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!

Praline Pumpkin Upside Down Cake

Praline Pumpkin Upside Down Cake
cake, fall dessert, pecan, pumpkin recipe, Thanksgiving dessert, thanksgiving recipe
Combine two favorite fall flavors to make the ULTIMATE Thanksgiving dessert: Praline Pumpkin Upside Down Cake! Bourbon pralines create the base/top of this cake, then pecans add decoration. Once the pecans are in place, pour the thick pumpkin cake batter into the cake pan, and bake! Flip after removing from the oven and free from the pan, then drizzle with bourbon caramel sauce for the finishing touch. This cake is decadently moist and perfect!
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 oz. bourbon
  • 1 cup pecan halves 
Pumpkin Cake
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (NOT pumpkin pie filling)
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter , melted
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 3/4 teaspoon allspice Bourbon Caramel Glaze
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2/3 cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 oz. bourbon

Make the Topping
  1. Heat a 9" round cake pan over medium-heat on the stovetop.
  2. Melt the butter, and when the butter is melted, add the brown sugar.
  3. When the brown sugar begins to bubble, add the bourbon.
  4. Stir constantly until the bourbon has cooked off, then remove from the heat.
  5. In the bottom of the pan, arrange the pecan halves in the pattern you'd like for the top of the cake. (Please note that you should put the pecan pieces into the pan upside down so they are facing the right direction when the cake is turned out.)
  6. Set aside.
Make the Pumpkin Cake
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. In a large glass bowl, melt the butter in the microwave.
  3. When the butter is melted, add the pumpkin to the mixture with the sugar. Whisk together until smooth and combined.
  4. Add the eggs and vanilla, whisking until smooth.
  5. In another glass bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger and allspice.
  6. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, stirring until smooth and combined. Do not overmix. The batter will be thick, so use a rubber spatula or a wooden spoon to mix at this point.
  7. When the batter has come together, pour onto the prepared topping in the cake pan.
  8. Smooth out the batter until it's evenly distributed in the pan.
  9. Place in the oven, and bake for 40-45 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. The cake will be a dark golden brown color.
  10. When the cake has baked through, remove from the oven, and let sit for 5 minutes. (No longer than this!)
  11. Run a knife along the edges of the cake. Place a heatproof cake plate on top, and carefully flip the cake to remove it from the pan. Some of the pecans may have gone astray, so you can rearrange them here.
  12. Let the cake cool completely before serving.
Make the Bourbon Caramel Glaze
  1. In a small skillet over medium-high heat, melt the butter.
  2. Add the brown sugar, stirring as it heats, then pour in the bourbon.
  3. The mixture will bubble and pop, so continue stirring and remove from the heat.
  4. Immediately drizzle on top of the cake, and enjoy!
  5. Recipe Notes
  6. This will make a 9" round cake. The serving size, as listed here, is 8 slices, but it could obviously feed more!


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