Friday, December 18, 2009

Why Choose Vim Trading?

What is so special about your product?
There are five elements to the Vim Trading “Steps to Success” training programme.
1. Understanding the psychology of markets and your emotions (how to deal with them)
2. Money and risk management (simple but most important)
3. Investment strategies, we cover developing, testing and implement strategies.
4. The skill set; to physically trade from your office or home you require a certain skill set. The practical nature of this programme give you the skill set required.
5. Learning how to analyze charts and identify the most probable future direction of the trend. (this is where most people focus for success, it is important but the least important of the above elements)
For a fraction of the cost of other products we run our course over a three month period so clients can build on their skills between sessions. We will take clients with no experience or knowledge of the markets and within three months give them the knowledge and skills to develop and implement a success investment plan.

Others programmes just offer some of the above elements. For example some programmes can charge over €2,000 for loads of information and some poor technology all of which can be acquired for free if you are smart. Others provide one day and half day workshops on some of the skills and strategies but this is information overload and does not allow time for clients to practice the skills.

What can I take away from the course?
Clients will acquire knowledge, skills and wisdom in the above areas as well as some new perspectives about markets and finance.

What turn around on profits will I make?
If you understand what is said above to come out with this question is a bit silly.
As you may not make a profit at all.
Your success will depend mainly on you implementing a sound, realistic plan with SMART objectives. Then there are an infinite number of factors that can impact (positively and negatively) on your P&L. So while it may seem like a smart question it would be stupid for us to put a figure on the answer as you may lose money or you may become the next Warren Buffet.

What you will have is a clear understand of this fact by the end of the programme so if you get bluffed by someone offering you a magic bullet formula you were not listening in class!!!!!!

Do I need software for the course?
FREE software is provided with your trading account. We will guide clients to what we believe are good sources of free information and resources.

How much time is involved studying at home?
Simple, what you put in is what you get out. The course is run over 10 sessions and not a weekend so clients can build the knowledge and skills as well as learn from the emotions that they experienced trading. The reality is that some people won’t go near it from one week to the next but we recommend doing 2 hours of planned, specific work between sessions. Some clients spend much more time studying and they get more from the contact time as they can ask smart questions and will understand the answers.

Is there an after care service?
Yes there is a mentoring service but this is expensive. One is much better off going away and putting the knowledge and skills into practice with small amounts of money. Then, when you have experienced the real investment world join us for a group get together to explore our experiences. We find the people looking for after care are those that just don’t put the work in during the course and have more money than cop-on. They are a prefect target for a sales guy who comes along offering them a magic bullet solution.

How long will it take before I will be trading on real markets?
We hope clients set up a real micro trading account with €100 straight away and then you are trading real money in the markets. By the end of the course you should have developed an investment plan.

Do I have to set up my own account with a stockbroker?
All clients will set up a demo and/or a real account with the same brokers so we all have the same technology. We will look at a number of different ways to invest but each client’s choice of brokerage beside the demo or micro account should be based on their due diligence. While we cover the steps one takes in choosing technology, brokers and investment vehicles we do not make specific recommendations.

Investing seems like hard work, would I not be better off putting my money on deposit or letting a professional manage my investments?
For many they are better off giving their hard earned savings to an investment manager or putting it on deposit. However, don’t expect to make a great return or even a positive return on your investment. See our blog on the best investment of the past decade.

Even if you choose not to invest yourself, you will be a lot wiser about markets and investing by taken part in training with a company whose only vested interest is giving you an impartial education on the financial world. We give clients the skills and knowledge to “form their own opinion”. Our programmes are based on our understanding of what these requirements are and our knowledge and experience on how adults’ learn best.

If you have any other question please leave a comment or email

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Stocks, Bonds, Property, Cash, or Gold

Here we will look at what was the best investment for your money since the introduction of the Euro. For this illustration we will consider that you had €1,000,000 to invest ten years ago and you wanted a safe place for it?

Option one is, you take the €1million in cash and hide it in a very safe place. You now still have €1million in cash to do what you please. However, you lose to this thing called inflation, but how much?

I think we need to look at the money and credit expansion and not CPI when we consider inflation. So in December 1999 if you had €1million in cash, that was 0.0000027 of the €361billion of Euro currency in circulation at that time. Now your million is just 0.0000012 of the €774billion Euros in circulation. Just 44% or put differently, the Money supply is up 114% during this period.

To put this simply, if your investments or your earnings are not up 114% from what they were 10 years ago you are less well off. Your €1million needs to be more than €2140000 just to keep up with money and credit expansion. This required an 8% annual compounded growth.

So let’s see how the other asset classes performed.
You put your million in a deposit account at net 5% compounded annually and you receive €1,628894

You buy 1 million worth of Irish housing property you get back €1,615,026 and your net rental income possibly €500000 at a rental yield of 4% with interest at 3% so the total is €2,115,026.

You buy €1 million of Irish stock, they are now worth €598541 + the dividends you received.

You buy €1million worth of the DJ Euro Stoxx 50 index, it is now worth €567,800 + the dividends you received.

You buy 3571ozs of gold at €280 an oz. its value is now €2,857,142 less storage costs. A growth of 11% compound annually.

It is a very weird situation when holding real money (gold) in storage outperformed investing your money in any other asset class. We have explored why this is so in previous blogs see and

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Is Personal Bankruptcy a way out?

While the debate on cuts and how they happen is very important I believe what is now paramount for our Government to focus on is changing the current bankruptcy laws. If the union leaders were interested in the citizens and working classes this is where their interest should rest. Based on this years tax take our spending needs to return to 2003 levels. Everybody believes their role is more important than the next. If all departments received their 2003 budget and cut spending accordingly this would be a simplistic and a fair way to do this. Now that is an unending debate however the issue of our draconian bankruptcy legislation and the state of debt many families find themselves in is a much more important issue for many reasons.

· The deflating/contraction of credits cycle we are in is positive for workers and only those whose who have large amounts of debt will suffer. As when prices were inflating and wages trailed, wage will also trail deflation for many.
· This means many in public and private sector jobs will have more cash to spend on cheaper goods and should be willing to take some pay cuts. (Ideally what the market will bear but good luck with trying to get that.)
· Personal bankruptcy is pretty much a last straw as one is perused for 12 years making it unfeasible to be a productive member of society during this time. By allowing people to quickly file for bankruptcy and come out of bankruptcy in a couple of years and get on with life will be much more socially and economically beneficial. They will lose their assets which may be punishment enough. It is unlikely that these people will take on risky investments in the future. The current law is a measure to immunise the creditor from risks. It should be the role of lenders to make prudent not riskless decisions.

It is unlikely that the currently bunch of TDs will make any decisions that will be beneficial to the majority of society or the economy as a whole. It is not that they do not know what to do but like any lifestyle change, many try to take the easy route.

Raising awareness on this issue and uniting those who are indebted will receive much more public support than the current squabbling between public and private workers. With NAMA and bank guarantees the burden of this debt will again fall back on the public. However, drastic action needs to be taken soon.

Free or just serfs

As unions and government go head to head on pay and conditions we the people need to reflect where we are on the spectrum between freedom and serfdom. On a superficial level it looks like we have a liberal society. We have free elections and free press. We have good contract and property legislation. We can dress, do and say pretty much what we feel. However, on further reflection a growing mass are under the spell of government dependency and control.

Firstly we have those on direct government dependency. The number we all know being the 423,000 on the live register. We have the same number dependant on government to pay their pension. There are thousands on Fás C.E. schemes, back to work schemes and other such projects that keep the real unemployment figures down. We then have our 263000 public servants who are at the mercy of the Government for their wages. Thousands are also employed in the community and voluntary sector which is funded through government departments. We have the farmers who since joining the EEC have become dependant on subsidies to survive which has killed off any incentive to become more productive and competitive. We then have Irish and EU regulation which is a massive burden on the farming and fishing sector as well as on small businesses. This burden means big business can be less competitive which means higher costs for consumers. On viewing “big business”, are they capitalistic or just involved in corporatism? Michael O’ Leary’s actions with the EU Transport Commissioner during the recent Lisbon campaign points very much to corporatism. Government support for multinationals also points in this direction. Now in the midst of deflation hundreds of thousands are enslaved to debt and our Government is intent on enslaving our country in foreign debt.

We think that we tried free market capitalism and got burns and we will now take security any day. However, this was just a debt based pyramid scheme. I urge you to discover what market capitalism really is and where true liberty rests.