How do you teach the seemingly unteachable? That’s a question Warrior Trading’s Ross Cameron has asked himself again and again. A wildly successful day trader himself, nearly a decade ago Cameron found in himself a desire to pass on his knowledge to others — to share his passion of chasing down the markets. Here’s what led Ross Cameron to teach trading, and how he teaches aspiring traders.
“I really enjoy teaching,” said Cameron in an interview earlier this year. “You could say teaching is in my blood.”
Turns out, Ross Cameron is the third generation in his family to teach. His grandparents, his parents, and even his aunt and uncle worked in the school system.
“It comes naturally to me,” said Cameron.
The Warrior Trading Way Starts With an Anatomy Lesson
The way he teaches trading is to try to make concepts very easy to understand. Initially, he focuses on simple concepts, like: What is a stock? What are the characteristics of a stock worth trading? What should a price chart look like?
“I start with laying a very simple foundation and trying to keep it simple. The idea is that as people start to gain interest, and as they start to feel invested in learning more, they start filling in all sorts of the details around these simple core concepts — but the concepts themselves are fairly simple,” said Warrior Trading’s Cameron.
Ross Cameron starts talking with his students about imbalances between a stock’s supply and demand. He explains what creates demand — for instance, breaking news about a company.
“Then I start introducing the role in trading of emotion — fear, greed, excitement, things like that,” said Cameron, explaining that often FOMO — the fear of missing out — can create demand in a stock, while on the supply side of the equation is the number of shares available to trade. “So, we can see these moments of extreme imbalances between supply and demand. That’s volatility. And volatility is an opportunity. Learning to trade really starts with understanding the anatomy of those moments of opportunity.”
Once students understand the anatomy of stocks and tradable moments, Ross Cameron then starts discussing where and when he buys and sells, and how he manages risk.
“Teaching trading starts by being very simple, because you need to be able to make it intuitive to the student,” explained Cameron.
At the next level up, Cameron layers in some of the more nuanced — but incredibly important — elements of “tape reading” (the ability to look at price movements without checking a chart).
“These skills help new traders get a real sense of the flow of the market.”
Ross Cameron admits he is the type of person who learned by putting things together himself and getting his feet wet in the trading pool.
“I like to give my students the opportunity to trade in a simulator, so they can start practicing right away,” he said, explaining that he has had students who’ve made and lost over a billion dollars in the simulator because they do “crazy things.”
“A trading simulator is a tool for students to use and experiment with. It’s a safe place to start experiencing some of the art and science of trading and applying some of the things that they’ve been learning in the classes,” Warrior Trading’s Cameron said.
Ross Cameron Explains What It Takes To Be a Successful Day Trader
In order to be successful, Cameron said it’s critical to know the market and trading fundamentals.
“It’s a shame to say, but not everyone can learn the concepts to trade,” he said. “There are some complex things to really understand. You do require a basic intelligence and aptitude, even just to start. It doesn’t mean you need to be a college graduate, but you need to be a critical thinker. You need to be a bit of a problem solver.”
The trading simulator, said Cameron, is a perfect venue for helping people understand whether they have what it takes — without losing their shirt.
Cameron said traders often have a more independent personality than the average person. Often, they’re people who like solving puzzles.
“Trading is a bit of a puzzle,” said Cameron.
There’s also an emotional disposition — the psychology of trading.
“The emotional disposition really is the biggest challenge for every trader I’ve ever known — including me,” said Warrior Trading’s Cameron. “You can know all the textbook stuff about trading, and then you find yourself in the heat of the moment, throwing it all out the window and making emotionally impulsive decisions. You might be telling yourself you’re making a decision based on intuition and experience, but actually you could be trading based on an emotional response to — for instance — having just experienced a loss, frustration, or anger. And suddenly you can start snowballing.”
Teaching Trading Also Means Teaching Introspection, Says Ross Cameron
Part of teaching trading, said Cameron, is helping people learn about themselves.
“One of the things that people don’t expect is that trading is going to force you to really look at yourself in the mirror — to understand your ability to have self-control, to be disciplined, and to develop a real sense of awareness of checking in with yourself every day,” said Cameron. “Am I good to trade today? Am I really at peak performance today? Am I checking in with the market? Is the market good for me today? Does it suit the strategies that I trade? These are the questions you need to ask yourself at the start of every single day you sit down to trade.”
And that’s what Ross Cameron himself does every day.
“Every morning when I sit down, I ask myself: Did you eat well? Did you just sleep well? Do you have a couple of stocks that you like? And if you do, what’s the condition of the overall market? Has it been hot? Has it been weak?”
For instance, right now we’re in a bear market.
“We’ve been in a bear market for over a year, and I still managed to have a great year last year. But it was really entirely because of my ability to restrain myself and slow down to trade the market that I met, not the market that I wanted to be trading in,” said Warrior Trading’s Cameron. “We all want to hit a home run every day, where we make a ton of money. But that’s not reality. So you can either choose to accept the current reality, or choose to fight it. And people that fight it dig themselves into big holes.”
Teaching these concepts can be difficult, Ross Cameron admits.
“But it’s incredibly satisfying when you see your students trade well,” he stated. “And that’s why I love to teach trading.”