Posts filed under “Apprenticed Investor”
No one knows the future, but we can play the odds when they are in our favor.
Today was one of those days.
What was looking like a shaky retest now looks like a reverse head & shoulders low (or a triple bottom). For those of you who have been paying attention to both the broader market theories espoused here, as well as the specific trading dynamics, there was money to be made in this environment.
If you made the difficult trade and saw some portfolio net gains, congratulations — go buy yourself something nice.
If you did not participate because your methodology does not involve active trading or market timing, congratulations for sticking to your discipline.
Everyone else should be trying to figure out what today meant. Was this a repeatable set up? Are there clues you may have missed? What lessons there are to be learned from recent action?
Markets have come increasingly close to their October 10th lows. Contrary to what you may have read or heard on TV, this is precisely as it should be. Why? Major lows get retested. That is a basic tenet of market behavior, and crowd psychology. (This has been verified by a variety of studies by different…Read More
Note my 5 stages of grief meme has taken hold:
The five stages of death are denial, anger, bargaining, depression and finally, acceptance. We bring it up, because right now, Wall Street is really struggling with that last one, acceptance.
We’re talking about the death of that time honored investment strategy, buy-and-hold. Investors just can’t let go, and they need to.
Thanks to black October, the S&P 500 has now lost a fifth of its value over the last 10 years. According to Jeff Macke, “2008 is the year that will go down in history as the year that long term investment died as a thesis.”
And that means it’s time to move on.
But just because buy-and-hold is pretty much dead and buried, that doesn’t mean you can’t make money anymore.
The Death of Buy and Hold
Taleb’s top life tips
1. Scepticism is effortful and costly. It is better to be sceptical about matters of large consequences, and be imperfect, foolish and human in the small and the aesthetic.
2. Go to parties. You can’t even start to know what you may find on the envelope of serendipity. If you suffer from agoraphobia, send colleagues.
3. It’s not a good idea to take a forecast from someone wearing a tie. If possible, tease people who take themselves and their knowledge too seriously.
4. Wear your best for your execution and stand dignified. Your last recourse against randomness is how you act — if you can’t control outcomes, you can control the elegance of your behaviour. You will always have the last word.
5. Don’t disturb complicated systems that have been around for a very long time. We don’t understand their logic. Don’t pollute the planet. Leave it the way we found it, regardless of scientific ‘evidence’.
6. Learn to fail with pride — and do so fast and cleanly. Maximise trial and error — by mastering the error part.
7. Avoid losers. If you hear someone use the words ‘impossible’, ‘never’, ‘too difficult’ too often, drop him or her from your social network. Never take ‘no’ for an answer (conversely, take most ‘yeses’ as ‘most probably’).
8. Don’t read newspapers for the news (just for the gossip and, of course, profiles of authors). The best filter to know if the news matters is if you hear it in cafes, restaurants… or (again) parties.
9. Hard work will get you a professorship or a BMW. You need both work and luck for a Booker, a Nobel or a private jet.
10. Answer e-mails from junior people before more senior ones. Junior people have further to go and tend to remember who slighted them.
click for video
Nassim Nicholas Taleb: the prophet of boom and doom
The Sunday Times, June 1, 2008