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Options hype artists and their victims

Looking through my e-mail archives I found this message from 2009. The story is so sad that I wanted to share it. When we fall for the hype, or when we get trapped by any good salesperson, whose fault is it?

I understand that the villains are present in most businesses, but when it comes to options trading I see all the advertisements and the impossible-to-fill promises. And it hurts. Too many people dismiss options with a ‘not interested’ comment just because of all the bad publicity associated with options and rogue traders.

Mark. I haven’t done an options course since I went into debt by $6,000 – one year ago. The course presented a lot of info about trading options, but did not teach me how to trade!

Currently, I am a member of XXXXXXXX Trainer community. I have not yet made a winning trade using his system. In fact, I do not yet fully understand how to use it.

Lastly, Mark, I have a small cash account under $5,000 and am pretty much restricted to buying calls and puts. Most of my trading, is part of my education process, and I understand that, I am not making a living at trading just yet.

I welcome any and all assistance in my learning process. I turn 67 next week and have virtually no financial assets for a retirement. But, I am confident I can create a retirement income through trading, and eventually build financial independence and be supported by my trading business.

It makes me want to cry. However, he believes he can earn 1,000% return – every year on his $5,000. There are no words that I can find to respond to that impossible dream.

A man in his early retirement years has almost no savings, and spends more than half of it on iron condor lessons. If that’s not bad enough, he apparently did not learn much that was useful.

Failing to learn the lesson, here he is again, taking another training course. Again he does not ‘fully’ understand the training and has made ZERO profitable trades. How is that possible?

He is still optimistic and plans to pursue his dream of making a living from his trading. Now that he is only buying options, he basically has no chance. What a sad story. I wonder if this is truly as sad as it feels to me, or if this person is just one of those people who are born to be fleeced?

I’ve always had total disrespect for those who give options a bad name by enticing people to spend many thousands of dollars for information that can be learned at zero cost. Some mentors and coaches are worth every dime. But how is the inexperienced novice supposed to tell the difference?

My correspondent is in very bad shape. Perhaps gambling is his last best chance to survive. But I wish something could be done to get the unethical crowd out of the options world. I know that will never happen.

What hurt most was that I could not offer anything useful to this person. The truth is that options trading is not for everyone, and he is a prime example of one of those ‘I cannot trade options’ people.

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