A true story I want to share.
About 6 months ago I re-connected with a childhood friend whom I had not spoken to for 25 years.
I’ve known my friend Guy since Kindergarten. We went through grade school, Jr. High, and H.S. together. Academically, he was as gifted as they come. What took me hours of study to accomplish or complete, Guy seemingly could accomplish in a third the time and get better results. He was in the National Honor Society in High School and was accepted at MIT in the fall of 1979.
After his first year at MIT, Guy secured a summer internship at a brokerage firm in Chicago at the CME. He started as a gopher in June, but by August he was trading on the floor of the exchange. Old school trading; hand signals and all. Guy’s effort, results, and promise led the firm to “make him an offer he couldn’t refuse”. His trading career was underway…..he never set foot at MIT or any other institution again.
He traded in Chicago for a few years, then the company moved him to CA where he traded on the Pacific Exchange. After about 5 years, he quit to start a winery in Oregon. It did not work out. Severely tapped out financially from the Winery Operation, he moved back to the Chicago “to make some money”. There he spent many years as a market maker / trader in a number of stocks. All told, he spent 25 years in the pits.
After some “googling” I caught up with Guy. I told him what I was doing and solicited his help as a trading mentor. ……I assumed he was still in the business.
Turns out he retired as a floor trader about 2 years ago and is now back in the Pacific Northwest. When asked why he quit, he said. “I really didn’t like what I was doing”.
He got his Real Estate license and now has a small real estate office.
I asked him why he didn’t just trade his own account from home. He said “I tried, but I wasn’t successful.” I was absolutely dumbfounded. Here is one of the smartest people I know with a 25 year track record of success as a trader failing as a stay-at-home trader. We talked about that and drilled down. Here are my conclusions.
Circumstance, Environment, Tools, and Attitude Play a huge Role.
So although trading from home seemed like a no-brainer, it turned out to be a problem in real life. From Floor Trader / Market Maker to ThinkorSwim platform in the basement, doing a job you don’t particularly like was a step down the food chain. Its doesn’t really sound appealing…..or a recipe for success.
Guy's story doesn't need to be our story. Guy made his mark on the floor and in the pits. We can make our mark in our own way.
Happy Hunting and Good Trading.