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Some highly recommended books

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denver, colorado
Trading Experience: Intermediate
Platform: NT
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Trading Books

Finally got around to working my way through this thread (but not cover to cover - just 75% or so).

I would say I agree w Cunparis's post that you have to be careful with your time. However, I would add that you have to be more careful with your mind - especially if you are starting out. The reason being that (IMO) most how-to trading book authors are writing because they cannot make money trading. My opinion is that if you consider this to be axiomatic then you will be correct more times than you will be wrong. There's a story about Ed Seykota in which van tharp asks Ed several times to get help in writing his book "trade your way to financial freedom" and Ed tells Van that he should title his book "Write your way to financial freedom" instead.

The problem is that there are so many "ways to trade" that do not work but still look great "on paper" or "in theory". I think that if you spend time reading these books, you'll not only waste your time but be mislead about what it really takes to be consistently profitable trading. (I want to make a distinction here between "how to trade" books and "reference" books such as edwards and magee.)

I think this is why psychology of trading books are more often good than bad - the author isn't claiming to know how to trade, just how to think while trading. However, even in this space there is a lot a repetition and trite advice.

I don't want to make a list of all the books I like and all the books I don't. But I do want to discuss (if anyone is interested) Ari Kiev's books. Dr. Kiev worked with at the olympic training center at the start of his career. After establishing himself as a performance shrink and coach, Steven Cohen (SAC capital) hired him to be there on-site shrink/coach. After almost a decade of this, he wrote his first book "Trade to Win" with a preface by Steven Cohen. As far as I'm concerned, a pedigree doesn't get any better than this - the guy worked with the best athletes in the world then he worked with one of the best traders (and his hedge fund) in the world. I don't know of anybody in this space that has anything like this level of experience and track record.

Ari's advice is very clear - he believes (in direct contrast to much i've read in "how to trade" books and psych books and also many places on (formerly BMT)) that a trader needs to set specific monetary goals. He believes that only specific monetary goals have the power to push a trader to do what is necessary to improve him/herself (in terms of knowledge, strategy, psychology, etc) in trading. He believes goals push individuals to unlock their potential. He also has a somewhat unique take on the emotions generated by trading. He (even back in 1998 when this was anathema to most wrote/said) has never recommended "controlling" emotions - he recommends feeling them, acknowledging them, and working WITH them. This is advice many today claim to have "invented" (but I'm not naming names!).

I'm curious if anyone has read Ari and what they think? I have read "psychology of risk", most of "managing trader stress", some of "trading in the zone" (same title as douglas's book), and have "trading to win" on deck right now.

Seek freedom and become captive of your desires. Seek discipline and find your liberty. - Frank Herbert
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