Better Trades is a weapon of mass financial destruction. Like locusts or plague infected rats, this carnival of charlatans moves from city to city, leaving a path of worthless training materials, SEC violations and fines, gutted IRA’s, busted trading accounts, broken hopes and dreams, maxed out customer credit cards, and literally hundreds of registered complaints on sites like RipOff Report.
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Thanks for reading today’s review of Better Trades, a stocks, futures and options trading educational company.
This is one of the wildest and wackiest companies I have ever written about. The history of this company dates back to 1998, when Freddie Rick, a self described war hero, came home from the marines. He wanted financial freedom for him and his wife, Mitzi. And they found that easy millions could be made in the stock market. Money in the stock market was so easy that they began teaching others their ABC123 stock trading system to friends and acquaintances in local churches. They describe their teachings as a “love offering” to Christ, and to prove that learning how to trade the stock market and earning millions trading stocks could be acquired by anyone. Their teachings were so popular and obviously inspired by the lord, that they decided to up their devotion and founded Long Term-Short Term inc. Also known as Better Trades.
Better Trades uses an “old school” method of spreading their educational love offering. They use professionally produced infomercials to draw in local crowds of what some would describe as low information purchasers. These are typically people in their 50’s, 60’s, and 70’s that know little to nothing about the financial markets. These are middle america types, that have worked hard, saved a little for themselves, but not enough to retire on. They are probably getting closer to retirement and are feeling left behind by a financial system that is increasingly skewed to the super rich. They see that the hope of an upper class lifestyle is quickly becoming something that is probably no longer attainable. They feel that the opportunities that only youth can deliver are fleeting, they are bored, and they realize that being wealthy is a dream that slipped away. They now understand that their current professions, combined with the constraints of time, will not be delivering those hopes and dreams that once seemed attainable That is, of course until they flip to just the right channel and inadvertently bump into a Better Trades infomercial. Suddenly all of their hopes and dreams are right before their very eyes. I have to hand it Freddie, he is one heck on a showman…the following is the infomercial.
If you spent any time watching this video, then you can see just how appealing this would be to someone running on a deficit of hope. Imagine for a moment, you are a 55 year old married male, and laying in bed with your wife of 30 years. You both spent the day working hard, she as a teacher at a local elementary school and you as the manager of Tire Depot. The kids are grown and gone. The mortgage is manageable. The cars are older, well worn, but well maintained. You attend church on Sundays. You love your wife and have a sense of community, you realize that deception and dishonesty is something that does not work for you. But you also are feeling tired and bored. You are sitting in bed, flipping through channel 256 to channel 492, looking for something interesting…and then BLAM! The Financial Freedom Expo has miraculously come to your town and given you fresh hope of a better future! Just call now and reserve your free seat. And you do! You pick up the phone and call and get the details. And your wife is laying right next to you, she has a nervous look in her eyes, but its an exited look. You tell her that its going to be a date night. You will get some dinner at the diner, and go to the Financial Freedom Expo together. It will be fun! And she say’s, “OK, lets do it! Sounds fun.” You tell her re-assuredly that you are going to just listen, have no intention of buying anything, and this is just going to be a date night. But it might be something more! You secretly lay in bed, dreaming, hoping. For the first time in years, you are instilled with a sense of hope. You look at your wife, her tired eyes drifting slowly off to sleep. You wanted to always give her more. And perhaps you still can.
The Financial Freedom Expo
A couple of days later, the big day has arrived. Its a Thursday night and you head home from work. You call to remind your wife and she is happy about not having to make dinner, it will be fun to visit your favorite local diner. You enjoy the fried chicken, she has the salad and soup. There is a sense of excitement in the air. After dinner, you are heading over to the Holiday Inn. The ballroom is rented out for the event. You and your wife are wondering if you both are dressed well enough. And what will you say if you bump into any of your friends, neighbors, or co-workers? She reminds you that you are both just going to have a look and not spend any money.
A little while later, you arrive at the Holiday Inn and see the sign that say’s THIS WAY TO FINANCIAL FREEDOM. Sure, its sort of corny and has the feel of network marketing, but you have a tight hold on your wallet. And your wife is the one that usually keeps you from making stupid decisions. Everything should be fine, and besides, this should be fun. You round the corner and next you see the crowd of people milling about. There is a registration table that is being manned by two well dressed and trusty looking white persons. You fill out the registration card and are handed a badge with your name printed in oversized letters. The size that can easily been seen from across the room.
Next, after you register, you look about the room and you see a series of well designed placards, stacks of shiny DVD’s, shiny boxes with exciting names like KeltnerKraze and Patterns In A Flash, and big promotional boards all around the room. The images below are what you see. Impressive. Exciting. You want to know more.
Let The Better Trades Road Show Begin
Ok, so now you are sitting in your seat. Positive music is pumping in the background, the vibe is exhilarating, there is a sense of excitement in the air! Suddenly, the big movie screen on the wall fires up and this exciting promotional video starts dancing across your eyes. The music is pumping, and people on the screen are preaching the good praises of Better Trades, a guy is suddenly telling a story of his mega success, pictures of a new Cadillac flash before your eyes, an attractive middle aged couple is laying by the pool holding their laptop and sipping a pina colada, a guy is swimming with dolphins, a grandma is dancing on a fancy cruise ship, a middle aged lady is standing in front of her McMansion, all of these wonderful images and exciting music have you pumped up and excited. Wealth has finally arrived. All of these people did it, and they look just like me. The ship has finally arrived. All because of Better Trades.
Next, out walks this handsome man wearing a clean pressed suit. He has a big Texas sized grin, a nice square jaw, and a perfect dimple on his chin. He looks so confident as he struts onto the stage. Next he shouts, “Who wants to get rich?”. The audience can barely contain themselves as he begins to call out names from the obscenely large name tags. “Billy, you want to get rich?, How about you Jane, you want to get rich?, come on people, who wants to get rich!”. Its high excitement as Bill starts into his pitch telling his story of being a former law enforcement officer. And how at one time, he was just like you, and average miserable dude, sitting out in that chair, with hopes and dreams. And then he weaves his story and tells the tale of how the financial markets made all of his dreams comes true and it was so easy and amazing. The whole time he is peppering in words like blessed, holy, helping people, simple, giving back, wounded warrior, financial freedom…all of the hot keywords.
After Bill does his exciting pitch with a little bit of dancing, there is more music and more testimonial videos from yet more middle aged people drinking champagne and telling stories of getting rich, and then out comes Markay Latimer. Wow, what a cute little bit of eye candy! You noticed her DVD a little while earlier titled: Squeeze The Markets. You shamefully are thinking about getting a little squeeze from Markay. She is cute! Comes out walking in pant suit, talking confidently and authoritatively. She is the grounded spokesperson, while Bill is the flashy entertainer. They make a great team and work well together.
For the next hour, the show continues. There are well worn stories of how you cannot trust your broker, how you can easily do this yourself, how they have taught thousands of investors and many have gotten rich, and on and on the show continues. A well choreographed dance routine that reminds a person of dancing with the stars.
The Sales Pitch
Everything leads to the end game, sales pitch. All of the perfectly drawn charts examples, buy here and sell here cause its so easy, all of the stories of stock market riches, the testimonials, the lights and music, its all entertainment and fun. And of course there is the sales pitch. And so what are they pitching? What are they selling? The bottom line is that Better Trades is going to attempt to get your credit card number, right then and there for an average amount of $4,000. Of course, a person can spend much more, and some do. So lets take a look at some of these amazing trading products.
Better Trades DVDs
|Wealth Preservation Kit||$3495|
|Ultimate Options Trader DVD Set||$2495|
|Trend Trading My Way DVD Set||$2495|
|Technically Speaking DVD Set||$2495|
|Spread the Wealth DVD Set||$1495|
|Squeeze the Markets DVD Set||$1295|
|Trader's Forge DVD Set||$1248|
|Harmonic Trading Using Fibonacci DVD Set||$995|
|Market Internals DVD Set||$995|
|Line Upon Line DVD Set||$798|
|Short Sweet Strangles DVD Set||$795|
|Keltner Kraze DVD Set||$795|
|Banking on Butterflies DVD Set||$795|
|Extreme Parts of Extreme Charts DVD Set||$695|
|Scanning Secrets DVD Set||$595|
|Trading the Qs and Spoos DVD Set||$595|
|Market Mindfields DVD Set||$498|
|Trading By Candlelight DVD Set||$498|
Live Trading Workshops
|Trader's Intensive Five-Day||$4995|
|Next Step Workshop||$2995|
|Two-Day Trader's Camp||$1995|
|Traders Super Summit - Diamond Admission||$1595|
|First Step Workshop||$1495|
|Traders Super Summit - Platinum Admission||$995|
|Traders Super Summit - Gold Admission||$745|
|Traders Super Summit||$495|
Better Trades Online Classes
|Trade School - VIP Admission||$2995|
|Trader's Forge Online||$1995|
|First Step Online Workshop||$995|
|Risk and Trade Management||$995|
|The Fibonacci Treasure Map||$595|
|Trader's Chat (one time chat)||$249|
Better Trader Subscriptions
|Advanced Trading Mindset||$299|
|eSignal (Monthly Autobill)||$255|
|Extreme Parts of Extreme Charts||$249|
|Fibonacci & Covered Call Combo||$149|
|Patterns in a Flash||$299|
|The Dedicated Trader||$3495|
|E-Mini Trader Talk Live||$995|
|Markay's Trader Talk||$1995|
|Monster Market Movers||$995|
|Ryan Litchfield - Trader Talk - Last Chance!||$395|
|Ryan's Trader Talk||$1995|
|Single Session - E-Mini Trader Talk Live||$149|
|Single Session - Monster Market Movers||$149|
|Covered Call Explorer||$99|
|Dale Zamzow's Market Insight||$995|
|John's Market Insight||$995|
|Markay's Market Insight||$995|
|Rob's Market Insight||$995|
|Tony's Market Insight||$995|
Who Are The People Of Better Trades?
Lets start with Freddy Rick, our self described war hero and multi million dollar trader. Well it turns out that ol’ Freddie isnt much a trader after all. In fact, he has never made a nickel at trading and the SEC fined him $1,000,000, which he actually paid and agreed to change the language of the sales pitches. I was glad to read that the SEC forced Freddie into changing “Everyone At Better Trades Is Going To Be A Millionaire, Praise Jesus!”. To the following, “Everyone At Better Trades Is Going To Trade Like A Millionaire, Guaranteed, Praise Jesus!”.
Now lets move on to Bill Corcoran and Markay Latimer. Good ol’ Bill and pretty Markay dont have much of track record either. In fact, I spent nearly a month harassing and haranguing in a failed attempt at getting them to talk about their own lack of experience, zero documented trading success and no published track record. Both of these “trading coaches” appear to nothing but professional speakers. I also contacted Better Trades using multiple names, email addresses, phone calls, all in an attempt to get some sort of background history on Bill and Markay, none ever provided by the company. During the live presentation, they present themselves as millionaire traders. However, nothing would ever be published on a website and admitted that neither trades a lick. Of course, Bill and Markay are not the first coaches at Better Trades. Prior to Bill and Markay, you had Bob and Darlene.
Robert Eldridge and Darlene Nelson are the millionaire trading coaches that preceded Bill and Markay. And it turns out that neither of these clowns could trade a lick either. The SEC shut these clowns down and fined them $130,000. Amazing stuff folks.
The Show Must Go On
I rather expect that the SEC will once again step in at some point and nail Bill and Markay and rest of the coaches. But in the meantime, the show must go on! Like a traveling carnival the Better Trades road show travels from city to city, and town to town. The same pitch, over and over, perfected for the low information purchaser. Just have a peak below of the nearest group of events…
What Surprises Me Most
What drives me crazy about this company is how they dupe so many suckers into purchasing these worthless trading materials. Since I began writing these reviews, over 6 months ago, I have gotten over 30 complaints from people that spent thousands of dollars on worthless Better Trades trading DVDs, classes, trading events, the list is long and depressing. How could anyone fall for these carnival barkers? Heck, anyone that is sitting in one of these hyped up seminars can simply Google “Better Trades Complaints” on their smart phone and find everything. The internet is probably committing 2% of all traffic towards people writing complaints about Better Trades. Dont believe me? Go to RipOffReport, there must be 200 pages of complaints. Go to ComplaintsBoard…another 50 pages of complaints.
The complaints are amazing. I had one guy write to me telling me that he had spent over $26,000 with Better Trades, and he was currently spending $2,000 a month for charts, coaching and advisories. Over the past year, he has lost over $75,000 of his retirement IRA taking trades from these morning trading talks with Bill and Markay. I asked him why he is continuing to hurt himself? He say’s that he just cannot stop. Better Trades say’s that he needs to just keep trying and that riches are just around the corner. All the while, Better Trades is willing to sell him more and more products.
Another lady wrote to me describing how she had spent $5k on DVD’s and signed up for daily talks with her trading coach and a special charting service. The only problem is that she never had more than $2k in her investment account. She purchased her Better Trades products on her credit card. She attempted to cancel her trading coach and charting service, but Better Trades said that she had to pay for the entire quarter. She cancelled her credit card to end the pain. Unfortunately, Better Trades sold her information to a collection agency that now harrassess her at home. Leaving messages and making her life miserable. Seriously Better Trades? Couldn’t you just leave this woman in peace? You had to sell her name and information to the loving hand of a collection agency?
I could literally spend the next three days filling page after page of Better Trades email complaints that I have received. Its mind boggling to me. People, please stop emailing me about Better Trades. I know that many of you are pissed and want to be heard. But its time to move on and get on with life. You got taken advantage of. It sucks. It hurts. Its time to move one.
No More Requests For Review
I hate to be a jerk. But as this Better Trades road show moves like a swarm of locust from town to town, I keep getting emails asking me to review Better Trades. Readers, please just do a simple google search and everything you have ever wanted to know about these clowns is open and public. And if you still spend your money on their products and services, then shame on you. You get what you deserve.
Wrapping Things Up
This has been a particularly perplexing and frustrating review for me write. I cannot help but think that in a few days, a Better Trades Financial Freedom Expo will be hitting Cleveland, Ohio. For the next several days, in the local Cleveland television market, a Better Trade informercial will be looping through late night TV, drawing in yet more suckers. And then on June 18, its Better Trades in Las Vegas. And then June 22nd, Philadelphia. June 25, Kansas City…and then on to the next city and the next city.
Well that’s that it for today. Love me or hate me, please dont forget to let your voice be heard below. Even the haters will my embrace warm and welcoming.