QUESTION – Thank you for taking the time to participate in the Q & A session. Before we start in detail. Would you like to share with everyone who may not know, who you are, what you do, where you live and what trade room and where you can be found everyday.
LUKAS – Of course, my name is Lukas aka “TheShortBear” and I am a Daytrader from Germany.
Over the years my strategies and trading changed a lot from a purely technical trader to a more fundamentally based approach.
Over 95% of my trades are on the short side as my primary strategy focuses a lot on dilution and the fundamental state of a company.
Nowadays I am a full time Daytrader and moderator at MadazMoney where I share my approach through text, live audio and video sessions as well as through a complete video library exclusively available for members every single day of the week.
QUESTION – Do you trade full time as you are relatively young (may we ask your age). What pro’s and con’s are you finding trading fulltime at such a young age.
LUKAS – Yes, indeed I am a full time Daytrader nowadays. I started trading when I was 13 years old back in 2013. In contrary to other countries the German time zone is very indulgent as the market opens at 3:30pm which allowed me to be able to sit in front of the markets all these years. It may seem as if starting to trade as such a young age might be a negative thing, but it was the best thing I could have done and one of the best decisions I ever made in my entire life. The biggest benefit has to be the mental side. The older you get the harder it gets to learn new principles.(think of it as learning a new language). I grew up trading, making the typical mistakes, I have gone through the blow ups and sleepless nights, but being able to absorb as much new knowledge and understand the mistakes I made helped tremendously.
Otherwise time is a big benefit. When I started studying the markets I studied for 10 hours per day every single day of the week, I was hooked. From the point I came back from school to bed time I was sitting at the desk learning. The last big benefit is the financial side, though you don’t have much capital to start trading with you are usually taken care of regarding the financial side. if you don’t make money in the markets you will still get food on the table or have a bedroom to sleep in. Having that problem lifted off my shoulders and its importance is something I did not realize at the time. The only negative point I can think of is that you need an adult to open your trading account. Not every parent is supportive regarding trading and as the markets stereotypes continue to be present in the society it might be an issue for some young traders out there. My opinion is this, if you can, start learning right away, no matter your age you would have wished you had started earlier like I would have rather started when I was 8 years old!
QUESTION – What failure or setback in trading have you experienced that has set you up for latter success?
LUKAS – The ironic thing about trading is the more something hurts, the more you learn. Back in 2013- 2014 I blew up multiple accounts. Those were not major accounts and below 4000$, but let me tell you something, for a young kid this kind of money is everything I had. Every blowup had a clear reason! The main points and mistakes I made were: Thinking it would be as easy, oversizing, not having data or a proven strategy, risk management and revenge trading (emotions). Having those experiences is the best thing that could have happened to me because it led to the making of new rules that are the ground pillars of my trading. Early mistakes feel the worst but help you the most even if you don’t realize it at first. Mistakes and even blowups are part of the journey, so don’t give up because the very pain you gave up because of, might make your success as a trader!
QUESTION – Outside of trading, what strange or unusual habit do you have and enjoy? We see you have a strong twitter following. What are your goals if any, for your Twitter account?
LUKAS – As strange as it might sound there are not many things in my life that have nothing to do with trading because there is nothing I enjoy more. I built my life around trading and it helps tremendously! Usually every weekend I work on projects with fellow traders for a minimum of 10 hours per day. I also go to the gym every single day which helps me with my mind-body connection and my discipline right after I create content for the chat members. The only three things I do on a regular basis when I am not trading are cooking, going out to eat every third day and going out to the city on Saturday nights. I wake up every single day with a big smile on my face because I am able to make a good living while doing exactly what I want with the traders and friends I enjoy being around, so i don’t really have or need a lot of habits that don’t involve trading!
At first I created my twitter account to learn . Many traders, even if unintentionally helped me when I was a beginner trader and I didn’t know what I was doing. Sometimes they were hard with me but it is what I needed. In this spirit I continued posting my thoughts on twitter. I believe in giving back and giving before receiving. I wouldn’t be where I am without some traders I met on twitter and I feel like giving back not only saves a lot of traders by learning about the trading reality and not getting suckered in by sales pitches. The plan going forward will be to able to share even more of my knowledge which is why I joined MadazMoney as a moderator! It gives traders a strong and safe platform to learn about trading!
QUESTION– How would you describe your trading style? How has it evolved over time?
LUKAS – I would describe myself as a 95% short bias trader, basing my trading and trading thesis around fundamental analysis and executing the idea with technical analysis. Most traders seem to feel like you need to either be a fundamental or a technical trader. I just take the best out of both worlds and put all odds on my side! My trading is based around one thing, DATA! Every decision I make is based on data. it does not matter if I am looking at the fundamentals or the technicals, I need to know how likely the trade idea I have is going to work. No matter if I enter, add, take profits or stop out I am always looking at the data which tells me what to do. Nothing is left to luck, trading is a business!
The main aspect that changed is my fundamental approach, when I first started you could not find one thing about fundamentals. I learned through hard work and learned about it one small piece at a time like a giant puzzle that since, allows me to see the whole picture.
The second aspect is automation. Most of my trading be it tracking, my trading indicators to my data points are coded into my charting platform which allows me to visualize my trading. Every big project I have completed has been coded by my friend @scriptstotrade which helped me not only save time but also to be more precise.
QUESTION : Your screen name suggests either you like the Chicago Bears football team, or you like to short stocks. Can you explain the evolution of “Short Bear”?
LUKAS – I chose the name “TheShortBear” for a few reasons. The first reason is that I am a short bias trader. As previously stated I am short 95% of the time which meant I had to choose a name that represented what and who I am. The second reason is pretty ironic. I am 2.02m (6.6 foot) which made the name even more appealing and ironic. I enjoy seeing people look up and wonder why I chose this name. it makes for a great conversation.
QUESTION – What advice would you give other young adults looking to get into trading. As statistics show that most will fail and lose money at it.
LUKAS – Successful traders are only the traders that never gave up! Trading is hard, it is probably one of the most difficult things I had to master in my life, still to this day I continuously learn and evolve as a trader. You will make mistakes and you will probably blow up before eventually finding success. See the early mistakes and blowup as tuition. Knowing that should help with trading on the mental side. DO NOT start out with everything you have, only play with what you can lose! Otherwise there is one thing that helps and I mean helps more than anything else. This thing is „DATA“! Data not only minimizes your losses and maximizes your winners, but it also allows you to have mental and emotional control at all times. Track your strategy, track your trading and every aspect if it is quantifiable. It turned my whole trading around.
QUESTION – What good & bad advice do you hear often in trading AND life?
In my opinion there are a few misconceptions in life as well as in trading that are either stated wrong or plain and simple wrong.
LUKAS – The first thing is “Green is green” or “Green is always good”. Let me explain the issue with a simple math equation. If you close your gains for a 100$ win because you are afraid of giving it back but always let your losers run and close your trade for -1000$ every time you would need a 90% win rate with a 1/1 risk ratio just to breakeven! Green is not always good, it may feel better, but we all know how emotional traders end up! I would rather have a planned loss than an unplanned winner!
Another thing is the rush of trading, I hear a lot about the trading rush and the need for adrenaline in trading. let me tell you if you feel anything you have either no plan and data or you sized up too big! Trading needs to be as emotionless as possible, data, plan, execution and out, the odds will do the rest.
There are a lot of trading stereotypes but the biggest one must be the involved risk. we all probably heard something like „are you sure? Trading is gambling, get a real job“. This is something I had to deal with as a beginning trader and I still hear it to this day. While employees are only employed as long as their employer needs them, my employer, the market, will still be here tomorrow, a week, a year. Trading is not gambling, when I am trading I am the house. I trade my edge and take the gamblers money. Successful traders are focused on the numbers and don’t let luck navigate them through life, at least I don’t. It always amazes me when I have a complete plan from these next hours to years and decades ahead but the very people saying I am gambling follow what they have learned through the society they live in without questioning the sense.
QUESTION – What are your favorite books to read and why?
LUKAS – There are a lot of books I read over the years, but let me tell you which ones really resonated with me:
Trading mindset and process: “Reminiscences of a Stock Operator“
Trading technical analysis: “Technical Analysis of the Financial Markets” by John J. Murphy Trading fundamentals: “Security Analysis: Sixth Edition“ (for big caps)
“The Psychology of Trading: Tools and Techniques for Minding the Markets“
“The Daily Trading Coach: 101 Lessons for Becoming Your Own Trading Psychologist“ “Trading in the Zone – by Mark Douglas“
All around psychology/biography: Market Wizards(all of them)
QUESTION – When you have lost your mojo or focus, what do you do to get back on track?
LUKAS – Every time I feel like I am losing my edge, focus, take a bigger loss or I don’t feel good because of any giving reason I always do the same things.
First I size down drastically, at that point it is not about making a lot of money but it is about protecting my account and being ready for when either the market picks up again or I am back mentally or/and physically. After and while sizing down I track my trading even more carefully as well as the market. If my performance, my business takes a hit I need to know if it is because I do not respect my plan and strategies, if it is the market or if it is something completely different. Once I feel like I consistent and fully back I will start to size up again until I am back at my full size.
QUESTION – If you could have a big billboard with your favorite saying or message on it, what would it be?
LUKAS – “Data, data, data!”
“Never give up, you have one life, don’t waste it” “Carpe diem, seize the day”
QUESTION – Thank you for taking the time for our readers to get to know you. Is there anything else you like to say or even promote? How can our readers contact you on social media.
LUKAS – I am always available on twitter and my private messages are open for everyone to contact me. Every single day I am moderating in the MadazMoney.com chatroom where I teach my entire approach. We are working hard to provide everyone with the best tools to succeed in this profession all while having a great time, if you want to learn more: http://bit.ly/2QAncY6
Other than that I am constantly trying to provide free content through my YouTube channel “TheShortBear” and always I am reachable through my email:
Thank you for having me!