Ever wanted to be a trader?

Business & entrepreneurship, Internet, Personal finance

In general and on this site, I tout the merits of long-term value investing, but if you’ve ever been curious to try your hand at trading, why not try out ? It’s a new site and concept, brought to you by the brains behind , where you can win weekly real cash trading fake money and creating a pretend portfolio out of real stocks in real time. The idea behind it’s the same as TopCoder: find good traders (or in the case of TopCoder, programmers) around the world to hire. For those of us who are more investment-minded, it’s a riskless way to try short-term trading, shorting, covering, just to see what it’s like and whether there’s anything we can learn from it.

Whether this is a viable business model will have to be seen. They’re just starting out and were still in beta last month, so for now the prize money is on the low end at $50 for each competition ’til they’re sure all the kinks are worked out, when it should rise to $500 or thereabouts. Once you register, there’s a practice portfolio you can use to get the hang of how it all works, along with a handy “reset portfolio” button if you decide you just dug too deep a hole and need to wipe the slate clean. Keep in mind that that’s an unrated portfolio, and only the weekly competitions get you ratings (and hence winnings, and potentially a future job, if you’re in it for that).

If you try it out, leave some comments here and let me know what you think. I’ve been toying with it myself for the last couple of weeks, and I can definitely say that trading isn’t my forte and I wouldn’t do it unless it’s just for fun like on Equitrader. I’ll write more on why later!


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One Feedback on "Ever wanted to be a trader?"

Would you invest in what Equitrader is offering? ยป

[…] A few weeks ago, I wrote about Equitrader, the site that’s attempting to bring brains and talent all over the world into the world of daytrading just as Topcoder has done for programming. So far, it’s fared much better than I expected. I’m not sure how much overlap in membership there is between the two sites, but discussions among members in forums have turned technical, with participants discussing ways to create automated programs to do trading. Program trading is not something the average person can probably accomplish easily. And some of the returns are definitely impressive. (Incidentally, if you see me listed on the site, you can believe that my participation is almost entirely passive.) […]