In 2020, hindsight is 20/20. As I look back at my investing experience, I can’t help but focus on three mistakes I made which I could have easily avoided, if only I’d been more informed. I’m hoping this post can help readers and investors, both casual and involved, help avoid the mistakes that held me back from achieving more than I did.
The first is a bit confusing if you’re not too familiar with the options that exist for investing: I used my own money when I shouldn’t have.
I’ll elaborate for those that don’t know about prop trading. Prop trading, boiled down to its essence, is a way of trading with other people’s money, then splitting the profits.
When I was starting out, I unfortunately went all in. I used my savings and even some of my emergency fund to trade with. This is quite possibly the worst way to start out investing. The potential for risk—which I’ll get to shortly—is so high. And if something out of your control happens, like a global pandemic, your life’s savings could vanish.
When something like this happened to me, I didn’t end up ruined, but I certainly set myself back.
If I could go back and do it again, I’d sign up for as a prop trader first. Out of the options I’ve found, I like Try2BFunded the most. The reasons are pretty simple—it’s easy to use, it teaches as you go thanks to its qualifying round, and, most importantly, the cut is better than anywhere else I’ve seen. When you’re taking home a majority of the profits—60% to be exact—in using someone else’s money, you’re in good standing as far as I’m concerned.
Secondly, I would have trusted my gut more.
Yes, this is about as cliche as advice can get. But cliches are cliches for a reason. For years, I heard about the threat of a tech bubble pop. There was no way the FAANG stocks could continue to ascend. Netflix was going to fall as other streaming services began. Over and over, I heard doubters say things that conflicted with my gut feeling.
The times I regret are those when I listened to other people instead of myself.
Look at the stocks I mentioned above. They’ve survived dip and dive and came out on the other side. Was I 100% correct? Of course not.
But it’s important to remember that all of the analysts, talking heads and everyone else have jobs to keep. And their jobs revolve around making headlines and generating news.
Doing thorough research is important if you want to get ahead and take risks with investing, but the combination of a sense of self-confidence and knowledge is the essential way to succeed.
I wish, also, that I knew how to research better. Through Try2BFunded and the Score Priority Store network, I discovered Chaikin Analytics, a news and analytics powerhouse that has let me make informed decisions while saving time. Chaikin Analytics cuts through the aforementioned shenanigans and gives me what I need, when I need it.
If I could go back and do it all over, I wouldn’t change much. But I would make sure to be more careful with my money and aware of where my gut was leading me.