In our TraderTalk series, we interview some of the most interesting and best performing investors from the worlds of social media, CopyTrading platforms, traditional asset management and private traders. Below are the insights from Maya (@MayaTrades), a popular trader amongst the Twitter community. Maya is terrific in the market with a great track record along with insightful research.

AP: To begin, could you give us a bit of background on how you first got into trading/investing?

My grandfather made his wealth in real estate and the stock market. Making money and being my own boss has always been of big interest to me. I started buying stocks in high school with left-over paycheck money I had from lifeguarding 40+ hours a week. He taught me the “Buy the Dip” mentality before it was labeled that, on good companies at low valuations. From there, my interests progressed to researching more and delving into more hands-on-trading and investing. Whenever I set my mind to something, I do it well, so I knew this would not be different.

AP: Where do you start when looking for a new swing trade?

I tend to try and follow the sectors that are hot for swing trades. What is the theme in the market right now? Better yet, what is the theme in our country or political talks right now? What is the world trying to change? What news head-lines are hitting that the market is reacting to? I have always geared my swing trades toward innovative companies whether that’s a small cap biotech that has a groundbreaking drug or a new tech company with a new technology that piques my interest.

I also follow volume. No one brought the volume on Fintwit like Zack Morris during the pandemic.

Regarding technicals and fundamentals, when speaking small caps because that is my specialty, I look more at fundamentals with technicals in mind for key levels. I research a ton and am involved in contacting investor relations when I have a question for a public company. I day trade large caps almost everyday, and those trades are 90% on a technical basis. I follow the trend. Day-trading and scalping for me is on a smaller scale though. I really make my most lucrative trades swinging common shares.

AP: As we have touched on day-trading, what is your approach for it? Is your focus on large caps or small caps? Stocks or options?

I do a little bit of it all honestly. It depends on what is presenting the best opportunities. That’s one of my strongest assets within the market, I adapt based on what the market is giving me. The last few months, during the volatility, I was focusing on large cap options trading while adding companies that I liked in my longer term accounts. Liquidity in small caps tends to not be there during bear markets. Contrary to what most people believe, no one can time bottom and many people miss out on generational wealth opportunities by waiting for what never came instead of just nibbling on the way down on solid companies. People will wish they bought at these levels in 10+ years.

AP: Are there any psychological aspects that you had to change to progress your trading?

Not being stubborn and just being fluid to the market because Mr. Market doesn’t care and is not always rational! He is always out to steal your money.

AP: What do you think is the biggest mistake that retail traders make in the stock market?

Firstly, not cutting losses soon enough and not letting their winners run more. Secondly, blaming everyone but themselves for their own mistakes and making excuses for themselves on why they aren’t performing well. Finally, giving up too early.

AP: What is the goal for your trading?

I have some personal goals that I keep to myself as far as numbers go, but I want to be done with riskier trading by the time I am 30ish, so in five-ish years, and want to live off passive income between dividend stocks and real estate. When I have children, I want to spend as much time as possible with them, and never work for a corporate company again. I was in medical sales and it was great money, but the nine-five, working for someone else… life was not for me!

AP: To finish off, if you could give one piece of advice to those reading this, what would it be?

Learn financial literacy as young as you can. At the very least, max out your retirement accounts- your future self will thank you tremendously. Trading is not for everyone. I happen to enjoy risk and thrive in it. With that being said, everyone should invest even if it is just allowing a firm to manage your retirement accounts.

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