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Looking back 18 months.
I was going through old emails today and came across this one I sent out to family on January 4, 2018. It was a reflection on the 2017 crypto bull market and where I saw it heading, as well as some general advice on crypto, investment, and being safe about how you handle yourself in cryptoland. I feel that we are on the cusp of a new bull market right now, so I thought that I would put this out for at least a few people to see *before* the next bull run, not after. While the details have changed, I don't see a thing in this email that I fundamentally wouldn't say again, although I'd also probably insist that people get a Yubikey and use that for all 2FA where it is supported. Happy reading, and sorry for some of the formatting weirdness -- I cleaned it up pretty well from the original email formatting, but I love lists and indents and Reddit has limitations... :-/ Also, don't laught at my token picks from January 2018! It was a long time ago and (luckliy) I took my own advice about moving a bunch into USD shortly after I sent this. I didn't hit the top, and I came back in too early in the summer of 2018, but I got lucky in many respects. ----------------------------------------------------------------------- Jan-4, 2018 Hey all! I woke up this morning to ETH at a solid $1000 and decided to put some thoughts together on what I think crypto has done and what I think it will do. *******, if you could share this to your kids I’d appreciate it -- I don’t have e-mail addresses, and it’s a bit unwieldy for FB Messenger… Hopefully they’ll at least find it thought-provoking. If not, they can use it as further evidence that I’m a nutjob. 😉 Some history before I head into the future. I first mined some BTC in 2011 or 2012 (Can’t remember exactly, but it was around the Christmas holidays when I started because I had time off from work to get it set up and running.) I kept it up through the start of summer in 2012, but stopped because it made my PC run hot and as it was no longer winter, ********** didn’t appreciate the sound of the fans blowing that hot air into the room any more. I’ve always said that the first BTC I mined was at $1, but looking back at it now, that’s not true – It was around $2. Here’s a link to BTC price history. In the summer of 2013 I got a new PC and moved my programs and files over before scrapping the old one. I hadn’t touched my BTC mining folder for a year then, and I didn’t even think about salvaging those wallet files. They are now gone forever, including the 9-10BTC that were in them. While I can intellectually justify the loss, it was sloppy and underlines a key thing about cryptocurrency that I believe will limit its widespread adoption by the general public until it is addressed and solved: In cryptoland, you are your own bank, and if you lose your password or account number, there is no person or organization that can help you reset it so that you can get access back. Your money is gone forever. On April 12, 2014 I bought my first BTC through Coinbase. BTC had spiked to $1000 and been in the news, at least in Japan. This made me remember my old wallet and freak out for a couple of months trying to find it and reclaim the coins. I then FOMO’d (Fear Of Missing Out”) and bought $100 worth of BTC. I was actually very lucky in my timing and bought at around $430. Even so, except for a brief 50% swing up almost immediately afterwards that made me check prices 5 times a day, BTC fell below my purchase price by the end of September and I didn’t get back to even until the end of 2015. In May 2015 I bought my first ETH at around $1. I sent some guy on bitcointalk ~$100 worth of BTC and he sent me 100 ETH – all on trust because the amounts were small and this was a small group of people. BTC was down in the $250 range at that point, so I had lost 30-40% of my initial investment. This was of the $100 invested, so not that much in real terms, but huge in percentages. It also meant that I had to buy another $100 of BTC on Coinbase to send to this guy. A few months after I purchased my ETH, BTC had doubled and ETH had gone down to $0.50, halving the value of my ETH holdings. I was even on the first BTC purchase finally, but was now down 50% on the ETH I had bought. The good news was that this made me start to look at things more seriously. Where I had skimmed white papers and gotten a superficial understanding of the technology before FOMO’ing, I started to act as an investor, not a speculator. Let me define how I see those two different types of activity:
Investors buy because the price is less than the value they see in the investment. Speculators buy because they think that someone will pay more in the future than they are paying now.
Investors trade on information (The white paper was really well-written, had a clear technical advantage over other alternatives, and addresses a need that I can understand and value.) Speculators trade on sentiment. (Buy the rumor! Sell the news!)
Investors usually look at the investment and themselves and can describe why they purchase in those terms (ABC-Coin provides (service) that isn’t addressed yet and matches (requirements) for an investment.) Speculators usually describe why they bought something in terms of how other people think (I think that other people think that the price will rise, so I want to get ahead of that.)
Investors don’t necessarily check the price every day. The can, and very often I do, but it isn’t required because fundamentals don’t often change on a dime. Speculators need to be glued to a price feed, because sentiment very often changes on a dime.
Investors like ideas, people, business plans, and market opportunities. Good ones are like Spock. Speculators like trends. They are tribal.
Investors have a longer time horizon than speculators. In cryptoland, the notion of a “longer” time horizon is still laughably small (months) compared to traditional markets, but it certainly isn’t weeks or days or hours, which is whre speculators often live.
So what has been my experience as an investor? After sitting out the rest of 2015 because I needed to understand the market better, I bought into ETH quite heavily, with my initial big purchases being in March-April of 2016. Those purchases were in the $11-$14 range. ETH, of course, dropped immediately to under $10, then came back and bounced around my purchase range for a while until December of 2016, when I purchased a lot more at around $8. I also purchased my first ICO in August of 2016, HEAT. I bought 25ETH worth. Those tokens are now worth about half of their ICO price, so about 12.5ETH or $12500 instead of the $25000 they would be worth if I had just kept ETH. There are some other things with HEAT that mean I’ve done quite a bit better than those numbers would suggest, but the fact is that the single best thing I could have done is to hold ETH and not spend the effort/time/cost of working with HEAT. That holds true for about every top-25 token on the market when compared to ETH. It certainly holds true for the many, many tokens I tried to trade in Q1-Q2 of 2017. In almost every single case I would have done better and slept better had I just held ETH instead of trying to be smarter than Mr. Market. But, I made money on all of them except one because the crypto market went up more in USD terms than any individual coin went down in ETH or BTC terms. This underlines something that I read somewhere and that I take to heart: A rising market makes everyone seem like a genius. A monkey throwing darts at a list of the top 100 cryptocurrencies last year would have doubled his money. Here’s a chart from September that shows 2017 year-to-date returns for the top 10 cryptocurrencies, and all of them went up a *lot* more between then and December. A monkey throwing darts at this list there would have quintupled his money. When evaluating performance, then, you have to beat the monkey, and preferably you should try to beat a Wall Street monkey. I couldn’t, so I stopped trying around July 2017. My benchmark was the BLX, a DAA (Digital Asset Array – think fund like a Fidelity fund) created by ICONOMI. I wasn’t even close to beating the BLX returns, so I did several things.
I went from holding about 25 different tokens to holding 10 now. More on that in a bit.
I used those funds to buy ETH and BLX. ETH has done crazy-good since then and BLX has beaten BTC handily, although it hasn’t done as well as ETH.
I used some of those funds to set up an arbitrage operation.
The arbitrage operation is why I kept the 11 tokens that I have now. All but a couple are used in an ETH/token pair for arbitrage, and each one of them except for one special case is part of BLX. Why did I do that? I did that because ICONOMI did a better job of picking long-term holds than I did, and in arbitrage the only speculative thing you must do is pick the pairs to trade. My pairs are (No particular order):
I also hold PLU, PLBT, and ART. These two are multi-year holds for me. I have not purchased BTC once since my initial $200, except for a few cases where BTC was the only way to go to/from an altcoin that didn’t trade against ETH yet. Right now I hold about the same 0.3BTC that I held after my first $100 purchase, so I don’t really count it. Looking forward to this year, I am positioning myself as follows:
ETH will still be my core holding. It is the “deepest in the stack” crypto investment that I have. “Deep in the stack” is a programming term that gets at the idea that most software is built on other software. If you just think about your notebook, you have your OS, and programs run on that. But even inside the OS there is a stack. The bottom of your stack is the kernel, and on top of that are the drivers, protocols, and other layers that allow the programs to talk to the OS, the hard drive, the screen, the mouse, your printer, etc. You can change your mouse or printer easily. Changing things deeper in the stack becomes harder and harder. ETH is deep in the crypto stack, so is very hard to dislodge – Around 60 of the top 100 cryptocurrencies by market cap run on top of Ethereum, so getting rid of Ethereum is something that would take a long time to do.
DNT, QTUM, ZRX, and OMG are all, to varying degrees, “deep in the stack” tokens that, once established, will be very hard to dislodge.
That said, I am peeling away some of my holdings into USD right now, because big changes are afoot and they are going to cause market disruptions. I’m going to come right out and admit that this is speculative, but I’m also going to back it up with some non-speculative facts.
The SEC has been sending out hundreds of subpoenas to cryptocurrency organizations over the past 3-4 months. These subpoenas are simply asking for information and nobody has been charged with any crimes or misdoings, but it is clear that the SEC is getting together information so that they can begin to regulate cryptoland. When that happens, other countries will follow, and that means:
Some tokens will be deemed outright scams and people will be prosecuted.
Some tokens will be deemed securities and will be regulated.
Some tokens will not be deemed scams or securities and will continue as they have.
Looking at this, it is clear to me that the tokens that escape prosecution and regulation should do better, but the short-term impact will be brutal and ugly. It would not surprise me at all to see a 50% drop in overall market cap within Q1-Q2, with Q1 being more likely.
Cryptoland has always been a bit nuts, but it is more nuts now than I have ever seen it. Back in 2011-2014 it was a freaks-n-geeks show where people were all about the technology and I would sit around for a 3-day weekend installing a *nix VM on my Windows machine so that I could compile the most recent source and run a CUDA SHA-256 routine rather than thrash my CPU. If that doesn’t make sense to you, you wouldn’t have even thought about being involved.
Now, people see Bitcoin advertisements in their Facebook feed and think “I gotta get on the BTC train!” before going to Coinbase and buying some with a credit card. They don’t know anything about crypto, and they are getting eaten alive – It is no coincidence that BTC peaked after the Thanksgiving holidays when people sat around the table and Janice got Uncle Mike and Cousin Bob all excited as she talked about going to Cancun for Christmas because of her crypto winnings. Huge amounts of fiat got transferred from newbies to BTC whales during this period, and once the whales were done, BTC had dropped from $20,000 to $12,000. It’s now back at $15,000, but for people who bought at a higher level, this sucks. As a result many have moved from BTC to ETH, with the single biggest money flow in crypto in December being the BTC à ETH flow. As a result, it’s no coincidence that ETH is at all-time highs now. The thing is, though, that even most people that moved from BTC to ETH really have no idea what they are doing. They are acting on buzzwords and emotion. They are speculators and are going to get crushed.
The stock market is quite high right now, but people are starting to worry that it is too high and that we are going to enter into a period of inflation again. This has caused gold to go up a lot the last quarter and is likely also responsible a bit for the rise in cryptos. If this view is correct, then cryptos stay stronger than if that pressure wasn’t there. If wrong, then cryptos will swing down as money exits cryptoland for more traditional markets.
I am spending most of my time and money on the arbitrage effort. The nice thing about arbitrage is that it works as the markets go up, and it works as the markets go down. When markets are too volatile, however, arbitrage can get very messy and dangerous, with each trade generating a loss instead of a profit, so I am working right now to tune the algorithms to take into account rate-of-change and add in some circuit breaker triggers. Once this is done I will expand those operations.
I am getting much more serious about systems security.
I have a Nano Ledger and recommend that anyone with >$1000 of crypto have one. The Trezor is also supposed to be good, but I haven’t used it.
I will set up a dedicated *nix notebook that is used for nothing except my crypto work. All it takes is one keylogger to get on your PC/Mac and your crypto is gone. What is on your Nano Ledger will be OK, but they will sweep out your exchange account or Coinbase account faster than you can type. A standard Linux installation with Chrome and nothing else is as about as secure as you can get in the civilian world.
If you don’t use LastPass or a similar password manager yet, you need to do that. Your password to LastPass should be at least 16 characters long and should not have a recognizable English word in it. If you think that “Iluvu4evah” is a secure password, you’re wrong.
Hackers know that “4”=”for” and “u”=”you”. Writing a script to substitute those in is trivial if they want to write the script, but it’s much easier for them to download one of the many, many programs out there that already do this.
If your password contains any string of numbers from anything that can be associated with you at any time in your life, it is insecure. Take those numbers out of the character count because they are an insignificant barrier to cracking your account.
The good news is that you probably won’t be targeted, but if you ever mention online that you are doing anything significant in crypto, that chance increased enormously.
*Never* talk with *anyone* about how much you have in crypto. You’ll notice that I haven’t here. There is no reason to tell even a family member how much you have unless you are sharing a tax form. Sure, you may trust them, but all it takes if for someone to overhead someone else mention at a party that a relative got into crypto a long time ago and made a bunch of money. That person can also then be subjected to the $10 hack and force you to send all your crypto to them.
Your password to LastPass (Or equivalent.) should look something like this -> 6k0jQMoziX&D#4W8
Yes, it’s a headache. Imagine your headache, though, were you to open your account one day and find all of your money gone.
Looking at my notes, I have two other things that I wanted to work into this email that I didn’t get to, so here they are:
Just like with free apps and other software, if you are getting something of value and you didn’t pay anything for it, you need to ask why this is. With apps, the phrase is “If you didn’t pay for the product, you are the product”, and this works for things such as pump groups, tips, and even technical analysis. Here’s how I see it.
Technical analysis (TA) is something that has been argued about for longer than I’ve been alive, but I think that it falls into the same boat. In short, TA argues that there are patterns in trading that can be read and acted upon to signal when one must buy or sell. It has been used forever in the stock and foreign exchange markets, and people use it in crypto as well. Let’s break down these assumptions a bit.
i. First, if crypto were like the stock or forex markets we’d all be happy with 5-7% gains per year rather than easily seeing that in a day. For TA to work the same way in crypto as it does in stocks and foreign exchange, the signals would have to be *much* stronger and faster-reacting than they work in the traditional market, but people use them in exactly the same way. ii. Another area where crypto is very different than the stock and forex markets centers around market efficiency theory. This theory says that markets are efficient and that the price reflects all the available information at any given time. This is why gold in New York is similar in price to gold in London or Shanghai, and why arbitrage margins are easily <0.1% in those markets compared to cryptoland where I can easily get 10x that. Crypto simply has too much speculation and not enough professional traders in it yet to operate as an efficient market. That fundamentally changes the way that the market behaves and should make any TA patterns from traditional markets irrelevant in crypto. iii. There are services, both free and paid that claim to put out signals based on TA for when one should buy and sell. If you think for even a second that they are not front-running (Placing orders ahead of yours to profit.) you and the other people using the service, you’re naïve. iv. Likewise, if you don’t think that there are people that have but together computerized systems to get ahead of people doing manual TA, you’re naïve. The guys that I have programming my arbitrage bots have offered to build me a TA bot and set up a service to sell signals once our position is taken. I said no, but I am sure that they will do it themselves or sell that to someone else. Basically they look at TA as a tip machine where when a certain pattern is seen, people act on that “tip”. They use software to see that “tip” faster and take a position on it so that when slower participants come in they either have to sell lower or buy higher than the TA bot did. Remember, if you are getting a tip for free, you’re the product. In TA I see a system when people are all acting on free preset “tips” and getting played by the more sophisticated market participants. Again, you have to beat that Wall Street monkey.
If you still don’t agree that TA is bogus, think about it this way: If TA was real, Wall Street would have figured it out decades ago and we would have TA funds that would be beating the market. We don’t.
If you still don’t agree that TA is bogus and that its real and well, proven, then you must think that all smart traders use them. Now follow that logic forward and think about what would happen if every smart trader pushing big money followed TA. The signals would only last for a split second and would then be overwhelmed by people acting on them, making them impossible to leverage. This is essentially what the efficient market theory postulates for all information, including TA.
OK, the one last item. Read this weekly newsletter – You can sign up at the bottom. It is free, so they’re selling something, right? 😉 From what I can tell, though, Evan is a straight-up guy who posts links and almost zero editorial comments. Happy 2018.
A Day in the Life of a Stock Trader - Blog | Horizon Institute
Section 1 – What does a stock trader actually do The life of a trader is often glamorised by films such as The Wolf of Wallstreet and Margin Call – a view that is shared by many who have no direct experience with the wider investment industry. It is also true that different types of traders have very different workloads. Trading emerging markets is not the same as trading FTSE stocks or the forex markets. Let’s start by defining what traders, broadly speaking actually are: “Professionals in finance who buy and/or sell assets on the financial markets.” A day in the life of a trader: Behind the scenes These are people who usually have a background in finance, either through traditional education (think degrees in finance, accounting, economics, investment management etc) or through practical experience at companies working within financial services. This is to say that the day-to-day activities of a trader is to either buy assets (such as stocks, futures, commodities) or to sell assets (such as stocks, forex, bonds). Two distinct roles in trading can be summed up in the Buy side, and the Sell side in terms of execution. A broader categorisation would include participants within the financial markets who trade securities. This encompasses independent traders working from home to large multinational financial institutions which see billions of dollars a day flow from and to their order books. The Buy Side The Buy side is concerned with purchasing assets, and this generally involves taking orders from management or clients and then sending those orders to the broker to be executed. This role is being gradually replaced by technology, specifically automation and AI, and its hard to see a future for buy side traders 20 years from now. There is also a distinctly bad reputation associated with buy side traders, these are often just messengers, and have been known to treat brokers with incredible hostility and bitterness over recent years. The Sell Side Alternatively, the Sell side is just the opposite – these traders are only concerned with selling positions either the firm or the firms clients holds. Again technology is eliminating this role over time, and today both buy and sell side traders simply take message, and pass it along either electronically through an online platform or via telephone for the perhaps more traditional establishments. Private Hedge fund managers Many successful traders have gone on to start hedge funds with private companies and from private investors. This is a highly privileged position to be in, as hedge fund managers are in control of both the broad strategy for the investments and receives the greatest compensation should the strategy be profitable. Private Portfolio Managers Portfolio managers working at a private company (such as a large hedge fund) is again a much sought after position. Portfolio managers generally create a positive or negative selection portfolio, which allows them to implement their own strategy to make the best returns with the lease risk – although these parameters are often set outside the control of the individual portfolio manager. The same also exists within commercial banking, but it is usually more focused on creating a very balanced portfolio that exists to hedge risk as opposed to making real returns. Analysts Analysts do the number crunching and quantitative prep work for the portfolio or hedge fund managers. This role involves applied finance and taking a close look at various assets fundamentals. This includes the balance sheet, income statement and cashflow statement for analysts looking at stocks. This is usually a relatively junior role, and those who are successful here tend to become traders, portfolio managers and eventually hedge fund managers over the course of a successful career. Investment Banking There are still plenty of traders left at investment banks, despite the decline over the last few decades. As much as 90% of the time is spent dealing with clients such as Hedge and Pension Funds. Investment Bank Traders As much as 90% of the time is spent dealing with clients such as Hedge and Pension Funds. The trader is then Making Markets in Assets the clients want to buy/sell, such as stocks, currencies, commodities and bonds. The other 10% of time is Proprietary trading, utilising the banks large balance sheet to create a positive selection portfolio. Market Makers (Agency) Market making is the primary task of an investment trader (~80% of market making business) Split into two sections: Agency Business – Client holds risk Risk business – Investment Bank holds risk Investment Bank charges commission on these activities at a typical rate of 5 basis points or 0.05% Example – Buy £10,000,000 of BP stock at £100 per share = 100,000 BP shares. Commission for bank - £10,000,000 X 0.005 = £5,000 Risk free for bank – algorithm executes trades based on client orders In terms of basis points, 100 = 1% Proprietary Trading This type of trading can happen in two ways, the first where small investors at home use their own capital to trade for a direct gain or commercially where a firm uses its own capital to make trades to be the prime beneficially of the rewards should the trade go well. This is in contrast to how hedge funds would normally just earn a commission, by also utilising internal capital the firm is able to take larger risks, which tend to come with the larger rewards. Here’s another interesting fact: “Only 6% of candidates end up making it as a professional trader” (Business Insider, 2011) This statement alone shows just how competitive the industry is, and to make a successful career is even harder, with only ~5% of traders ever making it to a managerial level. A day in the life of a trader: Behind the scenes Section 2 – How does 8 hours day break down? 6:00 AM Traders usually start the day at 6.30 AM and start to catch up on news that broke overnight that may A) affect current positions or B) provide opportunities for new positions. These changes are digested, and areas of special interest are noted for further analysis later. 7:00 AM Arrive at trading floor at 7:30, 30 minutes before markets open. This is the time where traders prepare themselves for the day. It also serves as an opportunity to talk to colleagues. For most hedge funds and other long-term traders, team meetings will happen in the morning to ensure all traders are up to speed and playing from the same game plan. 8:00 AM Markets open: based on overnight news there may be buying / selling activity to adjust the traders portfolio based on the latest information. Many traders prefer not to trade at the market open due to higher volatility as traders from around the world react to overnight news. 9:00 AM A common task around 9:00 AM would be to scan the market for short term opportunities, or to catch up on fundamental company analysis of companies in the watch list. 10:00 AM Continuation of analysis or opportunity seeking based on the traders own intuition, experience and judgement. This is also prime time for internal meetings with the team and meetings with clients, potential clients etc. 11:00 AM Here we see lower volume and volatility, and so short-term opportunities diminish, traders are thinking about lunch at this point. Finishing up financial models and analysis done in the morning. Another prime time for meetings with the team and clients. 12:00 PM Most long-term traders take lunch, some short-term traders will stay at the desk as timing can be critical to a successful day. 1:00 PM As investment banks and other major institutions return from lunch volatility in the markets increases and short-term traders get back to work. Long-term traders generally get back to analysis, risk management or strategy functions with only a cursory interest in the current market prices and volatility. 2:00 PM Day traders will spend this time monitoring positions and executing trades as necessary. Long-term traders use this period in a variety of ways, as mentioned above. 3:00 PM Short-term traders now think about closing existing positions and stop looking for new opportunities. This is also where the administrative functions of cancelling unfilled orders, or for long term traders, finalising analysis of the day and presenting it to stakeholders. This is the last chance to exit positions for the trading day. 4:00 PM The markets are now closed. Traders often look back at the day, seeing what went well (and what didn’t). Management will often check in and with-it bureaucracy and paperwork. 5:00 PM Time to leave the office and go home. The advent of mobile internet means most traders are now reading the latest financial news, following commentary and thinking about the strategy for tomorrow. 6:00 PM If all went well arrive home, if not then its likely the trader will still be at the office working to meet the deadline of the day, from financial models to briefing management and clients. 7:00 PM Outside of the general workday, traders will spend much of the evening doing research and analysis – everything from learning about the markets to experimenting with financial models to taking an advanced excel course. Section 3 – Why you might want to be a stock trader We meet a lot of traders, its what we do – and here are a few of the top reasons traders we spoke to continue to do what they do. Love the Game Many traders are extremely fond of the game that is the financial markets. Day traders talk about the rush as fast-paced action that runs from 8am to 4pm 5 days a week. The same holds true for long-term traders, and while lacking the constant adrenaline of day trading the highs of closing a trade that’s been on-going for months is just as great a feeling – the analogy one trader used was whereas day traders get Christmas every day, long-term traders get all of their Christmases at once, 4-5 times a year. Financial Freedom This is not just about the ability to make a living from trading and the financial markets, but from having the knowledge and understanding of the world of finance to make sound financial decisions, whether that be in deciding between a fixed or variable mortgage, or the best ways to allocate capital to save for school fees. Intellectual Challenge There is undoubtedly both an intellectual and an emotional challenge in trading successfully. While it is said that day traders trade emotion, long term portfolio managers trade on intellect and sound financial decision making. Style & Expression Traders all trade differently, from value investors to crypto speculators each trader develops a style and method of trading that fits their way of life and the perception they have of the world around them. If you are emotional in-tune with the wider world, then day trading can be exceptionally profitable. The same holds true for value investors like Warren Buffet, a trader who enjoys digesting and analysing reams of company reports to find what Buffet calls “Great companies at fair prices”. This post has hopefully given you an understanding of the typical day in the life of a trader. If you feel your ready to take the next step towards a career in trading and finance, Horizon provides a comprehensive introductory course on Investing for Beginners. https://blog.hioim.com/post/a-day-in-the-life-of-a-stock-trade
A long story and lesson about trusting people and managing expectations
So I'm not sure I'd you guys will enjoy this story or if it will just be removed but I currently need to vent because well this happened. And I've lost alot of faith in people. If you don't feel like reading the whole thing I tried to put a TL;DR in each paragraph. Trading- So to kindof preface the story, I am a young guy that is very interested in all things finance such as investing/trading. Because of this I got involved into the Foreign Exchange market(Forex) at the beginning of 2016 and I got very lucky going from $200 to ~$15,000 in 6 months and then unluckily went from ~$15,000 to $0 in less than a minute. So while I was trading this I still worked my normal job(military) and at this job people knew I was trading and doing quite well, they'd frequently ask where I'm at with my trading. So when I lost everything I still thought I will trade again but I'll wait until the new year of 2017. -TL;DR- 2016- Young, like finance, made alot of money, lost all of it and plan to try again. First half of 2017- So during my trading in 2016 I had offered to alot of people at work that I would teach them or show them how to trade. At the time I really just wanted to have someone at work to talk about trading because all I really had was Reddit for Forex talk. So in 2017 I start up again and one of the Civilians I work with decides he wants to join me in trading (most military jobs have civilian slots where they do basically the same thing but get paid 2-3x more, in this case retired mil now civilian). So I help him get setup very excitedly because I finally have someone to talk about trading with he also says he will put in ~$200 to start with as well. So I think oh awesome I can teach you better since our accounts will be the same, so I trade by myself talking to let's call him Civ about trading consistently for about 3-4 weeks. One day suddenly Civ says "hey I put money into my account what are we trading today?" So obviously I'm like "awesome today I'm gonna trade this pair and I think it's a good setup" Civ says OK I put a trade in. So I go about my day and I don't see him until around the end of the day and our trade did go well, I had made about $45 on my at the time $130 account so I'm pretty happy at this point. So I see Civ and he's like super happy and this was our conversation Civ- "wow that was a good trade man" Me-"Yeah pretty good return for a day" Civ- "So how much did you make today?" Me- "I made $45 so like 40ish% pretty sweet" Civ- "man I made a little over $70,000" yes that is $70,000 Me- "....What the fuck? But how?" Civ- "well I kindof put in close to $75,000!" Me- "but even if you scaled up how did you make almost 100%?" Civ- "well I kindof just put in a trade as if I had $200,000 in the account, and then I did another one" So at this point I'm just completely blown away that he just made double what I make in a year in under 8 hours, but after the complete shock and awe wears off I'm legitimately happy for him because I helped in the trade but it definitely made my $45 feel like nothing. So to speed this story up what I just said above actually happens about 3 more times to the point where he makes over $140,000 thanks to the trades that I let him know about. But eventually I start to seriously resent him cause his true character starts to show in a series of events. First he starts to claim the trades were all his idea never even giving me credit, second he never even thanks me for helping him make 4 times as much as I get a year. Third he Basicly tries to rub it in my face a few times throughout this mess saying things like "you should put more money in so you can make more" or "just put half you paycheck in" which is pretty much impossible considering I'm a young E3 at the time and I don't have just money to blow. And fourth he tries to throw me under the bus multiple times for things I didn't do at work. Now here comes in Dirtbags 1 and 2 these two are the worst enlisted personnel I've ever seen but are basically protected by Civ he always stands up for them to higher ups and keeps them from getting in trouble by blaming others for there mistakes and they know this(They will be important later on). There is alot of icing on the cake as far as these 3 but I'm not gonna make this story any longer than it has to be. TL;DR- Help Civ make shitloads of money, Civ shits on me and starts a Sortof witch hunt after me, no longer trade with Civ. Civ in a nutshell- now this Summary of who Civ is isn't really important to the story(skip if ud like) but I felt a need to explain this guy so that people have an understanding of who I'm dealing with. Civ is Basicly a true narcissist he encompasses every meaning of the word. At work he chooses favourites and actively tries to ruin the careers of everyone that isn't his favourite and he's one of those people that laughs about everything he says, he does this so that he can decide based on your reaction if he wants it to be a joke or be serious since every "joke" is in a somewhat demeaning tone. He knows nothing about saving or investing in fact he actually gambles everyday via online poker or fantasy football, during football season hes openly said he gambles over $500 a day since he "wins quite frequently". He's a 45 year old man with a family and kids but he expects invites too all the house parties that people at work have and if he doesn't he has a legitimate hissy fit where I've seen him actually curse people out about how he will no longer invite anyone else to do anything with him(he doesn't do anything tho). He tries to be the guy at work thats "just so cool you gotta be friends with him" but there's a few of us who see straight through his lies and BS. TL;DR- Civ=Narcissistic man child with a gambling problem. Second half of 2017- So I no longer really talk to Civ we talk work related stuff here and there at this point I know he's very two faced and selfish so I avoid him because I can see straight through it. In around July we have a conversation about the up and coming Crypto currencies I tell him I don't really have any idea how to judge if they will keep going up or not. Supposedly Civ buys 0.30-0.40 a Bitcoin(BTC) not sure the price he got it at. Around this time he was pestering me for trades everyday which at this point I'd lost what I put in so I was no longer trading. But when I'd tell him that he took it personally kindof as if I owe him more trades(wtf right?) So I just basically ignore his asshole tones and go about my day. Around this time Civ gets out of Forex he tells me he withdrew over $240,000. Also tells me he never told his wife he made anything and that she thinks he only has like $2,000 in the account(more signs of a gambling addiction). FAST FORWARD to about 2-3 weeks ago- At this point I really don't care about Civ being ungrateful of all the money I've made him and in my life im getting hardcore into crypto currencies. I see BTC hit an insane high of over $18,000 and I see Civ the next day and ask about the BTC he bought he says he's still got it not paying attention to BTC at all tho so I tell him about it and how it could be a time to get out and get into something else so he says OK and that he will look into it. Next day Civ says hey I got out what should I do with it I want to keep it in Crypto, so I tell him about Litecoin and how it's cheaper and promising so he buys 55 Litecoin. (Why am I still helping this guy right? I have no idea) FAST FORWARD to this week- Litecoin explodes to $335 a coin when Civ got in at $90 a coin so he makes about $18,000. I'm pretty happy for him because I called another good investment even tho my little $350 crypto account hardly moved, at this point I don't expect anything from Civ because I expect he's still two faced. This time I actually show him the Litecoin price at work and he's super happy and actually thanks me so I'm like wow that's surprising. But then proceeds to tell co-worker's that he did this on his own (of course). Civ then asks me what he should do now. So at this point I just think well whatever I'm used to this and I'm never getting anything out of this so what's one last investment that I give him gonna hurt right? So I tell Civ about other altcoins on Binance.com and how he needs to get a Binance account to get to them instead of his Currently Coinbase account so he is like okay cool. NOW IT GETS FUCKING INTERESTING- so I tell Civ to get a Binance account and what Coins could be big here soon and he says he will make an account. Remember that Binance has a referral system going on and so I look into it and see that Binance would give me 50% OF WHAT HE DEPOSITS AS A REFERRAL REWARD AND IM FINALLY GONNA GET SOME SORT OF REWARD FOR ALL THE MONEY I'VE HELPED HIM MAKE AND IT WON'T COST HIM ANYTHING. It hits me like a freight train that if he uses my referral code I can get potentially $8,000 into my little coin account. I start to get excited BUT then remember who I'm dealing with so first I sent him my referral code and he says "cool no problem" then I start to think shit what if he forgets to put the code in so I text him again but this time IFU by saying "Hey if you have any questions let me know just don't forget to put in my Referral code cause I get free BTC lol" .....TIFU by showing a narcissist how to fuck someone over....AGAIN. So on the Binance referral page it shows you the first few letters of the person's email that used the referral and how much commission you have made from said person. Civ says he's going to make an account on Binance that night I say OK cool. That night my referral page gets one attached email that doesn't have letters I'm expecting so I'm kindof confused then I remember Civ is a 45 year old Neckbeard gamer so he likely had a wierd email address. No big deal, I see Civ next day at work and ask him how his account setup went (usually takes a few days) he says great and that DIRTBAG #2 also wants to get into crypto so he gave DB2 my referral code. .... Wait a minute the email attached to my account was actually DB2s because the first letters are his Initials of his name no doubt about it. But I don't think this is wierd at the time I carry on through out my week. UNTIL TODAY(Yes an actual TIFU) I see Civ at work (this is three days after he was supposed to setup his account and it still hasn't popped up on my referral list) and he says "I'm actually gonna not put money in to anything without doing research" this to me is wierd because for the last year he's made over $155,000 by literally doing no research and just listening to me. So I say cool whatever good idea. Meanwhile I'm also weirded out by how DB2 has not talked to me about crypto at all since using my referral code and he's been in this extremely happy mood lately so I'm like wtf is going on? Since I had taught DB2 Forex less than a year ago and he had the IQ of a house fly this strikes me as extremely odd compared to when I taught him last he wouldn't stop asking questions. BUT THEN IT HIT ME today when I got home I checked my referrals again because I was still pretty excited for $8,000 and how much it will help me and my wife with Christmas this year and then seeing that he hasn't popped up on the referral list it dawned on me. When I exposed that I would get free BTC to Civ he took it upon himself to have DB2 create an account on Binance and use my referral code so that I would think this was Civ meanwhile Civ put in DB2s referral code giving DB2 $8,000 and then he proceeds to lie to me. Going into investigative mode after calming down from an absolute rage I text DB2 knowing he literally knows Zero about crypto and my hypothesis being very very plausible I go to the weakest link directly and that's the low IQ DB2 and I start to talk to him about crypto first he says he has a Binance account with a bit of coins so I ask him what's next and he tells me he needs to get a coinbase account...... Which is Basicly the only way to put money into crypto so I ask him how he put money in before if he wasn't using coinbase and he says "I think it was Coinable.com" So I continue the conversation about crypto trying to get more of a clue of what Coins he owns he of course lists the exact list I gave Civ earlier that week . At this point I'm about 98% sure my hypothesis is correct and that I work with two of the most narcissistic people I've ever met. BUT THEN I get confirmation in the form of DB2 Being so clueless about crypto because he explains that he has "about 0.23 of BTC" which is roughly $4,000 which I know DB2 Does not have due to the fact that he recently totaled his 4th car this year. So Civ had DB2 create an account on Binance in order to give DB2 $8,000 in free money and to avoid giving me a single dime even tho I'm the one that's helped him make over $155,000 this year and then continues to lie to me thinking that I'm to stupid to figure this out. This is the single most fucked up thing I've ever personally seen happen to someone, and of course that someone is myself. Also to clarify the $8,000 does not come out of Civs pocket it comes out of Binances pocket as a thank you to getting people on their site so literally wouldn't cost Civ a dime. TL;DR(FULL) I help a narcissistic piece of shit make over $155,000 in a year and he avoids giving me anything in return at all at all costs. Now myself personally I made the mistake of putting myself in Civs shoes, you have a 21 year old guy at work that helps you make over a years salary and so I thought oh I'd totally being super appreciative and buy him lunch or maybe dgive him less than 1% of what he just earned you but this is where I really fucked up. In starting to put myself in his shoes I started to just completely resent Civ and everything about him because I started to feel like I deserve something. In the Forex community there are people who will trade your money for you or give you signals and those people can make lots of money either % returns of each trade or $ amounts for each signal. Looking back I shouldof come up with a Sortof contract after that first trade with Civ but at the time I didn't know what kindof person he really was. I'm posting it here because it's kindof a lesson I've now learned on not to trust people to be decent to you in return when it comes to investing/trading I've learned that as you guys have probably seen or know about how certain people get extremely inflated ego when it comes to trading/investing. And if your ever in a situation where you could make someone alot of money just do yourself a favour and draft a small document of how that person should give you about 10% of what they make. That alone should tell you what you need to know about the person is how they react to signing a contract like that. Take it from a practically broke Enlisted member who just made a well off guy way more cushioned.
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