An insight into a former pit trader
As trading has gradually moved from the floor of the exchange to the electronic screen, I am lucky to have persuaded a very shy former pit trader to share his views as to why he moved to the electronic screen. He is undoubtedly one of the best pit traders in Singapore. However, to give in to his request to remain anonymous, I shall call him Pitt.
Pitt unlike many of his former colleagues was the first to recognize the importance of moving forward with technology. I managed to get a few questions put to him which he has graciously consented to reply. He is a man of few words but his brain is ticking all the time, make no mistake about this.
Without further ado, let me pose the following questions with his laconic replies:
- How did you start to be a student of Ray?
Pitt: In the year 2004 , when I realised that the pit was going to close soon , I told myself that what I used to do in the pit would not be the same as trading electronically. When the first seminar came along in Singapore conducted by Ray Barros on the nature of trends, I enrolled and became one of his earliest students.
- What prompted you to get off the pit to learn electronic trading?
Pitt: I was convinced I had to acquire a new set of skills and a totally different mindset to prepare for electronic trading which was slowly taking over the pits all over the world. Either I acquire new skills or I perish in the pit!
- Having commenced a course, what made you to continue with new seminars or courses run by Ray?
Pitt: After going through Ray’s seminar and getting to know him more, I realized that his seminars have helped me in my trading, especially the aspect on psychology. His concept and approach of the market suited my trading style. Whenever new and advance courses were held by Ray, I would be there as I believe in continuous education.
What did you find so different , trading in the pit, as opposed to trading electronically?
Pitt: Well, as a pit trader you had an edge over other players because you were right there where all the actions were. You would be the first to react when there was any breaking news. You could also lean on the tight spread of the bid and offer prices. In electronic trading , you are” blind” as you don’t hear the sound and see the sight of the floor. So most of the time you are lost, and the only way to be in the game is to have a set of skills and correct mindset.
- What are your observations of other pit traders who would not learn new methods?
Pitt: Sorry, no comment; I only see they are still trading.
- What is the single most important lesson that you take away from Ray?
Pitt: The most important lesson I learn from Ray is: trading is simple but not easy . To be successful we must always keep learning new things, and know when to change when market changes .
- Have you any advice for newbies?
Pitt: Yes . One other thing I take away from Ray is “ capital preservation “ . We need capital to stay in the game – ” no money, no talk” . If you lose all your capital , you will not have a chance to make back your money. So always remember the saying : “ cut your losses short and let your profits ride.”
ANA aka IDKIT