- Tell us a bit about your background.
I grew up in leafy Hertfordshire, on the outskirts of London, in a town called Borehamwood, made famous for its film studios. I remember being a bit of an entrepreneur from a very early age, supplementing a paper round with a paid-for photocopying service to classmates by using a photocopier at my father’s office which of course was free.
I was lucky enough to be able to attend a good school in Queen Elizabeth Boys School, Barnet, working part time at a number of retail outlets in different industries, which is something I would recommend all teenagers do, especially those going to an all-boys school starved of female contact.
By the time I graduated university with a degree in financial studies and accounting, I had already built up a small but profitable portfolio of penny stocks, primarily in the mining sector. 6 years in the banking world followed, initially with HSBC, then Bank of Ireland and Bristol and West, and this provided a solid grounding in the world of international finance and allowed me to really fine-tune my skills and experience in investment.
- How did you get interested in finance/trading?
My love affair and fascination with the financial markets begun shortly after my 13th birthday. Along with the usual assortment of shavers, pens and briefcases every Barmitzvah boy gets given, I was gifted 20 Pounds worth of penny shares in a small UK-based printing company called Rotaprint. (You never forget your first!) The company did actually go bankrupt about 5 months after my gifted ownership (I hope not related), but by then I was already hooked on the concept of profiting from the financial markets.
- I heard you had your own investing firm. Tell us about that – the challenging parts and the rewards.
Having qualified as an investment advisor and benefited from an interesting career in banks, I took the plunge and set up for myself. I managed to obtain some small funding from a governmental programme aimed at assisting young entrepreneurs which proved a godsend, allowing me to finance some early marketing and slowly but surely I built up a good strong client base, renting out a small office (more of a broom cupboard) from a friend.
The most challenging part of running my own investment firm was the self-discipline needed. Having purchased my first property aged 27, I turned a spare room into an office and it was the first time in my life that my self-discipline was truly tested. Every successful trader must demonstrate self-discipline and being the owner of my own business and responsible for so many aspects of running a business meant the need for self-discipline was heightened even further. It did prove a challenge for a single person in his twenties but I learned a great deal about the investment industry and more importantly myself in this period and am forever grateful for having that experience.
I loved being my own boss and being able to dictate to a degree my workload. I also loved the interaction with clients and being in a position to improve their financial circumstances and this is something that still gives me great pleasure today.
- You were in the Forex world before changing to binary options – can you tell us about the differences? The advantages of each? Where are you happier?
After selling my company and the client bank, I took a bit of time out to enjoy life, pottering around on a boat on the East Coast of England for a while and even dabbling in antique and art dealing. However, the lure of the financial markets proved too strong and it wasn’t long before I found myself as Chief Analyst at a large Forex broker. It was here that I really developed a knowledge of the currency markets, having previously specialized in stocks and commodities. It was also here that my first articles were published on DailyForex!
At the time, the Forex industry had undergone a vigorous change, no longer the preserve of just financial institutions and professional traders. Regulation and advances in technology made Forex trading accessible to anyone with a credit card and a computer, which is a similar story with the meteoric rise of Binary Options.
There are many major differences between the Forex and Binary Options industry; the main ones being that Binary Options carries less risk, is more fast-paced and offers those with little or no financial experience the opportunity to profit from the financial markets. Remember, in Binary Options there is no leverage involved, and you do not physically own the asset itself, just merely speculating on its direction. For me, Binary Options wins over Forex. I love the quick nature of Binary Options, the fixed and fast returns and the varying innovative methods of profiting from an assets movement.
- Why did you decide to join YesOption?
I made the move over to Binary Options in 2013, becoming chief analyst at YesOption. What really impressed me about the fledgling company was the people and the ethos. The team behind YesOption are all traders themselves, with many years’ experience in the financial markets, both in large banks and in Forex firms. Everything at YesOption is aimed at improving the whole trading experience and ultimately making it more profitable for its clients. YesOption were the first to have Forex and Binary Options together from the same platform and account, which allows profiting in all market conditions and ensures that anyone can implement a successful trading strategy from 60 seconds onwards.
YesOption are committed to customer satisfaction and this has been recognized within the financial trading industry with a number of awards, including the highly coveted DailyForex Best Technical Analysis Award for 2014.
- Since joining YesOption, have you seen the binary world changing?
In just a short space of time, the Binary Options industry has undergone massive changes. More and more companies have sprung up, regulation tightened and the industry as a whole has become a lot more transparent and a lot more exciting – all to the traders benefit. Advances in technology have enabled companies to offer more instruments to trade, whilst increased competition has pushed the return amounts higher – meaning traders have more ways to profit and more profit to be made.
What is exciting about Binary Options is that it is still developing and growing. Forex kind of reached a peak in terms of development a few years ago, whilst new assets, new instruments and innovations are happening in the Binary Options world all the time, making it something that both excites me and intrigues me.
- How do you feel about the state of the markets these days?
The markets in their current state offer something for everyone. Many analysts believe that the markets are a true reflection of the underlying fundamentals in a market and with good cause. However, as a planet we are getting smaller and smaller. News from around the globe travels quicker than ever before and right now there are so my geo-political concerns in so many places that fundamental analysis cannot be ignored.
Without the aid of a crystal ball, it is nigh on impossible to predict what is going to happen, but what I do know is, that there is plenty of profit opportunities to be had right now, with strong volatility ahead in all sectors
- Tell us about your other activities:
Being married with a 9-month-old baby means, any other activities are limited to baby friendly ones. I still enjoy sailing when I can and still very much enjoy watching my beloved Tottenham Hotspur (a football club) but the bulk of my activities these days involve nappy changing, preparing bottles and trying to catch whatever sleep I can get. Saying that, I have got quite into the whole Bitcoin and digital currency revolution and am intrigued to see where it is heading. I have been devoting more time researching and trading BTC/USD and am fascinated by its unknown future and raw volatility.
- Do you lecture or give seminars?
I used to hold webinars and seminars when working within the forex industry, however these days I work closely with the HNW clients of YesOption on an individual basis, but still give the occasional webinar. I have also been asked to speak at a few seminars regarding Bitcoin, as well as being a contributor to the BBC regarding digital currencies.
- How many hours would you say is a good time to watch the markets daily? How much is too much?
That is a great question because I am a firm believer that traders should spend all day glued to their screens. Unfortunately, for me it is part and parcel of my job, but successful traders only focus on a couple of assets at most anyway. This means they should know and understand every little nuance about those assets and do not need to spend hour after hour staring at the screens. This is a big danger when spending too much time watching the markets that you are unable to see the wood from the trees. I personally recommend spending no more than 1-2 hours a day watching the markets. Anything more than that and you run the risk of being distracted and losing focus on a game plan.
- What advice would you give to investors, both new and experienced?
Well the obvious piece of advice to all investors is to do their trading with YesOption. However, in all seriousness I would recommend to new traders to know thy asset. Focus just on one asset, two maximum and study that asset until you know every little thing about that asset. This will make investment decisions easier and more profitable. I would also recommend to both new and experienced traders to manage their time and money effectively and within their own individual capabilities.
Trading and profiting from the financial markets isn’t rocket science. Do you your homework, stay disciplined and committed and learn how to deal with losses as well as wins, as both will happen, but how you react to them both will affect your ultimate success in financial trading.