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A Trader's First Book on Commodities: An Introduction to The World's Fastest Growing Market Hardcover – January 17, 2010

ISBN-13: 978-0137015450 ISBN-10: 0137015453 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: FT Press; 1 edition (January 17, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0137015453
  • ISBN-13: 978-0137015450
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 0.9 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (65 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #981,119 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

“This book provides the type of information every trader needs to know and the type of information too many traders had to learn the hard and expensive way. Carley offers practical need-to-know, real-world trading tips that are lacking in many books on futures. It will help not only the novice trader, but seasoned veterans as well. This book will serve as a must-have reference in every trader's library.”

--Phil Flynn, Vice President and Senior Market analyst at PFGBest Research, and a Fox Business Network contributor


“Refreshing-It's nice to see a broker who has actually been exposed to the professional side of trading and who bridges that chasm between exchange floor trading and customer service. Carley takes the time to explain verbiage, not just throw buzz words around. A good educational read in my opinion.”

--Don Bright, Director, Bright Trading, LLC


“This book has the perfect name, the perfect message, and the necessary information for any beginning trader. Take this book home!”

--Glen Larson, President, Genesis Financial Technologies, Inc.


“As a 35-year veteran of the CME/CBOT trading floor, I can tell you…those who think they can begin trading commodities without knowing the less talked about topics that Carley discusses inA Trader's First Book on Commoditiesare sadly mistaken. Anyone who trades their own account, or would like to, should read this book.”

--Danny Riley, DT Trading


The Simple, Practical, 100% Useful How-To Guide for New Commodities Traders


You can make large profits by trading commodities--but you'll need significant practical knowledge of the associated risks and market characteristics before you start. That's where this book comes in. You won't find boring theory or bewilderingly complex trading strategies here. You will find specific guidance on accessing commodity markets cost-effectively, avoiding common beginners' mistakes, and improving the odds of successful, profitable trades.


Drawing on her extensive experience teaching traders, Garner shows how to calculate profit, loss, and risk in commodities, and choose the best brokerage firm, service level, data sources, and market access for your needs.


Garner demystifies the industry's colorful language, helps you clearly understand what you're buying and selling, and walks you through the entire trading process. She concludes with a refreshingly new look at topics such as trading plans, handling margin calls, and even maintaining emotional stability as a trader.


Know the players, know the language, know the techniques

Master the basics painlessly and avoid beginner's mistakes


Choose the right brokerages, services, trading platforms, and tools

Get what you need; don't pay for what you don't need


Make sense of confusing commodities quotes

Know what you're buying, what it costs, the returns you're earning, and the risk you're taking


Build a flexible trading plan that works

Predict price, manage risk, and make trades that reflect your analysis


About the Author

Carley Garner is Senior Market Analyst and Broker with DeCarley Trading and a columnist for Stocks & Commodities. The author of Commodity Options, Garner writes two widely distributed e-newsletters, The Stock Index Report and The Bond Bulletin.


Her work has been featured in Stocks & Commodities, Futures, Active Trader, Option Trader, Your Trading Edge, and PitNews Magazine. She has been quoted in media ranging from Reuters to Investor’s Business Daily and The Wall Street Journal. Garner provides free trading education to investors at www.decarleyrading.com.


Customer Reviews

Very well written book.
Raul Cordoba
This is a great first book for new traders that want to begin trading commodities.
Steve Burns
It appears evident that the author just rushed through this book.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
On a 1-10 scale I would give my own knowledge of stocks a 7, bonds a 5 and commodities a 3. I am in the steel business, but steel is not traded like a commodity (though there have long been efforts to change that). I understand the general theory of how the commodities markets are supposed to work, but I ordered this book because I wanted to get a deeper understanding of how they function on a day to day basis. I was very pleased with the scope of this book and would recommend it to people who are considering getting involved, in a modest way, with commodities.

Please note though that one book, no matter the author's skill or breadth of knowledge, is NOT capable of turning anyone in to a professional commodities trader. Some of the negative reviews are both amusing and scary because they seem to be written by people who figured that they would just buy X commodity and suddenly become millionaires. I guess every market (and poker) relies to some extent on Darwinism - it's the amateurs that end up making the pros rich.

I think that Ms. Garner manages to successfully steer a course down the middle in terms of providing enough broad, general, information for newbies, while still including some actionable technical information which would allow you to start trading immediately (if unsuccessfully).

At the end of the day, commodities trading isn't for me. Between a full-time job and other activities, I don't have the time left to devote hours and hours to do the research that might possibly allow me to be a successful dabbler in commodities. Nor do I have the ability to constantly watch the markets to catch the rapid rise and falls that provide brief trading opportunities. This book helped to convince me that commodities trading is best left to others. It is this conclusion that perhaps is worth far more than the purchase price of this book.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By J. Finkel TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 24, 2010
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
"A Trader's First Book on Commodities" is an overarching introduction to the US commodities futures market. Everything from contract size and pricing to choosing a broker is covered. Unfortunately the author covers each topic in such poor depth that I would only recommend this book to someone completely unfamiliar with commodities and futures contracts.

I approached the book expecting to be firmly within the target audience, given the title. However any trader, even one without experience in commodities, would find little of value in this book. Furthermore, I cannot imagine this book helping anyone make money trading commdities. The author makes no attempt to discuss research, data, analytics, mathematics, stochastics, etc. Some of the 'facts' brought up are even dismissed by the author as mere guesses. For example, the author mentions that the top 20% of brokers bring in 80% of the commissions, with the caveat that this estimation has absolutey no basis. Isn't it the role of the author to do research and present information that is both relevant and accurate?

On the positive side, the book is exceedingly approachable. The author makes a great effort to organize the book sensibly and to spell out every detail. I've seen similar books that gloss over too much terminology and get bogged down in too many ill-conceived attempts at explaining the technical aspects of trading. "A Trader's First Book on Commodities" proves a quick and easy read. I imagine it could be a great introduction into the world of commodities or finance in general for the completely uninitiated. Still, the shallow depth (even for an introductory text) is a major negative.
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18 of 23 people found the following review helpful By XNOR VINE VOICE on April 14, 2010
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Just like stocks - you can trade on fundamentals or on technicals & psychology
- Fundamentals as in What affects cotton prices ? Which are the international markets, consumers, producers, plant diseases, climatic conditions... how to sense the demand ... Can be a huge thesis in itself.
- Technicals as in Charts, moving averages, Candle stick charting (Infact Candle stick charting first originated from Rice trading in Japan in the 1800s)

Well, that is not what this book is about - this book is exactly what it says in the title - it is an introduction to what you are getting into, what you need to be cautious about and what are the different terminology, futures, options, hedging.

The book starts off on a cautious note on the rise of Commodity prices in 2007-2008 and the crash there after - the F&O market led the oil prices spike to $147 in mid of '08 and came crashing to $31 in less than an year. Nobody could have predicted this and traders whom we see on CNBC are probably who have just caught this by a streak of luck rather than intelligent predictions - so for most of us, it is better to be conservative and hedge our risks and play by emotional discipline rather than moving with bold predictions.

Then the book gets into details of hedging risks, 5-year, 10-year notes, bit on the technical analysis, then about individual commodities.

Overall, if you are starting off on commodity trading - this is definitely a book to begin with and you will end this book with a thirst to read more
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Most Recent Customer Reviews

More About the Author

Senior Market Strategist and Broker, Stocks & Commodities Magazine Columnist and Author

Carley Garner is an experienced futures and options broker with DeCarley Trading, a division of Zaner, in Las Vegas, Nevada. She is also the author of "A Trader's First Book on Commodities" (two editions) , "Currency Trading in the FOREX and Futures Markets", and "Commodity Options" published by FT Press, a division of Prentice Hall. Her e-newsletters, The DeCarley Perspective, and the Financial Futures Report, have garnered a loyal following; she is also proactive in providing free trading education.

Carley is a Magna Cum Laude graduate of the University of Nevada Las Vegas, from which she earned dual bachelor's degrees in both Finance and Accounting. Carley jumped into the options and futures industry with both feet in early 2004 and has become one of the most recognized names in the business.

Her fast paced career began in early 2004; since then, Carley has been featured in the likes of Stocks & Commodities, Futures, Active Trader, Option Trader, Your Trading Edge, Equities, Expiring Monthly and Pitnews Magazine. Carley is often interviewed by news services such as Reuters and Dow Jones Newswire, she has been quoted by the Investor's Business Daily and the Wall Street Journal, and her market analysis is often referenced on Jim Cramer's Mad Money on CNBC. She has also been known to participate in Radio interviews and can be found on the speaking circuit.

Visit www.DeCarleyTrading.com or www.CarleyGarnerTrading.com for more details.

Carley is looking forward to your feedback, she can be reached at 1-866-790-TRADE (8723)or cgarner@decarleytrading.com!