Alternatives to Prop Firms?

Discussion in 'Prop Firms' started by TsTrades, Apr 23, 2010.

  1. TsTrades


    Okay, here's my situation. I spent a few months working at one of the "standard" prop firms (i.e., I have to put in my own money) and wasn't really impressed with the experience. After I left, I applied to a few of the top-tier firms (i.e., not only do you not have to put in your own money, but they actually pay you a small base salary) and, unfortunately, like most people didn't attract any interest from them.

    I still love trading, and therefore want to pursue it, but it seems like there are so few legitimate prop firms out there (at least in the NYC area, where I am). So, I'm wondering if any of you have any ideas as to what the next best thing might be? That is, maybe if I can't go to a firm focused on day trading, are there firms that are more focused on swing trading? I guess you could say something like portfolio management, but a lot more active than the usual portfolio management. I guess you could also say something in between day trading and traditional portfolio management. I hope that makes sense. Any ideas? Thanks!
  2. Kubinec


    If you can't trade your own money, what makes you think you can trade others'?

    Save yourself time and money and open your own account. You can swing trade, or trade on any time frame for that matter, on your own account, too.

    Read a good book or two, spend time on simulator for a week or two, and then get into the action using tight stops.

    I recommend non-time based charts.
  3. TsTrades


    Then why does a firm like First NY, for example, train people for 18-24 months? Besides, when you work for a firm, you work in a structured environment that you don't get trading on your own. I'm pretty sure plenty of people start off working for a firm and then go off on their own later on. Much like lawyers do, for example.

    While on the one hand I appreciate any responses, I would appreciate a lot more any responses that actually answer my question. Thank you.
  4. Kubinec


    To be honest, I was in your shoes one year ago, and just like you, after a not so positive experience with the prop, I thought I could get a job at another prop that offers a salary and actual training.

    Getting in those firms wasn't a realistic option for me as I was a 19 year old former stockpeddler without a 4-year degree.

    Quite honestly, I'm glad that it wasn't. No technique or training can replace screen time and figuring things out on your own.

    But I guess that doesn't answer your question.
  5. TsTrades


    Okay, well, then I do appreciate your feedback, even though it's not what I'm looking for. Just for the record, not to sound arrogant or anything, I'm 32, went to a 4-year college that most people consider fairly elite, and have an MBA in finance (with a 4.0 GPA in my finance courses). So, I should have some credibility when looking for such an opportunity, even if not a track record of trading success.
  6. fogut


    Most of the firms, including First NY, usually look for profitable track record, more than your school or grades. Do you think that you were not allowed to hold positions overnight was the main reason you did not do well in your prior prop firm ?
  7. TsTrades


    That's absolutely not true. Or, at least for their new trainees. Yes, they take veteran traders as well, but that's not what I'm talking about here.
  8. I would be interested to find out if there is a middle ground trading firm like what what you are looking for.
    However I do agree with the track record comment. Trading records are everything from what I have found out, which I think is good. I trade everyday and am in contact with about 8 other day traders all day and the top trader in the group is a high school drop out. However I see his trades about everyday in real time and I would guess brings in around 200k a year. I would put him up against someone who has a P.H.D. in business anytime and im sure he would knock them down a few degrees. This is my 4th year, and I am no where near the trader that others in my group are, however I have finally become consistent. My opinion is get a retail account and after time if you put the effort then you should be able to have a track record that will open the doors for you regardless of any degree or training could ever offer. I dont mean to sound negative and I wish the best of luck to you.
  9. bigpapi


    So you blow your cash and now you want others to hand you their money. This is not the military, if you're not able to discipline yourself by that age what makes you think anyone else is interested in an old fart who just blew 10k. Put your $ where your mouth is and use that 4.0 "finance classes" average to learn about this business and build a track record, prior education means nothing.
  10. 32 is a bit long in the tooth to start trading for a non-deposit prop firm. They want a young whiz they can shape - or at least it's not like they are married with kids if they fire them when it doesn't work out.

    I'm in the same boat and that's my conclusion. Like with anyone else, finance MBA or not, I think it's more about staying in the game long enough to figure something out yourself.

    In your thirties, it's also time to think about long-term finances and not take too many risks with any nest egg you've saved up. That means trade small.
    #10     Apr 25, 2010