Trading Psychology : The Difference Between Open-Minded and Close-Minded People

Trading is often about how to take the appropriate risk without exposing yourself to very human flaws.
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Euler
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Wed Sep 27, 2017 3:58 pm

Trading is impossible, here is the proof

http://bigthink.com/videos/tali-sharot- ... ation-bias

max_usted
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Thu Sep 28, 2017 11:02 am

From the article
In fact, Sharot cites research from Yale University that disproves the idea that the social divisions we are experiencing right now—over climate change, gun control, or vaccines—are somehow the result of an intelligence gap: smart people are just as illogical, and what's more, they are even more skilled at skewing data to align with their beliefs.
Ha ha - totally agree with this, explains much of the behaviour of academia.

Iron
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Fri Sep 29, 2017 8:09 pm

ruthlessimon wrote:
Thu Sep 21, 2017 7:50 pm
I would love to see more vicious debates on the forum.
I don't wish to sound snide, but there is more than enough viciousness already, which is part of the reason why I rarely post here. I wouldn't object to a bit of constructiveness though. :)

As happens in social media generally, people often feel the need to defend their position at all costs (or their guru's), and often resort to sarcasm, ad hominem and other stuff that gives off more heat than light (and, yes, I've been guilty of that too - though not very often, I hope!).

However, it would be nice to have a rigorous discussion from time to time, along the lines, of 'this is my hypothesis, this is why I believe it, this is the evidence, what do you guys think?', followed by calm and constructive discussion.

The challenge, however, is that we are all fishing in a very small lake, and an edge shared is an edge halved, so I can understand people wanting to play their cards close to their chests.

I'm coming to realise that the market is far and away the best teacher. Forums like this can be a source of ideas, but you need to think critically and do independent research to find out what works. As Mugs has pointed out, traders can earn more than doctors, so you can reasonably expect to have to put in a bit of study before you're able to make decent money.

BTW, my mind is now more open than it used to be (though I used to consider myself extremely open minded, as I'm willing to think outside the box and take on sacred cows). The barriers the mind puts up can be hard to spot, such is the urge to defend a cherished belief.

Jeff

PS No, I'm not back. :)

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ruthlessimon
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Fri Sep 29, 2017 9:13 pm

Ferru123 wrote:
Fri Sep 29, 2017 8:09 pm
'this is my hypothesis, this is why I believe it, this is the evidence, what do you guys think?', followed by calm and constructive discussion.
Why couldn't this be common knowledge? Or at least be taught in a course. The correct process of how an edge is created - from start to finish.

Switish is why I bring this point. As I'm sure you remember. He was craving the pros knowledge, & he was given it - but he still failed. & I know many traders who have gone down the same road. They have been given edges, gone on countless courses & still are no better than what they were before being mentored. How can this be?!? Moreover, I imagine it would be a universal skill - that could then be applied across every market. Crack how to make an edge properly, you crack how to trade every market on betfair.

The question is not "what does (top trader) know" it should be "how did (top trader) learn what he knows" & I think the "how" could certainly be more openly debated (i.e. modelling vs backtesting)

Iron
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Fri Sep 29, 2017 10:02 pm

ruthlessimon wrote:
Fri Sep 29, 2017 9:13 pm
Ferru123 wrote:
Fri Sep 29, 2017 8:09 pm
'this is my hypothesis, this is why I believe it, this is the evidence, what do you guys think?', followed by calm and constructive discussion.
Why couldn't this be common knowledge? Or at least be taught in a course. The correct process of how an edge is created - from start to finish.
Perhaps it is taught in some courses, but I think that when people attend courses they expect to be given a peek behind the curtain - for the magician to reveal his hard earned secrets. X marks the spot and all that.

If you paid hundreds of pounds and went away with a lesson about the scientific method and the importance of doing loads of boring, repetitive testing to develop your edge before you make any real money, you might feel cheated.

I think that the people hosting courses genuinely want to teach something of use. But I suspect that the courses serve as a starting point - a source of ideas to investigate further (ideas which could be acquired FOC in forums and via videos). To paraphrase the title of a book, where are all the attendees' yachts?
ruthlessimon wrote:
Fri Sep 29, 2017 9:13 pm
Switish is why I bring this point. As I'm sure you remember. He was craving the pros knowledge, & he was given it - but he still failed. & I know many traders who have gone down the same road. They have been given edges, gone on countless courses & still are no better than what they were before being mentored. How can this be?!?
An analogy.

I'm currently on a diet which could well see me lose 4 stone (safely!) by Christmas if I stick to it.

The devil is in the 'if'. The problem is your inner chimp, which, as the book by the same name points out, is, like a real chimp, 10 times stronger than you.

So mental discipline is part of the challenge - sticking with your plan. The road from hell to heaven can be long and painful, but not the road in the other direction, and you need to find ways of avoid being tripped up by your own mind.

But also, knowing in general terms what someone else does is, of itself, not an edge. For example, Switesh will have known that Peter likes to oppose trends. However, if he went long whenever there was a strong downtrend, he will have been steamrollered more often than not. What Switesh perhaps should have instead done is asked questions like 'What things might indicate that the current trend is about to reverse?' and come up with a clear strategy.

Jeff

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Euler
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Fri Sep 29, 2017 10:25 pm

I've given people edges and they just never used it, despite me being able to explain exactly what the edge was and how it works and why. So that's not the answer either. You can tell people something in infinite detail and it doesn't go in / something blocks it. I've figured out that human psychology is a key part of my edge. No amount of facts or debate can change peoples opinions or minds and that's, that.

I've stopped arguing now and couldn't care less about trying to explain unless people really want to listen, as I realise that's half the reason I persist in the market long after people of superior intelligence have failed. Long may it continue.

I've figured out humans are just designed to argue and counter-argue even when the facts are bare and right in front of them. They also make some really daft decisions, despite the answer being so obvious. It takes real strength of character and attitude to be able to get through all of that and reach a stage of enlightenment where you can just sit and watch it all going on around you without being influenced by it. But it's a real skill to do that and most people never get close.

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ruthlessimon
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Fri Sep 29, 2017 10:35 pm

Ferru123 wrote:
Fri Sep 29, 2017 10:02 pm
What Switesh perhaps should have instead done is asked questions like 'What things might indicate that the current trend is about to reverse?' and come up with a clear strategy...

...If you paid hundreds of pounds and went away with a lesson about the scientific method and the importance of doing loads of boring, repetitive testing to develop your edge before you make any real money, you might feel cheated.
Come back Jeff :)

You've absolutely hit the nail on the head there. But I'm almost 10000000% certain this is what Peter will do day in day out. Peter is arguably the best trader on betfair, & if he's always working on his edge - everyone should be. I've always thought live trading is simply a place to execute, 95% of the work leading up to the "click" was done hours prior (for me usually at 3am ;) )

Peter will say: "hmmm, that was a big move there maybe I've missed something?" - then draws up some ideas, & hits the spreadsheets.

There's a 90%+ failure rate, & everyone is taught - here's an edge - here's the holy indicator. No one is taught - modelling, excel number crunching, proper backtesting (no curve fitting); yet this is the common theme that links all the top pros. people (myself included) simply don't know how to create mathematical market models (& I'd love to). There is no course that teaches this. I certainly would not feel cheated, but maybe that's where I am in my journey. No matter what anyone says, any methodology - even if it is discretionary - has to be underpinned by strong statistical data. Otherwise, you'd never be in the correct state of mind to trade it properly. Every loss, you'd fear the edge has gone & second guess yourself - if you hadn't done the correct quantitive work prior.

The stuff Peter does between the hrs of 8am - 1pm. Then from 6pm - bed. Are the most valuable bits of knowledge available. Yet no-one ever asks what he does during these hrs!

Iron
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Fri Sep 29, 2017 10:44 pm

Euler wrote:
Fri Sep 29, 2017 10:25 pm
I've figured out humans are just designed to argue and counter-argue even when the facts are bare and right in front of them.
I think critical thinking is a fine thing - it enables one to separate the wheat from the chaff.

However, I agree that there's such a thing as over-analysis (and I fully accept I've been guilty of that - and undoubtedly still am, albeit without realising it).

For example, as I said in the email I sent you the other day, I'm coming around to the idea that mean reversion holds a long term edge. I'm still working on finding a way of exploiting that edge systematically, but I reckon I'll get there.
Euler wrote:
Fri Sep 29, 2017 10:25 pm
They also make some really daft decisions
Oh aye! :lol: :oops:
Euler wrote:
Fri Sep 29, 2017 10:25 pm
It takes real strength of character and attitude to be able to get through all of that and reach a stage of enlightenment where you can just sit and watch it all going on around you without being influenced by it. But it's a real skill to do that and most people never get close.
Agree 100%.

That is a rare and advanced skill.

Jeff

Iron
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Fri Sep 29, 2017 10:49 pm

ruthlessimon wrote:
Fri Sep 29, 2017 10:35 pm
Come back Jeff :)
No. :)
ruthlessimon wrote:
Fri Sep 29, 2017 10:35 pm
You've absolutely hit the nail on the head there. But I'm almost 10000000% certain this is what Peter will do day in day out.
I'm sure he will do a great deal of stat gathering, but equally a lot of his trading is based on his gut - see https://youtu.be/EsKmIuK0SGM - though the gut based techniques he uses may well have arisen from data analysis.
ruthlessimon wrote:
Fri Sep 29, 2017 10:35 pm
Peter will say: "hmmm, that was a big move there maybe I've missed something?" - then draws up some ideas, & hits the spreadsheets.
Quite possibly, yes. I've only recently come around to that way of thinking myself, but I think it holds the key to finding out what really works.
ruthlessimon wrote:
Fri Sep 29, 2017 10:35 pm
yet this is the common theme that links all the top pros.
I'm not sure about all pros. I imagine some will just trade using gut instinct, based on patterns they've observed or techniques they've been shown or read about.

Jeff

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ruthlessimon
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Fri Sep 29, 2017 11:04 pm

Euler wrote:
Fri Sep 29, 2017 10:25 pm
I've given people edges and they just never used it, despite me being able to explain exactly what the edge was and how it works and why. So that's not the answer either. You can tell people something in infinite detail and it doesn't go in / something blocks it. I've figured out that human psychology is a key part of my edge. No amount of facts or debate can change peoples opinions or minds and that's, that.
But could that be likened to a parent who is too kind to a child - to the point of the child having no confidence in their own ability.

Example: The parent is a top artist, & wants their son to become an artist like them. To get a top grade, the parent literally paints the picture for them, without teaching the skills that went into the painting. The graft & hrs of practicing the adult took to learn their craft - how to mix the paints to get the right tones, how to make the sky look realistic, how to paint an eye properly etc wasn't taught. If that child suddenly is left to their own devices they will struggle hugely.

In trading: If I'm given an edge & I don't know how it was created - how do I know how to adjust it as the market shifts. & also, how can I improve on the edge. No-one talks about that, but being given an edge should be a platform to go & improve on it.

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