Tim started trading around 1998 with $12k of his bar mitzvah money. In his book he details how he was able to run up his little startup capital into well over a million bucks, how he started his hedge fund and how he garnered his current media attention. His path was not entirely smooth and there were a bunch of hurdles along the way. He shares the trading lessons and insights he gained from overcoming the setbacks.
I think one of the major theme's of the book is that the market is ever changing. One of the main factors of Tim's success is the ability to find a successful trading strategy or a number of strategies which gave him an edge over other traders. That holds true for all traders. That edge does not last forever because the market is constantly changing. In order to be able to survive a trader must be on a constant lookout for new strategies. During Tim's trading career he came up with a number of profitable strategies which helped him adapt to the changing market. He profited from the bull market rise and the subsequent crash because he was able to see a change and adapt from going long to going short. What I found interesting was his thought process and how he arrived at his strategies.
"Second, trading is a fast paced activity. Traders will pick up on any consistently successful strategy and jump on the band wagon sooner or later. Then it will change. Thanks to the entrance of newer and bigger players, consistently profitable strategies only work for so long. People continually make the same mistake of expecting someone else’s strategy to work for them. By the time they use it, it’s over and they lose. It’s just human nature to want to follow the pack. People will always shoot for greater profits when they think they have a system that seems to be working for everyone else. Stay nimble, focus on your own plan, and be willing to change. If you find a strategy that works, keep your mouth shut and your guard up."I just finished the book and I feel inspired. I am glad to have found this book because I am at a low point in my trading. I can relate to Tim's experience easily because that is exactly what I am going through now. I did not make a million dollars but I did have some success in my trading. I used to have an edge trading NYSE stocks using tape reading but since the advent of the hybrid that edge is gone. My task now is to find new strategies that can give me an edge in this market. As long as there is volatility there will be opportunities. The book helped open my eyes to the possibilities that are out there.