My First Ever Trade – What Stock Did I Pick?

I was always fascinated by trading.

In fact, I started trading in High School.

It was 1989 – 32 years ago, and as you might know, I grew up in Germany.

Back then, there weren’t any online brokerages.

If you wanted to buy a stock, you had to do it through a bank.

So I went to Deutsche Bank, ready to open a trading account with ALL of my disposable income: 50 Deutschmark. That’s the equivalent of $50.

And here’s how I selected a stock:

I asked my banker: “What stock can I buy for 50 Deutschmark?”

Great way to select a stock, isn’t it? :-p

Anyhow, so I bought ONE share of VW – Volkswagen.

Here it is:

And I was the proud owner of ONE share!

I was excited.

The next day I went to school, and during the first recess break, I ran to a payphone.

Keep in mind that it was 1989, and we didn’t have cell phones or online quotes.

Anyhow, so I ran to the pay phone, inserted 20 cents, called my banker, and asked “How’s my stock doing?”

He said: “It’s now trading at 50 Deutschmark and 20 cents.”

Wow, how exciting! I was making money!

So during the second recess break, I ran again to a payphone, inserted my 20 cents, called my banker, and asked: “How are we doing?”

He said we’re now up 35 cents! Awesome!

As soon as I got home from school, I went to our phone at home. It was a rotary phone – remember these things?

I called the banker again and asked: “So , how did we do today?”

He said that my stock closed at 50 Deutschmark and 50 cents – I am making money!

The next day, I did the same thing:

I called my banker during the first recess break, the second recess break, and as soon as I got home.

On the third day and my 7th call to the banker, he said: “Markus, out of curiosity: How much money do you want to make with this trade?”

I thought about it for a minute, and then I said: “I would like to make 10 Deutschmark on this trade.”

Because based on the stock price of 50 Deutschmark, that would be 20%” – so yes, “I would like to make 10 Deutschmark.”

He said: “Done deal! Come to my office tomorrow and I’ll give you the 10 Deutschmark – but stop calling me!” 

So that was my first trade, and it was a profitable trade! :-))

But I realized that THIS was not a sustainable trading strategy. I also realized that my account was heavily underfunded.

So I did what my parents told me all along: go to college and get a “real” job – and that’s what happened: I went to college and started working for IBM. 

It’s quite a story how I went from working 80 hours/week at IBM to moving all the way from Munich in Germany to Austin, TX to become a trader!

We will save that story another day.

In the meantime, feel free to check out THIS video in which I show you how I trade these days – and NO, I’m no longer calling brokers until they pay me to stop calling them 😛

Here’s the video:

Talk soon,

  • Markus


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