TopStep Trader Update and Survey

Thanks for reading and responding to today’s update of TopStep Trader

On July 31, 2015 I published a gushing, candy coated review of TopStep Trader. You can read the original review here. Part of my motivation was monetary. TopStep Trader has an affiliate program that pay’s companies and individuals a commission of sales that are referred to them through a third party webpage. From July 31, 2015 to Jan 1st, 2016 I was paid a grand total of $2,150 in affiliate commissions. In addition to the affiliate commissions, I was also sent two frozen pizza’s from TopStep Trader, as a thank you gift.

On January 1st, 2016 I decide to discontinue my relationship with TopStep Trader. Why?

TopStop Trader Unofficial Complain Department

Almost immediately after publishing the review of TopStep Trader, I began to receive a steady stream of complaints. The complaints were usually the following:

  • Its a hamster wheel
  • I thought that once I passed the combine, I would receive a trading account that was identical to the combine
  • I didnt know that I had to pay the exchange $85 to $200 a month in “professional” exchange fee’s
  • Nobody told me about the Trader Prep Period
  • They only give you 10 days to make money
  • I wasted money on a TopStep Trader recommended mentor
  • They intentionally confuse to keep collecting monthly combine fee’s

I am not going to go into the details of these very common complaints. But these complaints represent the bulk of complaints. How many complaints have I received? Plenty. If you Google search any term related to TopStep Trader, you will find my review on page one of Google search. As a result, approximately 2 to 3 thousand people, each month, read the original review, and continue to do so. As TradingSchools.org continues to grow, yet more people are continuing to read the highly positive review.

The side effect of the web traffic is that I have sort of become the central, unofficial complaint department of TopStep Trader. When the complaints from the original review started to consistently hit my email inbox, I knew it was time to pull the plug on TopStep Trader. Although, I still like the general idea of qualified traders receiving funding, the complaints left me vulnerable to criticism.

Now that I have cleared the air. The real reason for this post is because I need the help of the trading community. In the past few months, I have spoken to approximitely 30 ex-TopStep Traders and have accumulated quite bit of useful data. However, there are hundreds of people taking the combine each month and the really big question that everyone wants to know is whether anyone is actually making money with this concept?

I did reach out directly to TopStep Trader and attempted to curate this data. But what I was given can only be described as a highly skewed and colorful representation of statistical fiction. In short, it was crap. And so I here we are…I need people to complete the survey at the bottom of this page. If you have ever paid for a combine at TopStep Trader, then I need your input. Even if you only paid $1 for a combine, I need your input. I NEED YOUR INPUT.

If you know of anyone that completed the combine, is currently a funded trader, or was a funded trader…then please encourage them to participate in this survey. The data that I currently have represent only the “super complaints”, what I need is more data and more input so that a follow up review can be published. The follow up review should give us a much clearer picture of TopStep Trader.

Once again, thanks for your input and participation.

The SURVEY IS NOW CLOSED.

 

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99 Comments on "TopStep Trader Update and Survey"

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Mike
Guest
4 months 11 days ago
Let’s be clear: #1. TST is NOT an education business! #2. It’s core business is funding traders Some of the TST combine and funded rules, IMO, smell like a scam. But it’s their money, their rules. They broadcast the people that have just passed a combine (without even seen a real cent to trade!), suggesting TST is involved in education, yet that isn’t their core business. They NEVER mention anything about the people that are actually trading real money, which is supposedly their core business?? Wouldn’t you think, they would be interviewing their real traders, making a living on a… Read more »
Bob
Guest
Bob
4 months 6 hours ago
The reason I think TST is impossible is due to the probability distribution of winning/losing trades. Over time EVERY method of trading will experience the freakish run of losing trades in a row, or losing periods. It’s not the fault of the trader. It’s just probabilities. If you always have a trailing max drawdown, by law of the distribution curve in trading, you WILL hit it. There is no way around it. It’s just a matter of time. Traders with the own real money accounts on their own experience drawdown on a regular basis. Drawdowns of 10% or more are… Read more »
Mam
Guest
Mam
4 months 1 day ago

Olive Oil = Emily ?

May be they (TST) are using their Trainee Intern (Emily) for this purpose supporting online . Who knows …

Pekelo
Guest
4 months 9 days ago
Here is the bottom line for newbies who don’t know how to read their 150K funding offering: 1. You are essentially self funding yourself with the help of TST using a 10 days Live trading period, when you can trade max. 3 cars. During that they are actually backing you, but after that you are left with an account size equal to your trading profits. Thus most Live traders start to fly on their own with a 2-4K account or less and that is where they are supposed to scale up from. 2. After 6 glorious years, their biggest trader… Read more »
robert
Guest
robert
4 months 9 days ago

so its a scam. people are basically paying to train on a sim?

someone like me, with a $ 30,000 account would have no benefit at all joining them, would you say?

Bunny
Guest
Bunny
4 months 9 days ago

Robert,
It’s plain simple. If you trust your edge, you will get $4500 for 10 days to risk by paying $375 for the combine, and investing one month to complete the procedure. If this is the first attempt, you don’t need to pay that $375 either, as you can get that for $1. So, it’s better not to think in terms of the account sizes.
The real question is, can you take advantage of $4500 free cash in 10days or not?

robert
Guest
robert
4 months 9 days ago

haha. omg. jeez my visa credit line is 5 times that alone. why would anyone bother going through the rigmarole – and paying for it- to get access to a trifling amount of money. its a joke.
i thought there must be some validity in TST because big mikes forum has it listed as a vetted vendor.
usually he takes a bit of care but having them there makes me wonder about his judgement. i hope he pulls them
I am calling SCAM on TST

Pekelo
Guest
4 months 8 days ago
Just to be objective, I want to make 2 points: 1. Being a vendor is not really an endorsement itself. TST is a vendor on BMT and ET, but this fact itself doesn’t validate them as a legit business vendor. Actually, quite the opposite, after all the owners of such sites get money from them, so their interest is to keep that ad money coming, thus they might suppress valid criticism. Sometimes they do that, ET doesn’t, but again, just being a vendor itself doesn’t mean the business is kosher. 2. A business is usually more complicated than legit or… Read more »
Olive Oil
Guest
Olive Oil
4 months 8 days ago

Robert

Looks like this thread is not for you. Unless you have taken a combine or thinking of taking a combine then your comments are worthless.

Bye

Olive

Bunny
Guest
Bunny
4 months 9 days ago
Robert, $4500 is the risk capital here. Lets forget about TST for a while and think in normal terms. In general, 30% of the whole capital we deposit is what most of the professionals consider as the risk capital (At least as far as I know from the books I have read). People will take a timeout from their trading once that 30% is lost, practice their edge again and comes back to the live environment. Again, I am talking about those who have long term plans of survival in this business, not the ones who are desperate to get… Read more »
robert
Guest
robert
4 months 8 days ago

ok thanks that makes more sense

Pekelo
Guest
4 months 8 days ago
Just to make sure others get it correctly, the $4.5K is a risk for TST, this is the amount they are willing to lose on you in your first Live 10 days (for 150K Combiners). But after 10 days YOUR risk capital is whatever you made during that 10 days, and that is actually your own money (up to the first 5K). Now if you made 9K (profit target) during your 150K combine, using 15 cars, during the Live stage using only 3 cars, you are projected to make only 1.8K. So basicly you are starting out with this huge… Read more »
Osikani
Guest
Osikani
4 months 9 days ago

$1 for the first combine? Are you sure? I do not see that anywhere on their site. Is it a new promotion? (Maybe because Emmett has fallen off their praise-wagon, and so many read this site?)

Heck, for $1, we should all go take the combine just so we can have first-hand experience to report. After all, it is only 10 trading days. LOL.

I would especially want to feel just how the so-called FTP, second stage goes, and how much I REALLy get to trade.

Bunny
Guest
Bunny
4 months 9 days ago

I don’t know whether this is still valid or not.. But I believe that it works as I came to know that they are giving it for free in the first attempt.
https://ninjatrader.omnovia.com/register/28481458931649?utm_content=27760818&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook

Olive Oil
Guest
Olive Oil
4 months 8 days ago

Robert

If you have already a $30,000.00 account then no point joining TST. You have enough equity there to play with.

Maybe with just $150.00 out of your $30k take one combine and post your results here.

Olive

Pekelo
Guest
4 months 8 days ago
If you are already profitable on your own then yes, TST is not for you. If you are losing money, one could make an argument that losing $150-$350 to TST is way cheaper than losing a few thousands of your own money. But we should also calculate time lost, when people chasing an almost impossible dream, when they could be earning money doing something else. The only people whom I could see TST as a valid opportunity is foreigners who can’t open a broker account on their own and their cost of living is very low. So let’s say a… Read more »
Rob B
Member
Rob B
4 months 8 days ago
Pekelo, You hinted to something I agree with 100%, but have never stated as I know I would get the hate mail. “But we should also calculate time lost, when people chasing an almost impossible dream, when they could be earning money doing something else.” The fact is the vast majority of the 95% want to be day traders, who have not been able to save a dime their whole life and are way underfunded and think they will take up day trading to pay bills by trading with 500 to 1 leverage would be 1000 times better off going… Read more »
Stray Dog
Guest
Stray Dog
4 months 8 days ago

Agree Rob B but I’d also add learn to write and follow a budget. Know exactly how much your make, exactly how much you spend and what you spend it on. Once you know that, trim the unnecessary expenses and save that money to put towards investments. Get your trading money together yourself and while you are doing that, sim trade so that you can learn. After reading a number of these posts it seems that we’re only talking about 5-15K.

Beanz_Jr
Guest
Beanz_Jr
3 months 7 days ago
I was a 14 year old trader who was funded in a 10k combine. I passed everything including the funded trader prep. After the 10 day grace period of the funded account, my balance was -$5 (negative). SO being down 5 dollars my account was pulled. My dad called them and spoke with them and managed to get the funding back as I was only 14 and how could they do such a thing. I kept the account for another 3 months but was so afraid to do anything because if I had one bad trade my account would be… Read more »
Robert
Guest
Robert
4 months 15 days ago

Thanks for clarification of this Emmett.
TST is very open about how many traders ate passing the combine. What they wont reveal is hom many of the newly funded traders are still making money 6 months or a year down the road.

Rob B
Member
Rob B
4 months 14 days ago
My guess is that there is a reason TS does not realize the stats. If they did no one would pay for their combines. If I were to bet I would say they make their money off fees and not from their share of the profitable traders. Call me a conspiracy nut, but I think the whole thing is one big well oiled machine from the Brokers, to Ninja Trader and their scam education partners, to the Trading Room Operators promising fantasy returns with no draw downs with no proof to TS promising funding. One day someone will write an… Read more »
robert
Guest
robert
4 months 14 days ago
Hi Rob B I concure about TST but I think it’s a bit unfair to drag ninjatrader into issues with the people who use their platform. Their ecosystem site(includes all the vendors with addon etc ) even has a popup for every single one warning that the vendor is not part of Ninjatrader. I just dont see why people think becuase someone codes an indicator for ninjatrder or advertises using NT as their liveroom trading platform that tNT must be part of the con. There are useful sites in the ecosysteme and there are terrible ones, but it is not… Read more »
Rob B
Member
Rob B
4 months 14 days ago
My only problem with Ninja Trader is promoting trading educators without doing any verification on those educators. People think well Ninja is promoting them with webinars, they must be legit, when some as you have read here are the biggest scum bags around. How about Ninja actually doing some research on these trading rooms. I have no issue with someone writing code for NT. Heck I do it all the time, though I do not sell it. I guess I disagree with you. I think if you are actively promoting webinars of trading educators you should do some research. Your… Read more »
Olive Oil
Guest
Olive Oil
4 months 14 days ago

Guys if you want to talk about Ninjtrader then here is a link http://ninjatrader.com/support/forum/ Stay on topic about TST

Olive Oil
Guest
Olive Oil
4 months 14 days ago

robert. We are here to discuss TST not Ninjatrader

Bob
Guest
Bob
4 months 14 days ago
NinjaTrader as a platform is great- However the training ecosystem is all crap. Now that they have become a broker the training eco system I view as a way for Ninja to turbo boost their income while draining your wallet. You get new traders who waste $$ for their scam courses- They then purchase the Ninja software license and they will likely blow their account – Ninja makes $$ on the front end AND the back end. In addition when someone gives up that will be another customer Ninja will no longer have to support lowering their support costs. (… Read more »
sam
Guest
sam
4 months 13 days ago
I would agree NT is a decent platform with good charting. However, there has not been any serious improvement in the features. There is little to no support on coding strategies for multi-time frames so a trade can exit intra-bar efficiently. Some code is hidden that only some select vendors seem to know. It’s annoying to have to see out third party vendors for indicators and features other platforms already have such as fooprint, level2, volume/market profiles, and volume depth in the dom. It’s like most of the updates are geared toward compatibility fixes for the ecosystem indicators and brokers.… Read more »
Christian
Guest
Christian
4 months 10 days ago
Ninja Trader at least version 7 is a consumer trading platform. It is no way any place near Tradestation, Sierra or MultiCharts. It has many flaws which became available when you start to trade professionally : unable to load many charts, no milliseconds time stamp on data, awful drawing UI for indicator builders, market replay data downloaded from a server with time stamp away from what was real market data, no possibility for testing or running automated strategies without advanced skilled programming programming (you have to buy Bloodhound for this). So both NT and TST are a same kind of… Read more »
Olive Oil
Guest
Olive Oil
4 months 14 days ago
Like I said to Robert above. It is none of your business how many traders are still funded and making money. Of course they make money off fees they are a business and at the same time give you the oportunity to show them how good you can trade. What have the brokers and Ninja got to do with TST? Nothing. They provide educators on TST but do not force you to join them or even listen to them. Turn on your mute button when they are on. Which trading room operator promises fantasy returns? The only way you can… Read more »
Olive Oil
Guest
Olive Oil
4 months 14 days ago

Why are you bothered about how many newly funded traders are still making money 6 months down the line. It is none of your business. Would you walk into a local bakery and ask him how much profit he made today? Concentrate on yourself and your own trading.

Olive Oil
Guest
Olive Oil
4 months 14 days ago
Robert. Why are you so interested in in how many funded traders are still funded. It is non of your business. Would you go into a bakers and ask him how much profit he had made today? Concentrate on yourself and your trading. Rob B. Like I said to Robert above. It is none of your business how many traders are still funded. Of course TST make money off combine fees they are a business and they give you a service back to show your talents as a trader. What has Brokers and Ninja got to do with TST? TST… Read more »
robert
Guest
robert
4 months 13 days ago
.” Why are you so interested in in how many funded traders are still funded. It is non of your business. Would you go into a bakers and ask him how much profit he had made today” Well that analogy is a rather bad one. If we bring in the baker the analogy could be to ask “how many of his customers enjoyed the bread and come back to the shop every days for years, and how many got sick from it and ultimately gave up eating bread”. As a long time futures trade I can look immediately at the… Read more »
Olive Oil
Guest
Olive Oil
4 months 13 days ago
robert ‘As a long term futures trade’!!!! do you mean ‘ As a long time futures trader’ ?? If so then with respect why on earth are you interested in the TST program? Surely as a long term trader you have a cushion of money to rely on and if you have a bad day then so be it. If you continue having bad days then your strategy is no longer working. You would then have to then go and improve your performance in these fast changing markets. TST protect you from those significant sums of losses by having the… Read more »
Olive Oil
Guest
Olive Oil
4 months 13 days ago

Stray Dog. It was just a suggestion to see what his experience would be like.

Furthermore this thread is not only for the survey but also for any input from the complainers or the supporters to discuss and debate the TST concept else there would be no comment box to join in the discussion.

I have duly completed the survey and responded to comments on this page.

Olive

Rob B
Member
Rob B
4 months 13 days ago
Olive Oil, You picked an appropriate name as you are as slippery as they come. I read your posts and you asking why does it make a difference how many funded traders are still funded and worst comparing it to a bakery and wonder, why are you afraid of the truth being known. I have heard many traders say TS is a fee making scam and they have set up a system that virtually everyone will fail at in order to generate more fees. So yes I think it is important to know how many funded traders lose their funding… Read more »
Greaser sdf
Guest
Greaser sdf
4 months 12 days ago

I agree….who is this OLIVE OIL? Sounds like a complete SHILL, what a joke equating asking a local bakery if they are profitable to this topic of the trading industry in terms of transparency. I’m afraid this OLIVE OIL has gone RANCID!

Olive Oil
Guest
Olive Oil
4 months 13 days ago

Your comments regarding my name are immature and fruitless.

The topic here is TST. Have you taken a combine?

TST are not a scam they are a reputable company with over 5 years in the industry.

You say you have heard many traders say TST is a fee making scam. That is hearsay and cannot be substantiated.

Do I need to have a motive?

The funded traders lose their funding because they are no longer making the firm money so they basically lose their job simple as that.

Tip: Col Jessup was a character.

Olive

Olive Oil
Guest
Olive Oil
4 months 13 days ago

Fictional character.

Olive

rtchoke
Guest
rtchoke
4 months 13 days ago
This whole discussion on both TST and MES is missing one important ingredient. The newbie traders who think they can trade without any former experience. There’s a post on the MES review from a guy who wants to take the MES trial but doesn’t understand how he can trade CL on a $15,000 account, obviously not understanding margin and leverage. Doctors, lawyers, educators, writers spend years perfecting their craft, yet almost everyone thinks they can make a career/fortune trading futures with little or no experience. They all need to step back and think about that. The professionals are just waiting… Read more »
Olive Oil
Guest
Olive Oil
4 months 13 days ago

rtchoke

You will also be surprised how many funded traders ask which contract they should be trading. Clueless.

Olive

rtchoke
Guest
rtchoke
4 months 13 days ago

Olive Oil,

I ask this of anyone criticizing or praising any company that Emmett posts a review. Have you taken the TST combine? Did you pass? Were you funded? Are you still funded? You speak highly of TST so please post “your” experience with them.

Olive Oil
Guest
Olive Oil
4 months 13 days ago

Rtchoke

Yes I came across TST a few months ago . I took a combine and passed. I advance to funded trader preparation but I broke the 45% rule. All my fault. The rules have changed now. I have started another combine and presently working through it. I also trade my own account as well.

Olive

rtchoke
Guest
rtchoke
4 months 13 days ago

Olive,

Thanks for sharing your experience. I would hope that those complaining or promoting TST or MES would share their personal experience rather than just a comment on whether it’s a good deal or not with no first hand experience having taken the trial. Thanks for your honesty.

Rob B
Member
Rob B
4 months 13 days ago
Olive Oil, When you post a factious name then it is free for criticism. If that is your real name then I do apologize. You keep making arguments that basically say people looking at TS should just go in with blind faith and not ask for any information at all. I do not see how someone would take such a position unless they have some tie to the company. Explain why someone should not be aware of the truth of TS stats? If it is not a scam, what are you afraid of? I want the truth to be known,… Read more »
Olive Oil
Guest
Olive Oil
4 months 13 days ago
Rob B If you see my previous post I say people should not consider doing a combine until they have a proven strategy that works consistently and has done for over a year. Once they are confident then that is the time to make the next step to the combine. TST website has all the information regarding the combine funded trader prep and funded. If a person cannot grasp that information then there is a support line to answer and queries. There is no bogus fee after another. One simple fee for the combine. What is your point regarding Life… Read more »
Bunny
Guest
Bunny
4 months 13 days ago
Hello everyone, I am one of the persons who tried the combine, got funded, made some money, and lost the live account due to very poor performance. Now completed another combine and ready to start my FTP this weekend. I hadn’t made much in the live account though. It just covered the money that I have paid for the combines, and a little more than $1K extra. I am here to give my opinion. It’s true that TST makes money by selling their combines. But as far as the live environment is concerned, I am so much satisfied with what… Read more »
Amit
Guest
Amit
4 months 12 days ago

Emmett,
I was wondering if you could extend this survey idea to other vendors/trading rooms too and in order to prevent misuse have verified members only participate in the survey.

Amit
Guest
Amit
4 months 12 days ago

something like reviews on investimonials which seems to have fake reviews/ratings & i don’t think there is any website which has reliable reviews/ratings.

Jim
Guest
Jim
4 months 1 day ago

I strongly disagreed with this post.

1.) the 10 days trading trial is gone, replace with combined continuous
2.) exchange fee clearly stated in their agreement
3.) Prep Agreement also clearly stated
4.) Selection of mentors is your own choice, you have to work hard in the end.

All of what I mention is on their website

Pekelo
Guest
4 months 14 days ago

Emmett, you should update/rewrite your original TST review and downgrade the rating, specially if 2-3K people read it monthly. I am not sure this new survey can be trusted, online surveys are easy to manipulate. And why did it take so long to write this update?

How was the pizza, by the way?

Olive Oil
Guest
Olive Oil
4 months 12 days ago
Emmett. You ask for a larger sample of people in order to for put together your statistics of TST. This thread has proven that the the biased people will be your sole sample spread. I therefore suggest to you that bearing in mind this is aimed at TST funded/ non funded traders that you post this thread in the TST radio live room. This way you will get a better picture of the bulk that respond. You can very easily log into the TST radio room and post your link. Otherwise you will not get a proper picture only the… Read more »
Winter Is Coming
Guest
Winter Is Coming
4 months 3 days ago

Olive Oil – if you don’t come clean about which staff member you are from TST, I will do it for you.

Let’s face it, it’s not exactly difficult to work out who you are. It is just a shame you feel you can’t be yourself and defend your company with grace.

White cheddar popcorn anyone?

Rob B
Member
Rob B
4 months 12 days ago
Man, we must right brain left brain opposites. All the people here are just asking for transparency which you keep fighting against. And then jump to the conclusion everyone here is a disgruntled person that has failed miserably in the combine. Really!! I must say I do not get you. You have to be associated with TS, as there are so many complaints about TS and most traders I know who even like TS also mention things they do not like about the company, but not you. You are a walking endorsement with only the highest praise and you keep… Read more »
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