Winning on Psychology

Hey!

🙂

It’s been a while…

Didn’t feel the need to write since beginning May…

There’s a thing about words.

When they want to come out…

…they do…

…and one should let them.

Right, and there’s a need for words, since…

…(wouldn’t you say),…

it’s time for a status check.

Where do we stand?

Positions are running.

How long?

When to cut?

What’s the plan?

Hmmmm.

Frankly, I don’t believe in cutting something I like and am convinced about.

Well, there’ll be no cutting of anything I’m convinced about.

If and when we reach euphoria levels, we’ll take another call about what kind of profit one is booking from one’s high-conviction holdings.

It’s very possible, though, that there will be no profit booked here.

Why?

High conviction holdings translate into multibaggers.

If I’m booking even part of such a holding, I’m lessening my quantum of multibagger-holding in the future.

So that’s sorted – high-conviction holdings – not booking.

Maybe, at extreme euphoria, we might take the cream off the top of an overflowing glass.

Now let’s come to other holdings.

Along the way, one’s conviction in certain holdings tends to waiver.

We’re booking all of these.

How much?

Completely.

When?

At extreme euphoria.

How to know when that’s happening?

Look for signs.

Least likely people will start behaving like market-experts.

You’ll start getting calls from lay-people, asking whether they should double their SIP.

Other-field mavericks have now become F&O maniacs, voluming seven figures per day as if it’s a normal activity, like eating food.

You’re suddenly being asked about all kinds of stocks running at absolute peaks, whether they are good investments.

Don’t get irritated.

Listen.

You’re privy to the best possible indicator – human psychology.

This one will never change.

Earlier, you fell here.

Now, this avenue has become your guiding stone to gauge market bottoms, and tops.

It’s a win-win for you.

Nadir Non-Focus

Scared to enter?

Things look gloomy?

Forever?

NO.

Look at History.

Markets are where they are despite what’s happened. 

Governments, scams, frauds, bribes, wars, disasters – the list is endless. 

In the end, we are still where we are.

Is that good news?

YES.

What does it mean?

Growth – reflects in the corresponding market – eventually. 

Sure – we might not be growing at 7%+.

We definitely are growing at 5%+, perhaps at 5.5%+.

In a few years, growth could well accelerate.

Why?

Earning hands are growing.

So are aspirations. 

The consumption story in India is alive and kicking. 

What we’re seeing currently is a result of eighteen months of bad news. 

Such a long spate of negative stuff churning out gets the morale down. 

People start letting go of their holdings in despair. 

Maybe there’s another eighteen months of negativity left – who knows. 

That’s not the right question.

Don’t worry yourself about the bottom and when and where it is going to come. 

Why?

Please answer something far more fundamental first.

If you don’t have the courage to go in at this level (with small quanta of course, we do follow the small entry quantum strategy)…

…do you really thing…

…that you will muster up…

…anything remotely resembling courage…

…at a number that is let’s say 20% below current levels?

Gotcha there?

Happening…or not happening?

Is that the question?

Hmmmm. 

Valid question. 

On any particular day, we are confronted with this question. Multiple times. 

Life itself throws this question at us often, at pivot-points or crossroads. 

Well, why should the markets be left behind? You guessed it. They portray this behaviour…also. 

Take the cmp of an underlying. 

Is it crossing resistance? Breaking support? Forming a pivot? Peaking? Bottoming? What have you. 

Is whatever’s happening happening or not happening?

What do you do?

Aha. Got you there. Who said anything about doing something? The question about doing something is a wrong question. 

However, it becomes a practical question, because, well, who has patience today?

Yeah, who’s willing to wait and watch, right?

So, in all practicality, what do you do?

First you try not to ask the question. You just observe. 

Then you get jumpy, and do ask the question, simultaneously answering it by telling yourself to wait and watch. 

Next you’re seen egging the markets on for an outcome. 

That’s not good. 

Markets are not going to behave as per your wishes. 

Ok, so here’s the game-changer. 

Change your activity. 

Yes, do something else. 

Put your system on auto-pilot, and engage your mind elsewhere. 

Like I’m writing this article here. 

What’s happening in the backdrop?

My USDINR trade is going nowhere. 

Couldn’t catch a decent portion of the move on the GBP breakout, and now I can’t seem to get a new trade triggered.

My stock-screener refuses to find me a stock in the agri-sector which is to my liking.

My iPad’s gone all wonky and is acting pricy about photo and music syncs. 

Family-health-insurance-premium due…

… got to get that nomination going on my demat…

… AC gas leak…

… document sorting overdue…

… and so on and so forth. 

Meanwhile, I write this article. 

I’m at peace. Writing relaxes me. It benefits the reader too. It’ll live on after me. It is positivity in action. It gives me a sense of purpose. I forget about all the things that are happening and / or not happening. 

That’s what you are going to do. You are going to find an activity that takes you away, to another plane, for just a while, while your other stuff is still undecided. 

There are some things, though, that one needs to make happen. Sometimes one needs to keep pushing. Non-pursuance would be like giving up. 

In this event, you keep banging your head against a wall. 

Two things are going to happen. 

Either you are going to get hurt and back off…

… or, the wall is going to break down.

Yes, I do admit, that there are some very select areas in life that where one decides to bang full-on. 

We’re not afraid. When push comes to shove, we’re all there and ready for some head-banging. 

However, wrt all the other not-so-drastic things, we’re conserving our energies and going to our happy-and-safe-place till these not-so-drastic things are yet undecided. 

Yeah, we’re happier and healthier that way. 

Meet the BenchWarmers

Yeah, one too many real-estate agents (REAs) have popped up over the last decade.

Any Tom, Dick or Harry (TD/H) who has nothing to do becomes an REA.

Small little office, empty chairs, one TD/H reading a newspaper or watching TV… familiar?

Meet the bench-warmers.

Real-estate is in the dumps.

Sure.

Real-estate bill is in the offing. Might come out soon, might come out later.

Circle-rates are trying to bring the black-money component down.

Government A-B-C categorization is all warped.

Meanwhile, deals have dried. Volumes are zilch.

Is this the bottom?

Who says yes?

I’m afraid not too many have that conviction.

I don’t either.

You see, at bottoms, there’s blood on the streets.

Do you see any blood?

Nope.

Is black-money receding?

Slightly, maybe. Some say significantly. Some say insignificantly. Wishy-washy answers at best. Let’s put this under the “not-sure” category.

Are the bench-warmers packing up their benches?

Nope.

Are more bench-warmers springing up, in anticipation of volume-spikes?

Yeah.

Is this going to make their situation only worse?

Yeah, probably.

When will things start moving finally?

No one knows for certain.

Under the circumstances, how can one call this a bottom?

We’re still way above 2005 levels.

It’s not a bottom, or so I think. Maybe I’m mistaken. However, that’s my opinion.

All right, if it’s not a bottom, what is it then?

Time to wait and watch?

Yeah.

Time to pick up (a property) already?

Probably not.

Time to nibble at a real-estate stock?

Maybe. Just make sure the fundamentals are good and debt-component is negligible. And nibble. That’s all.

What about the bench-warmers? How should they act?

Use their office to generate income. Any which legal way, through any vocation. If not, rent it out with fool-proof lease deed. That’ll generate income too.

Bench-warming degenerates our faculties. It shouldn’t be practised over a prolonged period of time.