Tuesday 5 July 2016

What's your trading edge?


  1. temperament,

    Thanks for sharing!

    "Hantam bola" as an edge. That's cool.

    Throw shit on the wall and I guess some will stick!


    After 4 years of pain for Johnny-come-lately gold bugs, finally market has shown some life for these under water gold bugs to have renewed hope gold can retake $1800 so they can finally breakeven!

  2. temperament,


    You are a physical gold trading veteran!

    Now its a lot "easier" with Gold ETFs - although the gold purists will say anything not physical is just another paper financial instrument ;)

    I bow in deference to you.

    During end 2011, when gold and silver went ballistic, there were 2 major camps when it comes to money printing - those who say its inflationary; and those who say its deflationary.

    The deflationary camp won as gold and all commodities went into a swan dive.

    The inflationary camp also won as stocks and properties continue to march higher.

    I wonder what the debate will be in 2016 with more negative interest rates and helicopter money planned ;)

    Inflationary or deflationary?

  3. Hello,

    In the 80s where got Microsoft Money?

    Computers just started to be introduced in corporations.

    At most if you early adopter you'll be using DOS based Lotus 123 spreadsheets ;)

    My first time touching a computer was in NS during 1986.

    Nostalgia - IBM AT with Dbase III, Lotus 123, WordStar, and the quaint green screen monitor!

  4. respect. "Just like i capture all my stock transactions since 1987/8 UTD."

    1. SMK,


      I have a recording "gap" for the first 2 years of my investing journey.

      Only started to record in excel and throw away the transaction slips when I realised the usefulness of a trading journal and investing diary :)

    2. temperament,

      You are like my mom - she never throws away anything!

      I can try to picture your study with lots of shoe boxes of past transaction receipts. 1987 leh!!!

      How about receipts for TV, furniture, refrigerator? You got keep them also?

    3. Sorli, sorli!

      People buy Maple Leaf ounces; you buy Kilo gold bars.

      I slap my mouth. Piak!

      You have done ITE graduates proud :)

  5. i think a lot of factors influenced - anaemic demand, speed of rate cuts, coordinated rate cuts ..etc

    however, I still feel money printing is inflationary. effects just delayed. so I am biased towards inflationary assets now.

    nevertheless, let the markets guide us.

    "During end 2011, when gold and silver went ballistic, there were 2 major camps when it comes to money printing - those who say its inflationary; and those who say its deflationary."

  6. SMK,

    Both camps won. Well sort of ;)

    It's easier to understand the inflationary arguments (textbook case mah), but I was busy taking notes from the deflationary camp as these were independent thinkers who were not afraid to go against the crowd - the consensus inflationary crowd did not foresee gold going back below $1200 and WTI crude below $30 during end 2011 ;)

    Even today, after so much money printing and negative rates from Abenomics, Japan has yet to achieve escape velocity from deflation.

    That's the beauty of investing with or without convictions.

    100% all-in bet is conviction.

    Me? I not so sure of my insights; I hedge my bets ;)

  7. temperament,

    No worries. We are both "一国".

    Agar agar du hor (in Teochew); we don't need precision in 4 decimal places ;)

    Better take good care of your Microsoft Money CDs. Who knows? Maybe one day can be worth money to a collector of nostalgia softwares?

  8. Stop digging ;)

    "i think i must have traded some of the gold bars in UOB gold trading account"


  9. Don't know how to trade so no edge for me at all:(

    If I trade, I will be push to the edge:p

    1. PassivePeon,

      A very sensible answer!

      If you have been trading for sometime, you would have reversed the order:

      No edge; no trade.


    2. Hi SMOL,

      Hahah. Guess it'll take a very long time before I start trading then.

      I can't see a single trace of any edge that I possess right now😂

      Or perhaps I can try the "crash got sound" method and develop a subconscious edge🤔

    3. PassivePeon,

      That's the classic trader's dilemma:

      No edge; no trade.

      But no trade how to find one's edge?

    4. Wow SMOL,

      It just hit me.

      There's a lot of things where we have to do it first before we can develop the edge. Important thing is to develop that edge.

      If we keep repeating without developing, then we honestly deserve to be push to the edge😛

    5. PassivePeon,

      When you have spent more than 10,000 hours investing, revisit this question again.

      That's why some have chosen the Passive Indexing route after they stop telling little lies to themselves ;)

      While some continue to do the same thing over and over again...

    6. Hai hai! Noted on the 10,000hrs to be a master.

      I'll come back to you when I'm a MasterPeon.

      Notice that I used When instead of If?😛

  10. temperament,

    And that's the difference between those who believe in 5 minutes a day and those of us who believe in craftsmanship ;)

  11. OK, OK.

    Just teasing you.

    A bit ridiculous to call 1 gram gold a "bar"...

    Wind blow can fly!


  12. temperament,

    Actually, having a few kilo bars is not exactly out of your reach in the 90s.

    Look, if we don't buy a car, we can already afford a few kilo bars ;)

  13. wah temperament, can tan chia liao! well said.

  14. temperament,

    To me, we just need enough gold to buy a plane or boat ticket - that's all.

    Too much, sure kenna rob during fiat money crisis - unless we got private army like some land owners in some of our neighbouring countries.

    Those who like to wear gold on their bodies will have a head start. Anytime "run road" also can!

    If we have to rush home to our safes, too late :(

    Plane or boat left liao...

  15. Eh?

    Look who's back!?

    Our trader friend has finally returned :)

    Miss you bro!

  16. temperament,

    Actually, we sometimes can be a bit drama.

    This is nothing new - fiat money crisis.

    Just look at those countries in Asia with lots of zeroes behind their bank notes and we'll know they have been through hyper-inflation in their history.

    History does not repeat; but it rhymes ;)

    Who says Arts background no use?

  17. i did not disappear, i just follow you guys. but flankly hardly find any interesting trading topic to talk about, its all i care about haha...

    on the contrary, being very busy lately, trading and system development, feeling more and more like a pro, did very well for the past one year!

    on the other hand, the overall portfolio seems to be stuck in the mud, i never able to really break through, i feel i probably have reach my limit, constantly trying to find a way out and find myself back to square one haha......

  18. the day brexit happen, in the early hour of our time, the market tank and caught me by total surprise! i was long and i went even longer, fortunately! now i'm already net short haha....

    if a week or two the market still hold on than i will reverse to go long again, no hurry.

  19. coconut,

    Wow! So you were the ones who took the other side of the trade of Brexit (went long) and made money!

    I must say I was scratching my head and going, "Lucky I did not chase the market by going short!"

    Hence I can enjoy the view from a "detached" perspective like the "mountain".

  20. coconut,

    I spent less time trading first half of 2016. Mostly on the sidelines.

    Waiting, waiting, and waiting for a catalyst.

    Finally Brexit and the bond market now calling the Fed's bluff to hike rates this year, I think I can finally do some trading 2nd half of 2016.

    I hope ;)

  21. I have no trading edge!! Trading isn't suitable for my character, and most certainly not my circle of competence.

    1. Kevin,

      Well, that's knowing oneself!

      It's like me reading articles that say knowing how to "code" is the next big career opportunity.

      If I were 18 all over again, it won't change a thing. I'm a people person, I'll still choose a profession that deals with people.

      Trading? It's everything to do with people sentiments ;)

      I suspect quite a few of the middle-aged disgruntled engineers out there are those who don't really like engineering...

      They chose it because of they can't get into medicine or law. Or they thought being an engineer pays well forever and ever.

      It's all for the money. And we wonder why we have mid-life crisis or the need to invest to escape...

      Do what we like and have competent in :)

      Now we have authors that say there's no money in doing so. So? At least we don't have ulcers or depressions!

    2. temperament, we all expect the vote to pass and uk stay in euro isn't it? the market certainly think so and had been up for a while.

      when the first result or indicator saying otherwise, the US futures took a dive even before our market open! i thought, what can be wrong if uk is out, no big deal isn't it, so i took all the orders in that morning, but i quickly turn around and started selling as soon as i bot. now as of today i'm net short! why? don't ask me! i didn't expect the market to recovered in this fashion haha.

  22. Hi SMOL,

    A bit late to this party, haha :)

    In my wilder days, I was trading warrants. My edge was that I was young and reckless. It worked out slightly positive for me.

    Then I went into investing and my edge is that I realised I don't have an edge. I couldn't dig deep enough and felt limited by my superficial knowledge of accounting which I had read on a Dummy's guide. It's just bluffing myself. I averaged down on some s-chip that is 'deeply valued' and lost terribly.

    Next is my futures trading. I learn some fancy divergence trick and I thought that was it - the holy grail to trading. Then I crashed and burnt in my small trading account. I didn't know position sizing, was over trading and didn't follow the rules as well as I would have liked. My edge then was that I reflected what was suitable for me and what wasn't and realised that I can marry both FA which is half bucket for me with my divergence system which I am getting better at. I also knew then that the holy grail is not to search for better tools for trading or better system - it's simply to know your system so damn well that you know the limitations of it.

    I came out of the woods a little more enlightened.

    Back to now. What's my edge? It's that I don't need to trade for a living and that's the ultimate edge that I could ever have.

    1. LP!!!

      1. This one I must highlight for the young caterpillars out there:

      "I also knew then that the holy grail is not to search for better tools for trading or better system - it's simply to know your system so damn well that you know the limitations of it."

      2. Look out for my next post ;)

  23. Hi SMOL,

    I dont know what's my trading edge..maybe because i've not been trading long enough or well enough to consider myself having an edge!

  24. temperament, you ask me whats my edge this time? what a funny question. the edge i have this time, if any, will be the same as in my last trade, and will be the same as in future trading ma.

    1. temperament,

      Edge is an "advantage" or "odds favouring you" kind of thing.

      It does not mean win all the time.

      A professional poker player can still lose to an amateur on one hand if the amateur had better "luck" with his cards. But over many hands, the pro poker player will eventually win ;)

      Yes, spotting an opportunity before everyone else is an edge! It's first mover advantage :)

      And that "edge" can come from working in the industry (Rolf), diligent study (CW read all the investing books in library? And is still reading!), or big baxxs (coconut)...

      We all know what "edge" we have in school or in work. Yes, its that kind of "edge"!


    2. Oh that edge !! SMOL...

      Oh... My edge might be in someone perspective an weakness

    3. My edge is in knowl-edge.

      Self-knowledge that is.

      All mastery, including of course trading mastery, requires deep self-knowledge.

      If I want (trading) life to flow with ease and grace, I have to first learn about the true nature of my being with all my mental flaws and those of the world around me.

      I am not even half way done with it.

      That’s why my trading ‘portfolio’ consists only of risk capital and not savings. There is a huge difference between the two.

      Oh, and I have another edge. I h-edge.

    4. Sillyinvestor,

      That's why the question is what's YOUR edge.

      Not what other people think of your edge ;)

    5. Andy,

      Finally someone who practices hedging!

      The same "financially savvy" person who buys and preaches the importance of life, medical, disability, and what not insurances - is frequently the same person who never buys "insurance" when it comes to trading!?

      Talk about inconsistencies!

      Or maybe lack of self-knowledge ;)

  25. Wah all quite 'conservative' in their edges

    1. SMK,

      Some are being modest; some are not showing their last card ;)

  26. Andy - knowledge is power!

    Jared - my trading edge is not in stock market, instead in real business. Since young, I catch spiders to sell, also won stickers, erasers to sell also. Then also buy and sell some polo t shirts which my sis can get at a discount as a staff to sell to my schoolmates also.

    When in career, I did several out of the box buy and sell deals that help the company earns some money too!

    Hmm...so to me, we must go back to the word of trading which since ancient times is of great importance, AND NOT JUST IN STOCK MARKET LAR....


    And my trading edge is to stand at the edge when the masses take sides, and take sides when masses hibernate! So basically just don't do what the mainstream is doing and don't think what the mainstream is thinking... maybe so far this always work for me!

    1. Rolf,

      I only asked what's your TRADING edge.

      You are the one who making the distinction. Wink.

      Trading is just buy and sell :)

      Some trade coins, some trade spices, some trade properties, some trade currencies, some trade bonds.

      The stock market is DEFINTELY not the biggest trading market globally ;)

    2. I asked myself this question (and on Twitter) the other day. If I had to boil it down to three factors, I'd say:

      1) Self-knowledge.
      2) Keeping expectation in check.
      3) Staying optimistic.

      Very important question to be deeply pondered IMO.


    3. Hi James,

      Not everyday we get a trading comrade from Europe responding!


      After a bad patch or some serious drawdowns, I often question why the hell am I doing this to myself ???

      Maybe I have a masochistic streak?


    4. Jared - aiyo.. I m just saying generally to the rest of comments trading edge not just in stock market (since most refer to stocks) not specifically refering to ur question.

      Remember sharing for the greater good n not poking for the individual satisfaction! "I m not bleeding heart!" ...

      Yes, u r right, stock market is not the greatest trading place. In fact seaports n airports are...

    5. LOL!

      That's the limitation of using "Jared -"

      "You talking to me?" No wonder this Robert De Niro is so famous!

  27. Hee hee.

    Put it nicely (好听的话), I'm good at facilitating or encouraging others to speak up.

    But if we tell it bluntly (难听的话), I'm good at stirring shit!



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