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FXCM Bounces Back over 70% to $19 on NYSE


FXCM, long considered one of the strongest and most reputable Forex brokers worldwide struggled notably in 2015 on the heels of the Swiss National Bank catastrophe. Among other dramatic turns the brokerage was forced to take out a loan and to sell off some of its assets. Then, in September, FXCM was notified by the New York Stock that it was not in compliance with the continued listing standards set forth in Section 802.01C of the Listed Company Manual of the New York Stock Exchange because its price had fallen below $1 per share for a period of over 30 consecutive trading days. At that time we’d speculated that anyone with confidence in the industry and in this leading company could turn a nice profit by investing in its undervalued stock.


At the same time FXCM confirmed its confidence in the company and presumed that it would turn things around – and it seems that this confidence was not purely smoke and mirrors. FXCM has come through for its clients and anyone who invested in the stock over the last few months and held their positions has likely seen massive profits – at the close of trading yesterday FXCM shares were valued at over $19. On a day where the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 367 points, this is an even more notable victory. The price is more than trip the $5.20 that the stock was priced at only last month.

The turnaround in stock price is significant for FXCM, as it demonstrates confidence in the brand not only by its own traders but by other financial investors who are looking to invest in solid growth. We look forward to seeing what company brings forth in 2016 – and we’re expecting greatness.

Interview with David Katz: aka TradingFibz

David Katz- The Trend’s Huzefa Hamid had the pleasure of interviewing David Katz, a.k.a. TradingFibz. David originally came from a background in teaching and medical sciences. He educated himself in trading, built his own strategy and became a profitable futures trader. Today, in addition to teaching in the medical sciences in Arizona, he runs a trading room for people of all levels to teach them his strategy.

[Huzefa Hamid] David, thank you for speaking with me today. Let’s begin. Tell me a little bit about your background. What was your journey into the markets? What were you doing before you discovered the markets?

[David Katz] The first education I need to be thankful for is to my parents for introducing me to the concept of stocks and bonds from an early age. Every kid wanted a Tonka truck; for me, it was the occasional bond or stock in companies like DeBeers that made me first interested in the market. I grew up in Chicago where I went to school, University of Illinois, for a degree in education. I became a teacher, an instructor, but I also had a passion for the sciences. I was always interested in numbers, business, from the time of high school but education seemed to be my path. I progressed through the years till about I’d say five years ago where I had an opportunity to organize a stock market competition in an economics class that I was teaching here in Arizona to middle school and high school students. Over the course of a year and a half or so, we won many of those simulations. I then spent three years with the Arizona Counsel of Economic Education; I was the state coordinator for the “international simulation” for I did workshops one after the other here in Arizona. Let me regress a little bit: some years after college, I decided to return to medical school. I felt a lot of that education I received in med school – the analysis, the critical thinking, and the problem solving – gave me that foundation to look at the markets the way I do today. But prior to all of that stock market simulation stuff, about ten years ago I started with commodities and invested on the probability of pullbacks in the market, for example, what was the likelihood of cotton or soy beans to go up the next day after a pullback in price action the day prior. Alongside that, I was reading the Investor’s Business Daily which started a foundation in my trading. Shortly afterwards, I met two individuals who introduced me to free local workshops that met once a month on a Tuesday night in Arizona with about 50-60 people showing up. That’s when I got exposed to Fibonacci patterns. I ended up taking a couple of classes being offered on Fibonacci and I implemented what I learned with my students and that led us to those wins in

I used to cut out a lot of articles from money magazines only to realize that it was month old news and I had to be current with what’s going on and that’s probably why I got interested in day trading. With the Fibonacci analysis and so much of the classes and workshops I’d attended and even taught, it all started a platform for me to feel comfortable speaking about trading more publicly. My interest was always to promote my knowledge and offer my education. Through the coordinator of I had the opportunity to attend a workshop at the New York Stock Exchange Euroenext and from that moment forward I just knew my passion was to become a day trader. I opened up an account with thinkorswim about five years ago. My background in education said that I need to share what I know with many traders. I started using Twitter. I started using StockTwits. I opened up a YouTube channel. I started a website and I just started sharing what I knew. And, yes, I went on a quest to find the holy grail of trading but the truth was that I had a good foundation in Fibonacci and when I started picking up a couple of things I started to come out with my own trading strategy and eventually opened up my own trading room community. For about three years it was free of charge and now I’m with Marketfy which brought everything together.

[HH] With the move to always be current and day trading, did that make you move towards Technical Analysis over Fundamentals?

[DK] To me, both are just as equal and as important. Technical Analysis became very important to me because if I am going to be an intraday trader, fundamentals I found did not have much basis. I consider myself to be a “crumb” trader; I’m not moving big lots. For me, it’s running off the tails of the big players and for whatever fundamental reasons they believe the price action should move, well I’m just going to follow on that. I do use fundamentals or what you can call value based trading in my long-term investments and I combine that with my technical analysis. When it comes to my day trading, to me it’s about technical entries and I leave it as simple as possible. That’s where I’ve found the Fibonacci to really line up including the use of what I’ve found to be the bread and butter of my trading, the Moving Averages.

[HH] Was there a point where you transitioned from knowing you can make a living from this to being an actual “paying-your-bills-trader”?

[DK] I do still teach in the classroom but I do that a lot around my trading hours. I like to have physical appearances in front of my students (I’m a trained podiatrist that teaches anatomy and runs a trading room!). However, the point at which I realized that trading can be profitable and can be sustainable was when I had a daily goal of a certain amount (I know some traders will say you shouldn’t have a daily goal but a lot of times that daily goal has saved me from getting into any other trades during the day and give it back to the market). I do this a lot with my new traders: I say, if you can make $200 a day, multiply that by five, multiply that by the weeks in the year, and that’s either a nice supplemental or that’s a nice foundation to say that you can make a living at this and not give money back to the market. The moment I realized that this could be something more than just part-time, I took more time to sit down at nights, learn more about it so I could feel that I had more confidence when the markets opened the next morning.

[HH] When you set your daily goal, did you also have a maximum drawdown goal?

[DK] If your goal is $200 per day, you should as a golden rule shut your trading off if you’re down by $500 in that day or if you’ve had two consecutive losses that day (even if you’re account is up by that point). Otherwise that will lead to revenge trading.

[HH] Could you describe how you use Fibonacci and if it is different from the standard Fib retracements or extensions you most people using today.

[DK] I was trained mathematically in the natural order of numbers and that’s how I came to appreciate how Fibonacci patterns work in the market. For me, Fibonacci makes total sense when you look at what the series means mathematically outside of trading. When I started applying that to the charts, I found that Fibonacci retracements was the first foundation to understand its application. Now, how do I use it? If I see price action moving in a certain direction and it crosses a moving average and then it pulls back, my first question is how much did it pull back. Did it pull back one of three numbers: 38%, 50% or 61.8%? As long as it hits one of those numbers, I will throw up a Fibonacci extension. I have some very clear rules about the three points that I use to place the Fibonacci extension. Based on my experience, there is an 85% chance that price action will move towards what we call Target 1. While Fibonacci can work very well on a daily chart, I’ve found that they can work just as well on an intraday chart.

[HH] What are your Fibonacci extension levels?

[DK] 50%, 100%, 127% and then 161.8% and 261.8%.

[HH] With the objective rules for your Fibonacci points, does that mean two people in your trading room should independently of each other arrive at the same Fibonacci points?

[DK] Absolutely.

[HH] Can you talk a little bit about the pivot points you use.

[DK] The most important lines that should be added to a person’s chart are the daily gap which is the settlement close of the cash from the day prior and the daily pivot which is the prior day’s High + Low + Close all divided by 3. That zone, or gap pivot zone, sets up an area which I can show you on numerous days can be very choppy unless price moves outside of there. It should be avoided. There’s another line that I use called the average move up and the average move down. I’ve been using that for about a year. This has become unique to my room where we see price action for 3.3 days out of the week hit that line, or 79% of the time. That line comes from taking the difference between the open and the high and then the open and the low, and then you take the average of those differences over the course of time and you get those numbers. For example, [at the time of this interview] that line is 75 ticks upside and 91 ticks downside for the Russell index futures. It’s an amazing line or target when the trend is in play. That’s not to say that’s the official line for the day and nothing else counts.

[HH] Did you discover that line yourself?

[DK] I won’t lay claim that I have not have seen it anywhere because I really don’t remember but I can tell you that I built the spreadsheet for it. I did not take that from anybody. I remember starting to plot it but I can’t even tell you where I got it from anymore. I might have adapted it from another source. It’s nothing too proprietary, I share with anybody who wants to know. As long as someone has the data, they can easily come up with the lines. Besides those lines, I put up the cam lines, the daily support & resistance lines. I don’t use them as targets. I just want to see where the majority of traders are looking to say where price might bounce. If I’m in a trade, I just manage it with a stop anyways and those lines do not matter. I just call it the macro view and I like to see where the big picture is always.

[HH] Do those lines count towards your entry rules?

[DK] For the entry, the most important lines are the daily gap and pivot, I would not enter a trade inside that zone, and I have the 25 minute open range (a lot of people use the 5 minute open range) because momentum tends to move outside of that range. If price doesn’t move outside of that range, I will adapt my trading style differently for the day.

[HH] Why do you use Heikin Ashi bars over regular bars?

[DK] They’re a trend bar and they remove the emotion of trading and. A Heikin Ashi bar shows you that price action is remaining in a trend. It removes the emotion of the regular candlesticks that will tend to vacillate back and forth and will scream at you, Oh My God, this trade is going south on me! In the meanwhile, the Heikin Ashi bar is still showing you to be in trend and it will keep you in trend. I use the Heikin Ashi once I’m in a trade to stay in a trade. Just to reiterate, I use the Heikin Ashi bars not for price action, but for trend action. I still use a regular candlestick for my entry. But Heikin Ashi bars are to remain in the trend once the trade is in.

[HH] How many different types of setups do you have?

[DK] I have two key types of setups. The first one is for a chop action day where price action is moving sideways. And if I have a trending trade that is setup number 2.

[HH] But you often don’t know if the day is going to be a sideways day or a trending day. How do you take that into account?

[DK] I can usually tell if it’s a trending day or chop action day within the first thirty minutes.

[HH] Is there a ruleset for you to know that?

[DK] No, it’s a visual of price action.

[HH] Once you’ve made the call that it’s, for example, a chop day, would you only then use Setup #1?

[DK] That’s correct. Setup #1 is a get-in and get-out type of a trade.

[HH] What kind of performance for your strategy do you try to hit?

[DK] As a daily goal for a starting trader, my specialty being trading the future indices, you get in and get out and make your $100 or $200 for the day. Over time, of course, you can increase the number of contracts you trade and increase your profits. I’m a very patient and disciplined trader so I don’t take every single trade. On a typical day, there are two or three setups that work in my favour (and being a trend trader, I’d rather ride the length of that trend of the price action). I always stick to my trading plan. When I waiver, I lose. The entry is very precise and the exit is an automatic setup. I always trade with a stop. It’s very rare though that I finish the day in the red. That’s not how it all started! Over time I’ve become a more profitable trader.

[HH] Where do you trade? What are the trading hours you keep?

[DK] I have two monitors (nothing like some of the pictures you see which have four or eight monitors up!). I have a laptop also to make three screens in total. My hours are from the US open (7:30am ET) to the US close (4pm ET). I trade from home. There’s no extravagant setup and I don’t need to rent space for any of this. I have an audio microphone that I run through my chatroom as well as through my screen share application so people are able to hear me from two different sources. I tend to open up the room anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour before the market open but trading doesn’t take place until at least the US volume is in. I tend to sit out the first thirty minutes of trading (you could say that’s in addition to the strategy). There are conditions that I will trade in the first thirty minutes but I find the first thirty minutes to be a very volatile time so I tend to remain out of that especially with economic data coming out. I got tired of trading outside of US trading hours and tired of trading in the first thirty minutes where I lost most of my money. So my trading hours are generally from 8am ET to 4pm ET, and just like a regular workday – I’m in here all day for all the traders.

[HH] Let’s say a member is trying out your room for the first time, what does their learning curve typically look like (assuming they know how to use their trading platform and execute trades)?

[DK] I’d say anywhere from three days to maybe a week. I also offer one-on-one mentoring to help. And I offer my template for the thinkorswim platform so they just download that and everything will be set up.

[HH] Three days isn’t bad at all. That means by the following week, you should find people finding their own trades and feeding that back to you?

[DK] Yes. Plus I always encourage new traders not to trade live until they’re making sufficient monetary reward from their simulated trades.

[HH] Tell us about the service you provide?

[DK] I give the transparency of a live trading room. Come on in, let’s talk. I’ll show you my live trading dome. That to me stands out more than anything I can ever write.

[HH] Have you looked at your strategy in the context of spot Forex?

[DK] I had a webinar recently and right after the webinar I had that question. So I tweeted the EUR/USD chart with a beautiful setup. There was exactly no difference. I used a 10 tick range chart and I found it didn’t matter what Forex pairs we looked at – there were setups all around. If you’re trading Forex, this strategy works 100% exactly the same.

[HH] Thank you David!

Interview with Nenad Kerkez

You were an analyst at Admiral and at Platinum Investment for many years. What made you move over to currency trading?

Let me tell you about my background first. While I was doing the analysis I was also trading. When I start trading seriously I also felt obliged to help traders make money. I started doing that on Forex Factory ( the biggest forex site in the world ) on EURUSD thread. Doing the analysis without trading is just…not right. I did that on small account but as you already know, making 3 % on a 100 USD account is the same as making it on 1.000.000 USD account. The difference is the money. On 100 USD its 3 USD on 1m account it is 30000 USD. But when trading we are calculating in percentage. 3 % is always 3 %.

I have soon found out that 70-80% of my analysis is correct and I started trading.

How did you get the name ‘Tarantula?’ 

Tarantula is a spider. Spider makes swings. Up and Down, Down and Up. I don’t care whether the currency will rise or fall. I am there to set the trap ( as a spider ) and get the pips. Spider is waving her web up and down, just as I do. Taking the swings in both directions. And don’t forget, Tarantula is a spider King hahaha.

Your thread on Forex Factory (Spider’s Den) is among the most read and popular proprietary threads on the whole Forex Factor with 2,150,000 visits since you opened it 2 years ago. How did this thread become so popular so quickly?

Actually its more then 4.000.000 now probably as they removed the counter some time ago.
I think it is because quality is always perceived quickly. I made FREE calls, free setups and actually people were making money with it. Its very unique because it transparent. I always put Entries and Targets. Its like i am teaching traders to fish. All the analysis is backed up by charts, and PRE FACT analysis and charts. I never liked those POST FACT analysis. In that particular time people were bragging about the trades and analysis which was almost always AFTER THE FACT. I was one of the first traders who presented transparent and pre fact analysis as a must. All posts which I have been posting needed to show the logic behind it. That’s one of the many reasons why I trade Price Action and not some 97 USD pdf systems. I am the creator of CAMMACD ™ price action method and that is what I use for analysis, setups and Session Recaps with Admiral Markets- my favorite brokers.

Additional reason for a success is that I respect EVERY trader, no matter if she is a losing or profitable one. I am always there to comment, advise, suggest and admit even when I am wrong. If my trade is stopped out I am not afraid to say it and post it. On my front page ( you can see some comments from other traders.

One of the things you like to look out for as an entry opportunity is “breakout, pullback, continuation”. Would you agree that except for very short-term and small moves, you often have to wait a pretty long time in Forex for really good set-ups of this type to happen? What would convince you not to wait for the re-test?

Exactly. Some years ago, especially back in mid 2000s it was all about swings. Average ATR was huge compared to ATR as of now. So, BPC pattern was one of the very first breakout patterns I learnt. The times have changed. Its hard to get BPC except for short term trades, that why I apply 2 additional methods: Trigger Happy and Breakout-Retest ( without continuation ). BPC best works when pairs are having big movements in a zig zag ( trend ). Unfortunately conditions have changed , so we need to adapt.

You like to use shape patterns to judge breakouts. Do you think some currencies tend to print and respect these patterns more than others? For example we often seem to see them more these days in USDJPY and EURUSD, but not so much in other JPY crosses. Do you think price action in minor pairs is less valid as these prices are a “product” of their parent pairs?

Well to be honest the patterns are the “patterns”. Its about how you approach the trade.
The answer to your statement is obvious. USDJPY is most heavily influenced by BOJ statements about quantitative easing, which was caused by the country’s GDP declining by 7.1% in the second quarter of 2014. USD being strongest safe heaven is the exact opposite of JPY. When USD is gaining JPY is declining. This has led to double exposure as most investors were buying dollars ( especially due to strong fundamentals coming from US ) and selling JPY. On big trends patterns are definitely showing better then on small and weak trends.

All traders need to know that trading is heavily influenced by historical buyers/sellers and historically important levels. No indicator can tell you that, you need to spot those yourself.
Behavioral analysis has its place in psychology and trading is a psychology game ;)

The answer you your other question is “yes” and “no”. For example, look at GBPJPY. Again we have GBP weakness last few months and USD strength. Translated to trading terms is that GBP is getting stronger against YEN but due to GBP weakness its not so exaggerated as opposed to USDJPY.

Currency trading is always watched through the prism of base and quote currency.

I trade 25 pairs. When you trade minors you should always pay attention to correlations table.

Do you modify what you are looking for in entries and exits between different currency pairs? For example, do you expect EUR/USD to pull back more than GBP/USD? Or do you just treat every pair the same and expect technical to tell the same stories?

I always place technical target and look for a momentum push. Once I am in a profit I tend to place trailing stop. Because I am trading intraday my stop is rarely higher then 30 pips. In this volatile market, it’s an absolute necessity to use trailing stop for intraday trades. I did a webinar – “how to turn scalps into scalps swings and scalp swings into intraday”. So that is the strategy I have been using, as I have personally created it. So once I place the trade, I put my SL. Then I use trailing stop. I usually go for 15-60 pips on each trade.

When I do trend trades I open the position when the price has lost its momentum ( aka retracement ). For trends, I always want to sell higher and buy lower. For that we need a loss of momentum, so called retracement.

Do you use any quantitative statistics in your trading?


What is the best way for technical traders to avoid the trap of seeing too much confluence on the chart, which might spook them into exiting a good trade too early?

I use POCs(points of confluence) strictly for ENTRIES. I personally don’t look confluence for exits. Early exit is absolutely justified if price momentum suddenly changes. We have been witnessing a lot manipulation from big banks so once the trade is in the profit you should protect it. Many times price has been spiked at “the fix” time ( 1.15 PM and 4 pm gmt ) only to hit SL and then proceed in the direction you wanted. Trailing the stop is protecting a trader from rumors, unexpected events, power outages, macro economical shakeouts, strong news. All intraday traders are prone to above mentioned. Technical traders should learn the METHOD,RISK and MONEY MANAGEMENT. Targets are not the problem as long as they “feel” the market and trust their own analysis. As you know , successful trading is based on a TRIPOD:

1.Profitable strategy

2.Risk-management (money-management)

3.Trader’s psychology

I always say “If one leg falls- all will fall”

Trader’s assignments should be:

  • Primary – Not to lose money during any given timeframe period
  • Secondary – Gradually growing the account
  • Third – Make profits

Problem is that most traders switch the third for the first assignment.


Now if traders are suffering from undertrading symptom that is something else. They need to work on their psychology then. That is why I work on Psychology webinars with Admiral Markets. I want to educate traders to fully understand this profession. This is not a rocket science. But it’s still a science. I could talk and brainstorm it so much as there are always things which could be learnt and which most traders simply do not recognize. But it is also a thrill of this profession.

FX Academy Releases E-book on Momentum Trading Strategies

adam headshotAdam Lemon’s new e- book, Simple Proven Forex Strategies, recently released on, offers unique insight into the use of simple strategies in momentum trading.

Adam has worked in financial markets for over 12 years. His expertise in strategic Forex trading is evident in his lucid presentations of two expedient trading strategies, the Outside Bar and the Pin Bar strategies and in his analysis of the results of these strategies on two different candlestick patterns over several time periods for major currency pairs. His book differs from other such tomes in that he sets out to prove these strategies  by back testing  them under varying conditions and by justifying the results with statistical evidence derived from the historical data.

Lemon’s disclaimer that the use of these theories does not always have the expected results is commendable and comforts the reader with a feeling of honesty and trust as compared to other theorists who claim guaranteed positive outcomes when adhering to certain strategies.

Perhaps more impressive is how the author lays out his theories in a precise manner, outlining the step by step process for each hypothetical  currency trade and then explaining the reasoning behind each move. This is followed by common concerns that may arise with each theory and how best to deal with them. The back testing is conducted on three time frames–daily, 4 hour, and 1 hour and the author acknowledges openly when the results prove to be disappointing. The author goes on to judge each strategy by pair and timeframe by applying filters such as trading only during periods of high liquidity or session opens, and discovers that the application of such filters can dramatically improve the results and create tradable strategies for certain currency pairs

The book concludes with a table of historically profitable trades using these two strategies.

Lemon has written a well formulated summary of two common strategies used in momentum trading and the efficacy of their implementation in back testing their results. The author suggests that the book is not for beginner traders but that more experienced or discretionary traders will find the data useful. Considering how candid he is in the rest of his writings, this assessment should be taken literally.  However, the FX Academy also offers many lessons and courses for new traders, so if you’re not quite sure what momentum trading means, don’t worry – start slowly, and with the right courses, you’ll figure it out soon enough!

Learn how to translate these strategies into actual trades with free courses from DailyForex traders at FX Academy. Register now!

Interview with Chris Capre of 2nd Skies Forex

Chris Capre is the founder of 2nd Skies Forex and KronosFX. Chris sat down with Huzefa Hamid from DailyForex to discuss his journey into the markets from Yoga, to working for FXCM and then a hedge fund, and now running his own fund and providing educational tools for traders.Chris Capre of 2nd Skies Forex

[Huzefa Hamid]   What was your professional background prior to trading?

[Chris Capre]   I was a yoga teacher and yoga therapist. I worked with people who had injuries and they wanted rehabilitation type techniques to deal with that. I taught yoga for a total of 7 years but I’ve been practicing for a total of 13 years now every day. [HH: That’s quite a different field.] Some people think it’s kind of the opposite. Most people start off in finance and then they have an “aha” moment and ditch the suits and go on some sort of a spiritual quest. I did it the other way round.

[HH]   Why did you decide to be a trader? What was your journey into the markets?

[CC]   In late 2000 / early 2001, I realized I wasn’t going to build the financial career that I wanted to and do all the things I wanted to do through yoga. I started to look at other options and opportunities. I started investing and I got involved in mutual funds and the equities markets. But I was disenchanted with the fact that you can only make money so many hours of the day. At the time, I was working with a particular client of mine who was a doctor and who had cancer; he wanted to do some yoga therapy to make his body feel better. We became very good friends. He had invented a patent that Kodak had bought and had retired at 40 a deca-millionaire. One day, he came up to me, looked at me and asked: “When are you going to get a real job?” I was shocked by the question and asked him what he meant. He gave me a book about an American that goes overseas and becomes a currency trader and ends up doing some very interesting things in the markets [the book is “Ugly Americans” by Ben Mezrich]. He then told me he had a strange feeling I should learn currency trading and to read this book. After reading that book I signed up for a demo account, and after a month of demo trading I went live and never turned back. I had a very short incubation period. I found trading something that naturally made sense to me. I felt like I could look at the charts and get an understanding of what was happening and where I wanted to position myself. Technical Analysis and trading takes time to refine your technique and skill, just like hitting a golf ball or archery, which is something I do. And that is something that’s ongoing. But the initial part of it seemed intuitive to me.

[HH]   What are some of the early mistakes you made as you found your feet as a trader?

[CC]   Managing risk and emotions and the psychological aspects of it. Managing risk was something I had very little understanding of in the beginning so I was way over-leveraged in my position sizing. I started off trading standard lots on something that should have been a mini-sized account: it was a $3000 account and I was trading standard lots right off the bat. If I had lost my first few trades I could have been wiped out completely. Luckily I won my first 8 or 9 in a row so that helped to beef things up. About 6 months into it I experienced my first big loss. I had taken my account from $3k to $83k, but then I lost $10k in 5 minutes and then $25k in 15 minutes. So those big losses gave me my first psychological check which I hadn’t experienced up to that point. For that next 3 to 6 month period, I really got a first-hand experience of what were my psychological limiting beliefs, thoughts and conditions around trading, losses, success and failure. That was something that took a little bit of time to deal with and digest.

[HH]   Why the name “2nd Skies” – what does it represent?

[CC]   I was with a hedge fund after working for FXCM. I was with the fund for a year but I felt that it was time for me to go private; I had been working for other people for a long time and making them wealthy. Instead I could have been building my fund, which I had been trading with private funds very early on, along with my track record and client base. But leaving the hedge fund felt like it was a new horizon or a new sky that was opening up. That’s why I called it 2nd Skies.

[HH]   Tell us about the hedge fund – how you walked into that and your experiences there.

[CC]   I had been working for FXCM for about 2 years and I had done many presentations for them at expos and shows. There was this hedge fund that was going around scouting talent and I’d met them a couple of times but I was really enjoying my time at FXCM – it was a great environment to work in and they’re a great company. [HH: What were you doing at FXCM?] At FXCM, my work with them was as a broker, and eventually I built up a large client book, top in the company. I was also doing sales, audits for trade executions, working with gold clients, and education – both internally and externally. I did everything you could possibly imagine inside that organization as I wanted to absorb as much about the industry as I could. After leaving FXCM, I wanted to see what hedge funds were about (I had my own private fund at the time). So I got into contact with some of the people who had tried to recruit me in the past and one of them hired me pretty quickly. I stayed with them for a year before starting 2nd Skies.

[HH]   In a nutshell, what does 2nd Skies offer your customers?

[CC]   2nd Skies is really about teaching people how to trade the markets – not just the Forex markets, it can be stocks, futures, or commodities. We offer all kinds of tools for that. I have free articles and videos, daily signals and setups, and weekly market commentary. We also have online courses that are designed to teach people how to use the same systems that I use on a daily basis. These are same techniques that I use to build a successful trading psychology and risk management profile, and we help traders interact with other traders in a large community to share their trade ideas and setups every day. We have a pretty strong success rate: our reviews our consistently positive across the board.

[HH]   Talk to us about some of the emphasizing points you lay out in your Price Action module.

[CC]   I approach Price Action from a slightly different perspective than most out there. Most of the Price Action you see out there is pattern based, for example Pin Bars, Inside Bars etc. Those are useful patterns but those patterns are the result of Order Flow, not the cause. So those patterns are reactive, not responsive. I teach people how to look at the Price Action and read the Order Flow behind it. The bottom line is that there really are only a couple of facts about the markets. First, as long as there are buying and selling orders, the market will move. And second, the Price Action is a full manifestation of the Order Flow which is the sum total of the buying and selling orders out there. With my models I employ quantitative based data and strategies to understand the market. For example, how does something statistically hold up over time? How does this particular Price Action formation result in this being an extreme statistically? There are all kinds of things you can measure from a quantitative perspective, even a particular pattern’s effectiveness in a particular environment. So I approach it both from a quantitative perspective and from understanding the Order Flow behind it. Most people are just talking about patterns which keep people reactive and not responsive to the market. They think the pattern is the cause of the move and they don’t realize it’s the result, not the cause.

[HH]   There are lots of trading concepts out there. What’s made you pay attention to Ichimoku Cloud in particular and offer a separate course on it?

[CC]   I discovered Ichimoku in 2004 when I was working for the broker. Back then, working for a broker was a huge informational advantage because the broker had a lot more information than was available publicly. At the time, there was very little information on the Ichimoku Cloud and most of the information was limited to coming out of Japan and one translation and that was it. I started to explore and I really liked the trend trading concept behind it. It’s designed to give a lot less signals but it filters out a lot of false ones. It’s designed to capture trending and momentum type moves, discover future support & resistance levels and underlying reversals in the market. To me that sounded very interesting. Of course, Price Action is fantastic but somehow I naturally gravitated towards Ichimoku. The funny thing is that when I taught an internal class at the broker about it back in 2004, they all laughed at me and thought it was the biggest joke. Now at the same broker, FXCM, one of their largest forum threads is on the Ichimoku Cloud and they have it in six languages. It’s something that’s definitely expanded and hopefully I’ve been able to help bring that out into the world and give it some more exposure.

[HH]   Do you teach the Ichimoku Cloud in the standard way that you discovered it or have you modified it?

[CC]   For some strategies I’ve modified it but not the settings on the Ichimoku Cloud because the settings are based on a particular theory, the Ichimoku Time Theory. And the person who invented it, Goichi Hosoda, had spent 4 years studying number and time theory and he came up with some particular numbers that he felt were crucial. All of Ichimoku is based on that. So I didn’t want to disrupt those numbers and use alternate settings. I feel that his 4 years of study on number and time theory is far more intricate than mine. So I trust that. But I’ve made modifications to certain types of entries.

[HH]   Do you trade Ichimoku in a discretionary way or a rule based way?

[CC]   Most of my trading tends to be more rule based rather than discretionary based, so we have rules for all of our Ichimoku systems. When my students take the trades, a lot of them are getting in at the exact same price which tells me that you can trade Ichimoku in a rule based way. It does help to have some quantitative data and we’ve started to expand our analysis on Ichimoku, and I’ve employed some people who are very good at financial modelling to help me do that.

[HH]   Pivot Points are very well known. How do you treat PPs differently from what’s already out there?

[CC]   When I first started looking at Pivot Points I couldn’t find any quantitative based data or strategies out there. There was nothing and I searched everywhere. So I went out and built my own quantitative based strategies solely on Pivot Points. To build those types of things you just have to ask the right questions. I worked with a programmer and I would ask a bunch of questions, have him run the tests and see what data came out. When I found some interesting data points I spent time studying them to see if there was a system embedded in there, and in many of the data points there was. So if you’re able to interpret the data correctly and understand what it’s communicating, you’re able to find patterns and thus systems to trade.

[HH]   You have a mix of discretionary price action strategies and rule based systems. How do you know which of your own strategies you’re going to trade on any given day?

[CC]   It’s not that I am going to focus on one or the other and say, for example, this week I am going to do only Ichimoku; I have 4 charts per monitor and 6 monitors and that is more than enough to cover the instruments and systems that I trade. So when I turn on my monitors every day, I look at my charts and can tell if there’s something that looks interesting to me based on the Price Action or Ichimoku structure. I know my systems because they’re rule based. So I can see, for example, if there’s an Ichimoku setup coming up today.

[HH]   What timeframes do you enjoy trading personally?

[CC]   I’m looking at 4 time frames per instrument: Daily, 4-Hour, 1-Hour and 5-Minute. I can see right away at a glance if price is in a trend versus a range bound environment and then make decisions about which tools I’m going to use based on that.

[HH]   What trading hours do you keep?

[CC]   I get up every morning at 5am Central Time, do about 90 minutes of Yoga and meditation and then I’ll be at the screen 30 minutes before the New York Open and any major announcements. But before I do any chart analysis or trading, I actually donate to some non-profit organization or project around the world. I do this because I am grateful for what I have in my life, and definitely want to have an impact on others with the resources I have. To make money is one thing, but to have an impact on another person’s life is a completely different thing. So I give a donation, feel grateful for what I have, and then start preparing for my trading day by getting in a trading mindset using certain techniques. I spend the first 30 minutes familiarizing myself with what happened overnight. Most of my intraday trading is done from New York Open to London Close. New York Sessions just aren’t as volatile as they were back when I first started trading. Back in my early days the New York session used to be more volatile than the London session is today. And the London session was even more volatile. There’s a lot less opportunities in the New York session today; sometimes it can be really volatile but not as much. So at London Close, my trading phases down and at that point I’m usually just doing set & forget type trades or letting my current trades run. I then come back around the New York Close to see what patterns may have emerged on the Daily chart, and look for set & forget type strategies to take positions overnight and make money while I’m sleeping.

[HH]   Do you favour any particular pairs?

[CC]   I like AUD/USD, Gold, Silver, Oil, EUR/USD, EUR/JPY, GBP/JPY along with the European indices which have been offering some great setups lately; those are the ones I trade on a regular basis. Every now and then there are opportunities in other pairs that I like to take.

[HH]   Tell us about your physical workspace.

[CC]   I have a 400 square foot office in my home. We have two separate internet lines in case one goes down because if the internet goes down it costs me a lot of money. I have 6 screens and 2 separate CPUs: one for charting and one for trading because the bandwidth of the charting platforms can consume a fair amount. I have everything I need here so I trade from home. Of course, if you’re not doing any intraday trading, you don’t need a whole lot of monitors.

[HH]   Do you trade by yourself or do you have partners?

[CC]   I trade by myself but I have a trading team for my fund. They’re based in Europe: a few traders in Germany and one in France. We communicate but I trade my own personal accounts on my own.

[HH]   Tell us a little about your fund.

[CC]   The fund is called KronosFX. Its track record goes back to 2002 which is when I started managing private funds for family offices. I had some traders that I’d already been working with and after a while we decided to partner together in building the fund. About 2 years ago, we opened up KronosFX to go public and started attracting public funds. The typical investor we’re looking for is minimum $250k. We have just a little bit over $10 million under management right now.

[HH]   What things in life has trading enabled you to do?

[CC]   The biggest thing aside from financial freedom and time is that it allows me to pursue my philanthropic goals and visions. There are a lot of projects that I can support through the abundance that I’ve been able to create. In third world countries, they mostly need resources more than anything. And in second world countries, they probably have some resources but they don’t have the education per se to help them build that into opportunities. Statistics are out there that if in a second world country or in Latin America people learn English their upward mobility increases by 70% and that’s significant. By providing education and resources, that allows me to have impact. For me, making money at this point is not difficult, being financially successful is not difficult, but having an impact on people’s lives is something that’s completely different. Hopefully with the success and abundance that I’ve had I can make an impact in people’s lives. [HH: What are some of the philanthropic causes you go after?] In second world countries, there are these programmes called Access Programmes that are done through the governments and consulates where they teach the local residents in say Argentina and other countries to learn English. They sponsor students for 2 years. There is x amount of dollars per scholarship per student and we try to contribute a handful of scholarships every year. Another is they give microloans to various people that have businesses in second and third world countries; Vitanna is another one we support that focuses solely on education. There are some other projects as well that get clean water to villages in Africa. And then I donate to various other organisations such as to a monk who has an orphanage in northern India, his name is Lama Tenzin. So those are some of the areas that I’ve gotten involved in.

[HH]   What are some of your ambitions going forward?

[CC]   I studied neuroscience in college and my specialty was human learning and memory – how could I accelerate the learning process basically. A while back as part of one of my research projects I’d invented a “neuro-suit” that would help improve learning, feedback and performance so that we could optimize the central nervous system. The problem was this was back in 1998 and the technology wasn’t there. Now the technology is available and there are these great neuroscience labs that are building neuro-feedback suits that can look at your brain patterns, understand when they’re in optimal performance stages and then help provide neuro-feedback so you can repeat that process. I’m working with a neuroscience lab in the US that has the technology and we’re working on testing traders so we can enhance their learning curve, performance, and we can help them reduce risk so they don’t get into these situations where they get massive billion dollar losses on trades. Also for beginning traders, if they can start off with a neurological edge by training their brains in the right way from the start I think we can change their learning process. It can change a trader’s life. My original device was a physical suit but they’ve now got it down to a headset. So that’s a big project for me that I’m working on right now. Outside of trading, I want to have a big impact in the philanthropic world and get more personally involved: go to the sites, meet the people and get to know them. And I want to have an impact on improving the quality of the environment and the food we eat; there’s lots of information out there that the food we eat is highly toxic because of things such as the quality of soil we have today. Again, it is all about impact.


Tim Musomba Interview with

Tim Musomba is a trader, Live Room moderator and this year launched his managed accounts career. He has spent several years building his own unique self-developed method for trading the markets.

Tim sat down with the Senior Analyst, Huzefa Hamid, to have a chat about the markets…

[DF] How did your journey into trading begin? I’ve been a computer enthused since I was 13; I built my first computer and started a small computer repair business with a friend of mine when I was 15. My father had always been a businessman. When I was around 16 years old, I remember having conversations with him about various import/export business, as well as currency & commodities exchange. At 18, he gave me a Forex CD. It sat on my desk for a couple of years, and when I went into college I took a serious interest in it. I would say the combination of my love for computer technology and my father’s business focus found its connection in the financial markets as I entered university. In college, I met a good friend of mine, Jamal, whose father had worked with my father and who had also expressed an interest in the markets. We started to explore trading ideas together and the rest is history.

[DF] This year you’ve been a moderator for Tell us a little about that. I love it. It’s been a blast working with Colin & Greg and the clients. It’s a group where everyone has a passion to trade together. And the people are from all over the world – Europe, Canada, the US, Australia… it’s humbling to have people from all around the world hear what I have to say and ask me for my opinion. And Greg’s got the best sense of humour I have to add!

[DF] One of the backbones of your trading is using tick charts over regular time based charts. In simple terms, what are tick charts and why is it effective? I started using Tick Charts in futures because it calculates the number of trades per bar; after a specific number of trades, the bar is completed. It makes the charts cleaner because it’s based on activity. It gauges the flow of the market versus an arbitrary timeframe. It’s almost like a hybrid of a larger timeframe chart with a short-term view. What we’re doing is trading price action and Tick Charts looks at that more precisely than time based charts.

[DF] You also use a MACD and a Moving Average. How do you use it? Firstly, the MACD tends to be my Holy Grail of where the overall market is heading. It’s considered a very traditional tool amongst traders for very good reason – everyone wants to trade in the direction the market is going and MACD gives a great indication of that. So it gives me the bias I want to trade in – Long or Short. Secondly, the Moving Average – I use a Simply Moving Average just use for Pullbacks. Once the MACD gives me the direction, I look for pullbacks to my Simply Moving Average to help me pin my entries.

[DF] Typically how long are you in a trade? Most of my trades are between 45 and 90 minutes. Sometimes they can go on longer, but 80% of my trades fall within that timeframe.

[DF] Tell us a little about the trading education you’ve received – books or courses – and what you’ve found effective. The internet has been very effective for me; I believe it’s the most effective tool in this day & age; I’ve spent hours searching for what I need and developing my knowledge base from what’s already available online. I’d definitely recommend Investopedia and Wikipedia. Especially in my early days when I needed to learn the terms used in trading Forex and trading, those sites brought me the logic behind the indicators, acronyms and general concepts.

[DF] Over the years, have the markets changed in terms of how you can apply your methods? One thing that stays true is volatility and price action. My view point hasn’t changed in terms of how I look at the market technically. Of course, the markets change in terms of fundamentals and how price responds to fundamentals. But overall technically, my views have remained the same.inflatable bouncers canada

[DF] Are there any market conditions when your strategy does not perform well? During the holiday season, there’s always a decrease in volatility. I adjust my trading to take that into account – price action very often won’t break a range and I’ll trade the highs and lows of that range but still applying my system rules to the trades. Often, I’ll be taking profits earlier than normal just to account for the tighter trading.

[DF] How does news & fundamentals effect affect your trading? Not so much. I’d say the markets will always do what they’re going to do; you as a trader have to stick to what you know. Sticking to my game plan is where I’ve seen profit during news and fundamentals.

[DF] What trading hours do you keep? Ideally the London Open to London Close. That way when the London market closes at 10am CST, the New York Open has completed as well. I trade four days a week – Monday to Thursday.

[DF] What platform do you favour for executing your trades? Nowadays I use MT4; I’ve used different platforms as I’ve experimented with different brokers but as long as the spreads are good, any platform is viable.

[DF] What mistakes do you see other traders make? Patience. It’s a virtue I practice on a daily basis. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve seen how patience pays dividends. I’ve seen traders adjust a strategy in the middle of a trade out of impatience and I think it’s a huge mistake when they adjust their game plan without proper reason. Without patience, you’re forcing trades. And then they tolerate losing trades getting out of hand – the complete opposite of what you’re supposed to do! If you’re able to eliminate the emotion and remain strategic, then you’re able to change your entire outlook to the market.

[DF] What advice would you give new traders entering Forex? Discover a way to look and interpret the market in a way that you’re comfortable. I’ve noticed that a lot of beginners test everything that they read books and forums but without really understanding what’s going on underneath. When you know your strategy comfortably, you’ll trade it well and you’ll be in a good place mentally as well. And you’ll know how to adjust that strategy and refine it to get the best out of it. It definitely doesn’t happen overnight and many people get discouraged at the beginning. If you can get past that initial phase, you’ll find success.

Interview with Huzefa Hamid


  1. Start by telling us about yourself and your background: who you are, what you’ve done, and how you came to launch

My professional background is in financial services in London. I worked for an assortment of firms, some large such as Deloitte and PricewaterhouseCoopers, and a bunch of smaller ones too. As a trader, I started off trading my own capital, beginning with US equities & equity options and after a few years of that I moved to Forex. Early in my trading career, I gravitated towards Technical Analysis as my prime lens to view the market. Two books greatly affected how I chose to trade from the very beginning: John Murphy’s Technical Analysis and How I Made $2m by Nicolas Darvas. Trading is a lonely business, and in order to feel a sense of connection, I started writing a blog. I had about 15 followers at the beginning, all friends of mine. I was calling live trades on my blog and my friends were following along in their live accounts and making money. I began enjoying this as much as the trading itself. As the blog grew with my friends adding their friends to the blog I wanted something more structured. This ultimately led to my work with and the birth of I got access to’s international readership, support, feedback and other incredible resources. gave me and my trading partners a way to call the trades we were taking for ourselves in a secure and structured environment.


  1. What does have to offer traders? What makes it stand apart from other trading sites?

The structure of the room isn’t unique – there are other live rooms of this nature. But the quality of our trade-calls is unique. I’ve come to suspect most live rooms aren’t run by traders who are consistently profitable or earn their living from the markets. It’s like a chef who can’t cook but attempts to teach others. All of us, my two trading partners (Colin Jessup and Greg Ward) and I, trade for ourselves. Colin is also a professional money manager. Because we earn our keep from the markets, the members that choose to follow our calls are profitable too. We control risk, we have precise entries, we know that we have to get out when the market has proved us wrong, we have a high win rate with decent risk/reward… we do all the things you need to do to be successful in this business. And we expose our members to that same level of professionalism.


  1. You are also a Senior Analyst at Tell us about that.

About three years ago I started writing for My relationship with them grew beyond just submitting articles because we shared the same core values: teaching new traders to become better traders. By “better” we mean giving traders the right information and not just lots of information. And we have to present our information in a way that’s useable so it will affect their bottom line. Working with DailyForex has been tremendously rewarding: they’re an innovative company and they care about the community of traders. Plus they have an extraordinary reach in the industry. For example, they communicate directly with the heads of Boston Technologies (the creators of MetaTrader). In one instance, I was lucky enough to test the release of a particular broker’s new ECN platform and make recommendations on its improvement. Currently, we’re working on a very exciting project for building an online school that will guide traders from the ground-up. We aim to make it the #1 destination for new traders when beginning in the Forex market. Much of what is available now is static in nature – blocks of text on webpages or random video content that isn’t strung together in a meaningful way. Our education program will be organised and highly interactive to engage students by giving precise steps towards a successful trading experience. is putting together a considerable full-time team including programmers, content people and other professionals to execute this. One of my favorite quotes is by the 19th century English philosopher and scientist, Herbert Spencer, “The great aim of education is not knowledge but action.” is all about getting traders to take the right actions.


  1. You’re speaking at the upcoming Forex & Options Expo. Talk about this and the topic you have chosen.

This opportunity came about through I’m going to discuss a very specific candle setup that I use. I’ll go through the rules for the setup, and show recent trade examples. It’ll be an objective and systematic trade strategy. Anyone, no matter their level of trading experience, will be able to walk out of there with a profitable strategy they can apply immediately.


  1. Have you attended previous Forex & Options Expos or other MoneyShow expos? If so, what was the experience like? If not, what brought you to the Forex & Options Expo this year?

Admittedly this is the first time at the Forex & Options Expo. Every trader faces a tricky balance: sticking to their own system yet still being open to new ideas out there in the trading universe. Expos like this help to navigate this balance.


  1. You left the financial sector in London to trade full-time. What were some of the challenges in making that transition?

Making that transition was the hardest change I’ve made in my career – much harder than other career moves. Suddenly, everything changes when you trade for yourself full-time. When you’re working for a large firm, you have a sense of security, a ready made support network, accountability to a manager and even a work-social life. I miss I.T. support the most! Not having that ready made infrastructure and career development takes some adjusting. But the one thing about trading is that your own core skills, and nobody else’s are tested. You don’t have to worry about office politics or whether your boss notices you’re any good at your job. If you apply yourself well as a trader, it will show up in your account and nobody can take that away from you. It’s liberating.


  1. How does the financial sector differ in London from other locations throughout the world?

London’s time zone is the most advantageous: it overlaps with the tail end of the Asian Session and the morning of the US Session. In Forex, the London Open is the most liquid and gets the lion’s share of volume. Secondly, London has a more international outlook whereas the US is more domestically focussed. I think London has unique ties to the Middle East, South Asia and North America. It acts as a major bridge. So the international exposure you get in London is second to none.


  1. We love startup stories, so we’d love to hear about your experiences in founding

We had a lot of false starts –firstly, we had technical issues with our webinar software and secondly, it took us a little while to figure out how to trade ourselves whilst holding a discussion with participants. We had to figure out answers to questions such as: Do we explain the logic behind the trade during the trade or afterwards? Do we answer the most basic questions about Forex, such as what is a spread, or do we direct someone to other resources? How personal do we make the discussions whilst trading in a live room? It took us about 3-4 weeks to work out the kinks and develop a smooth operation. In fact, we refused to charge anyone a cent until we’d figured it all out!


  1. Let’s talk some more about the financial sector. It’s had a rough few years…do you think we’re finally on our way to a recovery?

Right now, it’s anybody’s guess. The only certainty is the overriding sense of uncertainty – and that won’t go away in a hurry. Aside from the fundamental economic drivers of the financial sector, its operations have come under greater public and political scrutiny. London will always be a key financial centre – it has a certain cultural appetite for the hard work it takes to be successful, it’s in a great time zone and it has a huge international focus.


  1. With so many firms reducing the number of traders that they hire, what would you say to the men and women on Wall Street who is currently looking for work in this sector? Is there a particular area where they should be looking?

What I’d say is develop your own independent trading skills. That’s key. If you want to trade for a bank, or for anybody, you have to be so passionate about it that you want to trade for yourself. Today, you can download charting applications and real-time price feeds for free or for very little for many markets. Follow a sector or a few currency pairs, figure out what kind of trading you enjoy – short-term or long-term, fundamental or technical, liquid Forex pairs or small market-cap equities… get a handle on the trading universe and how you fit in. Even develop your own track record by trading a few simple setups, and discuss these things in your covering letters and interviews. Regularly visit sites such as to find out how other professionals are doing what they do. Try out live rooms like so you can get an idea of real-time trade analysis and execution. I know that two of our members have plans to launch professional trading careers in the future. The traditional job hunting tools such as recruitment agencies and LinkedIn are invaluable. Use them to network and build relationships.

  1. Do you think that high frequency trading firms will continue to take the top trading talent away from banks?

I don’t know if the top talent is gravitating towards high-frequency trading. Certainly, high-frequency trading is more technically and mathematically complex than, for example, a trader drawing a trendline. But talent in trading is defined primarily as this: recognising and acting on low risk high reward opportunities. Now, if that takes a ton of math to do, so be it. But if a trader can do that with a couple a simple idea such as a candlestick pattern, then his or her talent (by my definition anyway) is comparable to that of a high-frequency trader. I know this isn’t the answer you’re looking for. I can tell you that I personally know bank traders who use complex systems at their desks but trade their personal accounts in very simple ways.


  1. What are some things that a job seeker can do to ace an interview at a financial firm?

When I interviewed for a trading job over a decade ago, I wrote in my covering letter the two trading books that had been invaluable to me in developing my own technical trading. And I added a short description of a trade that I did in my own account using a technical strategy from one of the books. Showing that level of personal interest, beyond just “I’ve attained these qualifications and worked at these firms”, helped me land the job.


  1. Is your firm hiring right now?

We plan to in about 8-12 months from now.


  1. What are the top 5 tips/recommendations you’d give to someone looking to launch a financial startup?

1. Understand the regulations and licenses you may need. 2. Know what value you’re giving your clients relative to more established players. 3. Make sure you present yourself professionally, whether it is through the web or other media. Ask yourself, if you were seeing your own service on the web for the first time, would you hire yourself? 4. When you set a time-limit for your goals, assume it will take three times as long to get there and have the resources necessary to sustain you. 5. Enjoy what you do and look after your health regardless of your work commitments.


  1. Do you have anything else you’d like to share?

A couple of things. Firstly, be ambitious in your trading. I’ve heard a lot of traders say that they’re looking just to make enough to supplement their income a little. But the effort and knowledge between making a little and a lot in trading is actually quite marginal. Secondly, I’ve heard a lot of people say that new traders are undercapitalised and that’s a major reason for failure. I don’t believe that. The founder of Bloom Energy, K. R. Sridhar, said, “When you don’t have resources, you become resourceful.” When you have little, you treat it very carefully, you find superior risk/reward, you control your risk very well… essentially, you bring out the best in yourself.