Tim Sykes was just a senior in high school in 1999 when he received a bar mitzvah gift of $12,415. He took his birthday money and began trading penny stocks. His parents assumed that he was going to lose all the money but supported him anyways thinking it would be a good life lesson. Sykes says:
“I didn’t really grow the account at first since I was invested in these bigger companies, so I gravitated towards lower-price penny stocks, which the whole world hates. But my $12,415 basically grew to over $100,000 by the end of high school.”
By freshman year of college, Sykes had made $700,000. He made his first million at 21 while vacationing on a cruise ship with his family. By his senior year, Sykes had become a multimillionaire.
“I studied stocks nonstop from the first day. I ditched friends. Even in college, I took night classes so that I could study and learn during the day. The education never stops.”
Sykes, now 34, has made $4.3 million in career stock winnings and has roughly $15 million in cash in the bank. His current full-time job is running a training program to teach others how to trade stocks.
“I’ve started back with $12,415 when I first started teaching in 2007. I took that money and turned it into $230,000 in three years. I was the number one trader on Covestor, which tracks people’s trades via their brokerage accounts. This year, 2016, I’ve gone back to $12,000 again, and the overall stock markets are down roughly 10 percent in the first few weeks. I’m up about 20 percent.”
Since he’s now trading with such small accounts, Sykes says he presently makes more money teaching than trading.
“I’m proud of the fact that I make more from teaching, because you know where my priorities are. For me, if my subscribers lose money, they’ll cancel on me. For me, it’s always about trying to teach subscribers how to make money.”
Sykes broke down the general principles of how he trades:
“You definitely trade different in each market. Three out of four stocks follow the market. So in a bear market, or when stock market prices are falling, I’m much more cautious. But at the same time, there’s usually a few plays every single day.
“There’s pump and dumps — where owners of a stock pump up prices with false claims and then dump it when it gains value — I like to bet against those. Did you see the ‘Wolf of Wall Street’? That still happens! Except I’m not the wolf — I teach! But I’m thankful for those wolves because they open up opportunities. Even though they’re scams and manipulations, you can never shut that down. What you have to do is accept that and educate the public. So what I try is teach people how to bet against these scams and to recognize whenever there is a pump and dump.”
Sykes says he has had multiple students who’ve made millions, including one named Michael Goode. Goode started off as a Sykes critic and wrote a scathing blog post titled “Timothy Sykes is Full of Bullship.”
“He became my first millionaire student. Now he moderates my chat rooms and helps me teach other students. I love haters because I can turn them into fans.”
originally published on Nextshark