Michael Covel speaks with Dr. Jean-Philippe Bouchaud. Bouchaud is Chairman of the multi-strategy quantitative hedge fund Capital Fund Management (5B+ AUM) and co-supervisor of the research team. He is a well known authority in the field of Econphysics, co-author of "Theory of Financial Risks and Derivative Pricing", a Professor of École Polytechnique where he teaches Complex Systems and has his Ph.D in theoretical physics from École Normale Supérieure. Covel and Bouchaud discuss Bouchaud's physics background and how it collided with the world of classical economics; the Black-Scholes model, and it’s still use; experimenting with simulation; Bouchaud and his colleague's paper, "Two Centuries of Trend Following"; the efficient market hypothesis; why the existence of trends is one of the most statistically significant anomalies in financial markets; how trends predate trend following; why classical economics has no framework through which to understand "wild markets"; benign randomness vs. wild randomness; accepting uncertainty; and differences between physicists and economists. For more information on Jean-Philippe Bouchaud, visit www.cfm.fr. Complimentary trend following DVD from Michael Covel: trendfollowing.com/win.
Have you noticed with equity markets at all time highs there are starting to be justifications again? It reminds Michael Covel of... The “this time is different” routine. Covel moves on to talk about Timothy Geithner’s new book, and how Warren Buffett approached him after bailouts. Covel talks about crony capitalism on both sides of the aisle. Rigged markets at all-time highs are not fun. It may feel great at the time, but there’s a hangover. Covel shifts gears and talks about classical economics. It’s all about assumptions that become axioms. Covel discusses the Black-Scholes option pricing formula, and how the edges are indeed important. Covel can’t predict or tell you when or how, but he can tell you that if you’re in a position with a system to take advantage of price movements, you can benefit on the upside, the downside, and the black swan side. Next, Covel gives an example of someone who was mugged outside of a bar and became a mathematical savant after brain injury. Given these gifts, will he work for Wall Street? There are too many variables to make a prediction, he says. Next, Covel moves onto a TED talk. He’s thought they’ve always been enjoyable--until now. It turns out the TED operation operates like a cult, as evidenced by a clip from the Joe Rogan podcast. Covel wraps it all back to classical economics--it’s a cult, too. Want a free trend following DVD? Go to trendfollowing.com/win.
Michael Covel speaks with Nir Eyal. Eyal is an educator, author, and entrepreneur who is all about connecting psychology, technology, and business. His new book is titled “Hooked: How To Build Habit Forming Products”. Covel and Eyal discuss how behavior and habits can be engineered, and how technology changes our behavior; the moral implications of habit forming activities; the difference between habits and addictions; breaking “the hook”; the four areas that “the hook” goes through: trigger, action, variable reward, and investment; the IKEA example and how value can be built; Eyal’s mentors and influences; the importance of social feedback from your community; the WhatsApp deal, and how to deal with your “insane jealousy” of the messaging app deal; getting equal pay for equal work, and how that might be embedded in our DNA; and the importance of interface changes when it comes to revolutionary changes in technology. For more information on Nir Eyal, go to nirandfar.com. Want a free trend following DVD? Go to trendfollowing.com/win.
Michael Covel speaks with Brett Steenbarger. Steenbarger is Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, NY. Steenbarger and Covel discuss what a “flow state” is, and why it’s important; how Steenbarger has seen flow connect to the trading world, and the importance of matching your level of difficulty and challenge; risk and risk tolerance; the logical and psychological sides to risk; “what have you done for me lately” attitude for investors; why we don’t grow if we stay within our comfort zones; process vs. outcome; the psychological burden of certain fee structures; some of the common characteristics of successful traders; slow thinking, deep thinking, and fast thinking; where we’re headed regarding prescription drugs related to the mind; trend trading vs. mean reversion; contextualism; trend following vs. momentum trading; and how people actually behave vs. how they describe their behavior. For more information on Brett Steenbarger, go to traderfeed.blogspot.com. Want a free trend following DVD? Go to trendfollowing.com/win.
Michael Covel speaks with Larry Hite and Alex Greyserman today on the podcast. Hite is a hedge fund manager and is one of the forefathers of system trading. He was famously featured in the Market Wizards book. A few years ago he started ISAM with Stanley Fink. Greyserman has 25 years of experience in the CTA industry, and was originally hired by Larry Hite at Mint. Greyserman is Chief Scientist at ISAM (PhD in Statistics). He is also a professor at Columbia University. Covel, Hite, and Greyserman discuss Singapore, and Covel’s recent excursions in Asia; how the game has stayed the same despite zero interest rate policy; what people are missing when they say “trend following is dead”; how you’ll never get perfection; their 800 year study, the premise, and what was found out; measuring human nature; the difference between divergent and convergent strategies; risk management; having “perfect” knowledge; using long trends and getting whipsawed in shorter trends; the asset class of trend following compared to the NASDAQ buy and hold, etc.; what’s changed about human nature through all the booms and busts; insurance, hedging your risk, and the risk transference process; asymmetrical leverage; adjusting to new environments; how those that survive are the most adaptable to the environment; and how trend following automatically adjusts to what’s happening. More: www.isam.com. Want a free trend following DVD? Go to trendfollowing.com/win.
Michael Covel talks with Sharon Moalem, a physician and author. Moalem’s previous book, “Survival Of The Sickest”, was a New York Times bestseller. His newest book is called “Inheritance”. Covel and Moalem discuss Rafael Nadal as an example of digging deep in genetics; how our bodies are constantly in a state of deconstruction and reconstruction; how DNA is under constant modification; genetic personalized medicine; "Jeff the chef" and an example of specific dietary needs; dysmorphology and analyzing the hands, feet, and face of an individual; Gregor Mendel and his pea experiments in genetics; how your behavior can dictate your genetic destiny; the future of personalized genetic medicine; critics and misunderstandings of genetics; and vitamins on an individual basis. Science in life, science in trading, both excite me. Moalem pulls back the curtain on where healthcare is headed. Will it get there in our lifetimes? Wait and see is all we can do. Want a free trend following DVD? Go to trendfollowing.com/win.
Michael Covel speaks with Robin Hanson, a professor of economics at George Mason University. Covel and Hanson discuss the definition of prediction markets; how prediction markets are used politically; comparing the prediction markets to the financial markets; Vernon Smith and coming up with the “why” for booms and busts; dealing with a complex world based on our limited abilities; steering towards humanity’s future; Hanson’s physics background, and how he came to where prediction markets became a passion; how prediction markets can make us pay more attention to the truth; Hayek and Mises, and some of their thinking early on; what taboos and idealogical beliefs might stop one from making optimal decisions; if people have employed particular trading strategies to the prediction markets; stop losses as information and as risk preference; setting up a market to bet on geopolitical events in the Middle East, and the controversy based around that; why DC politicians often cannot handle the research Hanson does; and why Hanson has elected to have his head cryonically preserved after medical death based on a cost-benefit analysis. For more information on Robin Hanson go to overcomingbias.com or hanson.gmu.edu. This is a podcast that at first might not appear useful to the trend following community, but it most certainly adds great value. Want a free trend following video: www.trendfollowing.com/win.
Today on the podcast Michael Covel talks with Harry Markowitz, the founder of modern finance and Nobel Prize winner. Markowitz also appeared in Covel’s documentary film a few years back, “Broke: The New American Dream”. Covel and Markowitz talk about Justin Fox and “The Myth Of The Rational Market”; Markowitz’s beginnings, and the Nobel Prize; Markowitz’s 1952 paper; how Markowitz felt about some of his prescriptions and ideas being interpreted into dogma; why Wall Street was not interested in Markowitz’s theories at one time; diversification for the right reason; Markowitz’s new four-volume book; advice on maintaining mental acuity at an advanced age and sounding like you’re 35 when you’re 86 years young; Markowitz’s attraction to the philosopher Hume; if it was fifty years later, if Markowitz would be a quant running a hedge fund today; Markowitz’s legacy; on being comfortable vs. being rich; the leveraged long-only hedge fund industry and being coaxed into putting your money into these institutions; Long Term Capital Management and portfolio theory. What a life! Want a free trend following video? Go to trendfollowing.com/win.
Michael Covel talks to Ryan Holiday, director of marketing for American Apparel; media strategist for Tucker Max, Dov Charney, and others; and author of the new book “The Obstacle Is The Way”. This is Holiday’s third appearance on the podcast. Covel and Holiday discuss Marcus Aurelius’ philosophy and stoicism, and why it has such a hold on Holiday; distraction; why the impediment to action actually advances action; the unpredictability of the world, and how we react to the world; George Clooney, and his start as an actor related to the obstacles we all face; Steve Jobs’ reality distortion field; what drives Holiday today; how will is the ultimate trump card; the two definitions of will; Alabama Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban and his approach to the moment of now; feeling great about the fight, the adversity, and the challenge; how the process is intrinsically valuable. For more information on Ryan Holiday, go to ryanholiday.net. Want a free trend following DVD? Go to trendfollowing.com/win.