Timothy Sykes

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Timothy Sykes
Tim Sykes.jpg
Born 1981
Orange, Connecticut
Residence Miami Beach, Florida
Alma mater Tulane University

Timothy Sykes (born April 16, 1981) an American stock trader, entrepreneur, and penny stock expert.[1][2] He is best known for turning his bar mitzvah money into over $1 million by day trading in-between classes at Tulane University.[3][4]


In 1999, while still in high school, Sykes took $12,415 he had received in bar mitzvah gift money and began day trading penny stocks.[5] He would turn this initial investment into over $1.65 million before the age of 21.[6]

Sykes graduated from Tulane University in 2003 with a bachelor's degree in philosophy and a minor in business.[7] While at Tulane, Sykes routinely skipped class to day trade.[8] In 2003, during his senior year, he founded Cilantro Fund Management LLC, a short bias hedge fund,[9][10] using $1 million mostly from Sykes' own friends and family.[11]

In 2006, Sykes was included on Trader Monthly's "30 Under 30" list of up-and-coming traders in the market,[12] a selection which editor Randall Lane later called "our worst pick" among the chosen honorees.[11] Sykes claimed that the Cilantro Fund was "the number one long-short microstock hedge fund in the country, according to Barclays";[11] Lane later discovered that the rating came from "the Barclay Group," a small research company based in Fairfield, Iowa, and not the well-known Barclay's British bank.[13][11]

In 2008 Sykes decided to recreate his initial investing success by again starting with $12,415.[14][15] He named the attempt Transparent Investment Management (TIM).[3][16] After two years, Sykes turned the initial sum into $90,368 and was the #1 ranked trader on Covestor.[17][18]

Sykes self-published An American Hedge Fund: How I Made $2 Million as a Stock Operator & Created a Hedge Fund in 2007.[19] The book chronicled Sykes' rise from a day-trading college student to a multi-millionaire hedge fund manager.[20]

In 2012, Sykes created "Miss Penny Stock," a financial beauty pageant among the female representatives for his brand and company.[21][22]

Teaching and other projects[edit]

Sykes currently works as a financial activist and educator, with more than 2,000 students spread over 60 countries.[23][24]

In 2009, Sykes launched Investimonials.com, a website devoted to collecting user reviews of financial services, videos, and books, as well as financial brokers.[25]

Sykes co-founded Profit.ly in 2011, a social service with more than 20,000 users that provides stock trade information online.[26] Sykes said the service serves two purposes: "creating public track records for gurus, newsletter writers and students and allowing everyone to learn from both the wins and losses of other traders to benefit the entire industry.”[27]

In December 2013, CNN Money featured Sykes and his student Tim Grittani on the website's homepage.[1] Under Sykes's guidance and coaching, Grittani turned $1,500 into over $1 million in 3 years.[28] Grittani was Sykes's second student to earn over $1 million following Sykes's strategies.[1][28]


Sykes is not a registered investment adviser, and has declined to provide the necessary brokerage statements and related documents to validate many of his claims.[29]

Sykes has publicly criticized various businesses and celebrities, including Shaquille O'Neal[30] and Justin Bieber,[31][32] for promoting "pump and dump" schemes,[31][33][34][35] in which an investor purchases stock, hypes others into buying that stock to inflate its price, then sells the shares at a higher price and shorts the profit from the resulting decline.


Sykes was featured in the TV program Wall Street Warriors, which aired on MOJO.[36] He writes for AOL Finance and TheStreet.com.[37][38]

He has appeared as a guest on CNBC, CNN, Neil Cavuto (Fox), ABC's 20/20, CBS Sunday Morning, Oprah and Friends Radio, and others.[39][40][41][42][43]


In January 2015, Sykes became engaged to model Bianca Alexa.[citation needed]



  1. ^ a b c Yousuf, Hibah. "Trader turns $1,500 to $1 million in 3 years". CNN Money. 
  2. ^ de la Merced, Michael (December 8, 2006). "Culturally, Hedge Funds Go Public". New York Times. 
  3. ^ a b "Timothy Sykes Will Not Be Stopped, Gosh Darn It". New York Magazine. November 1, 2007. 
  4. ^ Neal, Jeff (March 13, 2009). "Interview Central: Timothy Sykes, Part 1". Forbes.com. 
  5. ^ "Wanted: Fund Manager, No Experience Necessary". Business Week. March 5, 2006. 
  6. ^ "Young Manager Profile" (PDF). Alternative Universe. March 27, 2007. 
  7. ^ "Timothy Sykes' LinkedIn Profile". LinkedIn. 
  8. ^ Toren, Adam (October 25, 2011). "Young Entrepreneurs: "Quit being such babies!" Tim Sykes Tells it Like it Is". YoungEntrepreneur.com. 
  9. ^ "US magazine toasts star traders aged 30 or younger" (PDF). Reuters. July 27, 2006. 
  10. ^ Joe, Michael (May 8, 2012). "Two students win Sykes Award recognizing nontraditional abilities and interests". Tulane.edu. 
  11. ^ a b c d Randall Lane (2010). The Zeroes. page 56: Penguin Group. ISBN 978-1-59184-329-0. 
  12. ^ Barber, Andrew (August 2006). "30 under 30" (PDF). Trader Monthly. 
  13. ^ Thomassen, Lucilla. "5 Things You Should Know about Tim Sykes". TopTenPK.com. 
  14. ^ "Wunderkid is Back". Investment News. November 12, 2007. 
  15. ^ "'Wall Street Warriors' TV Star Timothy Sykes Sets Up New & Transparent Challenge". PR Web. November 1, 2007. 
  16. ^ Kuhn, Eric (May 6, 2008). "From Bar Mitzvah Thousands to Bar Mitzvah Millions: Tim Sykes Launches New Site". Huffington Post. 
  17. ^ Sykes, Timothy (November 2, 2009). "How To Turn $12,415 Into $90,368 In 2 Years [A BLUEPRINT]". TimothySykes.com. 
  18. ^ Goode, Michael (December 10, 2009). "A first look at auto-trading Tim Sykes using Covestor Investment Management". GoodeTrades.com. 
  19. ^ Sykes, Timothy (2007). An American Hedge Fund: How I Made $2 Million as a Stock Operator & Created a Hedge Fund. BullShip Press. p. 235. ISBN 0979549701. 
  20. ^ Chatzky, Jean. "An American Hedge Fund". Oprah.com. 
  21. ^ "Stock up on girls". The New York Post. 
  22. ^ La Roche, Julia. "Penny Stock King Tim Sykes Is Hosting A Beauty Pageant Where Girls Will Parade Around In Bikinis And Cocktail Outfits". Business Insider. 
  23. ^ "Party's Over for Hedge King". New York Post. September 21, 2007. 
  24. ^ Warner, Andrew (January 29, 2010). "How A Self-Promoting Blogger Makes $1.3 Mil A Year And Still Gets No Respect – Timothy Sykes". Mixergy.com. 
  25. ^ Kincaid, Jason (November 25, 2009). "Investimonials Wants To Be Your Guide To Quality Financial Products". Tech Crunch. 
  26. ^ "Best Advice I Ever Got: Timothy Sykes". Inc. June 1, 2011. 
  27. ^ Anderson, Tom (September 15, 2011). "Profit.ly Mines The Masses For Stock-Trading Gold". Forbes. 
  28. ^ a b "Veteran Trader Timothy Sykes Creates Two Millionaire Students, Proving the Average Joe Can Outperform Wall Street’s Big Boys". Reuters. 
  29. ^ http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dan-solin/learning-from-timothy-syk_b_4998799.html
  30. ^ Veneziani, Vince (March 3, 2010). "Tim Sykes: I Dare Shaq To Take Me To Court!". Business Insider. Retrieved 7 January 2013. 
  31. ^ a b Cunningham, Brandon. "The Curious Case of Justin Bieber and Options Media Group (aka PhoneGuard)". Motley Fool. 
  32. ^ Peterson, Kim. "Justin Bieber's penny-stock trouble". MSN Money. 
  33. ^ "Not Spongeworthy". New York Post. 
  34. ^ "SpongeTech CEO Arrested For Fraud A Week After Suing Short-Seller". Business Insider. 
  35. ^ "Bill for Spongetech fraud: $52 million". Crain's New York. 
  36. ^ "Hedge Funder Tim Sykes Bombs Out On Wall Street". Gawker. September 21, 2007. 
  37. ^ "CrunchBase Profile". CrunchBase.com. 
  38. ^ "The Street Profile". TheStreet.com. 
  39. ^ Koba, Mark. "Sykes: Late Week Contest Stock Picks". CNBC. 
  40. ^ "Tim Sykes on CNN". CNN. 
  41. ^ "Tim Sykes on Neil Cavuto". Neil Cavuto. 
  42. ^ "Timothy Sykes Interview 20/20". 
  43. ^ "Tim Sykes on CBS". CBS. 
  44. ^ How Tim Sykes became a Millionaire