Can You Learn About Trading From Someone Who Is Pretending To Trade?

This post originally appeared on TraderPlanet.com.

This week I want to tell you about an amazing trading blog that those of you who are trying to take their skills up to the next level should definitely check out.

It’s written by an experienced trader who does a nightly recap of each of his trades, meticulously deconstructing them in order to give you a contemporaneous view of what he was thinking at the time.
He details not only his stock selection process, but his setups, his entries, his trade management, and his reasons for exiting the trades when he did.

But one of the best things about his blog is that he is willing to share his knowledge with anybody who asks, and is always open to answering questions about his trades and analysis, both in the comments section and via email.

I know that many of you right now are waiting for me to give you this blog’s URL so you can check it out, but first let me tell you something that I recently discovered about the author.
He’s not really trading. He’s just pretending that he is.

Do you still want to know the URL for the blog? No? Well you should.

I’m going to let you in on a secret. A lot of people who claim they are trading in the blogosphere and on social media really aren’t.

To which I say, “so what?”

Long before trading blogs became ubiquitous across the web I used to religiously follow the blog of a guy named “Trader X.” His specialty was in trading gap stocks, and he was the best at it.
Every night I used to go through his posts and match them up with my own charts. I would study the setups, his risk/reward criteria, and his trade management rules. Often I would ask him to clarify or expand on a trade he had illustrated, and he was always gracious enough to do so.

After a number of months someone emailed me and told me that they were positive that Trader X wasn’t really trading, and that he was just cherry picking trades after the market closed and analyzing them as if he had traded them.

I was aghast. I was incensed. I was angry and upset. Oh, and I was able to trade gaps pretty damn good.

Wait, what was that? Oh, yeah, I had become pretty good at trading gaps, apparently by studying the analysis of a guy that wasn’t really trading.

That’s when I first realized that it didn’t matter if the author of trading advice really traded or not, anymore than it mattered if they were short, tall, male, female, ugly, or beautiful. All that mattered was if the content that they put out was of value.

This is a good point to remember as you wade through the noise that we are all bombarded with each day when it comes to the markets and trading. Don’t waste your time getting involved in guessing games, trying to divine who is REALLY trading and who isn’t. It’s pointless and serves no purpose.

Find and follow those out there who produce good content on a consistent basis, that you can relate to, and that helps improve your trading, and let others spend their precious time going on “witch hunts.”

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  • Mark

    I’ve read Trader-Xs blog for a while and still go back and review his charts from ’05-’07. My feeling has always been that he is profitable and does (or is capable of) making a living trading. He does post ideal setups and I wouldn’t be surprised if he didn’t trade them all. but I have a hard time believing that he doesn’t trade at all. That said I do think given the designs of some of the websites that he promotes TAD and Tradethemove that there is a closer tie than he lets on, but I am not certain of that either. I would be interested to hear the concrete proof that Trader X doesn’t really trade those setups.

    • Actually, I believe Trader X DOES trade those setups. I have a lot of respect for him. It was just some random people on the net who thought he didn’t. Yeah the TAD thing was a bit weird, but people would probably think some of the things I am into, like animal sacrifices to Satan, are weird too.

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  • gv

    Maybe his postings are useful precisely because he’s not in the market and he can judge far more emotionless.
    On the other hand I do have a problem with his claim he’s in the market because he’s lying.

    • I love that concept. Of course if someone isn’t actually saying they are in the market, and they are not playing and angle (i.e. trying to sell you something) then it doesn’t rise to the level of “lying” for me, but I understand the sentiment.

  • char

    Hey Brian ! The masteroftheuniverse blog is locked … do you know why ? THX

    • Jeff is revamping the site and it will be back up after the 1st of the year….

  • Trader12

    Ok, so it does NOT matter that @TraderFlorida doesn’t actually trade. Clears up a lot for many. But seriously, some people spend more trying to figure out who’s really trading versus not, rather than trying to learn how to trade for themselves…

    • Not concerned if he trades or not, just the quality of his info. Back when the market was chopping people up he was advocating a swing type style.

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Great father. Good friend. Decent writer. Lacking husband. Solid drummer. Sometimes funny. Often A-hole. Terrible poker player. Too smart. Punk rock. Work in an ice cream shop.

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