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Alexander Kearns' Death

In a very sad set of circumstances, a 20-year-old college student from Illinois took his own life this week following an error with his trading account.

Alexander Kearns had begun trading a leveraged options account out of boredom during the COVID-19 lockdown.

This essentially means that his broker was extending him credit, giving him the power to trade larger position sizes than his equity would have allowed. Due to a technical glitch in the platform, Alexander believed that he had gone into $730k worth of debt on his account. As a result, he chose to end his own life.

The news is deeply upsetting for obvious reasons. But for the many in the financial trading community who understand the pain of losses, and the ample amount of tools available to mitigate them, this tragedy stung even deeper, as it might have been avoidable.

Had the young man had the appropriate knowledge and guidance, as well as access to risk management tools, he might have known that debt that large would have been ...


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