The Gateway to Algorithmic and Automated Trading

The Automated Trader Interview

Published in Automated Trader Magazine Issue 21 Q2 2011

24FX Management’s Andy Schnappberger describes annual returns above 20% and a total return since launch of 900% as “not that amazing”. We disagree. The firm was launched in 2001 and provides “specialised currency risk management for an exclusively international client base”. The approach is to “focus solely on our specific areas of core competence in the field of fx trading, technical analysis and advisory”. Larry Levy went to meet Andy Schnappberger, and found him looking for partners to launch a fund.

Andy Schnappberger

Larry Levy:Tell us about your background in the markets and how 24FX came about.

Andy Schnappberger: I have been trading for about 17 years, starting with a small management firm in Germany, then co-founding Tactical Derivatives, a classic external portfolio manager for small institutions with branches in Spain and Switzerland. After a few years with great success we sold the business to a private equity firm, and I then worked as a prop trader and portfolio manager for a bank in Germany and a trading group in Singapore.

Later I joined a family office where I was responsible for building up new strategies and rebuilding the family's capital market activities. That was when I founded 24FX - because I thought it was a good idea. At first 24FX traded only for the family office, but later we started to accept external money too. Now we have more family offices worldwide and are looking to expand.

24FX is a classic risk management firm only for qualified investors, institutions and family offices. We give trading advice for hedging forex exposure as well as the usual advice about risk positions in different currencies.

Larry Levy: What attracted you to automated trading?

Andy Schnappberger: The current market is a really large pool of information and price action. As a small team you can't focus on just a single currency; you must look wider. You have to spread your risk - this is very important - and trade different currency pairs, but all with the same system. Automated trading helps spread the risk and maintain oversight of what is going on in the markets. It makes you more disciplined and neutral to the market, because you only have to focus on what is going on with the transaction. This saves time in the trading day. 90% of our trades are fully automated.

I am only interested in trading automatically where my system comes up with certain cross patterns. Most of the time I do not care about the cross itself.

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