How to get serious about making money trading

In Australia, if you’re serious about getting the job done effectively and efficiently, you might say: “I’m not here to f*** spiders.” Many traders act like they are, indeed, here to f*** spiders. If you’re making soup, you first need a good stock. Stock isn’t exciting. Everyone has stock. Garnish is exciting, but you can’t …

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What P&L Swings Can I Expect as a Trader?

Many beginner traders don’t realize how variable the p&l of a high-performing trading strategy really is. Here’s an example… I simulated ten different 5 year GBM processes with expected annual returns of  20% and annualized volatility of 10%. (If you speak Sharpe Ratios, I’m simulating a strategy within known Sharpe 2 characteristics.) I plotted the …

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What Assumptions Are You Making About “Time” In Your Trading?

I recently listened to a podcast about one of the earliest human civilizations – the ancient Sumerians. Apparently, our system of minutes, hours, and days has been with us since the time of these ancient people, who developed it based on a simple base-12 counting system: There are three joints in each of the four …

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Get Rich Quick Trading Strategies (and why they don’t work)

Every aspiring millionaire who comes to the markets armed with some programming ability has implemented a systematic Get Rich Quick (GRQ) trading strategy. Of course, they don’t work. Deep down even the greenest of newbies knows this. Yet, still, we are compelled to give them a try, just once, just for fun (or so we …

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A Review of Zorro for Systematic Trading

One of the keys to running a successful systematic trading business is a relentless focus on high return-on-investment activities. High ROI activities include: Implementing new trading strategies within a proven framework. An example might be to implement a portfolio of pairs trades in the equity market. Scaling existing strategies to new instruments or markets. For …

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Are SPX Options Expensive?

Options are non-linear financial products that allow you to do useful things that you can’t easily do with other financial instruments. Let me give a specific illustration of options being useful… The chart below shows the monthly cumulative % performance of our RW systematic trading portfolio since we started trading it in October 2018. The …

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A Quant’s Approach to Drawdown:
The Cold Blood Index

In part 1 of this series, we talked about how a market-savvy systematic trader would approach a period of drawdown in a trading strategy. Specifically, they’d: do the best job possible of designing and building their trading strategy to be robust to a range of future market conditions chill out and let the strategy do …

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A Quant’s Approach to Drawdown: Part 1

Imagine you’ve tinkered for days or even weeks, perfecting a strategy idea that’s showing a whole lot of promise. You’ve meticulously tweaked a mouth-watering Sharpe Ratio out of your backtests….it even survived costs. YES! Systems go, let’s trade it. Imagine this new strategy enters a drawdown.…maybe a lengthy one….maybe from day one! How would you …

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