Trap for Investors (6) - The Best Trading System in the World for Sales

For anyone who has spent some time in the stock market, he/she must has come across some advertisements on selling of outstanding profitable trading system, courses, stock pick, etc. that promise to have your return of investment multiplied a couple of times in short period of time.

Now before we discuss on such advertisements, let me bring out a true story that happened in Niagara Falls:-


Back on June 30, 1859, a man by the name of Charles Blondin accomplished an amazing feat. He crossed Niagara Falls on a tightrope. About 5,000 people had turned out to see his performance as he had ran an ad in the New York Times earlier on.

The rope stretched 1,100 feet (nearly the length of 4 football fields) across the falls at a height of 160 feet (about 16 stories high).

Before Charles began his first attempt to cross the falls, he asked the crowd a question. “How many of you believe I can cross the falls on that tightrope?” The crowd just applauded and cheered to encourage him to start the performance. Charles not only safely made across and back on the tightrope, but also increased the difficult of the performance each time by pushing a wheelbarrow, on stilts and blindfolded.

As the crowd was so amazed with his skill, he then asked “How many of you believe that I can cross the Falls with somebody on my back?” The crowd applauded and cheered this man that they now believe in his ability to do so. Then Charles asked for a volunteer, “Who will volunteer?” The crowd was silent. He then pointed out one man standing nearby, “How about you?” The man replied, ”Hardly, you don’t think I am going to risk my life like that, do you?” and he turn away.

Next Charles pointed out another man, “And what about you?” The man replied, “I believe. In fact, I have no doubt at all.” The man then proceeded to climb on the back of Charles Blondin and they headed across the falls. The crowd waited breathlessly while they crossed and roared their approval once they completed the crossing. What they didn't know was that the man who crossed on Blondin's back was Harry Colcord, his manager.

You see Harry Colcord knew how good Charles Blondin was and fully trusted him. His faith was secure, as the object of his faith, Charles Blondin, was trustworthy and had proven himself so over the years.

Reference: An Illustration of Faith

Yes. This story is about the "Faith" that we have on "some one" or "some thing". And, let come back to think about "The Best Trading System in the World for Sales"...

If those people, who are selling their Best Trading System, have Faith in their own system that can Multiply on the users' investment in short period of time, why do they just want to sell it for a couple of hundreds or thousands dollar????

One should be aware that for any good system, when it become public, it loses its effectiveness.(<- click here for some back testing results for many popular indicators that are used by the public.) The profits from the stock market are not unlimited. The profits have to tie to the transacted volume. Take for example, some penny stocks can get double, triple or even more in a short time. But if one take into the consideration of actual transacted volume.... He will see that it is only able to feed some speculators, not the major public. That is when a big pool of people want to take the profits, they have to sell the stocks, which would lead to excess supply... and the profits may suddenly vanish if not become negative. :-)

So, are you going to be the volunteer to use the system that the designers themselves do not have the full faith on it?

Well, one will never find peace of mind by letting the financial market to erode their hard-earned money, nor allowing others to determine their job stability in a compnay. And yet one can not simply buy a good trading system to depend on... So, is there any solution to escape the rat race? What about develop your own? If it is to big of a task for one person, why not workout a Master Mind Team to handle a bigger task?

"Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe,
the mind of man can achieve."
- Napoleon Hill

Trap for Investors (5) - Derivatives Market

A friend had forwarded me a very interesting story that illustrates how the derivative markets created the bubbles. (I was told the author is an accountant, but don't know the author's name.)


Explanation of Derivative Markets

Heidi is the proprietor of a bar in Detroit. She realizes that virtually all of her customers are unemployed alcoholics and, as such, can no longer afford to patronize her bar. To solve this problem, she comes up with a new marketing plan that allows her customers to drink now, but pay later.

Heidi keeps track of the drinks consumed on a ledger (thereby granting the customers' loans). Word gets around about Heidi's "drink now, pay later" marketing strategy and, as a result, increasing numbers of customers flood into Heidi's bar. Soon she has the largest sales volume for any bar in Detroit.

By providing her customers freedom from immediate payment demands, Heidi gets no resistance when, at regular intervals, she substantially increases her prices for wine and beer, the most consumed beverages. Consequently, Heidi's gross sales volume increases massively.

A young and dynamic vice-president at the local bank recognizes that these customer debts constitute valuable future assets and increases Heidi's borrowing limit. He sees no reason for any undue concern, since he has the debts of the unemployed alcoholics as collateral.

At the bank's corporate headquarters, expert traders figure a way to make huge commissions, and transform these customer loans into DRINKBONDS, ALKIBONDS and PUKEBONDS. These securities are then bundled and traded on international security markets.

Naive investors don't really understand that the securities being sold to them as AAA secured bonds are really the debts of unemployed alcoholics. Nevertheless, the bond prices continuously climb, and the securities soon become the hottest-selling items for some of the nation's leading brokerage houses.

One day, even though the bond prices are still climbing, a risk manager at the original local bank decides that the time has come to demand payment on the debts incurred by the drinkers at Heidi's bar. He so informs Heidi.

Heidi then demands payment from her alcoholic patrons, but being unemployed alcoholics they cannot pay back their drinking debts. Since Heidi cannot fulfill her loan obligations she is forced into bankruptcy. The bar closes and the eleven employees lose their jobs.

Overnight, DRINKBONDS, ALKIBONDS and PUKEBONDS drop in price by 90%. The collapsed bond asset value destroys the banks liquidity and prevents it from issuing new loans, thus freezing credit and economic activity in the community. The suppliers of Heidi's bar had granted her generous payment extensions and had invested their firms' pension funds in the various BOND securities. They find they are now faced with having to write off her bad debt and with losing over 90% of the presumed value of the bonds. Her wine supplier also claims bankruptcy, closing the doors on a family business that had endured for three generations, her beer supplier is taken over by a competitor, who immediately closes the local plant and lays off 150 workers.

Fortunately though, the bank, the brokerage houses and their respective executives are saved and bailed out by a multi-billion dollar no-strings attached cash infusion from their cronies in Government. The funds required for this bailout are obtained by new taxes levied on employed, middle-class, non-drinkers who have never been in Heidi's bar.

Now do you understand?


And, one more IMPORTANT QUESTION is that:-
Is this was an Accident by mistake or an Intention by design?

There are other effects that the derivative markets have actually affected the traditional stock market operation. Such as:

1) Insiders Buying/Selling information used to be an excellent guide for predicting the short to mid-term price movement. By law, insiders must report their activities for buying or selling stocks. But, with derivatives, insiders can now using put or call options to make profits which need not to be reported. And not to forget that many derivatives such as options are higly leveraged. Therefore, Insiders Buying/Selling information is not so much useful as compare to the past.

2) As people are now able to use puts and calls to profit from the market, the classical Tape Reading Technique is no more as accurate as the past.

In real life, many of those who lack of money are not because that they don't know how to make money. They are lacking of money mainly because they don't spend their money wisely and more critically is that they do wrong investment with their money.

"The state of being rich is not how much money you had already
earned in the past, but how fast you can have it grown
against the inflation in the future."
-KH Tang