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9 Secrets To My Success

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Written by Timothy Sykes
Updated 1/10/2023 8 min read

My Secrets to Success**

This morning I gave a live trading challenge webinar and promptly dip bought Turtle Beach Corp (HEAR) at $10.70, looking for it to follow this pattern that I tweeted about earlier since it’s a Friday morning:

Sure enough the Friday morning spike pattern combined with this strategy that is so hot right now combined to create a MASSIVE spike of roughly 50% from my buy alert! Check out the awesome 2-day chart on this earnings winner:

Now I didn’t expect that big of a spike and I sold wayyyyyyyy too early just under $11, but this is a GREAT example of the kind of upside potential that exists on my strategy…and the $5 million that I’ve made over the past few years is just barely scratching the surface (hence why my top trading challenge student has made $6+ million in 1/3 of the time that it took me!)**

So, do you want to know my secrets to success? I’m happy to share them with you.

Nearly 20 years ago, my parents gave me control of my $12,415 Bar Mitzvah gift money, and I used it to make my first million buying hot penny stocks breaking out to new highs. ** Then, I made my second million shorting those same kinds of pumped up penny stocks as they crashed, while mostly everyone else lost money by not adapting to the changing market.**

The fact is, though, while I have made a lot of money, I’m not necessarily smarter or different from anyone else trying to make it as a day trader. I’ve had struggles, and I’m definitely not right all of the time.** I think that my story should inspire others to believe that they can do it, too. Here, I’ll share some of my so-called secrets to success. Hopefully, these will inspire you to see how much you can do as a trader.

1. I don’t play into the BS. Some like to say “those who can’t do, teach”. That’s not the case with me: I am an active trader, and I like to be transparent. There are plenty of so-called teachers out there who really just want to take advantage of would-be traders. That’s not my approach. I want to cut through the lies and offer real information. This is part of my goal with the Tim Sykes Millionaire Challenge. I don’t believe that knowledge should be hoarded.

2. I see penny stocks for what they are. Penny stocks are stocks which are offered for under $5 per share. Typically, the companies offering these stocks are small; maybe they offer 1-2 products. They don’t make much money, and as such, most investors are not interested. They’re considered long shots. While every now and then you can get lucky, usually most of these companies fail. However, this fact can actually be used to your advantage. Once you learn how penny stocks work, it is possible to profit as they go up and as they go down.

Moreover, I see penny stocks as what they are. I don’t expect miracles, but I look for patterns which can deliver profits…just like the first green day, dip buy and earnings winner pattern that combined on my HEAR trade to make it so solid…despite my taking a small fraction of the overall move (I usually play things too safely and exit too quickly)

3. Small wins add up. It might not be flashy, but one of my secrets to success is a slow but steady approach. You won’t see me holding stocks that go up 500% or 1,000%. I’m fine taking 10%, 20%, 30%, or even 50% gains on my investments. My average profit per stock trade is on the lower side. However, by repeating my successes over and over, the gains add up over time. So while the $2000 I make on a trade might not be much, when I do it a thousand times over and over, it adds up to millions!

4. You can’t win all the time. Nobody wins all the time in the stock market. Actually, I’m wrong roughly 30% of the time. However, I have good trading plans and solid research, so I typically know when to get out, and I keep my losses small.

You never want to lose, but it’s important to acknowledge that it goes with trading. It’s part of the package. So instead of focusing on always winning, focus on always learning from your mistakes and minimizing your losses.

Tim Sykes studying and trading
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5. I don’t trade every day. A great play isn’t necessary every day. If there isn’t movement in the market, don’t try to force something that isn’t there. Instead, focus on studying and improving yourself so that you can be prepared to make a trade when you see a positive pattern appear. I don’t just trade for the sake of trading: I want to profit when I trade, so I am willing to wait for the right time.

6. Study, research, patterns, repeat. Stock market patterns repeat over and over and over.  Basically, this means that by studying the past, you can be prepared for the next time the best patterns appear. When you’re prepared, you can position yourself to profit from these recurring patterns.

However, the ability to benefit from patterns requires a lot of studying, observing the market, and probably some trial and error. Are you up to the challenge? I teach members of the Tim Sykes Million Challenge team some of my methods of detecting patterns in hopes that it will help them refine their own methods. No two stock patterns are exactly alike, but by studying the past and witnessing them in the present, you learn to react and find the best profit angle.

7. I act like a retired trader. That’s right: I approach every trade as if I am a retired trader. A trade really has to be incredible to lure me out of this “retirement”. This is a shift in mindset that allows me to look at every trade in a serious way. It makes me value my trading and make better decisions. If I’m in “retired” mode, I feel less pressure to force trades; I let them come to me.

© Millionaire Media, LLC

8. Do good for the world. In recent years, I have become increasingly committed to donating to charity. The difference my money has made for others inspires me to continue earning so I can continue giving back. This is one of the true secrets to my success: I have found something to be passionate about that keeps me motivated to keep earning.

I began giving to charity in earnest a few years ago, and I wish that someone had told me about the benefits of giving back early in my trading journey. Since I created the Timothy Sykes Foundation, 35 schools have been built or are in development, in over a dozen countries around the world.**  Education is my passion, and every child deserves it! It is a great feeling to see the difference I am able to make for the world in this way. 

9. I learn from my students. I don’t hold back: I share all of the knowledge I’ve amassed with my students. But it’s not just a one way street. My top millionaire trading challenge students are also teachers to me.** They are constantly challenging me in different ways and making me look at trading differently. In that way, it’s a reciprocal relationship: we both benefit from learning from each other and that’s the beauty of this little niche community I’ve built over the last 10 years.

There you have it: the so-called secrets to my success. Truthfully, none of them are incredibly secretive or groundbreaking, but together, they have helped me create the life of my dreams. Now, I want to help you find the life of your dreams!

Leave a comment below if you now better understand why the odds of success are in my favor on EVERY TRADE and that adds up nicely over time!

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Timothy Sykes

Tim Sykes is a penny stock trader and teacher who became a self-made millionaire by the age of 22 by trading $12,415 of bar mitzvah money. After becoming disenchanted with the hedge fund world, he established the Tim Sykes Trading Challenge to teach aspiring traders how to follow his trading strategies. He’s been featured in a variety of media outlets including CNN, Larry King, Steve Harvey, Forbes, Men’s Journal, and more. He’s also an active philanthropist and environmental activist, a co-founder of Karmagawa, and has donated millions of dollars to charity. Read More

* Results are not typical and will vary from person to person. Making money trading stocks takes time, dedication, and hard work. There are inherent risks involved with investing in the stock market, including the loss of your investment. Past performance in the market is not indicative of future results. Any investment is at your own risk. See Terms of Service here

The available research on day trading suggests that most active traders lose money. Fees and overtrading are major contributors to these losses.

A 2000 study called “Trading is Hazardous to Your Wealth: The Common Stock Investment Performance of Individual Investors” evaluated 66,465 U.S. households that held stocks from 1991 to 1996. The households that traded most averaged an 11.4% annual return during a period where the overall market gained 17.9%. These lower returns were attributed to overconfidence.

A 2014 paper (revised 2019) titled “Learning Fast or Slow?” analyzed the complete transaction history of the Taiwan Stock Exchange between 1992 and 2006. It looked at the ongoing performance of day traders in this sample, and found that 97% of day traders can expect to lose money from trading, and more than 90% of all day trading volume can be traced to investors who predictably lose money. Additionally, it tied the behavior of gamblers and drivers who get more speeding tickets to overtrading, and cited studies showing that legalized gambling has an inverse effect on trading volume.

A 2019 research study (revised 2020) called “Day Trading for a Living?” observed 19,646 Brazilian futures contract traders who started day trading from 2013 to 2015, and recorded two years of their trading activity. The study authors found that 97% of traders with more than 300 days actively trading lost money, and only 1.1% earned more than the Brazilian minimum wage ($16 USD per day). They hypothesized that the greater returns shown in previous studies did not differentiate between frequent day traders and those who traded rarely, and that more frequent trading activity decreases the chance of profitability.

These studies show the wide variance of the available data on day trading profitability. One thing that seems clear from the research is that most day traders lose money .

Millionaire Media 66 W Flagler St. Ste. 900 Miami, FL 33130 United States (888) 878-3621 This is for information purposes only as Millionaire Media LLC nor Timothy Sykes is registered as a securities broker-dealer or an investment adviser. No information herein is intended as securities brokerage, investment, tax, accounting or legal advice, as an offer or solicitation of an offer to sell or buy, or as an endorsement, recommendation or sponsorship of any company, security or fund. Millionaire Media LLC and Timothy Sykes cannot and does not assess, verify or guarantee the adequacy, accuracy or completeness of any information, the suitability or profitability of any particular investment, or the potential value of any investment or informational source. The reader bears responsibility for his/her own investment research and decisions, should seek the advice of a qualified securities professional before making any investment, and investigate and fully understand any and all risks before investing. Millionaire Media LLC and Timothy Sykes in no way warrants the solvency, financial condition, or investment advisability of any of the securities mentioned in communications or websites. In addition, Millionaire Media LLC and Timothy Sykes accepts no liability whatsoever for any direct or consequential loss arising from any use of this information. This information is not intended to be used as the sole basis of any investment decision, nor should it be construed as advice designed to meet the investment needs of any particular investor. Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future returns.

Citations for Disclaimer

Barber, Brad M. and Odean, Terrance, Trading is Hazardous to Your Wealth: The Common Stock Investment Performance of Individual Investors. Available at SSRN: “Day Trading for a Living?”

Barber, Brad M. and Lee, Yi-Tsung and Liu, Yu-Jane and Odean, Terrance and Zhang, Ke, Learning Fast or Slow? (May 28, 2019). Forthcoming: Review of Asset Pricing Studies, Available at SSRN: “https://ssrn.com/abstract=2535636”

Chague, Fernando and De-Losso, Rodrigo and Giovannetti, Bruno, Day Trading for a Living? (June 11, 2020). Available at SSRN: “https://ssrn.com/abstract=3423101”