I have a confession to make. I get bored very easily. All my life, I have had a passion for trying new things. As a child I tried Judo, tennis, swimming, skiing, canoeing, played the piano, drums, baritone, guitar… I grew up and started boxing, I tried MMA and power lifting. I have dived, skydived, ski toured, wakeboarded, jet skied, waterskied… the list goes on.
I call this having a lust for life and trying to find myself. How are we supposed to know what truly makes us tick unless we get to experience a range of things? When you apply a personality like mine to saving/personal finance you get an interesting mix. I have a Masters degree in engineering, so have a very logical mind. I make most of my decisions systematically and base them on numbers. Combine this with the hyperactive adventure-seeker side of me and you sometimes get conflict. I understand the reasons to save for retirement… but there is no way I will miss out on going on a holiday and miss the opportunity to dive ski/board so that I can have an extra £5000 in my retirement fund. It just doesn’t work like that for me!
More recently, I have started to get bored with leaving my savings in a stagnant ISA. The logical side of my head says that the banks are taking advantage of me – they are giving me 3% interest on money they are lending out to others at 7%. Sure, saving is the conventional thing to do, but it is not what I want to do. I want to be more proactive in researching foreign markets and experience the excitement of making my own decisions.
Recently, I have found that currency trading (or commonly known as Forex trading) is as adrenaline-inducing as the stock market. If you don’t know what currency trading is then fear not… I shall explain.
Currency trading is pretty self-explanatory; you essentially buy one currency (for example US dollar) while selling another (say, euro) at an agreed exchange price on the over the counter market. When you trade forex you are effectively speculating on the movement of one country’s currency against another. Forex trading has proven to be a highly lucrative passive income stream for a lot of people. You can imagine how much the following story excited me:
The Man Who Made $1Billion in a Day’s Work
A gentleman called George Soros (chairman of Soros fund management) made $1bn profit on a day known as Black Wednesday (16th September 1992). Essentially, the British pound had to be withdrawn from the European Exchange Rate Mechanism on this day after it dropped below the agreed limit. George Soros subsequently used a technique called short selling where he made a currency trade with the intention of buying back the pound at a lower rate.
Long Term Strategy
You don’t need to be a genius to work out which countries’ economies have the potential to grow and develop over the coming years. Forex can be a great investment strategy for those who are prepared to be in it for the long game. To put this into perspective, I remember when I first went on holiday to Thailand in 2009; I got an exchange rate of about 55 Thai Baht to the pound. When we got married in Thailand this year, we were lucky to get 48 Baht. Now I am no Forex expert, but I think it is pretty obvious to see what is happening here…
What are your thoughts? Do you share my values in living for your passion and ensuring that there is excitement? Would you prefer that fun holiday or the extra money for retirement? Discuss..