This sounded even better. But where could I buy something cheap
for option market trading? As I searched for a bargain, I discovered
the over the counter market, the market of unlisted securities.
I knew from my books that in order to get its option listed for
option market trading on the option exchange, a company has to observe
very stringent financial regulations. I had read that this did not
apply to over the counter stocks. He and his associates were trying
to obtain a majority of the 314,600 shares outstanding which the
Bruce family owned. It was this move that had rocketed the price.
The volume was terrific, and following the option
market trends, more than 275,000 Bruce shares were traded during
a period of ten weeks.
The short-sellers who had so misjudged the market jostled each other to push the option to dizzy heights in their frantic efforts to follow the option market trends and buy it. They were caught with their pants down by the mysterious upward surge of the option market trends and they could not buy the shares at any price to fulfill their obligations.
Finally, as it was impossible to assure an orderly market because of the frenzied dealings in the option market trends, the American Option Exchange suspended trading. But this made no difference to the desperate short sellers who were following the option market trends. They still had to deliver the option. Now they were willing to pay anything over-the-counter for BRUCE.
I listened in a daze to all this. My broker asked me whether, since the over-the-counter price per share was now 100, I would follow option market trends and instruct him to sell at this price.
I thought back to my daily cables, and how they had begun to paint an amazing picture of BRUCE to me. I remembered the ordeal I had undergone as I steeled myself not to telephone to find out what was happening because this would come under the heading of "rumors" which I had sworn never to listen to again. I recalled how I held on while my daily quotes revealed to me BRUCE'S sensational upward progress, and I did not know what to do.
I was offered a big, tempting profit. As I listened to my broker, I felt strongly urged follow option market trends and to sell the option. After all, selling at 100 meant I would make a fortune.
I thought hard while I listened. Then I made one of the most momentous decisions of my life. I said: "No, I will not follow option market trends and sell at 100. I have no reason to sell an advancing option. I will hold onto it."
I did. It was a big decision and a difficult one, but it proved exactly right. Several times within the next few weeks I received urgent telephone calls reporting higher and higher offers for my shares from brokers in various parts of the United States. I gradually sold out the option on the over-the-counter market in blocks of 100 and 200 shares - for an average price of 171. This was my first really big killing in the market. I made $295,305.45 profit on this operation from ignoring the option market trends.
This was a tremendous event for me. I was so happy I did not know which way
to turn. I told my story to everyone who cared to listen. I showed
my telegrams to them. The only reaction was: "Who gave you the tip?"
I tried to explain that no one had given me a tip, that I had ignored
trends and done it all by myself and that I was so happy and
excited exactly for that reason.
Nobody believed me. I am sure that every one of my friends in Calcutta still believes today that Mr. Gilbert himself had taken me into his confidence.
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Turned Investor Who, Within 18 Months, Turned $25,000
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