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Showing posts from November, 2010

Thoughts on Human Nature and Speculation - Humphrey B. Neil

Marketplace Books has posted an excerpt from Humphrey B. Neil's Tape Reading & Market Tactics.

The chapter entitled, "More Thoughts on Human Nature and Speculation", includes some classic thinking on aspects of human psychology which prevent us from operating profitably in the markets. A passage from Neil on the dangers of greed follows this line of thought:

"...I have watched traders in brokers’ offices with deep interest, and have tried to learn the traits that crippled their profits. The desire to “make a killing”—greed—has impressed me particularly.Perhaps this desire to squeeze the last point out of a trade is the most difficult to fight against. It is also the most dangerous. How often has it happened in your own case that you have entered a commitment with a conservatively set goal, which your judgment has told you was reasonable, only to throw over your resolutions when your stock has reached that point, because you thought “there were four more poi…

StockTwits TV interviews Jim Rogers

Through the magic of Skype and the internet, Howard Lindzon interviews Jim Rogers on StockTwits TV and pitches him a barrage of questions sent in by StockTwits members.

Everything is up for discussion here, from Rogers' opinion on stocks and commodities, to his early days working on Wall Street and running a hedge fund, as well as his more recent adventures. Also, plenty of focus on family life and raising his kids (who speak Mandarin and English) in Singapore.

Enjoy the discussion, and Happy Thanksgiving!

Links: Insider trading, minimalist traders, & more

Here's what I'm reading and checking out today:

1. John Carney says, "The government's insider trading rules are still insane!"

2. 47 mind-blowing, psychology-proven facts you should know about yourself.

3. Lew Rockwell interviews Jim Grant, of Grant's Interest Rate Observer. Topics: the classical gold standard and Austrian economics.

4. Chicago Sean's series on The Minimalist Trader is inspired reading.

5. A way to "play" Mongolia? Part of a very cool series of posts on global investing from Adventures In Capitalism.

Stop by tomorrow, we may have a very interesting interview to share with you ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday. Until then, you can catch us on Twitter and StockTwits. Ciao!

The Gold Standard: an interview with Guilio Gallarotti

Wanted to share this McAlvany podcast entitled, "The Gold Standard: An Unwelcome Political Restraint. An Interview with Guilio Gallarotti".

Hat tip to Maoxian, who noted that Jim Grant recommended Gallarotti's book, The Anatomy of an International Monetary Regime: The Classical Gold Standard, 1800-1914, to better understand the workings of a gold standard monetary system.

As I said on Twitter the other night, there are some fascinating insights offered by Gallarotti in this interview, particularly in his discussion of how universal suffrage politicized economics during the 20th century. I'm sure you'll find much more of interest besides, so tune in to the interview above and enjoy.

GM's post-bailout IPO a disgusting "success"

Thankfully, I've not watched any of the TV hoopla surrounding General Motors' (or if you prefer, Government Motors') post-bailout IPO.

Still, I can't avoid the news of this event entirely, as I'm exposed to the GM news through my Twitter stream, StockTwits, and the recent posts from some bloggers I keep up with.

The disgusting spectacle of this government-engineered IPO (made possible with your taxpayer dollars) was but an ugly image in my mind until I found Greg Harmon's tweet on StockTwits' GM stream. Now I have the shocking, surreal life photo to go with it:


Subtlety is dead in America. You are being ripped off and the banner proclaiming it is staring you right in the face. It is a disgusting spectacle indeed, to see the announcement of GM's post-bailout IPO draped over the American flag and the columns of one of our most revered capitalist institutions, the NYSE.

Last night I read an article in which GM's CFO Chris Liddell described the then-upcomin…

Mid-day links and market news

Rounding up some of the more interesting news items and blog posts that I've come across this week. Set a spell and enjoy our mid-day linkfest.

1. Der Spiegel interviews rogue trader Jerome Kerviel: "I was merely a small cog in the machine".

2. John Paulson trims BofA stake, sells all Goldman Sachs shares.

3. David Tepper sold financials during his "everything will go up" speech on CNBC, but he was pretty honest about it, finds John Carney.

4. Huge Ireland linkfest and other news from Credit Writedowns.

5. Your StockTwits handle is the 21st century trading badge, writes Chicago Sean.

6. Derek Hernquist on the intersection of patience and speed, plus some wisdom from Dickson Watts.

7. If you follow me on Twitter and StockTwits, you probably know that Joe Fahmy (see blogroll) is one of my favorite stock traders to follow on the stream. Here's the most recent StockTwits TV ep. of The Next Big Move with Joe Fahmy. Always worth watching.

Thanks for stopping by. Reminder…

Classic quotes and timeless wisdom from, How They Succeeded

If you caught our last post on Wednesday, then you probably had a chance to glance through some of the 109-year-old wisdom found in Orison Swett Marden's collection of personal success stories from legendary businessmen and artists called, How They Succeeded.

Today, I thought I'd share a few key lessons and quotes from the book with you. Now, I've only read a few chapters of the book so far, so this is by no means a complete overview of greatest hits. The following are just a few choice ideas to whet your appetite for further reading. Here they are:



1. Marshall Field - Author Marden notes that the famed merchant's early career was off to an unremarkable start, until he decided to head West for Chicago. Field's climb was aided by, and linked with, the rapid growth of his adopted hometown.

"What were your equipments for success when you started as a clerk here in Chicago, in 1856?"

"Health and ambition, and I what I believe to be sound principles", an…

Who will be the Horatio Alger of China?

While searching for a classic trading text on Scribd, I came across this 109-year-old tome on the success of 19th and early 20th century entrepreneurs called, How They Succeeded, in the related books sidebar.

Looking through the table of contents, one finds an interesting array of business, artist, and educator profiles and plucky little subchapter titles emphasizing the virtues of hard work, thrift, and foresight. Admirable traits to be sure, though the Horatio Alger-type bootsrapping tales of personal success and luck are usually mocked in the politically correct schoolrooms of today.

How They Succeeded

For those of us schooled in the cynical view of free enterprise and the dastardly deeds of the robber barons (and most of us who attended American schools in the last 40 years were purposely imprinted with that bias), it may seem a bit comical to look at a chapter on John D. Rockerfeller and find subheading titles such as "His Early Dream and Purpose", "There Was Money In…

Mid-term elections and US stock returns

We tossed out a few links on US mid-term elections and their impact on stock prices in last month's view of global stock returns. Thought I'd include them here ahead of tomorrow's elections and offer you a quick overview.

1. Do midterm elections impact stock prices? - Fidelity touts the outperformance of large-cap and small-cap shares in the year following US mid-term elections.

Nice table included, which breaks down the election results and historical stock performance in times of party gridlock and party harmony.

2. Impact of mid-term elections on S&P 500 since 1990 - Nice Benzinga article that takes issue with the "tradable bottom" supposedly offered up in mid-term election years. Here is John Bougearel's take on the matter:

"Much of the statistical analysis surrounding the presidential cycle is misleading. Yes, there is some merit to the presidential cycle, but it is really tied to events exogenous to the elections themselves."

Actually, the…