Here's How Actress Michelle Williams Won The World Cup Of Futures Trading Award At Age 17

Michelle Williams

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Michelle grew up watching her father, commodities trader Larry Williams, beat markets and become a prominent investor.(He created the Williams %R market indicator and has published nine books on investing.)

And in 1997, after she’d had a few small TV appearances, Michelle entered and won a futures trading competition — 10 years after her father won the same competition. 

In fact, she didn’t just win the competition, she blew it away. No one has beat her returns – 1,000% – since she won the competition.

Michelle's father was a commodities trader before she even knew what that was

Michelle was just two years old when her father forecast a huge bull market in 1982's How to Prosper in the Coming Good Years.

He had already published How I Made One Million Dollars … Last Year … Trading Commodities.

At age 7, she watched her father win the World Cup of Futures Trading

Larry's 1987 win in the World Cup Championship of Futures Trading from the Robbins Trading Company, with an 11,376% return for taking $10,000 to over $1,000,000, is still the top performance in the competition.

Larry told Traders' Magazine that he homeschooled his daughter and taught her how to trade by showing her the markets and talking about influences on the bond market.

She took to trading 'like a duck to water,' he said.

(Click here to download the interview from Traders')

At age 9, Williams told her parents she wanted to act instead

Michelle had already appeared on episodes of Baywatch, Step by Step, and Home Improvement by the time she was fifteen.

That year, she got legal emancipation from her parents.

But that didn't stop her from entering (and winning) the Robbins World Cup of Futures Trading

The actress didn't abandon her father's investment footsteps entirely.

Years into her acting career, in 1997, she won the Robbins World Cup Championship of Futures Trading, turning $10,000 into more than $100,000.

She won the competition when she was 17, and went right back to acting

Michelle was on Dawson's Creek from 1998 to 2003, leaving her trading days behind.

In 2005, she was in an entirely different competition as an Oscar nominee for Brokeback Mountain.

Now, that Michelle has a daughter, will she teach her how to trade?

In 2005, she had a daughter with Brokeback Mountain costar Heath Ledger.

Her memories of trading might be soured

In 2006, Michelle's father made headlines when he was arrested in Australia for tax evasion between 1999 to 2001 for $1.5 million from royalties and speaking engagements.

Larry, then a resident of the Virgin Islands, was found in Australia, where he had been on a promotional speaking tour.

He was arrested for tax evasion, and Michelle says she's no longer close to him

In 2008, Larry agreed to return to face tax evasion charges in the US after a two year battle.

Michelle has said that she's no longer close to her father, however Larry publicly questioned the management of her deceased husband Heath Ledger's will and assets by his father in an interview.

Update: Larry Williams emailed us with this response to our article: 'In February of 2010 the Department of Justice dropped all criminal tax charges against me and I plead to one misdemeanour of failure to file a tax return in a timely fashion.'

Surprised that Michelle Williams knows how to trade futures?

NOW WATCH: Money & Markets videos

Want to read a more in-depth view on the trends influencing Australian business and the global economy? BI / Research is designed to help executives and industry leaders understand the major challenges and opportunities for industry, technology, strategy and the economy in the future. Sign up for free at