Q What is your trading background?
A In 1992, I started in the Goldman Sachs graduate training program in New York, where I learned to trade NYSE and Nasdaq listed shares. I also spent time on the famous Risk Arbitrage trading desk. After that I traded UK and European shares, both for clients as well as on behalf of Goldman. In 2002 I became a hedge fund manager and since then have also traded derivatives, futures, commodities, currencies, fixed income and credit.
Q What will you be covering in your session at City A.M.’s trading conference on 24 May?
A I will show that there are many different ways to express the same view – you can do so by trading stocks, commodities or even currencies. I will also talk about trading mistakes and give some trading tips.
Q Why is this important for traders?
A When things go wrong it doesn’t matter what you trade, we all feel sick in the same way.
Q What is the most important lesson you have learned as a trader?
A You have to trade because you love it, never for the money. I love it because it is intellectually one of the most difficult occupations in the world. It is a puzzle that continuously changes. As a heart surgeon or rocket scientist you keep repeating the same task, as a trader every day requires a new solution.
Q What are the most important tools a trader needs to have?
A The ability to find original ideas and analyse them. The technical skills and street smarts to get the timing right. The mental strength to follow your own path and to play a lone hand. The risk control to size the bets. I cover all these points and much more in my 5-Step-Trading® course.
Q What is the worst mistake a trader can make?
A There are millions of mistakes a trader can make. The worst one is the one that ends your trading career, normally because of taking excessive risk.
Q Why are you excited to be taking part in City A.M.’s trading conference?
A City A.M. is genuinely trying to make a difference in the world of trading seminars, which is exactly what I try to do myself. I love trading and everything around it and am looking forward not only to speaking, but also listening to the other speakers.
Lex van Dam is speaking on Five Steps to Trading Success at City A.M.’s one-day conference on 24 May. To meet him and dozens more trading gurus, buy your £80 ticket today:
LEX VAN DAM
2.20PM-3.20PM, 24 MAY
Lex van Dam (@lexvandam) is a Goldman Sachs veteran, the bestselling author of How to Make Money Trading and star of Million Dollar Traders. His Trading Academy (www.lexvandam.com), home of the 5-Step-Trading® course, has a global following, and he is widely quoted on Reuters, Bloomberg and CNN.