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The Man Who Turned A $15,000 Trading Account Into $3.3 Million And The Lessons I Learned From It

   By: Mark Crisp

I know a man who turned a $15,000 trading account into $3.3 Million. It was an amazing stroke of luck. He even admits this.

"MARK, I am no fool. I know I was just plain lucky. I don't have magical system. I am not privy to insider information. I merely gambled BIG on the right stocks at the right time. It was no different than winning the lottery. I seriously doubt I could ever repeat it."

Obviously my first question was:

"How did you manage this? What stocks did you trade and why?"

Here's what floored me. But it shouldn't have done so. His massive wealth creating principles are exactly what the big stock traders throughout history have been preaching for years.

Here's how he did it:

1) In 1999 in the final leg of the run-away bull market "bubble" he opened a trading account with just over $15,000. Simply because all his co-workers/friends/family/neighbors kept telling him how much easy money was being made in the stock market. He had never read any books or bought any systems. Never attended a seminars. So he was lucky in that his head was not filled with the B*S* most spill out.

2) He attended a few stock market chat boards and everyone seemed to be excited about a stock called Microstrategy. It was trading at about $10 and he made his mind up that if it rose to $14 he would buy. "Made sense to buy a rising stock" he told me. The stock hit $14 in no time so he bought 1,000 shares at $14.50. He took a deep breath and held on.

3) The stock kept going up 15%,25%+ in a week hardly ever stopping. It made me laugh how much easy money I was making. People kept telling me to get out as the stock rose but I figured if it fell by XX% I would exit then. As the stock kept rising and rising way beyond what anyone ever thought possible I made a decision that if the stock made it to $290 I would exit. No question asked. A few weeks later it did and I sold out. I now had an account size of $290,000 from a starting capital of $15,000.

4) "I thought this was too easy" Boy was I right. I then made another 5 trades and lost on everyone. Qcom, YHOO, AMZN were some of the stocks people kept telling me were going to go up big. but I lost thousands of dollars on each one of them. My $290,000 account was whittled down to $245,000. I decided to withdraw$45,000 and leave the rest in until the general conditions improved. I took a long vacation to Hawaii with my profits. How sweet.

5) I never traded for over 2 1/2 years.... I only wanted another exciting stock like Microstrategy. Going for small 15%- 20% profits seemed like a waste of time to me. I wanted a big, huge, winner or nothing. then in July 2003 a stock called TASR seemed to fit this bill. There was a lot of excitement. The stock was flying up. People were buying in and the market conditions seemed much more positive. I decided if the stock rose to $12 I was going to buy with all my account. I was only playing with "house money now" and I was prepared to risk it big to win big. I bought 16,600 TASR at $12....boy was a nervous wreck for a few days as the stock "gyrated". THEN it took off. Just like Microstrategy did. It seemed everyone wanted in and it was the talk of the stock market over the next 8 months.. Can you imagine how I felt when the price rose to $60? I was a paper millionaire. I decided not to be too greedy and took some of my profits off the table..... I sold 6,600 at $60 ($396,000) so I still had 10,000 in TASR and the pressure was off. It now became a game. How high could TASR go? Could it defy gravity?

6) I simply trailed my exit behind the closing price. Giving it enough leeway to avoid being exited through natural gyrations. In April 2004 I was exited at $290. I sold 10,000 shares at $290 for $2.9 MILLION. Coupled with my 6,600 I sold for $396,000 it meant my account was now at: $3,296,000 Million And that's how I did it.

It's an amazing story. But here are the points you can really take home in the hope of achieving something similar one day:

1) He went for the truly big moves with big capital. there was no "diversification" here.

2) Luckily, he got into the truly biggest movers of that market cycle.

3) He held on for big profits. Most people make a quick 20% (+/-) profit and exit... Imagine missing out on these huge gains because you took a small, quick profit?

4) He made his money during bull markets. Lost it during bear markets. But at least he kept away from the worst of the bear markets.

5) He traded without fear. Scared money can't make big money in the stock market.

6) Absolutely no fancy computer driven trading system that costs thousands of dollars needed.

7) His exit strategy was simply driven by PRICE...No-one opinion was followed.

8) It's better to be lucky than smart.

What he actually did was exactly what Jesse Livermore/Darvas etc.. have preached for many years.

Mark Crisp
The Stress Free Momentum Stock Trader

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