Iâm a bit old school insofar as I prefer to be paid for the work I do.
And I donât just say that because I still get offers, every so often, to contribute to someoneâs new online whatever-it-is, in exchange forâ¦ nothing. Well, the promise that âwhen it starts making money, and someone finances or buys it, blah blah blahâ¦â. Thatâs okay. I have a blog of my own for whenever I want to write for free. You can link to it any time you want.
I still foolishly try to pitch a story whenever I find a website that seems to actually contain well written, original articles with things like opinions (as opposed to obvious pastiches of press releases and Wikipedia articles based on earlier press releases) only to discover âwe donât really pay contributors, but weâd happily run your article in exchange for promoting youâ¦â. Thatâs okay, I have a blog of my own for whenever I want to write for free. You can link to it any time you want.
Iâm not quite into speculating on the stock market. I think you ought to have money before you start buying and selling shares. Lots of it. And I particularly am not impressed by the concept of CFDs â or âContracts for Differenceâ â which seem to consist of gambling on how much the price of stock or assets will changeâ¦ without actually having to own the stocks or assets. Iâm sure it sounds less dodgy when you actually have the money to toss at such market speculation.
But not a great deal less dodgy.
Like betting on a horse race being run by horses that donât exist. âHey, wanna wager on whoâs gonna come first in the unicorn race? No, itâs okayâ¦ Iâve got the moneyâ¦â.
Take this GFT ad I stumbled upon, for example, encouraging you to try out CFDs with a ârisk-free GFT practice accountâ.
The term ârisk-freeâ is foot-noted with the statement, âRisk-free applies to demo accounts onlyâ.
At the bottom of the page is a more ominous statement that people like me do well to heed:
âTrading in derivatives, such as contracts for differences and foreign exchange contracts, and other investment products which are leveraged, can carry a high level of risk and may not be suitable for all investors. It is possible for investors to lose substantially more than the initial deposit.â
Thatâs exactly why Iâd avoid CFDs in general.
But why Iâd avoid GFTâs CFDs specifically is because of something else thatâs in the white box containing the list of advantages to CFDs.
Did you spot it?
Itâs the third item:
â24-hour trading, 5.5 days a week.â
What can that possibly mean?
If GFT doesnât have a problem with this statement, you perhaps donât want to be giving them any of your money. And if you donât have a problem with it, whether or not you should give it to them is academic â youâll be parted from it soon enough.
See, for five of those days, Iâm sure they can enable you to engage in 24-hour trading. But as to that remaining 0.5 of a day: in what half day, in what week, can they be offering 24-hour trading? None, surely. No half-day contains 24 hours, so by definition, they canât be offering â24-hour tradingâ in it. Not unless the people at GFT are wizards who have somehow found a way to violate certain laws of physics.
Whatever happens on that last day, â24-hour trading, 5.5 days a weekâ is nonsense.
Yes, yes, Iâm sure what GFT means is that they offer 24-hour trading Monday to Friday andâ¦ half a day Saturday? Because Australia is on the other side of the world from major financial markets. So perhaps they stay open til midday Saturday? While itâs still Friday in the US and Europe?
But if thatâs the case, what time do they start on Monday? Not at the stroke of midnight as Sunday becomes Monday, surelyâ¦ it would still be Sunday in the US and Europe at that time.
Yet if itâs not at the stroke of midnight Sunday, then there are two days for which GFT cannot guarantee 24-hour tradingâ¦ that becomes â24-hour trading, 4 days a week â and some hours on two other daysâ¦â.
Perhaps the real clue is in the ad layout, with its excellent use of recursion.
It would appear more work went into composition of the image than the text. Except that both are patently absurd. You can't logically have an image of an object that contains the image of the object, containing an image of the object, containing an image of the object, containing the image of the object, contâ¦ you get the idea. It can't exist in real life. The same absurdity applies to the statement, â24-hour trading, 5.5 days a weekâ.
So what do they actually, really mean?
Perhaps the computer within the computer within the computer getting smaller and smaller and smaller can represent the devaluation of your capital â a very real possibility. If you do intend to investigate CFDs, with GFT or anyone else, do indeed read and consider the Product Disclosure Statement on the company website. But with GFT specifically, get them to explain exactly what they mean in the phrase â24-hour trading, 5.5 days a week.â And while youâre busy pinning them down to the actual meaning of the phrases in their ad, make sure you do the same for the phrases in their contracts before you sign them. Because instead of âContract for Differenceâ, you donât want to discover âCFDâ could also stand for âCompletely F*cked-over, Dearâ. Or that GFT could come to mean âGot Fleeced Totallyâ.
Meanwhile, is there anyone who can offer this freelance writer a regular gig? I can guarantee 24-hour dedication for at least 0.33 days a week.