It's possible to trade profitably on the Forex, the nearly $2 trillion worldwide currency exchange market. But the odds are against you, even more so if you don't prepare and plan your trades. According to a 2014 Bloomberg report, several analyses of retail Forex trading, including one by the National Futures Association (NFA), the industry's regulatory body, concluded that more than two out of three Forex traders lose money. This suggests that self-education and caution are recommended. Here are some approaches that may improve your odds of taking a profit. Prepare Before You Begin Trading Because the Forex market is highly leveraged -- as much as 50 to 1 -- it can have the same appeal as buying a lottery ticket: some small chance of making a killing. This, however, isn't trading; it's gambling, with the odds long against you. A better way of entering the Forex market is to carefully prepare. Beginning with a practice account is helpful and risk-free. While you're trading in your practice account, read the most frequently recommended Forex trading books, among them Currency Forecasting: A Guide to Fundamental and Technical Models of Exchange Rate Determination, by Michael R. Rosenberg is short, not too sweet and highly admired introduction to the Forex market. Forex Strategies: Best Forex Strategies for High Profits and Reduced Risk, by Matthew Maybury is an excellent introduction to Forex trading. The Little Book of Currency Trading: How to Make Big Profits in the World of Forex, by Kathy Lien is another concise introduction that has stood the test of time. All three are available on Amazon. Rosenberg's book, unfortunately, is pricey, but it's widely available in public libraries. "Trading in the Zone: Master the Market with Confidence, Discipline and a Winning Attitude," by Mark Douglas is another good book that's available on Amazon, and, again, somewhat pricey, although the Kindle edition is not. Use the information gained from your reading to plan your trades before plunging in. The more you change your plan, the more you end up in trouble and the less likely that elusive forex profit will end up in your pocket. Diversify and Limit Your Risks Two strategies that belong in every trader's arsenal are: Diversification: Traders who execute many small traders, particularly in different markets where the correlation between markets is low, have a better chance of making a profit. Putting all your money in one big trade is always a bad idea. Familiarize yourself with ways guaranteeing a profit on an already profitable order, such as a trailing stop, and of limiting losses using stop and limit orders. These strategies and more are covered in the recommended books. Novice traders often make the mistake of concentrating on how to win; it's even more important to understand how to limit your losses. Be Patient Forex traders, particularly beginners, are prone to getting nervous if a trade does not go their way immediately, or if the trade goes into a little profit they get itchy to pull the plug and walk away with a small profit that could have been a significant profit with little downside risk using appropriate risk reduction strategies. In "On Any Given Sunday," Al Pacino reminds us that "football is a game of inches." That's a winning attitude in the Forex market as well. Remember that you are going to win some trades and lose others. Take satisfaction in the accumulation of a few more wins than losses. Over time, that could make you rich!



Babycakes: A term of endearment. This can lead to other cute nicknames such as babyface, sweetcheeks, and noodlenose.
Yield: 2 mini layer cakes

  • 1/4 cup water
  • Yolk of one large egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons natural cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup fresh strawberries
  • 12 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 1-2 tablespoons milk or heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 4 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 2 strawberries for topping

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees fahrenheit.
  2. Grease the inside of the tin cans with butter. Line the bottoms of the cans with parchment paper and dust the sides of the cans with flour, tapping out the excess.
  3. Place the cans on a cookie sheet for easier handling.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together the water, egg yolk, and vanilla extract.
  5. Pour the melted butter gradually, whisking the entire time.
  6. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt.
  7. Pour the wet ingredients into the flour mixture, and mix until just combined.
  8. Divide the batter evenly between the 2 cans and bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  9. Cool the pans on wire racks for about 15 minutes.
  10. Run a knife around the sides of the cakes and turn them out onto the wire racks. Cool completely.
  1. Place the strawberries in a blender and puree until smooth.
  2. Transfer the puree into a small sauce pan and cook over medium heat until it comes to a boil.
  3. Turn the heat down to medium low and simmer for about 20 minutes, until the mixture has reduced by about half.
  4. Set aside and let cool completely.
  5. With an electric mixer, beat the butter on medium speed for 2-3 minutes until it becomes light and fluffy.
  6. Add 3/4 cup powdered sugar and beat on low until just combined.
  7. Add 1/2 of the strawberry puree and beat on medium for about one minute.
  8. Add the remainder of the sugar and beat on low to combine.
  9. Add the rest of the strawberry puree, vanilla extract and salt.
  10. Turn the mixer up to medium and beat for an additional minute.
  11. Beat in the milk one tablespoon at a time until you reach a spreadable consistency.
  1. Put the chocolate chips in a heatproof bowl.
  2. In a small saucepan, heat the heavy cream over medium heat until it just begins to boil.
  3. Pour the cream over the chocolate chips and let stand for about 5 minutes.
  4. Stir until smooth.
  1. Slice the layer cakes in half horizontally and place them on a 3 1/2 inch cake board.
  2. Spread a layer of frosting in between each layer.
  3. Place a dollop of frosting on the top of the cake, and spread evenly across the top of the cake. Work your way around the sides until the entire cake is covered with a thin layer of frosting. Let the crumb coat set in the fridge for about 30 minutes.
  4. Once the crumb coat has set, spread a thicker layer of frosting on the top and sides of the crumb coat to create a smooth finish. Put the cake back in the fridge for about 30 minutes.
  5. Once the frosting has set, pour the ganache over each cake a little bit at a time until it starts to run over the edge and use an offset spatula to smooth out the top. If the ganache has gotten thick, microwave it on medium powder in 10 second intervals until it reaches the right amount of drippiness.
  6. Let the excess frosting drip over the sides.
  7. Dip the strawberries in the remainder of the ganache and place on top of each cake.
  8. Let the ganache set, and serve at room temperature.
Cake recipe adapted from Small-Batch Baking
Frosting recipe adapted from allrecipes


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