Episode 41: Interview With Day Trader Papa John.
No, this episode is not about pizza. In this installment of The Steady Trade Podcast, hosts Tim Bohen and Stephen Johnson are interviewing a day trading phenom known as Papa John.
Just about a year into his trading journey, Papa John has a remarkable story. After losing a whopping $16k in his first 6 months of trading, in the past 3-5 months he’s enjoyed an incredible turnaround, skyrocketing into the green. So what changed…and how can other traders learn from him? Listen to find out!
Papa John’s story
Before Papa John was a day trader, he was a gambler. Initially, he was into online poker, but when the laws changed, his dreams were dashed. Then, he learned how to count cards at blackjack. He was finding success with that, but after his son was born he put that on the back burner, hoping to find something that would keep him closer to home.
That’s when he discovered Timothy Sykes. In watching some of the famous trader’s videos, he decided to give it a go. He jumped into his first trade the same morning he set up his brokerage account and made some quick money. He thought: whoa, I’m going to become rich! Well, not so fast. After that initial win, he began to lose…and continued to lose. Over his first six months, he lost $16k.
Gambling with an edge
So what changed? Papa John began to gain his edge.
As a poker player, he’d needed to find an edge before he found success. But once he nailed it, he was consistently profitable for 6 years. With counting cards, he also began to profit once he found his edge. So he began to apply the same principles to his trading and set out to find what his edge could be there.
For one thing, he realized that while he was tracking his trades in a spreadsheet, he wasn’t keeping track of his setups. After learning that Tim Grittani swears by this technique, he began to and was surprised to learn what was actually making him money.
By beginning to focus on the setups that were actually working for him, he was able to turn things around. Over the next 8 weeks, he made 33k from his lowest point. He hasn’t won every time since then but now, about 11 months into his trading, he’s definitely in the green.
Narrowing the edge.
All Stephen wants to know is: Papa John, how did you narrow your edge? Well, in a few ways.
For one thing, Papa John devoted himself to self-improvement. In admitting his weaknesses as a trader, such as risk management and determining position size, he gave himself the opportunity to improve upon them. This allowed him to become a far stronger trader.
He also began to get even more specific with his setups. For instance, multi-day breakouts were good for him, so he began to break the breakouts down even further. In doing so, he earned that he was better at OTC breakouts which trend a lot better versus NASDAQ breakouts. In this way, he was able to get super focused on what works for him and improve his average.
You’ll also learn his specific methodology, how he makes a plan for entry and exit, what catalysts he trusts the most, and how he considers his risk/reward ratio and how he chooses how much to spend. As he wisely puts it, “You have to find what works for you, then focus on what’s working.”
Papa John answers your questions!
In the episode, Papa John also answers some rapid-fire questions from Stephen, some of which are from Twitter members/listeners. You’ll learn plenty, including what he does for a day job, what his biggest single loss was, how he kept going after losing so much money, and whether or not he named himself after the pizza chain (spoiler: no).
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