Are Forex Trading Courses worth taking?

Forex Trading Courses have proliferated across the Internet, there are even well-financed academies that have national radio spots promoting them.  There are plenty of self-proclaimed and frequently cited gurus in the Forex Industry and some of them offer courses on how to trade currencies, commodities, CFDs and stocks.  Some of the gurus offer courses and money management services.  Are Forex Trading Courses really worth it?

You might be wondering… what do these courses typically entail?

The Types of Forex Trading Courses

The In-Person Seminar Experience

Enrolling in a Forex Trading Course is typically more expensive should you opt to take courses that have any sort of an in-person atmosphere during the sales or servicing process.  They will be presented as seminars or workshops, sometimes they are featured along with the digitally accessible materials as well.

Often, most of these currency trading courses will use in-person seminars to be held for a half-day at a Hotel Meeting Room that has a rather large capacity.  You may see them promote in your local area at a 4 star Hotel and that they will be in your city to pass along knowledge to you, for free!  How generous of these companies to rack up huge bills with large hotel chains to give away valuable information and let you consume as many cookies and as much coffee or tea that you wish!

The truth is…

These in-person seminars are half-informational, half-sales as they look to use consultative selling techniques to get you to sign up for their courses.  Given that they rack up expenses, there have to be revenues to exceed them and they come from YOU.  It’s a common business model for many financial and real estate training services.  They will charge you on a per-level basis and not teach everything all at once in one particular course.

They will provide some useful information, but they can be dogmatic and may even insist upon particular terminals to trade, which may limit your broker options.

One large trading course provider even has franchisees for different territories.  They train the franchisees to run the local operation to convert to sales.

How much do these courses go for?  In total, they could cost $20,000 or more.

Is it worth the investment?  Probably not.  In fact, there are many leaked YouTube videos of these companies’ courses and people have already created indicators and Expert Advisors following their methods.  Throw in that they give away their methods for free in other sources of media, it is better to just get it all for free.

Consider that if they were such great traders wouldn’t they be having their own Investment Fund rather than making people go through hoops to get information that would be readily available in a Google search?  They are just really good at the sales funnel and they are teaching people to manually trade, which has problematic aspects.

Want to know about the more affordable options?  Of course you do!

Online Forex Trading Courses

These Forex Trading Courses are a dime-a-dozen and it is hard to know necessarily what is good and what is not.  There are a small minority of Forex Trading Courses who will actually teach you how to code and build automated, algorithmic trading programs.  However, the majority will teach you how to trade manually and you will just have to figure it out yourself whether the strategies learned really work with backtested results.

How do they hook you in for their services?

Well, they cannot engage in “consultative selling” like the seminar marketers, but they are aggressive bloggers, podcasters and social media users.  They will provide a lot of useful information, but they will not show all of their cards and to be able to get that benefit of all of the knowledge, it requires money.  It’s a far more honest method of sales than the level-by-level process that never seems to have an end like the seminar marketers.

The costs entailed are far less for these courses could be anywhere from $199 to several thousands of dollars, some offer subscription models and include software as a benefit to their services.

Are they worth it?  Probably not.

Once again, there are plenty of resources to learn about trading for free on the Internet.  Why are they teaching trading methodology?  Just think about that one.  Learning how to code and build algorithmic trading software has benefits and inexpensive courses that can teach these skills may be worth it.

Also consider how much you are planning to invest.  If you are trading $100 in the Forex Market, you are doomed and hopeless.  However, if you are putting more money into the education aspect than the investment aspect, you are making a big mistake.

Algorithmic and Automated is the Present and Future of Forex Trading

Is human intervention necessary with automated trading?  Absolutely.  Neural networks will not necessarily have all the information it needs to process decisions that result in profitability.  However, reducing the human element to trading is a good thing for investors and traders as subjectivity and psychology are largely removed from the picture.

In 2008, this was what UBS’ trading floor in Stamford, Connecticut looked like.

In 2016, my how things have changed so drastically.

Most trades are being executed by automated trading software programs.  High Frequency Trading through triangular and latency arbitrage is performed by software and powerful servers ensuring the execution.  Retail Forex Traders are usually engaging in manual trading, but they are on the outside looking in as the institutions and the best retail traders do not place manual trades.  Welcome to the Era of the Quant Jock.

16% of trades in the equities market are placed by humans.

Why learn how to trade Forex and Commodities from Forex Trading Courses that are teaching manual methods that require lots of screen time?

An example of human and algorithmic trading going hand-in-hand would be…

The creation of Signal Portfolios that Freevestor helps clients create.  Traders make the human decision to put together the portfolio with their sub-accountst.  The portfolio is adjusted accordingly over time to fit their goals and if it meets or exceeds portfolio benchmarks.  There is a balance of human activity and automated trading here, but it allows investors to re-define their definition of active investing.

With Seminar and Online Forex Trading Courses there is usually no room for innovation and embracing the future.  It is stuck in the past and the future of trading in general is actually the Software Development Life Cycle.