Love and Madness in the Jungle

A brilliant American financier and his exotic wife build a lavish mansion in the jungles of Costa Rica, set up a wildlife preserve, and appear to slowly, steadily lose their minds. A spiral of handguns, angry locals, armed guards, uncut diamonds, abduction plots, and a bedroom blazing with 550 Tiffany lamps ends with a body…

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Reality Rears Its Ugly Head

I have lost count of the number of conversations I have had with aspiring traders over the past 30 odd years. These conversations tend to have a few common themes, they are undoubtedly aspirational, often exciting and sometimes lacking in reality. It is this lack of reality that is the saddest part for me because…

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The AFR Prints Something Useful….Jaw Hits Floor

For a man who has built a $US30 billion  hedge fund empire on the prowess of artificial intelligence, David Harding is  as human as you can get. The 55-year-old founder of London-based Winton Capital Management’s personal fortune of $US1.5 billion is irrefutable proof that systematic trading can work, and works spectacularly well. But that does not make him…

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There Is Nothing New Under the Sun

When newbies first come to trading they have often have in the back of their mind that trading will save them from whatever fate life may have in store for them or that it will somehow compensate for past failures. Unfortunately, the traits that make people successful are universal. People who are successful in one…

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How Can This Be?

The Land Rover Defender is boxy, beastly and beloved. Early next year, it’ll be history. For seven decades, the Defender off-road vehicle has barely changed from a design so simple it was originally sketched in beach sand. Slabs of aluminum. A windshield with virtually no tilt. A roof rack made to hold steamer trunks or lion…

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Market Bounces

I thought in light of the events in Paris that it would be instructive to see how markets behave after such event. I have grabbed four what I would consider headline terror events and marked them on the relevant index. The situation with the September 11 attacks is that they took place during the collapse…

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Do Rational People Exist?

Does it make sense to talk about “rational people”? That is, is there a sub-population of individuals who consistently exhibit less cognitive bias and better judgment under uncertainty than average people?  Do these people have the dispositions we’d intuitively associate with more thoughtful habits of mind?  (Are they more flexible and deliberative, less dogmatic and…

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