8 Trading Psychology Quotes

Your biggest enemy, when trading, is within yourself. Success will only come when you learn to control your emotions. Edwin Lefevre’s Reminiscences of a Stock Operator (1923) offers advice that still applies today.

  1. CautionExcitement (and fear of missing an opportunity) often persuade us to enter the market before it is safe to do so. After a down-trend a number of rallies may fail before one eventually carries through. Likewise, the emotional high of a profitable trade may blind us to signs that the trend is reversing.
  2. PatienceWait for the right market conditions before trading. There are times when it is wise to stay out of the market and observe from the sidelines.
  3. ConvictionHave the courage of your convictions: Take steps to protect your profits when you see that a trend is weakening, but sit tight and don’t let fear of losing part of your profit cloud your judgment. There is a good chance that the trend will resume its upward climb. (more…)

Control Your Emotions

1. Caution.

Excitement (and fear of missing an opportunity) often persuade us to enter the market before it is safe to do so. After a down-trend a number of rallies may fail before one eventually carries through. Likewise, the emotional high of a profitable trade may blind us to signs that the trend is reversing.

2. Patience.

Wait for the right market conditions before trading. There are times when it is wise to stay out of the market and observe from the sidelines.

3. Conviction.

Have the courage of your convictions: Take steps to protect your profits when you see that a trend is weakening, but sit tight and don’t let fear of losing part of your profit cloud your judgment. There is a good chance that the trend will resume its upward climb.

4. Detachment.

Concentrate on the technical aspects rather than on the money. If your trades are technically correct, the profits will follow.

Stay emotionally detached from the market. Avoid getting caught up in the short-term excitement. Screen-watching is a tell-tale sign: if you continually check prices or stare at charts for hours it is a sign that you are unsure of your strategy and are likely to suffer losses.

5. Focus

Focus on the longer time frames and do not try to catch every short-term fluctuation. The most profitable trades are in catching the large trends. (more…)

Laws of Speculation

1. Never Overtrade. To take an interest larger than the capital justifies is to invite disaster. With such an interest a fluctuation in the market unnerves the operator, and his judgment becomes worthless.

2. Never “Double Up”; that is, never completely and at once reverse a position. Being “long,” for instance, do not “sell out” and go as much “short.” This may occasionally succeed, but is very hazardous, for should the market begin again to advance, the mind reverts to its original opinion and the speculator “covers up” and “goes long” again. Should this last change be wrong, complete demoralization ensues. The change in the original position should have been made moderately, cautiously, thus keeping the judgment clear and preserving the balance of the mind.

3. “Run Quickly,” or not at all; that is to say, act promptly at the first approach of danger, but failing to do this until others see the danger, hold on or close out part of the “interest.”

4. Another rule is, when doubtful, reduce the amount of the interest; for either the mind is not satisfied with the position taken, or the interest is too large for safety. One man told another that he could not sleep on account of his position in the market: his friend judiciously and laconically replied: “Sell down to a sleeping point.”

Trading Psychology

Your biggest enemy, when trading, is within yourself. Success will only  come when you learn to control your emotions. Edwin Lefevre’s

 Reminiscences of a Stock Operator (1923) offers advice that still applies  today.

 Caution
 Excitement (and fear of missing an opportunity) often persuade us to enter the market  before it is safe to do so. After a down-trend a number of rallies may fail before one  eventually carries through. Likewise, the emotional high of a profitable trade may blind  us to signs that the trend is reversing.

 Patience
 Wait for the right market conditions before trading. There are times when it is wise to  stay out of the market and observe from the sidelines.

 Conviction
 Have the courage of your convictions: Take steps to protect your profits when you see  that a trend is weakening, but sit tight and don’t let fear of losing part of your profit  cloud your judgment. There is a good chance that the trend will resume its upward  climb.

 Detachment
 Concentrate on the technical aspects rather than on the money. If your trades are  technically correct, the profits will follow.

 Stay emotionally detached from the market. Avoid getting caught up in the short-term  excitement. Screen-watching is a tell-tale sign: if you continually check prices or stare at  charts for hours it is a sign that you are unsure of your strategy and are likely to suffer  losses.

 Focus
 Focus on the longer time frames and do not try to catch every short-term fluctuation.  The most profitable trades are in catching the large trends.

 Expect the unexpected
 Investing involves dealing with probabilities ? not certainties. No one can predict the  market correctly every time. Avoid gamblers? logic.

 Average up – not down
 If you increase your position when price goes against you, you are liable to compound  your losses. When price starts to move it is likely to continue in that direction. Rather  increase your exposure when the market proves you right and moves in your favor.

 Limit your losses
 Use stop-losses to protect your funds. When the stop loss is triggered, act immediately 
 – don’t hesitate.

 The biggest mistake you can make is to hold on to falling stocks, hoping for a recovery.  Falling stocks have a habit of declining way below what you expected them to.  Eventually you are forced to sell, decimating your capital.

 Human nature being what it is, most traders and investors ignore these  rules when they first start out. It can be an expensive lesson.

 Control your emotions and avoid being swept along with the crowd. Make consistent  decisions based on sound technical analysis.

legendary speculator Jesse Livermore

legendary speculator Jesse Livermore on LETTING YOUR WINNERS RUN

(Chapter V) … “I think it was a long step forward in my trading education when I realized at last that when old Mr. Partridge kept on telling the other customers, “Well, you know this is a bull market!” he really meant to tell them that the big money was not in the individual fluctuations but in the main movements – that is, not in reading the tape but in sizing up the entire market and its trend.”

In all of “Reminiscences” this crucial idea that the Really Big Money is always earned by prudently riding the large trends over time and not in day trading every minute fluctuation is one of the central themes of the book.

“be right and sit tight”

(Chapter V) … “And right here let me say one thing: After spending many years in Wall Street and after making and losing millions of dollars I want to tell you this: It never was my thinking that made the big money for me. It always was my sitting. Got that? My sitting tight! It is no trick at all to be right on the market. You always find lots of early bulls in bull markets and early bears in bear markets. I’ve known many men who were right at exactly the right time, and began buying and selling stocks when prices were at the very level which should show the greatest profit. And their experience invariably matched mine – that is, they made no real money out of it. Men who can both be right and sit tight are uncommon. I found it one of the hardest things to learn. But it is only after a stock operator has firmly grasped this that he can make big money. It is literally true that millions come easier to a trader after he knows how to trade than hundreds did in the days of his ignorance.” (more…)

Trading Wisdom – Jesse Livermore

“I think it was a long step forward in my trading education when I realized at last that when old Mr. Partridge kept on telling the other customers, “Well, you know this is a bull market!” he really meant to tell them that the big money was not in the individual fluctuations but in the main movements – that is, not in reading the tape but in sizing up the entire market and its trend.”

In all of “Reminiscences” this crucial idea that the Really Big Money is always earned by prudently riding the large trends over time and not in day trading every minute fluctuation is one of the central themes of the book. Livermore hammers this again and again, attacking it from countless angles and spicing up all of his amazing lessons with his own enthralling personal experiences.

This old and successful speculator that Livermore mentions, Mr. Partridge, would always politely tell the younger speculators who asked him trading questions that it was a bull market. The young speculators were always eager to trade, but Partridge was old and battle-scarred enough to know that no mere mortal could even hope to catch every individual fluctuation so the wisest strategy was just to ride the major trends. His simple reply, which would annoy the youngsters since they couldn’t yet perceive the deep wisdom in it, was to subtly advise them to just ride the primary trend and not worry about rapid-fire trading.

If a particular market happens to be in a primary bull trend, then just be long and don’t worry about trying to interpret and trade upon the essentially random day-to-day market noise. If a particular market is in a primary bear trend, then either sit out in cash or stay short and wait for the trend to fully mature and run its course. Don’t try to frantically outguess the primary trend everyday, just accept it and trade with it and you will win in the end.

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