Urges

Market forces need to be understood…

…to win in the markets.

When do market forces start affecting us fully?

When we put our own money on the line.

That’s why…

…don’t…

…ever…

learn finance from someone who…

…doesn’t put his or her money regularly on the line.

When we put our money on the line, market forces start changing our psyche.

If we’re holding funds, we develop the urge to buy.

If we’re holding underlyings, we develop the urge to sell.

Early in our career, we give in to these urges at precisely the wrong time, resulting in loss-creation.

As we become more seasoned, we are able to resist such urges, till conditions provide profit.

As our market career continues, this is where fine-tuning matters the most.

How long are we able to resist the urge to sell as the market climbs?

How long are we able to resist the urge to buy as the market crashes?

These are pivotal questions.

One of them is playing out now.

As new highs are made, many have already sold out.

Some have sold partly.

Very few retailers are still holding on to whatever they might have left.

It’s institutions buying and selling.

New entry at these levels are a dizzy proposition.

I won’t hide that as markets climb higher, I experience a very strong urge to sell.

It’s…

…over-compelling.

How do I deal with it?

When such urge is too compelling, one does oblige.

One sells…

…little…

…and that’s the tough one.

One needs to oblige the urge lest some piston bursts, but simultaneously, one needs to hold on to as much as one can…

…since markets are on a roll.

One can’t learn this from a book, or in college.

After selling early many, many times, for more than a decade and a half, one finally learns to hold on to a chunk of one’s underlyings as markets go ballistic.

As heights get higher, this mechanism will make one sell, though, little by little…

…and that’s ok.

Let’s make sure that we do keep holding a chunk of the stuff we really like, though, after having taken the principal out.

Otherwise, how will we allow multibaggers to blossom?

Easier said than done, I know!

Sheer Moat Investing is not Antifragile 

There we go again. 

That word. 

It’s not going to leave us. 

Nicholas Nassim Taleb has coined together what is possibly the market-word of the century. 

Antifragile. 

We’re equity-people. 

We want to remain so. 

We don’t wish to desert equity just because it is a fragile asset-class by itself. 

No. 

We wish to make our equity-foray as antifragile as possible. 

First-up, we need to understand, that when panic sets in, everything falls. 

The fearful weak hand doesn’t differentiate between a gem and a donkey-stock. He or she just sells and sells alike. 

Second-up, we need to comprehend that this is the age of shocks. There will be shocks. Shock after shock after shock. Such are the times. Please acknowledge this, and digest it. 

To make our equity-play antifragile, we’ll need to incorporate solid strategies to account for above two facts. 

We love moats, right? 

No problem. 

We’ll keep our moats. 

Just wait for moat-stocks to show value. Then, we’ll pick them up. 

We go in during the aftermath of a shock. Otherwise, we don’t. 

We go in with small quanta. Time after time after time. 

Voila. 

We’re  already sufficiently antifragile. 

No magic. 

Just sheer common sense. 

We’re still buying quality stocks. 

We’re buying them when they’re not fragile, or lesser fragile. 

We’re going in each time with minute quanta such that the absence of these quanta (after they’ve gone in) doesn’t alter our financial lives. We’re saving the rest of our pickled corpus for the next shock, after which the gem-stock will be yet lesser fragile. 

Yes, we’re averaging down, only because we’re dealing with gems. We’ll never average down with donkey-stocks. We might trade these, averaging up. We won’t be investing in them. 

Thus, we asymptotically approach antifragility in a gem-stock. 

Over time, after many cycles, the antifragile bottom-level of the gem-stock should be moving significantly upwards. 

Gem-stock upon gem-stock upon gem-stock. 

We’re done already.