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Trading Psychology

Struggling to believe?

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Written by Timothy Sykes
Updated 6/4/2023 7 min read

You don’t have to be from a big city, have a fancy degree, or come from money…to be a successful day trader.

I’m not saying those things can’t help…but you don’t need them.

Take, for example, my latest student to hit the 8-figure profit milestone, Jack Kellogg, a small-town kid from Connecticut who was a valet driver before joining my program.

Jack has received much attention lately after being featured on Yahoo Finance

You’d think his story would inspire others…but if you look through some of the comments, it’s flooded with haters and doubters.

I want to talk about a few because they’re absolutely ridiculous…

These beliefs and people around you can stop you dead in your tracks and crush your dreams of making it.

Haters Gonna Hate

jack kellogg and sykes in italy
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Jack never went to college. In fact, college wasn’t even an option for him.

He knew once he saved enough money from his valet job, he would dedicate himself to mastering the art of trading.

Despite his dedication, he lost $1,000 in his first year.

And that’s the thing people don’t always understand.

You can’t rate your progress based on your profits and losses in the first few years.

Instead, you should be focused on LEARNING and putting in the time to STUDY.

Jack didn’t have any haters in 2017 when he lost $1,000…

But he’s starting to acquire them now as an 8-figure trader.

Haters Never Win

students kyle mari and jack
© Millionaire Media, LLC

Some of the comments on Jack’s Yahoo article are just nuts.

Like this one…

This appears directed at me…hitting me with the old if you can’t make money trading, then you teach line.

The truth is my track record is verified and can be found here on Profit.ly. 

My +30 millionaire students, including Jack, are also verified. 

But besides that…

How do people learn anything?

Wouldn’t you want to learn from someone successful and try to model their success?

Don’t most successful people have mentors?

There’s no magic to what I teach. I ask my students to put in the hard work…I tell them there are no guarantees.

They don’t learn tricks or strategies…they learn a process for understanding markets, patterns, trends, risk management, and the mental side of trading. 

The reason why I have so many millionaire students is because they DON’T all trade like me.

But the comments seem to get worse…

Like this one:

This poster believes day trading is not worth it because if you win, you must pay short-term capital gains taxes.

Do you think Jack Kellogg would instead go back to being a valet driver…

Or paying taxes on more than $12.2 million in trading profits?

The “I don’t want to make more money because I don’t want to pay higher taxes” line is a classic hater line.

Also, the idea that investing in stable technical stocks is better than day trading is debatable.

Wasn’t some of this year’s best stocks, like META and NVDA, down 50-70% last year?

Don’t once-great companies like Kodak and Sears decline?

The idea of picking long-term winners in this market is much harder than back in the day when technology was not moving nearly as fast as it is now.

One could argue that “stock picking” long-term is as tricky as day trading.

Yet the haters want to remain in denial…

Like this post:

Jack’s rise wasn’t as quick as you’d think…

In his first three years, he had about $160K in profits, that’s about $53K a year, which is slightly above the average salary…but not by much.

But unlike most careers, the income potential in trading isn’t capped.

There isn’t a corporate ladder you need to climb…a boss you need to impress…or a promotion needed to advance.

Each year, Jack’s skills compound. He builds on his knowledge. And while it didn’t like he was making significant progress those first few years…

All that hard work started to pay off three years later.

Again, there is no magic formula.

The markets are too dynamic for that.

There’s a framework that I teach to Jack and all of my students who join my program. 

With that framework, you can adjust and fit them to your needs.

The principles, however, rarely change.

For example, my number one trading rule is to cut losses quickly.

And that’s just one of the many rules I teach that helped build the foundation for successful trading.

Bottom Line

© Millionaire Media, LLC

What Jack has been able to accomplish is nothing short of remarkable.

But that doesn’t mean he didn’t do it.

It had nothing to do with luck.

He spent hours each and every day working on developing his craft.

Who knows what you are capable of doing?

However, to find out, you must put yourself around people who support you, have the same vision, and have the success you want to achieve.

Let the doubters and haters be with themselves.

If you want to find what it’s like to be on a winning team, then you’ll want to:

===> Check this out

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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

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* 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 (205) 851-0506 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”