More Interviews, Sam McCallum

Sam McCallum founder of – Interview

Machu Picchu

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.

SAM – I’m Sam McCallum, the founder of which is a company that provides Technical Charting Research to both retail Investors and professional money managers.
We also provide Technical Analysis & Options mentoring programs and I run the Technical side of things, and I’ve recently brought on Sean McLaughlin to fill the gap I have for Options mentoring within my client group, and I could not be happier with the structure and how things have started.
I’m also currently working toward my CMT designation and I’m a massive geek when it comes to anything related to the art of Technical Analysis.


QUESTION – Any additional information on yourself you like to share before moving on to more questions

SAM – I’m also currently working toward my CMT designation and I’m a massive geek when it comes to anything related to the art of Technical Analysis.
I have complete belief in the art of minimalism and de-cluttering the Technical side to make better informed investment decisions and making sure I filter out what’s irrelevant to the chart. I think that’s why the abundance of free content I put out to the world is received so well and very easily understood.
In my past life, I’ve consulted for the likes of Deloitte and Lloyds Bank, and have a very professional risk-based background within the world of Finance which has fortunately allowed me to travel the world and see some pretty cool stuff. I’ve been involved in Finance in one way or another for 15 years and I currently reside just outside Edinburgh, Scotland.


QUESTION – What may I ask got you into trading?

SAM – What got me into Trading? I’ve always had a massive interest in the Markets, but back in 2008 I seen 1st hand the devastation a recession and bear market caused to my colleagues (who had families). It also had a negative effect on my own 401k, and at that time, my career was forced to take a break due to the layoffs within the bank I was working for, so naturally I seen the value of any investments I had drop.I had lost my job and I said to myself I’d never invest in the market, because it was just too risky and the stress was too much.
Fast forward a few years, and I started dabbling here and there and picked up this little thing called “day-trading” and thought, ahhhhh this is easy, I’ll just buy this here and sell it here, what could be easier right? Nope, I messed things up and blown a few accounts over the course of around 3 years. I then started to get involved within Meetup Groups (which I’d HIGHLY recommend everyone seek out if you’re in an area that has a good community) as I was fortunate enough to meet some very successful private investors in London, and from there I learned the art of Trend Following and everything changed. Not everyone needs to pay for an education, because I didn’t.

I’ve been self sufficient for 3 years now and made the decision to move into Charting Research / Mentoring seriously around 18 months ago due to the requests I was receiving via my social media platforms… and things have grown organically from there and now I network with some of the world’s top Technical talents, which allowed me to bring in a name like Sean McLaughlin.


QUESTION – What failure in life later set you up for success?

SAM- Easy… I went into a meeting when I was at Deloitte that over-ran by around an hour, by which point, I had been trading with a LOT of leverage on a Brent Oil position, I had no stop loss in place and walked out that meeting to a £4k loss (which erased a lot of profit that I’d built up).
At that time, it was a HUGE amount of money for me to lose, and I was physically sick and had that holy shit moment, that most of us have had, where I either had to change things or give up.
I chose to find help.


QUESTION- What makes a successful trader in your opinion

SAM – This might be the point where I could give a generic answer and say things like “learn from your mistakes” or “find a mentor” or “work on your mindset” but I’m not going to do that.
Instead, I’m going to just give my brutally honest take, and this is something that I see with a lot of individuals that approach me.
The one thing every losing trader lacks………. Risk Management Discipline.
Discipline and having complete and utter respect for your risk management strategy is absolutely the number 1 priority with any investment decision.
Forget Technical Strategy, forget Fundamental Strategy… Risk is key.
If you have no understanding of the core concepts of Risk Management & Allocation, you’re as good as dead playing against Wall Street.
I also see many Day Trading “gurus” advocate tight stop losses and finding entries on 5 minute charts… I understand a very small % can do it well, but I’d also highly encourage zooming out to Daily & Weekly timeframes, it’s something that completely changed my view on Technical Analysis.
Who wants to read one chapter, when you can read the whole book right?


QUESTION – How important is having a balance life and how do you acheive it?

SAM – I think it’s somewhat important. I mean, I’m one of those guys who loves Technical Analysis, I love deconstructing charts, and being able to present a thesis… it’s my purpose and I get a lot of my fulfilment from that and to be happy, all I need is my laptop. (which some reading might find a bit sad)… but I’m happy, that’s what matters.
I also love travelling, I’m up to 50+ countries I think at this point now, and if anyone reading this loves to travel… my top 3.
** Galapagos Islands
** Vietnam
** Croatia
Like everyone, I enjoy the gym, triathlon training and as I’m Scottish, we’re well known for our love of whiskey… something I’m not shy on enjoying when the winter kicks in and I get the fireplace going.


QUESTION  – What advice would you give your younger self?

SAM – In a personal sense, I would want to tell myself to not waste my early adult years getting blindingly drunk every weekend, and while I look back on a lot of fun nights, it just wasn’t productive, and I might have preferred to focus on things like health and fitness… yes… I know it sounds boring, but as you get a little older, those become important.
In a Trading sense I don’t know if I would have done anything differently. We’ve all had to go through our own personal car crash to arrive at our destination, and we’ll all continue to have mini car crashes along the way, but the difference for me now, those mini bumps represent a small % of the overall capital which keep me in the game much longer than those that throw the Hail Mary’s.


QUESTION – What outside good advice or bad advice do you often hear and what are some of your favorite book(s)

SAM – You can be anything you want to be… no you can’t.
You can be anything that your abilities allow you to be. It’s always been a saying that’s irked me a little.
Good book? Principals by Ray Dalio. An exceptionally well thought out approach to living life with principals… and it happens to be written by one of the world’s best Investors. Highly recommend.

THANK YOU Sam for taking time out of your busy day. Our readers can contact Sam at the site below.
Technical Research Analysis

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