Hello Everyone, I know a lot of people don't have patience for Newbie threads, but those that do, please bare with me because I have some important questions that, after a few months of demo trading, have me confused on what steps to take next: 1) What is a bucketshop? Examples? I've done some research on the different types of brokers, and I understand a little bit, but are sites like Forex.com and Oanda considered bucketshops? Do they hedge by betting against you (make money when you lose)? 2) I'm self-taught in this field and I've been doing research for about a year on the markets in general. I'm a realist and aren't interested in getting rich quick, but rather building wealth over time and getting better at this. I have developed some strategies that I think work...at least according to the demo trade account results... How accurate are these demos, specifically Oanda and Forex.com, to their real platforms and can I expect the same results from Demo to LivE? 3) I don't have a ton of capital to throw down initially...probably about 1K...I plan to trade in very small lots until I get some additional cash to dump in. If I fund my account with 1K, are 10K lots too much? My hope is to build on that 1K slowly so that maybe in a year, I can start trading in 100K lots, and then go from there....decent strategy? And Finally... 4) Judging from these forums, there are a lot of shady brokerages out there...is it just safer to use one that is based in the US and that accepts credit cards (for recourse purposes)? I've demo-ed Oanda and Forex.com...I like Oanda's platform much better...not to mention the spreads are 100 times better than Forex.com, but they aren't based in the states and they don't accept credit cards. Are there any other brokers I should look into? If ANYONE can answer ANY of these questions I would really appreciate it. Thanks.