Leonard's Career Bio

 


The Fine Arts Career

During the 1970s Leonard Novy enjoyed a vibrant career as an accomplished classical musician, master teacher and impresario.  His center for the fine arts was located on the North Shore of Chicago in Evanston Ill, home to Northwestern University. Leonard taught classic guitar, music theory and master classes in performance and interpretation of the repertoire. During this time he also attended a conservatory for music in Chicago, and was studying to become a composer.

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While Leonard continues to be the consummate teacher, his former partner, Richard E Brune is still the consummate instrument maker. R.E.Brune is a luthier, a renowned maker of classical guitars, lutes and harpsichords, who has had his instruments displayed in the Smithsonian Institute.  Together, they had formed an important center for the fine arts and stringed instruments in the Chicago land area. They also worked in conjunction with Northwestern University as impresarios to produce the widely attended International Classical Guitar Series, filling the concert halls with patrons of the arts, enjoying performances of the finest classical guitarists in the world.    

                    

The Master Teacher meets the Silver Fox

It was in this setting, as a teacher in the late 1970s that Leonard began to teach Frank Jost Jr., esteemed senior member and floor trader at the Chicago Board of Trade, how to play the classic guitar. Frank had been trading on the floor of the Chicago Board of Trade for 50 years. He had also been the Wheat Pit Manager for Dean Witter Reynolds for 25 years. Frank's father had also been a member and floor trader, at the Chicago Board of Trade well before the year 1900. Frank placed a wheat chart on Leonard's music stand and for several years after that, they exchanged lessons and developed a lifelong friendship.

 

Frank began showing Leonard the dynamics of the markets and his proprietary style of trading, while Leonard began showing Frank the subtleties of music thru the classic guitar. During this time Leonard began attending courses on commodities offered at the Chicago Board of Trade, the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and Loyola University. It was more of a formal education in commodities, financials, hedging, agriculture and technical trading. Traders who were members of the exchange conducted several of these courses. Along with this formal training at the Exchanges and the input of Frank Jost Jr., there were many hours of self-study at the Chicago Board of Trade and Chicago Mercantile Exchange libraries.

 

 

Frank would frequently invite Leonard to the floor of the Exchange, and after the closing bell they would have lunch at the Sign of the Trader, a local restaurant at the Exchange. It was there that Leonard met many of Frank’s long time friends who were among the world's largest grain pit floor traders and brokers. Frank had silver hair and they called him the “Silver Fox”. These were the founding fathers of the exchange, known as "the old guard".  The conversations and collective experiences of these professional traders at the round table lunches left an indelible impression on Leonard. What he learned was that all of these traders had one thing in common. They loved the markets. Making money was secondary to the game. It was more of a by-product of what they loved to do.

 

Leonard soon found himself at a crossroads. Northwestern University had expressed an interest in his teaching and sought an interview with him for the position of guitar teacher at the University. At about the same time, Leonard had opened a small trading account and caught a profitable move on his first trade in a 1980 T-bill futures contract. It was an extremely turbulent time with regard to hyper inflation and interest rate shifts, and the T-bill Futures market descended sharply as the Governors of the Federal Reserve Open Market Committee decided to allow interest rates to float, while targeting the money supply. Totally fascinated with the world of trading, Leonard decided to shift careers. He obtained his series-3 license for commodity futures and Frank Jost introduced him to a small brokerage company called Miller-Jesser.

 

 
 

The Brokerage Career   

In 1981 Leonard became a broker and because of his experience level with trading along with his formal training background at the commodity exchanges was soon asked to write a weekly column about financials, currencies and metals futures. His column was published in a magazine called Consensus that was a compendium of market analysis from many of the analysts of the major brokerage firms in the industry. His insightful column gathered lots of interest from other brokerage and trading firms as well as from other traders.

   

Leonard was noted to be the Broker's technician, in that his fellow professionals sought after his experience level with market analysis. His clients were considered to be very high profile including a well-known multi-billionaire. In 1990 he resigned from traditional brokerage companies and chose to open his own company largely to be able to explore the "mysteries of the market" while limiting his brokerage commitments.

 

Exploring the Mysteries of the Market

 

For the next 5 years Leonard spent exhaustive hours in experimentation, creation, and study, filling up several legal size file cabinets, with papers on research, ideas, concepts, charts and printouts. Earlier in 1981 Leonard had been among the first in the industry to have a personal computer on his desk that would display graphs of charts on a monitor. Prior to 1980, he drew all of his charts by hand on a large drafting board, a tedious but necessary task. The personal computer accelerated the growth and invention of timing signals. As each timing signal was introduced, traders from that era had the luxury of time to study and integrate that work into their trading. It was a very exciting period of time, with a Renaissance of ideas and thought that raised the spectrum of trading to higher levels.

 

Novy Principles of Market Flow

 

In 1995 Leonard, always the explorer, discovered several concepts and relationships within the deep structure of the market that became for him, an archeological dig. It was as if these relationships were waiting to be discovered. By 1998 these structural relationships took on a more refined form and he decided to put his theories and concepts to a test. Leonard wanted to get a public response to this work and joined the staff at the Mentoring Institute in Van Nuys Ca. The Mentoring Institute was created as an informational source for anyone interested in trading commodity futures. Since Leonard had been a teacher for many years, this appeared to be a great forum to test out his work, called NTM (Novy Training/Trading Method). The Institute, although ahead of it's time in terms of concept, did not have a well structured teaching plan or program. It was a fairly large enterprise with 15 to 20 mentors. Since Leonard had his own program, he developed his own school within the institute. The institute took notice of his successes with his students and his very high approval rate from letters of appreciation. They wanted to clone him, and use his work and concepts to unify the teaching program and the other mentorsUltimately an agreement for his services and copyrighted concepts could not be reached and the Institute closed its doors in July of 2001.

 

                    

 

Here and Now

 

After leaving the Mentoring Institute, Leonard began teaching privately.  His teachings and the introduction of The Novy Principles of Market Flow spread from one trader to another strictly by word of mouth. Prior to this website he has never had any form of advertising other than one trader telling another out of the excitement of the work. When he was teaching privately, a waiting list of traders soon developed, that stretched out to 6 months.

 

With the advent of advanced internet technology, he is now able to teach in small groups through the use of a collaborative tool that allows groups of traders to see what he places on his computer screen, and to hear his voice thru their monitors from their homes and offices throughout the world. The format is live, interactive, and when combined with the experience and professional teaching style that Leonard brings to the class, it is truly innovative. Leonard has been teaching for 35 years and is at the top of his game. He is a skilled and extraordinary teacher who has created “performance courses” for traders, since it is his belief that trading is a performing art.

 

                   

 

He leads a very full and rich life of activities other than teaching, including trading. His insightful and sometimes humorous comments on other interests are sprinkled throughout his lessons. Leonard now resides in Palm Springs California, surrounded by family, still plays classical guitar, is a golf fanatic with a 5 handicap, an excellent Latin dancer, loves to cook, works out, and is a gifted vocalist who loves jazz. His good friend Frank Jost Jr, in their last conversation, was the oldest living active trading member of the Chicago Board of Trade. He was 90 years old and still trading Soybeans, still loving markets, and as happy as a kid in a sandbox. 

 

 

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