At Daniels Trading, we focus on building trusting relationships with our clients. We believe one of the best ways for you to establish trust with your broker is to learn more about him or her! In our “Get to Know Your Broker” series, we will provide you with insight into the lives of our brokers, from their backgrounds and career paths in trading to their personal favorites and hobbies.
Introducing Jim Mahan
Why did you become a futures & options broker?
When I first came to Chicago working in another industry, I had exposure to the Chicago Board of Trade. The uniqueness and electricity of the floor fueled my competitiveness.
How has your background/personality influenced your broker style?
I executed customers’ orders on the floor of the CBOT for over 12 years as a broker in the Treasury Bond Futures contract enabling me to assist with an in-depth knowledge of options.
What are your primary strengths as a broker?
I’d say honesty as well as listening to the customer’s needs, and technical analysis.
What is your trading/investing philosophy?
Conservative. Knowing what the risk tolerance is for all individuals.
What makes you unique in your broker philosophy?
My philosophy is unique based on my in-depth knowledge of options and how they work at different times in the specific option cycle. All options do not act the same. How they react depends on the time left to expiration and how close the option is to the money.
What are your favorite markets?
Most of my hedging customers are in the grains and the livestocks, but the markets that let me use options efficiently are my favorites.
What are your favorite types of trades or strategies?
Option debit trades or debit spreads that allow for profitability with market movement in the direction of the spread and reducing the cost of those spreads by selling an out of money option to finance the trade coupled with managing risk.
What is your view on Fundamental and Technical Analysis?
In my opinion, Fundamental and Technical Analysis are needed for any trade. I prefer Technical Analysis because of the finite parameters that can be used with it while fundamental that we read might already be in the market.
Beyond executing trades, how else do you help traders?
I try to assist by first listening and being honest with the customer while placing realistic expectations on their outlook for the market and the discussed trade.
How do you help traders manage risk/reward?
I manage risk with stop orders, and reward by using price targets or trailing stops.
What advice do you tell new clients?
The main tenant in successful trading is risk management and preservation of capital.
What do you like the most about your job?
I love being a broker because of all the different markets and their dynamics and how each market’s story unfolds every day.
What are your hobbies or what do you do on your leisure time?
My children are grown so I have much more time to exercise daily. Having been raised in the country in eastern Arkansas, I try to hunt birds and fish as much as possible. I am an avid cook utilizing the skill I learned while visiting with my mother in the kitchen when she was cooking.
What is your favorite vacation spot?
Hardy, Arkansas in the Ozark Mountains on the Spring River.
Do you have any unique talents?
I can ride a bicycle backwards.
If your life was made into a movie, who would you want to play your character?
George C Scott or Robert De Niro
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STOP ORDERS DO NOT NECESSARILY LIMIT YOUR LOSS TO THE STOP PRICE BECAUSE STOP ORDERS, IF THE PRICE IS HIT, BECOME MARKET ORDERS AND, DEPENDING ON MARKET CONDITIONS, THE ACTUAL FILL PRICE CAN BE DIFFERENT FROM THE STOP PRICE. IF A MARKET REACHED ITS DAILY PRICE FLUCTUATION LIMIT, A "LIMIT MOVE", IT MAY BE IMPOSSIBLE TO EXECUTE A STOP LOSS ORDER.
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