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anonguest
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A little anecdote for those who may care to hear it.

To cut a long story short.....met briefly with a former work colleague, in a semi-social context, and who had a 'junior' with him - an affable 23 year old recent engineering graduate.

Chat covered a range of topics and managed somehow to touch on finance/economics, from which it emerged that said junior was planning on taking up 'trading' as a source of extra income - and mentioned an online service, offering trial 'practice with no money' accounts, that markets seem to be going only one way (i.e. up), etc etc etc. but, in the process, demonsrtated a profound ignorance of even the basics of economics and finance.

At which point my friend and former colleague, knowing that I am reasonably conversant on stockmarkets and their history, interrupted and said, looking at me with a slight grin, "A shoeshine boy moment?" - said with that quizzical sort of look when one wants to put a question mark at the end of the statement.

I acknowledged with a "Hmmmmm.....", indicating I knew what he was referring to.

Needless to say said junior looked at us feeling left out and queried the meaning of the term 'shoeshine boy'. At which point my friend made a barely visible shaking of his head, in dismay, which said junior did not see (him still looking at me)

I very gently told said Junior to "Google it and see what you find."

Conversation/meeting moved on and finished soon after.

I don't have a multi-million portfolio and personal stockbroker at my beck and call. But if I did I could well have been tempted to call him as soon as I got home, telling him to "Sell Everything!"

Edited by anonguest
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I'll raise you China.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-01-11/it-s-amateur-hour-in-the-booming-chinese-stock-market

As Chinese individual investors pour back into the world’s hottest stock market, they’re leaving their fingerprints all over the place. The most telltale sign: The Chinese equivalent of penny stocks, assets that have long held an allure for amateurs, are trouncing the benchmark index.

Shares in China’s CSI 300 Index that were quoted below 5 yuan (81 cents) at the end of September have since jumped an average 63 percent. That compares with a 35 percent gain for all index stocks and 11 percent for those priced above 50 yuan.

That outsized rally reflects the growing market impact of inexperienced investors in a country where new stock accounts are opening at the fastest pace since 2007 and individuals comprise about 80 percent of equity trading. While professional investors measure a stock’s worth relative to the company’s assets or earnings prospects, it’s the price appearing on computer screens that matters most to people like 35-year-old housewife He Mei. As she sees it, the math is simple -- low price equals low risk and lots of value.

“Expensive stocks are risky,” she said by phone from the southwestern city of Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan province. “Any drops will result in huge losses.”

..

Yuan Shuai, a security guard for Beijing’s subway system, illustrates the challenge for authorities as they try to influence investor psychology. The 26-year-old, who visited a GF Securities Co. outlet in the Chinese capital’s Xicheng district to open a trading account on Dec. 31, said he only buys shares trading below 10 yuan.

“I feel cheap stocks are less risky -- big drops won’t result in huge losses for me,” Yuan said. “I don’t know too much about investing, but the stocks my friends recommended have been soaring in the past few weeks.”

Perhaps it should be changed from shoeshine boy to security guard?

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The sad thing is that a 23 year old engineering graduate feels the need to risk wiping himself out for a source of extra income. If our economy was even remotely productive and functional, he'd be able to have a perfectly decent life in his chosen career.

Indeed. It's the ridiculous and crazy outcome of the casino economy with house prices and risky bets being the economy.

Even the holiday experience comes partly down to betting whether the exchange rate is going in their favour for some people.

Edited by billybong
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There was a comment made by a trader on Twitter yesterday ( a real one) that 'Mom and Pop's' were trading now 'as they love the leverage.'

Apparently Japanese housewives, are or used to be big Forex traders.

I know a retired US housewife who spends 14 hours a day at the screen, trading more volatile 'crosses' (but she makes out like a bandit though, has a very strong work ethic and does her research).

I too have a distinctly uneasy feeling about this.

Its not 'passive income'

Edited by aSecureTenant
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There was a comment made by a trader on Twitter yesterday ( a real one) that 'Mom and Pop's' were trading now 'as they love the leverage.'

Apparently Japanese housewives, are or used to be big Forex traders.

I know a retired US housewife who spends 14 hours a day at the screen, trading more volatile 'crosses' (but she makes out like a bandit though, has a very strong work ethic and does her research).

I too have a distinctly uneasy feeling about this.

Its not 'passive income'

janet-yellen-afp-640x480.jpg

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The sad thing is that a 23 year old engineering graduate feels the need to risk wiping himself out for a source of extra income. If our economy was even remotely productive and functional, he'd be able to have a perfectly decent life in his chosen career.

I think I was that boy once - circa 1997. Shiney eyed engineer graduate working in IT thinking of a possible career in the city.

Actually I did quite well for a while on my own account, I recall making £8k in a week at one point.

That said, the death of dot com somewhat curtailed those ambitions.

The one thing I will say though is that he is starting later in the cycle. In 1997, the markets still had someway to run.

Edited by Mikhail Liebenstein
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I used to work with a chap "scrum master" was his title , being a bit dim i thought naturally this was something to do with rugby but turns out he plays with software all day and had an eye on the stock market too on his multi screen desk laden with 23" led monitors :rolleyes:

being a bit of a smug git he took great delight in telling us all he was quitting his job to be a forex currency trader at home , sadly it must not have gone to plan as he came back to work after a couple of years not seen him personally but no doubt he`s not as smug anymore :lol:

i always thought you gave up work as you are financially sound ??

Edited by longgone
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I know a few economics students :rolleyes: who suddenly think they've got an insight and will make a mint by trading. I had to explain to them, for example, that the broker trades against the client and sometimes doesn't even place their trades.

They didn't believe me of course, they knew better!

Who would have known that betting up a graph going up or down would soak up so much human effort...

http://www.cityam.com/article/your-broker-trading-against-you

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I know a few economics students :rolleyes: who suddenly think they've got an insight and will make a mint by trading. I had to explain to them, for example, that the broker trades against the client and sometimes doesn't even place their trades.

They didn't believe me of course, they knew better!

Who would have known that betting up a graph going up or down would soak up so much human effort...

http://www.cityam.com/article/your-broker-trading-against-you

sounds like a waste of time and life to me , just remember there is no easy way to a buck legally and you won`t go far wrong.

now if you bend the rules a bit i`m sure you will do ok. , worked for the bankers :lol:

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