Successful Forex Traders And Other Rags To Riches Stories

forex trading success stories and trading tips
I will admit that I really wanted to do an article about successful Forex traders and their stories but finding them online was virtually impossible.

Even the currency traders that defined themselves as real millionaires could not back that up with any audited statement of their trading account.

A quick note on “millionaire trader” claims. One prominent trader posts pictures of fancy cars and vacation. The issue is that most of his money is made from selling courses, not trading.

Is that to say there are no success stories about trading Forex?


There are claims but in the end it depends on what you define as successful.

Do you need to make millions to be a successful FX trader or is being able to pay the bills and have money left over for the finer things in life enough for you?

I can say this though, successful Forex traders or any trader for that matter that has success, has much in common with others who are successful.

There is probably a very good reason why you have not obtained any level of trading success that you can be proud of.  It could be anything from not having an edge to simply being under-capitalized.

Whatever the reason is for you, you can start by adopting the habits taken from the true stories of traders who are successful.


Successful Trading Stories Start By Doing Things Differently

We are all built the same.  It’s what we do with what we have that will make your story one of success or one of failure.  The successful traders you emulate are in line with what I have written for you below.


Why Do You Trade?

This is the probably the most defining factor of success.  What is your motive?  Is it for the thrill?  Is it to be right?  Is it because you love the challenge?  Whatever your reason is for trading, be very clear on why you open the charts every day.  Having a very in depth “why” behind your trading can keep you on track when the going gets tough (or so good you want to double your position size).  Make it your mission statement.


Define Your Trading Edge

What is it that makes you have a positive expectancy trading method?  Can you explain why your method of trading should produce positive returns?  If you are unable to define what your edge is, then you do not have one.  The people who make money (sometime a lot of money) know exactly what their edge is and why it should give them positive returns over time.


Are You Your Own Thinker?

In most interviews of proven successful traders, they will tell you that they are independent thinkers.  They don’t look to Twitter, the trading forums, they don’t phone a friend….everything they do if from their own opinions and fall in line with their trading edge.  They understand they don’t know the motives or techniques of other traders so to follow blindly is simply a recipe for disaster.


Be Confident In Your Trading Edge and Ability

You will never see anybody that’s at the peak of their game being tentative when they do what they do.  They understand what they DON’T know but act swiftly on the things they do know.  They trust themselves and their ability to make the needed decisions in accordance with their trading plan.  If you lack confidence, you will lack the ability to execute either to enter a trade, stop out of a loser or take your profits when the market shows you the exit.


They Understand Losing Traders Are A Part Of Doing Business

Interesting enough, I had read an interview where the trader said he never takes a loss or a win.  He simply takes the outcome of his trading edge and moves onto the next.  What a great way to think!  We will never know with 100% certainty whether our next trade will win or lose.  All we can do is apply our edge when the time is right and let the random distribution of wins and losses play out over time.  That is it.


They Don’t Trade With Scared Money

This simply means that the money they have put up for the position is money that if the lose, will not prevent them from paying the bills.  They don’t NEED to win because they know that is fruitless.  They don’t need to not NOT lose because that is fruitless as well.  Any loss will not change their decrease their lifestyle as a win will not increase it either.  Desperation will reward you with losing your account.


Hard Times Is A Time For Growth

Success is never a straight line.  While there may be the outlier, most people will have a two steps forward one step back journey to success.  During the times of struggle are the times the discipline to stick to your proven edge will become effort.  In adversity strength is born and if you can walk through the fire as many times as you must by not getting burnt (a blown out account), you have much better odds of reaching the success you seek.



Real Millionaire Trader Stories

Now, I got to admit, this is not the classic rag-to-riches story but on the other hand, when you think about it, it is, when you compare how much each trader is now worth compared to when they were just starting out to build their wealth.

So in that sense, these are Rags-to-Riches story of how ordinary people became billionaire (millionaire) traders.

And like most people, many of you will quickly assume that:

  • They may have had a  lot of money in the bank to start with in the first place
  • They head good start in life… maybe they were born into rich families…

The truth is:

  • A few of them grew up in middle class families and some of them did not.
  • Most of them did not start trading with a lot of money.
  • They even had some funny jobs in the first place to start with
  • One trader was actually a  New York Taxi Cab Driver before becoming rich…as in billionaire rich

A lot of these  millionaire/billionaire traders did not rise all the way to the top. It took some years of hard work and persistence. Some even considered giving up trading altogether after either wiping out their trading accounts or almost losing most of it.

These traders definitely put in the hard work.

If there’s anything the learn from these amazing traders, this would be it: you can turn a small amount of money into millions (or at the very least make a darn good living).

Even if you don’t reach the level of these traders, do your best to make your own trading success story by hitting your goals.



Bill Lipschutz

Bill Lipschutz


This is one man who would be very thankful to have had lovely grandmother. But on the other side  is a bit funny too…Imagine spending 5 years of your life studying at university for  a degree and then leaving the degree collecting dust on the shelf and now you are doing something entirely different from what you studied for?

Wouldn’t that be crazy? Well, not really according this this story. You see, if that man above had taken the path of his degree, he wouldn’t be a billionaire today.

Who is this man? Well, Bill Lipschutz is your man!

You see, Bill Lipschutz was studying to be an architecture in Cornell University when his grandmother died leaving him a portfolio of shares of around $12,000.  Bill sold all of it and used this money as his risk capital to start trading the stock market whilst he was still a student.

He started trading the stock market using this money and years later when he started working for Salomon Brothers, he started trading the Forex market.

But here’s the thing, Bill Lipschutz eventually graduated, not with one degree but two degrees.


Well, he got his architectural degree but he also ended up studying a lot of business courses and ended up getting and M.B.A. The thing was, he never practiced as an architect. It was his second degree that paved his way to secure a job with Salomon Brothers.

Bill Lipschutz said that he never remember making a decision to be a trader.

The thing was he did not want to be an architect. It was a gradual process until trading literally took over his life.

What happened to the $12,000 trading account? 

Well, he increased it to $250,000 in 4-5 years. But a bad trading decision he made cost him dearly. That $250,000 account which  took 4-5 years to build up was blown up in a couple of days . That huge loss was a very important learning experience for him.

There is no clear information of what Bill Lipschutz net worth is currently but I wouldn’t be surprised it would be up there in the hundreds of millions of dollars.

Bill Lipschutz is also reputed to have made $6 million dollars in 6 hours trading the New Zealand Dollar in September 1985 with one of his co-workers/trader.

In other spectacular trade, he made $20 million trading the Japanese yen in 1987.

Also there was on trade in 1988 where where where was short on D-Mark  by $3 billion (The official currency of Germany until it adopted the euro in 2002. D-mark is an abbreviation of Deutsche Mark).

He was caught out (on the wrong side) and with no liquidity during the New York Trading Session when the Dollar started increasing against the D-Mark and  he couldn’t bail out of his large short position and when price went up by 1%, he was in deep freaking trouble.

To put this in perspective: one percent of $3billion is $30million. So Bill Lipschutz was staring at a $30million loss in just 8minutes! At one point during that trading session, that loss started to increase and he was staring at a $90 million loss.  Eventually he managed to close off this trade with an $18million loss for the day during the Tokyo Session came and the dollar started sliding down.

Compared to the $90 million loss, that $18 million loss seemed like a winner.

This was a guy that was trading huge contracts that sometimes moving the currency markets just by his huge orders.

What’s the lesson here?: there are many people in this life that end up going to universities just to get educated and get a degree and then don’t even end up doing the jobs that they were educated for. And there may be many reason for that. But here’s the thing: if its not in your heart, you won’t last long.  Sometimes it may take a while before someone finally figures out what he want to do in life.

 Bill Lipschultz‘s net worth is unknown but here’s what Wikipedia had to say about how much he was making whilst working for Salomon’s Brothers:

He was considered to be amongst the top five of all Forex traders worldwide. By 1985, Lipschutz was making $300 million per year for Salomon Brothers.


I can’t find a picture of this guy! Honestly! So if you find a picture, please let me know.

I bet you’ve never heard of this millionaire trader. And maybe its for a good reason because this guy likes to maintain a low profile (that’s why I can find a picture). But here’s the thing: If there’s any futures trader who can take $2000 and turn it into a millions, Randy McKay would be the one.

An excerpt in The New Market Wizards by Jack Schwager, from Randy McKay:

“In 1970, I returned from a tour in Vietnam. Since I didn’t finish school before I left for Vietnam, I needed a job that would allow me to go to school at the same time. My brother, Terry, was a floor broker on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. He got me a job as a runner on the floor, which allowed me to work in the morning, attend school in the afternoon, and study in the evening.

I worked as a runner for a couple of years with absolutely no intention of getting into this business. I was studying to be a clinical psychologist. Just as I was finishing college, in 1972, the CME launched a subdivision, the International Monetary Market to trade currencies. When the exchange started the IMM division, they sold seats for only $10,000 in an effort to try to get bodies into these new trading pits and gave away free seats to all existing members.

As a member, my brother had no particular need for this seat at the asked me if I’d like to use it in the interim. He gave me the use of the seat and lent me $5,000. I put $3,000 in the bank to pay my living expenses, and used the $2,000 for my trading account.”

In the first seven months of trading, he turned that $2,000 into $70,000. And each year he continued to make more money than the previous year. And he was trading in the trading floors at that time.

Then one day he decided to leave the trading floors and start trading from home. By his second year from trading from home, he made his first $1 million.

And tell you what? He continued to increase his trading account  every year until 1986 when he suffered his first trading loss for the year.

If there’s anybody who would get a medal  for consistency in trading, it would be Randy Mckay. Its been reported that Randy Mckay has been profitable for his own trading account 18 out of 20 years.

Not much is known about Randy Mckay’s net worth but one thing is for sure: it won’t be under $10million.

What the lesson here? Well, you can turn $2,000 trading account into $70,000 if you are consistent like cutting your losses and making more than you lose.


George Soros

George Soros

If there was one trader who was born at the wrong place at the wrong time, but somehow ended up being the 29th richest person in the world with a new worth $24.2 billion as of April 2015 according to Forbes.

I don’t think there is any trader out there that can break the record of this man who made more than $1 billion dollars in profit in one single day!

That guy is called George Soros.

Here is a his brief story:

  • He was born in 1930 in Budapest and survived the Nazi occupation of Hungary during World War II. Seriously, those bloody Nazis could have killed him!
  • Anyway, he left the war torn Budapest and managed to make his way to England and Graduated in London School of Economics in 1952.
  • In 1956, he emigrated to USA and later he took a job working as a financial analyst and trader in New York.
  • In September of 1992, George Soros risked $10 billion on a single currency speculation when he shorted the British pound.
  • His bet was right, and in a single day the trade generated a profit of $1 billion – ultimately, it was reported that his profit on the transaction almost reached $2 billion.
  • Because of this he is often referred to as “the man who broke the Bank of England.”

What made George Soros so successful in taking large bets like that that made him billions?

Well,  here’s your answer:

  • George Soros was a master at translating broad-brush economic trends into highly leveraged, killer plays in bonds and currencies.
  • As an investor, Soros was a short-term speculator, making huge bets on the directions of financial markets.
  • He believed that financial markets can best be described as chaotic.
  • The prices of securities and currencies depend on human beings, or the traders – both professional and non-professional – who buy and sell these assets. These persons often act out based on emotion, rather than logical considerations.
  • He also believed that market participants influenced one another and moved in herds.
  • He said that most of the time he moved with the herd, but always watched for an opportunity to get out in front and “make a killing.”

How could he tell when the time was right?

Soros has said that he would have an instinctive physical reaction about when to buy and sell, making is strategy a difficult model to emulate.

So if you think there is a trading strategy that George Soros uses and you’ve been searching for it the forget it!  What’s the lesson here?:

  • It does not matter what country or what conditions you faced in life as a child growing up.
  • If you have a little bit of decent education and saw an opportunity to make money of that knowledge and you work hard, you’d get somewhere, just like George Soros did.


Ed Seykota

Ed Seykota

Now, not much is known about how much this guy shown above net worth is but it should be in the multi millions I believe.

His name is Ed Seykota.

He is a commodities trader, who earned S.B. degrees in Electrical Engineering from MIT and Management from the MIT Sloan School of Management, both in 1969.  He is reported to be the first to conceive and develop the first commercial computerized trading systems.

You make rightfully call him the computer nerd who became a multi-million dollar trader.

Not much is currently know about is net worth but if rumors are true, he certainly deserves to be called a trading success story.

What’s the lesson here? Computers can do your trading. You just have to find the right system and code it and watch it churn in billions! (just kidding). But on a serious note, yes, you can make money by using computer programs which trade on your behalf but the important thing in my opinion is to use the right trading method that works in a given currency pair.

Ed is still active today in what is called The Trading Tribe.  Ed is a firm believer that emotions and knowing yourself is the cornerstone of a successful trading career.


If you are a taxi driver and and thought you can never become a  billionaire, well, you should be motivated to know that there was once a person like who driving taxis to make a living and his net

Bruce Kovner

Bruce Kovner

worth is now  $5 Billion according to Forbes April 2015!

And just to think that there are some people alive today that have been taxied around by this billionaire trader? Well…he wasn’t actually a billionaire back then but  he was a taxi driver.

He had some turbulent childhood as well and it must be tough for him as His mother committed suicide.

He started trading with $3,000 and used that to trade the soybeans futures contract and that trade saw him made a paper profit of  $40,000 and then when his profits started to drop, he bailed out with only $23,000. He panicked and sold it. He said that the was a good lesson for him in risk management.

Who is this man? It’s Bruce Kovner.

As of Feb 2017, Bruce Kovner’s Net Worth is $5 Billion. Not bad for a former taxi driver.

What’s the lesson here? Well, it does not matter what kind of job you are doing right now. Give a shot a trading. You never know where you will end up in the end. Your past career/job does not determine who you will be in the future.


warren buffett

Warren Buffet

From an early age, he showed great interest in making and saving money…and that later translated to making him billions and many millions of dollars to many of those investors that invested with his company. You probably won’t recognize him from his childhood photos with his two sisters above. But you know what?

His net worth now is $73.6 Billion as of Feb 2017 according for Forbes.

That kid above, who is now a insanely rich old man today is Warren Buffet!

Here’s an excerpt from Forbes:

Warren Buffett is wealthier than ever thanks to the stellar performance of his diversified holding company, Berkshire Hathaway. Its coveted Class A stock, which is the most expensive of any public U.S. company, eclipsed $200,000 per share for the first time in August 2014. Buffett moved to 3rd richest on Forbes’ 2015 list of the world’s richest, up 4th richest in 2014.

With dozens of subsidiaries, including in railroads, insurance and energy, Berkshire Hathaway posted $182 billion in 2013 revenue and $19.5 billion in net income. Still inking big deals, Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway bought battery maker Duracell from Procter & Gamble in November 2014 for $4.7 billion.

A generous philanthropist, he bested his own giving record in July 2014, giving away Berkshire shares worth $2.8 billion, primarily to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation but also to his children’s foundations, bringing his lifetime giving to nearly $23 billion.

Buffett says his best ever investment was buying Benjamin Graham’s book “The Intelligent Investor” in 1949. He later studied under Graham before moving home to Nebraska and acquiring a struggling textiles company in 1962, Berkshire Hathaway. In early February 2015, it was the fourth most valuable public company in the U.S. with a market capitalization of $355 billion.


Paul Tudor Jones

Paul Tudor Jones

He currently has a net worth of $4.7 Billion as of Feb 2017 according to Forbes. He was born in Memphis, Tennessee.  He finished high school and went on to University of Virginia, earning an undergraduate degree in economics in 1976 as well as his college welterweight boxing championship. 

In 1976, he started working on the trading floors as a clerk.  Then later he became a broker. In 1980, he went strictly on his own for two and a half profitable years, before he “really got bored”.

I mean, seriously? Did he got bored making money?

Anyway…as the story goes: out of his boredom, he wanted to try something different: he then applied to Harvard Business School, was accepted, and was packed up and ready to go when he thought to himself: “this is crazy, because for what I’m doing here, they’re not going to teach me anything like this in Harvard. This skill set is not something that they teach in business school.”

How right he was! Who is this guy? Its Paul Tudor Jones.

He was advised to go down to New Orleans to talk with commodity broker Eli Tullis, who hired and then mentored him in trading cotton futures at the New York Cotton Exchange. And this is what  Jones later said:

“Eli Tullis was the toughest son of a bitch I ever knew. He taught me that trading is very competitive and you have to be able to handle getting your butt kicked. No matter how you cut it, there are enormous emotional ups and downs involved.”

That was just the beginning. Years later, he was a billionaire trader. What a story!


John Paulson

John Paulson

This guy’s net worth is $11.2 Billion as of April 2015 according to Forbes.  He really  came from humble beginnings.

Some people make a fortune in crisis. As a matter of fact, times of crises present great opportunities for wealth creation…that is, if you are prepared for it.  This guy was definitely prepared. This guy made $3.7 billion during the 2007 Mortgage Crisis.

He is John Paulson.

His prominence and fortune were made in 2007 when he earned $3.7 billion personally and was transformed “from an obscure money manager into a financial legend” by using credit default swaps to effectively bet against the U.S. subprime mortgage lending market. In 2011, Paulson earned “$4.9 billion” according to Business Insider.

How did he make his fortune in 2007?  

Here’s how: he made a bet on the sub-prime mortgage crash in 2007 by betting against four out of the five biggest British Banks, many called it the greatest trade ever made. It made him a billionaire, making $3.7bn in a single year

Somebody else misfortune became his fortune.


This trader played poker as a high school kid. In fact, he said that playing poker taught him a good lesson about taking risks. Risks can kill you or make you wealthy and for his case, it made him

Steven Cohen

Steven Cohen

very rich.

Who is this guy? Its Steven Cohen.

He opened up his first brokerage account with $1,000 of his own tuition money. At 22 he got a job as a junior trader for Gruntal & Co and on his first day he made $8,000. That was pretty much the star of his rise to become one of the world’s billionaire traders.

Guess what his net worth is? Stephen Cohen’s net worth is $13 Billion as of Feb 2017 according to Forbes.

I bet there aren’t many former poker players worth as much as this guys is! Good on him!


Edward Lampert

Edward Lampert

There are many stories of grandmothers wrong influence on children. And this guy is not exception. In fact, his grandmother is to be blamed for this guy’s net worth as of Feb 2017 is $1.96 Billion!

You see, his grandmother was a passive investor and big fan of Louis Rukeyser’s Wall Street Week television program. She instilled in him an interest in investing. His mother would later recall that young boy would sit with his grandmother reviewing and evaluating the performance of her stock picks in the daily newspaper.

And that’s how Edward Lampert got hooked in trading as they say: “the rest is history.”

So listen, mums and dads, its better to have your kids around granmas and granpas who can instill them an interest in investing. It may not only be  in the areas of investing but in other areas in the life of you children to become respectable and successful men and women when they grow up.


Kenneth Griffin

Kenneth Griffin

This guys net worth is $7.7  billion according to Forbes in Feb 2017. Who is he?  Ken Griffin.

This is what Wikipedia has to say about this man:

In 1986, Griffin started to invest during his freshman year at Harvard University after reading a Forbes magazine article. During his second year at Harvard, he started a hedge fund focused on convertible bond arbitrage.

The fund was capitalized with $265,000 from friends and family, including money from his grandmother.He installed a satellite link to his dorm to acquire real-time market data. The investment strategy helped preserve capital during the stock market crash of 1987.

Griffin’s early success enabled him to launch a second fund, and between the two funds he was managing just over $1 million.Griffin graduated from Harvard in 1989 with a degree in economics.

Those were the beginnings to making billions years later.


Stanley Druckenmiller

Stanley Druckenmiller

This guy’s net worth as of Feb 2017 according to Forbes is $4.7 Billion. He is Stanley Druckenmiller.

This is what Wikipedia had to say about him:

He grew up in a middle-class household in the suburbs of Philadelphia. His parents divorced when he was in elementary school and he went to live with his father in Gibbstown, New Jersey and then in Richmond, Virginia (his sisters, Helen and Salley, would stay with their mother in Philadelphia).

Druckenmiller is a graduate of Collegiate School, Richmond, Virginia. In 1975, he received a BA in English and economics from Bowdoin College (where he opened a hot dog stand with Lawrence B. Lindsey, who later became economic policy adviser to President George W. Bush).

He dropped out of a three-year Ph.D. program in economics at the University of Michigan in the middle of the second semester to accept a position as an oil analyst for Pittsburgh National Bank.

In 1988, he was hired by George Soros to his Quantum Fund. He and Soros famously “broke the Bank of England” when they shorted British pound sterling in 1992, reputedly making more than $1 billion in profits. They reasoned out  that the Bank of England did not have enough foreign currency reserves with which to buy enough sterling to prop up the currency and that raising interest rates would be politically unsustainable

Here’s what Forbes had to say about him:

Famed investor Stan Druckenmiller was George Soros’ main man when together they “broke the Bank of England,” earning a $1 billion profit by shorting the pound in 1992.

Born in a middle class home in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Druckenmiller attended Bowdoin College and pursued a PhD at the University of Michigan.

He eventually dropped out and went to work for Pittsburgh National Bank. After becoming head of equity research, Druckenmiller left to launch the legendary Duquesne Capital Management, a hedge fund he ran until 2010, when he reconverted it into a family office. While running Duquesne, Druckenmiller had stints at Dreyfus and with George Soros

I hope these real trading success stories from those who are real millionaires (and billionaires) are enough to get you excited that you CAN DO THIS.

Just go through my list of 7 way successful traders approach trading and make sure you take it to heart


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