EP 034: Launching a fund at 26, and trading trends in 40 global futures markets w/ Michael Melissinos

Aaron Fifield Podcast 0 Comments


When the market went down in ’08 this weeks guest, Michael Melissinos was right there, in the thick of it. He was an analyst on the trading desk at Bear Stearns, and then later at JP Morgan after they were bought out.

Since then, Michael’s left his Wall Street days behind him, and now trades a fund of his own, using a systematic trend following approach, that operates on 40 global futures markets.

Although I missed a large chunk of the story there, you’ll hear how Michael got to this stage of his career during the interview. And a few of the lessons that shaped him into the trader he is today, including the advice he received from Market Wizard, Ed Seykota.

I also like Michael’s thoughts around why you should consider playing a game that’s larger than money, and the emphasis he places on preparation.

Lessons learnt in this interview:

  • The two ‘ah-ha’ moments that had Mike determined to leave his job on Wall Street, and tackle his goal of starting a fund.
  • How Mike took inspiration from young entrepreneurs and the startup scene, after setting out on his own.
  • Mike shares the various ways that Ed Seykota (Market Wizard) and the Trading Tribe helped him to conquer his fears about launching a hedge fund.
  • The difference between making a lot of money, and creating a well-rounded vision. Why you may be able to medicate the feeling of ‘being poor’ by ‘making a lot of money’ but still wind up miserable.
  • The nuts and bolts of Mike’s trading methodology – a diversified, long term, trend following system.
  • How Mike developed his system (the old fashioned way), from a set of rules to an automated strategy without any prior coding experience.
  • An overview of the minimal infrastructure Mike requires to successfully operate a hedge fund.
  • Why practice and preparation from Mike’s sporting days, are still just as relevant as a trader.
  • Plus much more…

Links and resources mentioned:

  • MelissinosTrading.com – To learn more about Mike, his trading and fund, you can visit the site of Melissinos Trading.
  • Trend Following by Michael Covel – Mike talks about how he originally slammed this book shut, because it made the trend following approach sound far too simple. But now admits, the concepts of trend following really are quite simplistic, and suggests this book as a worthwhile read.
  • Seykota.com – The website of Ed Seykota and his Trading Tribe FAQ. There’s plenty of great content here, but be prepared to dig deep.
  • @MMelissinos – Also be sure to follow Mike on Twitter.

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