One of the sucker stories in my trading career (My job at Muscat, where I managed $25 Million and supported almost $600 Million). If someone speaks with me, they wouldn't believe that I've made such a pathetic trade in my life. But that’s the beauty of stock markets. You never know until someone really discloses their real position. Here it is –Enjoy
I guess I took a large position in Ultra short. Ultra short on basket of ETFs – I’ll name them – SKF, SDS, DXD, SMN and that’s it. Before going into story I just want to explain why this would become a loss making trade even before taking a position.
All these Ultra shorts are completely asymmetrical trade and it’s identical to buying deep out of money calls in which call price remain same despite rise in the prices of shares. If markets go down, all these ETFs would go up twice and vice versa. If markets go up it surprisingly goes down too much and it was not at all designed properly by the issuers.
I’d rather prefer to short than going long on these kinds of instruments. Well, now coming into the point.
I took total of almost $700,000 position (Managed $25Million) in the mentioned ETFs. My superior (Manager) is completely against shorting the market ( Well he is actually an Ultra bull who completely missed 2008 downturn as well 2009 raise of the markets) and he was rightly critical about my trade. In couple of day, position was up by 5% and he asked me to book the profits (He was right, but I didn’t do that). I kept that position and eventually went on to keep and saw my position value bleeding by more than 30% in couple of months.
In the mean time, I was right in my short call of EUR/USD at 1.51 and rightly predicted the problems of Europe and asked him to take position in couple of structured instruments (Please check www.investopedia.com for the meaning of structured instruments). He didn’t took that because I got wrong in Ultra shorts and he took some position which he didn’t disclose properly ( He is one of the worst person to work and that is the reason why I left the job, despite performing reasonably well and I’ll put that in a separate write up) and he didn’t took the position. In January 2010, problem in Greece happened and markets sold off and my ETFs got into the place where I bought before couple of months (Break Even point in simple English).
From November and December I asked him to take lot of positions in stocks which he took but didn’t disclose properly to me. I asked him to take position in Apple around$200, Amazon around $100, basket of Agricultural stocks (I clearly predicted Terra as a takeover candidate and it was taken over by CF industries in the month of Jan, 2010) and other possible takeover targets and other stocks. He took that but he didn’t disclose me properly. He screwed me right and left for my ultra short position and he keep on saying that till I put my papers (I made huge money on McDonalds, and almost all Agri stocks, Broadcom, Amazon, and most importantly in Apple for my organization) from the organization.
I was carrying the position for another 4 months and there comes May 2010. I was seeing few erratic movements in the market and I predicted a knee jerk reaction (didn’t discussed within organization but to my close friend) in the markets. Charts also seem to validate that event. There is a technical analyst in our organization and I discussed with him and sent a write up asking him to take further position in that for a short time.
On that day he simply blow down my confidence (Despite that I was confident) by filthy words and he was not interested to add any positions. D-day came and Dow crashed 1000 points (Flash Crash), but nothing happened in my account.
1. Don’t make asymmetrical bet without understanding the underlying instruments
2. Always use stop loss irrespective of your confidence in a particular trade
3. If you get opportunity to minimize the loss and get out of the trade, use that opportunity and exit from the trade.
4. Don’t let your manager to talk about other trades that are no way related to new bets you are making for the organization. Say FUCK OFF in his face, if not it would affect your performance.
5. Ask for transparency in the bets you’re making for the organization. Ask for complete P&L with your manager (Don’t adjust with him in this regard. I did that, but eventually I thought enough is enough and quit the company).
6. Don’t work under Lucky Fool (My manager is a lucky fool than intelligent loser).
7. If you didn't follow the above six lessons, your bonuses and performances would be swallowed by your so called Manager whose primary aim is to screw his subordinates and put the trades in his own name and make money only for him.
Note: I felt deep pain while writing about this particular incident. I dreamt of conquering world with the job I got in Muscat. I really thought I could do lot of things and make money for myself and my organization. I really worked very hard and made lots of money (This Ultra short is the only losing trade- This is the real truth and I could give references) for my organization. Despite my hard work, I've been literally screwed by my filthy manager who cheated everyone who worked for him. I’ve lot of failures in my life and I’m planned to pen down everything in this blog. I believe that this one is failure in a victory. Yeh, I made money for my organization, but not recognized by the members of family office and on top of that my performance bonus got swallowed by my manager.