Down $18,000: Time for a New Trading Direction

You didn’t misread the title.  As 8/18/2018 I am down $18,663.62 since the beginning of the year.  As I do the math I realize it is only my side hustles and weekly contributions from my day job that are keeping this pipe dream alive.  I will not be discouraged.  I will not turn back.  Giving up is not an option.  I am a Marine.  I will improvise, adapt and overcome.  I’m not stupid, either; the current path isn’t working.  It is time for a new trading direction.  Let’s start with a brief recap of what got me here and then look at the new path I have chosen.

The New Trading Direction

When I set out on this journey toward self-employment, I wasn’t sure where it was going to lead me.  The deeper I dove into the markets, the more I enjoyed the game.  As a kid, I remember getting the newspaper and after I read the comics I looked at the closing numbers of the stocks on the business page.  I compared changes in percentages and looked for companies I knew.  I was always fascinated with the market but never acted until recently.  In May of 2017 with $1,000 from savings and the desire to become my own boss, I invested in 1 share of Amazon (AMZN).

By the end of the year I had picked a few relatively successful penny stocks, Amazon was up $230 and I was up more than $5,000 in realized gains from a few lucky penny stock picks.  I had made some additional cash hustling, but one $5,000 trade was by far my most profitable hustle.   Thinking I had everything figured out, I went harder and faster and traded all the time.  All my trades are logged in this blog, feel free to read about them.  Start here with my oldest post and work your way to the present.

As this year progressed I knew I had been losing money.  Last week as I logged my current balances in a spreadsheet and calculated my gains for the year, I realized I was in the hole $18,663.62.  I was also short $23,930 from quitting my day job.  If I had broken even on the year, I would be only $5,000 away from my goal of full-time self-employment.  This is when I realized I needed to do something different.  I needed to change direction because the direction I was heading wasn’t working.

Tim Sykes: Self-Made Millionaire Trader

I signed up for and bought a stock trading training package from Tim Sykes.  Sykes is a self-made multi-millionaire who has never held a real job. After turning $12,000 of bar mitzvah money into $170,000, he now has a career in stock trading and education.  He was all over Twitter and real people seemed to be thanking him for his educational materials.  Seemingly real people claimed to be making money using his techniques.

While I was skeptical of Sykes, I knew I need to change direction.  Using my 0% Chase credit card, I purchased his “Master’s Course” for $1,895.  I figured I had lost over $18,000 trying it on my own, I think it is worth buying an education that might could help me turn it around.  This will be paid off before any interest is due and the minimum payment will be withdrawn from my trading account each month.  As a rule for myself this must be paid for from my trading account and now count as negative toward my goal. I was officially on the clock, I wanted to put a bit more pressure on and get a better education for my trading career.

It’s worth noting that although I still have side hustles in the works, I am pursuing them less aggressively.  Income streams have been generated but only a few hundred dollars per month.  $1,000+ payouts are unlikely given my concentration on this blog and my goals of trading my way to a new career.  So I have increased the pressure to profit, increased my educational workload and reduced funding for this endeavor.  I need to make this money by trading so that I can begin paying myself immediately.  I can’t afford to wait until I am self-employed to become a profitable trader.

Final Notes

Please look at my current open positions here.  I have way too many losing stocks.  I also have too many emotional connections to them. In the next blog post I will share all my recent trades, some winners and some big losers.  I will also dissect and examine my worst trades and figure out a way to turn them into profits.  The only way I know to make profits is to learn how to trade.  The best way to learn is through mistakes.  I’ve made enough on my own, time to learn from someone else.

As a side note, my IRA has been growing steadily and my personal finances are in good shape as we have no credit card debt, and student loans will be paid off by the end of 2019.  We should own our cars outright by the end of 2020.  The trading account and cryptocurrency investments are separate from my personal finances.  I will only start to draw from them after quitting my current full-time job.

I am holding my 2 biggest losses, UITA and HMNY, for the forseeable future.  They have lost more than 75% of their value and there is little upside to sell now.  Everything else is in play!


Thanks for reading and Happy Trading!!  Follow this blog to see if Tim Sykes can teach me to be profitable trader.  All trades live tweeted!

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