9 out of 10

9 out of 10 won’t make it in the industry.

That’s the first thing they tell you when they hire you.

…And, it’s always the “best time to be in the business.”  The first one is true.

And then you learn…

9 out of 10 are supposed to make it. They won’t.

9 out of 10 are bred to make it. They probably won’t either…

9 out of 10 who remain, won’t add value.

For the ones that do remain, 9 out of 10 times you can be right, and the 10th time can kill you.

Wall Street is a treacherous mountain. A giant game of Survivor. No question. I’ve lost friends. Even brothers. Gained some too. I started in a class with 300 people. 5 years later there were 25 left at the firm. 4 years later, I couldn’t tell you… most probably jumped ship to another firm. That’s the way it is.

But I have to say, as much as I think about the lost causes and stench of it all; on days when it happens, when you connect with a client and probably change their life. Really, honestly change their life. It’s the most humbling, gratifying feeling I think one can experience.

Someone trusts you with their life, their legacy, and sometimes their heart.

Believe me. Just once is enough, you’ll never forget that connection.

Photo: Francois Lariviere

Full Disclosure: Nothing on this site should ever be considered to be advice, research or an invitation to buy or sell any securities, please see my Terms & Conditions page for a full disclaimer.

iheartWallStreet.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

Top 5 Things I Hate About Top 10 Investing Idea Lists

1. You do not know the ‘Top Ten Stocks For The Next Decade‘. Stop writing these articles. And YOU…Stop reading them. Now.

2. Byron Wien (I kid)

3. When the list is in a magazine subsidized by the ad dollars of the fund companies they are touting. {Smart Money, I’m looking at you.} How dumb are we?

4. When the list purports it’s life altering status. “The 10 stocks that will change your life.” — You should run. Fast. And far away. Or better yet, do the exact opposite of what they say.

and #5. That I got you to click on this story by writing a list about the top 5 things I hate about top 10 investing idea lists. (Google Search results: top ten investing ideas)

As you were…

Full Disclosure: Nothing on this site should ever be considered to be advice, research or an invitation to buy or sell any securities, please see my Terms & Conditions page for a full disclaimer.

iheartWallStreet.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

Bargaining…

The parallels between gambling and Wall Street investing are common, and well deserved. Afterall, life is a game of chance & it’s tales are epitomized on the street. I love the rags to riches stories. And on Wall Street, as much as we like to think we can trade our way to success, most of us are just lucky. Not that there is anything wrong with lucky.

And, yes I know effort equals output.

But if you flip a coin 60 times is that better than if you only flip it 20? And so. Simply put: if you aren’t in control, you are out of control.

And the market often reminds you of this universal truth, you are NOT in control.

The famous philosopher Alan Watts once said, that the western view of the world is very disconnected from the eastern. The western view takes an outsiders view of things… we say things like “face the facts or pull yourself together”, implying an observer role. Removed from the being of the universe– the Matrix if you will. And that YOU, the being of you, is a thing that observes happenings & creates.

Whereas the eastern philosophy is more of a universal “globular/blobular” view. We are ALL a big pile of being. And the eastern view leads you on the path to attempt to connect with this notion. But I digress…

A recent discussion with a financial advisor:

“My new clients want to wait for a pull back before we put more to work, my existing clients want to know why we don’t put more to work. I know I’m in charge, but I’m stuck on what to do…I feel like I can’t win.”

You see, it’s impossible to win in this dynamic. The notion that you are actually going to win, and there is a right decision…Life is a series of decisions with statistically unknowable outcomes most times. It is messy. And the universe is a giant equation balancing itself out. And while your decision is important, it actually isn’t.  Once you surrender to this notion, you start to see the current leg of the market (and all others) for what it is, a giant cog manifesting itself as a blob of being. Life, death, birth, etc. For the finance world, this would be considered a much, much more “macro” view. To others, I sound like I’m willing The Secret.  I’m not.  I’m just looking into the window of being and seeing what is. Investing is simply an exercise in faith.  That tomorrow will come and be better than today.  Now faith left unattended is equally messy.

So, you need to consider this. What is all of the activity in your accounts actually doing? Why are you doing it? Is it adding to your life or your family?

I know, as a trader or market professional you ask yourself, but what else would you do? And I know that is terrifying to think it has ended. But if you are a trader, it’s time to concede you probably are using hours, days, weeks, a lifetime on a quest not made for you.  And if you are an advisor trying to beat the market…you should quit now. The current construct is not designed for you to do this sustainably.  And for investors–It’s time to concede that most traders and advisors aren’t supposed to “beat the market.” and most can’t. Goldman Sachs lost money 2 days last quarter. 2.  That is not a mystical happening.  That is the system telling you where the money lies.

The truth? Advisors are supposed to be gurus for money. And a guru is simply a teacher.

So to me, in my zen-like state—forget the charts, the spreadsheets, and moving averages. If this market is a manifestation of anything right now, it would be grief. 2008 was the death of an era and the birth of something new, we don’t fully understand. And at the poker table of life, we are all grieving in our own way. And as such, as I observe when I meditate, we are in the Bargaining phase.

The stages Kubler-Ross identified are:

  • Denial (this isn’t happening to me!)
  • Anger (why is this happening to me?)
  • Bargaining (I promise I’ll be a better person if…)
  • Depression (I don’t care anymore)
  • Acceptance (I’m ready for whatever comes)

Who is grieving you might ask? Mutual Fund managers who know the game is over for them soon, the Financial Advisors who are only salespeople, the day trader screaming into his laptop cam to a 100 people on youtube, Hedge Funds on their knees pleading that their leverage will make their fee look affordable again, The Fed, The Senators, People who didn’t buy enough, people who bought too much going the wrong way. Probably the G20. And of course, People who’ve bought gold AND the people who haven’t….everyone. Everyone is bargaining for what they want right now… everyone. Afterall, we are a giant blob of being. The faster we learn to accept this truth, the more quickly the river of opportunity will flow.

Image: Studio Bueno

Full Disclosure: Nothing on this site should ever be considered to be advice, research or an invitation to buy or sell any securities, please see my Terms & Conditions page for a full disclaimer.

iheartWallStreet.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

Launch

UPDATE: Thanks for noting some of the errors messages.  I’m on it.

So, i’ve been working on a news site for sometime as a project. This has mostly been an engineering exercise thus far, to save time searching for relevant news. For me, economic and market focused news. This weekend my developers launched some updates to make it look a little more pretty and useful (w/ more sharing tools).

The site itself is a mix between Abnormal Returns or Techmeme since I do curate some links and combinations, but in general it’s a more focused version of Google News since it is mostly Algorithm based news.

The Wall Street Sheet: Indexing Relevant Market Thoughts & Curating Conversations.

I’ll share more soon…

Thanks to Sean Percival, Rod Edwards, and the Team at Cavendo for helping make the dream a reality.

Full Disclosure: Nothing on this site should ever be considered to be advice, research or an invitation to buy or sell any securities, please see my Terms & Conditions page for a full disclaimer.

iheartWallStreet.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

2/20

It takes a special person to charge 2% & 20% on the overage. I’m not saying it’s not deserved. Or not earned. Or dumb. Or smart. It’s just the way hedge funds do it. And how can I blame the money manager?…

He’s 40. He has $7 million in the bank. It’s his number. He can retire right now. He knows it. And he’s wondering what next year will look like. Afterall– he’s trading convertibles, arbitrage. How much better can it get than 2010? 2011? The last time was the 90’s. He’s eating fruit loops & watching tv by 11am.

So he’s faced with this reality…Does he want to hang on for the next 10 year business cycle to play out?

It’s an interesting aspect of finance. There are tranches of reflection. I don’t know how many other professions other such a dramatic pause.

…but I digress.

Finance probably won’t be able to sustain this model too much longer. It’s due for disruption on price. It’s time has come. The automation of another industry has become inevitable. And the low cost model will pervail (again) for at least the next 10 years. And he has to know it…

Me? I’m on the get rich slow program. Lasts longer that way.

I heart Adult Language

Full Disclosure: Nothing on this site should ever be considered to be advice, research or an invitation to buy or sell any securities, please see my Terms & Conditions page for a full disclaimer.

iheartWallStreet.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.