Getting Started

Discussion in 'Trading' started by jkortman, Aug 2, 2006.

  1. jkortman


    When you decide to become a prop trader, you are deciding to embark on a career that would be similar to becoming a realtor, stock broker, or some other person that is chasing a hot independent profession, where your success is solely based on your performance. I'm new to this site, but I am a trader in my 3rd year. I am a prop trader, just trying to make a good living, something better than corporate because I did that, hated it, and wanted to make money based on my own performance. I see my peers on this site and see that they are able to influence you based on the stories of our success. Just to give a quick bio about myself, I will start by saying that my career started at Datek Online. I was just out of college, the easiest job interview that I ever went on, and the best working experience of my life from a social aspect. I never had a job when everyone was the same age, good mix of females, and more fun socially than college. It was a good learning experience. I made shit money, was broke but learned how the market worked. I learned the structure of the market and how people were making good money. I left Datek and went to Island, a subsidiary of Datek to hopefully be a part of something that was young, innovative, and an experience that would be invaluable to what I ultimately wanted to do, which is trade. This was between 1/99 and 7/00, the biggest boom in equities trading ever. Everyone was making money, and I was just someone sitting on the fence. I probably supported the biggest bull market of all time. The opportunities to make money was everywhere. All you had to do to make money was stay in your position. I never saw such movement and instant wealth. I dabbled, but never committed myself to this profession. Daytraders, as they were known back then, were making good money and even individual investors. Even my mail man was informing me how well the market was performing. In the year 2000 I was laid off from Island, just months away my wedding and at the peak of the bull market.
    My goal was to always trade stock, but jobs like that were hard to come by. From my experience at Island, I learned that there were firms out there that would teach you to trade and employ you. However, the risks were high for someone like me. I was getting married and needed the steady income. I was able to land at Spear, Leeds, & Kellogg. They were trying to get REDIBook to be an ECN that was as liquid as Island and needed experienced people to make that a reality. After a month from when I started, SLK was bought out by Goldman Sachs. After 9/11 they merged with Archipelago to become the biggest ECN. In 2003 I was let go because I was burnt out and felt I never received the fair compensation for what I help become a true presence in what the market is today. This was the biggest blow I suffered professionally. I couldn't found a job and didn't know what I would do. A close friend of mine that I knew from my college years and even worked with at Datek and Island made the jump to prop trading after he was let go after the datek and ameritrade merger. He was able to convince me that to get into prop trading. We saw how people were able to make tons of money and always shared the same dream of becoming a trader. At this point in my life, I was getting divorced and had the money to dedicate and risk to try and make this happen. I can't teach you a single method but can tell you how I learned and give pointers. I see my peers on here posting and there stories are true. We all worked together and struggled together, but learned how to survive. I'm new to this site, but a veteran in the game. I can help you. I can teach you, and I am proof that trading is a profession that if taken seriously can be a lucrative and rewarding career.
  2. Wonderful post

    Thanks for sharing

  3. Yeah!
    If you can't trade, stop losing. Try switching into teaching.
  4. Nononsense,

    Your auto trading still smooth?

    Which computer game are you on ?
  5. jkort,

    Looking forward to hearing more!

    Thanks for offering to help!
  6. Kortman, I was wondering when you were finally going to sign up here. Welcome aboard.


  7. may i ask why you got divorced?

    (welcome to ET)
  8. Cheese


    To cut his losses.
  9. Thanks for sharing the story with us. Looking forward to more from the trenches.
  10. gella


    Nice point, cheers ;)
    #10     Aug 4, 2006