How much do you need to realistically make it?

Discussion in 'Professional Trading' started by midlifeguy, Sep 1, 2006.

  1. Just curious how much money you think you need to have to make it as a daytrader?

    Say your house is paid off....

    So, you still have health insurance to worry about, food,
    cars, etc etc etc.......

    What figure is realistic?
  2. Depends where you live, how good you are, retail vs prop, what "make it" means to you, what instruments you trade, and what that (those) markets are experiencing lately (bull, bear, chop) and what they will do while you're trying to "make it". There are many factors to consider.
  3. If you were trading the hang seng futures, day only, you could live very well trading 5 contracts or less.

    Margin is 2938 USD for daytrading with Interactive Brokers. So 5 contracts means a minimum account size of $15,000. Add a little for safety gives perhaps a $25,000 account size.

    Now the trick is to get good enough to consistently take money home. That does take some work and will probably take you time.
  4. minimum 50000 $ to diversify
  5. $5,000,000

    If the zeros are so daunting to you.. its 5 mill.

    Thats what I think it would take for someone to make it as a trader.

    Make 1% per year(a realistic goal for a trader), and that's $50,000 per year.
  6. Neodude


    lol, with that kind of money you can make 5% in a savings account and have $250k a year, no need to trade...


  7. Arnie


    Let's say you go prop and they want $25,000.

    Initial Capital: $25,000
    Refund accnt $15,000
    18 mos Expenses $54,000
    Savings to live on $10,000

    Initial capital is self explanatory. Count on a drawdown of at least $15,000, add 18 mos living expenses @$3,000/mo and then add $10,000 you will need to get back on your feet after you lose all your money and decide that trading isn't for you.

    The Grand Total $104,000

    PS I'm not kidding.
  8. Sounds about right. Lets compare this investment to another "real life" senerio. Mine to be specific.
    1990- Open up a full line retail pet store with 60K capital and another 25K SBA loan. $6,400.00 per month business and personal expense. First year net profit of 20K. 18 months in the "little lady" finds a new lover cause I'm working 18-20 hours a day. Year 2 ends with me closing the store due to the divorce and the new competition(the big pet super stores which weren't around when I opened). Sell inventory for about 12K which was a 20K loss. Year 2 is a net loser of about 5K.
    Bottom line- Those two years cost me roughly a quarter million counting living expenses.
    I did get a cat and a fish tank out of the deal though. Still have the cat. She'll be 16 this weekend.
  9. I'd live off 150k a year, and trade the other 100k :)
  10. Neodude


    Don't forget taxes take almost half... :mad:
    #10     Sep 2, 2006