Investment

Most Well-Known Forex Traders

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The vast majority of currency traders avoid the limelight, but a select few have risen to international stardom. These forex brokers have broken the mold, posting incredible results over long careers. It is not surprising that they are people of influence who have had a profound impact on the investment industry.

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Let’s start with George Soros. He was born in 1930 and began his financial career at Singer & Friedlander in London after leaving Budapest, Hungary, in 1947. Soros worked at a series of financial firms until he established Soros Fund Management in 1973.

Soros Fund Management reportedly generated $22 billion in profits in August 1998.

George Soros rose to international fame 30 years ago as the trader who broke the United Kingdom’s central bank, netting a profit of $1 billion after short-selling a reported $10 billion in British pound sterling (GBP).

Stanley Druckenmiller and Andy Krieger

Stanley Druckenmiller is another legendary figure. One of the most famous traders began his financial career in 1977 as a management trainee at The Pittsburgh National Bank.

Druckenmiller quickly rose to success and formed his company, Duquesne Capital Management, three years later. He then successfully managed money for George Soros for a number of years in his role as the chief strategist for the Quantum Fund for more than a decade.

Stanley Druckenmiller also worked with Soros on the notorious Bank of England trade, which launched his rise to stardom. Druckenmiller’s fame intensified when Druckenmiller was featured in the best-selling book, The New Market Wizards, published in 1992.

 After surviving the 2008 financial crisis, Druckenmiller closed his hedge fund.

Now, we can discuss Andy Krieger’s life. He joined Banker’s Trust in 1986 after leaving a position at Salomon Brothers.

Krieger acquired an immediate reputation as a successful trader, and the company rewarded Krieger by increasing his capital limit to $700 million.

 This bankroll put Krieger in a perfect position to profit from the Oct. 19, 1987 crash known now as Black Monday.

He focused on the New Zealand dollar, which Krieger believed was susceptible to short selling as part of a global panic in financial assets. Krieger significantly leveraged his exposure by using foreign currency options combined with his already high trading limit, buying a short position that may have rivaled the New Zealand money supply.

 As a result of this trade, the legendary forex trader netted $300 million in profits for his employer.

Bill Lipschutz and Bruce Kovner

Any list of legendary forex traders would be incomplete without Bill Lipschutz and Bruce Kovner.

One of the most famous forex traders started trading while attending Cornell University in the late 1970s. During that time, Lipschutz turned $12,000 into $250,000; nevertheless, he lost the entire stake after one poor trading decision. In 1981,  Lipschutz began working for Salomon Brothers. 

He migrated into Salomon’s newly-formed foreign exchange division at the same time forex markets were exploding in popularity. Bill Lipschutz was an immediate success, earning $300 million-plus per year for the company by 1985.

The legendary forex trader became the principal trader for Salomon’s massive forex account in 1984, holding that position until his departure in 1990. Lipschutz became the Principal and Director of Portfolio Management for Hathersage Capital Management.

Bruce Kovner didn’t make his first trade until 1977, when he was 32. Kovner borrowed against his personal credit card in order to buy soybean futures contracts and netted a $22,000 profit.

Kovner subsequently joined Commodities Corporation as a trader, booking millions in profits and gaining a solid industry reputation.

He is the founder of Caxton Associates, one of the world’s most successful macro hedge funds. The fund’s profits, as well as management fees, split between financial and commodity positions, made him one of the biggest players in the forex world. Kovner retired in 2011.

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