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Trend Following with Michael Covel

Bestselling author Michael Covel is the host of Trend Following Radio with 6+ million listens. Investments, economics, decision-making, human behavior & entrepreneurship--all passionately explored. Guests include Nobel Prize winners Robert Aumann, Angus Deaton, Daniel Kahneman, Harry Markowitz & Vernon Smith. Also: James Altucher, Dan Ariely, Jean-Philippe Bouchaud, Kathleen Eisenhardt, Marc Faber, Tim Ferriss, Jason Fried, Gerd Gigerenzer, Larry Hite, Sally Hogshead, Ryan Holiday, Jack Horner, Ewan Kirk, Steven Kotler, Michael Mauboussin, Tucker Max, Barry Ritholtz, Jim Rogers, Jack Schwager, Ed Seykota, Philip Tetlock & Walter Williams. All 600+ eps at trendfollowingradio.com/rss.
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Bestselling author Michael Covel is the host of Trend Following Radio with 6+ million listens. Investments, economics, decision-making, human behavior & entrepreneurship--all passionately explored. Guests include Nobel Prize winners Robert Aumann, Angus Deaton, Daniel Kahneman, Harry Markowitz & Vernon Smith. Also: James Altucher, Dan Ariely, Jean-Philippe Bouchaud, Kathleen Eisenhardt, Marc Faber, Tim Ferriss, Jason Fried, Gerd Gigerenzer, Larry Hite, Sally Hogshead, Ryan Holiday, Jack Horner, Ewan Kirk, Steven Kotler, Michael Mauboussin, Tucker Max, Barry Ritholtz, Jim Rogers, Jack Schwager, Ed Seykota, Philip Tetlock & Walter Williams. All 600+ eps at trendfollowingradio.com/rss.

Nov 17, 2017

Robert Carver got his start in finance working at trend following firm AHL in 2001 during his final year of college. He was introduced to quantitative trading while at AHL and for the first time began thinking of finance in a systematic way. He later went back to AHL, working there from 2006-2013. His newest book is “Smart Portfolios: A Practical guide to building and maintaining intelligent investment portfolios.”

It took a lot of research and digging for Robert to decipher which financial tools available to traders were appropriate for him. He knew he was not the only trader with this problem so he decided to write a book laying out what he had found through his research. Robert gives actionable tips and guidelines for others who may need help finding what trading instruments are right for them. Robert also wanted “Smart Portfolios” to be a book for the average investor. He wrote it in a way that is not over complicated. Any trader, new or professional, can pick it up and find it useful.

Robert bases portfolio selection around three questions: 1. What should you invest in? 2. How much of your capital goes into those investments? 3. Do you make changes to your portfolio along the way? Whenever he receives questions from people, those questions usually fall into one of the above categories. There is never perfection when trying to predict how a portfolio will perform but Robert stresses that if you start your investing answering the above questions, you will be on the right track. After the right portfolio and financial tools have been selected it’s necessary to understand different types of returns. Michael and Robert finish the podcast discussing differences between geometric and arithmetic returns.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Portfolio selection
  • Benchmarks
  • International investing
  • Fundamental trading
  • Warren Buffett trading
  • Expected average performance
  • Leveraging a portfolio
  • Luck vs. Skill
  • Venture capitalism
Nov 13, 2017

Michael throws Jeff Bezos, Amazon and trend following into a giant melting pot. Jeff Bezos is a trend following trader – along with venture capitalists, Hollywood, the MIT black jack team, Warren Buffett (to some degree, yes), and many more.

Michael notes an excerpt from a document written in 1983, gleaning wisdom from Richard Dennis and Bill Eckhardt. Not relevant today? Think again. Richard Dennis makes it clear in the document that you never know where the next home run is coming from – missing a big payout is just as bad as taking a loss. Are you guilty of forgetting about big opportunity when trading? Do you focus too much on your downside? Most unfortunately get fixated on the downside and ignore the positive unknown.

Michael also notes an article written by Li Jiang titled, “What I Learned From Reading Every Amazon Shareholders Letter.” Li lists key lessons he has pulled from shareholder letters: type I and type II decisions, end each day of business like it is the first day, always operate like a hungry upstart, only the paranoid survive, make small bets because you can’t predict anything, move fast and break things, and if you are offered a seat on a rocketship – don’t ask which seat, just get on. Jeff Bezos’ words dovetail seamlessly with trend following philosophy. Thinking outside the box is essential to making great things can happen.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Jeff Bezos
  • Amazon
  • Type 1 errors/decisions
  • Type 2 errors/decisions
  • Sunk cost
  • Opportunity cost
  • Prediction
  • Trend following is dead?
Nov 10, 2017

Mark Kritzman is a Senior Lecturer in Finance at the MIT Sloan School of Management, founding Partner and Chief Executive Officer of Windham Capital Management and serves as a senior partner of State Street Associates. Mark has written six books, his latest titled “A Practitioners Guide to Asset Allocation”.

Mark began his career on Wall Street in 1974 and was immediately drawn toward systematic trading. At a time when there were not many quantitative traders, he was affectionately titled a “token quant” within his company.

Over the years Mark has been an advisor to many funds. While working with various companies it became clear fund managers were mixing how they invest with how they would choose asset classes. He decided to break down the most basic and logical ways of organizing the investment process. What are some components of an asset class: stable composition, be investable, internally homogeneous, externally heterogeneous, raise the utility of a portfolio, and you should be able to access it in a cost effective way. From there, depending on a persons risk, different combinations of asset classes would make up a portfolio.

Being in the game as long as Mark has, he has been able to witness the enduring and turbulent nature of markets. He saw one silver lining come out of the 2008 financial crisis – it provided a context where investors could go back to the basics of trading, and in particular, recalibrate how they manage risk. Mark finishes the podcast talking fixed weight portfolios, Peter Bernstein on scaling portfolio risk, dynamic asset allocation and explaining Samuelson’s Dictum.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Definition of an asset class
  • Actively managed portfolios
  • Passively managed portfolios
  • Time diversification
  • Portfolio diversification
  • The fallacy of large numbers
  • Leverage
  • Value at risk
  • Risk management
  • Fear and greed
  • Risk and reward
  • Exposure to risk
Nov 6, 2017

Today’s mega combo episode is Chris Voss, Robert Cialdini, Philip Tetlock, Spyros Makridakis, and Tim Ferriss.

Chris Voss is the author of, Never Split The Difference: Negotiating As If Your Life Depended On It. Chris is a former international hostage negotiator for the FBI. He has had an amazing career full of great experience and insights. Chris first entered the FBI in 1983 and has been involved with over 150 kidnapping cases.

Robert Cialdini is best known for writing Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion published back in 1984. Robert is the “go to man” for understanding effective persuasion. Reciprocity, commitment and consistency, social proof, authority, liking and scarcity are six key principles of influence he teaches. His new book, Pre-Suasion: A Revolutionary Way to Influence and Persuade, introduces a seventh key principle of influence.

Philip Tetlock is a Canadian American political science writer currently at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He is right at the intersection of psychology, political science and organizational behavior. His book, Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction, is probabilistic thinking defined. Phil is also a co-principle investigator of The Good Judgment Project, a study on the art and science of prediction and forecasting.

Spyros Makridakis is Rector of the Neapolis University of Pafos NUP and an Emeritus Professor of Decision Sciences at INSEAD as well as the University of Piraeus and one of the world’s leading experts on forecasting, with many journal articles and books on the subject. He is organizer of the Makridakis Competitions, known in the forecasting literature as the M-Competitions.

Tim Ferriss is an author, blogger and motivational speaker known for his bestselling books. Tim has revolutionized the idea of writing a book; he has engineered the process of a bestseller.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Aversion to negotiation
  • Negotiating skills
  • Never pretend people are rational
  • Business negotiations compared to hostage negotiations
  • Lying three times
  • “How” and “Why” questions
  • What are superforecasters?
  • Probabilistic thinking
  • Looking at data
  • Location independence
  • 80/20 rule
  • Known knowns, known unknowns, and unknown unknowns
  • Uncertainty
  • How to publish a book
Nov 3, 2017

Frank Ostaseski has dedicated his life to helping others. He is co-founder of the Zen Hospice Project and founder of the Metta Institute. Frank is a Buddhist teacher, international lecturer and expert on the end-of-life experience. His work spans from helping the homeless to the wealthy to the young and to the elderly have an easier transition to the other side. Frank loves what he does because of how “real” the experience of death is. His new book is The Five Invitations: Discovering What Death Can Teach Us About Living Fully.

How did Frank begin helping people with the experience of death? It was not a linear path. Frank had experiences with death early on in his life with the passing of his parents. He later was introduced to the Buddhist practice with the central tenet of Buddhism being the study of constant change. When his son was born he felt it was important to “birth his soul”. He went to a program where everyone was grieving and learning about the loss of a soul. Frank on the other hand, wanted to learn how to gain a soul for his son. He didn’t find much help with that, however the leader of the program invited him back to see first hand what experiencing death was like. He later visited Central America working in refugee camps where he saw a lot of misery and death. He then went to San Francisco when the aids epidemic was running rampant on the streets. Each experience kept pulling him in a little more and more and every death he witnesses continues to show him how precious and precarious life is.

Frank’s five invitations, outlined in his book, have become his road map and guidelines for life: don’t wait, welcome everything and push away nothing, bring your whole self to the experience, find a place of rest in the middle of things, and cultivate don’t know mind.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • The territory of mystery
  • The inevitability and intimacy of dying
  • How saying goodbye at a party relates to saying goodbye when dying
  • Importance of human connection
  • Don’t wait
  • The reality of constant change
  • Openness during the travel experience
  • Trusting our intuition
  • Common humanity
  • Resting in the middle of activity
  • Discovering the truth
  • Stoicism
Oct 30, 2017

Mike Salguero is a serial entrepreneur. His newest venture is Butcher Box – delivering meat from the farm straight to your door. He got his start in the business space selling t-shirts in high school and continued making t-shirts throughout college. He credits his t-shirt businesses to teaching him how to market and grow a brand from the ground up.

Mike’s first large scale business was a company that helped carpenters market and sell their custom furniture. The company was called CustomMade. Mike and his business partner bought the URL for $150,000, revamped the website, raised $30 million of venture capital and at it’s peak employed 60 people. By the time Mike left the company they were down to 6 employees. His partner stayed with it and has turned the company around, but most investors lost everything. He learned a lot from CustomMade – the paramount lesson being how to market a product.

Butcher Box was started a few years after stepping away from CustomMade. Mike and his wife wanted to eat cleaner and healthier. He found a farmer whom he was able to buy grass fed, humanely raised, hormone free meat from. After about a year of buying the meat for himself and his friends he started learning how he could turn buying grass fed meat into a business. Mike started the company with $10,000 of his own money and did a Kickstarter campaign that raised $215,000. Today, they are north of 30,000 subscribers with three distribution facilities. Butcher Box sells beef, chicken, and pork from hundreds of different farms across America. What is their #1 goal? To replace the butcher.

Michael ends the podcast asking Mike, “What is the one thing I didn’t ask you in this conversation that you want the audience to know?” Mike drives home the point that if you want create a successful business you have to have extreme discipline focused on seeing how you are going to get to the next day, week, quarter and beyond. Most think they need to raise lots of money. That focus needs to shift to building a great company, with a great business model, that you are able to personally manage without outside investors.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Benefits of eating grass fed meat
  • Marketing a product
  • Commodity meat vs. grass fed
  • Raising capital (or the importance of not raising capital)
  • Entrepreneurism
  • Starting a business
Oct 27, 2017

Ryan Moran is founder of Capitalism.com and Freedom Fast Lane. He started with nothing and turned himself into a successful entrepreneur. Ryan helps other self-starting high achievers build their business, reinvest their profits, find freedom in their work and move away from the 9-5 mindset.

Ryan entered college thinking his life would go down a much different path. He grew up in a religious family and went to college to become a minister. Everything changed for him while sitting in an economics class listening to the morals behind an economic system. His professor explained money as an exchange of value. This was a new concept to Ryan. Looking at money as an exchange of value made him realize making money was a positive rather than something to feel guilty about. It was a source of freedom rather than a source of greed or evil.

Ryan quickly saw capitalism and entrepreneurism as the only system where he could define the world he wanted to live in, rather than having it defined for him. As the millennial generation matures there seems to be a desire for the state to fix everything. People change the most when they see actual results that make a difference personally in their life. Ryan shares examples of people getting in the game, participating in transactions, and getting motivated. Free market allows the chance for everyone to create and have a light bulb moment. The more empowered people are, the less need for state intervention.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Intentional community
  • Capitalism
  • Free market society
  • Opportunity making products
  • Free market society
  • Capitalism vs. Cronyism
  • 2008 crash
  • Life is a gift
  • Artificial intelligence
Oct 23, 2017

Roger Ver, also known as “Bitcoin Jesus”, started his first company in Silicon Valley while still in college and made his first million before 25. Roger is a libertarian who has dedicated his life to the pursuit of getting individuals to interact outside the state system. He has been a relentless advocate for blockchain currency, pouring all his capital and energy into the startup. Also, Roger is currently working out the details of starting a non-government run country.

Roger began turning away from government while in grade school. He was learning about the military draft in school and the idea of forcing individuals into fighting seemed backwards to him. He had read a book by libertarian Murray N. Rothbard who related the draft to kidnapping and slavery. Roger now defines government as “A small group of people that claim the right to use violence against peaceful people.” There shouldn’t be an exception for government. Other humans do not have the right to take our money or order others to kill people. Why should the government?

Roger is currently starting a non-government run territory. This non-country will have no government, but instead will be run by principles of the Anarcho-Capitalism philosophy. Right now he has over $100 million dollars of private capital committed to this non-country. Money raised will be used to purchase a plot of land for the free society to operate. He has the hope of purchasing other pieces of land and continuing to grow his non-government led society. Michael finishes the conversation asking Roger, “Looking ahead, where do you see things evolving in the next five years? Will there be a rapid adoption of crypto currency? Are we potentially close to that?”

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Voluntarism
  • Libertarianism
  • Bitcoin in Tokyo
  • Victimless crimes
  • Morality
  • Free Society
Oct 20, 2017

Michael has audio books for Trend Following (fourth and fifth editions), The Complete TurtleTrader and Trend Commandments. He starts the podcast today playing the afterword to the 5th edition of Trend Following written by Larry Hite. He follows this reading with Stig Ostgaard’s white paper titled “The Origins of Trend Following” first published in Trend Commandments. Michael finishes up the podcast playing a full chapter on psychology from his newest edition of Trend Following.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Psychology of trading
  • Irrationality of people
  • Behavioral economics
  • The meaning of money
  • NLP
  • Evolution of trend following
  • How Larry Hite began trading
  • Risk management
Oct 16, 2017

Today’s combo episode consists of four classic episodes aggregated into one big modern podcast. Jack Schwager, Peter Brandt, Larry Williams and Toby Crabel are four pro traders who hopefully give every listener an aha moment.

Jack Schwager is author of the Market Wizards series and just completed his second edition of A Complete Guide to the Futures Markets: Fundamental Analysis, Technical Analysis, Trading, Spreads, and Options.

Peter Brandt is author of Diary of a Professional Commodity Trader: Lessons from 21 Weeks of Real Trading, and a trader who has been in the commodity trading space since 1976. He has traded his own proprietary account from the late 1970’s until today, and is currently entering the hedge fund world by running a multi-CTA fund-of-funds.

Larry Williams is the author of eleven books, most on stocks and commodity trading. He is also a stock and commodity trader, and politician. He has been in the trading game for over four decades and his name is well known in all trading circles.

Toby Crabel is founder of Crabel Capital Management. Toby is a short term systematic trader which is a much different trading style than trend following. Toby is also a former pro tennis player and has a philosophical nature in discussing the trading world.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Fundamentals vs. Technical analysis
  • Risk management
  • Contrarian view on fundamentals
  • Charting
  • Science vs. art in trading
  • Whipsaws
  • Exploiting trends
  • Sharpe ratio
  • Efficient market hypothesis
  • Five minute chart patterns vs. a weekly chart patterns
  • Mistakes as a novice trader
  • Averaging losers
  • Risk management
  • Upside volatility
  • Reducing incessant head chatter
  • Living in the moment of now.
  • Price movement and volume
    Price shocks
    Diversification
    Objectivism
Oct 12, 2017

Moritz Czubatinski specializes in helping traders get going. He has been traveling, trading and running a business for about 8 years. Tradeciety, his first business, was formed to help traders get started in the markets. Next, Moritz started a trading journal software company called Edgewonk. Every trader needs a journal, and when Moritz started out trading, there were no practical journals available.

Moritz started off as a professional poker player but wanted a more legitimate way of making money. He started his trading career with zero education in finance and now trades off 8 to 10 charts for 6 to 8 hours a day. He was use to playing 24 tables of poker at a time (online) so Moritz is use to the constant action. He saw trading as a perfect career shift. Another positive about making the jump to trading from poker? The playing field is constant. In poker, as you get better, the players you play against get better. In trading, the great traders are forever competing against newbies.

What is Moritz favorite market? He likes trading currency futures because it is open 24 hours a day, 5 days a week. Michael asks if this type of constant action, from a concentration and time stand point, will be more difficult for today’s generation. Are they able to sit in front of a screen 6 to 8 hours a day? Will they be as successful at it? 90% of the people Moritz mentors will not stay in day trading. Most feel miserable. Moritz watches a screen all day for work and then to relax, he plays video games. Watching screens is just what he loves to do. Michael and Moritz finish the conversation talking travel the best places to visit.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Bitcoin
  • Currencies
  • Win rates vs. Risk ratios
  • Trading time frames
  • Poker
  • Day trading
  • Winning vs. losing probabilities
  • Richard Dennis in the trading pits
  • Trading journal
  • Sleep hygiene
Oct 9, 2017

Rob Arnott is an entrepreneur, author, investor, and writer. He serves as Chairman and CEO of Research Affiliates LLC. advising on over $160 billion dollars in institutional investment assets. Rob is one of the worlds preeminent voices on investment strategy.

What was Rob like as a young man? At age 16 he was extremely mathematically inclined with an avid interest in both the stock market and astronomy. He wasn’t sure which path he wanted, but he knew his mathematical skills were good enough for a top tier job in finance, but not in astronomy. So he took his math skills and entered the world of finance.

Rob has been with quantitative investing since it’s inception in the 70’s. With the rise in computer capabilities, quant traders were able to start to make a name for themselves in the trading community. What is one of the biggest failings of the quant community? Traders have fallen into a trap of making systems so complex that the average investor can no longer understand them. He is a big fan of keeping things simple.

What is one rule Rob always sticks by? If you have an idea you think is a good, always try. There will be others that came before you, but that doesn’t mean your idea won’t be just as successful or more successful. However, if you never try, you will never know. When it comes to investing what is another rule? Diversification is key.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • An addiction to complexity
  • Fundamental indexing
  • Momentum trading
  • How to use valuation
  • Benchmarks
  • Diversification
  • Modern finance
  • Weighting your portfolio
Oct 6, 2017

Jerry Parker was one of the original TurtleTraders trained by Richard Dennis. He has had unbelievable success over his four decade career. Jerry has a straightforward way of breaking down how trend following works.

Trend following has typical highs and lows. During the lows, there will always be people pronouncing it dead. Trend following systems are built to protect capital by using diversification and built in stop-losses to counter down periods. Said another way, there is “crash protection” built into a robust trend following strategy. On the flip side, trend following systems are built to exploit the market when it is trending up.

How easy is it to get into different markets with a trend following strategy? The great thing about systematic trading is you become an instant expert in any market. As long as you have the data, you can jump right in and trade. When you are looking at price alone, you come to find that stocks are all the same – Tesla and Coffee are traded identically.

What is the most important thing to keep in mind when trading a trend following system? Having the proper leverage is key. No system is immune to risk of ruin. Sometimes you need to adjust your leverage, reduce your risk, and do whatever you can to stay in the game. Trend following, at it’s core, is a boring strategy. It is simple and that is why it works. Choose an algorithm and from there you can choose how simple you want to make your system. But everything starts with an algorithm.

Are there any resources Jerry recommends? Cliff Asness is a great resource. He is a smart, funny, and humble person that teaches valuable information to anyone that wants to listen. After all, the best way to gain knowledge is to probe the minds of successful people and learn everything you can from them.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Diversification
  • Becoming an expert in all markets
  • Risk aversion
  • Why the idea of “simple” works
  • Fall targeting
  • Buying markets on the cheap
  • Learning from experts
Oct 2, 2017

Having the right fundamental information will never guarantee success. Ray Dalio, one of the biggest traders on Wall Street says he trades off of fully automated fundamentals. If this is true what fundamentals does he choose to automate? In the same head space Larry Tentarelli forwarded Michael a tweet recently. It was a tweet from an executive associated with a big USA trading firm. This executive was asked by a business student, “What does a typical week look like for you?” His list went like this [Michael digs in]… How much time is being wasted?

If consuming that information isn’t needed then what do you use to trade? One piece of information – price. You take the price and look at the trend. Things in motion tend to stay in motion. Forming rules that you can stick to when the big trends come is key to anyone’s trading success.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Data mining
  • Managing risk based on fundamental information
  • Weekly routines
  • Cocktail party banter
  • Desert island trading
  • Fundamental trading
  • Thinking properly
Sep 29, 2017

Scott Galloway is a professor at New York University Stern School of Business teaching brand strategy and digital marketing. He has started nine firms and his weekly YouTube series has generated millions of views. Scott is also author of “The Four: The Hidden DNA of Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google.”

Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google are arguably the most influential entities in the world. These companies have deconstructed who humans are as a species and reassembled who humans are, in the form of for-profit companies. They have scaled up so fast and become so successful by understanding humans most common questions and producing answers instantly. Scott breaks down the specific reasons each of these companies have individually thrived: Google = God, Facebook = Love, Amazon = Consumption, and Apple = Sex.

Mediocre and cheap products have been pushed in years past. However, people have new tools allowing them to practice due diligence and find what product is best for them personally. A better product is the best and only way to brand in today’s marketplace. With customer reviews built into Google and Amazon, they have changed the entire course of how people buy.

These four companies have done a lot of good, but have they become so big that they have become bad for society? In some ways, they are leveraging their power to unhealthy heights. Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google yield more money and more power than some foreign governments. This has allowed them certain privileges such as tax avoidance and immunity to government oversight. What is another negative? Amazon has literally sucked the oxygen out of other top companies such as Nordstrom, Macy’s, and Sears. Facebook and Google have taken over the digital marketing world. If you are not working with Facebook or Google, then you are marketing with newspapers or magazine — rapidly declining markets. Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google are not only in zero sum markets, they are creating zero competitors.

What are some great leadership qualities from these top companies? Jeff Bezos, for example, has always kept a long term outlook on consumption rather than short-term. He also has combined fast and free service. Tim Cook has tripled the value of Apple. Apple is the first company in history to have great quality and spend extremely low on production. Facebook has shown tremendous agility in their management. Michael and Scott finish the conversation talking government, and how these companies yield their power in the political arena.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Amazon, Google, Apple, and Facebook
  • Ecosystem of Silicon Valley
  • Zero sum nature of Amazon
  • Jeff Bezos
  • Tim Cook
  • Mark Zuckerberg
  • Political views of Amazon, Google, Apple, and Facebook
  • Strong leadership qualities
  • Monopolies
Sep 25, 2017

Larry David is one guy who is totally OK with the unexpected. He wrote and starred in the hit show, Curb Your Enthusiasm. He wanted total control of writing the show and didn’t want HBO looking over his shoulder. However, the show has no script. The actors are comfortable going into the unknown and winging it. So much of our modern world is pre-packaged and scripted down to the last syllable. Larry David knows that life is all about the surprise, and people value that surprise factor.

What do these examples have in common with the stock market? Markets are unpredictable. Yes, it is necessary to have a game plan but with constant unexpected changes, you need to know what to do when things deviate from the plan. Chaos exists, there is no getting around it. To be successful in the game you must look past the chaos and know how to profit from it.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Luck in life
  • What happens when plans deviate
  • Chaos is not a pit
  • The realm
Sep 22, 2017

Jeffrey Tucker is an American economics writer of the Austrian School, an advocate of anarcho-capitalism and Bitcoin, and has authored seven books. Jeffrey’s new book, coming out September 2017, is titled “Right Wing Collectivism: The Other Threat to Liberty.”

Michael and Jeffrey start the conversation talking information. Regimes come and go, but information we share with one another cuts through governments. Interactions with others and the tools we use to spread information are what shapes history, rather than governments trying to put their spin on it. Government officials are not visionaries, they do not define the world, they do not create history. They spend their term in office gearing up to get elected for their next term in office. The more responsibility taken out of government’s hands the better. This leads us to Bitcoin…

Why is Bitcoin so important? Bitcoin represents freedom. It’s an international currency, trades the same globally and has increased in value over time. Jeffery has been studying monetary theory since he was an undergraduate. He wrote his thesis on the gold standard and assumed he had the monetary system figured out. So naturally, when Bitcoin came out, he dismissed the idea. After a few years went by, he was forced to acknowledge the advancement of crypto currency. He now looks at markets far differently than he did in the first part of his career. He knows that the markets know much more than any person could ever understand.

Jeffrey switches the conversation to another passionate subject for him, child labor laws. Youth have bought into the idea of needing a college degree to get the right job. Parents see pushing higher education on their children as a way of guaranteeing their children’s success. Unfortunately, degrees are not necessary in today’s age. Youth unemployment and child labor is a major leading factor to issues later in life. Many kids never have their first job until after they graduate from college and every year thousands of college students graduate still dependent on their parents.

Michael and Jeffrey finish up the podcast discussing corporate taxes and building digital walls. The American economy would experience spectacular gains if corporate taxes were slashed. Cutting personal income tax would be nice, however corporate income taxes being cut is the first phase of reform. Our economy also is being hurt by slowing down the flow of information and trying to block it. Is the world going in the direction of building digital walls? Are governments slowing down growth potential by blocking information? Absolutely.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Liberty
  • Friedrich Hayek
  • Crypto currency
  • Ledger technology
  • Block chains
  • Excessive waves of hysteria
  • College debt
  • Tax laws
  • Trump administration
  • Nation state
  • Building blocks for a civilized society
Sep 18, 2017

Recently after running sprints, Michael decided to walk home a different way. He ended up walking next to a woman with an artificial foot. She was about 4’9″, 75lbs, missing a foot but looked as if she was still kicking ass. From Michael’s perspective, she had no excuses. She was not sitting at home, complaining. Too many these days complain about their weight, gender, political views, political correctness, etc. — and use anything they can as an excuse for why life is unfair.

How do you break free from that mentality? What is the process? What system should be put in place? Creating a routine is a great place to start and has many self-help advantages. Having a routine can help center a person and allow them to measure and see personal achievement.

News prevents us from living authentically. It is not real. It is something thrown at us on a daily basis with an agenda by those creating it. The same can be said for politics. A true experience is you walking down the street and noticing what is going on — taking in the sights, sounds and smells of your environment and making decisions about your life based on those experiences. As shown in news and in politics, this type of thinking is rapidly disappearing. There is nothing rational about how people think. People are crazy and that will never change.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Having a system/routine
  • Life is a series of choices
  • Finding meaning in life
  • Lemmings
  • How your actions define you
  • Learning from others and experiences
  • American politics
Sep 15, 2017

Rayner Teo is a 29-year old self-made, independent, ex-prop trader from Singapore. He also is the most followed trader in Singapore. Where does Rayner stand, in numbers, with social media followers? He has about 22,000 followers on YouTube and his Facebook community consists of about 15,000. Most of his followers love what he does, however, with every public figure there are always haters. Rayner gives his perspective on his social media reach and how to deal with trolls.

Rayner entered the military (mandatory) at age 19. 97% of men entering the military end up in the same training camp, however Rayner was placed in an elite camp of men who are the first to go into combat — due to a glitch on his part in his application. Even though life was hard during his time in the military, it did award him his first “aha” moment — he realized his mind was much stronger than his body. He was able to take his body far past limitations that his mind had set. The military also promoted a mind frame of excellence, and that has been a driving force in his life.

Throughout the episode Rayner expands on: the importance of charting wins and charting losses, the true reality of trading, preparing for the big losses so you can wait for the big wins and taking responsibility for your losses so there is opportunity to learn from them.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Social media
  • Pitfalls of trading contests
  • Charting performance
  • Predicting trading outcomes
  • Best trading strategies for part time traders
  • Filtering out noise
  • Taking 100% responsibility for the good and bad in life
Sep 11, 2017

Dan Pena is a high performance coach, philanthropist, businessman and author. He has seen every type of business imaginable. He brings an attitude that inspires and provokes action.

The pussification of America has come to fruition through low self-esteem individuals creating a snowflake generation. Youth today are being raised by beta males who aren’t teaching them how to live strong, persistent and driven lives. Dan explains why the lack of alpha males in today’s society is the root of the politically correct driven culture.

When someone has a beta personality, they tend to be less than a high performance achiever. High performance people succeed because they get things done. They walk the walk on a consistent basis. They do not live a sheltered, PC life. How do they accomplish this? Picking the right friends is the first key to success. Pushing yourself to be around others who inspire, will lead to you being inspired. When kids are around other kids looking for success, they are given a much higher probability of becoming successful.

Dan doesn’t have a subtle, gentle teaching style – as anyone can sense from this podcast. His students regularly ask him, “Why are you so mean? Why do you use such harsh language?” He responds by saying, “Because life is hard.” Most people want change, but they only want change that conforms to their definition — and that is not change. That is staying the same.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Lack of leadership in today’s society
  • Alpha males
  • Beta males
  • Getting out of victim mode
  • Political correctness syndrome
  • Snowflakes
Sep 8, 2017

Robert Sutton is Professor of Management science at the Stanford Engineering School and researcher in the field of Evidence-based management. Sutton is also the best-selling author of “The No Asshole Rule.” What does it mean to live in a “no asshole environment”? It means to weed out the people who demean and make you and others feel horrible. He gives the science and craft behind how to deal with assholes, how to prune these people from your life and get out of negative situations.

But the question ever since that book has been:

“Help, I’m dealing with an asshole! What can I do?”

Sutton has heard that question asked in a thousand different ways. He answers the question in “The Asshole Survival Guide: How to Deal with People Who Treat You Like Dirt”. It shifts focus from building civilized workplaces to providing relief for anybody who feels plagued and pushed around by assholes.

The Asshole Survival Guide delivers a cogent and methodical game plan. Sutton starts with diagnosis—what kind of asshole problem, exactly, are you dealing with? From there, he provides field-tested, evidence-based, and sometimes surprising strategies for dealing with assholes—avoiding them, outwitting them, disarming them, sending them packing, and developing protective psychological armor.

Ultimately, this survival guide is about developing an outlook and personal plan that will help you preserve the sanity in your work life, and will prevent all those perfectly good days from being ruined by some jerk.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • The no asshole rule
  • The role of assholes in entrepreneurship
  • Steve Jobs
  • Demeaned and de-energized
  • Self-awareness
  • Depression in relation to to workplace
  • Weeding out nasty people from your life
  • The asshole tax
  • Avoiding “the crazy”
Sep 4, 2017

Jason Calacanis is a venture capitalist, entrepreneur, angel investor, author, blogger and has years of perspective when it comes to investing in start ups. His new book is “Angel: How to Invest in Technology Startups–Timeless Advice from an Angel Investor Who Turned $100,000 into $100,000,000”. Even if you never plan on becoming an angel investor, his book is a great look at how the modern economy works.

Technology is accelerating at an ever-increasing rate and Jason argues that there are approximately 30 million jobs that will disappear in upcoming years due to advancements in technology. He wrote his book to try and help people step away from the usual way of thinking and look at where the world is moving. For example, the cheapest car you could buy today is far and above more sophisticated than the most expensive car you could have bought 20 years ago. When Jason evaluates a company, he looks at a couple things: What is in the best interest of society? And what is the best technology that we can use to get there?

What is Silicon Valley like through the eyes of someone living and breathing it? Jason talks about Silicon Valley as the center of the world. There is an infectious need to look for the next $100 billion dollar idea rather than the next million dollar idea. It’s also very liberal, political and quirky. It is where the largest amount of high power tech companies derive from.

What is the biggest factor in becoming a successful angel investor? Success in angel investing comes down to portfolio diversification. You need to cast a wide net, knowing you are going to have a lot of loser companies. There are massive implied odds. The upside to finding a winning company far exceeds any amount of losses you may incur. Michael relates this to the Babe Ruth effect and Jason puts his own spin on it, “Finding a winning company is more like the equivalent of a grand slam scoring 100 runs rather than just four.”

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Creating a global footprint
  • Who is able to export their ideas around the world
  • Silicon Valley
  • Chinese border controls
  • Unicorn companies
  • Portfolio diversification
  • Risk aversion
Sep 1, 2017

Laura Doyle is bestselling author of “The Surrendered Wife”, and her newest work is “The Empowered Wife.” Relationships are a skill just like everything else in life. They can be hard and sometimes and having some basic survival tools could make the difference between having a failed relationship or a thriving relationship. Laura gives a perspective and tools that we can all use in our modern day relationships.

Laura went through thousands of hours and thousands of dollars of marriage counseling that did not work before she tried asking her friends what they were doing right in their relationships. She wanted to learn what was working for them and what hadn’t worked for them over the years. Her main “aha” moment was when she realized the problems her and her husband were having were self inflicted.

Who has the most power in a relationship? How do you make your spouse feel respected? What are some main differences emotionally between men and women? What type of language do men respond best to? What type of language do women respond best to? Laura answers these questions and more on today’s podcast.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Different traits between men and women
  • Femininity
  • Men and Women are more powerful together
  • Self care
  • Spouse fulfilling prophecy
Aug 28, 2017

Michael dives in for a weekly monologue. Listen at your own peril.

Aug 25, 2017

Richard Clarke is co-author of “Warnings: Finding Cassandras to Stop Catastrophes.” Richard was also the former National Coordinator for Security, Infrastructure Protection and Counter-terrorism for the United States. He worked for the government starting with Ronald Reagan’s Presidency and continued to move up the ladder until he resigned in 2003 under President George W. Bush’s presidency.

Was there a starting point to Islamist terrorism? Were American’s affected much by the Gulf War? What was some red flags raised about the World Trade Center bombing? What are Cassandras? What did we know, and what were some warning signs at the time of 9-11? Why did we still go to war after 9-11 when the evidence was so lacking to go into Iraq? Michael and Richard go through these questions and many more throughout the podcast. Michael ends the interview asking Richard, “How can you see the next 10 to 20 years unfolding?”

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • The Gulf War
  • Islamist terrorism
  • World Trade Center bombing
  • Osama bin Laden
  • The underestimation of Al-Qaida
  • Forcing democracy on the world
  • 9-11
  • War on Iraq
  • Global Warming
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