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Thread: A beginners manual to trading

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    Default A beginners manual to trading

    Hey all,

    I've decided to start this thread after learning what I've learnt in a very short time about Betfair trading. I called the thread a beginners manual because I figure my thoughts, mistakes, research will be mostly common for all people starting out. I'm bringing everything into one thread. Hopefully then people can read it when they are starting in one place. Follow the journey and realise they are traveling a path that although is less travelled, can be trekked with success.

    A bit about me. I'm 28, male, Australian and currently play poker professionally. I have owned small to medium businesses since leaving high school, rarely have I been employed (never like the idea of being told what to do). I am in a committed relationship and expect to be getting engaged, married and children in the next little bit. I have little to no experience in trading, technical analysis type stuff anyway. I do however have a solid basis knowledge of Betfair, racing, arbitrage and the likes.

    I have already been trading using the software Bet Trader. I'm very new to it, less than 1 week in fact. I'm using that software only because I own a Mac. After showing an ability to grind out some success with this I'll invest in Bootcamp or another PC grind machine and come across to Toy. Happy with BT for now but the forums are dead, they suck! Also, it hasn't taken long to realise who genuinely cares and who just wants to make money off you.

    What I mean by caring v seeing $ signs is the very decisive difference I noticed when talking to Caan v "Unnamed High Profile Trader at BT". I'm choosing to leave the person anonymous as the name is irrelevant. The content is the important part.

    Speaking to BT person, although I explained I'm a very visual learner and the ebooks/ hard copies won't exponentially increase my learning he basically said, too bad so sad. If you don't read the ebooks there is nothing else you can do. He only saw dollar signs, a person keen to learn, someone he could prey on.

    Now let's talk about my experience with Caan and how different it was. I approached Caan through his FB page. I explained who I was and what I wanted to achieve. Caan then gave me some top tips of his. They were generic but they were thought provoking. Then when I suggested that I might get his video pack he said "that's up to you mate", no pushy tactics, genuine intentions. His last comment was one that out of everything to this point has been the most motivating and profound. He said "as a poker player you should understand what it's like to have an edge. When you work out your edge (trading Betfair) then the money will roll in."

    For those of you that don't play poker, like everything in the gambling world, it's about having an edge. If you asked me what my edge was in poker I could give you a 1 min over arching idea of my edge in the game. Of course the little details and intricacies of how I do that each hand wouldn't be as easy to divulge. But it made me think, what is my edge? What is my strategy? At the moment I don't have one. I've got a trial of the software, had money in my account and started clicking buttons. I need an edge.

    Now I've read a lot of newbies complaining that the guys with proven record's don't release exactly how they make money trading. Well, firstly, like me explaining every situation and how I would play it in poker it would take much too long to do that. Secondly, guess what? You have to do some work yourself. People will help you with bits of information as you go along, but there is no bible that people can hand you or want to hand to you, that's their edge in the game.

    There is more than enough training and help out there but until you can answer someone that says "What's your edge when you trade?", your a long way off churning out the profit.

    Cheers Mac

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    Hi Mac. I was pretty much in your shoes about 18 months ago, I had just found out about trading and previously I was making good money with online gaming but was forced to "retire" after some wrist issues. Yeah the forum is pretty much dead which is sad to see (mostly just naps and "of the day" posts) but it has some fantastic threads and a ton of valuable information if you're prepared to do some digging. That being said, you won't directly find any edges here, or in any other place for that matter, whether you try paying for them or not. What you will find on this forum are tips, hints, guidelines, advice, encouragement etc which will help you find an edge of your own. But most importantly, you will find confirmation from some top traders that it CAAN be done (rofl pun since you already mentioned him so much) and that alone can be extremely motivating. There are more experienced traders than myself on the forum who could probably give you better advice, but since nobody else replied I will try and give you me own opinion and advice.

    For this starting phase it's probably best that you read about trading as much as you can, but also watch as many trading vids as you can find on YouTube. That will give you some basic idea about how trading different sports looks like, you will find out about different types of markets and different trading styles. Ideally you should try a bit of everything to see what suits your style/mentality best, you never know what you may discover and find interesting, but you will only start getting some real results after you fully commit to something (for example committing only to trading horses prerace). Whether you are successful or not will of course depend on many factors, mainly on how much time and effort you are willing to invest in it, but and also on how you deal with failure and loss. Everyone fails at the beginning, the trick is to keep trying until you find a way. Each failure is an opportunity to learn and to try again, this time more intelligently. And each successive attempt has a higher chance of succeeding than the previous one, because with each attempt you keep learning and improving. As a poker player your mindset should already be ready to take on such a massive challenge, especially if you already went through a similar process in poker.

    Whatever you choose to trade, you simply have to ensure that there's quality in the way you work and learn, otherwise you risk running around in circles for years without really getting anywhere, like so many people sadly do. Needles to say, if you adopt a methodical approach then it's possible to progress very fast and success can only be a matter of time if you have a structured plan in place. For example, let's say you decided to focus on horse racing prerace. For starters, you need to absorb all the (quality) info that you can find, watch all the (quality) videos that you can find and get familiar with the trading software. Since you have already identified quality info then there is no need to advertise any more than that! Next, it's time to get some actual ladder experience and to try and use the things that you've read about, it's best to avoid training mode and stick to minimal stakes instead. That way mistakes won't be as punishing and your emotions won't get in the way so much because you obviously won't care about pennies, so your focus will solely be on the strategies that you're trying out and not on the mental side of trading. After you get some consistency going it's probably time to up stakes and see how well you do with real money, this is where "emotions" like greed and fear of loss come into play. A quality way of working is to record all of your races and then analyze them afterwards, especially the losses. Make notes, try to find mistakes and reasons for that loss etc, try and correct those mistakes the next day and so on. Sometimes you will suffer a loss without really making any mistakes, it's just part of trading and you need to accept that. Analyze the races where you made minimal profit, see if there were opportunities that you missed and try to look for those same opportunities the next day. Watching a video of yourself trading will give you a fresh pair of eyes and you will notice things that are maybe impossible to notice while you are actually trading. Eventually you will start noticing patterns in price movements and market behavior so look for ways to best exploit that. After a while it should all become routine, for that you'll probably need a few thousand markets under your belt, perhaps less if you're clever and work hard at it. Whenever you hit a wall for whatever reason try and ask for help/advice on forums like this, or directly from known traders if possible. It all sounds like a lot of effort and it is, but the rewards can be quite substantial as you already know.

    That's just an example on how you could approach horse racing, it's quite a bit different for each sport and type of market but the main principles of learning are more or less the same. Good luck!

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    Concentrate on accepting losses, cut them quickly. Forget about making money, initially just focus on how you react when the market moves against you. As Kai says you can't always be correct but you need/require the correct mindset to accept that losses are part and parcel of this game.

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    Thanks for the last two replies guys, some good stuff in there. Thanks.

    What I expect to provide in here is a bunch of things I do that I probably shouldn't have. I will have some little gems of gold for future readers too of what I am doing that successful. I won't be providing my edge when I create it, but certainly my thinking processes to create my concept and edge I will be sharing.

    First no, no, that I did. Jumped in after watching a bunch of videos and started with some low stakes stuff. Made $150 over a bunch of races in a day. After that I thought I was a genius and started upping the stakes. I had barely been 24 hours into using the software let alone understanding the market. I mad a big mistake when trying to get out of the market with a lay. I clicked the green out button on the ladder screen, going back to the grid screen, I saw the green out still dynamically changing along with the price changes. I panicked and clicked it again, big mistake! This fired in another lay, both got matched before the off and then the races was off. I now was set to lose $500 if the horse won, of course it did.

    Second big mistake, this time, I ended up with $1500 on a horse at somewhere in Ireland. I was desperately trying to get the lay matched to get out for a loss, but I couldn't. In the end the horse ran, of course it didn't win @ $5 (would have been nice, learn a lesson and end up $7,500 richer), but maybe I wouldn't have learnt my lesson.

    In the end, I dropped $2,000 very quickly and realised I needed to pull my head in and learn a lot, lot more. Don't make the same mistake I did, confidence was high, but this is not ballet, you don't learn the dance quickly and just go through the routine and expect to print money. Many things to learn, big time to spend in the tuition process. Also many hours at the coal face to spend before you can make $.

    Cheers Mac

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    I will be recording all my sessions from now on. Being able to go back over them slowly, will certainly help with my progression. I will be referring to my life as a poker player often, I see a lot of similarities. In poker, we are forever reviewing hand histories to see how they could have been played more efficiently. It's very helpful to be able to slowly go through and review.

    Will be starting with my first review session today on the Australian mid week races.

    Cheers Mac

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    Focusing on pre race trading on horses for now. Expect to look at other options in the near future including; cricket, AFL, NRL, football & tennis.

    The above sports are places I feel ill have an edge in.

    Cheers Mac

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