Friday 5 May 2017

What's My Trading Edge?

I don't have to trade for a living.


  1. smol. that is certainly not an edge.

    1. in fact, i feel i need to trade for a living, there is nothing else i know and i wanted to do for a living.

    2. coconut,

      Of course it not a trading edge to you; its MINE trading edge!


  2. Do you know how hard its to trade for a living?

    Just ask those trading gurus who have to offer courses and/or subscription services to get another source of income.

    Why would they do so if their trading incomes were consistently PROFITABLE?

    My lifestyle is paid for by the investments side of the portfolio.

    As for my trading account, once I've seeded it with "$1", I've not added or taken a cent out. It has since grown to "$12" over these 4 years.

    An unintended benefit is it makes measuring trading performance simple like hell! None of that XIRR and NAV crap.

    But then, I don't measure my trading performance based on by-product consequential results.

    I measure how good my ENTIRES and EXITS were. Get them right, the profits will take care of themselves...

    This is how we do it during my corporate days. Hitting our KPIs is one thing, knowing HOW we achieved it is just as important!!!

    If its a case of market go up I make money; market goes down I lose money... Remind me why we hired you in the first place?

    Why NOT trading for a living is an edge for me?

    Because I can wait for the RIGHT pitch ;)

  3. Smol,
    I dun know what is my investing edge. Edge is something one have over other.

    I know somewhat my investing style, but dun know what edge it has. Everyone who wish to can do what I do.

    Just like animal system, cannot be hunter, be scavenger, cannot be scavenger be herbevoire.

    1. Sillyinvestor,

      You may discover it one day ;)

      2 hunters in the forest surprised by a menacing bear.

      An edge is knowing you can outrun the other hunter ;)

      Just like your day job. An edge is knowing not any and every Singaporean can do what you do.

      You are a rare breed!

  4. Hi SMOL,

    Not afraid to die
    Is my edge
    Cutting both ways

    Detonate the bomb
    Bleed the account
    Growing the spirit

    Life is worth living
    Only to have lived
    Through the battles

    My profits are lessons for making a bigger comeback each time I stumbled. Live to fight another day! LOL.

    1. Endrene,

      With that indomitable spirit, that's an edge in ANY endeavours!

      I find it a bit disappointing the new big daddy team is not very cheerleading recently...

      I'm in harmony with meritocracy and focusing on skills and competencies over academic papers.

      I can look the other way when lao lee tell us to "settle" when it comes to finding our life partners. Don't be choosy! Does not affect me as I meowed.

      Now the same don't be choosy is being echoed to youth in their job search; just "settle". In time you'll grow to "love" it...

      Limit the numbers of graduates to 30-40%? Who decides who gets to be the craftsman and who gets to be the intellectual? Grades? Wait. What happened to skills?


      Life is worth LIVING indeed!

      Ever stumble; ever fight.


      I guess my edge in life is I never "settled".

      "Eh, O'levels! Don't dream lah! Dream for what? Just have goals to work hard, save more, keep upgrading my skills of a sheep, and do what you were told!"


    2. Life is like trading.

      We can let others snake-oil us what kind of education we need to succeed in trading.

      Or we can walk our own path.

      There is little wonder who will be the ones asking why I don't have a job despite going for all the 'upgrading'.

      Yes, the edge is in not being the sheep.

      Hey, the sheep is more 'useful' than the cat anytime!

      But hor, why nobody questions 'useful' for whose ROI huh?


    3. Endrene,

      A woman who has a mind of her own, and can articulate it, now that's sexy!

      Why are all the good women either married or not interested in men?


  5. Hi SMOL,

    I think that's not a trading edge; it's a mental edge. If you don't need the money, and you are still doing the work, you can leave anytime. If you don't need the food, but you're still eating, you can afford to be picky. If you don't need the companionship but you are still with someone, you can walk off anytime. If you're a blogger and you're not selling anything, you can write anything you want or write nothing. If you don't need a job but you're in a job interview, you can say anything and be yourself.

    It's a great mental edge to do anything.

    1. LP,

      Semantics ;)

      In trading, there's the 3 Ms of Method, Money, and Mind.

      In sports, psychologists were hired to give sporting teams that "mental" edge over their opponents.

      In corporate, we invite motivational speakers to team building events to hype-up the sheep so they can produce more milk, more wool, and if need be, better meat!

      Its like Zen or Tao. The more we chase after "it", the more elusive "it" is. Always one step beyond our reach.

      But if we just stand still and not look for "it", we are enveloped by "it".

      When artists and sculptors produce their best works, I suspect they are not thinking about putting food on the table or stressing over how to pay rent ;)

      And in not so many words (at least for the post), its my little hammer ringing the tiny bell for those fellow traders who are "trading to escape".

      There's more than one way to skin a cat. But you gotta have an edge over the next hunter beside you.

      coconut's way is the best!

      Trading is in his soul. Its no different from eating or walking to him.

      I pray he is not on the opposite side of my trades.

  6. My investment edge:
    -By God's grace, I have my full time job
    -Central bank money printing have flooded the market with liquidity for the past decade

    1. Yaruzi,


      This is one edge where most climbing the mountain don't give enough focus or thanks to.

      Get retrenched and be out of a job for 1-2 years, see how easily that will affect our mental state...

      Especially when we lost that yearly cash injections to average down and dilute out our paper losses...

      And if we are not "balanced" psychologically, good luck to our investing or trading goals and plans!!!

  7. trading edge is when u are able to stay in the game and stay positive

    1. Jimmy,

      Yes, some entrepreneurs have that mental strength to return to the game despite multiple failures starting a slew of new businesses that never took off...

      The same applies to traders.

      We don't depend on goals. That would be too demoralising...

      We have a dream.

      And we don't "settle" ;)

      We can take pain.

  8. My edge is to shun debt, aspire towards omni-competency, and not be a one-trick pony.

    1. Unintelligent Nerd,

      To; aspire; not to be - these are plans. What you want to become.

      An edge is:

      I shun debt. I am omnicompetent, and not a one trick pony.

      Others I don't poke as its not cool to pick on their England.

      You different!

      The bar is higher for you ;)

      You are not anyone and everyone.

      We are Jedis. We use words to "bend" minds ;)

    2. Correct lah! Aspire, haven't become yet! Need another 30-40 years to level up my int and wis attributes first.

      By then, I become uncle UN liao :(

      Our oily friend too much. Sent me his newborn's pic and call me uncle UN -.-

    3. Unintelligent Nerd,

      That "orang minyak" really bad. You in your 20s. Must say "gor gor"!


      No, my intention is for you to speak with confidence!

      Respect, but don't show too much deference to old "uncles" at this watering-hole.

      Remember, you just have to out-run the next hunter. So whatever edge you have right NOW, just say it our loud with pride :)

      30-40 years later that's another edge for another day.

      Stay in the present.

      Stand tall.


  9. SMOL

    My trading edge is not to trade. This is not my forte. Investment is more suitable for mex

    1. Blursotong King!!!

      This a most powerful edge!

      It's on the opposite spectrum from coconut's.

      If you don't trade, no one can steal your lunch!

      My post is complete.

      All other trading edges are between your "not trading" and coconut's "eat, sleep, and shxx trading".


  10. temperament,

    We often say its LUCK.

    But deep down, we know its:

    Preparation meeting opportunity = LUCK

  11. My Edge is .....

    I'm lucky?Maybe.
    Made money whatever I invested in..

    1. WolfT,

      You win liao lor!

      Yes, I would rather be lucky than smart too ;)

      You've got the Midas touch!

      You lucky basxxxx!!!


  12. if we want to know what a trader edge is, just ask the cheetar, what is its edge for surviving?

    oh the cheetar can't talk, then we can only observe what its edge for surviving. its speed? its jaws? its limber? not at all, thats not what really why cheetar are so sucessful, the other animal also very sucessary even they cannot out run the cheetar!

    the way traders can survive its the same as the way other animals are surviving, their edge have to be the same.

    1. coconut,

      If every traders' edge were the same, will they not cancel each other out?

      Its a bit like sitting down at poker and say let's play carefully so ALL can go home with winnings tonight!?

      If the market is trending, trend traders will have an edge over range traders.

      If the market is flat, range traders will steal the money from momentum traders caught in false break-outs.

      If the market is highly volatile, momentum traders will have a field day while trend traders will keep getting stopped-out...

      2 traders with their own edge crossed path in the market. One sold; the other bought.

      One has to lose for the other to win.

      I have difficulty grasping your concept of all traders having the SAME edge???

      Be patient.

      I slow.

    2. the methodolgy of traders might and should be different, therefore methodolog cannot be an edge. thats why cheetar speed is not an edge, its its way of catching pray.

      each traders has their way of trading, sometime he win while other lost, other times he lost but other wins, thats common, i'm talking about long term surviving. in another words, an edge is not about single trade or even a string of trades, its about survival in the long run.

      one of common and most understood edge is the trader adoptation to market condition, just like animal evolution, there are others edge that a trader should posses that enable him to survive for the long run.

    3. so by saying i no need to trade for a living, is equal to what cheetar say its speed is the edge. well you might argue the whole day, it does have an advantage of speed compare to others, but its not the deciding factor, slower animal are also surviving very well. you get the point?

    4. so stop saying its your edge and not mine edge! if that is the case, everyone should have an edge , but most of them ended up in the ditch!

    5. recently i befriended a "well known" musician and we talk a lot about arts and music. i know nothing about music except listening to them, this guy is expert and also a composor and conductor!

      surprisingly, many of the way he feels about music is exactly the way i feel about my trading, he know what i do and we exchange very well.

      its further confirm my believe that trading is an art and not a science.

    6. so i decided that from now on, i will not call myself a trader seems everyone is a trader or want to be one.

      if someone ask me what you do for a living? i'm an artist. sound more misteris haha.

    7. coconut,


      I see your point now. It's adaptability ;)

      Its of course it a necessary trait for all traders!

      But like you say, not all traders can make it. Just like not everyone is adaptable to constant changes in the corporate world that big daddy always reminds us of.

      At this watering-hole, we are free to express our opinions and different viewpoints.

      Feel free to challenge and poke, but cannot stop us from saying what we like :)

      A cheetah has an edge in speed. It can outrun all of its prey. But it lacks in power. So it can't go for bigger and stronger preys like fully grown zebras and wildebeests.

      A leopard is stronger than the cheetah. It frequently steals the catch of a cheetah. But the lion in turn will come and muscle in on the leopard's catch too.

      But the leopard has an edge! It can climb trees! So it will haul its prey up a tree and the bigger and stronger lion can do nothing about it...

      The lion cannot climb tress nor can it outrun the cheetah. But its king in the African plains because they hunt in a pride - that's their edge.

      A single lion cannot bring down a fully grown water-buffalo; a pride of lions can.

      I just know when I meet another trader who eats, live, and shxx trading, I better stay the hell clear.

      I rather "play" with the "bei kambings".

    8. coconut,

      You don't think too much lah!

      Most people would rather call themselves as "investors" (after failing to become traders).

      Only a minority will call themselves as "traders" ;)

      Don't say you guys! "Investors" put traders down and you all don't say anything.

      I'm actually a hybrid, an omnivore, and I have to poke back for you true blue, born and breed traders.

      You owe me a drink!

      Well, you tell me.

      I am discretionary; you say you are systematic.

      Which is closer to art, which is closer to science?


      You can call yourself whatever you want! Mr artist!

      I also call myself a man-whore. There!


    9. discretionary can be arts, becos i once was and still are. but so does system traders! the system i developed and changes through the years is a piece of creation, its is still evolving, like a piece of drawing that seems never ends.

    10. this artist once say to me straight in the face, "you know, deep inside i strongly believe that musician is born and not learn" he only keep it to himself cos he also gives lectures and ofcos he is talking about a standard that is truely world class!

    11. coconut,

      This makes perfect sense to what you say!

      Adapting, evolving...

      "like a piece of drawing that seems never ends."

      You're an artist!

      The imagery is fantastic ;)

    12. Then what is considered science, since mastery of everything is always a piece of drawing that never ends? True science is also work-in-progress, never ending. Are you saying everything is an art then?

    13. What you said sounds like Darwin's theory of evolution, the survival of the fittest. Fittest doesn't mean strongest or fastest, it's the one that can best adapt to the environment that will survive. So, your art is actually science LOL

    14. LP,

      Is your question addressed to coconut or me?

      Salutations would be most appreciated ;)

    15. Haha, it's addressed to all and none :)

    16. LP, not sure what you driving at, i'm not a sceientis also, but what its means is to use mathematic formula to discribe what nature is, the cause and effect.

      dawin evolution does not fall into it.

    17. LP,


      Then I can chime in without stealing coconut's thunder ;)

      Science is a systematic and structured way of understand the world around us through observation and experiment.

      I describing the cheetah, leopard, and lion strengths (edge) - readers can verify through their own observations (from TV documentaries or nature books)

      You can either agree or disagree - based on your DIFFERENT observations, but you can't disagree based on opinions ;)

      Art is an expression of the human spirit and emotions.

      So when I say my edge is "Not Trading For A Living", that's my opinion. An expression of my trading spirit, so to say ;)

      Readers can agree or disagree - depending on their own experiences or opinions. But they can't disagree based on observation or experiment ;)

      Many are "confused" whether its Science or Art when it comes to trading and investing.

      Actually its quite simple.

      Anything that requires "mastery" is closer to Art than Science.

      Cannot be 100% as there's always the Ying/Yang symbol in everything ;)

      Science is more a matter of understanding and knowing.

      Once we understood how Earth revolves around the Sun, it will be part of our knowledge bank.

      If there are new material facts, we can say we have learned NEW things about the Earth revolving round the Sun, but we don't say we have increased our "mastery" of knowing Earth revolves round the Sun, do we?

      That's why if coconut says he is an Artist, who am I to disagree?

      Just like I gently reminded him he can't tell me what my trading edge is ;)

  13. Hi SMOL,
    I wholeheartedly agree that yours is a real edge. Not many can claim to have that kind of "free mind" that certainly would help to trade with a bit less emotions.
    If we live or die on the outcome of every trade, we'd better stop it. Each trade is only one of many trades I will make and added together, they will reveal both my edge and my trading performance.
    Having said that and as I am a human driven by emotions I hardly trade.

    1. Andy,

      I liken myself to a writer, artist, or sculptor.

      Getting a retainer from a patron, that frees me up to focus on my craft of trading.

      If I have to worry about my next meal and a roof over my head, I would have to "prostitute" myself like many have done before me...

      Go commercial ;)

    2. LOL

      Every investors and traders have their edge. Whose doesn't have the edge they had left the market already.

      Cheetahs are fast and they survive. Slow lorises are slow but they also survive.

      ho ho

    3. CW,

      For retail traders, yes. Within 2 years we should know we got edge or not.

      But for retail investors, we did say we need at least one bull/bear cycle no? Preferably two!

      You say until like ALL retail investors that are in the market are all profitable... You know that's not true.

      They are still in the market because of their yearly cash injections; thanks to their day job.

      We have 8 years of bull cycle. Must wait for the next bear cycle to know for sure whether we have the edge or not ;)

      And that's the fly in the ointment for long term investing tortoises...

      We need 10-20 years to see if our strategies actually work. And if they don't...

      Well, there goes the most precious resource of investing - time :(

      P.S. Actually no need to wait for a complete bull/bear cycle. We are in a 8 years bull cycle now. If our investing portfolio is still under water, its already a red flag something is not quite right...

      Do we admit it, or do we say let's give it more time... I am long term investor mah!

      Something tells me if we can't make money in bull market, what makes you think we can make money in a bear market? Unless you tell me you can fly with BOTH wings ;)

    4. The challenge with that edge is that no one is smarter than the collective intelligence of millions of other investors.

      Some, however, are a little more patient and less emotional. That's where the potential for "edge" is found.

      We can gain an edge over most investors through patience and good behavior (that includes a fair assessment of our own performance).

      And have you noticed that there is an edge to be found in "knowledge", "acknowledge your mistakes" and "hedge your risks"?

    5. Andy,

      Its a bit like school reunions right?

      Everyone started out from the same base, well almost...

      Years later, our paths diverge.

      Some do splendidly well in life.

      Some have been dealt with a bad set of cards - poor health, bad marriages, failed business ventures, career going no where, and messed up finances...

      Was it just plain dumb luck? Or was it more due to decisions we have or have not made?

      Or maybe both?


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