EP 022: How to be a better trader tomorrow – sharp insights with SMB co-founder @MikeBellafiore

Aaron Fifield Podcast 7 Comments

This week I have great pleasure in saying, my guest on the show is Mike Bellafiore.

Mike is the co-founder of SMB Capital, a proprietary trading firm in New York City, as well as SMB University which is the arm for trader education. He’s also the author of two very popular trading books ‘One Good Trade’ and ‘The Playbook’.

Additionally, Mike is a regular contributor to Yahoo Finance, and often appears on CNBC’s Fast Money, CNN Money, Bloomberg, and Fox Business. But even with all of this going on Mike is still a very active, very successful trader.

During our interview, Mike delivers some great insight about traders often confusing psychology for a lack of edge, and an overview for one of his favorite setups which has been labeled ‘The Money Trade’. Plus, he shares the development program new traders go through when joining SMB Capital, and a few top-level pointers on how to achieve a sustainable trading style.

And I just want to point out this interview was recorded on the 20th of May, only reason I say this is because Mike mentions a few market events during this interview.

Note: Click here to grab a free copy of ‘The One Thing I Wish Someone Would’ve Told Me Before I Started Trading…’

“Lots of times people mistake psychology with a lack of edge.”

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“If you cant be scalable then why are you actually in this game?”

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“You can be better tomorrow, than you are today.”

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Lessons learnt in this interview:

  • The large difference between mentoring, coaching and education, why all are important but vastly different. Mike speaks about a real life example to make things clear.
  • Mike discusses the reality of needing a trading edge. Although it is hard to find a true edge, having one will help you to avoid many of the psychological issues traders experience.
  • The reason Mike was motivated to start a proprietary trading firm. How he had no idea what he was getting himself into, and the challenges that were in-front of him.
  • An overview for one of his favourite setups, The Money Trade. And why Mike views the characteristics of this setup as a fundamentally sound trade.
  • A few of the traits that will either reinforce why you are becoming a trader, or make you question if this is something you should even be doing.
  • The process and training program new traders to through when entering the firm, and the time expectancy before they reach a level of profitability. Plus, the comparison to prop traders and retail traders.
  • Mike talks about the key to a sustainable trading style, knowing the variables, loving your trades, and why you must be able to scale your trading method. Like he says, “We are not here to make $50K a year!”
  • And much, much more…

Links and resources mentioned:

  • One Good Trade – Is the first book authored by Mike Bellafiore. This title has become a go-to for prop traders around the globe, as it includes anecdotes of traders who have and have not made it. Plus, the important trading principals you need to grasp.
  • The Playbook – This is the second book written by Mike, and this one is a serious dive into how you should identify your best trades, archive them and build from them, to become a better trader. Essentially this book is a guide to finding the trades that make the most sense to you, finding more of them and then trading them with more size.
  • SMBu.com – The home for SMB University, where you can learn more about the trading education Mike and his team provide. You will also discover the blog, where Mike regularly posts interesting articles on how to improve your trading.
  • SMBcap.com – The home for SMB Capital, where you can learn more about the proprietary trading firm, trader development programs, careers and more.
  • @MikeBellafiore – Also be sure to follow Mike on Twitter.

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