Friday, October 5, 2007

Day Trading Your Way To Success

If you are interested in day trading you first need to know what it is all about and to understand the basics of day trading. For starters, a day trader is a person who is very active in the stock market and makes several trades a day in an attempt to make quick gains by buying and selling stocks in a short time span.

As the market is never the same day to day, no one particular day trading strategy will work each time. To be successful, you first need to understand how the market works and get a feel for the market.

This includes recognizing the stocks' basic trend, the long and short setups, when to enter a trade, and where to place stops. Another very important basic is how to protect your profits and minimize losses.

Once you have learned the basics and are ready to try your first day trade, here are some tips and guidelines you should keep in mind that is essential to your success as a day trader.

Being a day trader requires a lot of time and practice before you get used to the everyday volatility in the market. Do not expect to become an expert day trader overnight. No matter how many books you have read or day traders you have watched, that will not make you an immediate expert.

There are day trading websites that simulate trading. Practice with their trading platform first before trying out the real thing. It could save you a lot of money and you will learn the ropes faster this way.

If you are ready for real live trading, do not be scared by the thought of losing money. There are ways to minimize your loss such as with stop orders.

If you lose money, do not worry, as some loss is to be expected. Just remember, with increased experience and sensitivity to the market, you will start turning a profit soon.

If you profit large sums of money, stop trading. Do not gamble it away by trying to gain even larger profits. You can always trade another day.

Sometimes the market will not perform as you expected. When you encounter this situation, it is best that you do not trade at all.

Once you gain more experience in day trading, you may be able to predict the direction of a stock price. However, try not to pick top stocks or bottom stocks. This is one of the most common mistakes of a beginner.

If you cannot predict where the market is heading, it is best if you stand aside and wait, or you can always go home and trade again another day.

It is a good idea to record all of your day trading results. This way you can learn what works and what does not, and be more effective in trading.

Observe good traders. Look at how and when they sell or buy. Generally, good day traders often buy on bad news and sell on good news.

Beginners often get emotional in their trades. Avoid this at all cost, stay emotionally detached and professional.

Learn to trust your instincts. Relying too much on analysis may mean letting a few good trades slip away from you.

As you gain experience, you will see that different day trading strategies are required on different days and required on different stocks. Be flexible.

Bad day traders often focus on too many stocks that are not manageable and often lose track on where each stock is heading. It is wise to limit your stocks in manageable numbers.

With patience and practice, you can be successful in day trading, and as your experience grows so do your profits. Everyday you can learn new day trading strategies in the market, which you can use to your advantage.

For a more in-depth look at day trading drop by Susan's site at Day Trading Strategy. Susan also enjoys writing on a variety of topics at Health and Fitness Hub.

Contrary Trading - 2 Indicators for Big Profits a Live Example

Here we are going to give you two indicators to use with simple support or resistance to isolate contrary trades that offer great returns and low risk.

We are going to apply them to a live example shaping up right now.

The indicators we are going to use are:

RSI To spot the turn.


Stochastics to time entry.

Both these are explained in other articles; here we are going to show you the set up.

Pull up a chart service such as and go to the Dollar v Yen chart.

If you look at the dollar yen you will see the price falling toward support nearby support is the recent double bottom then the December low.

Now look at the RSI each time it has fallen to oversold levels (the bottom black line) prices have bounced near these levels and risen.

Watch the RSI carefully as we approach oversold levels which we are now.

Now its time to look for support to hold.

To do this use the best timing indicator the stochastic.

At present both lines of the stochastic are pointing down showing weak price momentum.


Watch for the lines to cross to the upside with bullish divergence indicating that price momentum is turning to the upside above support.

This means the bulls should take charge and only a break below Decembers low on a close basis puts the yen bulls in charge.

Right or wrong, this trade will give low risk and high odds of bounce in the dollar.

If the trade were stopped out the risk would be low, but the bounce if this level holds should be strong.

The key is to wait for price momentum to change - with a bullish stochastic momentum turn to the upside and not simply enter and hope support holds.

The RSI helps you spot the trade and the stochastic gives an idea of the change in momentum and when to take the trade.

Using RSI, support or resistance and stochastics is simple but can be very effective at spotting high return low risk trades.

Try the combination for yourself and see how effective it can be.


On all aspects of becoming a profitable trader including features, downloads and some great FREE Trading PDF's visit our website at

Financial Spread Betting - 10 Strategies To Help Create Success

Financial spread betting is easier to understand than many believe. This simple ten point guide offers you the tools to enter the financial spread betting market with more understanding.

1. Practice makes perfect
If you are a novice then the world of financial spread betting is full of dangers. I would suggest opening up a demo account. There are plenty of companies that will allow you to do this. They usually give you up to 10,000 to play trade with. Get comfortable and then go to real money.

2. When opening up a real account
Companies will let you set up for as little as 200. I would suggest setting up your first account with a minimum of 1,000. This will allow you to absorb more losses than with 200 or 500, keep your betting size to small fraction. I suggest that 2% is an ideal maximum risk but with a small account 5% is generally figure used.

3. Start Slow
The UK FTSE 100 is a good place to begin. The blue chip stocks are even better as they are more liquid. The US stock market and Forex (Foreign Exchange) is generally too volatile for a beginner.

4. Increasing your profits
The best time to bet is when you believe the market is going to move sharply either up or down. This is done only by studying the market and noticing trends and practicing also helps. There is software to buy that can help you predict the market.

5. Never Average Down
This means simply never increase you position when the market moves against you. Although if you are up then increasing you position can be advisable; a good example would be when you open at 1 a point on the FTSE at 6000, stop loss at 5900. The market moves to 6100. That means a profit of 100. In this example you buy another 50p and moving your stop to 6000. Should the market move against you, you will break even on the 1 point per trade but be 50 up on the 50p per point trade. (If this doesnt seem to make sense just read again slowly and it will become clearer).

6. Daily Bets
If you decide to bet daily make sure that you have access to the all information constantly. For the beginner it is easy to spot general trends that take place over days rather than hours. Daily betting can lead to small losses accumulating into large sums. The desire to cover you losses becomes greater.

7. When betting
To make sure that you are covered always use firms that give firm quotes on the screen. Use proper regulated firms. There are unscrupulous people out there who will not think twice about taking your money.

8. Telephone betting
If you close a deal by phone then state your requirements firmly and accurately (ask them to repeat back to make sure). Check you contract note carefully and never ever expect advice as it is against the law.

9. Minimising your losses
When placing your bet always use a stop loss (maybe even a guaranteed stop loss) and perhaps a limit order. This will then protect you if the market suddenly turns against you.

10. Profits
In the first six months dont expect to make a profit. You will be refining your technique in the real world environment. Please be strict with yourself and bank even small profits rather than betting them again for bigger gain. It will take a long time before you know technical analysis very well. The first six months will also be about finding out about yourself and if you can deal with losing money. If you cant handle the fear of losing money then step away.

Financial betting can be confusing and scary. If you feel overwhelmed then just sit back watch the markets and wait until you feel safe to stick your toe back in the water. When you start to master the intricacies of financial spread betting then it can be a rewarding and even fun experience.

The financial spread betting review website offers an simple guide to financial spread betting The website is owned by Jamie Forston-Merrel a fianancial analysist from London.

One Of The Most Important Formulas An Investor Can Use

If you're investing in real estate as a source of income, or to turn a profit, one of the most important formulas you'll encounter is the capitalization rate on a revenue producing property. If you're an experienced investor, a lot of this is going to seem old hat, but to show how all the pieces fit together, we're going to have to cover everything carefully.

The first is an acronym, NOI or Net Operating Income. Net Operating Income is a subset of the more commonly used terms "EBIT" and "EBITDA". EBIT is "Earnings Before Interest and Taxes" and EBITDA is "Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization". For the most part, we can treat NOI as a synonym for EBIT, and since NOI is the term most commonly used when evaluating income generating properties, we're going to use it instead of EBIT. As always, this sort of advice is meant to give you a layman's perspective; do talk to your financial advisor about this.

NOI can be characterized as "Are we turning a profit yet?" It's a very simple calculation take the money that's coming in, subtract the routine operating expenses (like rents going out, utilities, maintenance costs that accrue monthly, and salaries) and what's left over is your positive cash flow, or net operating income. This does not take into account interest payments on the debt used to secure the property, or the pinch from taxes. A more formalized accounting term also deducts depreciation and amortization of fixed expenses; while those are important if you're holding on to the property for income generation, from the perspective of someone considering the purchase of a property.

When evaluating commercial properties for purchase, NOI is one of three critical evaluation criteria. In general, you want to buy properties that have a low NOI and improve them if you want to turn the property over quickly for a reasonable profit in a short period of time. If you're looking at doing a "buy and hold" strategy, of owning rental property for the purposes of generating regular income from it, you'll want one with a good NOI, preferably one that can be improved for a little bit of investment and improvement.

The next criterion to consider is purchase price. Purchase price is market driven. It's what the seller (or the mortgage broker) is trying to get for it, based on similar properties in the region, or on physical features of the property. In the current real estate market, the asking value price is particularly volatile. Take the sale price of six similar properties, throw out the high value and the low value, and average what's left, and be sure to check this regularly update this metric at least once a month.

For commercial or revenue generating properties, there's also a third metric to consider, capitalization rate. Capitalization rate is a measure of the ratio of annualized cash flow (NOI) divided by the purchase price of the property. For example, if you're looking at buying an apartment building with 16 apartments, each of which generates $600/month in rent, and has fixed monthly costs in salaries and maintenance budget of $4,000 per month, the net annual income at 12 out of 16 units occupied is (600*12= $7,200-$4,000) or $3,200 per month. Multiply this by 12, or a net annual income of $38,400, for an average occupancy of 75%. If the purchase price of the property were $400,000, the cap rate is $38,400/$400,000, or 9.6%.

Cap rate provides a "reality check" on requested purchase prices; for most of the US, typical income property cap rates range from 3%, for properties with high tenancy values and steady income generation, to upwards of 12-13% for run down properties in bad neighborhoods. If you assess the current value of the leases signed by tenants at a presumed cap rate of 7-9%, you'll get a good bellweather on how sane the asking price of the property is.

For example, the property we mentioned above, that generates $38,400 in annual income at 75% occupancy, divided by 0.08, has a "cap rate" derived baseline price of $480,000. It's example asking price of $400,000 is actually pretty low based on typical market conditions. On the other hand, if the asking price were $700,000, with a cap rate of 5.4%, it's probably not something you're going to earn out on quickly as a buy and hold property, though you may be able to pursue a buy and re-sell strategy with it with some success, if there are obvious improvements that can be made to improve tenancy, or justify rent increases.

While Cap Rate, and deriving an income based cap-rate "asking price" are useful, remember that all three factors Net Operating Income, purchase price, and cap rate are all intertwined variables. Look for things like seasonal renting patterns; for example, properties near college campuses bring new tenants in with the ebb and flow of semesters. If you're looking for a "buy and hold" strategy, properties near college campuses can be quite worthwhile, albeit prone to a bit more maintenance woes than might otherwise be the case. If you're looking for a "buy and sell" strategy, look for properties that can be fixed up, and use the cap rate and NOI calculations to find properties that are undervalued by the market.

Whichever strategy you pursue, remember that patience pays for itself in real estate investment. The aim is to make your money work on your behalf, by buying properties that either generate an income for you to live off of, or by buying properties that can be turned over within a year or so of capital improvements.

Tony Seruga, Yolanda Seruga and Yolanda Bishop of Maverick Real Estate Investments, Inc. work with builders, developers and other players in the commercial real estate industry to acquire and develop properties. They use progressive investment strategies that have proved extremely profitable. In addition to their own deals, they teach both seasoned and inexperienced investors how to be big players in the game. Visit the website for more info.

Is Using A Domestic Forex Broker Better?

In the business of foreign exchange (FOREX) trading, the number of brokers worldwide is rapidly increasing. It is no wonder, since FOREX is becoming more and more popular with the masses. Brokers provide the online platforms for these budding retail traders to use. In the scheme of things, one will inevitably find that FOREX brokers are not all equal in many respects. In deciding which broker to use, a trader will consider many variables, including, but not limited to, the minimum deposit amount for opening an account; margin requirements; the spread (brokers compensation) for the currency pairs traded; ease of use regarding the platform traded on; risk management features provided, such as stops, trailing stops and limits; and, the reputation of the broker in dealing reliably and fairly with its customers.

Another matter for consideration in the comparison analysis would be determining the country in which the broker is domiciled and primarily operates. Because the internet attempts to make global trading a seamless experience, one could easily overlook the fact that the company he or she is seeking to do business with online is located entirely in another country. Furthermore, even if this fact is known, one may ask why it makes a difference. We are, after all, engaged in international trading of sorts, and will probably never meet anyone from the brokers office face to face anyway. The question is a fair one which deserves a fair answer.

Lets start with the fact that, at some point, you may wish to withdraw all or a portion of your funds from your FOREX brokerage account. Domestic transfer of funds, whether by bank wire or otherwise, is usually faster than international transfers. This would be a significant factor, if you needed to access your money in a hurry. In addition, due to such laws as the U.S. Patriot Act, international transfers of monies, especially larger sums, attract greater scrutiny by government and financial agencies and may, in fact, significantly delay receipt of funds withdrawn.

Most online brokers have a terms of use agreement which you must accept in order to become a customer. A careful reading of the agreement is necessary for you to understand applicable provisions, including those which may limit your remedies, define the legal forum in which you may seek such remedies, and describe the type of trading procedures and strategies which you may or may not utilize on the chosen platform. If, for example, a foreign broker limits the forum for seeking your remedies to the courts or arbitrators of that particular country, then your ability to be successful in seeking your remedy is severely hampered by the distance between you and the country where the broker is located. Naturally, it would be more beneficial to you if there was an affiliate office for the broker in the country of your residence. Still, the terms of use will control the choice of jurisdiction and venue, as well as the type of resolution possible. The bottom line here would be to read the terms of use very carefully before parking your funds at any brokerage.

Do not forget the fact that the FOREX is unregulated as a worldwide market. There is no central authority regulating the entire industry. Each country can chose to regulate FOREX trading within its own territory. However, this localized authority will do little to affect the overall market. A trader who chooses, therefore, to trade with a foreign broker must consider the possibility that if there is a dispute with the broker, the trader will have to find a lawyer familiar with the laws of the country in question. Such necessity could be the source of tremendous frustration in matters such as unfamiliar billing practices, elevated expenses due to distance, time zone differences, as well as language and cultural barriers.

In conclusion, although the internet will continue to blur the lines of international commerce, choosing a domestic broker seems preferable to a foreign broker for the reasons stated above. Being able to save a pip or two on a narrower spread available from a foreign broker may not be enough to overcome the frustrations of a deal gone bad, if such should happen. In the event you choose a foreign broker, it is better to deal with one which has a domestic presence through an affiliated office. Accessibility in a time of need lends a tremendous sense of comfort. In any event, read the terms of use very carefully, as this will be the primary document for determining your rights and obligations.

If you are ready to change your future by stepping into the exciting world of trading FOREX, go to for more information. Sandy Robinson, J.D. is part of the Winning Traders Association, an educational organization founded by John Beiler, President. The organization consists of a network of committed trainers and motivated traders willing to provide support to those interested in trading foreign exchange. Many of the members work from home.

Sandy Robinson, J.D.
Copyright 2007

SECTION 409(A) and its Regulatory Cousins - What it Means for Private Companies

The IRS recently threw down the gauntlet and placed pressure on private companies to get their valuations right at no matter what stage of development they are. The Service has backed up this gesture by exposing private companies to substantial tax liabilities and penalties if they do not.

Since the enactment of Section 409(A), non-public companies have struggled with how they should establish that the exercise price of a stock option or a stock appreciation right (SAR) was determined reasonably to be fair market value. Up to this point, most private companies did not worry about valuing their stock very often, if at all. Private company valuations were needed usually for an imminent transaction, for an ESOP, or for estate and gift tax purposes. One could also throw in serious IPO candidates who obtain a valuation to avoid a "cheap stock" issue with the SEC.

Many private companies do not qualify for any of these scenarios; therefore they have not needed valuations in the past. As a result, companies and management that issue stock options could be somewhat unenthusiastic about this development. However, although a valuation in this situation can appear fairly cumbersome and superfluous, it's not all bad - just ask auditors.

Auditors have expressed a desire for this to be done for years. They are cognizant of this development because valuing stock options is a financial reporting issue under FAS 123 and they want to know how a private company established the strike price of its options. There is some liability risk attributed to auditors when they sign off on this standard, and a professional valuation provides them with a level of reasonableness and reassurance that they desire. Considering this, there is a potential for tax and financial reporting synergy here.

With a good valuation report on hand, both issues could be satisfied simultaneously - two birds with one stone if you will. First, let's examine the code and regulations driving this change.

Say Hello to the Culprits: IRC Section 409A requires private companies which award stock options that have exercise prices below fair market value to withhold income taxes on these grants. Significant penalties on non-complying option grants have placed private or closely held companies under increased pressure to be able to support and defend the fair market value determinations.

FASB 123, Accounting for Stock-Based Compensation, provides alternative methods of transition for a voluntary change to the fair value method of accounting for stock-based employee compensation. FASB 15X (Working Draft - issued October 21, 2005), Fair Value Measurements, established a framework for measuring fair value under a wide variety of accounting pronouncements that require fair value measurements.

In developing FASB 15X, the Financial Accounting Standards Board considered the need for increased consistency and comparability in estimates of fair value and enhanced disclosures about the estimates.

In most cases, when company management determines value and option pricing using an informal, internally generated valuation, the tax burden will be on the company to prove to the IRS that the fair market value of the equity is reasonable. In light of the recent regulatory changes announced over the past year, many private companies are proactively adopting one of the "presumptive" stock valuation methods set forth in the proposed regulations.

Procuring a qualified independent appraisal will cause the burden of proof to shift to the IRS and may only be rebutted by the IRS if the application of the method is found to be grossly unreasonable.

Bryce Erickson is Vice President of Dallas-based Erickson Partners, LLC, who have provided independent, accurate, defensible opinions, business valuations & business appraisals for over 30 years. For more information, check out

Forex Trading - Mindset of The Millionaire Forex Pro's

Forex trading can be learned by anyone yet few succeed so what separates winners from losers? While a method is important, so to is the right mindset and here we will look at 3 character traits all the top traders have.

1. Success Comes From Within

Top traders do their homework and devise a trading logic and forex trading strategy they know backwards in terms of how and why it works and why it will be successful.

Contrast this with the amount of losing traders who buy an e-book from a vendor and then blame them, when the few hundred bucks they spent, didnt make them rich! what did they expect?

Other traders blame anyone they can - from the market, to their broker and squeal like babies when they lose They are forgetting that they are responsible for their destiny, no one else.

Winners accept this and rely on themselves and so must you.

2. Confidence

If you have done your homework you will have confidence in your forex trading strategy and confidence is essential, as you have to follow your method through losing periods and know in your own mind, that you can emerge from periods of losses and emerge a winner longer term.

All successful forex pros have this trait and you need it to, as it leads onto a trait that is absolutely vital to forex trading success:

3. Discipline

This trait is needed to execute a method rigidly and not deviate from it.

Keep in mind if you cant follow your method with discipline, you dont have one in the first place.

If you think it is easy, think again its tough even for seasoned pros.

Many traders have great methods but fail due to lack of discipline.

Confronting the Beast

Trading forex is hard as only you can be wrong (its always right) it will make you look stupid (it does this to all traders) and it moves where and when it wants and there is nothing you can do about it!

However you can win you just need to obey its rules.

You are like a ships captain on the ocean. You need to obey its law and understand everything about it to travel on it safely.

For this you need to have knowledge, confidence in your ability and the discipline, to plot the right course If you can do this - just like the ocean has unlimited riches so does the forex market.

If you respect it and confront it with the right mindset you can win if you dont you will drown its as simple as that.


On all aspects of becoming a profitable trader including features, downloads and some critical FREE Trader PDF's and more FREE Forex Education visit our website at

Stock Trading Tips For The Online Stock Trader

Day trading is both art and science. When operating your stock trading business you will eventually get to the point where you can use your gut or instincts. When you are just starting out however you should rely on very specific paramters to enter or exit a trade as well as how to manage risk in each trade.

Identifying Significant Reference Points

When trading stock for a living, you obviously want to know what you are going to do next in a given price action scenario. The key to maximizing profits and minimizing risk lies in being able to anticipate where other traders are probably going to take action.

Using charts in your day trading, your objective is to locate areas where you believe traders will initiate a position or exit a position. Once you have identified those areas, you MUST begin to form if-then scenarios about how other stock traders will react if the expectations they had about the trade are met, or just as important, if they are not met.

What I mean by this is simple, while you are trading, you should always be prepared for any scenario, meaning what needs to happen for me to initiate a trade or exit a trade. Most traders are looking at the same intra day information, once you understand fully what you will do under any circumstance, you will have a much better idea how the majority will react.

If you are in an uptrend and get long, what does price action and volume need to look like in order for you to no longer to want to be in the trade any more? Now here is something I hear very often from traders who are disciplined, I am getting stop loss to death. I am correct on most of my trades and make no money.

How do you solve this dilemma? The first technique is asking yourself two simple but very important questions. Did the circumstances for my trade scenario change or is this move just noise? How do you know the difference? The answer is simple, pay attention to the tape, the volume printing in time and sales. Did significant volume hit the tape that would tell you large traders have an urgency to buy or sell shares? Or did price move without many shares trading hands? If price moved but few shares traded, your original idea is still probably valid! Stick with the trade.

The second method to earning what you should when your call on the trade scenario is correct is utilizing time tested order entry techniques.

Order Entry Techniques

Understanding how to manage share size is crucial to your success as a trader. Money management is how much capital you will allocate to a particular trade; risk management is how you will manage that capital. Risk scenarios will include stop los parameters and share size allocated to the trade based on stop loss points and risk per trade as defined by money management.

Too many traders make the mistake of trading the same share size all the time, regardless of conditions or risk points. I often hear My share lot is 1,000 shares per trade. Wow this is a huge mistake. To be a consistent stock trader you need a predefined plan for how you will acquire the shares for a trade. Simply put, if you want to get to 1,000 shares for a trade scenario, how are you going to get them?

We recommend two strategies. One is building a position in a strong trend the second is entering a small portion of your intended total position and adding to it only when the position has moved in your favor.

In order to build a position you must have confidence in the strength of the trend. If your goal for example is to have 1,000 shares of a stock, you would buy the 1,000 shares in pieces as the stock pulls back or pauses in the trend. You may do it in two or three pieces, for example 400, 300, 300 for a 1,000 share total for the position.

I can hear what you are thinking, why is he telling me to average down? Averaging down means you wanted 1,000 shares, got 1,000 shares, the trade moves against you and you go get another 1,000 shares. That is like marrying the same woman you got divorced from, getting more of what is not working. To build a position like this you will need to identify a window where you would expect the pullback to stop, we teach in our Equity Trader 101 course to use the 20SMA as the area we anticipate the pull back to stop. Stop loss will be based on the full size position.

The second method is price confirmation. Using this method you will enter one third to half of your total position. When and only when the position moves in your favor you will add to it. Using this method it is common to scratch a few trades, take a few small losses and small profits until you finally feel comfortable that you have a good head start on the trade in your intended direction.

Obviously re entry is a big part of this method. Think carefully about what this method is allowing you to you to do, you are wrong on the fewest shares and correct on the most shares. It is terrific money and risk management. It will prevent you from being in a position where you will need to be perfect on your entry, you will gain valuable information based on how easy or difficult it was to get filled.

If you would like some help with any of the topics covered in this newsletter, please feel free to send me an email and we can work on it together.

If you are trading remote and not taking advantage of the leverage and competitive fee structure available from Keystone Trading Group, please send an email to to inquire about rates or extra intra day buying power. Please be sure to put in the headline the subject for the email so that it can be directed to the proper department.

Once again thank you for deciding to receive our educational newsletter on your path to becoming a complete trader.

The founders and instructors of Keystone Trading Group have managed a profitable short term trading desk for the last seven years. Our specialty is stock trades lasting from 10 minutes to five days

Canary Wharf - The New Reality

How many mystics are there in Canary Wharf in London's Docklands? Yes, we all know about the bankers. Canary Wharf is one of the biggest financial/banking areas in the world, but little is known about the other side of this famous place. I'm talking about the hidden side - the shamans, soothsayers, sages, money-fuelled zombies and even gods.

Mysticism has taken off in Canary Wharf in a way that would have shocked people only a few years ago. Merchant banks such as Dodger Coombes are employing money mystics - these peculiar people who can see how the markets will be in a month's time, and quite often a year's time. Their skills are invaluable. Tatum Jones from the Dodger Coombes prediction department says, 'We need mystics now. We can't compete without them. And we are also considering getting a few shamans in. I've heard the students at the Chaos College of Finance in the City are coming along in leaps and bounds. We hope to employ a few of them as soon as they get their diplomas.'

Where will it all end? The City of London also has its fair share of mystics, but until now financial centres overseas - such as Wall Street - have resisted. This could be changing. I recently reported that a statue of Big Herb the money god has been erected on Wall Street. They seem to like it over there. I believe within the next year banks and other financial businesses worldwide will be employing mystical workers as a matter of course. It makes sense. It is the way to go.

Michael Fowke writes at

Etopps Trading Cards - The Next Generation Of Sports Card Collecting

Im sure at one point or another you may have purchased a pack of baseball cards, whether they are for yourself or others. We all had the concerns of what cards we would get and the condition in which they came --and were kept-- in. The number one sports card producer, Topps, has helped to take the guess work out of the card industry. How have they done this? Theyve created a unique card collecting site named Etopps.

What is Etopps? Well, Etopps is an online community that allows you to buy, sell and trade exclusive cards from Topps Inc. Currently, sports offered are Baseball, Basketball & Football. Etopps has also recently signed a deal with the WWE to begin producing wrestling trading cards.

Etopps itself operates as a quasi style stock market, with a pricing system that looks similar to that of a NYSE stock.

New cards are offered each Monday and are given an IPO price (Initial Public Offering) and a Print Run, which is the maximum number of cards that will be produced of the player in question. At the end of the week all buy orders are calculated and the cards are then distributed to a purchasers account.

The online trading and selling capabilities helps to create a liquid market. By liquid, we mean it is very easy to buy and sell an Etopps card. Traditional sports cards are typically traded on

Once inside your account, you will know have four different options. The first is to hold keep your card. The second is to trade your card with others in the Etopps community. The third option is to have a physical card shipped to you. But you will have to pay a shipping few and you will lose the liquidity of the online Etopps market. The fourth and final option is to sell your card to another Etopper. Selling is mostly done on Ebay, and obviously the goal is to sell your card for more than you paid for it. The trick is, like with any market, is to buy low and sell high.

Next time around will take a more in-depth look into some of the strategies involved with trading in the Etopps marketplace.

Matthias Koster, runs - Mr Etopps, a website devoted to anylazing the Etopps market.

Trading and Investing in Stocks and Shares - An Introduction

There is a lot of money to be made from stocks and shares but the only hitch is nobody knows a sure fire way of a method. Let us now see some of the basics of stocks and shares. You can earn money in two ways by investing in stocks and shares. One is trading and the other is investing.

Buying and selling stocks, shares, futures and options over a short period of time is known as trading. If you buy shares, stocks, futures and options and retain them for a longer period of time then it is known as investing.

Besides the above, there is no get rich quick scheme which works. If such schemes work then almost everybody would be a millionaire. Money can be made by selling stocks and shares but it cannot be done quickly by buying and selling without reason. The patient, careful and intelligent investors definitely make big profits in the stock market when compared to the overeager and reckless speculator.

Stocks and shares should be bought when their prices are low and wait for the price to rise to earn a decent profit over a longer period of time.

A prudent investor should not worry about the downs and ups and look for the long-term cycles. If these simple principals are not followed, there is not going to be any profit for an investor.

Presuming it is going to fetch more money, never buy a stock or share when the price is going up, it is wrong. If the peak price is reached at the time of buying then the investor will be holding a stock or share of which its price will be slowly sliding down and you will ultimately end up with a loss

There are certain golden rules to be followed when investing money in stocks. Never invest more than three percent of the total portfolio in one stock. Over time, a successful investor should make all efforts to protect the capital base.

When a wrong decision is made, accept it and cut down the loss immediately by five to fifteen percent rather than wait for more time thinking the situation will improve. Follow the performance of the stock and never deviate from the stop loss point to limit the loss in case the stock does not perform up to the expected standard. Find more info at

Never set price targets. Stick on to one style of trading instead of following various trading methods. The performance of a stock or share is reflected in the volume and price it is traded. Never get influenced by the opinions expressed by individuals.

Take note of all the signals emanating from the market which is connected with the stock or share you are holding. Do not get swayed by variations in data during the trading day. Reliance on such swings will lead to wrong decisions. A trader who is stressed out will be making a lot of wrong decisions, so take time out periodically during the day.

Lucy Bartlett is a proud contributing author. Find more articles here. For more info visit Investing or Trading

How To Make Money On The Stock Exchange

Despite some intensive searching online, I have been unable to locate a fact that I remember reading some months ago.

The fact was this: 80 percent of private investors lose money in their direct investments.

This is the secret that Wall Street does not want you to know. I guess it could be worse. I remember reading some years ago that 97 percent of all gamblers in the UK lose over time.

There are several reasons for why the majority of investors lose money. The main one is almost certainly due to knowledge. Whilst it is not my intention to suggest that insider knowledge is used, it is hard to imagine that some unscrupulous traders are not involved.

What is more important is that many or most private investors simply do not conduct enough research into the firms in which they plan to invest. Company accounts are not looked at or only briefly. Competitors are not assessed thoroughly.

The stock exchange is a very competitive place to make money. All those red braces wearing investment banker types take the game very seriously and so should we private investors if we plan to win.

In fact, the stock exchange is so competitive that at times even some of these investment banks fail to make a profit, despite all the advantages they hold over the rest of us.

Therefore, we private investors need to work very hard to compete. It is possible. The markets are so large that many private investors can earn a comfortable living online.

It is also vital to be disciplined and to follow investments and companies of interest very closely. If you need to sell out at a moments notice, the discipline to do so is required immediately. Failure can cost you your profits and potentially your initial investment as well.

As prices change, so must your goals. Using a stop loss or some variant can help your selling strategy, but when it is time to sell, you must.

Before you start on your own private stock exchange odyssey, you need to invest time and effort to learn the basic (and some more advanced) skills. These will help you for years to come. You then need to commit to continual improvement in your knowledge and skills. This is what will keep you up with 'the game'.

You may also find that you need some form of computer monitoring software. Many of the services allow real time price data. This will help you to accuately track your performance over time and alert you to any important news about your companies. For medium to large investors, such software is worth its weight in gold.

As time passes, you will need to understand the basics of asset allocation. This will help to prevent you from having all of your net worth tied up in company stocks and thus will help to provide more stability to your personal finances. As your net worth grows, it becomes ever more important to be diversified so that your future is tied less and less to the results of the stock exchange.

In conclusion, the stock exchange is a place where fortunes can be made and lost, but only the hard working are likely to prosper. Good luck.

Stuart Langridge is an experienced investor and investment adviser. To read more of his down-to-earth investment advice, click here:

Historical CD Rates

When looking at historical CD rates, it is apparent that some trends have remained constant. Generally, institutions that offer certificate of deposits grant higher rates of interests on their CDs that customers deposit money for the agree-on term than those on the CDs in which customers can withdraw the money on demand. For instance, during 2004 most of the popular banks in the world had offered 0.4% annual rate of interest on saving account deposits which are payable on demand, 0.8% on a 3-month CD and 2% on a 2-year CD.

When studying historical CD rates, the trend indicates that over the last 30 years the rates of interest were ranging in between 2-16% annually. During 1979, the average rate of interest on CDs was 11.44% worldwide. This was the rate before considering tax rate and inflation rate. During the same period, those rates were 66% and 13% respectively, which in turn left the net rate of interest of CD as 9.41%.

In 1981, the CD rate was almost 16% and in which year the tax rate and inflation rate were 66% and 9%. All of these factors have kept the net rate of return on CD as 3.5%. During the year 1986, the gross rate of interest was only 6.6%. However the tax rate and inflation rate were comparatively low which were only 52% and 1.1% respectively. Therefore there would not be more deductions from rate of return on CDs resulting in the net rate as 2.02%.

Whatever the previous rates may be, one can say that billions of dollars have been invested in CDs during the 20th and 21 centuries. When deciding on whether to invest in a CD or to go for other sources of investment, Investors need to take their goals and the rate of return into account.

CD Rates provides detailed information about CD rates, CD rate calculators, CD rate comparisons, and more. CD Rates is affiliated with Online Brokerage Firms.