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Stock trading: ETMarkets Trade Talk: College professor hits the jackpot with quiet style of stock trading

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For every stock market theory, there is a counter theory, just like for every buyer, there is a seller. So how do you ignore the noise and focus only on what’s important to making money?

Over the years, Professor Kaushik Akiwatkarwho has doubled his trading capital in the past year, has developed his own proven style of trend catching using Point & Figure and Renko charts in a silent manner.

After teaching at various universities in Ahmedabad, Sonepat and Mysore between 2014 and 2022, he is now a full-time derivative trader and also leads the commodity team at Elearnmarkets in Kolkata. Edited excerpts from a conversation with the professor-turned-trader:



Please tell us about your academic and educational background.

I was born in Pune and went to Ahmedabad to study Computer Science at higher level and also did an MBA in Marketing and Finance before embarking on an academic career.

At Rishihood University, I was part of the founding team from 2017-2020 and was responsible for building a strong culture of learning by developing processes and partnerships that prioritized student needs and teachers.

In 2020, I took charge of the Cresta School of Management, Science, and Arts, as Campus Dean where I participated in the design and launch of specialized undergraduate programs affiliated with Mysore University . Currently, I am Head of Product at Elearnmarkets, where I develop courses on financial markets accessible to all.

Throughout my teaching career, I have been fortunate to be part of various initiatives and organizations including Business Incubator at Gujarat University of Technology and Shalom Club at MASHAV, Ministry of Business foreigners of the State of Israel.

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Kaushik AkiwatkarETMarkets.com

We don’t see too many academics and professors interested in active trading. How were you introduced to the world of equities? And what made you turn to trading full time?
Each of my educational experiences has helped build my trading journey. I was fortunate to be introduced to the industry by a mentor with a successful career in the stock market. Despite initial challenges and guidance, I persevered and dedicated myself to learning and improving every day. Through hard work and determination, I developed my own trading style and strategies.

Along the way, I discovered that many people lacked the knowledge and resources they needed to succeed in the stock market. As a teacher, I have the skills to convey complex concepts in an easy to understand way. This led me to my calling to educate others on the “Science of Trading”, while trading myself. Over the past five years, I have been able to turn my passion for trading into a fulfilling full-time profession.

Can you draw parallels between the two worlds of academia and business?
As a professor of behavior and marketing, I had a solid foundation in the study of consumer behavior, particularly the decision-making processes that determine buying behavior.

In the world of trading, understanding mass behavior is crucial to success. Technical analysis and chart analysis are tools that allow traders to analyze and predict the behavior of the market as a whole, which is ultimately driven by the collective actions of buyers and sellers. Indeed, the prices of securities, such as stocks and commodities, are determined by the balance between supply and demand.

By applying my knowledge of consumer behavior and understanding the fundamental forces of supply and demand, I am able to make informed business decisions.

How does a typical trading day go for you and how do you go about determining strategy?
As a positional trader, I usually start my work in the evening when the stock market data is available for analysis. It takes me around 3 hours to analyze the Nifty 500 charts. I prefer filtering the charts manually as it helps me improve my observing skills. My main goal is to identify swing or positional trades and enter the market only if my trigger is activated. During the day, I have a lot of free time, which I often use to read, write or create videos for my YouTube channel on the markets. I also use Twitter to share my ideas and understanding of trading and the markets with other traders, hoping to help them learn from my experiences.

So how do you choose stocks?
I take long positional trades only in the futures segment for 2-3 months. Usually I have 2 positions open at any given time. I also look at fundamentals, but I don’t short sell stocks.

You call yourself a silent trader. Can you help us understand what this means and how do you remove noise when looking at graphics?
Noise-free charts are those that have been stripped of superfluous information that could distract or obscure the underlying trends and patterns being analyzed. This may include data points such as random price fluctuations or volume spikes that do not reflect the general market trend.

As a trader, I mainly use Point and Figure and Renko charts, which are objective and only plot price action. These charts are one-dimensional, unlike candlestick charts which are two-dimensional and plot both price and time. The simplicity and lack of noise on these charts inspired me to adopt the name “The Noiseless Trader”.

In my trading, I try to avoid adding too many indicators. Instead, I focus on taking trades based on price action and only use indicators to confirm my analysis. It helps me avoid the pitfalls of over reliance on indicators without a clear understanding of the market, which can lead to bad trading decisions and ultimately wash away my capital.

How do you manage to keep investing and trading as separate subjects? For a full-time trader, this often becomes difficult.
Before answering the question, it is important to understand the difference between an investor and a trader.

For me, an investor is someone who looks at balance sheets, analyzes the scope of a sector and the evolution of a company, and on the basis of this information, makes the decision to invest. As an investor, you take ownership of the business and commit to the business through good times and bad. You focus on growing the business rather than exiting it.

On the other hand, a trader is someone who has specific entry, exit and stop-loss conditions. When you have an exit price in mind, you are considered a trader, regardless of your holding period.

To help me separate my trading and investing, I use this simple definition to guide my approach. I know that if I have an exit condition in place, I’m trading, but if I’m investing, I’m committing to the long-term success of the business.

Regarding my portfolio, I have invested in a number of stocks such as JB Chemicals & Pharma,

, , , and . These are just a few examples of the stocks I hold.

(Disclaimer: The Economic Times does not endorse any product or service that may be offered by the expert. The recommendations, suggestions, views and opinions given by the experts are their own. These do not represent the views of The Economic Times)

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