- Verified Trades
- User Experience
Trading Advantage is a fraud. Not just any fraud, but a fraud executed on an industrialized scale. A mechanized and efficient marketing machine that systematically strips the victim of whatever resources the victim has available. Trading Advantage is an oven of hellish design. Where the victim is lead down a primrose path of fraudulent marketing, false promises, and guarantees of 500% monthly investment returns.
Trading Advantage employs a cadre of hyper-aggressive and morally challenged boiler-room salespersons with only one directive. To convince the naive and gullible to willingly proffer their credit card number for a $10,000 investment signals program.
Trading Advantage is a complete and total shitshow. Ankle deep in a fraudulent promotion, the turd-maestro Larry Levin peddles his get-rich-quick scheme in an endless stream of radio advertisements. The radio advertisements all timed to play as 'middle America' drives to work in the morning and drives home in the evening.
Thanks for reading today’s review of Trading Advantage
What is Trading Advantage? The company is a futures, options, stocks, and currencies educational company. Trading Advantage was founded by Larry Levine, operating out of Chicago, Illinois. An examination of Archive.Org reveals that Trading Advantage began aggressively marketing a ‘day traders education’ program since about 2010.
Trading Advantage offers the following financial education modules. Each module must be purchased individually.
- Futures Day and Swing Trading $3k.
- Options Trading $3k.
- Stocks Trading $3k.
- Currencies Trading $3k.
The Trading Advantage educational modules are web-based, where the client reads the presented educational material and then clicks through to subsequent materials.
The ‘crown jewel’ of Trading Advantage are not the financial education modules. The ‘crown jewel’ is the live day trading room. The live day trading room is moderated by a person named Dan O’Brien. The live day trading room focuses on trading a single financial product, the Emini SP500 futures contract.
Before I go any further into this review, I think it would best if I gave the audience a ‘play-by-play’ as to how Trading Advantage markets their trading education products.
Trading Advantage: Entering the Sales Funnel
Trading Advantage is an aggressive advertiser. A inquiry at SemRush marketing analytics estimates that the Trading Advantage current monthly ad spend, for just Google display advertisements is well over $10k per month. The keywords that the company is targeting are squarely focused on the “home based business, make money from home” consumer niche. Essentially, the company is attempting to find and capture the attention of individuals looking to make extra money–from the comfort of their sofa.
Trading Advantage is also a very aggressive advertiser on satellite and AM radio stations. TradingSchools.Org contacted an independent radio marketing expert at Rocket Radio and asked for an estimated monthly ad spend and focus advertising demographic for Trading Advantage. Rocket Radio estimates that Trading Advantage, for the year 2016 spent well over $250k for various radio spots. The demographic and advertisements for Trading Advantage appears to focus on middle-aged people driving to work in the morning. And driving home from work in the evening.
The radio ads appear to be attempting to tap into the frustrations of persons that need to make a living and need to commute to work every day.
The radio ads are quite seductive. Truncated examples:
Hi, this is Larry Levine at Trading Advantage. Are you tired of being broke? Would you like to take control of your financial future? Call me right now to learn how I make millions of dollars each year day trading. I want to teach you my secrets. Just call now and leave your name and phone number. I will call you back with details on how you can change your life right now.
Hi, this is Larry Levine at Trading Advantage. I earn millions of dollars each year day trading. And I want you to trade with my money! I want to teach you my secrets. And then I want to give you my money so that you can trade! Risk free! And we share the profits. Just call now and leave your name and phone number. I will call you right back!
Once a person calls the phone number and leaves their personal information. The person officially enters the ‘sales funnel’ of Trading Advantage. Strap on your seatbelt because the ride is about to get crazy.
Trading Advantage: Aggressive Sales Staff
The first layer of the Larry Levine/Trading Advantage sales process begins with a call back from a ‘tier one’ salesperson. This person will ask some very basic questions about your life. Some of these questions include, “Are you happy with your life?” and “Do you want to be financially independent?” and “How would you feel if you worked from home and earned an extra $10k each month?” And “Would you like to trade risk-free with Larry Levine’s money?” Pretty hard to answer no to any of these questions. All the while, in the background of the of the sales call, you can hear a cacophony of voices from the people that are crammed inside of what can probably best be described as a boiler room situation.
All the while, in the background of the of the sales call, you can hear a cacophony of voices from the people that are crammed inside of what can probably best be described as a boiler room situation.
The ‘tier one’ sales presentation is a primrose path of questions that are meant to elicit dreams of financial independence, solve financial difficulties, and give a sense that a better life is quickly available through the teaching of Larry Levine.
The final series of ‘tier one’ sales questions are meant to discover if the person has any available financial resources. “Do you have any money to invest?” or “Can you borrow money from family, friends, cash advance, mortgage, or a credit card?” If the ‘tier one’ salesperson can establish that you actually have some money to spend, you will be then flash transferred to the ‘tier two’ salesperson.
The ‘tier two’ sales person is what I would consider being “The Closer.” This is a person with a high level of salesmanship that really understands how to work the psychological levers of the prospective customer. The salesperson reaffirms repeatedly that you “want to become financially independent” and actually has some money to spend today.
The ‘tier two’ sales person then cajoles and manipulates the person into visiting the Trading Advantage website. The ‘tier two’ salesperson explains that they want to show how the program works, and how much money “average everyday people” are making by day trading with the Trading Advantage methodology. The prospect is eagerly encouraged to log into a screen sharing presentation with the salesperson.
After you log into the sales presentation with the salesman, one of the very first promotional slides will be the supposed real-time performance of the live day trading room. TradingSchools.Org captured and recorded the entire sales presentation via screen share. We were shown the following:
The salesman then explained that the above results were for just 2016. He explained that all you need to do is log into the live day trading room, and simply copy the trades. If you would have simply copied the trades, then you would have easily earned nearly $120k for just 2016. The salesman asked how this type of money would change my life? And, how would I feel if I had an extra $10k each month? He explained that all I needed to do was ‘copy and paste’ to realize these amazing profits. “It’s so simple” the salesman declared.
I next asked how much of an account size do I need to ‘copy and paste’ these trades? He explained that some brokers will allow you to trade with as little as $500 for a single contract. All I needed was to scrape up a few hundred dollars in which to start trading. Simply ‘copy and paste’ the trades for consistent profits.
Next, the salesperson then shows me the following marketing graphic…
The salesman then explains that the above graphic was for “Only the first 3-months of 2017!”
As you can see, these investment returns are pretty outrageous. He further states that a person can trade the Emini SP500 futures contracts with only a minimum of $500, and can reasonably expect to earn about 500% per month. That many people were earning multiple times these returns by simply investing larger amounts. That you simply needed to ‘copy and paste’ the trades called inside of the live day trading room. “It’s so easy” he cooed. He is also stated that he was live trading the signals and experiencing these investment returns himself. Completely verifiable.
The salesperson then stated that the largest drawdown in the past 7 years was only $1,500. And that the largest losing trade was only $400. Pretty incredible investment returns…so glad that I recorded everything for veracity.
Next, he asked how much I would be willing to pay-right-now to earn this type of monthly income? And that he has a special offer for just me. And made me promise to not tell anyone about this special offer. He then presents the following graphic that details the costs of the live day trading room.
He recommends that I purchase the 1-year trading room membership plan at $10,000. That most people pay it off within a month or two of ‘copy and paste’ the trades from the live trading room.
He next explains that my investment returns are guaranteed. That Trading Advantage includes a “100% Money Back Guarantee” and then shows me the following graphic…
Next, I asked about the “100% Money Back Guarantee” and if I was not happy, would I get my money back for a full refund? He said absolutely! But only if the live day trading room did not produce at least $2,995 in verifiable trading profits.
Trading Advantage: Verifiable Trading Profits?
My next question to the Trading Advantage salesman was regarding verified performance results. Quite simply, I wanted to know if he could show me something that corroborates his claims that the trading room was earning hundreds of thousands of dollars each year, with only a $1,500 maximum monthly loss? I wanted to see something that verified that the live day trading room had the largest losing trade of only $400 for the past 7 years.
Could he show me an account statement that showed 100% average monthly gains for the past 82 months?
Does Dan O’Brian, the moderator of the live day trading room have a trading account that verifies this performance?
Does the salesman, who claimed to also trade the signals from the live trading room have an account statement that verifies the investment returns?
The answer to all of these questions was NO. The company can show me nothing. I pressed the salesperson into a more transparent position, and he replied “Look, I don’t need to lie to you. Everyone is making big bank and getting rich. You are missing out on the opportunity of a lifetime!”
He then explains, “Look I have proof from actual subscribers. Let’s log into the live day trading room and ask the audience if people are gettin’ rich”. Next, we log into the trading room and he starts asking questions to what appears to be a random audience. Of course, this well rehearsed and scripted presentation was akin to a loaded deck of cards. In almost unison, random messages start flooding the screen from various people all proclaiming the awesomeness of Larry Levin’s Trading Advantage Day Trading Program. How they were all making big money. And its so simple.
It had the feeling of a well-oiled and well-scripted circus act. Where every question that the prospective customer could possibly imagine had a pre-packaged response at the ready. I felt like I was in a soup factory. The ingredients of the hustle all moving effortlessly down the assembly line.
What about those trading signals?
During my time inside of the live day trading room, never once did I see a live trading account. No trading DOM present on the screen. No trading from the chart. Nothing that verifies that the ‘trading signals’ are live. Instead, what I was offered was a chat box where supposedly, Dan O’Brian was recording his actual trades. Screen shot of chat box below…
Please notice the nature of the ‘supposed’ trading signals. They are all scalp trades for tiny profits. Never are these trades executed on a live trading DOM. Dan O’Brian just enters them into the chat box. And we are supposed to believe that these are real trades? The trades were like magic apparitions. They just appeared as ‘yet another profitable trade’ and then the magical Dan would proclaim “yet another winning trade!”
Next, I asked if these trades were live trades? Were they being executed with a live trading account? Trading Advantage replied that these were not live trades. These were just simulated trades. The trades typically begin with the wispy and whimpering voice from Dan the magic trading man and end with excited proclamations of yet more trading profits! Amazing stuff folks. Anyone can scalp simulated day trades by yelling at a computer screen, but executing scalp day trades with a live trading account is an entirely different exercise.
With a live trading account, you cannot easily jump into limit orders by ‘wishing’ it will happen. But with Dan the magic trading man, he can fill a limit order with the ease and grace of a verbal ballerina. A well oiled and thoroughly greasy sounding verbal ballerina. Unfortunately, the entire performance was complete and total bullshit. To the untrained eye, it looks so darn easy. But to anyone that has actually traded with a live trading account, the entire show was pure fraud.
The heart of the argument.
The very heart of the sales pitch is that a person pays thousands of dollars each month, to receive ‘trading signals’. And these trading signals are simple ‘copy and paste’ trades. That these ‘trading signals’ are guaranteed to generate thousands of dollars each month in additional income for investors. That “it’s so easy” as the salesman explained. That the average Joe will be able to very shortly quit his day job. That all of his money worries will shortly be nothing but a bad memory. That your wife will be so proud of you.
The Trading Advantage investment program is a custom tailored confidence game, meant to lure in ‘middle America’. Trading Advantage is selling the hyped-up fantasy that any person can sit on their couch all-day-long and simply ‘copy and paste’ the trading signals, and easily earn +$120k a year.
But I have a question…if its “so easy”, then why doesn’t Dan O’Brian the magic trading man simply trade with a live trading account? Then the whole world can verifiably witness his trading greatness.
And the telephone salesman, crammed into a miserable boiler room environment, making the same get-rich-quick sales pitch to the endless stream of suckers, why doesn’t he quit that miserable job and simply ‘copy and paste’ the trading signals? He can sit on his fat ass all day long, eating twinkies and endlessly snacking on spicy cheetoh’s, all the while ‘copy and paste’ the trades of Dan the magical trading man.
Wrapping Things Up
Thanks for taking the time to read this review of Trading Advantage. This was a pretty long article. And writing it really pissed me off. As I watched, and re-watched the recorded sales presentation…I got progressively more upset and irritated. This company pretty much represents everything that is horrible and dishonest about the trading educational business.
Larry Levine has mechanized and created a factory of fraud. Where suckers are lured into the scheme through a massive advertising campaign. Then the suckers are ‘processed’ through a boiler room and shown a series of fake and fraudulent promotional materials. All promising easy riches and trading glory. In a moment of weakness or financial desperation, the victim willingly pulls their credit card from their pocket. And sacrifices himself into the factory of fraud. To be stripped of what little he has remaining.
That’s if for today. Don’t forget to leave a comment below. And if you have been suckered by Larry Levine and his gang of fake traders, would love to read your story in the comments section below.