Frequently Asked Questions
What is Spark Profit?
Spark Profit aims to be the world's most rewarding app! It teaches you how to profitably trade on the financial markets, and pays you up to 100 Dollars when you do well. This page tells you more about Spark Profit's benefits .
How do I get started?
PC and Macs: just go direct to the Spark Profit web application. (You might want to bookmark it!)
Apple phones and tablets: download it from the Apple App Store.
Android phones and tablets: download it from the Google Play Store.
Others: If you are on a mobile device but cannot use the links above, try the Spark Profit web application. It will actually work fine for most devices direct in your mobile browser. Then you can you the "Add to Homescreen" link from your browser's menu to get a better fullscreen experience.
What's the general idea?
The goal of Spark Profit is to make predictions to earn points. With enough points you then earn up to 100 Dollars. The points carry over for a while, meaning that you can earn for many weeks from a single game.
The predictions you make are about real financial markets. As the price changes after you make a prediction, your score will go up or down. Because our app is so intuitive and graphical you don't even need to think about the numbers to use it. Just tap and draw!
What are the terms of service?
Please see the full Spark Profit Financial Education Network Terms of Service.
A very brief overview:
- You can only open one account
- You must be 18 or older
- You must have a phone capable of receiving an SMS (Why?)
- You should always use the latest version of the app
Please note that users living in North Korea or anyone on the U.S Treasury Department's list of Special Designated Nationals or the U.S. Commerce Department's Table of Deny Orders will not be able to register.
How do I earn Dollars?
There are two ways to earn Dollars: predict well (maximum 100 Dollars) or invite friends (unlimited). You can do both at the same time.
Before you can earn Dollars you will need to register your email and phone number (Why?).
Earning Dollars by predicting well
Every prediction you make will win or lose points. All of these predictions are summed together in your total score
At the end of each week if your total score is greater than the weekly threshold, currently set to 20,000 points, you will earn Dollars. The larger your total score is, the more Dollars you earn. It's really that simple.
Then, after prizes are paid, we reduce everyone's total score by the same small percentage. This means that no-one gains or loses relative to each other, but it gives new-comers a chance to catch up by continuing to play well.
The weekly pot gets larger if more people do well because we add Dollars for every person who makes the grade that week. We want to encourage more people to join and play well.
Earning Dollars by inviting friends
If you invite anyone to join the app and they predict well, they will earn Dollars. In fact it's exactly those kinds of talented people we want - so we will give you 20% of their rewards as a bonus, forever! They don't lose anything but you can gain a lot!
There is no limit to the number of people you can invite. To invite someone, just have them click on your personal "Supporter Link" before they join. You can share it anyway you want: chat, mail, FB, etc. You can find your Supporter Link in the application itself, in the Social tab.
Learn more in the Supporters section
How do I withdraw my earnings?
If you want to withdraw your earnings, you may transfer your Dollars to TIQL tiql.co and convert them into TQ Dollars. You will need to have a valid TIQL account and then choose the option to transfer your Dollars from SparkProfit. You can bet with TQ Dollars in almost exactly the same way you bet with US Dollars. Please be aware that some restrictions and special conditions will apply, as we may notify you from time to time.
How long does a game last?
As long or as short as you want! Once you've made your prediction you can stay and watch your score change as people around the world buy or sell, moving the price closer or further from your target. There is no need to hang around though if you're busy: you can simply log back in anytime to see where it is, or ask to be notified when the market hits your levels.
All games must follow the underlying market's trading hours and we do stop all games on a Friday night.
|Bitcoin||Friday 9:30pm UTC||Friday 9:00pm UTC|
|FX (common currencies)||Sunday 11:00pm UTC||Friday 9:00pm UTC|
|Stock Indices||Sunday 11:00pm UTC||Friday 9:00pm UTC|
There are usually a couple of half-day breaks at the end of each year too.
Can I kill the app?
Once you've started your prediction, it will be handled by our servers. So you don't need to leave the app running - it will still be earning points even if you are offline.
Why do games stop on a Friday night?
This is when most financial markets stop, so we chose this point to close your positions and make a definitive total score for the week.
In the future we plan to mark your positions to market, which would mean that your positions can be left ready for the next week. However you won't be able to start or stop positions while the underlying market is closed - just like the real markets!
I tried the tutorial in the app and I still don't understand how to use it
Oops, sorry about that! It's really a lot simpler than you might imagine. We made a 3 minute video that explains how to use Spark Profit.
The key points are that
- You first set a profit price and then set a loss price
- When the market moves it will eventually hit one of those prices: whichever it hits first determines whether you win or lose points in that game
- The closer you set a price the more likely it is to be hit but the less points you can win (or lose).
- You can also stop games at any time and take a smaller profit or loss.
- If the market itself closes (as it does every weekend) then it's just as if you stopped the game yourself and you will receive the smaller profit or loss
- Starting a new game costs some points
- But amendments are free
The blue line shows how the price of the market changed until now. You simply need to guess where it's going next. The timescale for your prediction can be as long or short as you like, up until the next market close. (Market closes are shown as a vertical black bar on the graph). So if you think the price will go up, click on the right side of the screen above the current price.
You must pay some of your points to make a new prediction, but new joiners get a discount. You will see the cost once you've clicked, before you send your prediction.
Once you have clicked above the current price it will also show a green horizontal line. This is your profit line - when the market hits it, that game ends and you get a payout. You must choose where to put your profit line. The closer it is to the current price, the more likely it is to pay out but it will pay less points. Conversely if you set a price that is far away you can win lots of points if you're right... but it's less likely to make it that far, and you risk it going the other way before you can win. This is just the way markets work! Ideally you'd want to set the profit line at the farthest price that you believe the market will reach before it starts to turn around.
Once you're happy with the profit line, click on the "Next" button at the bottom of the screen. Now you will see an additional red "loss" line. It behaves in a very similar way to the profit line, except that you will lose the given number of points if it gets hit first. You can set the loss line close to avoid losing lots of points - but you are more likely to have it happen. Or you can set your loss line far away so that it probably won't get hit... but if it does you will lose a lot of points!
Once you're happy with where the profit and loss lines are, click "Start" to send the information to our servers and start the game. Now you just need to come back later to see how you've done.
How do scores work?
Each prediction you make uses our advanced trading simulator to generate trading returns based on the actual market movement. Those trading returns, after subtracting realistic costs, are converted into the score you see.
Thus each game has several elements to the score:
- There is an initial cost to make a prediction. This corresponds to our estimation of your transaction costs.
- You can win or lose points according to whether the market did as you predicted
- There can be a small bonus for certain games if you were right and didn't stop or amend halfway through. This happens when the initial estimated transaction costs are higher than we ended up needing to pay.
It's also worth knowing that your total score will never go below zero, no matter how much you lose in a single game. So if you have a bad run, or are simply new and learning, it's easy to pick yourself up and start off again.
Do scores get wiped at the end of the week?
No, we don't reset your score at the end of the week. In fact we carry over 95% of your score to the next week, to help you maintain a higher score and earn more.
For example, if you had 50,000 points at the end of the week you would earn money on those points, then we'd carry over a score of 47,500 to start the next week.
How do scores translate into rewards?
We start the explanation in Earning Dollars by predicting well.
The upshot of all this is that if you double your score, you will more than double your rewards, assuming nothing else changes.
The easiest way to see it in action is to look and see what everyone else is earning! Open the app and click on "Social" at the bottom, then the 🏆 icon at the top. You will see this week's top 100 earners and the scores that got them there.
What is Reality?
Reality is a multiplier we use to adjust your losses. Here's the formula which uses it and explains it:
Where Reality =
minimum of (total score / 10,000) and (1), if returns < costs
In real terms (hah!) what this means is that when you first start off and have a low total score, it's easy to win points but hard to lose them. However as your total score increases towards the magic value of 10,000 the system becomes more and more balanced. When your total score hits the magic value it means that your losses are 100% realistic, just like your gains.
We didn't need to do this! At the time of writing, no other trading or market simulator does this - although we expect to see some people copy us in the future. But we know that when you're starting off there's so much to learn and to try out that it's just unfair and more than slightly depressing to see your honest mistakes count against you. We're nice like that.
The upshot of all this is that your most important goal is to reach 100% Reality and then try and stay there! Increase your score and build up as big a buffer as you can.
Can scores change?
Of course while the game is still active scores change constantly to reflect the latest prices. Once a game is finished however, your score is final.
CONTROLLING YOUR PREDICTIONS
What controls are there?
Stopping your prediction
Just click on the [STOP] button in the graph. It might take a second or so to confirm, during which time the price can change. These are real markets!
Amending your prediction
Amend just means change! You can change the target price or the stop price. You won't need to pay points to do it either. However, you can't amend an upwards prediction to point down or a downwards prediction to point up. Instead you'll need to stop it first and make a new prediction for the opposite direction.
My score changed when I stopped the prediction!
While your prediction is active, in the graph view we only show the
market returns (how much score you will gain/lose from the market's
price movement). If the market is completely unchanged, for
instance, you would see
However as soon as the prediction stops, we also include the initial
cost and the optional bonus in that figure. This matches
what you see in your History view and so on. So for the unchanged
market movement which had shown
0, you would probably now see
a negative overall score for that prediction (equal to the
initial cost you paid to make the prediction).
I have a Rejected prediction. What does it mean?
Sometimes we find a problem when you send a prediction. It's very rare. Usually it's from things like the price moving very quickly. The rejected predictions won't win or lose any points so they can be safely ignored.
Why not just let us buy and sell, like other trading systems?
The beauty of Spark Profit is that you can pick it up for 20 seconds and then leave it alone for as long as you want. Simple buying and selling requires you to come back regularly and check up on the markets, and not everyone can or wants to do that. Spark Profit frees you from that worry - but equally, if you have the time and desire to check back more often, it still gives you the chance to review and resend your prediction to potentially get more points.
But I want to be a trader. Shouldn't I learn to buy/sell?
Sending orders to buy and sell is a useful skill, indeed it's probably the second most basic of all trading skills. But increasingly, it's not a necessary skill as you can use computers to do the nuts-and-bolts stuff while you focus on the real value-added, the stuff computers cannot do.
To take an analogy, even the cheapest car hides some very complicated engineering behind a nice simple interface, especially now that most new cars use automatic gearboxes. The most important thing about driving is making sure you're going in the right direction, not worrying about how it's doing that.
Oh, trading's most basic skill? Having an opinion.
How do I know if I'm good at trading?
Points are a realistic simulation of real trading returns. So the more points you can make - in the shortest amount of time, with the least volatility - the better a trader you are.
Inside the app itself, we have a proprietary skill rating to condense these factors into a single rating. Your skill rating is based on every prediction you've made since joining. The higher the skill rating, the better a trader you are. Of course people's skill changes over time, and we plan to add more indicators for different timescales. We also show you your Sharpe Ratio, which is a standard measurement of trading skill.
How do I get better?
Play! In both senses of the word: make lots of predictions and while you're doing it, try out different theories. Also use the social tab to look at other players' games to see how they do it.
Who are all the users called "Guest12345"?
When you join Spark Profit on a mobile device you do not need to supply an email address at first. However without an email address we won't let you choose your own user name. Instead you'll get a unique guest name which you can change later, once you've registered your email address.
Who should I invite?
Everyone you can! We strongly believe that good traders are spread throughout the population and that often they don't know the skills they have hiding inside. So rather than specifically recommending to people who you think might be interested in finance, or games, just ask anyone and everyone!
How can I see my list of supporters?
On the 👤Me tab click the eye icon at the top.
One of my supporters is missing!
We use some pretty clever techniques to make sure that you get the credit for anyone joining via your link but sometimes links do get lost. If someone you invited is not listed please ask the person you invited to email [email protected] from the registered email address telling us who invited them (that's you!).
What do you do with my email address?
We only use your email to send you notifications that your profile says you wish to receive. We only use it for Spark Profit related notifications. We do not sell any of your personal information to a third party.
Why do you need to send me an SMS?
It's one of the ways we make sure people are only opening one account. We only send a confirmation code to it. We do not sell any of your personal information to a third party or send additional messages without getting your explicit approval ("opt-in") later.
Why do you need my mobile identity?
Your mobile identity is a single unique number that identifies your mobile device, much like a house number on a street identifies your house. Just like the house number allows someone to ring the doorbell and get the attention of whoever is living there, so the mobile identity allows us to send notifications.
The mobile identity does not allow us to see any personal details about you or see any of the private data stored on your phone.
What notifications do you send?
By default we will notify you when someone mentions you in the in-app chat, and also the first time the market price gets close to either one of a prediction's target or stop prices. All notification types can be controlled individually in your account settings.
NEWS & CHAT
When can I post?
You need to have verified your account and have at least 20,000 points.
What can I post?
The news tab is for sharing ideas that you think will help others understand and accurately predict the markets. It's a public forum for demonstrating your expertise and asking for help. We created SparkProfit to give an opportunity for everyone around the world to get involved and learn new skills. We are totally committed to diversity and empowerment -- and we expect our players to show the same respect for each other as well.
We reserve the right to remove points, or even close accounts, of users who choose to comments that we feel breach these rules.
What is the "Grandma" rule?
If you're ever unsure whether you should post something, just ask yourself: would you say it to your Grandma? If you would be embarrassed to say it to her, you shouldn't be saying it on the news channel either!
MANAGING YOUR ACCOUNT
How do I change my email address?
Login to the application and use the ⏶ icon on the bottom right to open the "Options" tab, then the icon on the top right to access your profile. Enter your new email address in the box. You will probably want to verify it straight away to make sure you remain eligible to receive skill rewards and supporter bonuses!
But I never set my password!
You're right! When you create an account it's tied to that device - we don't ask you to set a password because you don't need one. However if you want to move to another device you'll need to set your email address, if you have not already. Once that's done it's very easy to set your password to whatever you want, and then login anywhere.
How do I reset my password?
You can reset your password from the app. Open the app and click Log In. Enter the email you registered with and then you can click the Change Password button. We will then send an email to you with a link to reset your password. If you do not get an email it's probably because you entered an incorrect email.
How do I close my account?
Just send an email to [email protected] from your registered email address. But why would you want to?
My question isn't answered / your answer is wrong!
Send us a mail and we'll respond to you personally. Can't say fairer than that!