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Happy New Year 2009!


Wish y’all a very happy and prosperous 2009.

For me the new year will bring along some happy and sad news., the web site Kaushik and I started has now reached a logical end – we are going to shut it down.

What a year, was 2008. I started off moving to Navi Mumbai, and the big kahoona crash happened in January, right around my move, and I ended up making enough to pay for the move and a little bit. We had the web site on, and went and did the VC rounds, and I’m now thankful they didn’t invest – we knew the market was going down, but not that everything related to the internet in India and traders in general too. That part came as a realisation only in April.

We then stopped work on the site – it continued to be updated till yesterday – and we scaled our way into algorithmic trading. That went on to two months of discretionary trading, then getting intraday data, building systems in Wealth-Lab, testing and refining in Excel, running real money for over 6 months on it, working with a potential deal, watching the deal fall through after a long discussion, trading another client’s money, understanding how the “system” works and eventually, realising this will take us a while longer.

Having done only the site and some trading for a year and a little bit, I’ve found, like Kaushik, that I’ve learnt a lot: a bear market, trading the short side, working with client funds, understanding the importance of sentiment. I wish I could say I became rich along the way – but I didn’t. This business is about making money, but you gotta have enough to start with – and I’m undercapitalised that way.

Yet, there is hope and there is always opportunity. Trading systems is what I love and I will continue it – 2009 will be about working to build a great trading system company. How to do it is a challenge; but what’s life without a few challenges?

So I’ll add a new one to the mix. I’m moving to Delhi. Gurgaon to be precise. That’s where my wife has opportunities – I know I’ve asked for her career to be sidelined as I went on to Mumbai, but Gurgaon will let her do what she wants. (she’s lived there, I’ve grown up in Delhi – so it’s not unfamiliar territory)

What next? I don’t know. There are opportunities that I will have to explore. Some come in the area of system trading, others in wealth management. There is perhaps a way to combine them both. More details in Feb, when I will know the exact path ahead; and I have exactly two choices.

Whatever happens, this blog will continue and if anything I will get more consistent in the quantity of posts.

So again, I wish you a happy 2009. Some of you have patiently read my raving, ranting posts about everything. Some of you have joined recently and signed on. Some of you have asked questions I haven’t answered, and some of you have issues I am not quite qualified to solve. I thank you all for your patience, for reading in, and I hope I’ll continue to be relevant. And I hope I’ll be able to help more people understand this crazy world of financial markets, and yes, I hope I’ll make a lot of money in 2009. It’s going to be a fun year!

(Bonus: The worst predictions of 2008. I hope I don’t make that grade in 2009!)


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