It's possible to trade profitably on the Forex, the nearly $2 trillion worldwide currency exchange market. But the odds are against you, even more so if you don't prepare and plan your trades. According to a 2014 Bloomberg report, several analyses of retail Forex trading, including one by the National Futures Association (NFA), the industry's regulatory body, concluded that more than two out of three Forex traders lose money. This suggests that self-education and caution are recommended. Here are some approaches that may improve your odds of taking a profit. Prepare Before You Begin Trading Because the Forex market is highly leveraged -- as much as 50 to 1 -- it can have the same appeal as buying a lottery ticket: some small chance of making a killing. This, however, isn't trading; it's gambling, with the odds long against you. A better way of entering the Forex market is to carefully prepare. Beginning with a practice account is helpful and risk-free. While you're trading in your practice account, read the most frequently recommended Forex trading books, among them Currency Forecasting: A Guide to Fundamental and Technical Models of Exchange Rate Determination, by Michael R. Rosenberg is short, not too sweet and highly admired introduction to the Forex market. Forex Strategies: Best Forex Strategies for High Profits and Reduced Risk, by Matthew Maybury is an excellent introduction to Forex trading. The Little Book of Currency Trading: How to Make Big Profits in the World of Forex, by Kathy Lien is another concise introduction that has stood the test of time. All three are available on Amazon. Rosenberg's book, unfortunately, is pricey, but it's widely available in public libraries. "Trading in the Zone: Master the Market with Confidence, Discipline and a Winning Attitude," by Mark Douglas is another good book that's available on Amazon, and, again, somewhat pricey, although the Kindle edition is not. Use the information gained from your reading to plan your trades before plunging in. The more you change your plan, the more you end up in trouble and the less likely that elusive forex profit will end up in your pocket. Diversify and Limit Your Risks Two strategies that belong in every trader's arsenal are: Diversification: Traders who execute many small traders, particularly in different markets where the correlation between markets is low, have a better chance of making a profit. Putting all your money in one big trade is always a bad idea. Familiarize yourself with ways guaranteeing a profit on an already profitable order, such as a trailing stop, and of limiting losses using stop and limit orders. These strategies and more are covered in the recommended books. Novice traders often make the mistake of concentrating on how to win; it's even more important to understand how to limit your losses. Be Patient Forex traders, particularly beginners, are prone to getting nervous if a trade does not go their way immediately, or if the trade goes into a little profit they get itchy to pull the plug and walk away with a small profit that could have been a significant profit with little downside risk using appropriate risk reduction strategies. In "On Any Given Sunday," Al Pacino reminds us that "football is a game of inches." That's a winning attitude in the Forex market as well. Remember that you are going to win some trades and lose others. Take satisfaction in the accumulation of a few more wins than losses. Over time, that could make you rich!


These scones, as all perfect cream scones should be, are light and tender inside, crispy outside, and full of flavor throughout. 

I like making them in advance and freezing unbaked. I bake the scones close to serving time without defrosting, getting the freshest warm pastries quickly and effortlessly.


  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 8 oz Crimini mushrooms (or white button), sliced vertically into 1/4-inch slices
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper for seasoning
  • ¼ cup dry sherry
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh thyme
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 to 4 small yellow onions, peeled and sliced into 1/8-inch thick rings, concentric rings intact.
  • 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup stone-ground whole-wheat flour
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp + 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 ½ oz (4 tbsp + 1 ½ tsp) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 ¼ cups cold heavy cream + more for brushing the top of the scones
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Fleur de sel for sprinkling
  • Small sprigs of fresh thyme for garnish
  1. In a large sauté pan, over medium-high heat, heat the olive oil. Add the mushrooms and sauté until browned, season with salt and pepper. Remove from the heat, add the sherry, and return to the stove. Evaporate the liquid over high heat, for about 2 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, stir in the chopped thyme, cool. Can be made a day in advance and kept, covered, in the refrigerator.
  2. Heat ¼ cup of olive oil over low heat in the same large sauté pan. Add the onion rings in a single layer (you’ll need to cook them in 2 to 3 batches), cover the sauté pan and cook until slightly softened but not colored, for about 10 to 15 minutes. Using a thin spatula, carefully transfer the onions to a baking sheet or flat platter to cool, keeping the rings intact. Pour the remaining oil into a measuring cup and add more to equal ¼ cup to be used for the dough. Cool and chill the oil.
  3. Center the oven rack and preheat the oven to 400F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment or silicone mat. Put the lined baking sheet into another to protect the bottom of the scones from the high heat.
  4. To make the dough, in a large bowl, combine the all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, salt, and baking powder. Whisk to combine well. Add the butter cubes and, using a pastry blender or your fingers, cut the butter into the mixture until it is evenly distributed and no large pieces of butter are visible. Add the mushrooms and stir with a fork. Combine the cream and ¼ cup of olive oil in a glass measuring cup, whisk. Add to the dry ingredient and stir with the fork until the dough comes together.
  5. Coat your hands with some flour and pull the dough from the bowl onto a floured surface. Knead the dough lightly, folding and flattening it several times. Pat or roll the dough into a circle, slightly thicker than 1/2-inch. Cut out 2-inch circles, cutting as close together as possible. Don’t twist the cutter and press it hard down to cut through the mushrooms. Gather the scraps, pat and press the pieces back together, cut out more circles. Transfer the scones onto the prepared baking sheet, spacing them 1 inch apart.
  6. Brush the tops with some cream, place an onion ring on the top of each scone, gently pressing it down with the fingertips. Sprinkle each scone with a pinch of fleur de sel and poke a sprig of thyme into the center (making a small hole with a toothpick first helps).
  7. Bake until firm to the touch and nicely browned, for about 35 minutes. Cool on a rack until warm, serve.


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