Thursday, May 15, 2008

Booknotes: The Complete TurtleTrader

  • The Turtles were trained to be trend-following traders. In a nutshell, that meant that they needed a "trend" to make money.
  • Risk 2% of account for each trade.
  • Traders who face the same opportunity must trade the same. Personal feelings can't interfere.
  • The Turtles were taught not to fixate on when they entered a market. They were taught to worry about when they will exit.
  • The Turtles were supposed to say, "I want to buy or sell short markets that are in motion, because markets in motion tend to stay in motion."
  • Don't try to predict how long a trend either up or down will last. It is impossible.
  • The Turtles were not to wait for a retracement. There was no statistical justification to think like that.
  • They learned that it was better to risk taking many small losses than to risk missing one large profit.
  • Entries and Exits: "It's always better to buy rallies."
  • The Turtles were taught to enter trades via "breakouts." A breakout occurs when a market "breaks through" a recent high or low.
  • Start keeping track of the open, high, low, and close of each market you are tracking. That is the key date you need to make all of your trading decisions.
  • System One (S1) used a 20-day price breakout for entry and 10-day breakout in opposite direction for exit.
  • S2 used 55-day entry and 20-day exit.
  • To calculate N: 1. today's high minus low; 2. yesterday's close minus today's high; 3. yesterday's close minus today's low. Maximum value of three is the "true range."
  • 20-day average is the N.
  • Also a 2N stop.
  • Low "N" measurement at the time of entry is a good thing.
  • Pyramiding: Adding units at each N move.
  • Avoid markets that are highly correlated.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Booknotes: Quiet Strength

I've been meaning to read this for awhile, and I finally got around to it. It's a bit religious-ey but not in a bad way. I could definitely use a bit more religion or god or spiritualness in my life.

And I like the parts about teaching and helping others. I've also been chasing money all my life and still am, and I worry if I find all the money but then what? What if I lose my soul in the bargain, as that famous Matthew quote asks. Which Dungy's book brings up a few times.

With that, here are my notes:

  • My father often said, "If you're going to be a good teacher, you can't just teach the A students. A good teacher is one who helps everybody earn an A."
  • "When I was in the service," his father said, "they didn't want to teach us how to fly planes, so we taught ourselves to fly."
  • We. Blacks. African Americans.
  • Things will go wrong at times. You can't always control circumstances. However, you can always control your attitude, approach, and response. Your options are to complain or to look ahead and figure out how to make the situation better.
  • Usually my mom and dad were calm and gave us the whys and hows of the situation before they took away privileges.
  • ...but blanket rules don't always fit every individual. I need to treat everybody fairly, but fair doesn't always mean equal.
  • My mother was a phenomenal storyteller, and from her I learned the importance of illustrating a lesson with a word picture.
  • Coach Cal Stoll: "Success is uncommon and not to be enjoyed by the common man. I'm looking for uncommon people because we want to be successful, not average."
  • Most people have a better chance to be uncommon by effort than by natural gifts.
  • Coach Noll: "Champions don't beat themselves. If you want to win, do the ordinary things better than anyone else does -- day in day out. We're not going to fool people or outscheme them. We're just going to outplay them."
Coach Noll got it from Paul Brown. It all goes back to Paul Brown.

  • "Talent is God-given; be thankful. Praise is man-given; be humble. Conceit is self-given; be careful." -- Dave Driscoll.
  • "When you can do the common things of life in an uncommon way, you will command the attention of the world." -- George W. Carver.
  • "Life will never be the same again, but you won't always feel like you do right now." -- friend and pastor Tom.
  • Same list of goals I use every training camp: 1. Top 5 in the NFL in giveaway/takeaway ratio; 2. Top 5 in fewest penalties; 3. Top 5 in overall special teams; 4. make big plays; 5. Don't give up big plays.
  • That's what this is all about. Touching lives. Building a legacy -- not necessarily on the field but in those places that most people will never see. Trying to be faithful in the position God has given me.
  • My purpose in life is simply to glorify God. We have to be careful that we don't let the pursuit of our life's goals, no matter how important they seem, cause us to lose sight of our purpose.