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How Instagram's penny stock king became a self-employed multimillionaire

Published by Business Insider on Wed, 23 Sep 2015

TimothySykes is a financierwho flaunts his flashy lifestyle on Instagram, where photos of him working remotely in Bora Bora or sunning himself in the Maldivesgarner thousands of likes from his 396,000 followers.He's not just a trader but also an entrepreneur.Sykesclaims to have made$4.3 million trading stocks, but the bulk of his income ' "roughly triple that amount," he says ' comes fromteaching his acolytes his methods for tradingpenny stocks, attuition rates of $50 to $247 per month.Sykessaid he didn't have any data on how much his students are actually earningatonline trading school Profit.ly.He's a controversial figure within the finance community for his endorsement of high-risk penny stock trading, as well as his self-described "rich douchebag" image. He also once received a cease-and-desist letter from Shaquille O'Neal. But his Instagram feed isone of the most loved on the platform, showing him lounging around as he telecommutes from the most beautiful beaches and boats in the world. Like a less wildDan Bilzerian, he appears to livea life that most guys dream of.After discovering his enviable feed, we got the scoop fromSykesabout what it's like to be Instagram's favorite financebro, with a travel schedule that would make anyone jealous.It only took one summer of working a typical job in high school for Sykes to decide he wanted to be his own boss.Instagram Embed:http://instagram.com/p/7gLPt7DVkB/embed/Width: 800pxSykeshelped manage the inventory of his mothers retail store in North Haven, Connecticut, as a teen.It was then that I decided I would never work for anyone else, he told TechInsider. It was a typical 9-5 back office job, managing inventory at a basic retail operation which is just a tough, tough way to live day in and day out.He seems to love the adrenaline rush that comes along with being your own boss and relying on no one but yourself for a paycheck.I love the daily hunt for profits where you only get paid based on your dedication and if youre right, otherwise you go home empty-handed, he said. Being an entrepreneur is so much more exciting, especially when you fail and fail again only to succeed eventually and see your early work pay off.Now that most of his cash flowsfrom Profit.ly, he trades with "a small amount in order to teach," he said, "usually starting the year at $100,000 and growing it trade-by-trade so that my students can see. Last year I had a trading profit year of roughly $1 million."Freedom is more important to Sykes than a bigger paycheck.Instagram Embed:http://instagram.com/p/7Otmw3DVq8/embed/Width: 800pxIf I went to work for a big firm, I might get paid decently or even very handsomely, but I wouldnt have time for anything else,Sykessaid. Many people in finance make decent to good to even great money, but theyre slavesto their jobs for years, sometimes even decades, before they can come up and enjoy their wealth.Snagging a job with a big firm can also mean years of pricey schooling, he points out. You waste your youth just trying to get into this field, then you waste another decade trying to make enough money to be free, he said. Its like a lifetime of financial slavery as you spend your days building someone elses dreams, not your own.He doesn't hold any graduate degrees in business or finance. Instead, he finds self-education incredibly important.Instagram Embed:http://instagram.com/p/6LDKQEDVjj/embed/Width: 800pxLearn to trade yourself, he said, whether its stocks, forex, whatever. Understand that the failure rate is high for traders so you must work your butt off studying and testing various strategies if you want to be one of the few who consistently profit.See the rest of the story at Business Insider NOW WATCH: This futuristic apartment transforms five rooms into one
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