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Would you share your Holy Grail?


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Would you share your Holy Grail?

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  #1 (permalink)
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If you found the Holy Grail, would you share it with the world? By Holy Grail, all I mean is a system or methodology that can consistently yield profits in all market conditions however it does it and also make a good ROI.

Would you ask for compensation? I once bought a course and to this day I'm haunted by what this popular guru let accidently slip. He said that these days he was too busy teaching to actually trade. Think about that for a minute. He was living off of other people's hopes and dreams and in doing so was living their dreams.

So far there've been alot of people that have been trying to sell the dream of systems and strategies or even signals that make bank. These days I've seen an evolution in the landscape where people try to sell the idea that you can't get rich quick and instead they sell another dream via support groups or training. To me, both of these types of people are feeding off the dreams of other people. That isn't to say they don't produce value, but if they created an absurd amount of value they would be renown across the internet.

Just as this is two sides of a coin, so too is the question of the Holy Grail. On one side there's the idea of a self-fulfilling prophecy (candlestick patterns) and on the other there's this idea of alpha decay where the more people that know, the less effective your edge becomes (arbitraging). What are your thoughts?

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  #2 (permalink)
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Pretty interesting questions, I think.

Some thoughts:


trepidation View Post
If you found the Holy Grail, would you share it with the world?

Uh, no.

Since your question basically is, does anyone who is selling a Holy Grail actually have one, the answer obviously is also no. Why would they sell it? Duh.


Quoting 
I once bought a course and to this day I'm haunted by what this popular guru let accidently slip. He said that these days he was too busy teaching to actually trade. Think about that for a minute. He was living off of other people's hopes and dreams and in doing so was living their dreams.

This may be true, and you could say it has to be true, but it depends on what they are offering and teaching. I am perfectly willing to think that someone can be offering something valuable but can make more by selling or "teaching" than by trading. How is that possible? It depends on how Holy the Grail is , obviously.

1. Suppose you could make a few percent above risk-free investment (Treasury bills) a year, with absolute consistency. You should realize that you would be better than almost all the major hedge and investment firms, the famous "big boys" who supposedly control the markets, and those big boys would be happy to see you. But you wouldn't necessarily have the capital to make use of it yourself.

2. Suppose you had some decent trading methods for the smaller retail trader, but not get-rich-overnight methods. You might want to "teach" or sell that too, and you might do better if you did. A lot of sales or seminars might make you more than modest day-trading returns. It also involves a different skill set. A good teacher or a good salesperson probably should be teaching or selling if that's their strength. It still may be a decent method, but a good salesperson might make more selling it.... Sales people can make money selling anything, which doesn't tell you in itself whether it's good or bad.

3. Suppose you had a make-you-rich-now system (well, for one thing, you won't, but never mind), in that case you obviously would not put your time and effort into selling or teaching anything.

So there's a spectrum, and if someone offers too much, they are not genuine. If in between, maybe they are.


Quoting 
These days I've seen an evolution in the landscape where people try to sell the idea that you can't get rich quick and instead they sell another dream via support groups or training. To me, both of these types of people are feeding off the dreams of other people.

I've seen that too. Maybe some of them are good, I couldn't say. I think you have to evaluate everything individually.

Also, I can say for a fact that I have gotten value from some people (I'm not going into names) and some trading ideas that others find totally useless, and vice-versa. So there is an "eye of the beholder" question here too.

Does everyone make use of the same thing the same way? Not likely. That's why there are legitimate differences of opinion on some of these.


Quoting 
on the other there's this idea of alpha decay where the more people that know, the less effective your edge becomes

I think the market's probably way too big for this to be important. What I mean is, if I had a super-duper system, would it be realistic to think that if I made it public that everyone would jump on my bandwagon and ruin my own returns? I think that, realistically, not many (or any at all) would jump on my little system no matter what the results. But yes, big ideas that do truly become popular (such as any of the many trading/investing crazes that have swept the market ... you know, the dot com bubble and real estate and tulip bulbs) do end up failing, in part because they got so popular that no one was taking the other side so there weren't enough people to sell to without seeing a big loss.

But just in case, if I ever do have a true super-duper Holy Grail, or even something half-way decent, I may talk about it in general terms, but no one is going to see my code. Just in case.

I'm not selling it either, if it's that good.

I hope other people join in. This could be a good discussion. Thanks for posing the question and starting it.

Bob.

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  #3 (permalink)
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  #4 (permalink)
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trepidation View Post
If you found the Holy Grail, would you share it with the world? By Holy Grail, all I mean is a system or methodology that can consistently yield profits in all market conditions however it does it and also make a good ROI.

Would you ask for compensation? I once bought a course and to this day I'm haunted by what this popular guru let accidently slip. He said that these days he was too busy teaching to actually trade. Think about that for a minute. He was living off of other people's hopes and dreams and in doing so was living their dreams.

So far there've been alot of people that have been trying to sell the dream of systems and strategies or even signals that make bank. These days I've seen an evolution in the landscape where people try to sell the idea that you can't get rich quick and instead they sell another dream via support groups or training. To me, both of these types of people are feeding off the dreams of other people. That isn't to say they don't produce value, but if they created an absurd amount of value they would be renown across the internet.

Just as this is two sides of a coin, so too is the question of the Holy Grail. On one side there's the idea of a self-fulfilling prophecy (candlestick patterns) and on the other there's this idea of alpha decay where the more people that know, the less effective your edge becomes (arbitraging). What are your thoughts?


Would love to hear who this was, but I understand not saying it outloud.

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  #5 (permalink)
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trepidation View Post
If you found the Holy Grail, would you share it with the world?

I never have and never will.


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  #6 (permalink)
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If it truly was the holy grail, would it work if everyone used it? who is going to take the other side of your trades if everyone is going in your direction? on the other hand, the Polio vaccine was given away free, so there is that. It would at least feel good to know that you made a difference in the world, put coin in peoples pockets, and gave it away free.

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  #7 (permalink)
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Would you ever sell holy grail?

No. If it has good ROI, and is living to standard of "holy grail", there is no amount of money from retailer that can make me sell it to him/her.

It would be different story if what I'm getting paid is more than what I can make using my "holy grail" on extended period of time.

I was thought very early in my life and it applies quite well to financial markets and its; "If it's too good to be true, it probably isn't"

This is not to smack talk anyone that sells anything, like course, indicators or books, usually there is lot to learn from them.

Another thing I would like to point out is that even if you did get someones "holy grail", it would probably not work for you. Trading is very very individual practice unless you automate everything.

I've also seen great influx of people from all over the world, especially from IT department that think it is achievable to have "algo" that makes them money passively. I kid you not, most office workers in my country that work in IT department at least have one trading account in family. This is the new dream/thing in the market at the moment.

I dunno how successful they are though, but I do know that they wont be willing to sell whatever they developed even if it was giving 1% more than Fixed Deposit return, unless of course you are willing to pay more than that up front.

And if you are wondering about me having anything remotely like holy grail, I don't. I only have lot of broken relationships though

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  #8 (permalink)
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I wanted to mull on your response before I responded. I want to add that the "Dream" to the "Holy Grail" is to be able to live off your trading.


bobwest View Post
1. Suppose you could make a few percent above risk-free investment (Treasury bills) a year, with absolute consistency. You should realize that you would be better than almost all the major hedge and investment firms, the famous "big boys"...

2. Suppose you had some decent trading methods for the smaller retail trader, but not get-rich-overnight methods. You might want to "teach" or sell that too, and you might do better if you did. A lot of sales or seminars might make you more than modest day-trading returns....

Regarding hedge funds, you have to consider that their goal isn't to aggressively grow capital, but to protect that capital and to hedge against inflation. Simply buying treasuries means you're at parity with inflation.

The only legit system I've discovered that hits these two nails on the head and can be picked up relatively quickly is basically Writing Options/Selling Premium. There're a number of reputable vendors that sell their services, but when you crunch the numbers they're also selling a fake dream to the retail trader because you generate approximately 15% ROI annually on utilized capital. The use of utilized capital is key because you're only supposed to utilize 50% of your capital in order to defend losing positions. So say you have a 100k account, you're lucky to generate $10k in a year because you're only ever going to actively deploy $50k. They sell the dream of making stable income while feeding off your dream through their subscription fees. So this isn't particularly good for the retail trader. It also isn't good for the large institutions (say over $5 mil) because at some point there becomes liquidity issues and there're only so many opportunities at any given point.


bobwest View Post
[Alpha decay] I think the market's probably way too big for this to be important. What I mean is, if I had a super-duper system, would it be realistic to think that if I made it public that everyone would jump on my bandwagon and ruin my own returns?

This is actually a very big issue in cryptocurrency because there is no centralized exchange. Arbitrage bots fight each other to generate returns. The more people that are arbitraging, the less opportunity there is. It's true that they're making the market more efficient, but the more efficient the market is the less alpha there is. You could say professional pit traders were also arbitragers. The other thing kinda only applies to very volatile and illiquid contracts like nq or crude on micro frames, if there's a strong scalping signal only a few can take advantage of that opportunity. For example, crude inventories release events are now impossible to immediately trade because of the rapid orderflow.

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  #9 (permalink)
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Yeah, when anyone talks about Holy Grails there are a lot of ways to slice the subject up, but basically there isn't any such thing. It's a matter of hope, generally the hope of the unwary, and exploitation of that hope by smart people who don't know anything useful about the markets, but do know a lot about human nature.

We see this here all the time, as hopeful new would-traders (and hopeful long-time traders) fall for the lure of salespeople who are making their living by selling stuff that can be made to look good, but doesn't work.

If you tell the hopeful people that if someone has something that does work, they aren't going to be selling it, and they don't have any incentive to, that idea doesn't always penetrate the barrier of hope that is blocking their ability to perceive the simplest aspects of reality.

People who will laugh at junk emails from Nigerian princes offering wealth if you just send them some money first (I'm not sure this scam is still going on, but most people will remember it) will reach for their credit cards when a slightly more sophisticated pitch is made to them involving trading.

You made some points regarding the efficiency of markets, and the role of arbitrage in erasing exploitable opportunities. I liked what you said about pit traders: "You could say professional pit traders were also arbitragers." When they lost their unique position in the markets that let them have a shot at everyone's orders up front, a lot of pit traders couldn't make it "upstairs" trading from the screens. Their edge was mainly their position in the markets. They could make use of it until computer order-matching erased their role. At least this is true for some.

There's a lot that can be said about the efficiency-producing effect of smart people trying to exploit any possible trading opportunity, but what it comes down to is that trading is going to be hard to succeed at, because the competition is in there trying to do what you are trying to do, and it tends to erase any actual edge anyone has. (Which is another reason it can be more profitable to sell a system than to trade it. )

Bob.

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trepidation View Post
If you found the Holy Grail, would you share it with the world? By Holy Grail, all I mean is a system or methodology that can consistently yield profits in all market conditions however it does it and also make a good ROI.

Would you ask for compensation? I once bought a course and to this day I'm haunted by what this popular guru let accidently slip. He said that these days he was too busy teaching to actually trade. Think about that for a minute. He was living off of other people's hopes and dreams and in doing so was living their dreams.

So far there've been alot of people that have been trying to sell the dream of systems and strategies or even signals that make bank. These days I've seen an evolution in the landscape where people try to sell the idea that you can't get rich quick and instead they sell another dream via support groups or training. To me, both of these types of people are feeding off the dreams of other people. That isn't to say they don't produce value, but if they created an absurd amount of value they would be renown across the internet.

Just as this is two sides of a coin, so too is the question of the Holy Grail. On one side there's the idea of a self-fulfilling prophecy (candlestick patterns) and on the other there's this idea of alpha decay where the more people that know, the less effective your edge becomes (arbitraging). What are your thoughts?

One man's "Holy Grail System" is another man's "Impossible to Execute System"


Quoting 
The amateur,

If your system is so great, why are you selling it? Why not just trade it and rake it in?

The Master
,

You won't be able to execute it.


Dreams are being sold ALL THE TIME. Every single acting class in California has at least one dreamer (probably many more) ......for example.

Same thing happened to Mark Douglas. He had so many clients paying him for his coaching he didn't/couldn't trade. He finally ended it so he could.

IMHO... Most people don't have the first clue what is needed in trading. They constantly look in the wrong place and for the wrong things.

For example, I take issue with even your premise stated in the first paragraph on its face value.

The 5% that drain accounts know...... I know .......Trading is one of the most complete illusions I have found...... The only better one is religion ...... If you work hard, study and put in tremendous energy you can discover the reality of both...... Takes never ending work to remain clear eyed on these subjects.

Ron

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