Turning Life Experiences Into An Options Trading Career
In this article:
- Leading by example in options trading
- ‘Dark pools’ can reveal hidden trades
- Pursuing trading gains ‘drama free’
Who doesn’t want to follow a leader?
Traders follow leading indexes, leading sectors, leading stocks, and leading price action.
It makes sense for traders to forge a path ahead in this uncertain stock market by following a leader.
The Simpler Trading team has a cadre of leaders, including a trader who knows about leading in the trenches – literally, in the trenches.
Turning experience into an options trading career
Kody Ashmore, Director of Weekly Options Strategies at Simpler Trading, has a broad range of trading experience and has displayed leadership in our trading community.
Kody began his path to leadership at an early age.
While in high school, he enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps (USMC) as a rifleman. He completed two tours in Iraq, finished a variety of courses, and earned service awards and medals.
Following his military service, Kody became a paramedic and eventually worked as a field medic, paramedic instructor, and flight medic. Kody also worked for the U.S. government in various “high threat” locations as a tactical medic.
During his USMC service overseas, Kody began exploring a way to make money beyond his limited military earnings. With his first child on the way he wanted to improve financial options for his growing family.
Kody’s search led him to begin a trading career by day trading, but slow internet service hampered his efforts. Kody discovered that day trading was a nearly impossible income pursuit while overseas.
Kody turned to swing trading on stock options. Options trading presented the opportunity to manage risk based on position size. And, low capital requirements opened the potential for substantial gains. This seemed a perfect fit for his goals.
Kody mastered swing trading and then found employment with a firm as a proprietary (prop) trader. This presented an outlet to further leverage his capital, and he has been trading ever since.
Over the years traders joined the Simpler Trading team following a variety of life experiences. Each trader tends to have a unique value set – they engage and excel when a problem needs to be solved.
They also have a sharing nature. In the Simpler Trading view there is no need to trade alone. The goal is to open doors to encourage traders of varying skill levels and account sizes to follow this team of experienced traders and connect with a mentor, or several.
Mentors help build trading skills
Trading is a learned skill for anyone who wants to take on the challenge.
But this is not a challenge to take lightly, or attempt alone.
All team members at Simpler Trading at one point worked with a mentor when learning to trade. A mentor can share signals, tools, and strategies, and actively demonstrate the possibilities of trading setups.
Simpler Trading established online trading rooms that provide a community where traders can engage the market in real-time and work to help other traders gain needed skills.
Since joining Simpler’s team, Kody has demonstrated his insight into catching winning trades in a turbulent stock market as he developed into the role of a mentor.
He caught a winning trade in Twitter after Elon Musk announced intentions to purchase a large stake in the social media platform. This was a fast, news-driven trade played by Kody who detailed how the trade worked to his advantage.
Kody shared how his style of trading has helped boost his trading account in a recent 60-day run. This was all part of his 1% per day trading strategy.
Here’s how it played out:
The goal for Kody isn’t necessarily massive profits, but consistent wins that create a profit and loss pattern that delivers positive performance. Here is a snapshot of his recent run:
Kody is also very earnest about helping traders develop an edge in the stock market.
One of the ways he gains an edge in the market is through zero days to expiration (0DTE) options plays. These trades are executed on the last day of expiration of an options contract in the S&P 500 (SPX). These setups can limit risk because the contract is closed at the end of the day (the SPX settles in cash) with no overnight exposure and no worry about shares being assigned to the trading account.
This allows traders to find an options setup earlier in the trading session and then let the contract expire at the end of the day. These trades have rapidly decaying premium that can be calculated for profit or loss depending on the asset’s price action.
Retail traders face off against ‘dark pools’
Many retail traders – those who trade their own accounts – often don’t realize the challenge when trading against institutional investors such as big banks, insurance companies, or hedge funds.
These “big players” are known to tap into dark pools in the trading world.
Institutional investors – such as pension funds and mutual funds – are able to trade with liquidity and discounted commissions. Trade transactions in this non-public financial exchange are hidden until completion.
Dark pools, also known as alternative trading systems, allow placing orders outside public view and without requiring users to display the size and price of orders to others in the dark pool.
While appearing shady, dark pools fall under the oversight of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Regulations for dark pools are more loosely regulated than public exchanges (which are open to retail traders).
Institutional investors can use these trading arenas for large-volume trades without pressure from price action in the wider market. It may seem like a nice setup, but these trades don’t always deliver the expected results for the investors.
Still, these non-public trades can pose added risk to the general trading community. For example, retail traders could execute options on a stock without knowing an institution is working a trade at the same time in the dark pool. The counter effect may cause a price difference that places the retail trader operating publicly on the wrong side of price movement.
Kody trades dark pool setups on a regular basis, and has been sharing his strategy with the Simpler Trading membership. He works to flip dark pool trading from an obstacle into an edge for retail traders.
He does this by tracking market moves that expose dark pool trading activity showing up in the retail trading arena. This “tape reading” can be complex for some traders because it doesn’t depend fully on stock charts and works to anticipate more immediate results in market prices.
Kody follows a predetermined routine that helps gather timely data on possible stock direction using dark pool trading information.
Start, end trading days with less drama
What is the possibility of fulfilling the trading day in under an hour?
With that goal in mind, Kody found his strategy that can fulfill his trading day in just minutes.
As mentioned above, Kody grew his trading account considerably in three months using his 1% per day strategy. And now he has a step-by-step interactive training that allows other traders to follow his lead.
Kody starts his day by deciding where he thinks the market will NOT go (his bias). Using 0DTE options plays, Kody works trades within the first 15-20 minutes of the trading day. He lets the trades ride through the day before checking the setup as the cash session closes.
His goal is gaining a minimum of 1% of his account value from the trade.
Kody has developed his strategy which requires no scanning and little to no drama as the trade moves forward during the trading session. He enters the trade and gets out within the same day, eliminating overnight risk. He can work this strategy with as little as $1,000 in a trading account.
Kody has also advanced this strategy to trade in both his $25,000 account and $100,000 because the principles remain the same. This presents an opportunity for traders to adapt the strategy to fit individualized trading styles.
More to trading than just profit
Kody doesn’t operate as a trader from just a “profit” standpoint.
The value he uncovered with his trading style and strategies is how to put time on his side when trading options. And, more importantly, how to put time back into his life for him and his family.
How might “drama free” trading work for you as a trader?