Trader profile: day trading with discipline
Name: Sushant Buttan
Position: chief executive, Professional Traders
Experience: 21 years (both building tech trading systems and as a trader)
What is the asset class and geography you are focused on?
We’re basically across all asset classes but my focus is on the forex market – I trade the major forex pairs. Typically, we are actively trading two or three pairs, the most liquid pairs, such as the euro/dollar pair and the British pound/dollar, dollar/yen and pound/yen. We are short-term traders so we are almost always out of positions at the end of the day. We have initiated multiple programmes to help our traders master techniques and become consistently profitable. The most important is “The Million Dollar Mark”, to show the power of compounding consistent profits. As part of this, I have publicly started trading a real live account with starting capital of US$50,000 and will build up the portfolio to an amount of $1 million by the October 20, 2015. It will be a real, audited account and anyone can follow the progress on the link http://www.dubaiptg.com/ltp.
What is the outlook for the month ahead?
We are constantly monitoring which forex pairs have the most volatility. We like prices dancing around; that gives us opportunities to trade. We are driven by technical factors as much as fundamentals. So if there are UK numbers coming out or [the European Central Bank president Mario] Draghi is due to say something, our job is figure out what the market is expecting and then trade on market moves that follow, depending on whether the news was as expected or surprised the market. This involves a lot of news-based algorithm programmes. The key is to think like a trader, not a gambler, and about earnings not winnings. It doesn’t matter so much what actually happens – for example, with the European bank stress tests last month, which were worse than expected – but about the psychology of the market.
What is the best investment at the moment?
We continue to focus on the euro/dollar. Volatility is making it interesting.
What was the best investment you were ever involved in?
In this type of business, this type of trading, if you think you are going to make a killing in the market it is the first step in your downfall. You have to think in terms of good long- term consistent earnings, not champagne days.
What was the worst?
I can definitely talk about the worst trade I did. I used to mainly trade in equity where you pay 100 to buy 100 of shares, that is until I found leverage. But leverage is a double-edged sword and the worst trade I made was because of over-leveraging. It was a hard lesson learnt over the years. Now, we will not use more than 1/20th of leverage available to us. One of the key challenges traders face is coming in and saying: “I’ve got to make $1,000 today.” The market doesn’t care what you need to make. You are much better to focus on percentages, consistent earnings. If you make a 1 per cent return and if you have starting capital of $10,000 and you do that consistently over a year you will make up to a 600 per cent return. We want people to understand this concept, to improve the image of the day-trading business. The ones who come in with dollar signs in their eyes are the gamblers. They have no focus on discipline, money management, risk management. If you have a systematic approach, then professional traders will never give up their earnings.
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Updated: November 9, 2014 04:00 AM