Why do I trade?

At dinner a couple of weeks back, JB asked me ‘why did I trade, is it about money’?

My answer agreed: that it’s about money. However, the question subsequently got me thinking.

Al Brooks, whom I regard as my mentor, says that the aim (of short-term trading) is to make money – so I suppose I copied Al’s answer.

To consider the question further, the aim for me is not about the joy of trading. That is too much like hard work. It’s also not the gratification of correctly calling a good trade. Because without money in the trade it’s like.. well, like going to bed with my socks on, it does nothing for me.

Many beginners start with a dummy account. They make trades without committing cash, and the dummy account records potential gains and losses. Many do exceptionally well at this because they are trading without emotion. The real account, the beginner finds, is a different thing altogether.

So, it’s not the pure thrill of trading that does it for me either, and, therefore, we’re back to the money as the reason.

I spoke with my son, Nick, about the question when I visited him in Bristol. Nick’s good at this sort of stuff. He mentioned a podcast he’d heard between Tony Robbins and Tim Ferriss. (Robbins is a popular motivational speaker in the States, and Ferriss is an author, notably of the 4-Hour Workweek).

Robbins mentioned ‘achievement’ and ‘fulfilment’ – which, Nick says, might help me to analyse my ‘why’ question.

With that prompt I understood that for me my ‘achievement’ in trading is the making money bit; however, my ‘fulfilment’ is that I’ve got to the point in my trading that I can, with, I guess, some degree of consistency, actually regularly make money trading.

…..For those interested, here are my trade statistics for the past week: 54 trades made in total, of which 25 were losing trades amounting to £5,982 and 29 were winning trades amounting to £11,295 making a total profit for the week of £5,313.

That was over four days. We didn’t trade Friday due to the potential volatility of the US non-farm payroll announcement; which turned out to be a missed top chart day. We won’t trade this coming Monday or Tuesday either, to any great extent, due to the potential volatility the US election provides.

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