Trading Psychology Observations

-From working with developing traders, I’d say that 90% don’t/can’t sustain the process of keeping a substantive journal. Among the group that does journal, well over 90% of the entries are about themselves and their P/L. I almost never see journal entries devoted to figuring out markets.

-A sizable proportion of traders who have been having problems are trading methods and patterns that used to work, but are no longer operative. The inability to change with changing markets affects traders intraday (when volume/volatility/trend patterns shift) and over longer time frames (when intermarket patterns shift).

-Some traders habitually look for tops in a rising market and bottoms in a falling one. There’s much to be said for countertrend methods, but not when the need to be right exceeds the need to make money.

-An underrated element in trading success is mental flexibility: the ability to shift views and perceptions as new data enter the marketplace. It takes a certain lack of ego to form a strong view and then modify it in the face of new evidence.

-Many traders fail because they’re focused on what the market *should* be doing, rather than on what it *is* doing. The stock market leads, not follows, economic fundamentals. Some of the best investment opportunities occur when markets are looking past news, positive or negative.

John Murphy’s Ten Laws of Technical Trading

Which way is the market moving? How far up or down will it go? And when will it go the other way? These are the basic concerns of the technical analyst. Behind the charts and graphs and mathematical formulas used to analyze market trends are some basic concepts that apply to most of the theories employed by today’s technical analysts.”

The following are John’s ten most important rules of technical trading:

• Map the Trends
• Spot the Trend and Go With It
• Find the Low and High of It
• Know How Far to Backtrack
• Draw the Line
• Follow That Average
• Learn the Turns
• Know the Warning Signs
• Trend or Not a Trend?
• Know the Confirming Signs

Note: All of the following is the work of John Murphy (not me) (more…)

5 Naked Truth about Trading

  1. Anything can happen.
  2. Does not need to know what’s going to happen next to make money.
  3. Random distribution between wins and losses for any given set of variables that defines an edge
  4. Edge is nothing more than an indication of a higher probability of one thing happening over another
  5. Every moment in the market is unique.

If you truly believe in this as well, I’d encourage you to write this down and look at it every day before you look at your charts. Make it a point to remember, embrace and apply it.

Efficiency and Stability in Complex Financial Markets

Efficiency and Stability in Complex Financial Markets


The authors study a simple model of an asset market with informed and non-informed agents. In the absence of non-informed agents, the market becomes information efficient when the number of traders with different private information is large enough. Upon introducing non-informed agents, the authors find that the latter contribute significantly to the trading activity if and only if the market is (nearly) information efficient. This suggests that information efficiency might be a necessary condition for bubble phenomena – induced by the behavior of non-informed traders – or conversely that throwing some sands in the gears of financial markets may curb the occurrence of bubbles.

via Efficiency and Stability in Complex Financial Markets by Fabio Caccioli, Matteo Marsili :: SSRN.

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