ADVENTURES OF A CURRENCY TRADER in .NET framework

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ADVENTURES OF A CURRENCY TRADER
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It didn t seem to matter. George saw me right away. The office wasn t any different from the last time I d seen it. Just as dumpy as before. This time I had a new appreciation for it. I started to wonder what George s house looked like. Did he live in his car, or under a bridge I would soon find out. But first he had questions for me. Lots of questions. What did you find he asked. You specifically asked me to find out if I could figure out a way to take the carry trade on a retail platform, I answered. That was my focus. I stayed up all night on Friday and did a ton of research on it. And You found that it s impossible. This was a statement of fact, meant to encourage me to move on to the next point. So he was not so mildly shocked when I announced: Oh, it s very possible. Just not in the exact same way that you do it. His eyes brightened. Really Now I want to hear more. I pulled out my notebook and flipped open to the tab I d marked Interest Rates Retail Carry Trade. Then I began: You talked about borrowing cheap money and then investing in high-interest currencies. I sat down for at least two hours and learned why that works. It makes perfect sense to me. A high-rated borrower has, in effect, a huge pool of capital to draw from. I realized that a wise investor should always look to borrow at the lowest rates and invest for the highest rates possible, combined with a reasonable expectation of return. I hadn t ever considered that, not because it doesn t make sense, but rather because it s just not something I would have thought about. George smiled. And now that you thought about it, what did you learn I learned that carry traders don t just invest in currencies. They also invest in U.S. stocks, bonds from around the world, real estate, they even purchase entire companies with the borrowed money. There is a whole lot of borrowed Yen out there. But I will get to that point later. I am sure I am not telling you anything that you don t already know. He nodded. Probably true. But I have thirty minutes and I want to hear it all again. I looked down over my notes. There was no possible way for me to get through everything in half an hour. But I plodded onward: Once I had an understanding of why it worked, and believe me, it took me a while to figure it out, I realized that I could try to apply the same principles in my currency trading. I called my currency dealer and asked about interest rates. It turns out that retail currency platforms charge and pay out interest in the same way that a bank would charge or pay interest. Only retail platforms call it a swap rate, and the interest is calculated at the end of every currency trading day in other words, at five P.M. eastern time.
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How much are they charging or paying out Well, for my research here, I used the British Pound versus the Japanese Yen, the GBP/JPY. Because interest rates in Japan are at zero, and rates in the United Kingdom are at 4 percent and, I might add, expected to keep rising when I buy one standard lot of the GBP/JPY cross pair in my trading account, which is $100,000 worth of currency, I get paid about $20 every day in interest. What kind of leverage do they give you That s my next point. I have 400 1 leverage with my dealer, which I know sounds ridiculous. It s a ton of leverage. But the leverage is almost irrelevant, I told him, and this is where it gets exciting. I hope I haven t gone totally wrong with this research, because I think I stumbled onto something really amazing. Let s say that I open an account with Universal Currency Brokers. I put $100,000 in the account. I don t have that much money, but let s just say I do. I put up only $10,000 of that money for margin. And because of leverage, they let me buy $4,000,000 worth of GBP/JPY, or forty standard lots. Every day that I hold that currency, I get paid $20 for every standard lot, or $800. Just for holding onto the currency pair in a buy position. This sounds too good to be true, but I called around that night to at least 20 currency dealers. I found that almost all of them are paying interest in those amounts. Almost all of them. I hope I m okay so far. George nodded. He looked at his watch. I could tell that I had captured his interest. He said: I ordered in some sandwiches but I m losing my appetite while you talk to me about money. Me, too. I can eat later. Good. So far, this is fine research you ve done. This is slightly different than the way it works for us, but it s perfect so far. I m happy to hear that. If the research was faulty up to this point, I d have nothing left to say. But here s what comes next: I thought, it sounds too easy to just buy the GBP/JPY each day and try to earn $800. Why Because the currency pair might fall, instead of rise. You know, if some news comes out, or if there is a terrorist act, the currency pair is going to bounce around. And for each standard lot traded, a pip is worth about nine dollars. Say it drops 100 pips, and I ve traded 40 standard. If the pair falls 100 pips in one day, I would lose 100 times nine dollars times forty that s 100 pips, times nine dollars per standard lot, times forty standard lots traded. That s a lot of money. Way more than I would be earning from the interest. It s just not worth the risk then, he added. Right. It would be ridiculous. But, if I could find good levels at which to buy the currency pair, and hold on, then I would be in good shape. Really good shape. Not only could I earn interest, but I would be earning pip gains, too. This would be far better than taking the same type of trade with
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