EP 098: How successful day trading can fly in the face of conventional wisdom—ex-prop trader, Peter To

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Before day trading equities, Peter To played a lot of online poker and did fairly well for himself. He then dabbled in markets as an investor, but was soon attracted to OTC stocks after discovering a strange inefficiency…

In this episode we spend quite a bit of time talking about Peter’s prop trading experience, both the good and the bad. Trading nihilism and doing everything you supposedly shouldn’t do, why Peter accepts he’s not a “cold blooded assassin” and does trade with the influence of emotion. Plus, we briefly touch on Bitcoin and exchange hacks towards the end too.

Peter also writes about many of these subjects on his blog, which you can read here.

Lessons learned in this interview:

  • The story of how Peter turned $20 into $20,000 playing online poker, became a cynical “Gold Bug”, then a value investor, and eventually an active day trader.
  • How Peter got accepted into a prop trading firm, the good and the bad from his experience, benefits of being a prop trader, and obvious red flags to be aware of.
  • Trading Nihilism: Why some traders do everything that defies conventional wisdom—with conviction, and not only survive, but make significant fortunes.
  • Peter speaks about how emotion influences his trading—meaning he’s not a “cold blooded assassin”, taking breaks, taking it easy, self doubt, and bad habits.

“So many people have done it the ‘wrong way’, that I feel like you’ve got to throw the book out sometimes.”

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Links and resources mentioned:

Illustration by Peter, capturing the moment of his largest losing trade.

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