[META] Recent scam/spam trends.. Or, a peak inside what it's like to moderate /r/forex
After a few...especially trying...interactions with unhappy ban recipients today, I thought it would be fun to share a little info on what moderators do to keep this place clean. :) The forex industry is full of shady characters. Any industry sitting on the intersection of financial independence, work, and money, is bound to attract them. There are many reasons for this; the lower barrier to entry compared to other markets, the lack of public knowledge on the subject, and greedy human nature to name a few. Moderating a subreddit dedicated to forex (or anything trading realted for that matter,) presents extra challenges beyond your regular sub. Marketers and scammers are super motivated, and MLM / referral marketing is extremely popular right now, which can turn everyday regular users into sources of spam. How we currently tackle this problem involves technology (scripts, bots, and automod,) a mod review workflow, and some smart sleuthing when needed. The mod team and our scripts aren't perfect though... but the few false positives we get are a very, very small fraction of all mod actions taken (~1%.) Unfortunately, that means some otherwise sincere members get handled roughly, and that can really suck.. I wish there was a better way, but the alternative is this place becomes a wild west and starts looking like your gmail spam folder. That said, here's my personal stats for JUST the last 24 hours:
Bans: 14[edit:16 nowbefore day's end, two more responding to a 'where can I learn how to trade' post.]
All mod actions (including bans, post and comment removal, etc..): 63
Ban appeals: 2
And I'm just one of the mods. . . So what scammer and marketing trends are we seeing lately?
Content marketing - Infographics with instagram handles watermarked in them, or a blog-like post with a embedded links to their own site.
Personal/direct selling - trying to move the conversation out of public view, usually by taking things to DM, or promoting a 3rd party chatroom where the rules here no longer apply.
Shills - Fake accounts used to boost the credit of another user, or service. It's no coincidence that a user asking about 'ULRA PRO SIGNALZ' will quickly have 5+ replies by low karma, new users, saying how great the service is. [edit:here's an example I just caught..]
Fake P/L Porn - We see this quite often. It's easy to fake MT4 account statements and MT4 Mobile screenshots, and new users can't tell the difference so these posts will get a lot of undeserved attention. When people ask how OP made such mad cash, a sales pitch is usually coming right up.
Honestly, it can be really frustrating at times.. luckily the scripts we have in place make weeding out ~80% of these jokers quite easy and quick. Heck, we had one scammer who blew through 12+ accounts over the last few days trying to scam people but none of their posts ever saw the light of day thanks to the spam triggers I've written. What motivates the mod team to keep this place clean? That's an easy answer: The majority of users here are new to trading. Making sure they aren't food for the wolves is important. But even with all the measures we take, some bad actors still get through. So here's where you can help: Use the report button! Anytime you see something that you think fits the descriptions listed above, or violates our sidebar rules, just report it. Even if you're not 100% sure, don't be afraid to use the report tool.. The worst thing that can happen is the mod team reviews and approves it, but the best outcome is you directly help keep this place clean and humming! :) And the mod team is always looking to improve where it can: I've already talked about what we do to scrub away bad actors, but one place we could do better is education. The plan is to rewrite a good portion of the wiki to include the following sections:
Spotting scams and scammers
How to properly compare brokers and regulatory bodies
The real reason why your old high school friend wants you to sign up to IML, and 10 ways to politely tell him to pound sand
No, that hot instagram model won't sleep with you if you buy her online course
Why all signal services are trash and can die in a fire
(Titles above are a work in progress ;P) Are you a good writer and want to help out with this? Think you can write up a killer wiki article on spotting scam artists? Message the mods and let us know! Finally, a reminder, we are still interested in taking on more moderators and will be revisiting that very shortly. If you'd be interested, read through this post and reply accordingly: https://www.reddit.com/Forex/comments/h7ok6k/seeking_more_mods_recruitment_thread/
WikiFX: the murky business and the murkier methods
https://preview.redd.it/1rf74ljv34l51.png?width=960&format=png&auto=webp&s=566235871ce22dd3078f0532dfb672bff6eb0707 The irony of financial markets is that this business that officially has got as much regulation as arms trafficking, has also got the same problem –- numerous illegal entities that evolve around the niche. Scam brokers, funds recovery services that rob the robbed traders, HYIPs, “learn how to make millions overnight” trading courses and a number of other schemes all tend to exploit the weak point of human nature – the belief that there is the magic device with the “MORE MONEY” button out there, that someone can sell you.
A thief shouting “Thief!”
Considering the above there is a high demand in society for truthful and unbiased information about the market players. WikiFX claims to be the provider of such honest information about brokers but in fact, makes money by blackmailing brokers and promoting any company that offers to pay enough in their rankings. WikiFX is a classic illustration of a thief shouting “Get the thief!” louder than anybody else in the crowd. The strategy works unfortunately and traders tend to trust WikiFx broker’s ratings without questioning what these ratings are based on and who sponsors this global brokers’ database.
Paving the road with some good intentions
Even the most horrible crimes against humanity were done under the cover of best intentions. Starting with the first crusades and ending with the holocaust. There are always some sound arguments, protected people and reliable methods. Ask any trader whether each forex broker must be regulated by a third party? The answer will be “yes” with a near 100% probability and this answer is totally correct. Know-your-customer procedures and some unbiased third-party control are essential for maintaining the overall transparency of any business in a sphere of finance. This is the argument that WikiFX starts with when promoting its service and there is absolutely no point to argue. Starting with an indisputable truth is a good strategy to win the debate. “The long-term presence on the market adds credibility”, – says WikiFX, and hears “yes” again. “Don’t you agree that the longer the company is in the business, the better?”. “Sure”, – the trader agrees one more time. The mission is completed. This is when the broker ranker can add any other criteria to their appraisal methods. Traders will tend to trust the service because they’ve agreed upon the most important criteria. The rest are minor details. But what if the rest of the appraisal methods are not just minor issues? What if these details can be the means to manipulate the facts as much as they want to?
Can WikiFX appraisal criteria be trusted?
If we take a look at any broker’s WikiFX rating, we can see that the criteria of appraisal are the following:
The year of registration
Market Making license
For example, this is what the top-rated broker’s summary looks like at WikiFX: WikiFX Forex com example https://preview.redd.it/t4ugtbt344l51.png?width=625&format=png&auto=webp&s=95fddf8434faf8938d1a3f18bbd5f1da2ceb47e4 Looks good. Really. Regardless of the attitude to this particular brokerage, the work seems to be done fine. All the regulators are listed below, the information on the used software, licensing, and years of operation is included. But what if we take some other random brokerage with one of the lowest rankings at WikiFX? NinjaTraderBrokerage WIkiFX Ranking https://preview.redd.it/pgyqp0u644l51.png?width=631&format=png&auto=webp&s=eb268faac83608a494c31a39eb1621f7132e3520 This is where the truth reveals itself. Once again, regardless of the attitude to this particular brokerage this is really easy to find out what they do, what licenses they’ve got and what kind of software they use. Suspicious clone? Seriously? If WikiFX staff cared enough to do any investigation prior to stamping that “Suspicious” mark on the brokerage, they would have seen that both domains, nijatrader com and ninjatraderbrokerage com belong to the same entity. NinyaTrader whois data https://preview.redd.it/2097lkw944l51.png?width=563&format=png&auto=webp&s=079cc4248b825a3cd941c6b691a67bb9769f4f7f If they cared enough to collect information on the brokerage from at least one reliable source, like Investopedia or any other similarly known database, they would also have found out that the company not only provides the brokerage service, but also is known for its trading platform with advanced technical analysis tools. But the only trading software that WikiFX considers reliable seems to be MT4/MT5. They simply ignore the fact that trading does not evolve around MetaTrader products, no matter how good and popular they are. WikiFX lowers the score of any brokerage with custom-developed software. We can clearly see this with the above example. Other criteria that WikiFX is proud to use for the broker’s appraisal are regulations. Using the same example let’s see how well they do the appraisal in this field. As you can see above, WikiFX used the “Suspicious Regulatory License” stamp for NinjaTrader Brokerage. And here is what The National Futures Association, that NinjaTrader is registered with as a futures broker has on its record: NFA regulation of NTB proof that WikiFX did not consider to be trustworthy https://preview.redd.it/di8fwkdd44l51.png?width=629&format=png&auto=webp&s=2de618d5df26bd8fcca99c51a6030f4bdfa7f776 We can’t expect every trader to know that any futures broker that wants to operate on the US market must be a member of NFA. This is the requirement of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission regarding the futures broker’s operations. But this is totally unacceptable for a broker ranking website, which WikiFX claims to be, to mark NFA-registered futures brokerage as non-reliable. By the way, did you notice on the above screenshot that NTB has obtained the NFA license in 2004? Yet, this does not prevent WikiFX from claiming that the brokerage has only been providing its services for 1-2 years only, instead of the factual 16 years of operations. We can long discuss the reasons that lie behind such selectivity of WikiFX but this random example clearly shows that any brokerage that provides access to non-forex derivatives trading or dares to suggest custom-developed software to its traders is in danger of receiving a negative review at WikiFX regardless of the factual reliability and regulations.
What lies beneath WikiFX selectivity?
WikiFX claims to have a team of professionals that are all involved in objective appraisal of broker’s services, licenses and used software. The methods used by these professionals remain unrevealed and as we see from the above comparison two similarly reliable brokerages can get any score from 1.0 and up to 10.0 at WikiFX, no matter what regulations they’ve got, for how long they’ve been in the business and what kind of software they use. This is difficult to say what lies behind such selectivity with 100% confidence. The first thing that comes to mind is that WikiFX might be affiliated with some brokers. The hypothesis gets even more realistic if we try to understand who sponsors WikiFX. There are no transparent built-in ads neither on the web-version of the website nor in its applications. There are no paid subscriptions for access to the database. This means that users sponsor the service with neither their attention to ads nor directly. Being the non-charity and non-governmental organization WikiFX can’t be sponsored with donations or a government. The only option that we have left is that brokers sponsor this ranking system directly, which automatically makes the whole system non-reliable and highly biased. The only transparent method that we know WikiFX uses to collect money is sponsorship fees they collect from their offline events participants. Let’s have a look at the exhibitors of the recent WikiFX Expo in Thailand. WikiFX Expo Exhibitors
TLC is a non-regulated investment platform that was founded in 2019
Samtrade FX is not regulated by any of the agencies that WikiFX itself lists as reliable
Forex4you is not regulated by any of the agencies that WikiFX itself lists as reliable
B2 Broker is a non-regulated broker
XDL FX is a non-regulated broker
VAT FX is a non-regulated broker Six out of sixteen WikiFX recent expo exhibitors do not have proper legal status according to the “standards” of WikiFX itself. This fact does not prevent them from promoting the services of these companies at their offline events. This conspicuous fact tells a lot about the attitude of WikiFX to common traders looking for reliable partners. Reputation is nothing but a sale item for this brokers’ ranking system.
Murky & Murkier
So far we’ve only discussed the facts that anyone can check himself using free tools and sources. It was not that difficult to discover that WikiFX uses non-transparent standards for brokers’ appraisal. It ignores the specifics of some brokerages lowering their scores due to non-standard derivatives they offer to trade or custom trading software. It also promotes non-regulated and non-licensed brokerages, which is 100% against the declared WikiFX values and mission. The rumors are that this company was also noticed blackmailing brokers with the purpose of making them pay for better reviews at WikiFX. There are also some signs that indicate suspicious promotion of WikiFX platform through social media and Quora. Some of the WikiFX positive reviews also look highly suspicious. All of the above is a matter of further investigation. Nevertheless, thousands of users keep relying on the information provided by this scam ranking system. It may even look like all these users are satisfied. WikiFX has got 4.5 starts at Google Play, which sounds good enough. However, positive WikiFX reviews use similar semantics and are also highly suspicious. Despite the high average grade, Google Play finds the following messages to be most relevant and brings them to the top of WikiFX reviews: Google Play most relevant WikiFX reviews https://preview.redd.it/kftutvcl44l51.png?width=532&format=png&auto=webp&s=1ccb74ee156388285a2fab711dd604945c04377c
You’ve got the facts now and it’s time to make your own conclusions.
Foreign exchange fraud is any trading scheme used to defraud traders by convincing them that they can expect to gain a high profit by trading in the foreign exchange market. Currency trading became a common form of fraud in early 2008, according to Michael Dunn of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission. The foreign exchange market is at best a zero-sum game, meaning that whatever one trader gains, another loses. However, brokerage commissions and other transaction costs are subtracted from the results of all traders, making foreign exchange a negative-sum game. Becareful before applying on an Forex trading Platform . Dont try this Forex Trading with amount of money you cant afford to lose because you will lose your money Most Forex sites are scams . i was lucky to recover my lost funds using Hacking Clubs Scam rescue team . Hacking Clubs Scam Rescue Team is Very much effective and promising company I've ever seen.Hacking Clubs Scam Rescue and team guided me through the way of my fund recovery very easily. The staff is so friendly and you can get in touch with them any time for your any doubts and queries. I had a successful and profitable experience with them. [email protected]
From Wikipedia: "Confessions of an Economic Hit Man is a partly autobiographical book written by John Perkins) published in 2004. It provides Perkins' account of his career with engineering consulting firm Chas. T. Main in Boston. According to Perkins, his job at Main was to convince leaders of underdeveloped countries to accept substantial development loans for large construction and engineering projects that would primarily help the richest families and local elites, rather than the poor, while making sure that these projects were contracted to U.S. companies. Later these loans would give the U.S. political influence and access to natural resources for U.S. companies. He characterizes his role as being an 'economic hit man.'" https://www.amazon.com/Confessions-Economic-Hit-John-Perkins/dp/0452287081 This is an excellent introduction to the basics of how the current system is a contrived scam to control countries and their resources. This scam is so good, it allowed the U.S. to accumulate great power and wealth. The Chinese are emulating this pattern as well. I will try to write more on this in the future to tie more things together, but this is a good primer on how economic interactions between countries are just another form of warfare which exist in prelude to actual, kinetic war. It ties together with the Petrodollarscheme and Brzezinski's Grand Chessboard theory. Buy Perkin's book and read it if you haven't.
ELI5: Does anyone here know what drop shipping is, or how it works?
Recently came across this term, and that it was some kind of online scam (?) or something, similar to forex trading (?). Couldn't get through enough of the Wiki to understand wtf was going on. Was hoping someone could explain
Starting a workgroup to tackle shady MLMs and "scam" courses
Hi all Besiege here. After seeing a couple of reddit posts on shady MLM, pyramid schemes and "scam" courses, I was wondering if any of the sg redditors here would be interested to start a workgroup to better address these issues (it can be online!). There has been a sizable movement by the government to catch outright scams ( https://www.scamalert.sg/ ), but the same cannot be said for shady MLMs/"scam" courses. If there is one which I am not aware of, let me know and I will delete this post. Personally, I feel indignant whenever I hear of individuals/groups taking advantage of vulnerable populations in order to make a quick buck off them. Worse, I shudder when I hear these scummy people justify their actions by arguing they are providing opportunities for others to become a better version of themselves. Just a few quick points to get terminologies out of the way:
Multilevel/Network Marketing companies are not illegal. In fact, I think using personal networks to sell products is a perfectly legitimate marketing strategy. The company is illegal if the payment structure for the distributors is like a pyramid. The basic idea of a pyramid scheme is that money is made primarily through recruiting more people to market/distribute the products, where there is often an upfront payment fee to join as a distributor. This joining fee then goes up the pyramid to pay whoever suckered the recruit in and then to whoever suckered the recruiter in, all the way to the top of the pyramid.
However, some pyramid companies have been really good at disguising as legal MLM companies. Take Herbalife for example, one of the world's most successful MLM companies, with a presence in Singapore as well. It was found by the US Federal Trade Commission to be complicit in unfair practices (having pyramid-like features) and was fined 200 million dollars.
By "scam" courses, I refer to courses where people are sold false promises of earning some $$$$ by learning some secret tips/skills, but instead, find themselves paying more and more to unlock knowledge that ends up going nowhere. Such "scam" courses over promise, under deliver. They can take many forms: be it internet marketing, platform-based selling, property investment, forex trading, wealth generation, etc. I use "scam" for a lack of a better word, since I believe they are mostly operating within legal limits. But just because it is legal, doesn't mean it is good!
The main point of "scam" courses is not to teach and get you up and running (it would be great advertising for them if you somehow managed to do it), but to tease you enough to sign up for level 2, level 3... Or in some cases paying a premium for special extras, such as 1 to 1 coaching, this special chat group where you get more advanced knowledge. Maybe even get a cut for referring others to join future courses. This can get insidious because some of the courses actually teach you a few tricks (although they are very basic), and the feel-good from learning can make it feel like it is worth the cost.
Some ideas right off the top of my head:
Maintaining a list of potentially shady companies/courses/individuals to avoid (on a website/gdoc/ singapore wiki page)
Creating a checklist for people to suss out shady schemes (e.g. no mention of the company's name, constant avoidance of business model, no mention of the product being sold, some mentor figure who changed lives)
Written articles to detail modus operandi of various pyramid/"scam" course schemes (e.g. like the rice media article on ICS)
Have an open channel for people to talk about any potential illegal MLM experiences; We will listen and ask guiding questions to suss out if the experience was indeed MLM (by notafairylight)
If you are interested to join this workgroup or have better ideas, do pm me or post it in the comments. I am looking at maybe 5-6 people for a start, who are willing to carve out some of their personal time for this initiative. Also, if you have knowledge and skills you think which can be useful for this initiative, do sound out! E.g. writing, legal, content creation, intimate knowledge of various pyramid schemes, programming, etc. I am currently working as a data-analyst btw!
EDIT: Thanks for the awesome response guys! I will create a separate chat group for all those who have indicated interest to help; I will send u the chat group link via PM by tomorrow. It would be great if someone could think of a catchy group name.
EDIT2: Hi, I have sent out the group links. If I missed out anyone, please sound out via pm!
How to get started in Forex - A comprehensive guide for newbies
Almost every day people come to this subreddit asking the same basic questions over and over again. I've put this guide together to point you in the right direction and help you get started on your forex journey. A quick background on me before you ask: My name is Bob, I'm based out of western Canada. I started my forex journey back in January 2018 and am still learning. However I am trading live, not on demo accounts. I also code my own EA's. I not certified, licensed, insured, or even remotely qualified as a professional in the finance industry. Nothing I say constitutes financial advice. Take what I'm saying with a grain of salt, but everything I've outlined below is a synopsis of some tough lessons I've learned over the last year of being in this business. LET'S GET SOME UNPLEASANTNESS OUT OF THE WAY I'm going to call you stupid. I'm also going to call you dumb. I'm going to call you many other things. I do this because odds are, you are stupid, foolish,and just asking to have your money taken away. Welcome to the 95% of retail traders. Perhaps uneducated or uninformed are better phrases, but I've never been a big proponent of being politically correct. Want to get out of the 95% and join the 5% of us who actually make money doing this? Put your grown up pants on, buck up, and don't give me any of this pc "This is hurting my feelings so I'm not going to listen to you" bullshit that the world has been moving towards. Let's rip the bandage off quickly on this point - the world does not give a fuck about you. At one point maybe it did, it was this amazing vision nicknamed the American Dream. It died an agonizing, horrible death at the hand of capitalists and entrepreneurs. The world today revolves around money. Your money, my money, everybody's money. People want to take your money to add it to theirs. They don't give a fuck if it forces you out on the street and your family has to live in cardboard box. The world just stopped caring in general. It sucks, but it's the way the world works now. Welcome to the new world order. It's called Capitalism. And here comes the next hard truth that you will need to accept - Forex is a cruel bitch of a mistress. She will hurt you. She will torment you. She will give you nightmares. She will keep you awake at night. And then she will tease you with a glimmer of hope to lure you into a false sense of security before she then guts you like a fish and shows you what your insides look like. This statement applies to all trading markets - they are cruel, ruthless, and not for the weak minded. The sooner you accept these truths, the sooner you will become profitable. Don't accept it? That's fine. Don't bother reading any further. If I've offended you I don't give a fuck. You can run back home and hide under your bed. The world doesn't care and neither do I. For what it's worth - I am not normally an major condescending asshole like the above paragraphs would suggest. In fact, if you look through my posts on this subreddit you will see I am actually quite helpful most of the time to many people who come here. But I need you to really understand that Forex is not for most people. It will make you cry. And if the markets themselves don't do it, the people in the markets will. LESSON 1 - LEARN THE BASICS Save yourself and everybody here a bunch of time - learn the basics of forex. You can learn the basics for free - BabyPips has one of the best free courses online which explains what exactly forex is, how it works, different strategies and methods of how to approach trading, and many other amazing topics. You can access the BabyPips course by clicking this link: https://www.babypips.com/learn/forex Do EVERY course in the School of Pipsology. It's free, it's comprehensive, and it will save you from a lot of trouble. It also has the added benefit of preventing you from looking foolish and uneducated when you come here asking for help if you already know this stuff. If you still have questions about how forex works, please see the FREE RESOURCES links on the /Forex FAQ which can be found here: https://www.reddit.com/Forex/wiki/index Quiz Time Answer these questions truthfully to yourself: -What is the difference between a market order, a stop order, and a limit order? -How do you draw a support/resistance line? (Demonstrate it to yourself) -What is the difference between MACD, RSI, and Stochastic indicators? -What is fundamental analysis and how does it differ from technical analysis and price action trading? -True or False: It's better to have a broker who gives you 500:1 margin instead of 50:1 margin. Be able to justify your reasoning. If you don't know to answer to any of these questions, then you aren't ready to move on. Go back to the School of Pipsology linked above and do it all again. If you can answer these questions without having to refer to any kind of reference then congratulations, you are ready to move past being a forex newbie and are ready to dive into the wonderful world of currency trading! Move onto Lesson 2 below. LESSON 2 - RANDOM STRANGERS ARE NOT GOING TO HELP YOU GET RICH IN FOREX This may come as a bit of a shock to you, but that random stranger on instagram who is posting about how he is killing it on forex is not trying to insprire you to greatness. He's also not trying to help you. He's also not trying to teach you how to attain financial freedom. 99.99999% of people posting about wanting to help you become rich in forex are LYING TO YOU. Why would such nice, polite people do such a thing? Because THEY ARE TRYING TO PROFIT FROM YOUR STUPIDITY. Plain and simple. Here's just a few ways these "experts" and "gurus" profit from you:
Referral Links - If they require you to click a specific link to signup for something, it means they are an affiliate. They get a commission from whatever the third party is that they are sending you to. I don't care if it's a brokerage, training program, hell even an Amazon link to a book - if they insist you have to click their super exclusive, can't-get-this-deal-any-other-way-but-clicking-my-link type bullshit, it's an affiliate link. There is nothing inherently wrong with affiliate programs, but you are literally generating money for some stranger because they convinced you to buy something. Some brokers such as ICMarkets have affiliate programs that payout a percentage of the commission you generate - this is a really clever system - whether you profit or blow your entire account, the person who referred you to the broker makes a profit off you. Clever eh?
Signal Services, Education & Training Programs, Courses - If somebody is telling you they are making a killing with a signal service and are trying to convince you to join it, I guarantee they are getting a piece of your monthly fee. And better still, these signal services often work...for about a week. Just long enough to suck a bunch of poor fools into it. You see people making money, you want in so you agree to pay the $200+/month subscription fee. You follow the signals and it looks like it's making money for a few days or weeks. Then it turns sideways, you start losing money hand over fist. Pretty soon you have lost most of your trading account because you blindly followed a signal service. And better still - when you go screaming at the person running the signal service they will be very quick to point you to their No Refunds policy. To add insult to injury, the buttfucker that referred you to the signal service in the past will likely listen to you getting mad, and then come back with something like "Sorry it didn't work out, but I just joined this other amazing service and it's working great, you should come join it to earn your money back. Here's my link..." You get the point here right?
Multi-Level Marketing (MLMs) - These people are scum. They are going to offer you training and education, signals, access to forex experts and gurus, and all kinds of other shit with the promise that you will live the dream and become financially free. They are also loading you into a pyrmaid scheme where you will be hounded to recruit other people and make money off them just like you got roped into it. A really prime example here is iMarkets Live (or IML for short). Don't touch this shit with a 10 foot pole. I don't care what they are claiming, you will lose everything using them.
Fund Managers - These people make my skin crawl. It's a classic scam and it works like this - somebody will post online about how much money they are making trading forex/commodities/stocks/whatever. Most of the time they won't explicitly post they are offering a trading service, rather they just put the message out there and wait for the ignorant masses (that's you) to contact them. They will charm you. They will lie to you. They will promise you the moon if you simply wire them some money or give them API access to your trading account. Care to guess what happens next? If you send a wire transfer (or Western Union...hell any kind of payment to them) they will vanish. Happens usually after they take a bunch of suckers for the ride. You sent them $2,000 and so do 9 other suckers. They just made $20,000 and are gone. With API access to your account, you will find your account gets blown super fast or worse - possibly leaving you open to persecution by the broker you are using.
These are just a few examples. The reality is that very few people make it big in forex or any kind of trading. If somebody is trying to sell you the dream, they are essentially a magician - making you look the other way while they snatch your wallet and clean you out. Additionally, on the topic of fund managers - legitimate fund managers will be certified, licensed, and insured. Ask them for proof of those 3 things. What they typically look like are:
Certified - This varies from country to country, in the US it's FINRA (http://www.finra.org). They need to have their Series 7 certification minimum. You can make the case that other FINRA certifications are acceptable in lieu of Series 7, but the 7 is the gold standard.
Licensed - They need to have a valid business license issued by the government. It must clearly state they are an investment company, preferrably a hedge fund because they have some super strict requirements to operate (and often require $25,000+ in fees just to get their business license, so you know they at least have some skin in the game).
Insured - They need to be backed by an insurance company. I'm not talking general insurance for shit like their office burning down. I'm talking about a government-implemented protection insurance program - in the US I believe that is issued by the Securities Investment Protection Corporation (https://www.sipc.org/).
If you are talking to a fund manager and they are insisting they have all of these, get a copy of their verification documents and lookup their licenses on the directories of the issuers to verify they are valid. If they are, then at least you are talking to somebody who seems to have their shit together and is doing investment management and trading as a professional and you are at least partially protected when the shit hits the fan. LESSON 3 - UNDERSTAND YOUR RISK Many people jump into Forex, drop $2000 into a broker account and start trading 1 lot orders because they signed up with a broker thinking they will get rich because they were given 500:1 margin and can risk it all on each trade. Worst-case scenario you lose your account, best case scenario you become a millionaire very quickly. Seems like a pretty good gamble right? You are dead wrong. As a new trader, you should never risk more than 1% of your account balance on a trade. If you have some experience and are confident and doing well, then it's perfectly natural to risk 2-3% of your account per trade. Anybody who risks more than 4-5% of their account on a single trade deserves to blow their account. At that point you aren't trading, you are gambling. Don't pretend you are a trader when really you are just putting everything on red and hoping the roulette ball lands in the right spot. It's stupid and reckless and going to screw you very quickly. Let's do some math here: You put $2,000 into your trading account. Risking 1% means you are willing to lose $20 per trade. That means you are going to be trading micro lots, or 0.01 lots most likely ($0.10/pip). At that level you can have a trade stop loss at -200 pips and only lose $20. It's the best starting point for anybody. Additionally, if you SL 20 trades in a row you are only down $200 (or 10% of your account) which isn't that difficult to recover from. Risking 3% means you are willing to lose $60 per trade. You could do mini lots at this point, which is 0.1 lots (or $1/pip). Let's say you SL on 20 trades in a row. You've just lost $1,200 or 60% of your account. Even veteran traders will go through periods of repeat SL'ing, you are not a special snowflake and are not immune to periods of major drawdown. Risking 5% means you are willing to lose $100 per trade. SL 20 trades in a row, your account is blown. As Red Foreman would call it - Good job dumbass. Never risk more than 1% of your account on any trade until you can show that you are either consistently breaking even or making a profit. By consistently, I mean 200 trades minimum. You do 200 trades over a period of time and either break-even or make a profit, then you should be alright to increase your risk. Unfortunately, this is where many retail traders get greedy and blow it. They will do 10 trades and hit their profit target on 9 of them. They will start seeing huge piles of money in their future and get greedy. They will start taking more risk on their trades than their account can handle. 200 trades of break-even or profitable performance risking 1% per trade. Don't even think about increasing your risk tolerance until you do it. When you get to this point, increase you risk to 2%. Do 1,000 trades at this level and show break-even or profit. If you blow your account, go back down to 1% until you can figure out what the hell you did differently or wrong, fix your strategy, and try again. Once you clear 1,000 trades at 2%, it's really up to you if you want to increase your risk. I don't recommend it. Even 2% is bordering on gambling to be honest. LESSON 4 - THE 500 PIP DRAWDOWN RULE This is a rule I created for myself and it's a great way to help protect your account from blowing. Sometimes the market goes insane. Like really insane. Insane to the point that your broker can't keep up and they can't hold your orders to the SL and TP levels you specified. They will try, but during a flash crash like we had at the start of January 2019 the rules can sometimes go flying out the window on account of the trading servers being unable to keep up with all the shit that's hitting the fan. Because of this I live by a rule I call the 500 Pip Drawdown Rule and it's really quite simple - Have enough funds in your account to cover a 500 pip drawdown on your largest open trade. I don't care if you set a SL of -50 pips. During a flash crash that shit sometimes just breaks. So let's use an example - you open a 0.1 lot short order on USDCAD and set the SL to 50 pips (so you'd only lose $50 if you hit stoploss). An hour later Trump makes some absurd announcement which causes a massive fundamental event on the market. A flash crash happens and over the course of the next few minutes USDCAD spikes up 500 pips, your broker is struggling to keep shit under control and your order slips through the cracks. By the time your broker is able to clear the backlog of orders and activity, your order closes out at 500 pips in the red. You just lost $500 when you intended initially to only risk $50. It gets kinda scary if you are dealing with whole lot orders. A single order with a 500 pip drawdown is $5,000 gone in an instant. That will decimate many trader accounts. Remember my statements above about Forex being a cruel bitch of a mistress? I wasn't kidding. Granted - the above scenario is very rare to actually happen. But glitches to happen from time to time. Broker servers go offline. Weird shit happens which sets off a fundamental shift. Lots of stuff can break your account very quickly if you aren't using proper risk management. LESSON 5 - UNDERSTAND DIFFERENT TRADING METHODOLOGIES Generally speaking, there are 3 trading methodologies that traders employ. It's important to figure out what method you intend to use before asking for help. Each has their pros and cons, and you can combine them in a somewhat hybrid methodology but that introduces challenges as well. In a nutshell:
Price Action Trading (Sometimes called Naked Trading) is very effective at identifying when trends will start and finish. This gives you the advantage of staying ahead of the market and predicting when a change in trend direction will occur. It has the disadvantage of being really easy to screw it up if you don't plot your support and resistance lines properly and interpret the chart wrong. Because you can identify a change in trend direction, you'll generally make more profit on a new trend than a technical strategy will.
Technical Analytics (or TA) uses math and statistics to try and identify where the market is headed or confirm/reject whether a trend is happening. It has the advantage of being very math and stat driven which is hard to refute the numbers, but it has the disadvantage of being late to the party when it comes to identifying trends (hence why people call TA a lagging strategy). When people fail using TA, it's not because of the math - it's because you misinterpreted what the math is telling you.
Fundamental Analysis (or FA) uses news and macro scale events to predict what is going on. A really good example right now is Brexit, what a clusterfuck that is. Every time some major brexit news breaks it causes all sorts of choas in almost every currency pair. Fundamental trading has the highest potential profitability per trade but it also has the highest potential drawdown per trade.
Now you may be thinking that you want to be a a price action trader - you should still learn the principles and concepts behind TA and FA. Same if you are planning to be a technical trader - you should learn about price action and fundamental analysis. More knowledge is better, always. With regards to technical analysis, you need to really understand what the different indicators are tell you. It's very easy to misinterpret what an indicator is telling you, which causes you to make a bad trade and lose money. It's also important to understand that every indicator can be tuned to your personal preferences. You might find, for example, that using Bollinger Bands with the normal 20 period SMA close, 2 standard deviation is not effective for how you look at the chart, but changing that to say a 20 period EMA average price, 1 standard deviation bollinger band indicator could give you significantly more insight. LESSON 6 - TIMEFRAMES MATTER Understanding the differences in which timeframes you trade on will make or break your chosen strategy. Some strategies work really well on Daily timeframes (i.e. Ichimoku) but they fall flat on their face if you use them on 1H timeframes, for example. There is no right or wrong answer on what timeframe is best to trade on. Generally speaking however, there are 2 things to consider:
Speed - If you are scalping (trading on the really fast candles like 1M, 5M, 15M, etc) odds are your trades are very short lived. Maybe 10 minutes to an hour tops. For the most part, scalping strategies will produce little profit per trade but make up for it in the sheer volume of trades. Whereas swing trading may only make a few trades but each one could be worth a significant amount of money.
Spread (the fee you pay to the broker when you trade) - If you are a scalper, the spread is your worst enemy because you have to overcome it very fast to make a profit on your order. Whereas swing trading the spread hardly impacts you at all.
If you are a total newbie to forex, I suggest you don't trade on anything shorter than the 1H timeframe when you are first learning. Trading on higher timeframes tends to be much more forgiving and profitable per trade. Scalping is a delicate art and requires finesse and can be very challenging when you are first starting out. LESSON 7 - AUTOBOTS...ROLL OUT! Yeah...I'm a geek and grew up with the Transformers franchise decades before Michael Bay came along. Deal with it. Forex bots are called EA's (Expert Advisors). They can be wonderous and devastating at the same time. /Forex is not really the best place to get help with them. That is what /algotrading is useful for. However some of us that lurk on /Forex code EA's and will try to assist when we can. Anybody can learn to code an EA. But just like how 95% of retail traders fail, I would estimate the same is true for forex bots. Either the strategy doesn't work, the code is buggy, or many other reasons can cause EA's to fail. Because EA's can often times run up hundreds of orders in a very quick period of time, it's critical that you test them repeatedly before letting them lose on a live trading account so they don't blow your account to pieces. You have been warned. If you want to learn how to code an EA, I suggest you start with MQL. It's a programming language which can be directly interpretted by Meta Trader. The Meta Trader terminal client even gives you a built in IDE for coding EA's in MQL. The downside is it can be buggy and glitchy and caused many frustrating hours of work to figure out what is wrong. If you don't want to learn MQL, you can code an EA up in just about any programming language. Python is really popular for forex bots for some reason. But that doesn't mean you couldn't do it in something like C++ or Java or hell even something more unusual like JQuery if you really wanted. I'm not going to get into the finer details of how to code EA's, there are some amazing guides out there. Just be careful with them. They can be your best friend and at the same time also your worst enemy when it comes to forex. One final note on EA's - don't buy them. Ever. Let me put this into perspective - I create an EA which is literally producing money for me automatically 24/5. If it really is a good EA which is profitable, there is no way in hell I'm selling it. I'm keeping it to myself to make a fortune off of. EA's that are for sale will not work, will blow your account, and the developer who coded it will tell you that's too darn bad but no refunds. Don't ever buy an EA from anybody. LESSON 8 - BRING ON THE HATERS You are going to find that this subreddit is frequented by trolls. Some of them will get really nasty. Some of them will threaten you. Some of them will just make you miserable. It's the price you pay for admission to the /Forex club. If you can't handle it, then I suggest you don't post here. Find a more newbie-friendly site. It sucks, but it's reality. We often refer to trolls on this subreddit as shitcunts. That's your word of the day. Learn it, love it. Shitcunts. YOU MADE IT, WELCOME TO FOREX! If you've made it through all of the above and aren't cringing or getting scared, then welcome aboard the forex train! You will fit in nicely here. Ask your questions and the non-shitcunts of our little corner of reddit will try to help you. Assuming this post doesn't get nuked and I don't get banned for it, I'll add more lessons to this post over time. Lessons I intend to add in the future:
Why you will blow your first account and what to do when it happens
Trading Psychology (this will be a beefy one and will take a while to put together)
Exotics vs Majors and which you should focus on as a newbie (aka how to blow your account in a single trade with exotics)
I was going through old emails today and came across this one I sent out to family on January 4, 2018. It was a reflection on the 2017 crypto bull market and where I saw it heading, as well as some general advice on crypto, investment, and being safe about how you handle yourself in cryptoland. I feel that we are on the cusp of a new bull market right now, so I thought that I would put this out for at least a few people to see *before* the next bull run, not after. While the details have changed, I don't see a thing in this email that I fundamentally wouldn't say again, although I'd also probably insist that people get a Yubikey and use that for all 2FA where it is supported. Happy reading, and sorry for some of the formatting weirdness -- I cleaned it up pretty well from the original email formatting, but I love lists and indents and Reddit has limitations... :-/ Also, don't laught at my token picks from January 2018! It was a long time ago and (luckliy) I took my own advice about moving a bunch into USD shortly after I sent this. I didn't hit the top, and I came back in too early in the summer of 2018, but I got lucky in many respects. ----------------------------------------------------------------------- Jan-4, 2018 Hey all! I woke up this morning to ETH at a solid $1000 and decided to put some thoughts together on what I think crypto has done and what I think it will do. *******, if you could share this to your kids I’d appreciate it -- I don’t have e-mail addresses, and it’s a bit unwieldy for FB Messenger… Hopefully they’ll at least find it thought-provoking. If not, they can use it as further evidence that I’m a nutjob. 😉 Some history before I head into the future. I first mined some BTC in 2011 or 2012 (Can’t remember exactly, but it was around the Christmas holidays when I started because I had time off from work to get it set up and running.) I kept it up through the start of summer in 2012, but stopped because it made my PC run hot and as it was no longer winter, ********** didn’t appreciate the sound of the fans blowing that hot air into the room any more. I’ve always said that the first BTC I mined was at $1, but looking back at it now, that’s not true – It was around $2. Here’s a link to BTC price history. In the summer of 2013 I got a new PC and moved my programs and files over before scrapping the old one. I hadn’t touched my BTC mining folder for a year then, and I didn’t even think about salvaging those wallet files. They are now gone forever, including the 9-10BTC that were in them. While I can intellectually justify the loss, it was sloppy and underlines a key thing about cryptocurrency that I believe will limit its widespread adoption by the general public until it is addressed and solved: In cryptoland, you are your own bank, and if you lose your password or account number, there is no person or organization that can help you reset it so that you can get access back. Your money is gone forever. On April 12, 2014 I bought my first BTC through Coinbase. BTC had spiked to $1000 and been in the news, at least in Japan. This made me remember my old wallet and freak out for a couple of months trying to find it and reclaim the coins. I then FOMO’d (Fear Of Missing Out”) and bought $100 worth of BTC. I was actually very lucky in my timing and bought at around $430. Even so, except for a brief 50% swing up almost immediately afterwards that made me check prices 5 times a day, BTC fell below my purchase price by the end of September and I didn’t get back to even until the end of 2015. In May 2015 I bought my first ETH at around $1. I sent some guy on bitcointalk ~$100 worth of BTC and he sent me 100 ETH – all on trust because the amounts were small and this was a small group of people. BTC was down in the $250 range at that point, so I had lost 30-40% of my initial investment. This was of the $100 invested, so not that much in real terms, but huge in percentages. It also meant that I had to buy another $100 of BTC on Coinbase to send to this guy. A few months after I purchased my ETH, BTC had doubled and ETH had gone down to $0.50, halving the value of my ETH holdings. I was even on the first BTC purchase finally, but was now down 50% on the ETH I had bought. The good news was that this made me start to look at things more seriously. Where I had skimmed white papers and gotten a superficial understanding of the technology before FOMO’ing, I started to act as an investor, not a speculator. Let me define how I see those two different types of activity:
Investors buy because the price is less than the value they see in the investment. Speculators buy because they think that someone will pay more in the future than they are paying now.
Investors trade on information (The white paper was really well-written, had a clear technical advantage over other alternatives, and addresses a need that I can understand and value.) Speculators trade on sentiment. (Buy the rumor! Sell the news!)
Investors usually look at the investment and themselves and can describe why they purchase in those terms (ABC-Coin provides (service) that isn’t addressed yet and matches (requirements) for an investment.) Speculators usually describe why they bought something in terms of how other people think (I think that other people think that the price will rise, so I want to get ahead of that.)
Investors don’t necessarily check the price every day. The can, and very often I do, but it isn’t required because fundamentals don’t often change on a dime. Speculators need to be glued to a price feed, because sentiment very often changes on a dime.
Investors like ideas, people, business plans, and market opportunities. Good ones are like Spock. Speculators like trends. They are tribal.
Investors have a longer time horizon than speculators. In cryptoland, the notion of a “longer” time horizon is still laughably small (months) compared to traditional markets, but it certainly isn’t weeks or days or hours, which is whre speculators often live.
So what has been my experience as an investor? After sitting out the rest of 2015 because I needed to understand the market better, I bought into ETH quite heavily, with my initial big purchases being in March-April of 2016. Those purchases were in the $11-$14 range. ETH, of course, dropped immediately to under $10, then came back and bounced around my purchase range for a while until December of 2016, when I purchased a lot more at around $8. I also purchased my first ICO in August of 2016, HEAT. I bought 25ETH worth. Those tokens are now worth about half of their ICO price, so about 12.5ETH or $12500 instead of the $25000 they would be worth if I had just kept ETH. There are some other things with HEAT that mean I’ve done quite a bit better than those numbers would suggest, but the fact is that the single best thing I could have done is to hold ETH and not spend the effort/time/cost of working with HEAT. That holds true for about every top-25 token on the market when compared to ETH. It certainly holds true for the many, many tokens I tried to trade in Q1-Q2 of 2017. In almost every single case I would have done better and slept better had I just held ETH instead of trying to be smarter than Mr. Market. But, I made money on all of them except one because the crypto market went up more in USD terms than any individual coin went down in ETH or BTC terms. This underlines something that I read somewhere and that I take to heart: A rising market makes everyone seem like a genius. A monkey throwing darts at a list of the top 100 cryptocurrencies last year would have doubled his money. Here’s a chart from September that shows 2017 year-to-date returns for the top 10 cryptocurrencies, and all of them went up a *lot* more between then and December. A monkey throwing darts at this list there would have quintupled his money. When evaluating performance, then, you have to beat the monkey, and preferably you should try to beat a Wall Street monkey. I couldn’t, so I stopped trying around July 2017. My benchmark was the BLX, a DAA (Digital Asset Array – think fund like a Fidelity fund) created by ICONOMI. I wasn’t even close to beating the BLX returns, so I did several things.
I went from holding about 25 different tokens to holding 10 now. More on that in a bit.
I used those funds to buy ETH and BLX. ETH has done crazy-good since then and BLX has beaten BTC handily, although it hasn’t done as well as ETH.
I used some of those funds to set up an arbitrage operation.
The arbitrage operation is why I kept the 11 tokens that I have now. All but a couple are used in an ETH/token pair for arbitrage, and each one of them except for one special case is part of BLX. Why did I do that? I did that because ICONOMI did a better job of picking long-term holds than I did, and in arbitrage the only speculative thing you must do is pick the pairs to trade. My pairs are (No particular order):
I also hold PLU, PLBT, and ART. These two are multi-year holds for me. I have not purchased BTC once since my initial $200, except for a few cases where BTC was the only way to go to/from an altcoin that didn’t trade against ETH yet. Right now I hold about the same 0.3BTC that I held after my first $100 purchase, so I don’t really count it. Looking forward to this year, I am positioning myself as follows:
ETH will still be my core holding. It is the “deepest in the stack” crypto investment that I have. “Deep in the stack” is a programming term that gets at the idea that most software is built on other software. If you just think about your notebook, you have your OS, and programs run on that. But even inside the OS there is a stack. The bottom of your stack is the kernel, and on top of that are the drivers, protocols, and other layers that allow the programs to talk to the OS, the hard drive, the screen, the mouse, your printer, etc. You can change your mouse or printer easily. Changing things deeper in the stack becomes harder and harder. ETH is deep in the crypto stack, so is very hard to dislodge – Around 60 of the top 100 cryptocurrencies by market cap run on top of Ethereum, so getting rid of Ethereum is something that would take a long time to do.
DNT, QTUM, ZRX, and OMG are all, to varying degrees, “deep in the stack” tokens that, once established, will be very hard to dislodge.
That said, I am peeling away some of my holdings into USD right now, because big changes are afoot and they are going to cause market disruptions. I’m going to come right out and admit that this is speculative, but I’m also going to back it up with some non-speculative facts.
The SEC has been sending out hundreds of subpoenas to cryptocurrency organizations over the past 3-4 months. These subpoenas are simply asking for information and nobody has been charged with any crimes or misdoings, but it is clear that the SEC is getting together information so that they can begin to regulate cryptoland. When that happens, other countries will follow, and that means:
Some tokens will be deemed outright scams and people will be prosecuted.
Some tokens will be deemed securities and will be regulated.
Some tokens will not be deemed scams or securities and will continue as they have.
Looking at this, it is clear to me that the tokens that escape prosecution and regulation should do better, but the short-term impact will be brutal and ugly. It would not surprise me at all to see a 50% drop in overall market cap within Q1-Q2, with Q1 being more likely.
Cryptoland has always been a bit nuts, but it is more nuts now than I have ever seen it. Back in 2011-2014 it was a freaks-n-geeks show where people were all about the technology and I would sit around for a 3-day weekend installing a *nix VM on my Windows machine so that I could compile the most recent source and run a CUDA SHA-256 routine rather than thrash my CPU. If that doesn’t make sense to you, you wouldn’t have even thought about being involved.
Now, people see Bitcoin advertisements in their Facebook feed and think “I gotta get on the BTC train!” before going to Coinbase and buying some with a credit card. They don’t know anything about crypto, and they are getting eaten alive – It is no coincidence that BTC peaked after the Thanksgiving holidays when people sat around the table and Janice got Uncle Mike and Cousin Bob all excited as she talked about going to Cancun for Christmas because of her crypto winnings. Huge amounts of fiat got transferred from newbies to BTC whales during this period, and once the whales were done, BTC had dropped from $20,000 to $12,000. It’s now back at $15,000, but for people who bought at a higher level, this sucks. As a result many have moved from BTC to ETH, with the single biggest money flow in crypto in December being the BTC à ETH flow. As a result, it’s no coincidence that ETH is at all-time highs now. The thing is, though, that even most people that moved from BTC to ETH really have no idea what they are doing. They are acting on buzzwords and emotion. They are speculators and are going to get crushed.
The stock market is quite high right now, but people are starting to worry that it is too high and that we are going to enter into a period of inflation again. This has caused gold to go up a lot the last quarter and is likely also responsible a bit for the rise in cryptos. If this view is correct, then cryptos stay stronger than if that pressure wasn’t there. If wrong, then cryptos will swing down as money exits cryptoland for more traditional markets.
I am spending most of my time and money on the arbitrage effort. The nice thing about arbitrage is that it works as the markets go up, and it works as the markets go down. When markets are too volatile, however, arbitrage can get very messy and dangerous, with each trade generating a loss instead of a profit, so I am working right now to tune the algorithms to take into account rate-of-change and add in some circuit breaker triggers. Once this is done I will expand those operations.
I am getting much more serious about systems security.
I have a Nano Ledger and recommend that anyone with >$1000 of crypto have one. The Trezor is also supposed to be good, but I haven’t used it.
I will set up a dedicated *nix notebook that is used for nothing except my crypto work. All it takes is one keylogger to get on your PC/Mac and your crypto is gone. What is on your Nano Ledger will be OK, but they will sweep out your exchange account or Coinbase account faster than you can type. A standard Linux installation with Chrome and nothing else is as about as secure as you can get in the civilian world.
If you don’t use LastPass or a similar password manager yet, you need to do that. Your password to LastPass should be at least 16 characters long and should not have a recognizable English word in it. If you think that “Iluvu4evah” is a secure password, you’re wrong.
Hackers know that “4”=”for” and “u”=”you”. Writing a script to substitute those in is trivial if they want to write the script, but it’s much easier for them to download one of the many, many programs out there that already do this.
If your password contains any string of numbers from anything that can be associated with you at any time in your life, it is insecure. Take those numbers out of the character count because they are an insignificant barrier to cracking your account.
The good news is that you probably won’t be targeted, but if you ever mention online that you are doing anything significant in crypto, that chance increased enormously.
*Never* talk with *anyone* about how much you have in crypto. You’ll notice that I haven’t here. There is no reason to tell even a family member how much you have unless you are sharing a tax form. Sure, you may trust them, but all it takes if for someone to overhead someone else mention at a party that a relative got into crypto a long time ago and made a bunch of money. That person can also then be subjected to the $10 hack and force you to send all your crypto to them.
Your password to LastPass (Or equivalent.) should look something like this -> 6k0jQMoziX&D#4W8
Yes, it’s a headache. Imagine your headache, though, were you to open your account one day and find all of your money gone.
Looking at my notes, I have two other things that I wanted to work into this email that I didn’t get to, so here they are:
Just like with free apps and other software, if you are getting something of value and you didn’t pay anything for it, you need to ask why this is. With apps, the phrase is “If you didn’t pay for the product, you are the product”, and this works for things such as pump groups, tips, and even technical analysis. Here’s how I see it.
Technical analysis (TA) is something that has been argued about for longer than I’ve been alive, but I think that it falls into the same boat. In short, TA argues that there are patterns in trading that can be read and acted upon to signal when one must buy or sell. It has been used forever in the stock and foreign exchange markets, and people use it in crypto as well. Let’s break down these assumptions a bit.
i. First, if crypto were like the stock or forex markets we’d all be happy with 5-7% gains per year rather than easily seeing that in a day. For TA to work the same way in crypto as it does in stocks and foreign exchange, the signals would have to be *much* stronger and faster-reacting than they work in the traditional market, but people use them in exactly the same way. ii. Another area where crypto is very different than the stock and forex markets centers around market efficiency theory. This theory says that markets are efficient and that the price reflects all the available information at any given time. This is why gold in New York is similar in price to gold in London or Shanghai, and why arbitrage margins are easily <0.1% in those markets compared to cryptoland where I can easily get 10x that. Crypto simply has too much speculation and not enough professional traders in it yet to operate as an efficient market. That fundamentally changes the way that the market behaves and should make any TA patterns from traditional markets irrelevant in crypto. iii. There are services, both free and paid that claim to put out signals based on TA for when one should buy and sell. If you think for even a second that they are not front-running (Placing orders ahead of yours to profit.) you and the other people using the service, you’re naïve. iv. Likewise, if you don’t think that there are people that have but together computerized systems to get ahead of people doing manual TA, you’re naïve. The guys that I have programming my arbitrage bots have offered to build me a TA bot and set up a service to sell signals once our position is taken. I said no, but I am sure that they will do it themselves or sell that to someone else. Basically they look at TA as a tip machine where when a certain pattern is seen, people act on that “tip”. They use software to see that “tip” faster and take a position on it so that when slower participants come in they either have to sell lower or buy higher than the TA bot did. Remember, if you are getting a tip for free, you’re the product. In TA I see a system when people are all acting on free preset “tips” and getting played by the more sophisticated market participants. Again, you have to beat that Wall Street monkey.
If you still don’t agree that TA is bogus, think about it this way: If TA was real, Wall Street would have figured it out decades ago and we would have TA funds that would be beating the market. We don’t.
If you still don’t agree that TA is bogus and that its real and well, proven, then you must think that all smart traders use them. Now follow that logic forward and think about what would happen if every smart trader pushing big money followed TA. The signals would only last for a split second and would then be overwhelmed by people acting on them, making them impossible to leverage. This is essentially what the efficient market theory postulates for all information, including TA.
OK, the one last item. Read this weekly newsletter – You can sign up at the bottom. It is free, so they’re selling something, right? 😉 From what I can tell, though, Evan is a straight-up guy who posts links and almost zero editorial comments. Happy 2018.
Trên thực tế như bạn đã biết, khi đem tiền đi đầu tư là sẽ có rủi ro và lợi nhuận càng lớn thì rủi ro đi kèm càng cao. Trong lĩnh vực đầu tư HYIP cũng không phải ngoại lệ, thậm chí bạn có thể mất trắng toàn bộ số tiền đầu tư của mình mà bạn không thể đòi được hay kiện được bất cứ một ai. Trong hầu hết các trường hợp, khi tham gia đầu tư HYIP, bạn sẽ thường nhận được những đảm bảo và lời hứa chắc chắn từ Admin dự án.
Họ dùng tiền của Nhà đầu tư làm gì để sinh lời?
Chủ dự án sẽ quản lý và phân bổ nguồn quỹ của NĐT theo nhiều hướng khác nhau như : trade coin, trade forex (kinh doanh ngoại hối), trade stock (kinh doanh chứng khoán), mở trang trại khai thác coin, đầu tư vào các HYIP khác, kinh doanh nhượng quyền, mua bán trên mạng, mua bán cổ vật,…. và nhiều phương pháp khác để tạo ra lợi nhuận chi trả cho NĐT. Bên cạnh những HYIP dài hạn có sử dụng quỹ NĐT mang đi đầu tư, kinh doanh thực sự thì một số HYIP hoặc cũng có thể nói là đa phần các HYIP ngắn hạn hoạt động dựa trên mô hình Ponzi (kim tự tháp), họ không tạo ra bất kì một hoạt động kinh doanh nào để đem lại lợi nhuận cho NĐT mà chỉ đơn thuần lấy tiền của người sau trả cho người trước, dùng quỹ chi trả cho các hoạt động marketing để mở rộng sự phổ biến của dự án, thu hút người tham gia. Vì vậy, trong đầu tư HYIP yếu tố về mặt thời gian (đầu tư sớm hay muộn) vô cùng quan trọng. Tìm hiểu series dành cho người mới nhập môn đầu tư HYIP
Điểm khác biệt của đầu tư HYIP trực tuyến (online) là gì?
So với đầu tư HYIP offline thì đầu tư HYIP trực tuyến (online) có rất nhiều điểm khác biệt như: + Yêu cầu số tiền đầu tư tối thiểu (min deposit) rất thấp, có thể là khoảng 10 USD hoặc thấp hơn. + Chi trả lợi nhuận rất nhanh cho NĐT theo tuần, theo ngày thậm chí là theo giờ. + Gần như là 99% các chương trình đầu tư HYIP bạn sẽ không nhận được những thông tin thật sự về chủ sở hữu. + Họ luôn hứa sẽ đảm bảo lợi nhuận cho bạn trong mọi thời điểm. + Chỉ chấp nhận dùng các loại tiền điện tử: Perfect Money, Payeer, Advcash, Bitcoin, Ethereum,….
HYIP là gì – Có nên đầu tư?
Câu trả lời phụ thuộc vào ý kiến cá nhân của bạn sau khi tham khảo qua bài viết này và cá nhân bạn có dám chấp nhận mạo hiểm được hay không?
Scam: Dự án không còn trả tiền cho các khoản đầu tư hoặc trả tiền một cách chọn lọc (chỉ trả tiền cho một số người).
Script: Là chương trình của dự án được viết lại dưới các ngôn ngữ lập trình để thực hiện các tác vụ trên giao diện của web. Hầu hết các script của các dự án HYIP hiện nay đều được mua từ các gói lập trình sẵn. Các script nổi tiếng hiện nay là H-Script và Gold Coder Script.
Minimum payment (Minpay): Số tiền tối thiểu được rút ra mỗi lần.
Minimum deposit (Mindep):Số tiền đầu tư tối thiểu.
Cashout, Withdraw: Chức năng bạn dùng để thực hiện lệnh rút tiền.
Instant Withdraw: Xử lí rút tiền tức thì, đặt lệnh rút tiền là sẽ được xử lí ngay tức khắc.
Manual Withdraw: Xử lí rút tiền thủ công, đặt lệnh rút tiền xong cần chờ đợi một khoảng thời gian từ một vài tiếng trở lên thì lệnh mới được xử lí.
Release Deposit: Rút vốn sớm trước kì hạn đầu tư, thông thường sẽ phải chịu một khoảng phí từ -5% số tiền đầu tư trở lên.
Pending: Lệnh rút tiền của bạn bị trì hoãn vô thời hạn, trường hợp pending quá 24h đều là dấu hiệu của các dự án lừa đảo.
HYIP là gì – Có mấy dạng site HYIP?
Ngoài câu hỏi thường gặp “HYIP là gì?” thì câu hỏi về “Có những dạng site HYIP nào” bạn cũng cần phải quan tâm và tìm hiểu thật kỹ nhé. Đây! Theo cá nhân mình phân chia ở thời điểm hiện tại có 4 dạng phổ biến bao gồm: + HYIP dài hạn (Long-term HYIP): Loại này lãi suất thường thấp rơi vào khoảng 1% – 3% hàng ngày bao gồm cả gốc với thời gian kéo dài từ 40 ngày trở lên hoặc lãi từ 0.5%- 2% hàng ngày, hoàn gốc cuối chu kì với thời gian kéo dài từ 20 ngày trở lên. + HYIP trung bình (Medium-term HYIP): Loại này thường đưa ra các mức lợi nhuận dao động từ 40- 60% mỗi tháng, các HYIP kiểu này thường hoạt động theo hình thức kim tự tháp – Pyramid Scheme (mô hình Ponzi) lấy tiền của người sau trả người trước, ai tham gia sớm thì rủi ro càng thấp. Các chương trình này mình nhận thấy thường tồn tại ở mức 3- 4 tháng trở lại. + HYIP ngắn hạn (Short-term HYIP): Cũng hoạt động theo mô hình Ponzi nhưng dạng HYIP này có chu kì ngắn chỉ kéo dài trong khoảng 10 ngày đổ lại với cách trả lãi theo phút, theo giờ, theo ngày hoặc cho phép rút vốn sớm với mức lợi nhuận cực hấp dẫn từ 20% trở lên cho mỗi chu kì và thường tồn tại ở mức 30 ngày trở lại. + HYIP đánh nhanh (Fast HYIP): Chu kì ngắn chỉ kéo dài một vài ngày thậm chí chỉ có vài giờ với lợi nhuận cực kì lớn, dạng này thì có vòng đời khá ngắn thường vào khoảng 10 ngày đổ lại. Ví dụ: 30% mỗi giờ trong 4 giờ, 120% sau 1 ngày,….Đối với dạng HYIP này phía blog không giới thiệu đến NĐT. Chú ý: Thông tin chỉ mang tính chất tham khảo dựa trên kinh nghiệm cá nhân của mình để phân loại.
Các HYIP lừa đảo sẽ như thế nào?
Giao diện thiết kế sơ sài.
Sử dụng host miễn phí hoặc rẻ tiền.
Sử dụng tên miền (domain) miễn phí như: .xyz; .tk;…
Sử dụng các kế hoạch đầu tư lãi cao với thời gian ngắn. Ví dụ: 40% mỗi giờ trong 3 giờ.
Dụ dỗ bằng cách tặng thưởng lớn khi tham gia. Ví dụ: Tặng 25$ miễn phí khi đăng kí tài khoản.
Đối tượng nào không nên tham gia đầu tư HYIP?
Người đi vay mượn, cầm cố để đầu tư. Đây là điều tối kị trong đầu tư HYIP. Tuyệt đối không được vay mượn, cầm cố để tham gia, bởi đầu tư HYIP là một lĩnh vực đầu tư vô cùng mạo hiểm, tiềm ẩn nhiều nguy cơ rủi ro, bạn có thể mất trắng toàn bộ số tiền đầu tư mà không thể đòi lại được từ bất cứ một ai. Hãy chỉ tham gia đầu tư HYIP bằng số tiền nhàn rỗi để trong trường hợp xảy ra rủi ro nếu số tiền này bị mất đi sẽ không ảnh hưởng quá lớn đến cuộc sống của bạn. Thêm nữa, khi bạn đi vay mượn, cầm cố để lấy tiền đầu tư, sẽ dẫn đến bị áp lực về mặt tâm lí khiến bản thân đưa ra các quyết định sai lầm trong việc lựa chọn các dự án đầu tư, nhất là khi bạn bị thua lỗ bạn sẽ cố gắng tìm cách gỡ gạc lại bằng cách đầu tư nhiều hơn ở các dự án sau này để thu hồi lại số tiền bị thua lỗ ban đầu. Thế nhưng, đời không như mơ, một lần nữa, bạn có thể tiếp tục bị thua lỗ và thậm chí là lỗ nặng cháy sạch tài khoản. Chính vì vậy, một lần nữa xin nhấn mạnh lại rằng, hãy chỉ tham gia đầu tư HYIP bằng số tiền nhàn rỗi! Người đầu tư theo phong trào, không hiểu HYIP là gì? Đây chính lực lượng chiếm phần lớn trong thị trường. Họ đến với đầu tư HYIP vì được nghe từ một lời mời quảng cáo hấp dẫn như dễ kiếm tiền, đơn giản, nhân nhanh số vốn trong thời gian ngắn,…Đặc điểm của những người này là không hề có kiến thức về đầu tư tài chính, kiến thức căn bản để đánh giá một site HYIP, không có kế hoạch cụ thể. Và, họ đa phần đều thua lỗ. Người mong muốn làm giàu một cách nhanh chóng. Không có con đường làm giàu nào một cách nhanh chóng, tất cả đều phải có quá trình học hỏi, trau dồi kiến thức, vấp ngã và đúc kết kinh nghiệm để có được thành công. Người quá tham lam không biết điểm dừng. Cổ nhân xưa có câu “Tham thì thâm”, quả không sai tẹo nào, nhất là trong đầu tư HYIP thì nó lại càng thấm. Nếu bạn không kiểm soát được lòng tham thì toàn bộ số tiền lời thậm chí cả số vốn ban đầu tư của bạn cũng sẽ đều “theo gió cuốn đi” bởi Admin dự án có rất nhiều chiêu trò để đánh vào lòng tham của bạn như: mở chế độ lãi kép (compound), tặng thưởng, ra kế hoạch đầu tư hấp dẫn với số tiền lớn,…Hãy đặt ra những nguyên tắc và lên kế hoạch đầu tư cụ thể cho bản thân.
Các site HYIP uy tín đang thanh toán
Những site HYIP đang được giới thiệu trong chuyên mục “Danh sách HYIP” đều là những dự án được phía blog tuyển chọn và sàng lọc hiện đang thanh toán đều đặn cho Nhà đầu tư tham gia. Truy cập theo đường link dưới đây để xem chi tiết.
Như vậy qua bài viết này, blog đã giới thiệu cho bạn hiểu một cách căn bản nhất về HYIP cũng như giúp bạn có một tư duy đúng đắn về đầu tư HYIP và bản chất thực sự của nó. Ở phần sau, mình sẽ hướng dẫn cho bạn chuyên sâu hơn về cách kiểm tra (check) một chương trình đầu tư HYIP căn bản nhất cũng như tìm nguồn, thông tin để có các chương trình đầu tư HYIP mới nhất. Hãy theo dõi và đón đọc nhé! Nếu bạn thấy bài viết “HYIP là gì” của bọn mình có ý nghĩa và đem lại lợi ích cho cộng đừng quên chia sẻ tới bạn bè nhé! Chúc bạn luôn gặt hái được nhiều thành công! Xem nhiều hơn tại: https://hyipcenter4me.com/hyip-la-gi/
Heads up for those who intend to invest in the Stox ICO
Let me begin by saying that despite my ongoing criticism, i appreciate Bancor's protocol for enabling speculative tokens exchange. I don't think Bancor is a scam or a worthless investment However, i think that investors have the right to be informed about projects they are about to invest so i took the time to collect that information. Techcrunch and other articles that mention invest.com as some veteran company raking in gazzilions of dollars and Stox as a fresh, exciting company (Yay journalism propagating press releases) are slightly inaccurate. for both of these cases. Invest.com is a domain that was bought specifically for Stox for a hefty sum of $5M (Yep. not making this up). Stox was once called Stox, then renamed itself to Getstocks (45K monthly visitors) and now set up a "new" company called Stox. In essence, they were a "regular" investment platform that raised $20M (technically Invest.com raised the amount, but Invest.com is basically Stox) from investors (and dealt with fiat, so no need for that new token, obviously) for a social forex investing platform not unlike Etoro, before their current "prediction market" route they've taken. they got into financial problems and had to fire employees because of it and if their annual volume couldn't sustain 30 employees, forget about the $50M in profits. from what i gather, they had around a couple of millions in volume. As for Invest.com. Don't confuse Investing.com and Invest.com. both are Israeli platforms but with a slight difference: Investing.com has 66M visitors a month, for an average of 10 minutes a visit and 50% bounce rate. it is an established trading news platform and a very popular one at that. if it was investing.com which issued the ICO, i'd be all over it. Invest.com has 400K visitors a month, for an average of 48 seconds a visit and a 82% bounce rate. there is no way this is an active platform with the volumes they suggest they have. no fricking way. the numbers simply doesn't add up. So where do those magical numbers come from? Invest.com bought a binary options company called AnyOption.com and retained their databases. Binary options were having a hard time in Israel because many realized they were basically gambling platforms rather than trading ones, despite marketing themselves as the latter. many of these got closed due to legal implications. a typical company like AnyOption used to hire hundreds of sales people that were spending hours aggressively calling all over the world trying to convince people to trade in their platform. they were hard spammers that promised easy entry into stock trading but in practice provided for a high risk, low reward gambling. With the purchase of AnyOption.com, Invest.com supposedly got AnyOption.com's costumer base so they could claim their volume as the former AnyOption volume, however, a quick glance at their website data shows that their lack of activity really hurt them (down to 250K visitors a month). **It is also important to know that AnyOption founders have recieved shares in Invest.com, so investing in Stox is rewarding AnyOption founders as well. So those billions in volume, tens of millions in profit and millions in clients are A. not Invest.com figures, B. outdated and diminished by now. To summarize, i am not saying Stox is a scam, or that Stox doesn't have potential. i just want to stress out that the information you are getting is vastly inaccurate and i believe you are entitled to a more honest overview.
[Forex Broker Exposure] GPAK Has Been Investigated by the Police
As the financial market with the most frequent transactions, the Forex market is favored by global investors due to its high efficiency, liquidity and flexibility. However, many illegal brokers also lurk around on this lucrative market, attracting investors with appealing yet misleading advertisement such as “starting trading with only US$5” and “speedy deposit and withdrawal”, or promising investors so-called “bonus” for successfully inviting others to open account at the platform. But behind the attractive “high profits” claimed by brokers, there are often great risks or even traps. As one of the victims suffering such broker scams, Mr. Wang reported GPAK to WikiFX and shared his experience of being defrauded to warn other investors against the illegal Forex broker. Complainant: Mr. Wang Forex broker: GPAK Broker website: http://www.gpakcn.com/ Time of opening account: February, 2019 Time of withdrawal: June 20th, 2019 Withdrawal status: in process Customer service: no response Website status: inaccessible Event Recap I opened an account on GPAK in February, 2019 under the recommendation of a friend and made 2 deposits through Alipay. From February to June, I managed to make some profits which added up with the initial deposit to US$3,503.62. I once contacted the customer service in April to withdraw, but was advised to wait, as he claimed my request won't be processed during the May Day holiday. On June 20th, I was informed that my application had been approved. But strangely enough, my trading account showed the application remained in process and I still didnt receive the money a week later. When I tried to log in my GPAK account, I found the website was no longer accessible and the customer service didn't reply any more. Case Study First persuade investors to deposit through “acquaintance's recommendation” , and then postpone their withdrawal applications to prepare for escaping, which is an old trick of illegal brokers. In Mr. Wang's case, GPAK first got Mr. Wang to deposit through the marketing strategy of “acquaintance's recommendation” and further lured him into making more investments with attractive profits. When Mr. Wang tried to withdraw, the customer service began to pull up all kinds of excuses such as withdrawal can't be processed during the holiday in order to postpone withdrawal and perhaps win themselves more time for running away. Case Summary As more Forex scams have been exposed, the illegal brokers also become more sophisticated in their tricks. We conclude the following tips based on Mr. Wang's case:
Investors should always check a broker's qualification and stay prudent about the recommendations of others, even from your friends.
Think twice when you seem to be profiting and want to double down your deposit, as no investment comes without risks.
Asset safety should always be your priority. Only deposits made through UnionPay or in escrow are under the regulation of the People's Bank of China, and there's still a chance of getting the money back even if you' re defrauded. However, if the deposit is made through Alipay, WeChat Pay or personal transfer, investors risk suffering great loss.
Conclusion According to the information on WikiFX App, the licenses from FCA(UK) and NFA(US) which GPAK claims to hold are suspected to be cloned, while its AR license from FCA(UK) has been revoked. Currently without valid regulatory status, the broker is rated at only 1.93 on the WikiFX App and bears significant risks, please stay away from it.
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21 years old, newborn to the world of independent adults!
Hello all! I wanted to do a brief introduction and ask some advice. I am 21 years old, still living in my parents house, and with around 500€ saved, because I spent the rest travelling last year. I live in Barcelona, Spain. I recently discovered this whole world about personal finance, financial independence and investments, and I wanna use my (tiny) savings wisely. I've been glancing over the different wikis on these topics, but there's so much info and so many links and new concepts that I just got so overwhelmed. Just asking where should I start? Any book, link, blog, video? I insist I don't know anything about anything, and I'd like to have a broad understanding of the structure of the system we live in, and the strategies that apply. Investing and trading have been catching my eye lately. I've been learning about the forex market (I know, I know there's a full load of scam out there, been studying cautiously), and I'm interested in the other financial markets as well. But now I realize that investing and trading would require way more money saved (or am I wrong?). Anyway, I'm a newborn to the world of independent adults! Any advice will be useful. Thanks and I hope to see you all around from now on.
Worrying ICOs of Spot Option and IQ Option WARNING
Hi I am glad icocrypto exists because as a crypto trader and a big enthusiast I want to do my part to keep this space clean. I have been observing a worrying trend that I wanted to share my opinion on and alert fellow investors and traders on giving real hard facts that could save us all, collectively, a lot of money and emotional pain. There are some major fraudsters, conmen and scam artists that are soon looking to ICO and not 1 dollar of the crypto currency communities money should be given to them ESPECIALLY after the STOX ICO which later was exposed as a scam. Read here for those who missed it: https://www.reddit.com/Bancocomments/6o34fz/heads_up_for_those_who_intend_to_invest_in_the/ Around 9 months ago I lost a friend. He was around my age and also a consultant to one of my fledgeling businesses in the Quebec region. At first I thought it was some hoax or prank but he had mentioned to me about some personal problems he was going through during our working relationship. Little did I know the situation was far darker and serious than he had led on, otherwise I would have helped. I am talking about Fred Turbide who killed himself in his garage leaving behind a sad and bankrupt family. He was lied to and cheated out of his live savings by an Israeli binary options company called 23Traders. You can read the whole story here none of this is made up https://www.timesofisrael.com/fleeced-by-israeli-binary-options-firm-canadian-man-commits-suicide/ Based on my research 23Traders is a brand of Spot Option, an Israeli company that owns 70 percent of the binary option trading market. The founders of this company known as Pini Peter and Oren Shabat and some guy called Semi Vahap, have been indicted for fraud/money laundering and their subsidiary brands like Banc De Binary (one of the biggest binary option scams that was ejected from USA and shut down). You can read about this in their OWN WIKIPEDIA page: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SpotOption For those who were taken in by the STOX ICO scam where they swindled around 30 million dollars from crypto investors, you will never see any return on that share again. STOX as the reddit thread i have posted above proves, is basically the same team of ANY OPTION another SPOT OPTION brokerage. ANY OPTION has scammed thousands of clients, been fined repeatedly and was "bought out" yeah right. They rebranded to invest.com and ICO'd a company that has no real traffic, lying about their figures. Having dabbled in binary options before, I knew it was a fun way to trade where one could make a lot of money but after my broker IQ option (I will talk a little bit more about them later in this post because they are planning to ICO!) decided to lock me out and deny me my wins, that is where i knew I was dealing with a sinister set of people. To my dismay, since I hang out at Forex Peace Army which helps keeps traders like me alert for new scams, I found out that these Isreali binary scam brokers are now looking to ICO so they can pull off a giant scam only this time with THE PUBLIC'S MONEY!. https://www.financemagnates.com/fintech/news/exclusive-spotoption-announces-blockchain-based-trading-via-spotchain/ Spot Option is the first one that is looking to ICO and then I found out today that IQ Option, the company that stole my deposit and regularly stops traders from being awarded their RIGHTFUL gains and wins, is also looking to do an ICO. http://www.financemagnates.com/forex/brokers/iq-option-teases-upcoming-ico-limited-tokens/ Here is the truth about IQ Option: They pay hundreds of people including their employees to write good reviews including affiliates who write fake 5 star reviews. The truth however is very dark you can read it here http://brokerscamalert.com/iq-options-review/ and most importantly, Forex Peace Army which actively hunts down these bucket shops paints a very different reality. You will see in this post that there are hundreds of threads of customer complaints of outright denial of withdrawals, manipulation of price data and even threats issued by this company to clients: http://www.forexpeacearmy.com/community/search/6362854/?q=iqoption&o=relevance Only the problem is you don't find these reviews on page 1 or 2 of google so easily so many people get duped. If you know where to look, you can easily find them and the truth emerges. Before Spot Option and IQ option type of brokers entered binary options actually it was fun and fair and regulated brokers existed but these firms completely destroyed everything by greed and praying upon the hope of the desperate. Do not fuel their intentions or fall prey to their lies. I have so much evidence if any one has questions I will post more. Please DO NOT give these scammers any money, they have already swindled millions from poor people around the world and now want to use the "lack of information" in the crypto currency about what really went on in the binary options space to create scarcity value and try and hype up their scam. Please post here your responses. I am not promoting anything here I just don't want these leeches to steal any more money. -danpirung
Report: Another likely investment seminar scam - James Altucher, Doug Hill, and Choose Yourself Financial
Hilariously, while browsing /antiMLM just after making a post explaining investment schemes, I received this targeted ad: https://imgur.com/a/Q6wng Now, if you've been here long enough you should know how insufferably stupid crypto/forex scams have gotten. This one is bad enough that I had to share. First off, the ad features a picture of James Altucher and a bunch of bitcoin symbols. I originally thought this was a reboot of GatesWay, but got excited when I found out the picture is of a completely different millionaire! Vauge sidebar ads promising wealth are obviously a completely legitimate and reliable business (/s), so I delved deeper. The ad links to a pro.chooseyourself.io, which has the most sparse WHOIS info I've ever seen. It links only to Agora Financial (more on them soon). Choose Yourself Financial appears to have several different websites with similar names, each referencing Altucher, but it was completely unclear if they were actually associated with Altucher, or just using his name. ...but judging by what I can find about Altucher, they probably do. He's looks like someone who was way ahead of the curve in manipulating internet PR. Think Tai Lopez, but not an idiot. His company flooded the web with positive SEO articles anywhere that will take them. Try searching "James Altucher scam" or "James Altucher con artist" and you'll come back with a mountain of pro-Altucher articles where he calls all kinds of legitimate things scams and cons. You might also notice an influx of strangely positive, vapid comments on Reddit and Quora threads where things associated with him are called into question. This is a man who charges $2500/yr for a pamphlet of financial advice and advertises to low-education laymen on the internet. This is a man whose advertising implies massive returns in highly volatile markets and but sells common-sense advice you could get for free. How he's managed to SEO that fact into oblivion is a mystery to me. Searching "James Altucher [anything]" returns google ads with the header "James Altucher - Crypto Millionaire!", which are clearly designed to trick people into pumping currencies for the scammers to dump. The pages are loaded with deliberately misleading language about "investing secrets" and "instant returns", and I can Personally Guarantee™ aren't actually what they sound like. Remember - Con artists build trust by telling the truth when it's cheap and easy. Just because this guy is successful, and gives good basic advice, does not mean he can or will sell you success. Then there's Agora Financial, which is even weirder. Their incredibly offbeat Wikipedia page was written entirely in a single burst in 2013, and hasn't really changed since. It reads mostly like PR (but not as much as Altucher's) but the last section seems to breeze through some kind of antisemitic 9/11 conspiracy theory. Agora seems to be a pretty normal finance publisher, though, so I'm still trying to figure out if they actually have something to do with this or if their name was just spoofed in the WHOIS. The real source of this scheme seems to be a secondary marketing firm, rather than Altucher or Agora, but I can't nail down who it is. Another party, Doug Hill, does most of the writing on James' behalf. Via chooseyourselffinancial.com, chooseyourself.io and altucher.org, Hill has posted all kinds of strange, leading articles promoting crypto as an investment. Crypto is not an investment, it's a hybrid pyramid/ponzi scheme that (like pyramid schemes) can technically pay out, but rarely does. No one should be falling for this crap, yet here we are. In conclusion, nothing about this looks legit, although I can't sort out how it all comes together or which groups are actually involved. Don't trust anything orbiting Altucher, Hill, or Choose Yourself. Hopefully, someone will stumble on this and steer clear. Links:
As an aside, I'd like to use this as an opportunity to address the behavioral similarities between wealth scam victims. This includes MLM, wealth seminar, investing seminar, get-rich-quick, and Ponzi schemes. The victims overwhelmingly praise the scam while involved. They believe their big break is right around the corner, and suggest that those who haven't bought in are "sheeple" in one way or another. There's also the assertion and re-assertion that failure only happens when you don't try/believe hard enough, which exonerates the scammer from losses. The sanitized name for this practice is "attraction marketing", better known as "fake it till you make it". In reality, it's a clear sign that a business is a bucket of crabs trying to drag more victims in. Note the users suspiciously suggesting that it "can't hurt to try" and saying "I felt like it was worth it" or "this is very advanced, so only do it if you're a successful genius like me". Actual investors don't say these things, scam victims do.
Can someone explain to me why iML (imarketlive) is a scam?
Now, I have already seen posts that said iML is a scam. But I guess, I'm in that state of self-deception and I want to believe that it's not. Right now, I have a foot invested in iML that cost me $1 to get access to everything except IBO. It been about 2 weeks now and, as a newbie, everything seems great and legit. Until I saw reddit's posts regarding iML. Since I don't want to be a fool, I'm posting this topic hoping that you guys can convinced my self-deception that this is truly a scam. 1st off, on the first training video, you can hear CEO terry saying that "Results are not typical and past performance doesn't guarantee future results." which immediately made me lower my "bullshit" guard and further believe that this is legit, because it sounds like a real life situation. I tried their autotrader aka fx signal live, (with demo of $5,000 USD) which I find it to be super slow in gain. Withing 2 weeks it went from initial to $5,121. Seems like crap to me, but at least it's bring in profit. So nothing that trigger my "bullshit" radar here since the rate feels realistic to me. Now, the harmonic scanner seems to be working best for me, (again in demo money) I win some and I lose some, but ultimately, I win more than lose, so I was in the profit. Which again, seems realistic to me, since the harmonic scanner is not 100% accuracy. So far, with the demo account and the harmonic scanner, I learn to control myself a bit more when I lose money, and I learn to be patient and learn to study the market (when to enter, exit, etc) based on my experience, I just honestly don't understand how iML can be a scam. But I'm just a new trader, so I'm probably wrong when compared to you guys. Sorry for my ignorance, but I will really appreciate your input on this. For the time being, I will check out https://www.reddit.com/Forex/wiki/index and try to learn more information. P.S. please note that I am not an IBO so I don't have any experience with iML's MLM system. IMO, being an IBO seems like hard work just for $35. So I don't understand why would anyone want to be an IBO.
DEMYSTYFYING CRYPTOCURRENCIES, BLOCKCHAIN & ICO IN SIMPLE ENGLISH – REFLECTIONS AND WAY FORWARD FOR 2018
DISCLAIMER: The authors of this article by no means are advocating, advising or persuading anyone to invest in Cryptocurrencies, ICOs or any other form of investment. Investments are subjected to market risks and you must do your own research before investing and seek financial advise and help from qualified personnel. Any businesses or companies quoted in this article have not paid us financially or through any other means for profit or gain. The authors also do not intent to challenge, disrespect or disobey any specific government, institution or personnel of authority including Banks, Financial regulators, governing bodies and laws of the land. All viewpoints in this article are our own and does not relate to any company, partner, employment or body that we are associated with in our day to day life. THE HEADLINE: As we reflect upon on 2017, it is probably fair to make a bold statement that it has been a phenomenal leap forward for the trio of Blockchain, Cryptocurrency and the ICO. Here is why: • Bitcoin (the most popular cryptocurrency and once defamed as a ‘hyper-coin’) hit another all-time high passing $8000. Today, Bitcoin is worth about $50 billion and has been accepted under the law and tax frameworks of Canada, Australia, and Japan. • Ethereum network (platform) and its own fuel ( coin) Ether has appreciated more than 2,800% since it was launched in 2015. • Underlying Blockchain technology is no more a hype, it is disrupting every industry through its secure public ledger • ICOs have raked in over 3.6 Billion Dollars, the largest ICO in 2017 has been Filecoin raising over 257 Million Dollars. This is the just beginning of the ICO revolution where IPOs and traditional stock exchanges are going to become a thing in the past. Let’s admit it. We either have a tribe of people who love the whole concept of decentralized and autonomous Peer to Peer network completely secure and away from the control of the regulators and bureaucrats OR you still belong to the other tribe, you think Cryptocurrencies are dark alleys and ‘good’ people should stay away lurking in these areas. We respect views on either side and we would like to just attempt to demystify few basic practical concepts here that one should know if you are new to this so called “Crypto Tribe”. EVOLUTION OF CRYPTO AND BITCOIN The first internet currency, known as DigiCash, was created by David Chaum and is said to have its origin from Netherlands. This was arguably the first attempt, but the idea failed and the company went bankrupt in 1998. Keeping up with the trend PayPal ( one of the global leaders in Payments Industry) was next to follow-up and became highly successful, but did not create an actual cryptocurrency. So history was made when the first real cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, was invented by someone went by the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto in 2008 and went online in 2009. There has been several failed attempts to identify this person. This ground breaking and revolutionary makes it possible to take to replace central authorities, government, watchdogs bureaucrats and politicians with the decentralized blockchain, and take power away from Wall Street. Bitcoin has already broken its own records several times since it started. The chart below will obviously blow your mind if you have not tracked Bitcoin recently. In less than 8 years Bitcoin has given over 8000% return. From 0 to 8000 USD per coin. And ofcourse there are talks of the next bubble and market for Bitcoin crashing down anytime. Really? Let’s address them a bit later in this paper. The legacy of crypto goes back to the days of World War II when cryptographic systems were devised to securely transmit messages between various parties. All has happened is the technology and evolution has progressed since with the advancement of Computer systems and underlying hardware and software. We hence now have a very powerful system on the network for anyone to harness. WHAT IS BLOCKCHAIN? A blockchain is a continuously growing list of records, called blocks, which are linked and secured using cryptography. Each block typically contains a hash pointer as a link to a previous block, a timestamp and transaction data. By design, blockchains are inherently resistant to modification of the data. A blockchain can serve as "an open, distributed ledger that can record transactions between two parties efficiently and in a verifiable and permanent way not in citation given. For use as a distributed ledger, a blockchain is typically managed by a peer-to-peer network collectively adhering to a protocol for validating new blocks. Once recorded, the data in any given block cannot be altered retroactively without the alteration of all subsequent blocks, which requires collusion of the network majority. And that is the latest Wikipedia definition for you. However, in layman terms, what is the best way to explain it? Let’s think of a used-car for a purpose of illustration. The new buyer would like to ensure that the car is genuinely owned by the seller, that the car servicing history is fully up to date and any major issues has been picked up transparently in the car service history. In real world that may not be possible always. Let’s take another example. We go to our regular family doctor ( GP). Their computer has full history of our health records from illness, diagnosis, medicines and treatments. If we go to another city, it would be very important that the new doctor has full information as well. Sometimes things do not work that way. And this is where the power of Blockchain comes into play. Blockchain is like a decentralized and distributed computer or electronic database existing on multiple computers at the same time ( but not owned by any big company specifically atall). The database keeps growing continuously as new sets of key information, or ‘blocks’, are added to it. Each block contains a very important information - timestamp and a link to the previous block. These then actually form a chain, everyone in the network gets a copy of the whole database but the database is not managed by any particular body, person or corporation. Entire old block are preserved forever and new blocks are added to the ledger irreversibly, making it next to impossible to manipulate by faking documents, transactions and other information. And yes, hackers know this and they have no interest in this area as they cannot manipulate here. They will most likely to continue to pry on large private businesses and public sector for ransom not Blockchain for a very long time or may be forever! It is also worthwhile mentioning here that since Blockchain runs on a public network, there are concept of ‘mining’ and rewards to the ‘miners’. In simple terms, people are rewarded for allowing their computers to be used for harnessing the ‘processing power’ of Block execution. Every new transaction on a block ofcourse needs to be executed. Now that you have got a bit of history of the whole Cryptocurrency and Block chain technology mumbo-jumbo, you may be thinking what about another term ICO which everyone keeps talking at the Pub and every now and then on various websites and journals. What are ICO really? Let’s get that out of way as possible. THE DAWN OF INITIAL COIN OFFERING ( aka ICO) You are probably already familiar with the traditional stock market and the concept of Initial Public Offering ( IPO), so we will not go too deep into it. But in a nutshell, until recently businesses have raised money from the public by listing their businesses on the famous stock exchanges. Ofcourse, it is not possible for Mr. John Smith from a little village selling his home made secret strawberry jam globally until he has deep pockets. Neither he can even dream of getting his business listed on a stock exchange to raise cash from public. Hence listing businesses and raising cash has remain the forte of the big and bold with the backing of Venture Capitalist firms, Private Equity firms and the Brokers. And ofcourse there has been the means of the “Angel Investor” who would give cash by taking significant equity stake in a business started by the entrepreneur with their blood and sweat. Then emerged the concept of “Crowd Funding”. Online project funding websites like kickstarter, crowdcube, seedrs emerged. They allowed entrepreneurs to request for funds from the public. But these methods have raised limited funds, grossly regulated by the local authorities and not everyone could raise money from here. So you may ask what IPOs and Crowdfunding has anything to do with Blockchain technology and ICOs? Well what if we say that there are investors out there who believe in the disruptive nature of Blockchain Technology and are also early adopters of cryptocurrency such as bitcoin. Then there is whole liberal aspect of the unregulated market which makes the whole world shift towards a very different perspective. Now an entrepreneur could actually raise money for building their business from very early stages ( sometimes from just a concept level) and accepting the money not in traditional currency ( aka Fiat currency) but Cryptocurrency. And further, each of these new projects could even release their own version or token of an underlying cryptocurrency or digital currency. Now that’s sexy and awesome isn’t it? Well, we are not going to down the route here to inform the readers it is good or bad practice in this paper. We will leave that opinion formation to yourself. Now that you got a high level understanding of ICOs, the next thing you may want to know is that it is pretty straight forward to invest into an ICO ( we will cover more in this paper later). But you need to understand is ICOs just like an IPO are for short duration. Usually they last for few weeks (typically 4 weeks). You get bonus Tokens or the crypto coin to invest early. Once the ICO minimum target is reached ( Softcap) the coins gets listed on the CoinExchange and they start trading. Coinexchange? What are these then? Quite simple, just go back to the analogy between a traditional stock and traditional stock exchange. Very simple concept really. How you buy, sell and do the nitty-gritty just differs. Since there are no brokers or regulators involved here. The whole process is really simple and quick. It may worthwhile sharing a quick snapshot of the ICO market worldwide: It is mind boggling to see that new businesses in really concept stages are raising more money than traditional businesses in just few hours of ICOs getting listed. Obviously this is really bothering lot of people in high ranking posts. We are not here to again debate who is right or wrong here. What we essentially want you to understand is some of these ICOs are really shaping the next wave of revolution. How many of you believed that a Smart Phone with a so called ‘mobile app’ would be worth billion of dollar? Look at Uber, Alibaba, Airbnb, Facebook. Why no one complains about their valuation? May be because these businesses have backing of very large venture capitalists, Private Equity firms? But who runs these VCs and PE firms? Do you really need 70 Billion Dollars to run a Taxi mobile app? We honestly do not know. But what we know for sure is disruptive technologies and businesses built on top of them always have an edge. And then you combine the technology and handover its power to the people you create a social eco-system that is so strong and powerful that it can override and form its own status. And that is what is happening with the ICOs. People are investing into their trust and belief. Now that’s more powerful than any single bank, government or institution ! If you have followed this paper so far, you should have started to get an idea of what is really going on here about the trio – Blockchain Technology, Cryptocurrencices and ICO. However, I am sure you still have may have zillion questions about how you do certain things. Let us try give you answers to some of the most common questions asked by those who really want to get involved. FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS Question 1: I am interested in buying and investing into a Cryptocurrency. Should I buy Bitcoin? Answer: Bitcoin is one of the most popular cryptocurrency. We can not advise you anything specific as you need to do your own research. The number of cryptocurrencies available over the internet as of 6 November 2017 was over 1172 and growing. A new cryptocurrency can be created at any time. By market capitalization, Bitcoin is currently (2017-08-19) the largest blockchain network, followed by Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, Ripple and Litecoin. Question 2: I am interested in investing into a ICO that what research and due-diligence I need to do ? Answer: We are glad that you mentioned the two magical words “research” and “due-diligence”. That is the most important golden nugget that we want you to take-away from this paper. Never-ever invest into a ICO unless you have researched it for how long it takes to build a strong opinion. Here is a good article that gives some really good tips. One quick tip from us would be ensure that Team is really strong and they are genuine people. http://mashable.com/2017/10/25/survive-ico/#CDVyGFJOiiqF Question 3: How do I find out about upcoming ICOs and useful related news and press releases? Answer: There are plenty of websites now that can give you early headsup and keep you well informed. Our favourites are ICOBENCH, COINDESK, ICOALERT. Question 4: Where can we buy and sell ICO and cryptocurrencies? Answer: If you are newbie, it may be a good idea to ask someone in your close network to guide you. There are lots of information and instructional video available on Youtube and other social media network and blogs. Sometimes too much information leads to confusion. You may also want to look into tutorials and training available at UDEMY.COM. But please steer away from self-proclaimed gurus. Do not buy any quick rich scheme related courses and scams. We have found that for beginners https://www.myetherwallet.com/ or https://parity.io/ are good starting point for Ethereum Blockchain related transactions. Question 5: When is a good time to invest in Cryptocurrency? Answer: We wish we had the crystal ball to give you the answer. If we had this crystal ball in 2009 ( when Bitcoin started), we would be very rich people right now. But with a bit of research and education, you can master this. You need to make your own decision when is the right time for you. Question 6: ICO and Cryptocurrency are all hype and dodgy? Answer: We are assuming you are a beginner, you do not know enough about Blockchain technology and how it works, you possibly have not spent enough time learning and tracking about cryptocurrencies. There is also a possibility you have never invested in a cryptocurrency or ICO. Or possibly you invested in a ICO that was a scam. You possibly could be a sophisticated investor in property, traditional shares, gold, forex and much more. But may be you do not want to know any more about Digital currencies or Technology as it is not your “comfort zone”. So the question is how much of homework you have done to assess if this whole concept for you is really interesting or completely ruled out? The decision end of the day is yours. AUTHOR: Avijeet Jayashekhar: Has over 20 years of entrepreneurial, management consulting , Technology leadership in UK Financial Services Industry. He also has a long successful property investment business in UK. In his last stint, as Vice President of Barclays Bank UK, he managed large Technology Programme in next generation technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Robotic Process automation and Digital Payments including Blockchain. He has track record of setting up 3 successful global Technology businesses. Integrally part of the London Fintech and PropertyTech businesses, he is a popular mentor and speaker. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Electronic and Computer Science, a Business Management Qualification and Project Qualification from Stanford University. He is a British Citizen of Indian origin and lives near London with his family. Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/avijeetjs/ REFERENCES: https://icobench.com/statshttps://www.coinbase.com/https://www.icoalert.com/https://www.coindesk.com/information/what-is-a-distributed-ledgehttps://tokentarget.com/the-evolution-of-the-ico-2017-and-beyond-2/http://www.ilovegrowingmarijuana.com/the-basics-of-cryptocurrency/http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/0/cryptocurrency/https://themerkle.com/top-10-cryptocurrency-icos-throughout-2017-to-date/https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blockchainhttp://mashable.com/2017/10/25/survive-ico/#CDVyGFJOiiqFhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_cryptocurrencieshttps://en.insider.pro/tutorials/2017-09-04/what-blockchain-laymans-terms/
21 years old, newborn to the world of independent adults! (EU)
Hello all! I wanted to do a brief introduction and ask some advice. I am 21 years old, still living in my parents house, and with around 500€ saved, because I spent the rest travelling last year. I live in Barcelona, Spain. I recently discovered this whole world about personal finance, financial independence and investments, and I wanna use my (tiny) savings wisely. I've been glancing over the different wikis on these topics, but there's so much info and so many links and new concepts that I just got so overwhelmed. Just asking where should I start? Any book, link, blog, video? I insist I don't know anything about anything, and I'd like to have a broad understanding of the structure of the system we live in, and the strategies that apply. Investing and trading have been catching my eye lately. I've been learning about the forex market (I know, I know there's a full load of scam out there, been studying cautiously), and I'm interested in the other financial markets as well. But now I realize that investing and trading would require way more money saved (or am I wrong?). Anyway, I'm a newborn to the world of independent adults! Any advice will be useful. Thanks and I hope to see you all around from now on.
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MTGOX should record its dark pool transactions as OTC.
This is how every real market in the world does it. I have a sneaking suspicion that the only thing keeping the bitcoin price up is people selling in the dark pool, then buying on the open market. There's no way to really know without full disclosure. Using the dark pool is equivalent to a Forex scam: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forex_scam
My dad wants me to trade forex in the future, how do I change his views? any advice is appreciated.
So a long time ago, my dad clicked an ad that brought him to ufxmarkets, which promised him a lot of money. So right away he put $3000 and lost it all eventually because it was a scam. He recognized it was a mistake but he still wanted to trade forex, so now he's moved on to fxcm.ca, which I read may be a scam, linklink2 Yesterday, he told me he getssignals from a "guru" in New Zealand or Australia, I don't remember, and he basically wants me to replace him, that way he doesn't have to pay for one and always rely on someone he didn't know. He said that he made $160 just yesterday, so that surprised me. He then told me to study about it, and if I don't wanna do it, I don't have to. So today, after researching, I've seen people say that forex trading is unregulated, high risk and is basically gambling, (no skill, all luck), and online trading (what my dad is doing) are scams. But some people say otherwise. So basically my questions are, is forex trading a whole, a scam? And is fxcm.ca a scam? Should my dad stop forex trading? He thinks forex trading can be his main income if I help him, and he also finds it fun, so is forex trading pretty much his way of gambling,? Gambiling is prohibited in our religion so clarification on this will help.
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