's supposed to hammer the nail in the coffin once you get through the banner ad. the earliest form of deceptiveness in memory comes from various pirate sites, that had fake download buttons as banner ads and virus alerts as the landing pages. but then at some point, some schmuck realized that for certain type of products, like diet pills or forex trading or whatever, the best lander is in fact a fake news page that comes packed with comments and all. that would convert like crazy, because it had the appearance of social proof.
until at least the lawsuits came raining down, and these sorts of landing pages and campaigns for being banned left right and centre on all platforms. which just launched a new arms race as the campaigns would be disguised for the bots doing the checkups, and aged facebook profiles would start selling for like 5K USD - these people were making 30-40k a day, they could afford to spend that much to continue running the shop.
speaking of facebook - it came just about the right time for the shit to brew max total. first they were unprecedented in the amount of data they were getting off of their users, and they came just in time to catch the full swing of what we call the 'responsive web' - that no user at the same time would see the same thing on their page, it was all allocated through an intricate web of recommendations, running real time, based on previously gathered and forecast behavioral data.
it also ran on one simple premise: take over the starting page position from google for most people, then they do not have to justify, ever, any ad spend that takes place on their platform, as long as it performs. furthermore, it was completely lacking any revenue share sort of scheme (save for the short period of facebook gaming, see Zynga), thus there was no incentive for the amount of bot traffic that the previous internet era had bred. instead, it came with an entirely different one - bots that would offer social proof in the way of shares and likes, but would not directly risk the business model, thus giving no incentive for facebook to fight them. (note that google didn't do much jack shit either besides indiscriminately penalizing websites it deemed suspicious when they reached critical payout thresholds)
the rest of the story you kind of sort of know. how the obama campaign was brilliant in using the new social media to inspire hope and blah blah blah, kicking the door open for big money politics who could hire the best snake oil salesmen in the market, who had the data and as you can see from the above, had the ethical standards of a shoe. at around 2014-2015 the press (the mainstream media) started to raise question about the duopoly, the buzzword of filter bubbles started appearing, not entirely unrelated to the fact that facebook by this time cannibalized their traffic with a fucking embedded share / like button and started charging money for them to reach their own audience. after 2016 the cries of fake news were everywhere, because there was no online space left which everyone was viewing the same way, and you had no way to verify what the person next to you was looking at.
since then, we've all become grandpa yelling at the television set, with nobody around us seeing what we're seeing on the screen, so we're being accused as bots and looking for bots under the carpet.
but it's been a long way coming, and the bots are honestly the least of our worries. trust me, I went bankrupt over that one. truth or fake doesn't even begin to describe the magnitude of the problem: more like we entered the phase where every word, event or picture is defined by who ever the fuck wins the auction over it, as the marketers of human attention grind the gears of the money mill without even understanding how fast they're digging towards hell.
don't believe me? look around the marketing and advertising related subs these days. the priests are eating the indulgences, and we're only now entering the period of deep fakes, good algo generated audio and good enough NLP. and in the meantime, the shadowrunners running up between two corp headquarter-highrises are skinning your belief systems.
so the best you can do is really, not litter the remnants of cyberspace which are not being mined, astroturfed or being pulled apart by the algos. no human connections on a nuclear trash heap mate.
submitted by gergo_v to sorceryofthespectacle [link] [comments]

So you wanna trade Forex? - tips and tricks inside

Let me just sum some stuff up for you newbies out there. Ive been trading for years, last couple of years more seriously and i turned my strategies into algorithms and i am currently up to 18 algorithms thats trading for me 24/7. Ive learned alot, listened to hundreds of podcasts and read tons of books + research papers and heres some tips and tricks for any newbie out there.

  1. Strategy - How to... When people say "you need a trading strategy!!" Its because trading is very hard and emotional. You need to stick to your rules at all times. Dont panic and move your stop loss or target unless your rules tell you to. Now how do you make these rules? Well this is the part that takes alot of time. If your rules are very simple (for example: "Buy if Last candles low was the lowest low of the past 10 candles." Lets make this a rule. You can backtest it manually by looking at a chart and going back in time and check every candle. or you can code it using super simple software like prorealtime, MT4 ++ Alot of software is basicly "click and drag" and press a button and it gives you backtest from 10-20-30 years ago in 5 seconds. This is the absolute easiest way to backtest rules and systems. If your trading "pure price action" with your drawn lines and shit, the only way to truly backtest that kind of trading is going in a random forex pair to a random point in time, could be 1 year ago, 1 month ago, 5 years ago.. and then you just trade! Move chart 1 candle at a time, draw your lines and do some "actual trading" and look at your results after moving forward in the chart. If you do not test your strategy your just going in blind, which could be disaster.. Maybe someone told u "this is the correct way to trade" or "this strategy is 90% sure to win every trade!!!" If you think you can do trading without a strategy, then your most likely going to look back at an empty account and wonder why you moved that stop loss or why you didnt take profit etc.. and then your gonna give up. People on youtube, forums, interwebz are not going to give you/sell you a working strategy thats gonna make you rich. If they had a working strategy, they would not give it away/sell it to you.
  2. Money management - How to.... Gonna keep this one short. Risk a small % of your capital on each trade. Dont risk 10%, dont risk 20%. You are going to see loosing trades, your probably gonna see 5-10 loss in a row!! If your trading a 1000$ account and your risking 100$ on each trade (10%) and you loose 5 in a row, your down -50% and probably you cant even trade cus of margin req. Game over.. Now how does one get super rich, super fast, from risking 1-3% of your account on each trade?? Well heres the shocking message: YOU CANT GET RICH FAST FROM TRADING UNLESS YOUR WILLING TO GO ALL IN! You can of course go all in on each trade and if you get em all right, you might get 1000%, then you go all in 1 more time and loose it all... The whole point of trading is NOT going bust. Not loosing everything, cus if you loose it all its game over and no more trading for you.
  3. Find your own trading style.... Everyone is different. You can have an average holding period of 1 month or you could be looking at a 1 min chart and average holding time = 10 minutes. For some, less volatility helps them sleep at night. For others, more volatility gives them a rush and some people crave this. There is no "correct" timeframes, or holding periods, or how much to profit or how much to loose. We are all individuals with different taste in risk. Some dont like risk, others wanna go all in to get rich over night. The smart approach is somewhere in the middle. If you dont risk anything, your not gonna get anything. If you risk everything, your most likely going to loose everything. When people are talking about trading style, this is kinda what that means.
  4. There are mainly 2 ways to trade: Divergence and Convergence. Or in other words: Mean reversion or trend following. Lets talk about them both: Trend following is trying to find a trend and stay with the trend until its over. Mean reversion is the belief that price is too far away from the average XX of price, and sooner or later, price will have to return to its average/mean (hence the name: MEAN reversion). Trend following systems usually see a lower winrate (30-40% winrate with no money management is not uncommon to see when backtesting trend following systems.. You can add good money management to get the winrate % higher. Why is the % winrate so low? Well a market, whatever that market is, tend to get real choppy and nasty right after a huge trend. So your gonna see alot of choppy fake signals that might kill 5-6 trades in a row, until the next huge trend starts which is going to cover all the losses from the small losses before the trend took off. Then you gotta hold that trade until trade is done. How do you define "when trend starts and stops"? Well thats back to point 1, find a strategy. Try defining rules for an entry and exit and see how it goes when you backtest it. For mean reversion the win % is usually high, like 70-90% winrate, but the average winning trade is alot smaller than the average loosing trade. this happens because you are basicly trying to catch a falling knife, or catch a booming rocket. Usually when trading mean reversion, waiting for price to actually reverse can very often leave you with being "too late", so you kinda have to find "the bottom" or "the top" before it actually has bottomed/ topped out and reversed. How can you do this you ask? Well your never going to hit every top or every bottom, but you can find ways to find "the bottom-ish" or "the top-ish", thens ell as soon as price reverts back to the mean. Sometimes your gonna wish you held on to the trade for longer, but again, back to point 1: Backtest your rules and figure that shit out.

Read these 4 points and try to follow them and you are at least 4 steps closer to being a profitable trader. Some might disagree with me on some points but i think for the majority, people are going to agree that these 4 points are pretty much universal. Most traders have done or are doing these things every day, in every trade.
Here is some GREAT material to read: Kevin Davey has won trading championship multiple times and he has written multiple great books, from beginner to advanced level. Recommend these books 100%, for example: Building winning algorithmic trading systems" will give you alot to work with when it comes to all 4 of the above points. Market wizards, Reminiscences of a stock operator are 2 books that are a great read but wont give you much "trading knowledge" that you can directly use for your trading. Books on "The turtles" are great reading. Then you have podcasts and youtube. I would stay away from youtube as much as possible when it comes to "Heres how to use the rsi!!!" or "this strategy will make you rich!!". Most youtube videoes are made by people who wanna sell you a course or a book. Most of this is just pure bullshit. Youtube can very harmfull and i would honestly advice about going there for "strategy adivce" and such. Podcasts tho are amazing, i highly recommend: Better systems trader, Chat with traders, Top traders unplugged, We study billionairs, to name a few :)
Also, on a less funny note.. Please realize that you are, and i am, real fucking stupid and lazy compared to the actual pro's out there. This is why you should not go "all in" on some blind stupid strategy youve heard about. This is why this is indeed VERY FUCKING HARD and most, if not everyone has busted an account or two before realizing just this. Your dumb.. your not going to be super rich within 1 year.. You can not start with 500$ account and make millions! (some might have been able to do this, but know that for every winner, theres 999 loosers behind him that failed... Might work fine first 5 trades, then 1 fuckup tho and ur gone..
And lastly: Try using a backtesting software. Its often FREE!!! (on a demo account) and often so simple a baby could use it. If your trading lines and such there exists web broweser "games" and softwares that lets you go "1 and 1 candle ahead" in random forex pairs and that lets you trade as if its "real" as it goes.
A big backtesting trap however is backtesting "losely" by just drawing lines and looking at chart going "oh i would have taken this trade FOR SURE!! I would have made so much money!!" however this is not actually backtesting, its cherry picking and its biased beyond the grave, and its going to hurt you. Try going 1 candle at a time doing "real and live" trades and see how it goes.

Bonus point!!
many people misunderstands what indicators like the RSI is telling you. Indeed something is "overbought" or "oversold" but only compared to the last average of xx amounts of bars/candles.
It doesn't tell you that RIGHT NOW is a great time to sell or buy. It only tells you that the math formula that is RSI, gives you a number between 1-100, and when its above 70 its telling you that momentum is up compared to the last average 14 candles. This is not a complete buy/sell signal. Its more like a filter if anything. This is true for MOST indicators. They INDICATE stuff. Dont use them as pure buy/sell signals.. At least backtest that shit first! Your probably gonna be shocked at the shitty results if you "buy wehn rsi is undeer 30 and sell when RSI is above 70".

Editedit: Huge post already, why not copy paste my comment with an example showing the difference in trend following vs mean reversion:
The thing about trend following is that we never know when a trade starts and when it ends. So what often happens is that you have to buy every breakout going up, but not every breakout is a new trend. Lets do an example. Check out the photo i included here: https://imageshost.eu/image/image.RcC

THE PHOTO IS JUST AN EXAMPLE THAT SHOWS WHY A TYPICAL TREND FOLLOWING STRATEGY HAVE A "LOW" WINRATE.
THE PHOTO IS NOT SHOWING AN EXAMPLE OF MY STRATEGIES OR TRADING.

  1. We identify the big orange trend up.
  2. We see the big break down (marked with the vertical red line) this is telling us we are not going higher just yet. Our upwards trend is broken. However we might continue going up in a new trend, but when will that trend come?
  3. We can draw the blue trend very earyly using highs and lows, lines up and down. Then we begin to look for breakouts of the upper blue line. So every time price breaks upper blue line we have to buy (cus how else are we going to "catch the next trend going up?)
As you can see we get 5 false breakouts before the real breakout happens!
Now if you could tell fake breakouts from real breakouts, your gonna be rich hehe. For everyone else: Take every signal you can get, put a "tight" stop loss so in case its a fake signal you only loose a little bit. Then when breakout happens as you can clearly see in chart, your going to make back all the small losses.
So in this example we fail 5 times, but get 1 HUGE new trend going further up. This 1 huge trade, unless we fuck it up and take profits too early or shit like that, is going to win back all those small losses + more.
This is why trend following has a low winrate. You get 5 small loss and 1 big win.

Now lets flip this! Imagine if your trading Mean reversion on all the same red arrows! So every time price hits the blue line, we go short back to the bottom (or middle) again! You would have won 5 trades with small profits, but on that last one you would get stopped out so hard. Meaning 5 small wins, 1 big loss (as some have pointed out in comments, if you where trading mean reverting you would wanna buy the lows as well as short the tops - photo was suppose to show why trend following strategies have a lower % winrate.)

Final edit: sorry this looks like a wall of text on ur phones.
submitted by RipRepRop to Forex [link] [comments]

【翻译Quora上一篇问答】中国是否正在面临一次银行危机(谈到房地产) by phoebeDD on 2016-10-04

Is China really facing a banking crisis? What are its origins?
(中国是否正在面对一次银行危机?其根源又是什么?)



According to a recent article titled China facing full-blown banking crisis, world's top financial watchdog war
ns published in the Telegraph:
(根据近期电讯文章报道:“世界顶级金融观察者发出警告:中国正在面临全面的银行危机”)
China has failed to curb excesses in its credit system and faces mounting risks of a full-blown banking crisis
(中国已对债务违约失去控制,他们正在面对随之而来的全面性银行危机)
(中国债务/GDP 占比图)


Financial Crises

International Economics

The Economy

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Robin Daverman, Dealmaker
Written Sep 27


Ah, but maybe you want to look around a bit and see how China’s total debt is compared with other economies, like this?
(你可能想看看其他经济体与中国的债务情况相比是怎么样的,如下图)

(G10债务分布图)
If you put China’s data on this chart, it will be somewhere around Canada and New Zealand. Guess Which Country Has Debt Of Nearly 1000% Of GDP... Shocking, isn’t it?
如果你将中国的数据插入上图进行比较的话,中国的数据大约会在加拿大和新西兰之间。猜猜看哪个国家债务大约是自己GDP的10倍....(英国)非常震惊吧
UK has almost 1000% Debt-to-GDP ratio, compared with China’s < 300% Debt-to-GDP ratio, mostly because of that over-sized financial debt - at the end of the day, the government must stand behind it. On top of that, the UK has no resource to sell, hardly any industry left, going through a divorce with EU, and almost never ever meets her fiscal targets. And yet, UK, with its near 1000% debt-to-GDP ratio, is still viewed as the gold standard among safe havens. PRESENTING: The Rosetta Stone Of The Entire Sovereign Debt Crisis Why? Because UK issues debt in her own currency. And who prints the pound? The UK government.
英国的债务/GDP占比将近1000%而中国只是小于300%,其原因是其过于庞大的金融债务——政府最终将不得不为之站台。在此之上,英国没用可出售的资源,没有任何本国工业,正在脱离欧盟,而且英国基本上从来没有达成其财务目标。即使如此,英国仍然被某些传媒视为安全经济体的黄金标准。其原因就是英债都以英镑的方式结算。那么是谁印英镑的呢?英国政府。
Then you take a look at Japan, wow that’s 600%+ debt-to-GDP ratio! But - Japan’s debt is not only mostly internal, in Japanese Yen, but also with 0% or even negative interest. You can roll this kind of debt over practically forever. That’s why people have been yelling about Japanese debt for the last 20 years, and nothing happens.
然后你看看日本,将近600%的债务/GDP占比!但是,日本的债务几乎都是内部的,以日元的形式出售的债务,而且日本是0利率甚至是负利率。实际上这种债务你可以无限积累下去(经济常识:如果是负利率,政府只要保持债务不变,多出来的部分会自行消失)。这就是为啥人们对日债担心了20年但屁事没有发生。
Then you take a look at those economies that have blown up on debt:
Argentina: Government/Sovereign debt in USD, with jurisdiction in New York!Greece: Government/Sovereign debt in Euro, with jurisdiction in Brussels!Iceland: External financial debt → nationalized into Government/Sovereign debt in USD and Euro alone was 700%+ GDP in 2008, with jurisdiction in New York and Brussels.
然后你看看那些因债务问题毁掉的经济体:
阿根廷:政府/主权债务以美元形式结算,其裁判权在纽约!希腊:政府/主权债务以欧元方式结算,其裁判权在布鲁塞尔!冰岛:外部金融债务→债务国有化后2008年政府/主权债务以美元和欧元的形式达到GDP的700%,其裁判权在纽约和布鲁塞尔
Then you look at China, with her debt almost entirely internal, in Chinese RMB to Chinese citizens, government debt at 55%, lower than the US, Japan, and EU average, in her own currency. China’s external debt is about 9% of GDP, globally ranked 184th (less than North Korea, similar to Kosovo) - anyway you look at it, it’s hardly the kind of material to make a banking crisis. China is borrowing a little bit from her own piggy bank. Argentina/Greece/Iceland were borrowing a lot from the Mafia.
然后你看看中国,中国的债务基本都是内部以人民币结算的。中国政府债务只占总债务的55%,比美国,日本和欧盟都要低,再次强调,其债务以人民币结算。中国外部债务只占GDP的9%,全球排行184位(比朝鲜低,比科索沃高)。无论怎么看,你都不会看到中国有任何银行危机的迹象。中国只是向其国内贪心的银行借钱。阿根廷/希腊/冰岛可是像美国欧盟这些黑手党借钱。
PS: The most significant increase in China’s debt is in the financial sector, driven by rising real estate price (which means higher value of housing loans). Right now, the Chinese government is basically using it as a tool to do macro-economic engineering. The goal is to cap urban growth in top tier cities (Beijing, Shanghai, etc.) and push the economic growth to second- and third- tier cities (Hangzhou, the city that just hosted G20, is an example.http://www.g20.org/English/Hangzhou/About/index.html Now you can look back and see why the Chinese government decided to host G20 in a city nobody has ever heard of). This is clearly stated by the Chinese government like 100 times since last year in the official news channels. The reason? Top tier Chinese cities like Shanghai (25 million) already have more city residents than the whole nation of Australia! The metropolitan area of Shanghai (44 million) has more people than the entire population of Canada! In one city! Beijing’s population grew by 8 million within the last decade! The place is simply full.List of cities in China by population and built-up area
PS: 中国最显著的债务增长是在其金融领域内不断升高的房价造成的(不断增高的房贷造成债务问题)。现在中国政府正在利用房价作为宏观经济调控的工具。其目的是限制一线城市的城市化进程和加速二三线城市的发展(刚刚举办了G20的杭州就是个例子,现在你就能知道为啥中国政府将G20放在一个没人听说过的城市举行了)。这些政策中国政府已经在官媒上宣布了无数次。原因就是一线城市,例如上海(2500万人口),其居民数量比阿根廷全国人口还要多!上海都市圈(4400万人口)的人口数量比加拿大全国还要多!北京人口数量在过去的10年内增长了800万!这些城市的人口数量已经饱和了。
In addition to real estate prices, the Chinese government is also doing stuff like restricting residents permits, disallowing second or third homes, even restricting jobs to local residents, everything to say “this place is full. We have these other nice choices, with lower housing prices. Go there.” Young people complaining about housing prices in tier-one cities? But that’s the whole point. The debt you have to take on to live in tier-one cities SHOULD SCARE YOU OFF. The Chinese government is trying to stop the influx of people pouring into tier-one cities, and get these smart and energetic youths to go build two, three, four, five. … more Shanghai’s in other parts of China. 1.4 billion people can’t all fit into tier-one cities.
除了以房地产为手段,中国政府也加强控制了居住证的发放,禁止第二/三套房买入甚至对本地居民的工作种类进行限制,这些都是为了表达一个意思:这些地方都人满为患了。二三线城市有更低的房价和更好的生活条件,快点去那里吧!年轻人都在抱怨一线城市的高房价?但这就是中国政府想要的。你在一线城市生存需要的代价会把你吓退。中国政府正在尝试控制一线城市的人口流入而让有技术和充满活力的年轻人去建设二三四五线城市——让更多的上海出现在国家的其他地方。14亿人口是没可能全部都聚集在一线城市的。
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Paul Denlinger, Involved in China economics study
Written Sep 27


There is too much debt, and a lot of it is likely to turn into bad debt, but that does not equal a banking crisis.
是因为中国贷款太多了,而这些贷款大多数会变成不良贷款,但这些都不等银行危机
Banking crisis may be a nice term to bandy around and get clicks and headlines, but does not really explain what is going on.
银行危机或许是一个十分吸引眼球的头条,但是根本就不能解释实际的情况
There was a lot of debt financing, especially after the 2008 subprime mortgage crisis in the US. In order to keep the economy on a steady keel, the Chinese government, through its banks, pumped money to Chinese state-owned enterprises, in order to keep high employment and maintain an image of “growth”. A lot of this money then found its way into the underground banking system through “wealth management products” and other means. A lot of this has turned into bad debt.
中国政府有过很多次债务融资,特别是08年美国次贷危机之后。为了稳住经济增长,中国政府通过银行将大量人民币注入到国企内以维持就业率和高增长的形象。但这些钱最终大都以理财产品和其他形式流进了地下钱庄。这些大部分都变成了不良贷款。
Another problem area, which frequently overlaps with the “wealth management products” is the local government financing vehicle used to fund local property development, which I have discussed here: Paul Denlinger's answer to Why does China have so many ghost towns?
另一个有问题的领域,和“理财产品”有莫大关联的,就是地方政府为当地基础建设所采用的金融工具(我在这个地方有详细的分析:https://www.quora.com/Why-does-China-have-so-many-ghost-towns/answePaul-Denlinger?srid=tR&share=22b99cfc
What is likely to happen in China is that growth will slow down in some areas, while there will be certain newer parts of the economy which will continue to grow. If the Chinese government is able to support the newer parts of the economy and help them to grow, while cutting back on loans to the weaker parts of the economy, it may be able to handle this transition better.
最可能发生的情况就是中国的经济增长将会放缓,但是肯定会用新的增站点。如果中国政府能支持新的增长点而且能减低夕阳工业的不良贷款率,那么或许能更好地度过过渡期。
This is exactly what the Chinese government is trying to do and you can read about it here:Here is how China is going to quietly save its economy
这些正是中国政府正在尝试去做的,你可以读读这个文章了解一下:http://www.scmp.com/news/china/economy/article/2022491/china-deploys-policy-banks-stealth-mission-stimulate-growth
So, if you are expecting there to be a dramatic run on the banks, and the Chinese people to take to the streets and overthrow the Chinese Communist Party, and become a full-blown democracy like Taiwan, Japan or South Korea, you are very likely to be disappointed.
所以,如果你是期待一次强烈的bank run(自行百度啥是bank run),然后中国人民上街推翻TG,中国大陆变成与台湾,日本韩国一样的政体,那么你要失望了。
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Nikhil Ambhorkar, Self studied Finance.
Written Sep 26


Is China facing a Banking crisis?
中国是在面临一个银行危机吗?
Yes.

Is it facing a full blown Banking crisis?
中国正在面临一个全面性的银行危机吗?
No.

Combined debt of China is almost 300% of its GDP. But the the categorized in 4 parts as it is shown in the image with the question too.
中国的总债务大概是GDP的300%。但是分在了如图所示的4个领域内。
The corporate debt has the lion's portion of the total debt. The household debt and non corporate debt are nothing to worry about because it is less many other developed countries and has some room to grow.
公司债务在总债务中占了大头。个人债务和非公司债务根本没啥可担心的因为这些比大多数发达国家还要低所以还有增长的空间。
Government Debt is not too big when compared to standards set by many global institutions like IMF, World Bank, etc.
政府债务以多数国际组织,例如世行和IMF,设定得标准来看其实不高。
The only major concern which is of a serious magnitude is the corporate debt. This is also reiterated by many economists.
最主要的关注点就是公司债务了。许多经济学家都重申了这点无数次了。
Now the problem with China is that data that comes out of major Chinese institutions is murky so their are many different types of estimates by many different institutions but the common theme in it is corporate debt and its size.
中国最大的问题就是中国国内组织公布的数据来源不清晰所以不同的国际组织对中国经济的实际情况估算会不一样。但所有组织最关心的都是中国的公司债务与其规模。
Corporate debt consists of debt owned by state owned corporations and private corporations. Private corporations in China are generally crowded out by the state owned corporations because of connections and political agenda.
公司债务又分成了国企和私企的债务。中国私企大多数收到国企排挤,这是有政体造成的。
Many state owned corporations have invested into unproductive projects as a result of excess boost given by government after 2008 to prop up the economy. This has resulted in a huge amount of NPAs. So, in all the major problem is state owned corporations piling up huge amount of debt. To solve this problem, the government tried to convert the debt into shares which the bank owns and can recover money through profit dividends but this was one of the causes for last year's stock market crash.
在08年过度的经济刺激政策下,很多国企在许多无效益项目上投了许多钱。这造成了大量的无效能资产。所以,最大的问题是国企堆积了大量债务。为了解决这个问题,政府正在尝试将国企的债务转化为股份,那么银行就能将债务转化为红利而最终将债务收回了。但这造成了上年的股灾.....
Hence, it is a big crisis but not the one government cannot handle with so much trade surplus and forex reserves. But actions are definitely needed to stop it from growing into a bigger problem.
所以,这是一个危机但仍然是政府能控制的,毕竟中国政府有大量贸易顺差和外汇储备。但是仍然需要实际行动来防止事态的扩展。
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submitted by robot301_01 to kfq [link] [comments]

Forex Megadroid - Can Forex Megadroid Invade the Forex Market

The invention of robots has brought convenience and superficial Forex Millennium Review intelligence to mankind. With its reliability and functionality being constantly put into test, it continues to improved and the features keep being enhanced. For the case of Forex Megadroid, the robotics invention system focuses on numeral and logical skills. This robot is programmed with different modules to be able to process data through numbers, patters, trends, graphs and other presentations. It compares and contrasts each transaction in the online forex trading and later on decides on its own.People are human. They get tired and become lazy at times. But during those times when important trades should be made, even without their presence a smart stock move would be possible trough auto-piloting. It means that another person or program will do the online trading for you. Your trades are automatically placed as if you are the one doing it.
With this megadroids deployed in the foreign currency trading market, can you still identify which robot is smarter than the other That would be difficult to answer since what you can control is your own robot alone. It is still a must to build relationship between the program and you and it is by checking the market once in a while to learn your earning progress and be updated about the trend. It is still important for a human being to see and point the volatility if there is any. After all, the forex megadroid's job is to help you and not to replace you. Technology should be use effectively to maximize the result. The program incorporated to this special software should be also absorb by its users so as to be synchronized along the online currency trading process.
Information about live forex trading is also available for viewing over the internet. It would greatly help to check the record and reports generated by your software daily. Learning the tips and tricks from AI units has been proven favorable to the users. You have to keep in mind that entering Forex Trading also entails a lot of patience and understanding so as to stay long in business. Impeccable machines would not be possible without our own creative minds.
First of all, you need to make sure your trading system fits your trading personality; otherwise you will find it hard to follow it. Every trader has different needs and goals, thus there is no system that perfectly fits all traders. You need to make your own research on various trading styles and technical indicators until you find a concept that perfectly works for you. Make sure you know the nature of whatever technical indicator used. Secondly, incorporate price action into your system. So you only take long signals if the price behavior tells you the market wants to go up, and short signals if the market gives you indication that it will go down.

https://asrightasrain.co/forex-millennium-review/
submitted by beulamary to u/beulamary [link] [comments]

Some things I learned over the years

Since there is new blood coming here, I believe it'd be nice to share some experience. I'm lazy and I'm drunk, so I'll be short but feel free to ask anything if it's unclear.
What I consider most important but not really obvious while learning:
submitted by Dinosaur_Supervisor to Forex [link] [comments]

My crypto story

I want to share my story over how I became a Master crypto trader I first heard about Bitcoin a couple years ago from a twitter account called Trutherbot. This twitter account played a big role in waking me to the truths of the federal reserve and the worldwide central banking scam. Nevertheless everytime he would post something about bitcoin I was to lazy to actually watch a 10 minute video on what it was.
Fast forward to summer 2017 Im working and going to school at the same time hating both at the same time. While I learned some valuable lessons and hd great teachers in college I saw Most universities as outdated institutions more focused on making money and having a succesful football team that actually keeping up to date with the age of information where most careers will have to be relearned by the time you get that paper. To top it all off I would have to go into debt to pay a 4 year university tuition. My job on the other hand was HUGE on "SELL THIS SELL THAT SELL EVERYTHING" It always made me feel like a total cuck seeing poor ladies with their fast food uniform on count out cash to try and pay their bills and it be my job to try to sell them on something I knew they couldn't afford. Point being I felt like a total shill working there and I wanted out. By habit I fall sleep watching a documentary about anything I find on youtube. I watched a youtuber who mentioned Bitcoin which was what eventually made me say " What the hell is this bitcoin thing" and decided to do some research. It was love at first sight. I saw Bitcoin as a sword forged from liberty itself to cut off the tentacles of historical bank oppression and create a financial revolution #DecentralizeEverything. I was so ecstatic; I felt like I had discovered a digital California gold rush besides the technological and financial revolution I was witnessing. I became huge on Bitcoin, almost all my twitter and facebook posts were about cryptocurrency and I kept telling everyone how this was the future. In those summer months I would get out what I could of my paycheck and put it into bitcoin. As the boom continued I continued to HODL and make more money. Then it hit me. "people who dedicate their life to trading stocks or forex it isnt luck its a strategy, and any strategy can be learned and applied.
As I hodled I called my family back in Mexico and told them all about it and my mom sent me 1k to invest it for her. The more I grew in knowledge the more comfortable I felt trading. Over time due to my posts on social media more and more people kept messaging me asking me about bitcoin and how they could invest. This made me decide to start a hedge fund and run it month by month. This was it. My exit from being a tax slave to the dollar fictional system. I quit my job, dropped out of school sold my car and moved back to Mexico with my fam so I could focus full time to trading with maximum efficiency. Fast forward to November 2017. I have 12.5 k invested and my sister turns 15, Her Dad sends her 6k as a birthday present and my mom gives me 4k to invest it for her. Total 16.5 k for the month. One night, I see BCH is pumping like hell. Sticking to trader discipline I tell myself theres no way IM buying on such a high, It goes from 300 to 400 to 500 to 600 to 1lk bam bam bam. This at the same time BTC is going down. I scamble to social media and see everyone talking about "The Cashening". I told myself I wouldent switch unless it went over 2.5k. Within 15 minutes I saw my fund drop 50% in price and i dumped. Now sitting with 50% of what I had I knew I had to make a powerplay to end the month positive. I scoured altcoins for that answer and found XLM. I even posted an analyses on my tradingview. telling everyone to buy at 491 and predicted a 57-120% increase . 4 hours before The pump I set a stop loss on XLM and go to sleep just in case. I wake up to find myself stop lossed with no XLM and it being around 1k sats. again , devastation. I wasent about to end the month negative and dissapoint all my Friends and family. I learned how to margin trade. I made an account on Bitmex and transfered my remaining funds in there.
Fast forward to today. I see BTC forming a pennant after breaking resistance and decide to all in 25x leverage. Gone, everything is gone. I apologize for the rushed ending but im still in shock. Im sorry for the clickbait title but I want this story to serve as an example to anyone who wants to become a "trader" in crypto. My advice is never go all in and just hodl; dont trade. or you could end up like me. A fool who let greed blind him. I dont want anyone else to experience the stress and anguish I felt and still feel. This all happened not more than 2 hours ago. Please be careful.
submitted by BlackPuma_ to CryptoCurrency [link] [comments]

A framework for Investment/Trading as a mid-20-yo

Hi Everyone,
Brand new to reddit here (not sure how I escaped this deep deep black hole of internet for so long). I hope this is the right place.
First, I am here to distil what I have learned over the years of being a fool of the market. I’ll then try to piece together the checks and balances I have decided necessary to maintain long term success in investment management and trading. I will break it into two distinct product lines: Cash Equities and CFDs (index/forex) via FXCM/IG etc, as well as a General Risk Management section.
I have read extensively, like the usual Jack DSchwagger series, Stock Operator etc. If you haven’t read these I suggest you start there first.
General Risk Management and Setup:
Positioning/Size I cannot tell you how often I have been burned with poor position management across either cash equities or CFDs. I distinctly recall putting on a massive “no brainer” trade against the EUUSD in 2014 December. Entry 1.224. I got stopped out and lost 50% of my trading capital in 4 hours due to a margin call. I wasn’t even trying to scalp, I just wanted to get very, very rich. (I would’ve too if it weren’t for those meddling kids). The other side of this is that I express my cash equities portfolios in the form of “high conviction” trades/investments. Take A2M.AX. Average Entry of 6.XX through averaging up. It currently sits at more than 70% of my portfolio, even though I have a 12month timeframe. I have a higher conviction on Cash Equities with a far longer time frame than I do CFDs. Hence I position heavier.
There is a 2% rule floating out there that I semi-agree with. I’d like to hear your thoughts on this, as I would describe myself as much more of a risk taker and less systematic than I would like. I understand also there are more schools of thought, mechanical, pure TA etc etc. But no matter what fire you choose to play with, I think positioning has been the reason why I have lost money over 90% of the time, even if directionally I am 75% right within my time frame.
How do you guys balance your portfolio for maximum returns? Thoughts on 3-4 stock portfolios? Thoughts on CFD margin/position sizing for TA/discretionary? ( I know it will vary by style but would love to hear).
Trading Diary When I first waded into CFDs, I knew I wanted to keep a record of all my trades, in the hopes that I can reflect on what technical/fundamental ideas I opened and closed my trades in. A trading diary and reflection on those trades is huge in order for you to stop repeating really stupid mistakes.
Until recently I never had the mindset of actually sorting through the wins and losses of my past trades. YOU MUST HAVE A SYSTEM of going through the past days/weeks worth of trades. Reflection and reinforcement is key.
I think starting a blog for yourself is not a bad idea. It may not have readership, but it carries the important function of reflection and learning. Just as I am doing this very moment..
Research/Information Funnel The Economist. Period. *infinity. Start here. (Especially relevant for macro)
When I first started in Cash Equities I made the novice error of joining forums. Granted there is some great content that someone else more experienced has found and analysed, thus cutting down your research time. Right? Wrong.
I think it actually causes a shift in your behaviour to trust and rely on their primary opinion. If they’re right even once, you will now face a bias and think of them as a beacon of truth. Read Thinking Fast, Thinking Slow. As humans we’re inherently very lazy. Don’t let it make you take shortcuts.
I put this in general risk because information and bias is a HUGE risk to how you formulate your trading or investment thesis.
Even I noticed that the majority of my information sources including twitter liked to preach the “melt up” of the spooz etc. Confirmation Bias exists, especially in Investing. These guys had been talking of a market that was too strong for at least 2 years. Even though it finally semi-happened, they were still wrong for two years! Do you believe it would be valuable to find a peer group IRL as an additional source of information/debate?
Timeframe This closely relates to position/sizing. Timeframe goes hand in hand with positioning and how we wish to express risk. A low beta Banking stock with healthy dividends might warrant a larger position size if you look at it from a 10 year view point. The spooz on a 20 year view point would warrant a very different mindset when compared to a tick chart.
I have found it more helpful when thinking about timeframe as not “predicting” when I think something would happen, but use it as a matter of determining sizing.Am I really comfortable TSLA as 50% of my portfolio for 20 years? Hmm
Health Something I feel understated and forgotten about is the fact that sitting down for 10 hours a day with your eyes following green and red isn’t healthy. A healthy body will produce far better results if your headspace is clear and your emotions are in check. I would put more than a fair share of my mistakes as being due to emotionally driven trades (lose x find 2x) or trading when my physical mind is no longer sharp. Trading and Investing is a full time endeavour. Unless you are extremely fortunate or lucky in how you express your trades and investments, it will take a lot of time and involvement to find an edge that is more than just market. *I mean, isn’t that why we are here? *
[Edit] How do you guys ensure you’re balancing work or study and investment? I find myself mostly 100% work ever since graduating uni.
This turned out far longer than I expected. I would love to hear all feedback. Put me in my place! This is especially because I am about to commit more time to this as I bring it into a truly serious endeavour.
[Edit] Removed personal info
submitted by bertgrozhen to investing [link] [comments]

ELI5ed version of India's Currency Crisis.

Alright people, here it is, I am now going to try and explain the whole rupee fall phenomenon as simply as I can. We're going to first try and discuss the concepts involved here and then look at what our policy makers have done. Here's hoping that you last till the end cause it was quite a lot of effort.
Why am I doing this?
I am tired of all the lame rupee fall jokes that flooded my WhatsApp last week. I am tired of all the people telling the government to 'Make it stop!' (Spoiler: It's not that simple). Also, I am going to get out in the job market soon and am too lazy to brush up my basics in a formal way. The prospect of educating fellow redditors makes it worth the effort.
Why should you read all of this?
Because you care and by the end of this, hopefully, you'll be able to talk about this in a smarter way which will potentially improve your chances with that girl.
It is likely that you may already know the answers to some of the questions here. Go right ahead and skip them because I am trying to do an ELI5 here.
Let's take it from the top.
What is a foreign exchange rate?
It is the rate at which one currency will be exchanged with another.
Why do foreign exchange rates exist?
Simply because the currency of one country will not be accepted in another. We have a lot of countries and we have a lot of currencies and judging by the feeds on facebook, people travel a lot.
Fun fact#1: The US dollar and the Euro account for approximately 50 percent of all currency exchange transactions in the world. Adding British pounds, Canadian dollars, Australian dollars, and Japanese yen to the list accounts for over 80 percent of currency exchanges altogether.
Who or what decides the exchange rate between two currencies?
On a fundamental level, The value of currency, like the price of any other good or service, depends on its demand and supply. And demand for a currency, say, the US dollar, typically comes from Indian importers, people or institutions that invest in the US and travellers to the US. All these agents require dollars for transacting in the US.
Analogously, exporters to the US, travellers to India and investor inflows supply US dollars in return for rupees to transact in India. If the demand for the rupee decreases compared to, say, the US dollar, the value of the rupee goes down, and vice-versa
So, it's all driven by market (buyers and sellers) forces?
No, There are other factors too. But we'll take them up when we're discussing the Indian context.
What role does something like RBI do in all this?
To understand this, we're going to dive into a little bit of theory. Broadly speaking, there are two ways of handling your currency's exchange rate:
A. The Floating Exchange Rate: The market determines a floating exchange rate. In other words, a currency is worth whatever buyers are willing to pay for it. This is determined by supply and demand, which is in turn driven by foreign investment, import/export ratios, inflation, and a host of other economic factors. Generally, countries with mature, stable economic markets will use a floating system. Virtually every major nation uses this system. Floating exchange rates are considered more efficient, because the market will automatically correct the rate to reflect inflation and other economic forces.
The floating system isn't perfect, though. If a country's economy suffers from instability, a floating system will discourage investment. Investors could fall victim to wild swings in the exchange rates, as well as disastrous inflation.
Did that previous paragraph ring a bell? Interestingly though, we don't follow a floating rate system.
Fun fact#2: Canada is the only country whose currency's value is determined absolutely and entirely by the foreign exchange market or as we just learned, by means of a 'floating exchange rate'. Their Central Bank has never intervened in years.
B. The Fixed or Pegged Exchange Rate: A pegged, or fixed system, is one in which the exchange rate is set and artificially maintained by the government. The rate will be pegged to some other country's dollar, usually the U.S. dollar. The rate will not fluctuate from day to day. You decree that 1 US Dollar will always be equal to 35 Rupees and that is it. Countries that have potentially unstable economies usually use a pegged system. Developing nations can use this system to prevent out-of control-inflation.
And now your thinking:
Holy shit! We can do that? Why aren't we doing that? Why don't we get our currency pegged as seen in the Fixed or Pegged Exchange Rate system?
For starters, the system can backfire. If the real world market value of the currency is not reflected by the pegged rate, a black market may spring up, where the currency will be traded at its market value, disregarding the government's peg. When people realize that their currency isn't worth as much as the pegged rate indicates, they may rush to exchange their money for other, more stable currencies. This can lead to economic disaster, since the sudden flood of currency in world markets drives the exchange rate very low. So if a country doesn't take good care of their pegged rate, they may find themselves with worthless currency.
To further explain, assume that the demand for US dollar increases. Consequently, its value increases, such that each dollar can now buy 10 rupees instead of 4 previously. To offset such an increase, the RBI pumps in sufficient amount of dollars into the market to meet the increased demand. This process ensures that the value of the dollar is restored to its original one. The central bank can supply and draw dollars from forex reserves, which is its official kitty.
Well, the problem is, we ain't got much forex reserves.
India’s forex reserves, which stand at $270 billion(As of the end of August, 2013) approximately, cannot defend the falling rupee eternally. To make sense out of that figure, let us assume that one bad day, all foreign investors in our country decide to take back their money (which is extremely unlikely). In that dire situation, the RBI would have to borrow to a tune of $215 million to pay them all back.
To make matters worse, the increasing oil imports and falling export share in the recent months have contributed significantly towards draining (the already concerning levels of) our forex reserves. The arguments above indicate that the RBI does not have sufficient cushion to strictly adhere to a fixed rate regime.
In fact, forex reserves are the only major 'reactionary tool' we have to prevent any speculation based downfall in the value of rupee.
So if Forex reserves are so damn important, why haven't we been building them up?
Actually, we have been trying to. Refer this graph. If you do a simple forex reserves News based search on Google, you'll find that the last month has seen a lot of ups and downs in it implying that the RBI is scrambling to plug the hole by raising and spending these reserves. But it's still not good enough.
But but...that is a good graph, why is it not good enough?
Enter Mr. CAD, the media's favourite buzzword
At the end of 2007, the Current Account Deficit(Mr. CAD) of India stood at $8 billion. If you refer the above graph, you'll notice that we had a forex reserve of around 300 billion by that time. That means our forex reserves were 37.5 times the CAD. For 2013, the current account deficit is at $90 billion whereas the foreign exchange reserves are down to around $270 billion. That's just around 3 times that of the CAD. That is an alarming fall.
What is a Current Account Deficit?
Occurs when a country's total imports of goods, services and transfers is greater than the country's total export of goods, services and transfers. This situation makes a country a net debtor to the rest of the world. So, evidently, it has an impact with your foreign exchange rates. A substantial current account deficit is not necessarily a bad thing for certain countries. Developing countries may run a current account deficit in the short term to increase local productivity and exports in the future.
Why is our Current Account Deficit so bad?
Simply because we get a lot of our stuff from the outside. The most significantly burdensome items that we import are Gold and Oil. The two of them together constitute almost 50% of our total imports!
Gold
No kidding, we Indians love the yellow metal. We are in fact the largest consumer of Gold in the world. No seriously, our country is single handedly responsible for upto 20% consumption of the worldwide gold consumption. It makes sense to us because not only can we show it off at social events, we can also readily sell it later. In effect, it's like a Saving from the perspective of the mango people. Most Indians are blithely unaware that gold is not locally sourced but actually imported from countries such as Switzerland and the United Arab Emirates.
Which is why we had Mr. Chidambaram 'appealing' to us. But nobody's going to listen to your appeals, Sir. My own financial security will always be more important than your CAD-MAD bullshit. Which is why we have steadily increased the import tariffs on Gold imports in an attempt to discourage gold consumption. Not very effective but it's something.
Make no mistake though, although it will be 'nice' to have people buy less gold this season, in the long run, it will save yo ass.
Fun Fact#3: "I have never bought gold at any point of time in my life. I don’t wear any jewelry — be it a ring or a chain, For me gold is just another metal, it just shines a little bit more.” - P. Chidambaram, Finance Minister of India - A country which is the largest consumer of Gold.
Contd as Comment Below Due to Character Restrictions. Continue Reading at 'Oil'
submitted by PlsDontBraidMyBeard to IndiaInvestments [link] [comments]

10-16 02:23 - 'Hurling Rocks at Caimans: A Cowboy's Tale' (self.Bitcoin) by /u/mine_myownbiz13 removed from /r/Bitcoin within 56-66min

'''
In 1991, my mother had the foresight to leave Venezuela for the United States. She sacrificed a medical profession, her family, her friends, and the comforts of her own land and culture. It was before Chavez, before communism, before famine, before societal collapse. She didn’t know it at the time (perhaps she felt it), but she was saving our lives. Recently, I was asked by her brother, my uncle, to give some words of advice to his youngest son, whom he sent to live in upstate New York earlier this year in the hopes that he might find some opportunity there. He’s 17 and fascinated by cryptocurrencies, but knows next to nothing about them. I wrote this letter for him.

Hello Cousin,
I write you in the hopes that you will take away something useful from my own experience.
There’s a saying in English that’s always stayed with me, “There’s no such thing as a free lunch.” In other words, nothing in life is easy, not money, not love, not anything. Nothing worth your time is ever going to be easy. There’s no free lunch!
I first got into trading in 2008. Your dad had heard from a friend that Citigroup stock was going to pop soon and that he should buy it. The US Stock Market can only be traded by U.S. citizens and special types of corporations, so he asked me to act as a proxy for his investment, and I did. I did it because I thought it would be a get-rich quick rich scheme that I could learn to do on my own. At this time I was in graduate school and unsure of what to do with my life. I’ve always been good at school. It’s easy for me. I had professors telling me I’d make a great scholar or a great lawyer, but at the time I was teaching middle-school English in a poor neighborhood of Miami. I had a big decision to make.
Naturally, I decided to get rich quick! I spent 2-3 months reading books on stock trading and executing simulated trades on practice accounts. I learned to work a variety of trading platforms so that I could trade several markets around the world, which I did. I quit my job in the fall of 2008 and took my entire life savings of $20,000 into the market. The broker gave me 3.5 times leverage on my money and I had $70,000 of available trading capital. When your dad made his deposit my account had a trading capacity of over $2,000,000. With that kind of margin, I was able to turn $20,000 into over $160,000 in less than 9 months! I was making over $15,000 a month. As a teacher, at the time, I think I made about $2,700 a month. So, as you can imagine, I thought I was a genius! I was getting rich quick, right?
Wrong. There’s no such thing as a free lunch. When your dad sold his share of stock being held in my account I was also forced to liquidate my own positions. I had bought call options on the future price of Apple stock, and the way that kind of trading works is that your money is locked until the future event you are betting on occurs. If you liquidate before a certain date there may be a penalty to pay. In my case, it was $35,000. After this, I had the good sense to step away for a moment, to cash out my chips and think about what came next. Also, I didn’t have a $2,000,000 trading desk anymore, and without the added margin, there was no way I could continue to trade the way I wanted to. I wanted to make medium to long term trades, because one of the first things I learned along the way is that short term trading (day-trading, scalping) is, for the most part, a scam. There are technical reasons for this, but trust me, short-term trading any market, be it cryptos, stocks, or commodities is a bad idea. You will lose money with an almost 100% guarantee.
I walked away from the stock market in 2009 with $150,000 cash but no market to trade it in. So, I did the next best thing: I bought a nice new car (in cash), took a crazy trip to Europe, and consumed over $25,000 worth of shit I didn’t need, and when it was all said and done, I went back to teaching. I taught at an even poorer neighborhood this time. I had gang members in my class. There were arrests on a monthly basis. Some of the kids had psychological problems, emotional problems, learning disabilities, and many of them were being abused at home in one way or another. This was a middle school. Twelve year-olds. I did that job and others like it because I believe in morality and in helping people. That’s the reason I’m writing you this letter, because I want to help you, and I think it's the moral thing to do. And you’ll see what I mean by that when I tell you about cryptocurrencies and the blockchain later on. Anyway, during that year of teaching I discovered a new market to trade. One that would give me 100 to 1 leverage on my money. One where I could manage a $5,000,000 trading desk with only $50,000! That market is called FOREX, and its the global “fiat” currency market. It’s the opposite of the crypto market, which is the global “digital” currency market. More on what all that means later, but for now just understand that FOREX is the most liquid and highly traded market in the world.
After the school-year ended in May of 2011, I took that summer off to research the FOREX market. I read many new books on trading, which were specific to the currency markets. I watched hundreds of hours of video on technical analysis and even more hours of “financial news,” which is mostly economic propaganda, but I won’t digress here. The point is that by late August of 2011, I was once again ready to dive head-first into trading. This time, I thought, it would be even better, because I’d have even more money to “play” with! This time, I thought, I’m going to get rich!
I’ll stop here and tell you that the journey up until this point had not been the smoothest. While trading stocks there were many days when I lost hundreds, thousands, and even tens of thousands of dollars in hours, sometimes in minutes! You may imagine the added level of stress I had to deal with because I was trading with my entire life’s savings and my wife had just given birth to our son, Sebastian. He was a toddler at the time. I’ll give you a brief example of trading’s unpredictable nature, and the unpredictability of financial markets in general: I had spent several months preparing for my first live trade. I’d read many books and practiced my ass off until I thought I was ready. I had a system, a strategy. I was going to get rich, quick! The first week I traded stocks I lost $10,000 in 3 days. I will never be able to fully articulate what it feels like lose 50% of all the money you’ve ever had in less than 72 hours. All the while knowing that if you fail, it will be your family who suffers the most.
You might be wondering: “Shit, why’d you do it?” or “Why’d you keep doing it?” That’s understandable. After all, my academic background is in history and political science, not finance and economics, not statistics. Well, cousin, I did it because I’m a cowboy. A risk-taker. I’ve always been one. I remember being four or five, at our grandfather’s farm, and lassoing calves in the cattle pen by myself. Men were around, but they let me do it. Although, in retrospect, some of those calves were twice my size and could have easily trampled me, I don’t ever remember feeling scared---I loved that shit! I remember sneaking out and walking down to the pond, then going up to the water’s edge to see if I could spot the caiman that lived there. I would even hurl rocks at it sometimes, just to see it move! Another time, I found myself alone in the dark with a 15-foot anaconda not more than a yard away, and all I could do was stare at it, not out of fear, but wonder. Again, in hindsight, probably not the best of ideas, but I’ve never been scared to follow the path laid out by my own curiosity. I am a natural risk-taker. I tell my city-slicker friends that it's because I come from a land of cowboys, where men are born tough and always ready for a challenge. Cowboys are risk-takers by nature, they have to be, the land demands it of them. There’ll be more on risk-taking and the role it plays a little later, but for now, let’s focus on FOREX and what I learned from it.
After the school-year ended in May of 2011, I took that summer off to research the FOREX market. I read many new books on trading, which were specific to the currency markets. I watched hundreds of hours of video on technical analysis and even more hours of “financial news,” which is mostly economic propaganda, but I won’t digress here. The point is that by late August of 2011, I was once again ready to dive head-first into trading. This time, I thought, it would be even better, because I’d have even more money to “play” with! This time, I thought, I’m going to get rich!
Trading FOREX was not easy. The hardest part was that it had to be done between 3:00 am - 11:00 am, because these are peak trading hours in London and New York, where the majority of the market’s money resides. This means major price moves, the price swings that can be traded, for the most part, happen during this time window. For me, this meant I had to live a type of quasi-vampiric lifestyle, waking up at 8:00 pm and going to sleep at noon, every day. At first, it takes a toll on your social life, and eventually starts to affect you mentally and emotionally. There is a certain degree of isolation that comes with it, too. You are awake when your friends and family are asleep, and asleep when they are awake. It can get lonely. However, my first six months of trading FOREX were OK. I wasn’t making $15,000 a month anymore, but I was making more than I would have been, had I been teaching. However, I had a deep-rooted feeling of uncertainty. Although I’d had some initial success in trading stocks, and now currencies, I’d always felt, at the back of my mind, that I’d just been lucky, and nothing more.
This fear materialized itself in June of 2012 when the strategy I’d been using for some time was no longer profitable. I panicked. I started experimenting with new strategies, which only made matters worse, and lead to even more panic. It is no exaggeration to say that trading is one-third mathematical, and two-thirds psychological. No amount of books, videos, or paid mentorships, which I also consumed, had prepared me for this eventual reality check: I didn’t know what the fuck I was doing. I had no clue.
I left FOREX humbled, with barely enough money to buy a decent car, much less trade any time soon. The next two years, 2013-2015, were some of the hardest of my life. Harder even than 1991-1993, which, up to that point, had been the worst couple years I’d ever experienced. Those were my first years in the United States, and they were full of hardship. A type of hardship I’d never experienced before, and never have since. Remember the school I mentioned? The one with the gangs and the troubled kids and all the poverty? Well, I attended schools just like that as a kid, too, until I turned 15. I had many more encounters with caimans and anacondas there, except now they had first names, and for some reason, were always more prone to strike! Anyway, those were tough times, but not as tough as the post-FOREX experience.
Failure at FOREX took a mental toll on me. After all, I had gambled everything, my entire future on the bet that I could earn a living as a professional trader. I realized I had failed because of my own intellectual laziness. I always knew I had been lucky, and instead of using the wonderful gift of leisure-time the universe had granted me through that initial success to fill the knowledge gaps I knew would keep me from true and long-lasting success, I let my ego convince me otherwise, and talked myself into making decisions I knew to be extremely dangerous and outside my expertise. I wanted to wrestle the caiman! Cowboy shit. Irrational, youthful folly. Needless to say, I lost 80% of my account, which was also my family’s savings, in less than four months.
Now, I had a real problem. How was I going to pay the bills? What was I going to do with my life? I was 30 years old, had a five-year old son, very little real-world work experience and a college degree in history and political science. How was I going to make money? Serious money? Enough money to help my mom retire and give my son all the advantages I never had? Enough to deliver on the promises I had made to my wife during all those years she put up with my crazy hours and wild ideas about getting rich quick? What was I going to do now? I tell you, cousin, these are the kinds of questions you will find yourself asking if you do not heed my advice.
I didn’t want to teach anymore. I didn’t want to do anything anymore. I was depressed. I had what we call here in the United States, “a quarter-life crisis.” I abused alcohol and drugs to cope with the pain of my failure. I was weak. I was unprepared for the realities of life. I did not yet understand, even at 30 years old, that there is no such thing as a free lunch. I won’t dwell on the specifics of the hardships I endured during these two years, except to say that I almost lost it all, including my life, but I’m grateful I didn't.
However, it was also during this period, 2013-2015, that I began to fill gaps in my knowledge about markets, economics, and the nature of money itself. Gaps I knew would need to be filled one way or another, if I was ever going to trade or invest in anything again. Luckily, towards the end of my FOREX days, I had come to realize there was something wrong with all the information I had been given by the mainstream media, specifically on the topics of economics and finance. I noticed that nothing they ever said about the markets turned out to be accurate, that mainstream financial “news” could not be trusted for investment purposes. It took tens of thousands of dollars in losses and several years of headaches before I learned that lesson. I’m glad I finally did.
I decided to use the last bit of money I had left to buy some gold and silver (by this time I had begun to understand the definition of sound money) and to open up a brick and mortar business. I did not want to work for anyone else, only for myself. I wanted to be an entrepreneur. The trouble was that the only business I had enough money for was a mobile car wash. So, a friend and I bought a van, some pressure cleaners, a whole bunch of soap and got to work! We were going to hustle hard, work warehouse and shopping center parking lots, save enough to reinvest into our business and go after the luxury car market. We were going to charge rich people $1000s to detail Ferraris and Lamborghinis, and it was only going to take six months, tops! Great plan, no? Easy money, right? Well, we washed cars for exactly one day before we realized what a terrible mistake we had made. It turns out car-washing is a backbreaking, low-paying, and degrading business. There’s no free lunch, remember that.
My friend and I were lucky. We quickly transitioned our business from a mobile car wash to a painting/pressure cleaning company, and had immediate success. In less than two months we were hired as subcontractors by a much larger company and I was more or less making what I had made teaching, but working for myself. After a couple of months, my partner and I were already envisioning the hiring of our first employees. Cool, right? No. About a year after we started the business, my partner, a high-school friend of mine, a guy I’d known for more than ten years, decided he didn’t want to do it anymore. That he was too tired of the hardships that come with that kind of work. Tired of making the constant sacrifices required to be successful in business. So, he quit. I lost everything I had invested, because without him, I could not operate the business on my own, and our corporate partner dropped us. I begged him not to quit. I told him that business takes time, that there’s no free lunch, and that we would be rewarded at some point for our hustle and hard work; that we would be able to hire laborers to do the work in less than 6 months, and that we would then focus on sales, and start to make some real money. He did not care. He had his own demons, and chose to steal from me and end our friendship instead of facing the hardship head-on. By this time, however, I was already used to failure, and although I was still coping with the mental stress of having failed at something I once had thought would be my profession, it still did not stop me from following my curiosity, as I always have.
It was during these years that I first learned about Bitcoin. About blockchain. About the nature of money, economic history, the effects of monetary policy on financial markets. I’d wake up at 6:00 am every day, paint houses, pressure clean dirty sidewalks and walls, spend over 2 hours commuting back home every night, and then stay up for as long as my body would allow learning about macroeconomics and the history of markets. I researched the nature of debt and gold a medium of exchange. I read about counter and Austrian economics. I became a libertarian, later, an anarchist, and, after almost two years study, I began to discover legitimate sources of financial news and information, intelligent voices that I could trust. I had acquired enough knowledge and experience to discern the truth from the propaganda, and it was during these same years, these terrible times of hardship, that I finally learned a most valuable lesson on money and markets: capital preservation is the key.
Remember, when I said we’d come back to risk-taking? Well, the trick is not to take it, but to manage it. The secret is education, knowledge. Knowledge truly is, power. Traders are only as successful as the depth of their own knowledge, because it's the only way to keep in check that inherent, paralyzing fear which “playing” with money eventually engenders. As a trader, you must have complete confidence in your “playing” abilities, and this is something only achieved through much study and practice. There’s no such thing as a free lunch, ever.
I want you to know that Bitcoin, the blockchain, and cryptocurrencies are NOT get-rich-quick schemes. They are NOT Ponzi schemes either. They are cutting-edge financial technology, and an emerging asset class. The blockchain has been compared to the agricultural revolution of the Neolithic age and the invention of writing by ancient Mesopotamians, in terms of its importance and potential impact on human civilization. It is a technology which will eventually affect and reshape almost every single industry in the global economy. In the next two decades, all types of industries will be impacted and disrupted by this technology--banking, real estate, healthcare, the legal industry, politics, education, venture capital, just to name a few! This technology allows for something called “decentralized store of value.” Basically, it allows for the creation of an alternative financial system, one where power resides in the hands of the people, instead of corrupt governments and corporations, so that currency crises like the one Venezuela has recently experienced, may one day be completely eradicated, like polio, or bubonic plague.
I will tell you that, at 17 years old, you have an amazing opportunity to set yourself up for incredible success in this brand new industry called the blockchain. There are entire professions that will be birthed into existence in the next 5, 10, and 20 years, in the same way the internet made possible millions of people around the world to work from home, wearing their pajamas, doing a million different things--things which were unimaginable to those who knew the world before the advent of the internet. Of course, it will require a great deal of work and effort on your part, but I assure you, it will be totally worth it!
Today, I am 35 years old. I run a successful ghostwriting business that I manage from the comfort of my own home. I invest exclusively in Bitcoin and precious metals, and hope to retire by the time I’m 40. Well, not really retire, but start on a much-anticipated new phase of my life, one in which I don’t have to worry about financial independence anymore.
To that end, cousin, here is my advice:
  1. Forget about getting rich quick. There’s no free lunch!
  2. Learn the English language, it is one of the tools you'll need for success.
  3. Work or go to school. Either way, dedicate yourself to learning about this new technology as much as you can, and begin to save, as much as you can, in Bitcoin.
I reviewed the website you told me about, [[link]3 , and while I respect, and to a certain extent admire what those gentlemen are doing, I can tell you, unequivocally, that taking those courses won’t turn you into a trader. It won’t make you rich quick. Far from it. In fact, there is nothing that these "warriors" will teach you, that you could not teach yourself for free at [[link]4 .
I’ll end it here. Hopefully, you made it to the end and took away a nugget or two. Please feel free to ask me anything you want about any of it, cousin. I’m always here to help.
'''
Hurling Rocks at Caimans: A Cowboy's Tale
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Forex Training Testimonial - The Lazy Trader

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