Ralph Shell began his career as a grain trader for a large international grain trading firm. This involved negotiation of export contracts and moving grain and soy beans from the US to the export markets of the world. For a period, he also handled the companies hedging and trading activity in the pit of the Kansas City Board of Trade. After a short stint as a commodity analyst with Merrill Lynch in Chicago Shell began a career as analyst and trader on the floor of the Chicago Board of Trade. After trading on the floor for almost 20 years. the career continued as a broker trader away from the harsh Chicago climate. Commodity trading continued in the grains and other commodities, but the focus in recent years had been on the Forex markets.