Review 2016 - I was once a (pure) copier

2:00 AM

Especially to copiers/investors and followers,
Thank you!

I wanted to start this letter by thanking those of you who have been copying / following me on this journey, regardless if you have seen my vlogs on YouTube, you felt my joy and frustration from following me on my eToro wall or because you read my thesis(es) on my website.

Regardless, my eToro 2016 journey has been bumpy and ended not how i would have wanted, seeing my short USDJPY thesis fail.

Ultimately though, I am super thankful for the opportunity eToro has given me. To be able to transparently communicate my philosophy of trading, one that is not founded in short-term expectations & greed but looks at a sustained horizon. To explain this philosophy in full, I would literally need to write it a book, till then I am calling it the "Huzza-equilibrium of return” or something like that.

My "Huzza-equilibrium" will need something like 12 years to prove in full. But for now let’s recap the beginning of this journey, April 2016.

Above: Cheers from my wife and I (not sponsored by Boost)


Review 2016

I was once a Copier

Some of you may not know this, but when I first started out on eToro, my goal was to copy other people. I knew from losing a lot of money that trying to trade while holding a full time job was very difficult.

We all have our individual work stresses going on, not to mention wife, church, family, gym. Trading was just too impractical and draining to do after work.

But we are told, if we don't put in the work, we can't get more money. So how can we put our money to work? We all know from books that we can't trust our financial advisers who are all only out for our money and not our long term well-being. With so many things to do with our lives, finance should not be one of those things where we stress out so much over. Yet 31% of married couples report money as a source of conflict!

Along came eToro. A platform that aligns our interest with our fund manager because they treat our money as how they would treat theirs. So I was on-board, I put some money in and tried copying other people. 

One Year Challenge

Ultimately I found that there were things I liked and things I HATED. So around June I stopped copying completely and decided to commit to this Full-Time, joined the popular investor program and embarked on my 1 Year challenge, to live off of profits from eToro for 1 year.

I even went from being a 4hr chart trader only, to a part 4hr and part 15 min chart trader, to a full 15 min super short term trader!

In October, I became a Cadet Popular Investor. At the time of writing (15 December 2016), I have about 201 copiers, 3,736 followers and US$78k AUM. And I thank you all so much for joining me along this journey!

It has not been easy, a few times I wanted to give up and go back to getting a regular job as not having a steady paycheck with a "comparatively" small amount of capital & risk is difficult.

But I imagine changing the world of Finance and making it easier and for the betterment of even 10 people. And that motivates me to continue on this journey.

Trading Thesis 2017

Most reports like these give economic Outlooks, which tend to be very vague. So instead here are an updates on what I will be trading.


I will be retiring the USDJPY thesis. Even though it has been the cornerstone of my investment performance over the months, it has reached a point whereby i believe fundamentally it will no longer have a large favorable risk symmetry. The Japanese Fiscal & monetary pressures have therefore run its due course. Unless it retraces back to the 108 level, we will not revisit this.

The next question is, will Japan default?

I would like to trade this, but the appropriate instruments to express this view are options and Credit Default Swaps (CDS), which are complicated and not available via the eToro platform. So we will stop at that.


Our GBPUSD thesis will continue to be in play. The GBPUSD, like all currency pairs, runs on the mechanics of demand and supply.

Depending primarily on the outcome of Brexit and its terms, these two variables are unclear. The potential impact of Brexit may actually be close(although unlikely) to negligible. Especially given the comments that the UK will still "pay for favourable terms within the EU"

But for the moment, Theresa May is still fighting Article 50 and economic indicators plus the recent Autumn paper have been quite sanguine about the outlook of the UK.

My initial thesis compares the position of UK vis-a-vis the position of the US at the same point in the 1970s where the cross was this low, the thesis continues to hold. Retiring of the thesis will depend on 1) receive clarity on terms of Brexit or 2) economic paradigm shifts for either country.

Upcoming Thesis(es)

New thesis in the pipeline including, Gold, USDCAD and AUDUSD. All of which are heavily commodity related.

Depending on correlation bias between the 3 theses, I may only launch one or two. More updates on my blog soon.

Goals 2017 

The aim is 20 - 24% return, mainly because this is what i required of me to live off. While i do hope to get more, putting targets on what the market should or should not give is not healthy.

What would be healthier is prioritizing capital preservation over returns, and that is what I promise I will definitely be doing.

I love practicing martial arts and knowing you are never complete is part of the journey. This year, I have completed what is necessary for Master’s in Science(Finance), read conservatively 40 books and listened to over 100 finace related podcast episodes (go listen to “@twoblokestrading” They are part of the eToro community!). Yet I feel like I have barely scratched the surface of what Finance truly is, I hope to continue to learn and evolve for 2017.

Above: Handing in my Masters thesis

Other Targets
  • Specifically, for those who have been copying me, I hope to come up with a Udemy course by end 1H2017. There is too much information out in the world, and I hope to filter and condense information to give you a framework for finance as a whole. 
  • Continue to vlog on YouTube and maybe start a Facebook page.
  •  I would also like to do some marketing of the eToro brand, but tangibly i have not quite reached an idea as yet. But I will have to set some targets on that soon.
  • I would like to achieve Elite Popular Investor status, but i rather let the community decide if i am worthy of the title. Hence it is not a goal specifically.

Special Thanks  

•           To God, for giving me all things and everything!
•           To my copilot in life, my wife Nicole thank you for loving me for who I am, always encouraging, and being super supportive with me on this journey. I know what I do is confusing, but thanks for trying to listen anyway.
•           To my mom & brother for never giving up despite so many shortcomings, and thank you never ending patience, love & support.
•           Todd, my performance coach, for keeping me sharp when times are bad.
•           Boulos Shakkour for being a great account manager, encouraging me to join the PI Program, and making my life easier.
•           To Annie Charalambous and the eToro popular investor team, thank you support and guidance.
•           And to Yoni Assia, thank you for creating this marvelous community!


So here's to love of making the financial markets a better place….
                                    To transparency and honesty in all we do…
                                                           …..but most of all, here is to loving each other as we love ourselves!

Raise your glasses to embracing a new honest world of finance and here is to a successful 2017.

God Bless!
Youtube: FundManagerZech 

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